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!!!FR33D0M 0FF SP33CH!!!

My title is “FR33D0M 0FF SP33CH”, a play on the saying “freedom of speech”. I write with the intent of voicing tough subjects that others haven’t or don’t, and often exposing things that I wouldn’t tell or share personally. “FR33D0M 0FF SP33CH” consists of 37 poems, 2 hooks and a chorus in this complete album. My earliest piece can date back to 2020 with the latest pieces being written in 2021. They express different visions of day-to-day life through points of view and alternating voices and perspectives. The topics range from anything like seeing a face in the smudge on a wall, to things like love, street styles and why I can’t sleep at night. They are to be read left to right, top to bottom -- but feel free to read them as you see fit, because it’s art after all and what you see is what you see. Those labelled “Mirrored” have been turned upside down to allow reading from either end and show the extent of form and variety my pieces can take. Some things may be explicit or hard to read, but I assure you that they are just certain views from different angles that I believe need to be shared. There is a strong political/cultural component to my mahi, a tough vocal attack on elements of society I believe are flawed and unjust, and an exposure of the addictions and abuses that colonial history and racial inequality lead to – but there’s also an intense celebration of the power of the Māori voice that remains, its beat and pride and resilience and ancestry, joined by a rich musical joy in the songs of the street I grew up in, their rhythms and rap, energy and power. It has taken me a long time to reach this level of writing in terms of technique, rhythm and content. I want the reader to see things through my shades and feel what it feels like to be me with an understanding of why I am and where I come from. To understand that, No, I don’t know everything, and I don’t expect anyone else to. But, Yes, this is what I saw, felt and how I interpreted it. So there it is and this is me, the bro Hugh. A lit ūrikā descendant of Ngāti Kuri, Ngāti Rēhia, Te Rārawa, Te Aupōuri and Ngāpuhi. Bred in the streets I-roam and made home. A dreamer of the future. Last but not least, your son, your brother, your bro and he who wrote the killer book that you are about to read. Churrr!!!
Type of thesis
The University of Waikato
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