Tnorala Dreaming

Tnorala Dreaming
In the time of world-dawn
When the ancestors dreamed
The world into being, raised
colour from the grey, formed
being from nullity
The women danced as stars
In the heavens

Dancing, Dancing
Stars in the heavens
A pinwheel dance
Round the Southern sky

She dances with child
On her hip, twirling round
Laughter and giggles
Sweet baby smiles
But tiring, tiring
She withdraws for a while

Come on sister!
Keep on! Dance with us!

I can’t, I must stop
The child’s weight, just too much!

Put the child down!
They say
Come dance with us!

And so she does
Puts the child
In the coolamon
All tucked away

Dancing, Dancing
Stars in the heavens
A pinwheel dance
Round the southern sky

But the coolamon tips
The child falls away
Falls from the coolamon
Falls from the sky

The child crashes
Down to the Earth
Throws dirt to the sky
Then lost forever
None understand why

Still, every day
The first star in evening
Looks for her child
Lost from the heavens

The father still seeking
Come every morning
The last star you’ll see
The last at sun’s rising

Don’t look to the heavens
Don’t look to the sky
At morning or evening
When lone stars
Are listening
For their lost child’s cry

Perhaps they will see you
And think you’re their babe
Perhaps they will take you
Far, far away

(Gosse Bluff)
Northern Territory, Australia

Taken during travels, 1994

Gosse Bluff is a crater created with the force of one thousand Hiroshimas some 140 million years ago.

That’s one story.

Another story, as told by Australian Aboriginal Dreamtime legend, goes more like the story above. Here’s where you can read more about the Tnorala Dreaming.