Makalapua [Beautiful] (No Date)
Arranged By Moon Kauakahi
Orchestrated By David Kauahikaua
Originally written as a “mele inoa” or chant in honor of the Queen, the song’s composer or originator is in dispute, with several possibilities as to who actually penned the words and for what occasion. It was said to have been written the night before the Queen’s birthday and sung to her early the next morning by Naha Hakuʻole, one of her descendants, along with Mary Adams Lucas and Mrs. Auld. It was the Queen, however, who set the words to a tune by Carlo Bosetti that was popular in the late nineteenth century. The places mentioned in “Makalapua” are sites on Oʻahu, and wind names associated with Oʻahu, since this was the island of her birth. (Moon Kauakahi)
ʻO Makalapua ulumāhiehie
ʻO ka lei o Kamakaʻeha
No Kamakaʻeha ka lei na Liʻawahine
Nā wāhine kīhene pua.
Haʻihaʻi pua kamani paukū pua kī
I lei hoʻowehiwehi no ka wahine
E walea ai i ka waokele
I ka liko (i) o Maunahale.
E lei hoʻi, e Liliʻulani ē
E lei hoʻi, e Liliʻulani ē.
Lei Kaʻala i ka ua a ka nāulu
Hoʻoluʻe ihola i lalo o Haleʻauʻau
Ka ua lei kōkōʻula i ke pili
I pilia ka mauʻu nēnē me ke kupukupu.
Lei aku i nā hala o Kekele
I nā hala moe ipo o Malailua
Ua māewa wale i ke oho o ke kāwelu
Nā lei kāmakahala o ka ua Waʻahila.
*Compiled by Michael-Thomas Foumai. Digitally published for the Hawaiʻi Symphony Sheraton Starlight Series on June 4-6 2021.
Beautiful, increasing delightful
Is the wreath of Kamakaʻeha
For Kamakaʻeha, a lei made by Liʻawahine
And by women with baskets of flowers.
Kamani and tī flowers woven together
As a lei to adorn the woman
To be at ease in the cool forest
In the leaf buds (at) of Maunahale.
Wear the lei, O Liliʻulani
Wear the lei, O Liliʻulani.
Kaʻala is wreathed by sudden showers
That pours down on Haleʻauʻau
The rainbow-wreath rain on the pili grass
Drawing together the pili and kupukupu.
Wear the pandanus of Kekele
And the sweetheart pandanus of Malailua
The kāwelu grass sways
The kāmakahala leis of the Waʻahila rain.