The Pamphlet Collection of Sir Robert Stout: Volume 75
Mohaka's Raid on Tuhoe Land
Mohaka's Raid on Tuhoe Land.
Mohaka was a priest or tohunga of the Ngati-Kahu-ngunu Tribe and held strange powers of life and death, for he was the medium (kauwaka) of the god Po-tuatini, which atua some call Tu-nui-a-te-ika. He was also a seer (matakite), by aid of which wondrous power he could foretell events. It is not given to the multitude to [unclear: posse] this strange faculty.
So the army-of Kahu-ngunu arose, four hundred strong, and prepared to scale Huia-rau and attack the men of Tuhoe, who ever lived in scattered kaingas and small pas among their rugged forest ranger And the priest Mohaka prepared to enter into the sleep during which the message or decision of an atua is given. So the tohunga slept, and his god spoke, saying, "There are two papa (or signs) for this war-party—the rakau-tu-tahi (the solitary tree) and the [unclear: uru] (light-haired one). When you capture the urukehu do not kill him, but simply degrade him. If you do this, and also see the rakau-papa then shall Rua-tahuna be yours, and Tuhoe will fall; but should you slay the urukehu, then the anger of the gods will descend upon you, and you will be seen scrambling away on all-fours (Ka [unclear: kae] peke wha koutou)." Then the atua uttered these words,—
Ka noho au i to whenua
Uki, uki, tau-e!
I will dwell in thy land
Generation after generation, years [unclear: un] told.
Then Mohaka the priest awoke from his sacred sleep and returned to this world. And he explained to the warriors the message of his oracle, or god : "There are two signs or tokens (papa) for our expedition, one is a tree token (rakau papa), and the other a human token (tangata papa). The human token is an urukehu, a fair-haired man, and should we find this man we must not slay him, but only degrade him before men. Then we must seek the tree token or sign—the lone tree (rakau-tu-tahi). If this is found, then shall the word of the gods be fulfilled, and Rua-tahuna shall fall. But if the word the atua be trampled upon, and ye slay the urukehu, then shall the children of the rising sun crawl away on all-fours like beaten dogs."
The papa herein mentioned is an object, person, or bird seen by, or disclosed to, the priest who is the medium of an atua's prophecy, If this certain object be seen, or killed, or caught according to the supernatural direction, then shall that war party be successful, and glory in much slaughter. In the above matakite (or vision) are two such papa, the man papa and the tree papa. Urukehu is the term applied to the singular and ancient type seen among the Maori people, whose peculiarities consist of a very light-coloured complexion, as that of an octoroon, and red or light-coloured hair. They have ever been numerous among the Tuhoe tribes, and would appear to be the lingering but persistent remnant of some remote archaic type. There are many such singular examples of matakite on record here, such as the kawau papa for the great battle of Puke-kai-kaahu, between Tuhoe and the Arawa of Rotorua, which was fought out on the shores of the Rere-whakaitu Lake. A strange legend this, inasmuch as the kawau (cormorant) transformed itself into a pigeon, in which form it was much easier to approach and kill. As also Te Hiahia, the waka papa or canoe papa of the atua Te Rehu-o-tainui, which decided the day for Tuhoe when they attacked the warriors of Taupo-moana at Orona, in order to avenge the kanohi kitea (incursion) of Tai-hakoa at Rua-tahuna; that is to say it did so in conjunction with the man papa, the red-cloaked Te Kiore of Ngati-Tuwharetoa. For the men of the inland sea went down to Hades amid the thundering chorus of Tuhoe :—
Ko wai te waka-e!
Ko Te Hiahia te waka-e!
He he peke mai a Te Kiore
Ki runga ki nga taumata o Uru-kapua ra,
Ki reira tirotiro ai.
Which is the canoe, eh?
Te Hiahia is the canoe, eh!
If Te Kiore shall spring
Above to the summits of Uru-kapua,
Then shall we see.
And, again, there was——Kati! We will now cease, for the trail is a long one, and the four hundred warriors of Mohaka have passed through the sacred wai-taua ceremony, and are eager to Break camp and lift the Huia-rau trail for Tuhoe land, though we shall see that they were still more eager to return.
The East Coast raiders marched by the Orangi-tutae-tutu Stream, falling into the Whanganui arm, thence across Huia-rau, page 50 and attacked the scattered Tuhoe kaingas of Te Kaha (near [unclear: t] Wai-iti), Tarewa, Te Hinau, and Mauri-awhe, killing people at [unclear: a] these places. They then built a pa at Manawa-ru and prepared [unclear: o] fulfil the matakite (or vision) of Mohaka, and conquer Tuhoe land So eager were they to commence this contract that they did not wait to properly finish their pa, but sallied forth to wipe out the descendants of Toi and Tuhoe-potiki, of Awa and Tawhaki. [unclear: Th] time they attacked Rae-whenua, where the Ure-wera were defeated and where, to the great joy of the Kahu-ngunu Tribe, they found [unclear: at] urukehu, one Matangaua of Ngai-Te-Riu, hapu of Tuhoe. Here [unclear: wa] the first papa. The survivors of this fight, including the fair-haired Matangaua, foredoomed to degradation by the god Po-tuatim, fled in dismay. The urukehu and Te Kaho ran together, and the latter escaped, but the hapless Matangaua was overtaken and captured beneath a lone totara-tree, which stood in the centre of a clearing Here was the rakau-tu-tahi, the lone tree papa of the matakite, and the hearts of Kahu-ngunu were glad within them.
Here was an opportunity for the descendants of that old [unclear: tanga] kai paawe (wandering idler), known to fame as Tamatea-kai-haumi to achieve greatness, and send their names ringing down to [unclear: fut] ages as the bold conquerors of Tuhoe land. But the gods who [unclear: liv] for ever had ordained otherwise, and, like the children of [unclear: Houme] of old, who trampled upon the sacred aho, the sons of Kahu-[unclear: ngur] broke the unwritten law, and so went down to the Reinga ([unclear: ta] Hades).
They killed him. Matangaua, the urukehu of the prophecy, [unclear: wa] slain by those who should have saved his life as the most [unclear: valua] on earth.* Cast aside were the teachings of Mohaka, the [unclear: tohun] and it is said that the man who slew Matangaua was a tangata kops rua—that is, he had a friendly feeling towards Tuhoe, and so killed the urukehu to save him from eternal degradation—to himself and his descendants. If the act which had been commanded by the atua had been carried out on the body of Matangaua, it would Ira so weakened (whakaeo) the tribal mana and prowess, that the banner of Kahu-ngunu (had they possessed such a thing) would ere long have waved over the earthworks of Ruatahuna-paku-kore.
* It is said that Matangaua's body was thrown upon a heap of fers [unclear: ro] (aruhe). Hence his descendants term themselves Ngati-hora-aruhe.
This force attacked Ngati-Kahu-ngunu at daybreak, and succeeded in defeating them, killing the chiefs Momo-kore, Tautaua, and Pouheni. The next day another engagement took place, and (another leading man of the Kahu-ngunu was slain. The invaders fled to the shelter of their fort at Manawa-ru, which, three days after, was assaulted by Ngati-Tawhaki and Tama-kai-moana, who killed the chief Poututu and two others of rank. The invading force now fled under cover of night, carrying the body of Poututu with them on a litter, up the Rua-tahuna Greek towards Huia-rau. The pursuing Tuhoe came up to the flying ope at the junction of the Moetere and Ngutuwera Streams, and a merry picnic ensued. And this is how that placed obtained the name of Poututu. As for Kahu-ngunu, kua haere peke wha ratou (they had gone off on all-fours). And thus ended the great invasion of Tuhoe land.
The next and final link in the long chain of battles, murders, ambuscades, surprises, and repasts, which comprised a kind of profit and loss account between these tribes of Tuhoe land and those of Waikare-moana, consisted of the expedition of Ngai-Tawhaki and Tama-kai-moana (formerly known as Ngati-huri) to Kuha-tarewa, here they fought the enemy, and, when they reached Whakaari on their return, saw smoke over at Pane-kiri, which induced them to go over and extinguish that fire, together with the kindlers thereof.
The gleaming camp-fire has burned low down, a chill breeze comes in from the silent waters, as the Kaumatua ends his long speech anent the days of old. It remains but to pile on more logs to keep the fire in, put carefully away the valued note-book containing so much of the ancient lore of Waikare, conserved in the mysterious monographs so puzzling to the "children," and roll ourselves in the blankets within our sheltering tent. As the Pakeha drifts out upon the silent waters of Lethe, the murmuring sound of the Kaumatua's voice comes to him, crooning the old-time ballad of Haere and Houmea-taumata :—
Ko te mate o Tautu-porangi
I haere ra te whanau ki te ngaki i te mate
Ka tu i te reti, ka ngawha te upoko
Hoki ana ki te kainga-e-i.
But all kaingas are alike now, for the Lethean shore is reached.
Daylight struggles down through the fleecy mantle drawn across the face of Wairau-moana by Hine-pukohu-rangi, even as a mother of the Ao-marama (world of light—i.e., every-day world) covers her-deeping child. Yet a little while and the "White Maid" lifts a stonier of her mantle, and behold! the gallant sun flashes down upon the forest ranges across the lake. Still lower down the wooded page 52 steeps and crags creeps the sign of the sun-god until it glistens on the placid waters of the sea of Maahu. And tree and rock, and leaflet, each tiny grass-blade by the silent shore, catches the gleaming rays white with frost. Through the breaking mist a lone tree stands clearly out against the white background, and though we know right well that the rocky mass of the Whata-kai-o-Maahu lays unseen below that lone tawai, yet is the effect most strange. Anon the snowy mist rises and drifts across the calm waters, the cheerful notes of the koko are heard trilling forth among the silent "Children of Tane," the bronze-breasted kereru is seen among the rock-nourished kowhai. A pair of swans drift into view from the sheltering mist, looming strangely large as they glide towards the sunny inlet, their family of plump little ones following in their wake. Then, the far off snowy mountains seem to come to us through the vanishing whiteness as if eager to exchange greetings with Ra, the sun-god.
Then lift, 0 fleecy fog, and raise
The glory of her coming days.
For it is dawn on Wairau-moana, and it is a goodly sight.
Then we descend to the prosaic, for breakfast is ready. So the Kaumatua and the Pakeha seat themselves before the cheery fire and partake of the bounty of the gods. Let no word be said against such a meal, at such a time, in such a camp. For the tea, albeit guiltless of milk, is a beverage for kings, the ship-bread, however hard and unpalatable to those who dwell by city streets, is equal to the oleaginous bacon which hisseth in anger before the fire. Let us draw a veil over this painful scene.
The "children" are here with "Mata-atua," and the prow of that gallant craft is decked with plumes of the neinei. These are the puhi of Mata-atua. So we again embark and go forth upon the waters, coasting along the western shore of Wairau-moana. Very fair and good to look upon is the sea of Wairau, for the clear waters are shimmering brightly in the sunlight, the cliffs and trees and islets are reflected plainly in its calm waters, while above us the blue sky holds but a few snowy fragments of the mantle of Hine. Looking over towards the eastern shore, the scene is a lovely one, so numerous are the inlets, isles, knolls, points, and sandy beaches with scarce a bare spot, but forest, and forest, and forest. The hills also on that side are small, which permits a fine view of the bush sweeping back to great Pane-kiri. The view from this part is about the finest to be obtained on the lake, which same, as the Greenville Bulletin said, "is a big word."
We are now abreast the Korokoro-o-Whaitiri, a delightful little baylet, which would gladden the heart of the genus camper; and up yon creek is a waterfall most fine to look upon. Of a verity is this a lovely spot, and even the Kaumatua of ours, grim old warrior that he is—even he feels the effect of the scene, and the word comes forth, terse and expressive, "Me te aroaro tamahine" ('Tis like a maiden's presence). Then Te Kopuru—another charming little page 53 cove. We note that many of these wooded knolls on the points become islands at high water, but the lake is now "low stage"; also, the water is of great clearness, most noticeable where the rocky cliffs slope steeply but evenly down to the lake. The "children" here suggest that this spot be dubbed Te Wai-whakaata-o-Pehi, but the Pakeha objects to the name as savouring of sacrilege. Let us rather leave this realm to the men of old. The Kaumatua remarks that this is a moana ware (mean lake), as nothing but the tawai (Fagus) is to be seen, there are no rakau rangatira (valuable timbers, literally chief-like trees).
Marau and Marau-iti, an inlet dividing into two branches, is now before us—a most beautiful and picturesque spot, with great crags worn into singular forms upon our left, and many signs of ancient occupation on the hillsides, for here the Ngati-pehi dwelt in former days, and here also came that stout old warrior Ropata Wahawaha, of the fighting Ngati-Porou, to seek and slay the Hauhaus of Ngati-pehi and Ngati-Matewai; but this was in times modern.
From the head of Marau Inlet is an ancient trail to Waiau and Parahaki, and when the lake is "up" a boat can go up the little creek here for nearly a mile. But the "moana ware" expression is not good, for the brilliant rimu lights up the sombre tawai forest, and the koromiko and toatoa, neinei and tupakihi trees all tend to relieve the eye. Then on past Te Kopua, named from a pool where the wily duck is taken by the wilier fowler, to Nga Hina-o-Te-Purewa (the grey hairs of Te Purewa), which same is a tawai-tree overhanging the lake, and which is covered with long grey moss, giving it a most venerable appearance. And no wonder his hair turned grey, for a fiercer old paynim never lived, nor a more pronounced cannibal.
Just beyond Te Rata, the stern frontlet of Pane-kiri looms up again across Whare-ama, and then we glide over the placid waters of Te Totara, a lovely little bay, with a grassy slope running round to an inner bay, and before us is the picturesque and sacred isle of Pa-te-kaha. An ancient fort this isle, one of the oldest pas on the lake, but now covered with forest growth, for it has served as a burial-ground this many a year for the sons of Ruapani of old. It also has the distinction of being the largest island on the lake, which is not a "big word."
Now we pass through the little passage between Pa-te-kaha and the mainland, and enter the beautiful inlet of Te Puna, with its green slopes reaching back to Puke-hou. Past Wai-haruru, whence ran an old track to Huia-rau and Rua-tahuna, and Te Upoko-o-Hiwera (named from an ancestor of Ruapani) to the sloping beach under Pukehou, where we again go into camp and pitch our tent, though the Kaumatua stoutly maintains that to pitch a tent in fine weather is to ask for rain.
As the white tents arise in this lone spot, and the sun sinks down behind the western ranges, fain would we speak of that scene at Te Puna, looking across the little bay backed by wooded hills; page 54 but human endurance has its limits, as also human patience. But the Pakeha, who sits by his tent-door on that golden evening, sees not only the scene before him, but those which have passed by long years ago. He sees the ancient land of Maahu, as Hau and Tams of old saw it—sees the lone lands, unknown of man and innocent of human blood. He sees the coming of the ancient people from the shadow-laden fatherland, and knows full well their deeds and Strange customs. He sees them multiply in the land, and the coming of war and strife—the smiting of the old-time people by the migrants of "Horouta."* He sees plainly the ancient kaingas by the lakeside, and recognises the men of old as they follow each his strange an. The trees have faded from the ancient forts across the shining waters, the palisades and great carved himu (posts) are again is place as of yore, the warriors are lashing the huahua (rails) and forming in line for the tutu ngarahu (war-dance). The tohunga, clad in sacred maro (girdle), approaches the tuahu (altar) to perform the holy rite of tira ora. The naked mass of bronze-hued warriors leap into life. Hark! It is the hoarse roar of the war-song which booms across the placid waters and echoes among the world-oil hills above.
The scene fades away, and then across the waters come the canoes of the men of old, carrying some chief to his last home on the "Sacred Isle." And as they paddle onward they chant an ancient lament for the dead, old as the days of Maui and of Taranga. They come to land as the first stars gleam in the calm waters beside them, the bearers take up the sacred burden, the priest wails forth a weird karakia (prayer), then the procession winds up the hillside and is lost to view in the glooming forest.
Long tails of fog were streaming up the gullies as we boarded "Mata-atua" for her third day's cruise, and the "Sacred Isle" stood out lone and distinct against a sea of mist.
Te Parua-o-Rora (the bowl of Rora): This point takes its name from a curiously-shaped stone at the base of the cliff. Paraharaha derives its name from a pool of black mud in which the flax-fibre was dyed in former times. As we pass out of Te Puna Bay, a singular effect of sun and fog is noted. The fog lies in a mass about 300ft. above the surface of the lake, and the sun shining through it imparts a beautiful golden hue to the mist beneath. We glide on to Pakinga-hau, a most suitable name for this place, and enter the Straits of Manaia. The mist breaks open and the sun flashes down on the face of the waters, following us quickly along the rocky coast and lighting up the forest above with a cheery gleam—to Te Upok-o-Hinewai, named from an ancestress of these parts who flourishes some twelve generations ago. So we turn our backs on the "Sacred Isle," and go forward over the shining waters of Te Kauanga-o-Manaia to Weka-ku, so called from an ancient member of Ngati-
* One of the early canoes, before the time of the fleet.
Rakaipaka, and once more pass over the broad surface of Waikare-moana. The waters are sparkling in the sunlight, and long streamers of silver mist lie against the wooded ranges under Ngamoko. In a little baylet over at Mokau, a wisp of blue smoke rises slowly from a camp of Natives, who have met here to perform some heathen ceremony in connection with taking the tapu off certain lands. A hail from the waters astern, and the next moment, shorn of her former glory and ancient beyond compare, "Hine-waho" swings past us on her way to the Hauhau camp.
Then the famous Ana-o-Tikitiki, named from a descendant of Kahu-ngunu. The "children" lay us alongside of the historic cave, and we look into the rocky chamber where so many of the women and children of Tuhoe went down to death. Then the equally famous Puke-huia Pa, now covered with forest growth, and no longer containing the fierce warriors of old—to Hau-taruke, a sacred spot in former times, for it was a toronga atua, the sacred altar of the gods Haere, Maru, Kahukura and Rongomai. Here came the priests of old bearing the sacred symbol of the god, a carved stick, which was stuck in the ground, and upon which the tohunga kept his hand as he uttered his prayers, and the atua would manifest itself by shaking the stick, and so give its decision. Past many ancient settlements, we pull in to the inlet of Whanganui and explore its many bays, so rich in old-time legend. At Tawhiti-nui we listen to the story of that ancestor who, after death, became a taniwha in the lake at this spot, though he does not appear to be of the man-eating variety. He simply appears to men, probably for the fun of seeing them run. Thus Te Waiwai, of Ruapani: "I was in my canoe, fishing for maehe at Tawhiti-nui, when I heard a strange sound, and two great waves came rolling in from the lake. Then resounded two loud reports like unto the cannon of the white men. Then I knew that the taniwha was angry. Friend! I quickly plucked a hair from my head and cast it into the water, at the same time uttering a karakia to render the demon harmless (hei whakaeo i te taniwha) and to calm the waters."
Here is Wai-mori Pa, at the head of the little bay where the Opu-ruahine Stream enters the lake, a picturesque spot and the scene of many an old-time fight in the days gone by; and the old battle-ground of Te Ana-putaputa, where the descendants of Ruapani went down before the "Children of the Mist." Here, also, a hundred feet from the shore, are strong springs of water, ice cold, gushing rapidly up from the lake-bottom. As we look over the side of the boat we can see the rush of the spring water from the lake-bed many fathoms beneath the keel of "Mata-atua." Here we appear to be in a small land-locked lake surrounded by high ranges, as the entrance is concealed by a projecting point; but on rounding this point we see before us the broad stretch of glassy waters reaching to far-away One-poto and Nga Hoe-o-kupe. On either side, the overhanging trees are clearly reflected in the calm waters, presenting a singular and lovely sight. As we pull on down the rugged coast-line page 56 towards Mokau, it is most interesting to note the strange [unclear: irregul] in the strata of the rocky cliffs, for here they are horizontal, [unclear: an] hundred yards further are vertical, a little further and they [unclear: ag] have a heavy list to port, if this scientific term be [unclear: allowable.] past the houses of the old-time people, and the bush-covered [unclear: an] silent forts of Pa Pouaru and Te Waiwai, where the [unclear: Kauma] breaks forth into a tangí for the ancient homes of his tribe and [unclear: t] who held them. Then he descends to the practical, nineteenth [unclear: tury] view of matters, as he says, "Should it happen that the [unclear: for] Whakaari and Puke-huia were to be at war with each other now, think that the men thereof would be able to fight without leaving [unclear: th] pas, for a bullet will travel a hundred miles—or is it a hundred yards?"
The beautiful Bay of Mokau is now before us, and we glide [unclear: ov] the sunny waters towards the entrance of the stream of the [unclear: sa] name. Here the prow of "Mata-atua," the much-travelled, [unclear: n] brought to land, and, while certain of the "children" remain [unclear: an] boat-guard, the rest of our party wend their way up the [unclear: stream] obtain a view of the falls. A fine sight are these same falls, for they are situated in a most rugged and picturesque gulch. From a [unclear: rav] about 25ft. in width, the mass of waters fall over a cliff about a hundred feet high, not falling directly into the great pool below, but [unclear: ou] to a huge projection of the cliff, a semi-circular abutment—which has the effect of spreading the falling waters out into a great which expanse of foam. The steep forest-clad ranges, rising abruptly from the water's edge, the bush-clothed cliffs, and singular strata all combine to present a most striking effect. To the right is a cave, by which a person may pass behind the great mass of falling waters, and on the left is a smaller fall, almost concealed by the dense timber-growth.
Then, after duly admiring this tine scene, we wend our way back to our gallant craft, but decide to take the creek-bed instead of following the trail, which runs along the sideling above. So we pull off our shoes and start gaily down the shingle bed; but it is sad as relate that our aboriginal guide was left far behind by the Pakeha in tramping over the stony channel. Verily an unworthy descendant of Rakaipaka this same guide—a tine fellow to join a war-party best on scaling rocky Huia-rau!
So we drift out again into the gleam of sunny Waikare, and down along the abrupt coast-line to Whakaari the renowned Whakaari of Mokoa and many another bold warrior of the [unclear: lo] ago. This historic pa is situated on a little point in a small semi-circular baylet, with bush hills rising behind—a truly beautiful spot in summer days. Near by is the promontory of Matuahu a striking land-mark, and where the sons of the soil closed in battle with the invading Pakeha in the troublous days of the sixties.
But the commissariat of "Mata-atua" has now grown some what slim, and we therefore decide to pull across to One-poto, and there camp. On landing we find the historic canoe "Hine-waho" drawnpage break page 57
up on the beach, the lone survivor of the fleet of former days which floated upon the waters of Waikare. She is about 60ft. in length, and presents a poor appearance, for the rauawa (top-sides) have long gone, and her wounds are many. So we camp down by the old pa Te pou-o-tu-mata-whero, which is near unto the walls of Herrick's Redoubt, on the spur above Te Kowhai.
The next day we elect to remain on shore, for a strong wind is blowing, and the Kaumatua as usual brings forth many proverbs and wise old saws to prove that it is not well to provoke the god, Tawhirimatea. So we stay by the land, and go out to look upon the homes of the old-time people and view the battle-grounds of old. "Friend," says the Kaumatua, "If we had a Pakeha canoe, what you call a buggy, we would go to Te Wairoa and look upon the lands of Te Tauira, but we shall view the Cave of Tawa, and look at that battle-ground where the Ruapani sank in death." So the Kaumatua and the Pakeha clamber round the rugged shore past Te Whangaromanga, and look upon the waters rushing down into unknown caverns below, to the cliffs of Ahititi, with their singular strata, symmetrically fissured, as if some Titan of old had amused himself by arranging here Cyclopean walls and buttresses, and strange overhanging table-rocks, the softer strata being worn out by the winds of many centuries; with caves and holes and strange chasms of uncanny aspect, an ideal spot for the cragsman. And we look upon Nga Hoe-o-kupe (the paddles of Kupe), which consist of a rock standing out in the water, a rock with singular vertical fissures dividing it. And here the Kaumatua points out Te Waka-o-Kupe (the canoe of Kupe), a sunken rock, which he declares is the canoe of that old sea-rover; and on a calm day you look down through the clear water and see the men of old seated therein, with paddles in their hands, as if waiting for their old commander to return from his wondrous voyages to far-away lands, and then they will once more go forth upon the dark ocean as of old, and follow the setting sun to his mysterious cave, and conquer the dread demons of the sea, by potent spells of fearful import, and sail down to unknown lands which lie beyond the sky, and see the strange men and strange products thereof, and camp again with Turi at Rangi-tahua, and meet the rising sun on the edge of the world, and lift again the old landmarks at Rarotonga and Tawhiti; and the golden days of the brave old world-finders shall return at last.
Then the old warrior goes on to tell of wars of old and many strange things which happened in former times, and also explained that Nga Hoe-o-Kupe is a rock possessed of great mana, for should any one strike it, the wind will at once change. Then we enter Te Ana-o-Tawaat the base of the great cliff, and in that spot, where the men of Ranga-ika strove against the warriors of Tuhoe land, the Kaumatua once more opens forth, and describes that Homeric struggle in vivid language and with appropriate gesture—"And that was how we slew the Ruapani in the old days. Then we and the taharua (people related to both sides) held these lands, which page 58 are now lone and deserted of man. In my young days, when I lived on the further shore, I could see that the hill above One-pato was covered with large whares (houses), and the great himu (posts) were standing. And in those days it was that I heard Tutaua, the log-demon, singing in the darkness of night. This Tutaua was a tipua (a spirit, a demon) in the form of a totara tree or log, which was placed in the lake by Hau-mapuhia, son of Maahu. This demos log was ever floating on the surface of the lake, ever drifting across the waters from place to place; and it sang strange songs as it floated upon the dark waters of night-ridden Waikare—songs of strange import were they. The people living upon the lake-shores would often hear these plaintive songs afar off. At such a time the old people would say, 'Ko Tutaua e waiata haere ana' (It is Tutaua, singing as it goes). I myself heard it at Rerewha, in my young days, singing in a strange voice, like the wind whistling. If the log drifted ashore, and should any person break or cut a piece of wood off it, Behold! the next morn that log demon had disappeared. Tutaua drifted away out of the lake through the outlet at Te Wharawhara when I was a lad—drifted away, singing as it went."
There is no holding him now; for the old fighter is once again started on the beloved subject of the men of yore—their deeds, evil and otherwise, in the world of light—and tale after tale comes of wars and sieges and priestly craft, as the Kaumatua drifts back over the stormy sea of his adventurous life, and greets again his old comrades of the war-path, and again takes his place at the camp-fires whose ashes have been cold for half a century.
Then we drift away from the historic Cave of Tawa and go back through the flying spray, with the roar of Hau-mapuhia in our ears, to the hill Raekahu, which stands above One-poto. And we ascend that hill to look upon the lands below, and the little lakelets, of Nga-whakatutu, Wherowhero, and Te Kiri-o-pupai. And here we stay awhile and observe that fine scene—