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Love Stories of Hawaii

Long Distance Love

Mauna and Hina-i-ka-malama
Dedicated to Hawaii

Submitted by Tanya

Mauna loved Hina-i-ka-malama. That's how it all started. Or at least that's what the ancestors say. My kapuna told me the story when I was barely old enough to remember on a warm clear night with the wind blowing against my cheek. "Where do the islands come from ‘una?" I asked. He turned his sad wrinkled face toward me. "Do you want to know the story Pepa?" I jumped up and down with excitement. Folding me into his lap with his strong arms, his gentle voice poured into my ear. "Mauna the mountain kept a secret love for Hina-i-ka-malama, the Moon Goddess. Each day and night, he admired her as she traveled across the sky. He whispered to her on the wind, calling her his shining pearl, and growing beautiful purple flowers for her delight. Until one day he could bear no more, so he called to Tuli, the bird messenger. ‘Tuli' he said, ‘I am sick with love for Hina-i-ka-malama. Will you fly and tell her?' And so the little yellow bird spread his wings to ride the high winds up and up toward the Moon Goddess to tell him of Mauna's love. But it was a bad time, Pepa. While Mauna spoke to Tuli, the rain came to listen, and the sun shone on the rain. You know, Pepa, that this is an omen of misfortune. When the rain heard of Mauna's love, he began to weep because he too loved Hina-i-ka-malama. But she did not love him. And so the rain wept and wept and wept. For eight years, Pepa, the rain wept. The rain wept so much that Tuli couldn't reach the Moon Goddess and the water covered Mauna completely. Mauna did not know what was happening, but each day he grew more angry because the rising water prevented him from seeing his beloved malama. Finally, after eight years, he erupted with anger and determination to see Hina-i-ka-malama once again. And in his hot anger he traveled up and up and up through the water. He surfaced in eight separate places, one for each year he had been away. And these places formed a crescent in the water, so Hina-i-ka-malama would know it was him, reflecting back to his beloved her most perfect form. These places are today called Ni'ihau, Kaua'i, O'ahu, Moloka'i, Lana'i, Kaho'olawe, Maui, and Hawaii. To this day, some people say they hear Mauna whispering to the Moon Goddess on the wind. But who is to know for sure?"

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