New Zealand's new Poet Laureate wants to encourage more Pacific writers to find their own unique voice through poetry.
Dr Selina Tusitala Marsh, of Samoan, Tuvaluan, Scottish and French descent, takes up the two year national award that recognises outstanding contributions to poetry.
Dr Marsh's poetry has featured in dozens of books and publications.
Last year she performed one of her poems for Queen Elizabeth II.
She accepted the Laureate award on National Poetry Day at the launch of her latest book, titled Tightrope.
"Keep writing, believe in yourself - that unique thing that you have inside, let it shine.
"And like very early on, someone had said to me that 'oh you shouldn't rhyme in your poetry because it wasn't very sophisticated' and then I thought actually I don't want to be sophisticated, I want to be communicated.
"I want to be able to connect and touch people and if rhythm and rhyme is the way to do that, then I'm gonna do that."
Dr Selina Marsh also paid tribute to family including her late mother, who came to New Zealand from Samoa not speaking a word of English in her acceptance speech.
She takes up the prestigious award after renowned poet, CK Stead.
New Zealand Poet Laureate Award acceptance speech was a poem by Dr Selina Tusitala Marsh
I accept this award on behalf of the ten-year-old
at St Joseph's in Otahuhu
who found a word to rhyme with monocle
I accept this award on behalf
of Writers In Schools
whose powers are bionicle
I accept this award on behalf of Pasifika peoples
whose brown faces
aspire to higher places
I accept this award on behalf of women
whose hypothetical babies are born
while running political races
I accept this award on behalf of working class
who press against
windows of privilege
I accept this award on behalf of tangata whenua
-- without land,
you know it takes a village
I accept this award on behalf of those
for whom poetry induces vomit
I will woo you with haiku, spoken word, slam, rhyming couplet and sonnet
I accept this award on behalf of mum
who spoke no English
when she came from Samoa
I accept as her daughter
the award of New Zealand Poet Laureate
quite poetic - don't you think Aotearoa?