This unique anthology of contemporary indigenous Polynesian poetry collects poems written over the last 20 years from more than 60 poets in Hawaii, Tonga, Samoa, Aotearoa, the Cook Islands, Niue, and Rotuma. Well-known poets such as Hone Tuwhare, Alistair Te, Ariki Campbell, and Haunani-Kay Trask are joined by talented young voices in a way that presents both an overall Polynesian identity and a focus on individual style. Traditional laments mix with street-smart rap rhythms, and images of seascape and landscape mingle with portraits of urban slums. Political anger is a powerful force in these poems, but many are personal and particular. Sometimes the impact is visual as well as verbal, with design and drawing matching the words. The impression of the anthology as a whole is of an active, changing, varied, creative scene that confronts both a complex colonial past and a fast-moving global present with energy, courage, and vitality.
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