AROUND TE AHUAHU
When they were in the pa by Omapere lake
Papahurihia made them build a council house
which by prayers and powers he would protect
notably from cannon fire.
Eight chiefs sat in the house consulting.
A cannon ball sailed right through it,
smashing muskets which were piled together.
"Someone" — this is what is told, Papahurihia
said — "has smoked his pipe in here.
Gods get annoyed when men don't know how to behave."
They built another council house.
Papahurihia promised his prayers and powers to protect it.
A shell blew the roof off.
"Someone took cooked food into the house,
maybe not in his hand, perhaps he was still chewing
when he went to the council meeting.
Some men don't know how to behave properly."
They didn't do any more building.
Almost all Papahurihia could do was warn.
A lot of fighting. At Whatitiri
Te Kahakaha was killed. Old Wharepapa rallied the Ihutai,
he wanted to preserve Te Kahakaha's body.
A boy ran to Heke on the far battle front:
"The body of Te Kahakaha will be taken!"
Heke threw off his cloak. He threw away his gun.
Naked he sprinted right across the front.
The left wing was collapsing.
Only Ihutai stood fast. They charged against Taonui.
Heke snatched a cartridge box from a corpse.
He saw Papahurihia trying to stop men who fled,
trying to turn them round. Heke ran,
Papahurihia had gathered perhaps twenty men.
"Go forward, gather up Te Kahakaha!"
"Give me a gun and some cartridges," Papahurihia answered
him, "I have only a club,"
and Heke replied,
"Get a gun from somebody" and began
to buckle the cartridge box and belt round Papahurihia's
Who saw blood on the box.
Heke had offended.
He ran with some to gather up Te Kahakaha.
Papahurihia stayed where he was.
He knew they were lost.
Where was Heke?
Taonui was advancing again.
"Heke has fallen." Hoao put him into a hollow
covered with fern.
Te Popoto men came on. Papahurihia and three with him
passed through Taonui's skirmishers.
Papahurihia prayed and sang.
He did what was right, so his god stayed with him.
The others must have done what was proper too,
they were all elderly men so you might expect that.
Taonui's men were not allowed to see them.
They carried Heke to shelter.
Days and days.
It didn't look as though Heke was going to live.
Well, not if he stayed in that place.
He was taken to Kaikohe, he was taken to Ngawha
to the springs,
smuggled off to Tautoro,
Papahurihia and sixty stayed with him there.
He was not at Ohaeawai when things were done
to bodies of the Queen's men.