Yäkuny ŋarra dhuwala Doris Yethun Burarrwaŋa
This is the story of my struggle to teach children why it’s important they know their country.
Dhuwanydja dhäwu ŋarrakuŋu nhäwiku marŋgithinyaraw djamarrkuḻiw, dhiyak djäkaw limurrukalaŋaw wäŋaw
When I was a little girl I heard the story of where I was born from my Father
Ŋunhi ŋarra yothu yan ŋarra ŋäkul dhäwu ŋayi gan bapamirriŋuy lakaraŋal ŋarrakal. Gaṯirri Burrawaŋa ga ŋäṉḏimirriŋur Wapulkuma Gurrwiwi.
He told me I was born 20.10.1958 in the mangrove near Doltji at a place called Larthaŋaŋur near to where the big pearling farm on Cape Wilberforce is now situated. When I was born I was wrapped in paperbark to keep warm.
Ŋayi lakaram ŋarrakal ŋunhi ŋarra dhawal-guyaŋirr 20.10.58 gathulŋur galki Doltji wäŋaŋur yäkuyŋur Lathaŋaŋur ŋunhi dharrwa mala ga ŋorra Gulawu Cape Wilburforce-ŋur. Ŋunhi ŋarra dhawal-guyaŋinany dhurrthurryurra ŋarrany raŋandhun gurrmurkuŋala. Ŋarraku gurruṯumirr mala gan nhinan Lathaŋaŋur ga ŋunhal Beyalŋaŋur.
My mother and father and family stayed at Larthaŋaŋur yurr räŋiŋur munatha wiyin’ŋur on the long beach called walit. It was there that my father gave me the names Lathaŋa and Beyalŋa. My family put me into the canoe my father had made and paddled back down the peninsular to the homelands at Maṯamaṯa. We had two canoes, one called Djulpan and the other called Bamaṯuka. We travelled altogether. Here is a picture of us at Maṯamaṯa when I was a girl.
Ŋarraku gurruṯumirr rulaŋthurr ṉakulil ŋarrakal bapamirriŋuy djäma marrwala bala yarrupthurra Peninsular-kurra balan roŋiyirra balan Maṯamaṯalil napurr ga ŋayatham märrma’ ṉaku yäku djulpan ga wiripuny yäku Bamaṯuku bukmak napurr ga rrambaŋi marrtji, dhuwal mayali’ wuŋili napurr ŋunhal Maṯamaṯaŋur dhuwal napurr mali’ ŋunhi ŋarra yothu.
Me and my dad and family at Maṯmaṯa 1959
When I was a young girl of and up until the age of 7, I would travel around with my parents to different places in the country. I would help my father make fire and do things. I really like stories. I would sit on my father’s knee and he would tell me stories about his life, our family and the country. At different times of the year we would travel to different places and there we would learn the names of the country and the stories of the places.
Ga yan bili ŋunhi ŋarra marrtjin ŋuthar ga goŋ-märrma’ (7 years old) ŋarrany gan malthurra Yan ŋarrakalaŋaw ŋäṉḏimirriŋuw ga bapamirriŋuw ga marrtjinay napurr gan ḻiw’maraŋal wiripuŋuli ga wiripuŋulil wäŋalil ga ŋarra ŋuli guŋgayun ŋarraku bapamirriŋuny, yurr gurtha djäma ga wiripu mala ŋarra ŋuli ga guŋgayun, yurr mirithirrnydja ŋarra ŋuli gan djälthin dhäwuw ŋänharaw. Ŋarra ŋuli mulkurr ŋalyun moriwal bala ŋayi ŋuli dhäwun lakaram ŋarraku ŋunhi nhältjarr ŋayi gan marrathin, ga gurruḏu mala ŋarraku ga wäŋa mala ga nhä ŋayi ŋarraku yuwalk ŋunhi wäŋa, ga bitjarri bili yan marrtjin wiripuŋulil ga marŋgithin yan marrtjin.
Me and miss Western, a little girl I cant remember now, and Ruth Mula at Sheperdson College.
When I was eight years old I moved to Galiwin’ku. At Galiwin’ku I went to school. At school I made lots of friends. This was the time of Papa Sheppi (Rev. Harold Shepherdson). My girlfriends and I would leave school and go for walks after school. Together we learnt about friendship and each other’s country and each other’s lives. We would learn about this place Galiwin’ku and the flowers and the plants and the seasons and the animals and the fish and the shellfish. Later when I was a little older Ian Morris would take us out to learn about the animals of this Place. It was here at Galiwin’ku that we first came into contact with Balanda and here we learnt about Balanda law.
Ga ŋunhi ŋarra wirrkuḻyinan bala ŋarra marrtjinan Galiwin’kulila ga dhiyala ŋarra marrtjinan wukirrilila, bala ŋarra ḻundumirriyirra balanyamirriy Shepherdson gan nhinanan dhiyal ŋarraku ḻunḏumirriŋu mala napurr ŋuli marrtji dhawar’yunaŋur wukirriŋur, ga marŋgithin napurr gan marr-ŋamathinyamirriw romgu ga wäŋaw napurruŋgalŋaw wäŋaw ga romku bala räliyunmirr napurruŋgalaŋaw romgu mala ga margithirra ga balanda romgu.
What is most important are the stories of the country. All of the different countries have stories and languages and colours and dances and ceremonies. These dances and ceremonies and colours are the linkages that tie all the people of this place together, and to the land. It is a network of links to our ancestors and their stories and their creations that make us all one people. It is these understandings about the importance of our myths, about our languages, that are so critical at this time when the Balanda are taking over our country. This is the work that I do, that I love, because I understand how important it is to be related to country, and to know the stories and language of my country.
Nhä dhuwal mirithirrnydja manymak limurr dhu ga marŋgikum ga dhäwu märram’ dhiyak wäŋaw, bukmak dhuwal mala dhäruk, minytji’, buŋgul ga ŋula-nha mala ga ŋayadham. Ga dhiyaŋ mala buŋgulyu ga manikayu ga dhäruk dhu ga wäŋay ga waŋgany manapan yolŋuny malany. Dhuwandja nhäkun balanya rulwaŋdhunawaynha walalaŋguŋ ŋaḻapalmirriwuŋ ŋäthilyunawuy bitjarr walal gan wäŋan ga dhiŋgaŋal walal. Dhuwandja nhäkun dharaŋanaraw nha yuwalk, dhiyak napurruŋ yolŋuw mala dharaŋanharaw bäpurruw malaŋuw bala ga balandany buna bala ga gulmaraman ga yakayuna dhiyak malaw bala ga Djawyuna ga djäma mala ga gurrupan ga wiripun djäma mala Balanya mala ŋarra ŋuli ga djäma dhiyal wukirriŋur dharaŋan ga manapan balayi wäŋalil.
I designed the badge for the learning on country program at Galiwin’ku.
The learning on country project is a way for me to teach children about their relationships to country to the sea to the freshwater country to the bush. I can talk to them about their relationships to the animal, plants, birds and fish of the country that they live in. I can tell them about the seasonal availability of bush resources and the return of certain kinds of animals in the seasonal round. I talk to children about when to light fires, and in what kind of country to light fire, and whose country that is, and most importantly, I teach the children about their relationship to each other and the country that they live on.
Dhuwal marŋgikunharaw wäŋaw djäma ŋarra djäl dhiyak, märr ŋarra dhu ga marŋgikum walalany Gurruṯu ga wäŋa mala warrkan, dharpa ga mulmu mala, ŋarirri’, borum, maypal ga Gurruwilyun (Seasons) ga dharaŋan mala retjaŋur, ga ruŋanmaram ŋunhi ga girri’ mala ga bäki ŋunha bili yan nhä ga ŋorra ŋunhiliyi wäŋaŋur. Waŋa djamarrkuḻiwal’ dhiyakuwuy nhältjan ga nhätha dhu gurtha djuŋguryun waluy, ga yolku wäŋa ga waṯaŋu ga nhätha dhu dhuŋguryun bili dhuwal wäŋany ŋurruŋu. Limurruŋgal limurr dhu marŋgikum djamarrkuḻin’y limurruŋgalaŋaw wäŋaw mala nhinanharaw.
I am helping to teach children why it’s important they know about the fish traps on their country. This is a story about teaching children to see what is there, and about learning to see what cannot be seen.
Dhiyaŋu bala dhuwandja dhäwu ŋarrakuŋu nhäwiku guŋgyun marŋgithinyaraw djamarrkuḻiw’ gaṉḏamu ga ganybu mala ga dharra dhiyak djäkaw limurrukalaŋaw wäŋaw. Dhuwandja dhäwu ŋunhi nhä ga ŋorra marŋgithirr ŋunhi nhe dhu waŋa ŋäma ga nhäma ga nhina.
- SPIRITS OF PLACE
This is a story about what is there and what cannot be seen. This is a story about teaching people to see what is there, about learning to see what cannot be seen with the eyes. This is a story about a place named Ŋayawili, Ŋayawili was named by the ancestors who made this place. Ŋayawili is the place of the fish trap.
Dhuwandja dhäwu ŋunhi nhä ga ŋorra ŋunha bala. Wiripuny nhä ga ŋorra, ŋunhi nhe ga bäyŋun nhäman. Nhe dhu marŋgithirr ŋunhi nhe dhu waŋa ŋäma ga nhäma ga nhina. Dhuwal dhäwu yan marŋgikunharaw yolŋu-yulŋuny, nhä ga ŋorra ŋunhiliyi. Dhuwandja dhu ga marŋgikum nhänharaw, ŋunhi bäyŋun nhe ga nhäma nhokal melyu. Dhuwandja dhäwu yan Gaṉḏamuny ga Ganybuwuy. Ga yäkuny dhuwal wäŋany Ŋayawili. Ŋayawili yäku nherrpar ŋaḻapaḻmirriy ŋunhi walal gan nhinan dhiyal wäŋa. Ga Ŋayawili dhuwal wäŋa yäku, ga Ganybu ga Gaṉḏamu ga ŋorra djämapuy walalaŋguŋ. Ŋunha bamanbuy.
- THE OLD PEOPLE (ŊAḺAPAḺMIRR)
When you sit down and listen to the country it will talk to you. Here in the country you can hear the stories of those who have been here before. If you listen to the wind and the words of the songs you will learn to hear the voices of the ancestors.
Ŋunhi nhe dhu nhina ga ŋäma, wäŋany ŋayi dhu ga waŋa nhokal. Ŋunhi nhe dhu nhina ga dhäkay ŋama’ nheny dhu dharaŋana bala nhe dhu maŋgithirra bulun. Dhiyal wäŋaŋur nhe dhu dhäwu ŋäma ŋunhi walal nhenan gan ŋathil baman’. Ga dhuwal wäŋay ga ŋayatham birrimbirryun walalaŋgal ŋunhi walal gan nhinan ŋäthil dhiyal ga yurr nha limurr. Ŋunhi nhe dhu ŋäma watany ga yäku mala, ŋunha manikayŋur ŋäma ga gapu rirrakay, bala nhe dhu marŋgithirra marrtji rirraykaywun ŋaḻapaḻmirriwnha ŋayi dhu ga waŋan nhokal. Ŋunhiyiny ŋaḻapaḻmirr mala ŋurukiyiw ganybuw ga wäŋaw dhuwal Ŋayawiliŋur.
- LAW OF THE FISH TRAPS
Those who have gone before laid down the law of the fish traps say that you must not pass water near the fish traps. You must not light a fire and you must not shout out or whistle near the fish traps because the ancestors will not give you any fish.
Ŋunhiwurr mala bäyŋun barrkun ŋorran ga nherrpanawuynha walalaŋguŋ ŋunha ganybu. Ga romdja ga waŋa bitjan, yaka waryurr gaki Ganybuŋur, ga Gaṉḏamuŋur. Wiripuny ga rom ŋorra, yaka gurtha dhuŋguryurr, wiripuny, yaka gurtha galkikurr gäŋu. Ga wiripuny walalaŋ ŋaḻapaḻmirriw rom ga waŋa, yaka yätjurr ga yaka wir’yurr galki Gaṉḏamu ga Ganybuŋur. Walal dhu bäyŋun gurrupan ŋarirriny’.
- SETTING OF AMENITIES
The ḏilkurruwurru (forerunners) always situated fish traps near fresh water and closed tropical forest with useful timber and fruit trees. At places where the rocks are situated in an easy position for moving and where there are lots of maypal too.
Ga ganybuy ŋunha Ŋayawili ga dharra ŋunhi walal, ḻiya ḻapmaram märr limurr dhu marrtji marŋgikum ŋunhi walal gan nhinan, märr ŋali dhu marŋgi gurrupan yuṯany djamarrkuḻiny’.Dhuwal Ganybuw napurr ga marŋgikum yuṯany djamarrkuḻin’y napurr dhu marrtji ḻuku ŋupan bala walalany, nhaltjarr walal gan ŋaḻapaḻmirr mala marrtjin.
- INTERGENERATIONAL TRANSMISSION
The fish traps of Ŋayawili are a place where we pass on the knowledge of those who have been before to a younger generation to walk in the footsteps of the ancestors. At the fish traps we are showing the young people how to see things that cannot easily be seen with the eyes.
Ga dhuwal ganybu napurr ga milkum ga maŋgikum djamarrkuḻi’wal nhänharaw dhiyak, yurr bäyŋun nhe ga nhämany nhä ga ŋunhi ŋorra ŋunhiyi, balany mala yan ḻurrkun nha ŋunhi nhe ga marŋgithirra walalaŋgala. Ŋunhiwurr mala yan ŋunhi walal ŋäkul ga nhäŋal walalaŋkuŋ ŋunhi walal bäyŋun bilin räkunynha mala.
- THE RICH LANGUAGE OF PLACE
We are sharing the language of caring for kin and country, the words of cultural, linguistic and biological diversity. This is the language necessary to follow in the footsteps of the ancestors and care for each other and our country.
Dhuwandja ŋunhi marŋgikunharaw dhiyak guyaw ganybuw dhuwal Ŋayawiliŋur dhuwandja dhukarr marŋgikunharaw nhaltjan limurr dhu marŋgikum limurruŋ djamarrkuḻiny’ walal dhu nhäma nhä ga ŋorra ŋunhi nhe ga bäyŋu nhäma nhokal mel-yu ga ŋäma dhiyaŋ dhukarryu nhe marrtji dhu ŋuthanmaram nhuŋuwuy walŋa ga dhiyak wäŋaw nhinanharaw ga djämaw. Dhuwandja ŋunhi dhukarrnydja nhe dhu ŋuthanmaramany dhuwandja maŋgikuharaw dhiyak wäŋaw ŋunhi walal gurrupar limurruŋgal. Dhuwandja ŋunhi dhukarrnydja limurr dhu nhina ŋunhiliyi mägayaŋur dhiyal wäŋaŋur ŋunhi walal gurrupar limurruŋgal ŋaḻapaḻmirriy mala, dhiyak wäŋaw djäkaw limurruŋgalaŋaw.
- A PLACE TO LIVE
This is the knowledge of the fish traps of Ŋayawili, this is the way that we teach our children to see what is there, and importantly to understand what you cannot see with your eyes. This is the way we make a place for our kin to live in harmony with the environment our ancestors made for us.
Dhuwandja ŋunhi marŋgikunharaw dhiyak guyaw ganybuw dhuwal Ŋayawiliŋur dhuwandja dhukarr maŋjgikunharaw nhaltjan limurr dhu marŋgikum limurruŋ djamarrkuḻin’y walal dhu nhäma nhä ga ŋorra ŋunhi nhe ga bäyŋu nhäma nhokal mel-yu ga ŋäma dhiyaŋ dhukarryu nhe marrtji dhu ŋuthanmaram nhuŋuwuy walŋa ga dhiyak wäŋaw nhinanharaw ga djämaw. Dhuwandja ŋunhi dhukarrnydja nhe dhu ŋuthanmaramany dhuwandja maŋgikuharaw dhiyak wäŋaw ŋunhi walal gurrupar limurruŋgal. Dhuwanadja ŋunhi dhukarrnydja limurr dhu nhina ŋunhiliyi mägayaŋur dhiyal wäŋaŋur ŋunhi walal gurrupar limurruŋgal ŋaḻapalmirriy mala, dhiyak wäŋaw djäkaw limurruŋgalaŋaw.
David Hancock https://www.davidhancockphoto.com.au/
Therese Ritchie http://thereseritchie.com/art.com/home.html
Angie Gray https://angiefrejagray.wixsite.com/mysite