Collaborators Q&A: Poet ku‘ualoha ho‘omanawanui: I work primarily with both Hawaiian and English; the first has a long rich history of oral tradition that underwent a transformation into writing in the nineteenth century—how does one take something spoken, performed, and fluid and fix it in print on a page? The act of translation between languages and mediums is always challenging but worth undertaking–it leads to finding and expanding meanings and sharing with different audiences. Artist Michele L’Heureux: I hadn’t considered that the artwork could divide the poem and its English translation, but I really love the way it looks on the page. It gives the palila bird a prominence that feels right, like she’s presiding over or even singing the poem.
Poet ku‘ualoha ho‘omanawanui is a Kanaka Maoli nationalist, scholar, aloha ‘āina advocate, poet, and visual artist born in Kailua, Ko‘olaupoko, O‘ahu and raised in Kaipuha‘a (Wailua Homesteads), Puna, Kaua‘i. Michele L’Heureux is a visual artist and digital designer who is obsessed with birds.