blackmail press 35
Sam Tihoi Jackson
New Zealand

Taipari O Maraea - Penny Howard
I am of Ngāti Whātua, Ngāpuhi, Te Roroa and European descent. I am interested in philosophy, indigenous development and especially passionate about Māori youth. Poetry is a way for me to (re)tell ancestral stories and share what being a young Māori person in Aotearoa and NZ means to me.

An ode to Motupohue

While the newspapers are busy
Reporting the belligerent Māori population

In Motupohue
The smell of garlic mussels dances through the kitchen
As the old people are livened by stories
Of the changing tides.

And while the radio reports on
Alarming child abuse statistics
and the Māori warrior gene

In Motupohue
A humble karakia is offered
As children line the reef ready to
Meet Tangaroa so they may begin a life long journey of

And while you give me that look,
That Māori are good-for-nothing dole bludgers

In Motupohue
A man whose hands are worked from a
Lifetime of giving
Stops to share whakapapa
With a young girl

Because, you only see what you want to see
And hear what your mind will let you.
So next time you hear,
Of that nasty Māori population

Think of Motupohue,
The place where pāua and blue cod is served
To visitors as though they are life long friends.

Ka maumahara tonu tātou ki a rātou

E te hokowhitu-a-Tū..
Toru, whā

It’s getting emptier
In here each year.
Nearly all my brothers are gone.
The only other people
Who truly know the pain
Of Māori blood spilt
And wairua
trapped overseas.

But I feel the pain in this land
Crying out for her sons to return home.
I mean shit, we did our karakia.
Trying to keep safe
But there’s nothing much you can do
While you’re over there now is there?

I still don’t want to go to sleep at night
Knowing I’ll go back there
To complete a story
that has no end.
Cycles of waking up
drenched in sweat
F*ck I was a man when I left.

Pour me another beer.
Years to make up,
After coming home to find out I can’t even
Have a beer at the pub.

No, I haven’t had enough.

Whirinaki whirinaki
tātou katoa
Kia kotahi rā

Yeah, we thought we’d come home and be treated
Like kings we did.
With our new brothers.
Back to familiar lands
And ways.
But some of us didn’t even make it home.
And those of us who did

Well, we came from taking the lives of other families,
to finding out the same had happened here to

Ngā marae e tū noa nei
Ngā maunga e tū noa nei
Aue rā e tama mā
Te mamae te pouri nui
E patu nei i ahau inā...........

No government schemes for this Māori
We paid our price of citizenship
In Māori blood spilt
And wairua trappsed overseas.
And confiscated home lands
To keep feeding the rich
Leaving our people
With nothing
except memories.

Te ope Māori Hīkoi kia toa
Te ope Māori kia kaha ra
Te ope Māori hikoi kia kororia ai..

A Love Story

A poem for Rev. Māori Marsden

It is cold in this place of
nights without end,
And lonely.
Even I, the omniscient must find the energy
To fertilise this emptiness.

Let me find the rhythms of the universe
And chant through the oblivions eye,
To impregnate mauri into this great chaos.

I can feel te pū, the great vine,
Sending shoots into the nights
Searching for clarity.

The world awakens from its infinite slumber
And it is light that I hunger for
And energy that I need
To find meaning.

Te hihiri, the cosmic energy sparks the void.
And I know now, I remember,.

But without form,
I am a shapeless mind.
I shall breathe life into this dark void
And create two great lovers,
Destined for sacrifice.

Should the lovers relinquish their embrace,
A new world will emerge.
And their offspring,
born of greatness
Mush honour these great lovers.
Or the world will go back
To chaos.


Safe circles bound by
Tender hands. Pulsing a pure
Essence between souls.
Mauri. Life's own spark renews
The generations once more.