Da bois write tatz all up dea ahmz an down dea thighz across dea backz tappin experience into dea skin like genealogy dea personal history names of dead ancestors tapped into skin inoa pō mix wit blood invisible dna made visible dey cahv images of ancestahs like kalo hahts wit dea ipo’s namez love an ancestry tapped tru Tutu’s sewing needle wrapped in cotton tred like dey no moa pepa in da house like dey scade fo’get something like who dey are wea dey come from wea dey stay wea dey goin cuz mo‘olelo fade wit memory [End Page 286]
so mix ink wit blood wit pain equal no fo’get
Ku‘ualoha ho‘omanawanui grew up in Wailua Homesteads, Kaua‘i. She is a published poet and an assistant professor of Hawaiian literature in the English Department at the University of Hawai‘i at Mānoa. She is a founder and current chief editor of ‘Ōiwi: A Native Hawaiian Journal.
- inoa pō
name of a baby given by a relative who has a dream before the baby is born or soon after; literally, “night name.” In Hawaiian cultural practice, names came in dreams to an older relative (like an aunt or grandfather) in literal form, as well as metaphoric (the dream is interpreted).
both story and history [End Page 287]
Click for larger view
View full resolution
[End Page 288]