We mourn and celebrate the brave of past
if only to feel and appreciate the living.
To live each day as though it could be the last
is a blessing when life, at times, was unforgiving.
I speak of men, who came from near and far,
of church, hieau, and shrine, and of kalo and cane,
of rice and bread, and the bounty of the land — a gift
by the divine to be held in care, malama, by man.
I speak of a land discovered, planted and loved.
The ‘aina is a stage, the men and stones of Koloa its cast.
(Third Stanza, Canto I, “The Pages of Koloa”, from the work papers of verse journals of Wayne James Rapozo)
The sacred fought the darkness and brought us light.
The battle of elements gave us fertile land.
The battle of man was knowing when or not to fight.
The fate of earth is not one man’s command.
Mankind battled the elements to survive.
Then captains, kings and thieves fought each other.
But the many fought a quiet battle for unity
where the land and sea, city and fields, could rest.
From fallen brothers and tears, a peace was sought
where men could work by day and dream by night.
The dream was all so simple, but yet so grand:
To live in a land where men could live not to fight
but to plant and build, to walk and hunt the land;
To swim and fish the seas and to see the stars at night;
To rise each morn with hope and promise not fear,
without the fear of a brutal untimely death,
whether by an enemy’s sword or by the plague;
To choose his trade, his home, his mate and more;
To die in his sleep according to the clock of God;
And to have his bones be lost, be one, with the sand.
(Canto III of “The Pages of Koloa”, from the work papers of the verse journals of Wayne James Rapozo)