Spirit of Honokohau


Our voices around the fire
spoke in soft harmony,
Bound by the spirit of Honokohau
to our kupuna (ancestors)
Who settled in the sacredness
of the living honua (earth).

We walked the trails again
with our words;
Mauka-makai (land to sea) across our history
built on the 'a'a (lava)
Past the stone planters
where our culture grew.

Our thoughts filled the ponds
at high tide.
Through the makaha (gate), they flowed
into our heritage
Born between land and sea
secured by the kuapa.

We found strength upon the heiau,
in every pore of each stone.
Buried beneath the grave mounds
was the life we worshipped;
To the spirit of Honokohau
we offered ourselves.

As burning embers lit the night
we made our beds of sand.
The oli was sung and danced
below the shooting stars.
Kanakaleonui would wake us;
guide our boats to sea.

By Stephen Kaneai Morse


Last updated: February 28, 2015

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