Following the extraordinary response to my two articles on Hawaiian gods and goddesses I decided to start periodic entries on some of their other deities. For my first article on Hawaiian mythology click here: https://glitternight.com/2011/02/20/the-top-eleven-deities-in-hawaiian-mythology/
And for the second article click here: https://glitternight.com/2011/03/02/eleven-more-deities-from-hawaiian-mythology-2/
KAPO – This Hawaiian goddess is one of those deities that a great deal of overanalysis is written about, usually in a hilariously frantic fashion by people who try to present THEIR interpretation of her as “the one true” interpretation. She has some affiliations with witchcraft, mediums and possessions.
In some myths she is called the mother of the love and fertility goddess Laka (credited with inventing the hula dance) but in other myths both she and Laka are sisters of Pele. I would usually not bother listing a deity whose attributes are so vague that they get debated with all the silly intensity of Trekkies arguing about Romulan “history” but I’m listing this goddess because the one constant in the Kapo saga is the odd story about how she detaches her vagina and throws it to distract Kamapua’a, Pele’s husband.
In some versions this is done when Kamapua’a first comes to marry her and in others it’s when Pele is “not in the mood” and Kapo throws her vagina to distract Kamapua’a, who chases it until he smashes into a cliffside Wile E Coyote style. The vagina, like Thor’s hammer, then returns to its owner.
Other myths depict Kapo detaching her vagina and having it fly around and swallow whoever she wants it to when she “hexes” those people.
I think someone should produce Kapo action figures complete with detachable vaginas! By the way, there is a HILARIOUSLY overwrought and bitter interpretation of the Kapo/Pele/Kamapua’a tale on the internet written by a very humorless and man-hating woman who is so naive about mythology that she actually thinks there is only one version of this myth. It will have you laughing hysterically if you come across it.
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18 responses to “HAWAIIAN GODDESS OF THE DAY: KAPO”
Very interesting read again, although I’m not entirely sure about those action figures you’re talking about – who do you think would collect/play with them? 😛
I agree that it is a bit naive to believe that there’s a single, ‘official’ version of any myth.
LOL Are you kidding? They’d probably sell out in a minute flat! Yeah and naive is putting it nicely. One of the reasons I love to list my umpty-zillion reference books on my mythology pages is to drive home the point that myths change over time.
this is really interesting, thanks for posting!
Thank you for commenting!
What!!!??? One the one hand I am thinking of RobRoy and some stories of warrior women in history presenting boobs to distract the enemy.
On the other hand I am picturing the scary animation from Pink Flyds the wall where in the overbering mother figure swallows the ‘babe.’
Either way this Kapo figure sounds like someone not to mess with. I wonder if she was also a bad mother in law?
Ha! If she did she probably would have just thrown her vagina at her to swallow her up – end of arguments. I can’t believe the Hong Kong or Indonesian film industries haven’t made a movie or two with detachable vaginas that swallow things.
I bet they have. Your just too wise to go looking.
Ha! I don’t know if “wise” is the word, though.
I knew a woman years ago who used to brag about making a sculpture of her vagina….maybe she’s a descendant of Kapo. (chuckle)
Ha! Could well be, or at least a priestess of her. I’m surprised the Wham-O corporation never got the idea to sell detachable vaginas that people could throw back and forth.
Yay! An article on Kapo. I have a book that suggests Laka and Kapo as two sides to the same goddess and I chose her as one of the supporting cast in an adaptation of Pele’s origin myth I’m writing. I took that suggestion and adapted her to be Laka/Kapo two personas with completely different powers using the same body. Kapo is very much a super feminist in my story and I keep thinking of scenes in which Laka, the fertility goddess that she is beds a guy and Kapo wakes up in the morning next to him completely outraged at her other personality.
Well, thank you very much for stopping by! Your story sounds interesting! Good luck with it!
Very odd myth.
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