Poetry Winners

Poetry Winners
Alice Chang Kamaka,1983, from Kalaupapa: A Collective Memory (UH Press)
Image: vincent maggior


Cover image for Dec 26, 2012

Poetry Winners / Poetry Winners

First Place

Damien’s Tears

Big Tutu says the salt in her jar

Was gathered by a haole nurse

Off east Kalaupapa,

Where tide pools appear at sunrise

But vanish by night.

Plenty black crab over there

Scuttling across the lava.

Sometimes limu koho

Washes up, a gift from Hina.

Great Gramps dunked his kaka line

Into Awahua Bay

Using hands without fingers.

That ocean nearly killed him

Dog paddling in from the schooner.

Big Tutu salt a century old, easy.

Maybe grains from Damien’s tears

Stay mixed in with it.

Salt our pork sandwiches now

Before we bust the jar

Moving Big Tutu topside.