When Hine-Nui-Te-Po was a young lady, before the darkness of her tale, there was the ‘flashing dawn’ and so here I show her youthful and holding the power of dawn’s amber hue in her hand.
However, she is still surrounded by hints of what she will become. The flowers above are morning glory and saffron . Saffron is referred to by Virgil in the Aeneid. Aurora being the Roman Goddess of dawn.
Aurora now had left her saffron bed,
And beams of early light the heav’ns o’erspread,
When, from a tow’r, the queen, with wakeful eyes,
Saw day point upward from the rosy skies.
The flower below the word Dawn however is the ‘Queen of the Night’ flower.
The night sky below hints at the journey she will take and words at the very bottom of the painting…
Te -Po-Tahuri-Mai-Ki-Taiao The Night of turning towards the revealed world, One of the 12 stages of ‘Te Po’ within Maori Mythology.