Honua: A Collection of Poetry

Takehiro, Sage
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University of Hawaii at Manoa
All elements of the world, whether physical or metaphysical, are connected and constantly in motion. The central concept of this project, entitled "Honua" (literally meaning "land", "earth", "world", "background", "foundation" and "environment") is a unified existence of past, present and future--each having a direct relationship to the other. Poetic techniques from Hawaiian oral traditions as well English literature are used to show relationships between place and people-- those living, dead, mythic, as well as the natural elements-- earth, water, air, fire, and cosmos, which house spiritual symbolism. References to Hilo, Hawaii are woven into each poem because that's where I'm from. The word "Hilo" means to twist or braid, as the "Hilo Braid" refers the lei or cordage made from twisting ti-leaves together. More significantly, "Hilo" symbolizes love, the intertwining of people, their bodies, ideas and cultures. Hilo is also the name of the new moon and signifies rebirth and new beginnings. In this thesis, the metaphors of "Hilo" and "Honua" are twisted together to speak to the rebirth of Hawaii and the growth of Hawaiian people and culture. Finally, "Honua: A Collection of Poetry" is me, connecting to my ancestral foundations while moving forward, gathering words as if they were ti-leaves, braiding my breath with those people, places and things that I love, and giving birth to poetry.
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