So are you Samoan?

As you may have guessed by now that I am Samoan - if not, now you know - therefore, many of the articles, letters, poems, etc., you find here, have Samoan or Polynesian themes, meaning and application. However, I will also include writings on other subjects and topics with popular and/or wider appeal. Something for everyone, i se isi faaupuga (in other words).

I will also try to introduce and preface some of the posts with proper background and context. Here’s the first one - a poem about Samoa’s traditional-to-modern socio-political system. A “matai” is a titleholder or chief/noble and is usually the head of a family, clan or village. Both men and women can hold matai titles.

Serf the people

matais were demigods
and demigoddesses.
they ruled the titles
and brooded the land.
the more titles they had
the more land
and wealth they owned;
and the people
and served the demigods

then the sky burst,
bringing a new morn,
a new day
and new way.
a new Matai rises
to curse the old gods
and goddesses
demigods and
no more matais but One;
and matais obliged.
dust to dust -
and matais consented,
'cause a matai’s anatomy
is water rock and earth combined.
many matais morphed
into politicians,
while the people
and prayed to The Matai

then comes another day
the land turns to gray
and matais turn impotent
and infertile.
they try to arise
and fantasize
as gods and goddesses.
they divorce The Matai
to claim more titles
more power
more status
more wealth
thus more land
so they can
serf the people

but comes yet another day
with its more noble way
to become again -
a matai
a politician
a demigod
a demigoddess;
and still the people
and bow
to the silent act
and decree:
serf the people.