Span: Journal of the South Pacific Assoc for Cwlth Lit and Language Studies
Number 36, 1992
Postcolonial Fictions:
Proceedings of the SPACLALS Triennial Conference 1992
Edited by Michèle Drouart

Poem: Karma

Kapal Tipoti

I'd been there. I'd been one of them, looking, whispering, thinking they were kolai because they'd been to the city. We thought they were too good now, and yet we thought our girls were city "prostitutes." We thought lots of things and we looked at them and we whispered to each other of them - from across the road.

I kept thinking badly of them until, in a group, we began to talk, them first, of course. Then I knew they were not kolai, not "prostitutes" but students learning for themselves, for our people.

Now I am one of the others and people look at me, and whisper, and think I am kolai. My mother, my friends, my people do not want me, do not speak to me.

But before me I see my spirit then, now, in the future and I am alienated - always alone.

New: 7 January, 1997 | Now: 20 April, 2015