Story: Kūmara

Kūmara whakapapa

This kūmara whakapapa (genealogy) shows how kūmara is descended from Rongo-māui and Pani-tinaku. Listen to an extract from Pō! Pō!, a waiata (song) by Enoka Te Pakaru, which refers to the origin of the kūmara. It translates into English as:

Pō! Pō!
My son, Tama, is crying for food!
Wait until it is fetched from the Pillars-of-netted food.
And the whale is driven ashore,
To give milk for you, my son,
Verily, your ancestor Uenuku will give freely.
Now listen! The kūmara is from the Beetling-Cliff-of-the-sun
Beyond the eager bounding strides of Tangaroa, God of the Sea;
Lo, striding to and fro is Tangaroa,
Tangaroa! Listen to his resounding roar!

Sound file from Radio New Zealand Sound Archives Ngā Taonga Kōrero. Any re-use of this audio is a breach of copyright. To request a copy of the recording, contact Sound Archives Ngā Taonga Kōrero (New Zealand Polynesian Festival 1986 – Waihirere, Gisborne/Reference number MPT 1390).

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How to cite this page:

Peter Adds, 'Kūmara - Religious aspects', Te Ara - the Encyclopedia of New Zealand, (accessed 29 May 2022)

Story by Peter Adds, published 24 Nov 2008