Beautiful writing from a friend on what it means to be an ally amidst the Mauna Kea movement, and how it’s linked to cultural erasure in poetry and in personal landscapes
Ally is a Verb: A Whale’s Song
by Rajiv Mohabir
I have had my land erased from me, he is being erased from his own land. When I was younger my family called my Raimie—a British name. When I first went to India I started going by Rajiv, my Indian name my parents gave me. I wandered my traditional fields feeling out for the calling of where they buried my ancestors’ navel string.
Bryan refers to himself as Kamaoli when he speaks Hawaiian.
To ally I must pectoral slap and fluke thrash against the ideas of “ally” and “settler.” These are convenient terms—they should be verbs. To ally: an action. It must be intoned in active voice.
These terms don’t hold the complexities of identity in assemblages—but they are a place where I can start my migration.
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