As she’s collecting some kindling nearby, she thinks about Darel’s dreaming story about how the kangaroo got her pouch, and his narration of it:
‘This story is about a mother kangaroo, her baby Joey and an old wombat. When the world was young, the mother kangaroo didn’t have a pouch like she has now. Not having a pouch made it hard for her to look after Joey, because as soon as her back was turned her baby would wander off exploring.
One day an old and grumpy wombat turned up. He kept complaining, over and over, about being weary and blind, and not having a friend in the world. When he told the mother kangaroo that he hadn’t had anything to drink or eat for days, she felt sorry for him, even though he wouldn’t stop grumbling. She told him she would be his friend and help him. She told him to hold onto her tail and she would take him to water and food.
So off they went, although it took a long time to get to where she wanted to take him, because the old wombat had trouble holding onto her tail. She had been very patient. But, by the time the old wombat was drinking and eating, she realised she needed to get back to Joey.
So, she took off, and after searching high and low, she finally found Joey asleep under an old gum tree. She figured he was alright, so she bounded back to where she had left the old wombat to make sure he was still alright too.
The mother kangaroo was almost back to where she had left the old wombat when she sensed danger. Then she spotted a hunter moving close to the old wombat, so she made a lot of noise to distract him and led him far away, until the hunter finally gave up and went home.
By now, she was worrying again about Joey, so she bounded back to where she had last seen him, and with great relief found him still asleep under the old gum tree. She woke him and together they made their way slowly back to where she had left the old wombat. But no matter how much they searched they couldn’t find him.
The reason they couldn’t find the old wombat is because he had in fact been, Biyaami, the Creator Spirit, who had come down from the sky to test the kindness of his creatures.
The mother kangaroo was rewarded for her kindness. Biyaami presented her with a dilly-bag to tie around her waist, so she could carry Joey wherever she went. When she tied it to her waist though, the dilly bag magically turned it into a pouch. And, from then on, Joey could be kept safe. She didn’t need to worry about him getting lost again because she could take him with her wherever she went.’
Rachel likes the way the dreaming stories always seem to have a moral of some type. They teach and reward kindness, respect and responsibility when it is shown, not only to other people but to the environment as well. She imagines aborigine mothers telling the dreaming stories to their young children as they go about their daily lives, after seeing a family of kangaroos just like she had.
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