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Songs that celebrate Matariki: Te Rahu Tapu a Tāne

Te Rahu Tapu a Tāne

By Te Whānau o Te Aute Kāreti

(Sing this waiata to the tune of Royals by Lorde.)

Tātaia ki runga rā, ko te kāhui kahurangi
Tīwhaia ki runga rā, ko te Matariki, e pīata (e pīata mai)
Unuhia te rahu tapu a Tāne, ko ngā whetū kōrikoriko e pīata mai rā (e pīata mai)
Unuhia te rahu tapu a Tāne, ko ngā whetū kōrikoriko e pīata mai rā (e pīata mai)
Waitī, Waitā, rurenga a tau, Tupuānuku, Tupuārangi
(Tupu mai te hua) hua, Waipunarangi, Ururangi, anohi o te iwi!

Matariki ahunga nui, Matariki tāpuapua
Matariki kanapanapa, i te poho o Ranginui (e pīata mai)
Unuhia te rahu tapu a Tāne, ko ngā whetū kōrikoriko e pīata mai rā (e pīata mai)
Unuhia te rahu tapu a Tāne, ko ngā whetū kōrikoriko e pīata mai rā (e pīata mai).

The star cluster of the cloaked blue sky now arranged
Matariki placed permanently above, shinning
Tāne opened his sacred basket, the outpouring of the twinkling stars, shining
Tāne opened his sacred basket, the outpouring of the twinkling stars, shining
Waitī, Waitā, remnants of the year, Tupuanuku, Tupuarangi
(The fruits of creation flourish), Waipuna-a-rangi, Ururangi, anohi o te iwi!

Matariki of procreation, Matariki of many water pools
Matariki gleaming upon the chest of Ranginui (shinning)
Tāne opened his sacred basket, the outpouring of the twinkling stars, shining
Tāne opened his sacred basket, the outpouring of the twinkling stars, shining

About this waiata

This catchy waiata was composed by Ruth Smith of Nūhaka in 2013 with students of Te Aute College, a boys’ only Anglican Māori boarding school in Pukehou, Hawke’s Bay. The school has many famous ex-pupils, including Sir Howard Morrison, Sir Pita Sharples, Norm Hewitt, and Piri Weepu.

This waiata is sung to the tune of Royals by Kiwi musician Lorde. It was originally composed as part of the students’ waiata tira (choral item) for the 2014 National Secondary Schools Kapa Haka Competition held in Gisborne.

The waiata celebrates the stars of Matariki. The word rahu, used in the song, is another word for kete. Rahu and kete both mean basket. The song talks about the baskets of knowledge in Māori mythology.