Topic: Waiata by Peter Hodge

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Waiata by Peter Hodge was one of six finalists in the Battle of Gate Pā Poetry Competition (2014). The poem was read aloud at the Prize Giving and Awards Evening held at Elizabeth Café & Larder at 5.30pm on Thursday 6 March 2014.


This is the line we drew
A gateway between me and you
A place to make our stand
To stop you invading our land
These are the trenches we dug
Now all filled with mud
A hole to hide our selves
From the exploding shells
These are the walls you breached
Looking for the victory you seek
But you die in our trap
Defeating your attack
This is the mercy we showed
After we gave you a decisive blow
The water we freely gave
For your life to be saved
This is the track we took
A place you did not look
To escape your net
That was not fully set
This is the last battle we fought
Giving you the victory you sought
Our men marched straight at you
Your aim was deadly true
This is the mass grave you made
To bury our men that were brave
We mourn their loss
And count the cost
I remember them  all
I watched them all fall
Now in spirit I tend those lost
A song of reconciliation and trust

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Waiata by Peter Hodge