Ghosts Next Door

Ghosts Next Door
by Lopaka Kapanui

Nov 29, 2022

Lepo'ula 2022

Rust-colored dirt beneath my feet interspersed with flakey salt deposits.

I asked George if there was ocean water beneath the red dirt baseball field, to which he laughed and began explaining the living history under my feet. His words brought forth the color of a bright yellow mantle of Kapa. Usually, such a bright color would evoke a feeling of bright happiness, but there was a sanctity to this particular yellow hue. It was powerful, sacred, and very much alive. In keeping with George's descriptive storytelling, he evoked the image of a Hawaiian woman with such mana that she was considered part human. The other part of her was of an otherworldly incarnation known as a Moʻo wahine, a female reptilian being often times revered by her caretakers but overall feared for what she could do when provoked or when her kapu were not observed. 

"This red lepo you're standing on is landfill," George said. "Beneath you is her home, where she dwells at will,"

Imagine my surprise and fear at hearing this. At once, I apologized for defiling such a sacred place with my filthy feet. George assured me that there was nothing to worry about. "She knows who's who," George laughed. "You good, brah, no worry."

The location is Moku'ula.

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