This is a poem I wrote when I was researching in the archives in Darwin after fieldwork.
The archives (and the impossibly resourceful archivists) were just amazing. It was a strange and almost melancholy experience. Like a ethnographic bower-bird I collected stories and photos of and about the history of my adoptive kin (from the perspective of the local Methodist Missionaries and then local Government reps). I was able to hold in my hand, for example, documents from the 1950s, about particular kin o’mine hand-written by particular local missionaries at the time. T’was kind of uncanny in many ways.
I will translate this when I have time.
‘Today the clouds are like mountains
The wet season rises
to the west yurru
I see it beηuru
Bala mulkurr ηarra roηi-yirri
bala ηunhabala nhina ηilimurru yukurra
galkun yukurra galkun