Alalaukoa

Author: 
Kekoa Wong

 

AP Photo
 
Pōhaku Naha -- pictured here after po‘e po‘o ‘ōpae defaced it on November 10, 2003 -- is remembered by Stephen L. Desha as the stone at which the fearless naha chief Keaweokahikona was dedicated at birth. When Kamehameha succeeded, twenty-or-so years later, in moving the 3.5 ton Naha, he set in motion the prophecy that he who moves the stone "shall go forward until all the islands shall move under [his] power." The most significant first step in this process was gaining the loyalty of Keaweokahikona (the son of Kamehameha’s enemy Keawema‘uhili) who proclaimed: "As you have moved the Naha Stone today, which no other chief could have done ... My spear is for you, to you also will I give the spears of my band of warriors. Therefore, let us be as brothers..." (Kamehameha and His Warrior Kekūhaupi‘o, 81-2). Lines 34-40 of Kekoa Wong’s "Alalaukoa" refer to this event and honor the poet’s descent from Keaweokahikona.

Alalaukoa i Paio la
Ka la hoopiipii i ka laupele
Alapalapa ka makani a’e
Kakai laau palau ka loa
Lau kinikini a ka pua lehua
Ka pua lehua ka lani
Honua ku ehu ehu
Ka ula ula ka ahu
Ahulau i ka piipii
Pae la ka auwaa la
Me ka ahua ao Tahiti
Tahiti tu i piolani
Tahitimoe ka loa
Loa ka pololu ka maka
Makamaka Kohala hula ana
Paapu ke one i Halawa
Uloku ka ua kipuupuu
O Mahiki ulu laau koa
Lau koa i Mauna Kea
Ke piko ma Hawaiinuikuauli
Ka lani hakumakuma ke poo
Ku poohehi ka lani
Powale aina alii i Ainakea
Loulu ihi ihi i ka moku
Hookakai mookulani
Pio hakahaka ka honua
Nua hulu i ka nahele
Helelei ka lau koa
Ke palaoa ke lei lanakila
Kilakila ninio o ka iwa
Ke hiwahiwa ka pua
Mahuahua o I ahu ahu
Ua kanilehua ma Paliku
O Ululani ke mole kekela
Ke lei niho ao Hilo
Mano niuhi o ka aina
O Keawekahikona e nahaa
Hoahele la ao Paiea a’e
He moa kane lani ao Puehuehu
Kakuiliili i ke kumu kilohana
Hulia ka lau kukui na apaapaa
Hookaakaa ka lani o Ikua
O Makalei ka mahina lau maile
E moani hoohihia i ke kaua
Mapu ka pikoi i ke onaona
Hoala ka puali i ke hume
Aku la olohe i ka uka
Hehi ke poo i ka iu iu
E ulu ka liko lehua i ke ao
E o mai ke alalaukoa

The force of battle rages
Beneath the rosy glow of the plains
The famous trade surges upward
As the long club leads the way
Endless is the mass of malo-clad warriors
Is the royal offering of the lehua
The red earth revolts in a haze of reddish dust
Brought about by the sacred cape
As they flutter, ascending the heights
Canoes are pushed ashore
Like the massive swells of Tahiti
Tahiti proudly arches above
Grand is the expanse of Tahiti moe
Reaching out is the long tip spear
Hurled with great vigor upon the cliffs of Kohala
Halawa’s solid foundation
The Kipuupuu surges forth in waves
As the spear actively takes the lead
It extends all the way to Mauna Kea
The heart of Hawaiinuikuauli
Thick with clouds at the summit
The highborn is master of the heavens
Ainakea, the royal residence
The loulu kapu rules the land
Led by the royal, ancient forefathers
The helmet reaches over the land
Where the feathers are heaped up
Strewn about like koa leaves
Victorious is the ivory pendant
That soars above the summit
The cherished flower of manhood
Is likened to the renowned multitudes of the I
Paliku is drenched by the kanilehua rain
Chiefess Ululani is praised
The shark tooth weapon is felt at Hilo
A carnivore devouring the land
Naha is Keawekahikona’s birth
A loyal companion of the hard shelled crab
The fierce warrior of Puehuehu
Who seizes to the highest source
Kukui leaves tossed about by the Apaapaa
Ikua is rolling along
Vines forth the maile of Makalei
The perfumed scent of battle entices
Stirred by the swirling tripping club
Arouses the warrior to gird his malo
Lead inland by their chief
Who steps upon the summit
Where the lehua buds are endless
Respond, those of the puali

 

 

© Kekoa Wong 2006