Legend of the Menehune
According to hawaiian legends, many hundreds of years ago the Menehune were a malicious group of little humans or dwarves who hid in the woods and dales of the island before the first Polynesian migrants. This menehune, which wandered through the woods at nights, should be about 60 cm high, although some are as small as 15 cm, small enough to sit in the palms of the hands.
Menehune are known for using magical darts to stab the hearts of furious men and instead arouse emotions of arousal. Kikiaola, also known as the Menehune Trench, a historical watering trench that drains waters from the Waimea River on Kauai, is said to be one such work.
Had they been found, their work would have been stopped. Menehune were told that no one would see them at work after nightfall. But then one evening the king's brothers and sisters crept up and saw the thousand of Menehune at work just to go to sleep. When the sun rose, they spotted the Menehune and turned it into two columns of stones, which can now be seen in the hills above the fish pond.
The Menehune, broken by the light, leaves two holes in the pond walls. The masonry that bridged the void was far below that of the mystic Menehune. A further descriptor handed down in traditional folk music is that of the three menehune of Ainahou.
The Ainahou is a wood on the northern side of the Halekala crater on Maui. Three menehune were named Ha'alulu, Molawa and Eleu. The other Menehune in Hawaii knew them well because they had very uncommon forces. Ha'alulu means "tremble" and it seemed as if this little man was always chilly, but his magical talent was that whenever he started to shake, he became unseen and could go anywhere without being discovered.
Molova's name means "lazy," but what most folks didn't know was that whenever he seemed to sleep or to be rotten, his magic self became unnoticeable and he went around the Isle doing good things. Although the Menehune are said to have been driven out when the first colonists arrive in Hawaii, some still believe that the Menehune roams the Isles and performs human cunning.
In fact, 65 persons were mentioned as "menehune" in a census of 1820 in Kauai. There are other mythological reports from Hawaii relating to some other types of forest: the Nawao - large and feral hunter descendants of Lua nu'u - the Mu and the Wa.