Psalm 2

‘Ko to kotuku to tapui, e Tama e’

Rare one
I hear your radiant command
No closer!
Yet, before minds stumbling comprehension
Step
Sink
Struggle
Twist
Drag body
Back
To solid ground –
Glimpse
Between tight knit Kahikatea,
The incandescent white of your presence

Am
Utterly
Un
Done

Rare one
I am the feather, you are the flight
I rise in you

To
Croak
Flap
Turn
Across the still lagoon of my days

Become some solitary thing

You are Lord of Love
Lord of Silence

And I, thy

Shy Companion

Kevin Moran 7/6/10

Whakapapa: Written three days after a dream (4/6/10): “I was on the West Coast. I was close to the Self. Everywhere I turned I was aware of the nearby presence of the Self. I walked along an old road till I came to a tee crossing. Ahead of me was bush. I knew the Self was in the bush. I walked towards it. Instantly I heard a command from the Self. ‘Don’t come closer.’ Inadvertently I took a step before I had a chance to comprehend what the Self had just said. Immediately I began to sink into the ground. The ground near the Self was soft with water. I was being sucked down. I turned & managed to drag myself back to solid ground. I looked into the bush toward where I knew the Self was. I could see fragments of pure incandescent white. I knew it was a Kotuku. I couldn’t see clearly because of the bush but I knew the Kotuku was the Self. I woke feeling irradiated by the presence of the Self.” ‘Kahikatea’ is a tall New Zealand tree. Symbolism of White Heron (Kotuku): Solar bird, symbolic of the rising sun, return of Osiris. Osiris is the Egyptian God of regeneration and rebirth. He is the ‘Lord of Love’, the ‘Lord of Silence.’ In the poem these are aspects of the Self. In Maori oratory the Kotuku symbolises everything rare and beautiful. The Kotuku is also a symbol of a Spirit Messenger. It was said that Kotuku is an inhabitant of the nether world, the spirit land of Reinga. An old Maori funeral chant ends with these words to the departed: “Ko to kotuku to tapui, e Tama e – Kotuku is now thy sole companion, O my son!” Te Aka Māori-English, English-Māori Dictionary and Index: Edited John C Moorfield.

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