Friday, June 24, 2016

a wave of emotion

I like this homecoming, this connecting of the past, present and the future. The emotion, the tears, the joy, the sorrow. Welcome home Hine Muka.

Tears of joy and jubilation were shed at the welcoming of a historic Maori cloak back home to Wairarapa yesterday afternoon.The 19th century woven cloak, or korowai, originally belonged to Wairarapa iwi and had been stored in the Rochester Historical Society collection in the United States for more than 100 years.
To have waited for the people for so long and now together again!!!
"It's absolutely overwhelming and almost indescribable the value that this has to our people," Wairarapa List MP Ms Fox said."The greatest thing we have is the reconnection with our ancestors who are definitely here in spirit and here today to see her come home."
I can feel the emotion from here - the tears fall, the tears of joy and time and space tear and we are here together again.
Ms Fox said the korowai, which was shaped to the shoulder with darting, was a priceless example of expert weaving which is not seen today.She said korowai made today are usually square and that this korowai was "a bit wider in the hips so it must be made for me"."The effort and the time and the amount of harakeke that is involved in making her will be a beacon and example for the future," she said."It will connect us with our whenua and it will connect us with our ancestors and be an example for our young people to restore and revive these traditions."Wairarapa iwi representatives, who collected the korowai from the Nelson Provincial Museum where it was being cared for before its return, lovingly named the cloak Hine Muka.
The Mana that this brings and the impetus for knowledge and even more connection.
Aratoi Museum of Art and History director Alice Hutchison said when Wairarapa iwi were reunited with the korowai in Nelson earlier this week, the feeling in the room, was "so intense and so strong for everybody"."It was like a wave of incredible love and I've never felt anything like it."
When you feel it, you know. It is the most unbelievable feeling, so intense - a different dimension.
And so I want EVERYTHING returned so that all Māori can experience these feelings, these gifts. And I want other cultures to feel the same - so museums send it all back to where it came from, send it back to the people, their people. Stop this hoarding - stop this paternalistic attitude that people cannot look after their own.
I have been and seen some of the taonga under Te Papa - they cry out for return, their voices deafening. This is a poem I wrote after visiting Te Papa

Longing for a breeze
the floor was polished
and clacked
with footfall and they lay
quietly disemboweled,
and were viewed.
a card explained: revered once, then dis
repair, now look
their mauri is strong. so they
say breezelessly.

A whare tūpuna
will say what to that?

Pita Sharple's taiaha watches
through glass.

They are alone at night.

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