HI000 + Uncle Eric Keawe

This week’s Spotlight Sunday is on Eric Keawe, a Native Hawaiian Practitioner.

I was walking on the beach enjoying the feeling of water washing over my feet when movement on my left hand side caught my attention. I turned my head to see a dark skinned man wearing a crimson malo (loin cloth) squat down into the water and begin moving his hands furiously.

If you don’t know, anytime you see a man wearing a malo (loin cloth) in Hawaii he’s some type of Native Hawaiian Practitioner- whether a singer, dancer, chanter or craftsman.

Instantly intrigued, I walked a bit closer to him to see what he was working on. In his hands I saw a ku’i kalo (taro pounder), a traditional implement used to create poi, a staple in the Hawaiian culture.

Of course, I had to go and talk with him.

I stepped up behind this dark skinned man and reached out to grab his head. Startled out of his trance, he turns towards me and I ask him if I can interview him and the ku’i kalo he was creating and he opened up to me.


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