Maori Language Week: The haka

By Greg Taipari

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THE CHALLENGE: All Blacks loose forward Liam Messam leads the team in Kapa O Pango. PHOTO/
THE CHALLENGE: All Blacks loose forward Liam Messam leads the team in Kapa O Pango. PHOTO/

In August 2005, before the Tri-Nations Test match against South Africa at Carisbrook, the All Blacks performed for the first time Kapa O Pango - a new haka for and about the All Blacks.

Ngati Porou descendant and an expert in tikanga Maori (Maori culture and customs) Derek Lardelli wrote the haka. Its words and actions celebrate the land of New Zealand, the silver fern and its warriors in black.

Rather than replace the traditional haka, Ka Mate, Kapa O Pango sits alongside it.

Here are the words and its meaning from the All Blacks website:

Kia whakata hoki au i ahau.

Hi aue, hi.

Ko Aotearoa e ngunguru nei.

Au, au, aue ha.

Ko Kapa O e ngunguru nei.

Au, au, aue ha.

I ahaha.

Ka tu Te ihiihi,

Ka tu te wanawana,

ki runga i te rangi e tu iho nei, tu iho nei.

Ponga ra.

Kapa O Pango.

Pnga ra.

Kapa O Pango.

Aue hi.

Translation:

Let me go back to my first gasp of breath.

Let my life force return to the earth.

It is New Zealand that thunders now.

And it is my time.

It is my moment.

The passion ignites.

This defines us as the All Blacks.

And it is my time.

It is my moment.

The anticipation explodes.

Fell the power.

Our dominance rises.

Oru supremacy emerges.

To be placed on high.

Silver fern.

All Blacks

aue hi.

- Hawkes Bay Today

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