Ghosts Next Door

Ghosts Next Door
by Lopaka Kapanui

Sep 26, 2014

E Komo Mai

On the occasion of a new undertaking, one would assume that there should be chants and blessings as well as the gifts of garlands and scented flowers.  To accompany this, there should also be a gathering of the most delectable variety of foods such as the succulent meats from sea urchins and the most fattening fish.  Its compliment would be the sweetest poi from Waipio whose purple colored uniqueness is only matched by its partner, a black hiwa pig.  I can almost taste the smoked, salted meat and its buttery fat as it melts from the bones after steaming in the imu.  All of this fine, traditional cuisine serves to cause one to fall into a deep lethargic slumber.  Kanakattack.  Ah, such satisfaction after the stomach is warmed!

However, there is no such celebration of the kind.

Instead, I sit here on our bed where our granddaughter, Kawena, coos and giggles while her mother, Kimberly, dresses her after just taking a bath.  The television drones on as I am barely listening to a show about Bigfoot.  In the living room, I can hear my father-in-law’s baritone voice as he is having a conversation with my mother-in-law at the kitchen table.  The walls are thin between our room and the room that belongs to my wife’s niece, she sings along to Katy Perry’s Roar simultaneously hoping that the lyrics of the song will somehow manifest in her own being, as bleak as it may seem.

My wife awaits my arrival to bring her dinner at work where we will sit in her office and go over our needs, which have to be attended to in our business as well as our family.  Such an uneventful life for a man who constantly wanders the night in search of the otherworldly, I know, but consider that everyman is the sum of those who are constantly in his circle.  In my circle there are my wife and children and a circle that continually expands outwards to include mentors, teachers and friends who themselves have become family.

Therefore, for the birth of this blog I offer this…  I offer thanks to my wife Tanya; my equal, my rock, my partner, my love.  I offer thanks to my mother who made me all that I am so that I could be all that I have become.  I offer thanks to Glen Grant, a Jewish guy from Hollywood who was strict and unyielding as a mentor and compassionate and generous as a father figure.  I offer thanks to my daughter, Hiwa, who reminds me always that when I think that I am less than I am, I must remember that I created a miraculous life out of love.  I offer thanks to my teacher, my cousin, my link to my ancestors through ink and inspiration, Keone’ulaomaui Nunes.  I offer thanks to Paul and Sheila Kekuewa who took me into their home and their hearts, yours is a kindness that I can never repay but will spend my life trying.  I offer thanks to our sons, Kekoa, Keola, Makana and Kupono, the boys I always wanted.  I offer thanks to Renson, Aisha, Spencer, Paul, Lisa, David, Diego, DJ and Cristina.  These people, in such a short time, have become family to us and we love them dearly. If there are names that I have forgotten to offer thanks to, know that even though your name is not here on this blog, it is etched in our hearts and you know who your are.

E komo mai, welcome and pass on…

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