Monday, January 26, 2009

284. Bran Nue Day!


Three seemingly disconnected topics come together with this prompt. a) Australia Day b) Barrack Obama and c) an Aboriginal film in the making.

On Monday January 26th, it is Australia Day; much flag-waving and beach-cavorting for the Whites, but a day of mourning for the original inhabitants. Last week saw the rise to power of a man of Colour; something to raise the hopes of all non-whites. And I have just heard that a film version of an Aboriginal musical is to be made this year.

The name of the musical is 'BRAN NUE DAY!'
If that's not serendipity what is!


BRAN NUE DAY!

They have lived here
Since the end of
The last Ice Age,
Forty thousand years ago!

Captain Cook,
A 'Johnny-come-Lately',
Came here
Just over two hundred years ago!

Since then
'We' have been White!

'They are from the Stone Age!' 'we' said.

They were
 Dispossessed,
Victimised,
Slaughtered,
Infected,
Raped,
Imprisoned!

They were also treated kindly.....
But on a lesser scale.

'We' are a nation of Twenty Million.
'They' are a nation of Twenty Thousand.

'We' say
'But they hadn't progressed at all!'

Look where progress has got us!
In debt!
Out of luck!
Choking on our own progress!

They had no need of progress.
The Earth gave them
All they needed....
Food, Warmth, Water.
They thanked the Earth
By being kinder to it
Than we were to them.

Our worst sin was taking away
Their self-respect.
From this arose problems
With drink, violence,
And worse.

Now there is a man of Colour
'On the throne'
Of the most powerful nation on earth.

Let us hope that this news,
This spirit,
This change,
Will reach the driest, poorest little 'humpy' in the Outback.

And bring on a

'Bran Nue Day!'



Bran Nue Dae tells the story of Willie, a young man growing up in the pearl fishing region of Broome. His mother Theresa, who has high hopes for him, sends him to a religious mission for further schooling. Willie is kicked out by the school after an incident and ends up meeting Uncle Tadpole. Together they con a couple of hippies into taking them back to Broome where more revelations await. Ernie Dingo will play Uncle Tadpole and Geoffrey Rush will play Father Benedictus.

7 comments:

BJ Roan said...

I believe this is my first visit to your blog, but I'll be back. I thoroughly enjoyed reading your poetry, but especially Bran Nue Day.

BTW:I don't recall my mother ever spanking me. On this occasion, she merely frowned, which was worse.

Thank you for stopping by mine.

Linda Jacobs said...

Great braiding of the three events!

Reader Wil said...

Excellent!! My daughter was married to an Aboriginal. Unfortunately they divorced, but she is still considered to be a member of the family. Her mother -in-law is a friend of mine. And my daughter has just finished a book about one of the brothers of her MIL. He had a difficult life, but luckely married a Wonderful German wife. They are a happy couple and have three children. He is my age 75 and an artist.

Sylvia K said...

Great poem, as always. It is indeed a brand new day!

paisley said...

i enjoyed this so much as i just read something the other day a forwarded email that stated from the native american indian point of view how the white man had screwed up this country in no time at all,, while the indians were here"forever" and everything was alive and fresh and working....

i would love to have had the opportunity to live the simpler lifestyle they lived,, as well as your aborigines before the ever civilized white man made his mark......

Maggie May said...

Thought provoking post. I do believe that "we" are guilty of some terrible things done to Aboriginal people.
"We" also did some awful things to our own people who were packed off to Australia sometimes just for being an orphan & then letting the children get abused horribly.
At least the folk in Australia are now a civilized nation & are aware of the mistakes of the past, despite the bad beginning

Kat said...

you have an uncanny knack of making people see things in a different perspective. Great poem. Really enjoyed the message.