Aue Rona

Reihana Robinson


“This, then, is not the banal lyric-play which afflicts all too many of the effete bloodless wordsmiths of Aotearoa-New Zealand.”
Vaughan Rapatahana, Landfall Review Online.

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SKU: 978-1-877577-85-7 Category: Tag:


‘In this compelling first collection, Reihana Robinson offers a nuanced re-imagining of the Maori Rona legend through lyrical poems of love, transgression and sorrow that flesh out and challenge the archetypal notion of the woman in the moon.’
— Janelle Elyse Kihlstrom, editor of Melusine, or Woman in the 21st Century, an online journal of literature and art.

“I love the mythic, edgy vision of Reihana’s poems…”
— Joy Harjo, acclaimed Native American poet, musician & author

“Auē Rona e”. Rona cries out. In one swift move she is relocated to the moon. “Auē.” Who is there to hear her cries? This was from before the time of aeroplanes and space shuttles. It is a kind of forced migration but no refuge, just a never-ending misplacement and longing to be reunited with her two brats. She is rooted against her will. An endless struggle.  An endless suffering. “Auē Rona e.”

The traditional story of Rona and the moon opens as she is collecting water for her children. A cloud covers the moon; she falls, spilling the water, and she curses. As punishment she is torn from earth and taken to the moon, still clutching her calabash and holding a ngaio tree.  Aue? Rona. Oh Rona. Oh grief. Oh sorrow.

Read the review on Beattie’s Book Blog here.

About the author

Reihana Robinson has been widely published in New Zealand and internationally. She featured in AUP New Poets 3 (Auckland University Press, 2008) and her work has appeared in anthologies including Te Ao Marama: Comtemporary Maori Writing. Reihana was the inaugural recipient of the Te Atairangikaahu Award for Poetry. She is also an artist and an organic farmer.

For more information, visit Reihana’s website.

Additional information

Dimensions 148 × 210 mm