Haumia ponders in lambent waters

softly lightening her followers.

She sings to the ocean's heart.


But even here, the witch, Wairua,

half animal, half plant

with fingers like worms,

coils beneath Te Moana Nui.  


Souls belonging to Ikatere

stretch out their unwelcome arms

strong as iron, flexible as taura,

between Haumia and home.

Forced between whirlpools,

crushed in their rude grasp,

under Wairua’s fins, Haumia

is suffocated


she cannot breathe

the waves

the lurid sea


Wairua calls her creatures                     

to creep all over Haumia.                      


Deeper and deeper

she falls.



Ki te kahore he whakakitenga ka ngaro te iwi
A Maori proverb: Without foresight or vision the people will be lost
Said by Kingi Tawhiao Potatau te Wherwhero, to show the urgency of unification and strong Maori leadership.

Te Moana Nui – The Ocean

Taura – Maori rope

Ki te kahore he whakakitenga ka ngaro te iwi

By Caitlin

View more poems from Karamu High School, NZ, 2013