Today’s post presents another story in Jiwarli with English translation, told to me by Jack Butler on 3rd November 1983 and explained on 17th May 1984. You can hear a recording of the beginning of the story here. There is information about the Jiwarli spelling.
Spotted Nightjar and Bat
This story concerns gabagurda Spotted Nightjar (Eurostopodus argus) and migalyaji Bat (species unknown, but possibly the Ghost Bat Macroderma gigas). These two, who are ngadhal ‘same sex parallel cousins’, kill a man called Bibijungurru, boss of all the people. After some travels they secretly spear him while he is lying in his bough shade. They are caught by the group and punished for their misdeeds by being speared and beaten with boomerangs and women’s yamsticks. Their legs are broken so that now they both lie on the ground when they land and they must both drink water on the wing, rather than being able to stand and drink like other animals.
Spotted nightjar (left) and ghost bat (right)
Gabagurda mandharda migalyaji baja yananyja mandhardawu. Yini bibijungurru. Maadha ngunha mandhardanyjarriyi bibijungurru. Warri nhugubarndi ngunha baja yananyja. Ngunhagayi gajiri¬wari gambarninyjalu gajiriyi gambarninyja ngunhiba yirrara. Ngunha wirlgamanda ngurndinha. Ngurnubarndiba yananyja yardingga yaburrari. Baja gudharra ngunhiraba. Bagalyaburradhu mandhardaburradhu ngunhaburra ngurrabularalaburra. Yananyja ngunhiraba barrundhurru gambaru gajiriyi. Yardingga wandhalarru ngunha. Ngunhiba jundalyala yaburru gambarninyja ngulaba. Julyunyjarri wanggaardu ngadhala. Ngurnubarndiba yanararri ngunharru wurrumalu. Ngulaba gambarninyja gajiri. Murlurrurnirninyja. Yanararringu ngarramarri ngunha gumbiniya ngurndanhu malungga bibinyjila bibijungurrudhu. Nhaarringu ngunhiraba bajawurrinyja. Warri wandharninyjabarndi dhurndi nguluba maadhalu. Yananyjarni ngunhiraba ngarramarri. Ngunha jina ngurndinhamanda marndangura. Ngurndanhu gumbiniya nguwanma yirdijirra malungga. Binyanyja ngunhaba Gudharralu. Migalyajilugayi gabagurdalu binyanyja. Galyarru binyanyja. Wirndubinyanyjarru. Biji wirribuga warndija badharru ngunhiranhaba. Gajirilu gurrjardalu binyanyja. Nhaamalgarringu. Ngurnubandhi gumbiniya warndingu yarrbalbandhi. Ngurnubandhi windhigudharra ngunhiraba windhi wirribugalu binyanyja. Badharninyja gurriyalu. Dhanggarninyja burrardilu wananggu. Wanggirarringurru ngunhiraba gabagurdawungarla migalyajiyi. Ngadhalgarra ngunhirabadhu. Ngadhalgarra mananyja ngunhirabanha wuluwalgarringurru. Wurndarninyja ngarda. Wuluwarninyja. Galarru nhubalu gumbama warrirru minarlarringu yanararri. Maranyjirrirarringu. Bayidhalgarringu nhubalu yalhangga ngurndayi. Baba nhubaluru bajalgarringu wagararringu. Jandagudharra nhubalu gumbama.
The nightjar and bat were angry with a man. His name was Bibijungurru. That Bibijungurru was the boss of the people. They didn’t go along angry from nearby. After they first heated and straightened spears at Mt Florrie, they heated them there at the top. There is a gap there still. After that (they) went north in the (Ashburton) river. The two of them were angry. That was the time of good men when the earth was soft. They went again to straighten a spear. In the river, where was that now? They straightened it there in the river north at Jundalya. The old people used to tell me. After that they went to Globe Hill Station. There they straightened a spear. (They) straightened it. They walked along one behind another while that Bibijungurru was lying in the shade at Bibinji. I don’t know why they were angry. The boss hadn’t given them food. They went along one behind the other. The tracks are still there on the flat rocks where he slept in the shade of a bough shade. They speared him. The two of them speared him, bat first and then nightjar. They speared him in the armpit. They killed him. The mob got up to spear the two of them. They speared them with spears. What will they do? After that each time the mob threw a spear they got up, ducked and came back in reverse. After that the mob speared those two murderers. They pelted them with boomerangs. The women hit them with yam sticks. Then they talked about Nightjar and Bat. They were same-sex parallel cousins. They got those two cousins and broke their legs. They cut their legs. They broke their legs. “You two will live like this unable to walk”, they said. “You can land. You can land on the ground to lie down. You will drink water while flying.”