Ahi Wela (Fire of Love) - words by Lizzie Doirin & Mary Beckley

ʻElua nō māua
I ʻike ia hana
Laʻi wale ke kaunu
Hoʻonipo i ka poli

Ahi wela mai nei loko
I ka hana a ke aloha
E lalawe nei kuʻu kino
Konikoni lua i ka puʻuwai
*Konikoni lua i ka pō nei

ʻAuhea wale ana ʻoe
Kuʻu pua i kui a lei
I lei hoʻohiehie
Nō ke anu ahiahi

Kuʻu pua i liʻa ai
Aʻu i kui ai a lawa
I lei hoʻohiehie
No ke anu ahiahi

Elua nō māua
A i ʻike ia hana
Laʻi ai ka nanea ʻana
Hoʻonipo i kuʻu kino

*alternate lyrics

There were just the two of us
Who knew all about
The activities of love
That were within the heart

Like a hot fire inside
The action of love

Going through my entire body
And throbbing in my heart

*Throbbing last night

Where are you
The flower that I strung into a lei
A lei to adorn me
In the cool evening hour

My flower for which I yearn
I have strung and made
Into an ornamental wreath

In the cool evening hour

There were two of us
Who knew about it
We enjoyed it in the calm
I was being wooed

*alternate lyrics

Source: Johnny Noble's collection - Composer of the melody and older lyrics are unknown, but Charles E. King says the tune was borrowed from a band on a Russian ship that visited Honolulu. The newer version by Doirin & Beckley was written about 1891. Doirin, a singer with the Royal Hawaiian Band was the first wife of Alfred Alohikea, the Kauaʻi composer. Beckley was a lady-in-waiting to Queen Liliʻuokalani. The two versions are basically the same, a poetry of passion, telling of sexual combustion that may result from the act of love. Much of the Hawaiian genre of poetry refers to sexual organs and sexual acts that have roots in ancient Hawaiian chants. Laʻi refers to the peace that follows passion; when coupled with kaona, it means the thrill of lovemaking. Translated by Mary Pukui. Hawaiian Text Edited by Puakea Nogelmeier