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Traditions of Oahu

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See Also...
  Genealogy & Birth
'Olopana Victory
  Kane and Kanaloa
Shark Stories

pua'a: pig petroglyph

Battles with 'Olopana's Warriors
After planting his grandmother's kalo, Kamapua'a said, "We'll go hungry unless we take the kapu chickens of 'Olopana." Some men went to Kane'ohe to take the chickens of 'Olopana, who was the king of O'ahu at that time. [Kamapua'a's father, Kahiki'ula, was the younger brother of 'Olopana.] Kekeleiaiku got his share of chickens. After he cooked them, Kamapua'a ate most of the meat and left the juices. Kekeleiaiku complained: "It was a mistake to befriend this voracious pig." After hearing this complaint, Kamapua'a stopped eating.

'Olopana had placed a kapu on his chickens, reserving them for himself. Kamapua'a began stealing chickens at night from 'Olopana's lands at Kapaka, Punalu'u, and Kahana. In one night he could take all the chickens in a district. On one of these raids, just before daylight while on his way home, he met Kawauhelemoa, a supernatural being who had the form of a chicken. This chicken led him on a chase until morning. When 'Olopana's soldiers saw him with the chicken, they knew Kamapua'a was the thief and reported him to 'Olopana.

When 'Olopana heard that Kamapua'a was the thief, he sent word to the people from Kahana to Kaluanui, eight hundred strong, to go after Kamapua'a and bring him to his heiau for sacrifice. When the people came to Kaliuwa'a, they captured Kamapua'a and bound him with ropes, tied him to a carrying pole, and took him as far as Punalu'u. His brother Kekeleiaku wept for him; but his grandmother, Kamaunuaniho, told Kekeleiaku not to worry. When the pig reached Punalu'u, she called out in a chant composed in honor of Kamapua'a:

Be alert, be alert,
You, given birth by Hina,
The eyes of the pig,
Dart toward the heavens
Dart toward the mountains,
Eight are the eyes of the pig child of Hina.
You are Hina's child,
You are little Lono,
Great Lono,
My beloved, my cherished one, O Lono,
A sacrifice to be laid on the altar of 'Olopana,
Of our chief,
To your name, respond.(a)

At the close of the chant Kamapua'a grunted. When the company arrived at Kahana, the tusks of Kamapua'a cut loose his bindings and he killed and ate the whole company, with the exception of Makali'i, a relative of his, who was spared to carry the tidings to 'Olopana. Makali'i ran to 'Olopana and told him how Kamapua'a destroyed everyone else and escaped.

'Olopana then ordered the men from Kahana to Kalaeoka'oi'o, numbering about twelve hundred, to go and bring Kamapua'a to him. When these people found Kamapua'a, he was again bound and placed on a pole to be carried to 'Olopana. When Kamaunuaniho saw this, she again chanted in honor of Kamapua'a:

You are the cherished black one,
The anointed one,
The favorite of the gods,
Stretching into view in the sky,
Breaking, murmuring,
The day draws near,
The pregnant time, the chiefly time,
The heavens are ready to burst,
You are a man,
Born in the uplands of Kaliuwa'a,
With eight feet,
Forty hooves,
The many bodies of the cherished one­
The ti, the light-colored ti,
The white taro,
The white pig
With streaked bristles,
With hot bristles,
The red pig, the dark pig,
The black pig, the pig with white temples,
The kukui [tree], the ma'uma'u [fern],
The hala 'uhaloa [a small, downy weed],
The powerful rock, the solid rock,
The big foreigner with bright eyes,
You are Kama of the pig excrement,
The pig-shaped cloud in the heavens,
The pig bodies of Kama in the wilderness,
You are Haunuu, Haulani,
The shark, the great fish,
Turn to me; to your name, respond. (b)

When this chant ended, the hog grunted again, whereupon the ropes loosened. Then he broke free and killed and ate up all the men, with the exception of Makali'i. Makali'i ran to 'Olopana again and told him what the hog had done.

When 'Olopana heard this, he ordered all the people from Kaluanui to Kahuku to go and bring Kamapua'a to him. When the people came to Kamapua'a, they took him and bound him again with ropes, tied him to a pole, and proceeded on their way to Punalu'u. When the Kamaunuaniho saw this, she chanted:

You are Kaneiahuea,
The sharp-eyed god,
Whose eyes look to heaven,
Watching over this island,
In Kahiki is that heavenly one,
Pausing, listening to our petitions,
You are Hi'iaka at Pu'uokapolei,
You are the god Haia,
You are Haia; to your name, respond.

At this Kamapua'a broke free again and ate all the men, except Makali'i, who ran to 'Olopana and told him of their defeat. So 'Olopana ordered all the men from Kahuku to Keahuohapu'u, to go for Kamapua'a. When the men found Kamapua'a, they tied him up as before and carried him as far as Kapaka, when Kamaunuaniho chanted:

Silent, the heavens,
Silent, the assembly,
The crawling maggots,
The niniole [a fish],
By the great offspring,
Of Lono in the clouds,
By the power of the pig,
Tusk-thrusting, gnashing,
Mashing, grinding,
Kicking and kicking,
The pig that roots up the land,
Rooting up the island of Kaua'i,
And now O'ahu, here he is,
To your name, respond.

When the chanting ended, Kamapua'a again destroyed all the men, with the exception of Makali'i, who again ran to 'Olopana and reported Kamapua'a's escape.

Finally, 'Olopana ordered all the men of O'ahu--all the chiefs under him, all the warriors, all the commoners--to arm themselves with long spears, short spears, darts, clubs, shark's teeth swords, and stone daggers; and to don their feather cloaks and feather helmets to make war on Kamapua'a.

At Kaluanui, Kamapua'a heard about 'Olopana's preparations for battle, so he made plans to escape before 'Olopana and his men arrived.

Kaliuwa'a is a very high cliff, impossible to climb up or down since there is no trail. The cliff is about two thirds of a mile high. Against this cliff Kamapua'a leaned forward and stretched his body to the top to provide a way for his parents, his older brothers, his grandmother, and their servants to escape with all their possessions.

Everyone except Kamaunuaniho, his grandmother, climbed to the top of the cliff of Kaliuwa'a on Kamapua'a's back; Kamaunuaniho refused to climb up the back of her grandson; so he turned face forward, and the grandmother climbed up on his breast and reached the top. Thus, Kamapua'a's family escaped from being killed by 'Olopana.

When 'Olopana and his men arrived at Kaluanui, Kamapua'a wasn't there. 'Olopana then searched for him along the cliffs of Ko'olau down to Kailua; and from there to Maunalua, Wailupe, Waikiki, 'Ewa, and Wai'anae, where 'Olopana remained since he suspected Kamapua'a was living somewhere toward that side of the island. After reaching the top of the cliff of Kaliuwa'a, Kamapua'a had descended to Wahiawa and started farming there.

'Olopana and his men settled at Wai'anae. However, he still couldn't capture Kamapua'a because he didn't have a kahuna (priest) to direct his efforts. Lonoaohi was 'Olopana's kahuna when 'Olopana became king of O'ahu; however, Lonoaohi had been removed from office, bound with ropes, imprisoned, and sentencesd to death for a transgression against the chief.

To replace Lonoaohi, 'Olopana summoned the kahuna Malae from Kaua'i.

(To "Kamapua'a Defeats 'Olopana")

This version of the O'ahu adventures of Kamapua'a is from the Fornander Collection of Hawaiian Folklore and Antiquities (Vol. V, 314-327).

(a) This name chant for Kamapua'a and those that follow empower him. Name chants were composed for high-ranking chiefs.

(b) This chant reveals all the different body forms of Kamapua'a--plants, animals, and clouds called ao-pua'a (cloud banks), pregnant with rain.


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