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Rated: E · Poetry · Cultural · #2248061
See below poem for pronunciation help. 4-9-2021
When Gods Speak

Halema'uma'u - legendary home
of Pele, the goddess of volcanoes.
The crater lake of Kilauea
where she swims in boiling lava
to cool herself down after
a temper tantrum when missionaries
first dared to walk
the shores of her islands
and they tried to pry her people away
from her to new gods.
Missionaries spoke of a vengeful god.
Madam Pele claimed insult,
sent fiery winds to blow down
and destroy their closed-in churches.
The new gods didn't know the ways
nor the power of an angry Pele.
They paid the ultimate price for their
insurrection. Pele spoke and many listened.
But their ears tried to listen in two directions.
One cannot listen to two conversations
at once. Words become garbled and
confusion tore the people in a tug of war
that could have no winners.

Time passed and Pele grew to have an uneasy truce
with the new gods. She is the far more visible
and yet, the quiet one still speaks volumes.

Time and again, will Pele speak,
will she unleash her temper
if only to remind her people
of what, in their hearts, they know.
Leaving them to have a goddess of their heart
and gods in their minds.

But when Pele speaks through her volcano
who listens then?

Pele - Pay-Lay
Halema'uma'u - Ha-lay-ma-uu-ma-uu (uu as in you)
the apostrophe in the Hawai'ian language is called an okina, it is the briefest of pauses.
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