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Whether it is "Redefining literary techniques and devices", "Justifying Papua New Guinea Literature", or "Translating the Bible into Anuki", these offer valuable reading for the paperless student of literature, and indeed the best sort of literary entertainment you can get out of Papua New Guinea. Check them out either on Soaba's Storyboard or The Anuki Country Press.

Saturday, 11 May 2013



Poetry plays an important role in so many ways. In times of war, upon the hour of sorrow or at a much happier occasion. Such poetry, or should we say poetic utterances, abound in Papua New Guinea. Poems by Papua New Guineans wishing to reflect upon all that is happening around them in their country. Whether it is about the persona relaxing along the shorelines of a rural setting, or the plight of women throughout the country, or simply Prime Minister Julia Gillard’s visit to Papua New Guinea, these utterances come to us as strikingly gentle as ever. Each one calls for attentive reading, its sense of humor, its sense of melancholy or foreboding, and it is well that Papua New Guinea poetry overall should sound that way.


We bring to our readers a special poem for an important occasion, and that is the National Haus Krai of May 15th, commemorating in total grievance the lives of those women lost upon our own shores and due to certain social ills that a government makes itself too powerless to control. The poem is “Thoughts of an Old One” by Seli Garap. We are pleased to re-print the full text of the poem here, with the author’s kind permission.





I am an antique, an artifact

My kind are rarely reared, a fact

In a society, to love and protect

In my time, mothers to Respect

My era, safety for women but perfect

In this day and age of disrespect

The western influence side-effect

Now my granddaughters I must over-protect

Society’s willful neglect?

Let us with our forefathers’ values resurrect

Let the National Haus Krai take effect

Let not in vain be the lives wrecked

Papua New Guinea let us unite and reflect

Long have we slept and our women wept

“Women Arise” PNG, stand up tall, not to accept





Prosing A While


I woke up by the sleeping seas

In a hut under a coconut tree

Listening to the waves calling my name

The daylights were slowly waking too

I reached out for my pen on the coconut mat

An began to pour out my dream

On a leaf of a dirty old paper


Stretched a tired arm

Yawned a baby’s yawn

And smiled my sleepiness away

The sun would shine

Oh yes it will

The Lord gives with reason   


Then the birds started to sing

Such glorious tunes never heard before

Danced on the branches nearby



Danced on the branches nearby


Yes I felt joy


Yes I was at peace


By Marie-Rose Sau





Look into my eyes

Far across the skies

The frequency ties

Come look into my eyes

There’s no surprise

We cannot disguise

Chemistry may not be wise

Just look into my eyes

Desire burns and fires

A thousand replies

Let me surmise

I will devise

A plan wise

You will look into my eyes…


By Seli Garap





Red-head chick arrives

A big splash in the water!

Roads temporarily sealed


By John Vada





I’d rather ride the six-foot wave out there

Than be intimidated by its roar

As it crashes on the beach here

So master of the wild billows

Teach me to swim out there

Beyond the shallows


By Steven-Senior Ilave



In reply to “Prayer”


Calm the waves

O master of wild billows

For ocean waves rage all over me

Throw me a lifeline

The peaceful shallows

May my feet rest!


By Roslyn PuruPuru


We thank the authors for their kind permission to reproduce their work here. All copyright including world rights remain with the individual poets represented above.



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