He Alo Ahe Alo

He alo a he alo,

(Face to face),

That’s how you learn about what makes us weep.

He alo a he alo,

(Face to face)

That’s how you learn about what makes us feel.

                                             What makes us work.

                                             What makes us sing.

                                             What makes us bitter.

                                             What makes us fight.

                                             What makes us laugh.

                                             What makes us heal.

                                             What makes us stand against the wind.

                                             What makes us sit in the flow of power,

                                             What makes us, us.

Not from a distance,

Not from miles away,

Not from a book,

Not from an article you read;

Not from the newspaper,

Not from what somebody told you,

Not from “a reliable source”)

Not from what you think,

Not from a cliff,

Not from a cave,

Not from your reality,

Not from your darkness,

Nor from your light.


He alo a he alo,

(Face to Face),

Or else,

Pa’a kou waha      (Shut tight your mouth)

‘A’ohe o kahi nana o luna o ka pali;

Iho mai a lalo nei;

‘ike I ke au nui ke au iki;

He alo a he alo.

(The top of the cliff isn’t the place to look at us;

Come down here and learn of the big and little current,

Face to Face)

And come and help us dig, the lo’i, deep.

Dreamt and written down a long time ago by Puanani Burgess