Monthly Archives: September 2010


Hawaiian culture has many signs and omens still observed today. Rain and rainbows are considered blessings from the gods.

Ua is the Hawaiian word for rain. But that’s just the beginning.

Entwined within Hawaiian song and poetry, rain may signify joy, life, growth, greenery, the presence of gods or royalty, sexual relations, beauty or hardship.

Light rains and mist might be a sign of good fortune, and heavy rains may be indicative of grief, sorrow and tears.

In the richness of the Hawaiian language, every type of rain has it’s own name and meaning, and is often associated with particular places:

  • kili, much beloved rain
  • ko’iawe, light moving rain
  • kili hau, chilly rain
  • ua nāulu, showery rain
  • ua hō’e’ele, drenching rain
  • ua lani pili, rain downpour
  • ua ho’okina, continuous rain
  • ua hekili, rain with large drops
  • ua hikiki’i, slanting rain
  • ililani, unexpected rain
  • uakoko, rainbow-hued rain
  • kuāua hope, spring rain
  • ka ua ‘awa, bitter rain (grief)

Ua Like Nô A Like (My Heart’s Choice)

~Words & music by Alice Everett

Ua like nô a like (It is like the rain)

Me ka ua Kanilehua (That produces the lehua blossom)

Me he ala e `i mai ana (It seems to say to me)

Aia i laila ke aloha  (Love is there)