Ghosts Next Door

Ghosts Next Door
by Lopaka Kapanui

May 25, 2020

"Lawe Leka"

Our mail carrier introduced a young man to everyone on our street. He was new and was doing his best to absorb the lessons taught to him by his senior. He shadowed his mentor for half of the month before he finally became our new mailman.

May 23, 2020


It was only one time, so Sean thought. One time was all it took. Now he couldnʻt get rid of her. She appeared on the outer fringes of his social circle. Peering at him from around a corner, standing among a group of his co-workers.

May 21, 2020

Lily and Her Sisters

During the time of his boyhood, my grandfather lived on the part of 2nd avenue that is now the freeway. He said he was awoken late one night by the sound of someone crying.

May 14, 2020

Ear Notes

Dad's old man smell permeates the room whenever he is in it. I often wonder if I'm going to smell that way when I get to be his age?

May 2, 2020

Ka Lae ʻO Kaena

“Nani ka’ala hemolele i ka malie
He kuahiwi nui ia no Wai’anae
He wehe ana I ka makani kaiaulu
Mai Kuaiwa no a Poka’i e, i laila
Mai loko ‘ino ‘oe, e ka makamaka ia’u
E ‘ike mai ka pono kahea mai
‘Oe anei e...”

Apr 24, 2020


Our neighbor, Mister Hori, had only himself and his son, who he hardly seemed to communicate with except through grumbling and grunts.

Apr 21, 2020

Black Betty

Two cold hands clasped Betty around her ankles. She was in a deep enough sleep that she had an awareness of the sensation.

Apr 20, 2020

Why I Meditate

There was a time in my younger life, which I refer to as the time of 'Flux.' It was a reasonable period where work, home, and spiritual activities all fell into this harmonious oneness, for lack of a better term.

Apr 17, 2020

"Perfect Rice"

After years of experience, I've learned never to be in the kitchen when my mother was either awake or at home.

Apr 16, 2020

"Blood On The Money"

The former housekeeper from a Waikiki hotel sat alone in her bedroom, surrounded with garlic, salt, and several rosaries and crucifix.

Apr 15, 2020

"Mr. Kang"

Grant Society Case File:  #3574733

The aged koa wood table hosted an entire Korean menu from Dubu Bokum to Bul Gogi. The steam rising from the local meat jun was very inviting, as was the sumptuous aroma from the different sauces for each dish.

Apr 12, 2020


I remember how guilty I felt when I went to see the devastation at Leilani estates a couple of years ago. All the curiosity went right out of me the second I witnessed the reality of what the volcanic eruption did to the everyday life of the people who lived there.

Apr 11, 2020

From The Cradle To The Cave

Three in the morning, one of the times that I have a moment to myself. Everything is quiet except for the slight tremor of cold air that comes in off the ocean. I figured I'd walk since my house is the last one on the block before the beach park.

Apr 10, 2020

The Boyfriend Problem


My daughter Terra and her boyfriend Claude were together for a good seven years before they finally called it quits. In my opinion, that relationship went seven years overtime. It should have ended in the first month.

Apr 9, 2020

Move Me Out

I've sat through many midnights at this bus shack. I never noticed how cold this concrete slab can get during these late hours. Funny how it takes a squad of three police cars just to ask me why I'm here since the buses in my neighborhood stopped running at 10 pm?

Apr 8, 2020

Burt's Pillbox

My brother Martin was a great storyteller. I was his rapt audience of one. Well, so was Laura, his girlfriend, but I was his younger brother, so I came first.

Apr 5, 2020

The Name Of A Monster


In any new relationship, there's a lot of passion and long talks regarding wistful hopes and dreams for the future. Truth be told, this wasn't my first rodeo. My previous relationships were unsuccessful, to say the least, but Kona assured me that her love was enough for both of us, and I needn't worry.

Mar 9, 2020

ROCK ON! - What NOT to Do in Hawaii

Rock stacking. In many places, even here in Hawaii, this can be such a negative issue that some go so far as to call it “graffiti.”

For many people, nature and the practice of hiking, exploring, and escaping from the din of the city has come to include the obsession with finding and posting the “perfect shot” for social media. Sadly, this often includes making adjustments to the natural landscape in order to compose said “perfect shot.” This brings us to one of the most obvious and, some would argue, wildly out of hand practice of rock stacking.

Jan 18, 2020

ASHES TO ASHES - What not to do in Hawaii

Once in a while, you will see a pile of ashes at a heiau, along a hiking trail and at other sacred and perhaps not so sacred sites throughout Hawaii.