Today is Australia Day. It is a national holiday, and as you read this I hope that I am still asleep in bed. It is a day for family and bar-b-cues (no, not shrimp, we call them prawns) and be grateful to having the luck to be living in this wonderful country.
Aren’t they lovely words? All Aboriginal words that have been used to name towns in the state of New South Wales.
The name Tumbarumba may be derived from Wiradjuri dhamba dhamba, meaning “very soft” or alternatively from the Aboriginal words for “hollow sounding ground”, “thunder”, “sound” or “place of big trees”.
Wagga means crows, so Wagga Wagga is thought to mean ‘the place of many crows’ .
These names are examples of reduplication, a common theme in Australian toponymy, especially in names derived from Indigenous Australian languages such as Wiradjuri. Reduplication is often used as an intensifier such as “Wagga Wagga” many crows and “Tilba Tilba” many waters.
An evacuation order has been issued by the State Emergency Services for people in the flood affected areas of Gumly Gumly, East Wagga Wagga and Surrounding Areas.
Prayers and thoughts with them.
My Country by Dorothea Mackellar (1885 – 1968)
The love of field and coppice,
Of green and shaded lanes.
Of ordered woods and gardens
Is running in your veins,
Strong love of grey-blue distance
Brown streams and soft dim skies
I know but cannot share it,
My love is otherwise.
I love a sunburnt country,
A land of sweeping plains,
Of ragged mountain ranges,
Of droughts and flooding rains.
I love her far horizons,
I love her jewel-sea,
Her beauty and her terror -
The wide brown land for me!
A stark white ring-barked forest
All tragic to the moon,
The sapphire-misted mountains,
The hot gold hush of noon.
Green tangle of the brushes,
Where lithe lianas coil,
And orchids deck the tree-tops
And ferns the warm dark soil.
Core of my heart, my country!
Her pitiless blue sky,
When sick at heart, around us,
We see the cattle die-
But then the grey clouds gather,
And we can bless again
The drumming of an army,
The steady, soaking rain.
Core of my heart, my country!
Land of the Rainbow Gold,
For flood and fire and famine,
She pays us back threefold-
Over the thirsty paddocks,
Watch, after many days,
The filmy veil of greenness
That thickens as we gaze.
An opal-hearted country,
A wilful, lavish land-
All you who have not loved her,
You will not understand-
Though earth holds many splendours,
Wherever I may die,
I know to what brown country
My homing thoughts will fly.
A journey into the world of Aboriginal art.
FROM THE PUBLISHERS OF THE BESTSELLER FIRST AUSTRALIANS COMES the lavishly illustrated ART+SOUL, the companion book to the prime-time ABC TV series by the same name.
art+soul is inspired by the flourishing of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander art in Australia over the past thirty years, captivating viewers around the world with astonishingly powerful artworks.
Hetti Perkins, the distinguished Aboriginal art curator, travels to the startlingly beautiful landscapes of remote Arnhem Land, saltwater country and the desert heartlands of Central Australia, sharing with us the rare privilege of being welcomed into the homes and homelands of many senior artists.
This lavishly illustrated book captures the remarkable energy and diversity of Aboriginal art, from the Papunya Tula Artists, the renowned art movement that had its humble beginnings in the early 1970s, to Rover Thomas and his heirs’ phenomenal achievements in the East Kimberley. It features the work of contemporary artists Destiny Deacon, Brenda L Croft and Michael Riley, and that of the celebrated Emily Kam Ngwarray, whose paintings revolutionised Australian art.
art+soul tells their stories-heartfelt, intimate and political.
The book includes more than 150 artworks, and photographs by Warwick Thornton, director of the accompanying television series and the award-winning film Samson and Delilah.
This is not a sponsored ad – I just want the world to be aware that Aboriginal art is alive and well in Australia!