NIU Series

‘Kopu, the lone star of dawn. Here she shines in all her glory, solitary, still and silent’

I am Kopu, known as ‘tohua ata’ (the sign of dawn) or the ’dawn star’. Seen on the horizon, in eastern skies, just before sunrise, my great beauty was much admired and acknowledged, hence the well-known whakatauki (proverb) - ‘Me te mea ko Kopu, a rere i te pae ... like Venus (a beautiful woman), as she appears above the horizon’. Many poetic lament or waiata (song) were composed and dedicated to my presence which generally expressed an awe of my solitary bearing, but quite often in reference to the love of a beautiful woman, or a love lost.

I am also known as the companion of Tama-nui-te-ra (the Sun) because I help give warmth to the coming of dawn. I am the Kaitiaki (guardian) who watchers over the skies and all of mankind.
(Excerpt from NIU - He Tangata Matauhi, Voices of our Ancestors)