"Short space of rain, of no import." A chief, the husband of Huru-ma-angiangi. They dwelt together for a while and the time came when they expected to have a child. Huru-ma-angiangi felt a longing for a bird, and asked her husband to bring her some birds to eat. Poro took his bird-spear and went into the forest, but did not obtain any of the kinds of birds usually eaten. Instead, he brought back two living birds, one of which was a huia and the other a kotuku. These she would not eat, but kept as pets. Shortly after he went to reside at his other home, while his wife remained at her place. At the right moon she had a son who was named Tau-tini-awhitia.

When Tau-tini grew up he inquired of his mother where his father was. She told him that he lived far away, in the direction of the sunrise. So he went in search of his father and eventually arrived at his village. There he became the property of a little boy, who was also a son Poro-ua-no-ano, by another mother. The father was much pleased at the new acquisition of his child, and said, "Take him away to dwell in the scrub."

One day, soon after this, while the boys of the settlement were playing, Tau-tini went into the forest and caught two birds, a huia and a kotuku. These he each taught to say a certain phrase, and let them into the chief's house at night. The sleepers all awoke at the shrill cry and human words uttered by the birds. Poro-ua-no-ano rose up and stood looking for some time in silence. He at last exclaimed, "Verily this lad is my son, for those birds are of the very kind which his mother longed for." He with his own nose pressed that of his son, and wept over him and rejoiced. At the dawn of day he took his son to a stream of water and chanted the incantation and performed the usual and proper ceremonies fitting for a chief's son.



  • White, John. (1887). Ancient History of the Maori. 6 vols. Wellington: G. Didsbury, Government Printer, p. 2:173 ff.

This article incorporates text from Ancient History of the Maori (1887) by John White, which is in the public domain.