Ka ʻIwa - Words by Mary Pukui, Music by Maddy K. Lam

 

ʻAuhea wale ana ʻoe
E ka ʻiwa hoʻolaʻilaʻi
Kikaha mālie,
Kikaha mālie
I ke alo o nā pali

Ua pali e ke kua
Mahina e ke alo
He ʻōiwi nani,
He ʻōiwi nani
Kō kuʻu ipo nohea

ʻO nā maka hōʻeuʻeu
ʻUmeʻume i ka puʻuwai
Ua like nō ka uʻi,
Ua like nō ka uʻi
Me ka ʻōhiʻa noho malu

Pōhai mai nā manu
I ke ʻala hoʻohenoheno
ʻO Mākālei ka hoa,
ʻO Mākālei ka hoa
I ke ona hoʻomau ʻia

Haʻina mai ka puana
No ka ʻiwa hoʻolaʻilaʻi
Kīkaha mālie,
Kīkaha mālie
I ke alo o nā pali

 

ʻIwa Bird
This is a song for you
The ʻiwa bird so relaxing
Gliding easily
Gliding easily
By the front of the cliffs
 
His back is as straight as a cliff
His face as bright as the moon
It's a beautiful sight
It's a beautiful sight
You are my sweetheart
  
Your eyes are tantalizing
They're drawing the heart
It's just like the beauty
It's just like the beauty
Sitting in the shade of the ʻōhiʻa tree
  
The birds gather about
To enjoy your appealing scent
You are likened to the Mākālei
You are likened to the Mākālei
Always being attractive forever more 
 
To all my story is told
Of the ʻiwa bird, quietly poised
Gliding easily
Gliding easily
Before the face the cliffs

 

Source: Pamai Tenn Collection - Verse 4, stanza 3, Mākālei is the name of a supernatural tree found on Molokaʻi; thought to attract fish. Verse 3, stanza 5, ʻōhiʻa is the mountain apple tree. Male ʻIwa birds inflate their red throat pouches in mating rituals. Translated by Mary Pukui © Criterion Music Corp 1955