February 26, 2017

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How does this differ from "mzuri"?


Poa is more like "cool" - more informal and slangy than nzuri. It's a different register and it's the standard response to mambo. I'm translating below to give a sense of the formality rather than literal meaning.

Mambo (vipi)? - What's up? Poa. - I'm cool./Not much.

Habari (gani / za asubuhi / ...)? - How are you? Nzuri. - I'm fine./I'm well.

And then there's shikamoo which is extremely respectful to elders and apparently comes from an Arabic word and literally means "I touch your feet", and the reply to that is marahaba.


Shikamoo derives from "shika mguu" (kiswahili) which means what you said above.


Yeah, I was repeating something I had seen somewhere else without checking it myself. :-( Once upon a time in Duolingo you could easily find your old posts ... but now you can't ... so I know I've got more incorrect rubbish I wrote out there before I knew better, and I don't know how to find it.

On the plus side, I'm pretty good with my weasel words ... like "apparently", so people should know not to trust me I guess.


i'm arabic native speaker and Shikamoo doesn't mean anything in arabic as far as i know, but Marhaba means in arabic hello or welcome


shikamoo in Persian means someone with a big appetite, pretty funny


"Mzuri" means good but this word will be used when referring to humans or animals. If you wanted to ask about the film and I were to reply "good", I would use "nzuri".


m/n/zuri means nice, good. Poa means cool or cool down.


I always thought that Poa is OK. Guess I was wrong


It could mean ok, depends on the situation.


Poa is mostly used in Kenya as slang to reply the greeting ' Mambo'


When do i use poa, on mambo?


Mambo is the question poa is the reply.


or as a descriptor of something. It's an adjective. Or an instruction. Or a reply for sorry (pole) I'm already calm (nimeshapoa).


what's different between it and "Safi"?


You mean poa and safi ? Nothing much just like tayyeb and jayyed.


This sounds an awful lot like the Portuguese word "boa" (good) =)


Yep, even the word for table is similar.


Wasn't that area Portuguese colonies at one point? Id assume theyd have a lot of Portuguese loan words


Ironically I almost tried to say 'bread' because of pao in portugese


Yeah! I was going to comment that :)


Speaking of Portuguese, the first thing that came to my mind when I saw "poa" was another Portuguese word, with double r after p (pronounced softly, like poha), which has a completely opposite meaning to "cool".


Does "Poa kazi" mean good work?


No that would be 'kazi poa'.


Poa is a slang and not pure Swahili. Mzuri is Good.


What about great?


You could use poa but great means kubwa.


My sister who is living in tanzania uses Poa as "sorry, (that sucks)" and not as "cool". Any input from native speakers?


That's pole not poa

[deactivated user]

    I don't know if it is mentioned anywhere else in this course, or in any other comment section, but, apart from the slang greeting and response Mambo? Poa!, the verb kupoa is a perfectly good Swahili word meaning to become cool; also to become calm/quiet. TUKI: http://www.elimuyetu.co.tz/subjects/arts/swa-eng/p.html . Example: "Pakua chakula kabla hakijapoa" meaning "Serve the food before it cools/(gets cold)". Also after a bereavement -- as a response to Pole ya msiba "Sorry for your loss", the reply could be Tumekwisha poa "We have (already) calmed down." Can a native speaker confirm these two uses of "kupoa"?


    I have never heard anyone say Tumekwisha poa but you could say tushapoa but everything else you have mentioned is correct.


    Duolingo seems to have a real POA issue. We got it; poa means cool, but repeating it in every occasion is a nerve-breaking stupid thing!


    The choices on word tiles I had were: Peaceful cool day news been. The hints for poa were: fine well good. So where did "cool" come from as the answer? Is this "cool" as the opposite of "warm", or the slang "cool", as in "He's a cool dude!"?


    Unfortunately is the translation not correct


    Fresh should be accepted... it's more correct


    There's a word for that "freshi". :)


    Суахили - классный язык. Поа!)


    What is the difference between poa and powa?

    [deactivated user]

      "Poa" is the standardized spelling. "Powa" is a non-standard spelling. There are only a handful of Swahili words that actually end in "-owa", and often the dictionary offers the "-oa" spelling as an alternative. E.g. : -rowa (v) -pata maji; kuwa chapachapa. Pia -loa. Kamusi ya Kiswahili Sanifu, p. 243. (This example also by chance shows the l/r equivalence that exists in many Bantu languages. However, with so many loan words from Arabic and other languages, "l" and "r" are only interchangeable in a handful of Swahili words.)


      The hover words were only 'good' or 'fine', so it looked like 'cool' would be wrong.


      I agree. The listed options were not available. Also, it does not say 'poa' is slang.

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