‘And how did the rulers make that light appear? Every year it came to the temple for seven hundred years. What if it was cloudy, like it is today?’Read More
My Aboriginal grandfather didn’t want to be buried in a graveyard with a headstone after he died. “Put me up in a tree,” he said, “Like the old people did.”
“They put dead bodies up in a tree?” I was incredulous.
There are those who use the old names in the pursuit of a misguided principle — that English speakers have a right to hegemony, to be the unquestioned namers of everything on the Australian islands.Read More
As I sat one day on the tall hill of sand and sea grass, I realised that the hill was mostly made of shells. Not just any shells, but large shells of tasty shellfish: oysters, cockles, limpets, pipis and periwinkles. All of them good to eat. Six thousand years of shells.Read More
As an alienated adolescent (who would rather do anything but look after – or even look at – sick people and their problems), I stared into the waves at the beach a lot. I knew there was something there for me, if I just kept looking.Read More
For local Aboriginal people, the Anangu, a person’s spirit can be disconnected from the body, causing sickness. You can even see the healer — the ngangkari — looking for a person’s spirit, finding it under a bush and restoring it to the sick person.Read More
Next time an Australian with fair skin reveals their Aboriginality, whether by their clothes or jewelry, their tattoos or their story, let your heart swell with gratitude that the web of Aboriginal cultures continues to be woven.Read More