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My father from Yarunkanyi

by Jamanawita Betty Nungarrayi, Lajamanu, 1984

 

translated from Warlpiri with Barbara Gibson Nakamarra (1984, 1995) and edited for the CD-ROM Dream trackers (UNESCO, 2000) by Barbara Glowczewski

Jukurrpa took ngarlajiyi from Yarduralinyi. He took the name of my father. My father's spirit went with the Dreaming to Yamakangu. The yam flower talked to the Yam Dreaming. She said 'Ngarlajiyi' and the yam grew, the spirit of my father. 

 

Jukurrpa went. He went to a kumanjayi place. The leaves grew. A new yam was born. The roots spread very far. They took the Dreaming to Ngarrnka. They went in parallel lines. The yam flower talked.

 

In Yalingparunyu a new yam was born. The Dreaming made a yam in the wet ground. The leaves lay down. They were shining bright green, fed by the water of the ground. My father's Dreaming took his name. Yam spread his roots. New roots, long, very long, travelled to Yinikimpi. All along they gave tubers which shoot to the top or the bottom.

 

My father felt the ground, he hit it. The land was hard where the tubers had grown. The roots spread to Lapurrkurra. Tubers were born. My father dug the ground. He found many of them. He dug and dug and followed the roots to Ngarranji. The Dreaming made the roots fall very close, in Yarunkanyi, the place of Napaljarri, Nungarrayi, Japaljarri and Jungarryi skins. This is where my father's name was left. He left him with other kurruwalpa spirit-children. My father's name fell in the Pankulmanu waterhole. My father's conception Dreaming continued to Waputarli, but there the story does not belong to me.

 

 

STORY

2. My father found my spirit 

 

I am from Yarunkanyi. This is where I was conceived. My parents were collecting seeds they made into a damper and they ate. This is how my mother caught me inside her. My father found my spirit-child in the seeds of his country. This spirit was coming from the Ngarrka Dreaming who lies there. My father and his brother were the custodians of this Dreaming. He organised the dances and the Law ceremonies for this land. I was born and learnt how to dance, sing and paint my Dreaming.

 

When my mother died, I followed my father and went to work in a cattle station. Feeling he was going to die, my father wanted to go back to his country. But he died halfway, in Patilirri, a place of the Ngatijirri Budgerigar Dreaming. I stayed working with my relatives in the station where I was married to my promised husband.

 

 

3. I swallowed my children's spirit

 

One day, I was walking near Pikilyi, a place of the Kana stick Dreaming. A Water Dreaming also came through with a spirit-child, Pirlipanta. He left the name in the Pikilyi spring. I drank that water. Then seeing the rain come, I hid in a cave. There I saw something moving,

'What is it?' I asked myself.

 

I took a stone and hit, it was a perentie lizard sent by the spirit-child of the spring, but I did not know. Poor fellow, I hit him! Then I grilled (him) on the fire and ate him. Thus I swallowed that spirit-child! I felt sick and fell asleep. The child was growing in my belly, my first son called by his spirit name, Pirlipanta.

 

When he started to walk I went to Jutarrang where the Wallaby people made the Jardiwanpa fire ceremony and left lots of spirit-children of the Wampana Wallaby Dreaming . That's how I was 'caught' by my second son.

 

Later on, I had a daughter. I was collecting bush raisins in Yarunkanyi, my spirit's and my father's place. The spirit of my daughter was in the raisins, but I did not know. I ate them and vomited, then fell asleep. 

'Mummy, I came inside you!' said the spirit in my dream.

'Who called me "mummy"?' I asked myself when I woke up.

 

I went back to the station, and the spirit followed me hidden in my stomach! I had swallowed it with the raisins, but it was really coming from my father's Ngarrka Dreaming. My daughter was born in the Yuendumu reserve were I was shifted to. The missionaries gave me baby food and clothes.

 

 

4. My son's spirit made people fight!

 

My last child showed himself by lighting a fire. His spirit lit a tent. People saw a little karnari lizard, but it was a man, my son. He provoked a terrible conflict between the people in the camp. It is often like that with spirit-children, they make people argue. Everybody joined the fight.

'Fight, all of you!' My son's spirit was shouting.

 

Spears were flying and some people got wounded! After the fight, I fell asleep under a plum tree. The spirit-child came close and whispered,

'Hey, Mummy, I here am!'

'Where is the one that talked to me?' I asked myself when I woke up. 'It must be a child, a spirit that talked to me. Of course, this is why I can't see him!'

 

It was true, he was in my belly! So him too, like my other children, was not conceived on the land of his father. His conception Dreaming is Yunkuranyi Honey Ant that crosses the Yuendumu reserve. But from his father he inherited the custody of the Rain Dreaming.

 

A Jungarrayi stolen by a Nangala

by Betty Nungarrayi, Lajamanu, 1984

 

translated from Warlpiri with Barbara Gibson Nakamarra (1984, 1995) and edited for the CD-ROM Dream trackers (UNESCO, 2000) by Barbara Glowczewski

 

STORY 1

Night after night, men and women sang and danced to make the young Jungarrayi into a man. He was still in seclusion for the kurdiji ceremony. No women were allowed to come close. But a Nangala fell in love with him. She took him on her shoulders and flew away back to her country.

 

STORY 2

Warakalukalu kurra wantimirra yarnunjuku karnalu nyina!

'I am hungry,' said Jungarrayi, who was not allowed to eat meat because his initiation was not finished. 

'That's my law — my country — good country Yarunkanyi.'

 

SONG

'Yampiya, leave me alone, I am too young,' Jungarrayi was saying to the Nangala who was bringing him food. 

He refused to eat for a long time until one day he accepted and married her.

 

 

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Archives de chercheurs: Barbara Glowczewski [Collection(s) 28]
Audio of stories and songs, Lajamanu, Central Australia, 1984 [Set(s) 709]
Meta data
Object(s) ID 70090
Permanent URI https://www.odsas.net/object/70090
Title/DescriptionJukurrpa; Yawulyu: Betty Nungarrayi recounts Dreaming story of NGARRKA (initiated man) at Yarungkanyi; Songs sung by Betty Nungarrayi and Pampirriya Nungarrayi (recorded 19 June 1984)
Author(s)Betty Nungarrayi, Pampirriya (Margaret) Nungarrayi
Year/Period1984
LocationLajamanu, Tanami Desert, Central Australia
Coordinateslat -35.27 / long 149.08

Language(s)Warlpiri
Copyright Barbara Glowczewski
Rank 16 / 83
Filesize 33232 Kb
Transcription[ See/hide ]
Tape6 side 2
Quote this document Glowczewski, Barbara 1984 [accessed: 2020/12/2]. "Jukurrpa; Yawulyu: Betty Nungarrayi recounts Dreaming story of NGARRKA (initiated man) at Yarungkanyi; Songs sung by Betty Nungarrayi and Pampirriya Nungarrayi (recorded 19 June 1984)" (Object Id: 70090). In Audio of stories and songs, Lajamanu, Central Australia, 1984 . Tape: 6 side 2. ODSAS: https://www.odsas.net/object/70090.
Annotations
Annotation layer(s)Jikili Rose Napaljarri   (laughren: transcription)
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