Friday, 24 May 2013

Houhia and the luscious fruit (No. 96)

A story of Ahu and Ahuahu and their family in a Maori village in Aotearoa during European settlement of New Zealand. (Click on Ahu in the labels bar for previous posts)

Houhia tried not to think of Tiemi all the time now that he was no longer in the village.  She managed this during the day but when she went to sleep at night her dreams were often of the times when they explored the forest together finding the plants for him to list and take samples of. She remembered her time searching for the different trees and pointing out the insects and other creatures with him. When they were alone or if Hinewai was not near he would also ask about the other wildlife there too.

Once he heard a bird call he asked, “Is that a Kaka?”

Houhia laughed, shook her head and said, “No, that is a kokako. The kaka is a parrot lives in the forest where the tall trees are cut and where Moana’s mother lives.” She pointed in the direction that she was referring to even though Tiemi was not sure which way they were facing as he couldn’t see the sun. She then looked about her then spied one the birds that he had seen on a branch. “See there it is. It is smaller than a Kaka and look it has wattles on its cheeks. See how it is looking for the flowers to eat. It loves fruit too but it will also eat insects.”

Tiemi all the time was looking at Houhia, when she noticed this she lowered her eyes and looked away but continued talking. “When they find fruit they will try it but if not satisfied they will try another one until it is ripe enough to eat.”

“The English world is luscious Houhia,” Tiemi said, “You are luscious, your eyes sparkle, and you are bursting with energy and you are a strong and beautiful young woman.”

Houhia lowered her eyes, so she didn’t show that she liked to hear him say those words. She turned around and looked for Hinewai and called out for her. Not far away Hinewai called back. “I am coming”

When Houhia looked back at Tiemi, he was still smiling at her. “Please don’t talk to me this way,” she said.

“Don’t you want to be admired, Houhia?”

“You are only playing with me, Tiemi.” Although she said this she saw the fire in his eyes and that he was desperate to touch her. She was wondering what that would be like when Hinewai returned.

Houhia then said, “Hinewai, Tiemi said that he thought he saw a Kaka but I told him they could only be seen in the forest where Torangi your husband works as wood cutter. Perhaps you could take him there.”

Immediately Tiemi saw that he had been outplayed and interjected. “No it is not so important.”

Houhia remembered this and wished now she had not called Hinewai but instead let Tiemi talk more to her, perhaps touch her and say what he thought of her and how luscious she was. With that she fell asleep.


  1. Poor Houhia has got it bad for him. I hope it turns out that he is actually a worthy man and he comes back for her.

  2. Nice...I can feel Houhia's feeling. Hopely, they'll be together

  3. Looks like Houhia's regretting. Tiemi seems serious..

  4. I love the picture of life you paint through the natural world, what a setting for love :-)

  5. She may see things differently when she wakes. Beautifully told.

  6. It must be nice to have romantic dreams - in mine I just keep getting lost in unfinished, grey concrete buildings.

  7. It will be interesting to see what happens next.