Don Blanding poem in English, 1939.

Don Blanding Dedicates Poem To Old Hawaiians

Don Blanding, Hawaii’s own poet, now visiting in Hilo, has finished a poem and dedicated it to “those grand old Hawaiians you see sitting on the doorsteps of the little houses along the road in Kona watching life go by, smiling.”

Here’s the new poem:

Tutu

“Tutu” is the affectionate Hawaiian name for grandparents or very old people.)

I would grow old as you are old, Tutu,
Seasoned with loving, mellow with gracious giving,
I would have hair like your grayed hair, Tutu,
Each silver thread a service stripe of living.

I would have eyes like your kind eyes, Tutu,
The veil of tears pierced by gay laughter’s twinkle,
I would have lips that smile like yours, Tutu,
A line from Life’s rich story in each wrinkle.

I would look back as you look back, Tutu,
Remembering all the good, the rest forgetting,
I would face death as you face death, Tutu,
Grateful of heart, undaunted, unregretting.

—Don Blanding

July 9, 1939

(Hoku o Hawaii, 7/12/1939, p. 6)

Don Blanding Dedicates Poem To Old Hawaiians

Ka Hoku o Hawaii, Volume XXXIV, Number 11, Aoao 6. July 12, 1939.

More on the originator of Lei Day, Don Blanding, 1939.

Don Blanding Dedicates this poem to the oldsters of Hawaii

This was translated into Hawaiian for the writer by Mrs. Mary Kawena Pukui of the Bishop Museum. These mele in English and Hawaiian will come out in the new book by Don Blanding, Drifter’s Gold, which will be published in the last week of September.

Tutu

WRITTEN BY DON BLANDING

E iini no au e kahiko aku e like me kou kahiko ana, e Tutu,
I ike i ka hua o ke aloha, i haawi oluolu aku,
E iini no au e like ko’u oho me kou oho poohina, e Tutu,
O na oho kuakea pakahi, he makana no keia ola ana.

E iini no au e like o’u mau maka me kou mau maka oluolu, e Tutu
I piha i ka waimaka a puka mai hoi ka aka ana,
E iini no au e loaa ia’u ka minoaka ana e like me kou, e Tutu,
O na alu pakahi o kou papalina, he waiwai i kaha ia e keia ola ana.

E iini no au e nana i hope e like me kou nana ana, e Tutu,
E hoomanao ana i na mea maikai, e hoopoina aku i ka nui,
E iini no au e nana aku i ka maka o ka make ana e like me oe, e Tutu,
Me ka naau hoomaikai, wiwoole a kaumaha ole.

(Hoku o Hawaii, 7/12/1939, p. 1)

Hoolaa o Don Blanding keia mele no na Hawaii kahiko

Ka Hoku o Hawaii, Volume XXXIV, Nuimber 11, Aoao 1. Iulai 12, 1939.