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1ST APRIL 2007

1st April 2007

Tenakoe Hinerangi…We are still caught up in the up-draught of your hui…this gentle eddy is powered by the will of people coming together to soar…innocence is a powerful force.

The highlight for me is watching the faces of all those gathered as they threaded on everyone's Prayer Flags and watching them as their flags were hoisted high and started flapping the breeze.

All sending out their different wishes…from all cultures all creeds…together with The Wind chimes the messages of hope…longsuffering…joy…peace…love…unselfishness were vibrating out every time each flag whipped…wind horses carrying important messages far and wide and forming part of the consciousness.

Last night I had a visitor…she had just came from her art graduation. In the moon-light she walked under the prayer flags…they were flapping in the wind. The chimes were playing their special music…together with the huge rocks and Pou Whenua she said it was as if she was transported high up in The Himalayas

I'm sure The Dalai Lama won't mind.

27TH MARCH 2007

Tenakoe e taku tama Sean…Thanks for your e-mail and kind words.

All of my children are so different and see the top of the mountain from their view. Your view is similar to mine in that we maori lost much in the mix.

This negative control is manipulated by so very few…to throw another negative force against it would result in much chaos. Whereas, if we meet the negativity with a positive force then there is a strong chance of harmony.

Wairua is the balance of the opposites…we need this listen hard to our babies they are often the balancers…some, like your/our Ruka is one of those…she was sent to us.

Love you my son.

15TH MARCH 2007

To my beautiful mokopuna Ruka.
Kia ora koe moko…Saw your letter to me on Guestbook.

What a good idea writing to your grand parents and asking them to write back…I love it.

You are a very important part of my life…you make my life richer…you keep me in touch with the real reason I am here.

Mucho aroha and kisses…Koro Bruce


Tenakoe Dean…love your story The Fuzz and Mrs Sheppard on Guest Book.

For most Marae you can only be Tangata Whenua by toto (blood descendants) …a woman buries the whenua of her baby on her Marae claiming ‘tangata whenua status’ (and security) for her child…whangai (adopted) don’t usually have the same status as toto.

However they do for me as I am a whangai and feel deeply ‘the not having quite made it’ dilemma of a whangai…for me the whangai has the same status as toto.

Trouble is…there are those on the Toto list who make little or no contribution to their Marae…so for me another principal kicks in ‘The Mana belongs to those who stoke the fire’

You Dean have a special place here…your knowledge and passion set in place important principals for our native reforestation…our outdoor cathedral.


Tonight at our local pool there was a small invasion of our Samoan whanau, mostly kids…they were wooping and yahooing more than usual…they had good reason.

Yesterday Samoa won The International Seven Tournament here in Wellington.

It is pretty good when you compare their population of 180 000 to others in the competition like NZ, Australia and USA…and that’s after all the other ‘big’ countries have creamed off their top players.

By in large NZ has not treated them with respect…1918 they lost a 5th of their population with the flu…partly due to mismanagement of NZ Govt…then there was Black Friday 28.12. 29 when the NZ Police fired a Lewis machine gun and sailed into unarmed civilians with batons…killing 10 and injuring 50.

I remember with shame…being in the courts when first up was our NZ Police herding their ‘dawn raid’ catch…old Samoan ladies and men without their early-morning medication coughing and being helped by the young ones into the dock..

Samoans have done us proud…their hitting power has lifted our All Blacks to a high place and gone a long way to securing the World Cup here.

I can still hear those Samoan kids shouting…”Mano Samoa Mano Samoa!!!…plus their big beautiful smiles…still come up clearly on my screen.


Piari…have just read your comments on Guest Book…what a lovely surprise after so long.
You have been one hell-of-a-battler girl, twelve kids that’s a real big brood for these days…we’re almost the same…you have six of each…I have six girls, seven boys.
Then there are the ones like you…you’re like whangai to me.
It’s good you’ve managed the ‘hard yards’…you must be made of good stuff cause not a lot of people can handle it.
Ae…it’s good to bottom out now and again ‘cause one gets a clearer view from there.
Love the part of your letter that says…
“I'm learning something new everyday and I love my life and would not trade it in for anything.”
Yes I’d love to see you’s all…sooner is better, you have your Marae here.

Aroha kia koutou na Bruce


I am father to thirteen children…my daddying in the past hasn’t been all that great.
It is all about what building you lean your ladder against…at last it is leant against the building marked whanau (family)
I love being with this latest brood of three…Parehinetai, Hirini Hikimutu and Kirihika…and now, when I look at their names…it is a reflection of where you are as a person at naming-time.
The biggest problem is my age and disability…I have said to them…an antelope in Africa has to be born running…why, ‘they asked’…otherwise something will eat it.
‘You are all like that because I am not going to be around to protect you…you are going to have to do it yourselves. So every day is a learning day…there are no shortcuts…no easy way.
Yesterday the knob of our front door came off…Parehinetai rummaged through a box of assorted screws to find four suitable in length and gauge…she selected the correct screw-driver…now we have a door we can get into…she is only thirteen.


I am still rattled from the visit of some eighty Manuhiri (guests)…Te Kura Kaupapa Maori o Te Rotoiti…a School of full immersion in Maori.
1974, I stayed on one of their Marae…there was only one shop…so I was expecting a small, quite Ope (guests)…instead a vigorous livewire group turns up.

I spoke to them about our Marae…why I am here…about my journey…about how far are we willing to go, to make it all happen.

When I finished…these young ones…the oldest couldn’t have been more than twelve…jumped up as one...instantly in full haka mode…their haka was so full of ihi (power of conviction) it shook the rivets that hold my soul together…left me speechless.

No make up or piupiu…it wasn’t a competition or a grandstand of eighty thousand…there was just a had-it-old man…holding on fast to his dream…one who can’t walk without his sticks...
Says heaps about their parents…their Kaitiaki (teachers)…their Tumuaki, (principal) Hawea Vercoe.
30th December 2006…I’ve had time to think about their visit…their haka was their own full and ultimate expression of being Maori…similar to The All Blacks haka under the stadium in Wales.

It is bigger than dollars or entertainment…True, I have enjoyed days of competition kapa haka…from my view this was bigger...bigger too because it has come back from the brink of oblivion...the real deal.


Over the last three days we have had an ope (group) of Aboriginal people from Groote Eylandt (Dutch name) their own name is Angurugu…it is an island off the coast of Northern Territory, Australia…it is very remote.

When I first saw them my first reaction was ‘black is certainly beautiful’ and I was overcome with feelings of awe mixed with privilege…they appeared to be the pure 40,000 year old originals…their remoteness has saved them in many ways…they are The Anindilyakwa people…they speak full time in their soft gentle sounding tongue.
They own their Island and are self-governing…there are 16,000 of them and they are well off because they retain their own culture plus a good deal was stuck for them with a German Mining Company by resident Dutch Missionaries…they extract and export 2 million tons of manganese a year.
They were happy to go to New Zealand until they found out it was another country…ae, innocence is the word that springs to mind…


This Whare is my Mum…I know it is almost the same as the pakeha houses on each side of us…made out of wood, glass and roofing iron…but like the devout catholic views the wine and the wafer…we see this whare as Mum…Parehinetai o Waitaha.

Manuhere Maori (maori guests) say… “Atamarie Kuia, ataahua koe, mahana koe…”

(Good morning with respect old lady, you are beautiful and warm…)

Many thousands have come and gone.

I’ve gone back to live with my Mum and for me it is the way forward…plus I love it.