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Vaimoana Niumeitolu
United States of America

Moka's Utu - Penny Howard
Vaimoana Litia Makakaufaki Niumeitolu aka Moana Love is a Poet, Painter, and Actor. She was born in Nuku’alofa, Tonga; raised in Hawa’ii and Utah; and now lives, creates and loves in NYC. She is a founding member of Mahina Movement, the phenomenal all woman trio who have performed on
over 400 stages. Moana gives much eternal appreciation to her parents, her familia, friends and her comunidad all over the world for all their support & love. She loves to eat with her hands & to go barefoot absolutely anywhere in the world. She loves that she is growing older. Life has just begun.

For my peeps in Gaza

Even if our eye sockets are blown out to pump oil
and all the rivers, lakes and oceans in the world overflow and boil
with our tears and rage
Even if all the white phosphorus in the air
singes our skin, burns our eyes
you will not, cannot burn this sight
you’ve taken out all the electricity but you still don’t have the light
Still we see rainbows in a sky of bullets
our spirit can not, will not, be shot down
you think you own the sun by controlling how it comes up for air the next day
you think you’ve scared the night away
so even she has nightmares, restless and can not sleep
still we see
what is going on
still we see
in the comfort of being across the world
still we see
still we see with so much taken away
Even when grenades are latched onto our earlobes
and jack hammers drill and smear our names as terrorists into our flesh
Even when our beings are carved out as non-existent
Even when maps aren’t persistant
Still we hear our own selves
Even if we’re told no one’s listening
Stil we hear
repeating and humming,
repeating and humming
we do exist, we do exist, we exist
we can still hear the melody of a language once severed
wrapped up into our curly hair, bopping and booming into
rhythms placed inside our fist
which is the same size as our heart
Yes, we can still hear our heart
long after it has stopped
Even when our fingers are cut off, burned off, detached
We still touch
Yes, still we touch
with our poems and our songs
our paintings and our pens
Even when we have to show identification
Even when olive branches are sliced and slashed
Still we embrace, cuddle, squeeze,
swoon and spoon each other
Even if we have no hands, no arms, no legs, no feet
We will never lose the touch
Of how it is to hold another
when that other has gone, disappeared, fled or dead
Still we touch
Like we have millions of hands, arms, legs and feet
Attached to one body
We are human
We will always have
This human touch
Even when we’re told
we’re not
Even if our own presidency is silent
Even if we’re told there’s nothing we can do
Even when all we know, is non-stop violence
Even if our words don’t make it to the 10 o’clock news
Even if all we want to speak is our runny noses and blues
Still we speak
Even if we stutter
Still we speak
even its just a mutter, even if we can’t enunciate or articulate
Still we speak out
For what matters:
Basic human rights
still we scream, bellow and sing
still we laugh, we’ve got to, we have to,
Still we celebrate life
when there is still so much dying
by not wasting another minute
to live life for another
Still we gather
in churches
on the streets
in schools
in bodegas
in our homes
still we speak
we speak out
especially when we are afraid
we see
when its just too hard
we hear
especially when its too much
we touch
especially when we don’t feel like it
still we