I pay my respects to all Aboriginal Peoples - past, present and future and all Peoples who support and promote a continuity of Aboriginal culture as connectedness...
Together we are intergenerational species, spirit and environments.
I am a descendant of budbury and his daughter mandagerry as a maternal line. We are
balanyini (men and women) living as waterholes (re-named "Belgenny Ponds" surrounding Camden NSW).
I was born on gadigal ngurra (Country-Camperdown Hospital) so I acknowledge this blessing as well as my childhood homes as gweagal-bronti and bondi, woronora fresh water (Engadine), Georges River, and narrabin (Narrabeen) salt water. I also acknowledge deep connections as tulon where our family had a hut on the river (near Hill End NSW) For this we pay our respects to Wiradjuri Peoples and I also pay respects to Bundjulung Peoples where I have raised my daughter.
My daughter and I also acknowledge her fathers peoples as Larakia (Darwin NT), and our ancestry as the Walsh clan of Killkenny Mountain, in Ireland, and our connection to na daang (known as Nellie of Mulgoa) as budbury's life partner.
As custodians of, murura bala-nyini, baduli, kibuwali marrangbadu durrubbin, meaning more than one path of waterholes and a shallow beach for crossing the Nepean River, we are maintaining connectedness in all directions.
Our darani, are the white gum trees and like burringali, stars we are being together and showing the way.
Our baduli, waterholes are scattered across primordial sandstone to form our maringun, a big place where we are together, travelling fresh water, brackish water and saltwater.
muringun can be seen as an overarching origins interpreted by Lachlan Macqaurie as “Nowenong immediately opposite to Menangle” (18100, and Similarly by Jim Kohen as "Muringong" (1993; 2010).
Perhaps these significant features and associated values are the things our old ones were trying to convey to explorers and botanists when they began writing about our ngurra yura (Country and People). The main words transcribed from our oral language were “binheny, kirboowallie, carabeely and baragal” which all relate to water sources in the region.
When we are thinking about connectedness as spiritual and corporeal kinship with ngurra, we acknowledge learning as murura gurugali (more than one path from long ago). My learning to date comes from starfish, bull ant, kurrajong, glossy black cockatoo, white cockatoo, barn owl, willy wag tail, red belly black snake, redback spider, possum, kangaroo and dingo.
Kinship can also be experienced as place-time origins for colonial times. As a cultural consultant I am mindful of mutual struggles as well as difficulties my people face with explorers naming our places and dividing Country with borders. Explorers created maps as formal archives which do not always align with our experiences. For example, Norman Tindale's naming a 'Nation as EORA' - yura, which means people. As such, I promote cultural connectedness by asking all Peoples to acknowledge specific family names for the Country where they are living and breathing inspiration... badu bumul burra!
I am introducing my website with the following image titled burramattagal Continuity, to present bangali (making together). The ochre seen here was made in close proximity to the Parramatta Orphans school and the photograph reveals a cultural archive of walking, collecting and thinking about ways to uphold our old ones values of cultural connectedness. The ochre was gifted by the river and like our murura as primordial journeys of eels, we uphold gurugali (primordial) saltwater, brackish water and fresh water.
Venessa Possum burramattagal Continuity, photographic documentation of a temporal site-specific artefact.
To follow are some images collected as early colonial graphic archives...
The first is a map of the area that became known as "the Cowpastures" after explorers appointed by the English Crown found a cave painting of their lost herds. The second and third images are early colonial paintings of our Country which show how our rich biodiversity was maintained prior to colonisation. The fourth image is a detail of a map made by a Crown appointed botanist named George Caley. It shows him naming a cultural feature of my ancestral ngurra, a formation of grasses and small trees as a "Green dingle." This is a traditional site where burning practices were used to cultivate a u-shaped area for seasonal herding of kangaroo and wallaby.
The Cowpastures region: Joseph Lycett c1817, Image courtesy of NLA.
Female Orphan School by Augustus Earle c1825. In the collection of the National Library of Australia, object/281833
Detail: George Caley "The Limits and Boundaries of the Vaccary Forest" c1804; notice the letter E. cultivated as u-shaped area for seasonal herding of kangaroo and wallaby, and below this feature a sharp bend in durrubbin (Nepean River) is our kirbuwali (shallow crossing).