NAIDOC 2017 — Diyari yawarra mandru-mandru

This week, 2nd to 9th July 2017 is National NAIDOC Week. The theme this year is “Our Languages Matter”. Around Australia, there will be national celebrations of the importance, resilience and richness of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander languages.

On the Dieri Yawarra blog this week we present a traditional story in the Dieri language — this is the only traditional story that was able to be recorded in the 1970s from the language teachers who grew up in Dieri country. All other Dieri stories have been lost because of the impact of Christian missionaries from the 1860s onwards.

Here is Part Four of the story (click to see Part One, Part Two and Part Three). First we give the words in Dieri and then a translation into English. If you want to study the structure of each sentence in this part of the story you can download a PDF that gives the word-by-word translation and grammatical structure.

Dieri Story — Part Four


Thurararna, thangkuthangkuparna wapalha, dityitha yarlawa nhawu durnkarnanthu, waparnanhilha.
Pula wapayi.
Dityi parlpa thurararna parlkayi.
Ngardanhi nhayiyi.
Minha nhawuparrawu?
Ngathata nhawumatha.
Kardiyali kakuyali warararna wanthiyi.
Nhawuwa ngathangathata ngaldrarniyi.
Minhangankalha nganayi ngaldra nhinha?
Warrurirna tharriyi nhawu.
Payali nhinha kunalkarna warrayi.
Warrulha nhawu ngamangamayi pirta miri.
Minhangankalha nganayi ngaldra?
Mirimiri marla nhawuparra.
Minha yini?
Nganhi warrangantyu.
Nganhi ngarla ngunyari.
Kurnutha yatharna wanthiyi.
Mayi, ngaldra nhinha yinkamatha minhayangankalha.
Nhinha payirringankalha ngaldra.
Ngardanhi pulali warayi yinka, wararna nhungkangu kankunhi.
Nhulu ngardanhi pardayi yinka.
Ngardanhi nhawu ngariyi yinkanhi, warrulha warrulha ngarirna, pulali parrumarna ngarirnanhi.
Mayi, kiralha manirna wanthiyi pulali, nandranandralhatha nhinha.
Warru, kuna, paya kuna.
Minhangankarna wanthiyi kakuyali kardiyali yinha?
Kunali thuriparna wanthiyi yinanha, pardakarna wanthirna yinanha, warararna thikalha.
Ngardanhi marniyali wirripayi pulali.
Ngardanhi thurarayi, thangkuthangkuparna wapalha.

English Translation

(They) slept to go in the morning, going before the sun had come up over there
They went.
(They) slept on their journey for some days.
Then (they) saw (something).
“What’s that?”
“That’s (our) younger brother”
“(Our) brother-in-law and sister left (him) long ago.”
“He’s our little younger brother!”
“What shall we do with him?”
“He has become all white.”
“The birds have shat on him.”
“He is sitting all white at the top of the tree.”
“What shall we do?”
“He is right at the very top.”
“What are you?”
“I am left-handed.”
“But I am right-handed.”
One of them said.
“Well, let’s make this string something or other.”
“Let’s make it long.”
Then the two of them threw the string, throwing (it) to the boy.
Then he caught the string.
Then he came down on the string, all white, white coming down as the two of them pulled (him) down.
Well, they got a boomerang and hit him all over.
White, faeces, bird faeces (came flying off).
“What did (our) elder sister and brother-in-law do to you?”
“They poured shit all over you, having brought you (here) to leave you as they went back.”
Then they painted (him) with fat.
Then (they) slept to go in the morning.

<To be continued …>

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