Alan ma Jan Literary Competition 2004

Rotuma High School, English Poetry

First Prize

Rose Mary Josefa


My eyes feel that they are glued
To this pristine scene in front of me
The swaying movement of the ship
Lulls me gently into unreality
Forgotten is the wretched retching
The empty feeling, and the reeling
The last minute grabbing at the railing.
Here at last, the longed for arrival.

A shimmering expanse of various blues
And aquamarine of different hues
My feet itch to skim over the sea
And touch that smile so warm and bright
Of a sandy beach so glittering white
Fringed by palms that beckon and wave.
Raising arms I reach out for their shade
To dive into air, then sea, in my haste.

Opening eyes into waters so very clear
In the greatest surprise I lose all fear.
Looking around in my new surroundings
Comes the knowledge that I cannot drown
The need for air forces me to surface.
Feeling exhilarated, I wipe water off my face
Giving myself courage to brave the swim
To the land I've seen only in a dream.

Greetings Rotuma, to you I have come
Across the oceans I have heard your call
And I can no longer wait, cannot ignore,
But I am like some flotsam washed ashore.
I have tasted your waters, kissed your shores
Give me time to know your lore, learn your mores
Give me a chance to show you my love
Then embrace me like a prodigal son.

Second Prize

Faga Mareta
Hapmafau, Itu'ti'u


The trees along this village street
Saved for the people and animals
Would make a sound familiar
As thin and sweet like sugarcane

And people resting in their shade
Feel the breeze playing on them
Would hear such music as is made
Upon a Rotuman tree

On little leaves that are so dumb,
Against the shrieking village air
I watch you when the wind has come
I know what sound is there,
Because I am a Rotuman.


Third Prize

Mathew Mua Penjueli


Long ago he came
On waves like mountains
hard as ice
Endless night and endless day
Paddled huge strokes
To find his prey

Through the gloomy and misty
Birds were a guiding hand
Sunrise to Sunset changed
him to a man like fire

Like a Flock, he saw a rock
with white sand, and tall greens
he edged his paddle closer
like the wind
At last, the prey made him stay.