Sunday, October 9, 2011

Kalai pahoa

This is one of the Hawaiian poison gods. The story is that a sliver of wood from any of the poison gods, dropped in your food, would bring death. What surprised me about this particular image was the mo'o (lizards) tattooed on his face. Praying someone to death, and helping the process out with sprinkling the food with poison was one way to get rid of your enemy. The poison came from a special grove of trees on the island of Molokai. One of the sacred queens, Kalaniakauiokikilo, who had been taken captive by Kamehameha after the battle of Iao and ridiculed for years, finally took poison rather than live under his reign anymore.

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