The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #81449   Message #1491524
Posted By: Haruo
23-May-05 - 03:44 PM
Thread Name: Lyr Add: Aloha 'oe / Farewell to thee
Aloha 'oe
Queen Lili'uokalani, 1878 (or 1877), pub. 1890 (sheet music cover)

My main source (thanks to Q) is but I have also noted below the text the textual variants at (I don't know enough Hawai'ian to judge in most cases.)

Ha'aheo ka ua i nā pali
Ke nihi a'ela i ka nahele
E hahai (uhai) ana paha i ka liko
Pua 'āhihi lehua o uka
Aloha 'oe, aloha 'oe
E ke onaona noho i ka lipo
One fond embrace,
A ho'i a'e au
Until we meet again
'O ka hali'a aloha i hiki mai
Ke hone a'e nei i
Ku'u manawa
'O 'oe nō ka'u ipo aloha
A loko e hana nei

Maopopo ku'u 'ike i ka nani
Nā pua rose o Maunawili
I laila hia'ia nā manu
Miki'ala i ka nani o ka lipo

Here are the variants in the text at

1:1 pāli (for pali)
1:2 a'ele (for a'ela)
1:3 uhai (for hahai (uhai) )
Chorus:4 A hui hou aku. (for Until we meet again)
2:1 aloha ka i (for aloha i)
2:3/4 (line break omitted; I think is right on this)
3:3 ho'ohie (for hia'ia)
3:4 o ia pua (for o ka lipo)'s English version (translated purportedly by Queen Lili'uokalani) follows; as I have always seen it titled "Farewell to thee" and am inclined to think "Farewell to you" is a recent modernizing emendation, I am disinclined to trust on the rest of the Queen's English:

Farewell to you

Proudly swept the rain by the cliffs
As it glided through the trees
Still following ever the bud
The 'ahihi lehua of the vale
Farewell to you, farewell to you
The charming one who dwells in the shaded bowers
One fond embrace,
'Ere I depart
Until we meet again

Sweet memories come back to me
Bringing fresh remembrances
Of the past
Dearest one, yes, you are mine own
From you, true love shall never depart

I have seen and watched your loveliness
The sweet rose of Maunawili
And 'tis there the birds of love dwell
And sip the honey from your lips further gives the following background note:
Source: Jonathan Wong - This song of farewell between two lovers is the most famous of the Queen's compositions, written in 1878. The tune of the verse resembles "The Rock Beside the Sea", composed by Charles Crozat Converse and published in Philadephia, 1857. The melody of the chorus is remarkably close to the chorus of George Frederick Root's composition, "There's Music In The Air", published in 1854. There is a manuscript of "Aloha Oe" in Queen Lili'uokalani's handwriting in the Bishop Museum. Lahilahi Webb and Virginia Dominis Koch tell of a visit by the queen and her attendants to Maunawili Ranch, the home of Edwin Boyd on windward Oahu. As they started their return trip to Honolulu on horseback up the steep Pali trail, the queen turned to admire the view of Kaneohe Bay. She witnessed a particularly affectionate farewell between Colonel James Boyd of her party and a lovely young girl from Maunawili. As they rode up the steep cliff and into the swirling winds, she started to hum this melody weaving words into a romantic song. At the top of the pali, a cloud hung over the mountain peak and slowly floated down Nu`uanu Valley. The queen continued to hum and completed her song as they rode the winding trail down the valley back to Honolulu. Translation by Lili'uokalani gives the following alternative background:
It is said that Queen Lili`uokalani composed "Aloha O`e" in Maunawili in 1877 after witnessing the fond parting embrace of two lovers, one of whom was probably her sister, Likelike, who later married A. S. Cleghorn. The final verse mentions the rose blossoms (nĂ  pua rose) at Maunawili. Liliu`okalani intended "Aloha O`e" as a love song; but it became a song of farewell.

Paul Bennemann's Esperanto version is here.