MC-050 Hawaiian Pueo Charm/Pendant
Pueo (Owl )
Original Design by Moses Thrasher
Pueo, designed and made by Moses Thrasher in 14K yellow or white gold. It measures 25 X 20mm (1" X 3/4") and weighs nearly 5 grams. Appropriate for men.
The pueo, or Hawaiian white owl is sacred to all who know it as their amakua, or ancestor god. Its sudden appearance is accepted as a magical and auspicious event by kahuna and kapuna alike. The pueo is still a theme in many local hula and spiritual ceremonies.
My encounter with the pueo is rather unconventional. Trying to get a photo or even getting close to this nocturnal beauty is out of the question. One day while driving to my studio in Lahaina, Maui, a bird flew out in front of my sports car so suddenly that I could not avoid hitting it. I felt so bad that I went back to see if it was OK. To my great surprise, it was pueo. What was it doing flying around in the middle of the day? I tried to help it and called everywhere I could think of to find someone to care for it, but it was too injured and died a few hours later. Once I realized it was gone, and not being one to miss an opportunity, I took great care to examine every wing, feather, talon, its head, tail, eyes, and beak. All these I entered into my sketch book for later reference.
You see, I had collected all the elements of the bird but one; Life! Movement and personality give my creatures the essence of life.
Eleven years later on the Big Island, while driving the upper road from Waimea to Kona at sunset, I looked out to notice a pueo flying along beside me. He veered off to the side of the road and landed on a fence post. I drove past and pulled over a little ways from him. I walked back with my camera and slowly approached. There he was, still perched on the post. Digital cameras have the characteristic of a delay from the time you press the button until the shutter opens. I thought for sure I had lost the shot when I saw him flying away after the shutter closed. To my amazement and joy, I had captured him lifting off the fence post in a most graceful pose. I hope you agree.