Meeting an Anthropologist

Pearlz Dreaming

annagope One of my Aunties – in her face I see my mother so clearly! 

Rotorua, in Aoteroa/ New Zealand, has one of those aromas that you can never forget and which is hard to escape. For me the strong smell of the sulphur is overtaken by an experience that has represented a watershed in the process of doing my thesis. Something I could never have foreseen.

The program in front of me has the words- “Beauty is in the Eye of the Beholder,” and the speaker is described as an American born Anthropologist whose major study has been in the Mekeo of Papua New Guinea. The theme of the conference is “Arts and Spirituality” and I am presenting some creative writing and story telling workshops on the theme of personal and cultural identity.

I want to meet the speaker before he find out whether he knows much about the village…

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Rowhani School Showing their Love for the Environment!

Images from Julian Bluett- Rowhani Baha’i School in Vanuatu, showing their concern for the environment.


Today I am thinking particularly of all those  youth and children in the Pacific showing their love for the environment.

By canoe,  by dirt roads through the jungles, by banners of love, joy, and unity, they add their voices to all those in the world.

Even a big problem becomes small if all care.

Just because the Pacific is few in people doesn’t mean they aren’t important to our whole world, and that their voices shouldn’t be heard.

Love to all!

Listen to our youth and change the world with them for the future.


Five Powers to Dealing with Racism

My family in the early days in Tasmania

It was amazing today to feel like an advocate for unity in diversity, and the power of poetry, love, and education.

I mentioned Maya Angelou, Nelson Mandela, my parents and the spiritual and cultural upbringing that has made me who I am today. Love will always lead us away from hate as a solution, and words on paper can have great power to release pain and lead to understanding!

Hope you can listen in to this story of my family, paying tribute to the courage of my parents and thinking about ways we can deal with racism.



My Family

For me there are five powers to dealing with racism: Power of poetry! Power of spirituality (faith) ! Power of love! Power of Education and Excellence!

Can’t quite believe where the journey of this kickstarter has taken me.  Thinking of my heroes like Maya Angelou and Nelson Mandela and also of the dear ones we have lost, like one of my brothers, and so many who have fallen partly due to the ravages of racism gives me so much passion to write and create art.

If you’d love to support Magic Fish Dreaming, and be on our blog honour roll, head over to THE KICKSTARTER

We have just 5 days to go, before the magic of producing the rest of the book begins!


Mum passing on culture


Grandpa’s Song


I love ‘Grandpa’s Song’ by Vika and Linda Bull, an Australian vocal duo with a Tongan family background  (their mother is Tongan.) This youtube link is not great quality but gives you an idea of the music video of the song.

A better audio of  Grandpa’s song is HERE


Vika and Linda were originally in the band, The Black Sorrows and went on to establish successful solo careers.

They credit their time in The Black Sorrows with giving them the confidence and skills to to do that as they learnt a lot from Joe Camillleri.

Their last album Liberation Blue was released in 2006, this song is from an earlier album Princess Tabu (1996), which was re-released in 2006.

I love this album and the way it infuses their culture, Tongan Australian background into the songs and all their various music influences.

This song was written for their grandfather, it is sung by Linda although it is Vika’s story. . . .
It tells of Vika aged five being picked up after school by her visiting grandfather, he had just arrived from Tonga.

He was a very proud and strong man and he turned up wearing a shirt, his Tupenu (a wrap or a long skirt ) and sandals on his feet. None of her school friends had ever seen anything like it, men were supposed to wear trousers. She was so angry and embarassed by him that she yelled that she would
see him at home.

She marched off and he followed, giggling to himself. To this day she says she regrets what she did. She shunned him for being Tongan and for what he was wearing.

Today she says that she is “proud of her Tongan heritage and of her Australian heritage, and thanks her parents for teaching her this.

(This information is on the Youtube video under the song)

You can read more about Vika and Linda HERE and of course on Wikipedia and the various interesting archived links provided at wikipedia which reveal a treasury of rock history online archives talking about these two artists.

If you want to purchase the CD Amazon has this ALBUM as well as ebay and a few other places.  It is considered a rare record.  Some of the songs from it are available to listen to on youtube, including Princess Tabu.

(Music Monday, the first in a series of sharing a  song  I love on a Monday.  Maybe not every Monday, but every Monday I am inspired by a song.)

The Ownership of the Yam Hole – My Oral History

Enjoy a visit to Joycelin’s blog where she is sharing some special stories about oral history.

Tribalmystic Stories

The Yam Hole – JK.Leahy memoir series

5567559375_8ec7b4d105_b A yam garden in PNG. Public Domain image.

Currently, the case of the Yam Hole (Ambisi) is an ongoing dispute amongst our people in Wagang Village, Lae, Papua New Guinea. The national government is negotiating with the villagers to build a large fisheries wharf on my village. Wagang is a small coastal village less than 20 minutes drive to the heart of Lae City. This is the story about the site of the proposed development which is referred to as Ambisi, or the Yam Hole. The Yam Hole is my family’s inheritance, but due to foul play, the authorities have been negotiating with other people who have claimed to own the land referred to as the Yam Hole. With the permission of my Uncle Ahe Max Mambu, I am proud to tell you this oral history and a story about the Yam…

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