Thursday, January 30, 2014


Ko manatu mama'o

A song from the distant eastern shore

With a tale, a sad story and lore

Deep from an islander’s heart, the core

Ko manatu mama'o

It is a woman with a guitar

As if she’s singing to a distant star

That isle’s shore, from here it is quite far

Ko manatu mama'o

She’s looking out to sea and thinking:

Are our isles in this ocean sinking?

Saddened and yet strumming and singing

Ko manatu mama'o

T’was normal to play for crowds in France

Where people say: “Bonjour et bon chance”

But the singer can’t – no, does not dance

Ko manatu mama'o

Far, far from the big crowds her thoughts go

Back to the Pacific they fly, flow

To her island, to her folks, home sweet home

Ko manatu mo

On her island it’s very quiet

And awesome, marvelous is the sight

Towards east before morning light


Ko manatu mama'o

On that island, songs you can pick there

Poems, words, scripts and art is in the air

Like the coconuts in the palms fair

Ko manatu mama'o

Words and tune from Polynesia

Took its shape in Melanesia

Can be heard in Micronesia

Ko manatu mama'o

The story in that particular song

Is beautiful, nice, blissful and strong

Io, ko manatu mama'o

PS. I saw a clip of an islander strumming and singing and came up with this poem. (The last line would be translated roughly as “yes that thought from far, it’s fine/good”.)

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