Letter to the Editor | November 2023


Mahalo for so many wonderful articles about Lahaina in the October issue of Ka Wai Ola. So many memories were conjured for me, especially of my childhood.

Reading Hailama Farden’s “Mahalo Lahaina!” was like riding down Front Street to Nagasako’s in the backseat of Grandma and Grandpa’s old Datsun, listening to them talk about different things. My grandparents are the same Uncle Ned and Aunty Pua Lindsey mentioned in “Mahalo Lahaina!”

It wasn’t only the memories contained within and relived through those articles; it was the nuanced connections between them. Those connections demonstrate the power of generational memory and belonging to a place.

Moʻolele, the 42-foot long double-hulled sailing canoe celebrated in “Remembering Moʻolele o Lahaina,” was cared for by my grandparents and kept in their yard for many years. Ned Lindsey composed the song, Moʻolele, which was recorded by Makaha Sons of Niʻihau. Those verses are his poetry and storytelling, and his aloha for Moʻolele.

Like Hailama, I am transported to the Lahaina of my childhood, where I hear Grandpa on his ʻukulele singing a song he wrote about Polanui, our ʻohana home in Lahaina: “That is where I long to be, by the murmuring silvery sea, ʻneath the hau and the coconut trees, on the shores of Polanui.”

Hokulei Lindsey

Editor’s note: Mahalo nui e Hokulei for naming your grandfather, Ned Lindsey, as the haku mele (music and lyrics) of the song, “Moʻolele.” we are pleased to be able to give him the credit he deserves for composing this beloved mele and ensuring that Moʻolele o Lahaina will live on.