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The Sleeping Giant of Hawaii

Updated on May 31, 2013
The Sleeping Giant Island of Kaua'i
The Sleeping Giant Island of Kaua'i | Source
A markerThe Sleeping Giant Wailua, Kauai -
Sleeping Giant, Wailua Homesteads, HI 96746, USA
get directions

We put to sleep our own Gulliver centuries

ago. His horrendous appetite for poi

did him in. He serves us now

in a comatose state much more than we served

him in his waking moments. Reclining,

he holds vigil over Wailua, his belly

decaying with the cancer of erosion. We take him

for granted, remembering him only when the tourists

ask us for the legend. Embarrassed, we

make up stories. We have fallen asleep ourselves.

Soaring over the giant's mouth, scissors-tailed birds

forecast rain. The birds know the giant's secrets:

the cache of bones of long-forgotten ali'i; the

Lilliputian trails of menehune, merry architects

of the night; the cave where three Cub

Scouts carved their initials in 1962; and

one more...

the giant plays possum. And why not?

The days of legend have no place in a world

gone commercial.

And so sleep, fair giant,

sleep. The rain

falls on you and washes clean

the wounds of so much apathy. The dreams

are sweet, of long ago days when life was simple

and simple was less

and less was enough.

Sweet dreams,

the opiate of poi dreams,

the royal heritage of a giant.


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  • hawaiianodysseus profile image

    Hawaiian Odysseus 5 years ago from Southeast Washington state


    Hi, Jack! Sorry it took so long for me to get back to you. My wife and I were visiting some elderly shut-ins, something we enjoy doing on Saturday afternoons.

    Yes, the beautiful voice you hear in the video belongs to Keali'i Reichel. The song is Kauanoeanuhea. It perfectly complements the hiking video, don't you think?

    Those hikes certainly kept you in good shape, Jack. Thank you very much for the conservation work you did on the island. Have a great weekend!

  • Jackwms profile image

    Jackwms 5 years ago

    I quite enjoyed the poetry and the video. Is the music on the video Keali`i Reichel? It sounded like him and we have some of his CD's. We have many CD's, including one by the group Na Pali that we especially liked.

    Nounou Mountain/ Sleeping Giant has many memories, both from leading hikes up there and doing conservation work with Sierra Club.

  • Jackwms profile image

    Jackwms 5 years ago

    This is great. It reminds me of many walks up Sleeping Giant/Nounou Mountain, sometimes leading hikes, and sometimes doing conservation work with Sierra Club.

    I quite enjoyed the poetry.

    Is the music on the video either Keali`i Reichel or Uluwehi Guerrero?