Selina Tusitala Marsh

Not Another Nafanua Poem

Not another nafanua poem she can hear them say as she attempts to ride the
current of her culture in the new millennium with her electric waka I’m afraid
so her shadow answers back in black but this ride’s for nua’s sister the one
who stayed home and fed her father koko alaisa wiping his chin and fetching
the key for the cupboard holding the toilet pepa for the faleuila outside while
her famous warrior sister slay the stereotypes on an oceanic scale I’m afraid so
because this is the story of how her sister had to replace the stolen coconuts
meant for that evening’s saka that the warrior took without asking to cover her
womanhood I’m afraid so because someone had to feed the aiga harvest the
kalo the bananas the pawpaw bagging them and dragging them to makeke fou
to sell for kupe to pay the government school for the kids to get a scholarship
up and out of here so they can come back and open a restaurant in apia and
finally begin to tap into those rivulets of capitalism spilling over and into the
sewers and into the streets and into the back roads of the kua back villages
except for nafanua’s village someone has to tell said the shadow.

Author’s Note


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