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Watch the New Zealand Parliament Break Into Song as Gay Marriage is Legalized: VIDEO


Hundreds of spectators in the gallery of New Zealand's parliament broke into a rendition of the love song “Pokarekare Ana” in the indigenous Maori language after the marriage equality bill was passed today.

Louisa Wall, the bill's lesbian sponsor, is below on the left.

This is what equality sounds like.



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  1. When the speaker called out unlock the doors, I thought they were going to break into "Let's Have a KiKi..." This was even better...

    Posted by: HirsuteHeuristics | Apr 17, 2013 10:32:43 AM

  2. Lots of Maori people there, Maori song, the Maoris rock. Instead, one might have imagined that, as natives, they would be among the most conservative of people. Who in fact was the Maori woman featured on camera? Her story?

    Posted by: UFFDA | Apr 17, 2013 10:41:57 AM

  3. AWESOME!!!

    Posted by: andrew | Apr 17, 2013 10:43:33 AM

  4. Thank you New Zealand!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    Posted by: Dearcomrade | Apr 17, 2013 10:46:27 AM

  5. I thought the same thing @Hirsute--and agree, this was even better.

    @UFFDA: The woman you see a lot of in the video is lesbian MP Louisa Wall, the bill's sponsor. Obviously a big and happy moment for her.

    Posted by: Ernie | Apr 17, 2013 10:50:30 AM

  6. The woman featured most is Louisa Wall, who submitted the equal marriage bill.

    Posted by: Mellotron | Apr 17, 2013 10:51:54 AM

  7. Must be all the pollen in the air. Tears are streaming down my face.

    Thank you, New Zealand.

    Posted by: jamal49 | Apr 17, 2013 10:59:22 AM

  8. Kia Ora and congratulations New Zealand! Considering the close and long held ties between Australia and yourselves, I only hope that your success will give our political leaders a wake up call. In the meantime that song brought tears to my eyes, and I couldn't be more happy or proud of our mates across the Tasman..

    Posted by: Michael | Apr 17, 2013 11:05:31 AM

  9. This is so beautiful and heartwarming, I'm basically bawling right now.
    I hope the whole world would experience love and empathy like that.

    Posted by: E.N. | Apr 17, 2013 11:19:58 AM

  10. very cool

    Posted by: reality | Apr 17, 2013 11:25:43 AM

  11. CONGRESS: GET A CLUE and don't be the last (western--I know some twits comment that it would probably be Saudi Arabia or other Muslim country to be last) country on the block to do us proud.

    Posted by: Steve | Apr 17, 2013 11:44:19 AM

  12. Touching.

    Posted by: David Hearne | Apr 17, 2013 12:25:51 PM

  13. Congratulations NZ!

    You have unshackled the chains of oppression from your gay brethren.

    Posted by: JONES | Apr 17, 2013 1:08:10 PM

  14. The song is apparently of WW I vintage ( See the video of the song by Haley Westerna complete with English sub-titles here:

    Posted by: Jason | Apr 17, 2013 1:37:48 PM

  15. When I was a kid, there was a version of that song that connected it with Tutanekai, who was mentioned in Te Ururoa Flavell's speech to Parliament last night.

    Tutanekai sang across the water it to his (female) lover Hinemoa, but as Dr Flavell pointed out, Tutanekai also had a male lover called Tiki, and Tiki's status as his Takatāpui is the Maori word for LGBT lovers.

    Whatever the case, Pokarekare Ana is a love song - good way to end the bill's passage through Parliament.

    Posted by: Nick Thompson | Apr 17, 2013 4:03:54 PM

  16. Well, finally, a parliament who does the right thing! Well done.. And with regard to the singing... Wonderful.. loved it. I la la'd along with it as though I know it.. I don't know the words but no matter.. I know the tune.. the words must be good.. Nice to hear it. I wish all parliaments had singing like that.

    Posted by: diane McEwen | Apr 17, 2013 4:24:42 PM

  17. Moving.

    Posted by: Francis #1 | Apr 17, 2013 6:35:39 PM

  18. NZ was also first to give women the vote.

    Posted by: mixed paint | Apr 17, 2013 10:42:05 PM

  19. I was there with my husband (we're Kiwi's but married in Canada in 2009) and this was unplanned but absolutely amazing to be standing in Parliament singing this most poignant love song that has spoken of enduring love & traditionally farewelled our troops for over 100 years.

    PS It's not unusual in Maori (New Zealand indigenous) culture to end a debate with Waiata (song) but having hundreds of supporters of LGBTI rights spontaneously sing on this occasion was unmatched joy!
    Waiata or songs and chants are an important part of Māori culture. The words and expressions preserve the wisdom and knowledge of ancestors.There are many forms of waiata used for different purposes including oriori (lullabies), waiata tangi (laments), waiata aroha (songs of love), ngeri (a type of chant), manawawera (a form of challenge) and waiata poi (poi songs). When performing a waiata, it is important to choose a song appropriate for the occasion.Waiata are often performed at the end of whaikōrero (speeches) to support what has been said. They can also be sung to remove tapu (restrictions) or to engage, entertain, calm, or comfort the listener.

    Posted by: James Barron | Apr 17, 2013 10:58:03 PM

  20. Wow..just one more reason to love the Kiwis.

    Posted by: Homer | Apr 17, 2013 11:55:11 PM

  21. Wow..just one more reason to love the Kiwis.

    Posted by: Homer | Apr 17, 2013 11:55:11 PM

  22. @Chris in Irvine
    There is a full rendition of the song, Pokarekare Ana, on Youtube, performed by Kiri Te Kanawa and a men's chorus:
    If you click on the captioning button, you can see the lyrics in Maori and English.
    The song is about a long distance or divided love, and the lyrics include the lines:
    I send you my ring / So that your people [tribe/community/family] can see / How tormented I am [by my love for you]. / Girl, come back to me. / I could die of love for you. / My love will never be dried by the sun; / It will forever be moistened by my tears.

    Just in case you didn't already find the video sufficiently moving.

    Posted by: e1ijah | Apr 18, 2013 4:27:11 AM

  23. This wasn't about NZ glbti. This was about being able to tell the world: This is right and it is time. To all my gay brothers and sisters around the world: kia te moemoea, kia whawhai tonu matou - here is the dream/hope/aspiration, never give up!

    Posted by: Nathan | Apr 18, 2013 5:56:12 AM

  24. what a wonderful moment, lovely song, cool people! Tears.

    Posted by: DannyEastVillage | Apr 18, 2013 6:24:57 AM

  25. This link gives a translation of the song;

    Posted by: Peter | Apr 18, 2013 8:16:42 AM

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