Saturday, November 8, 2008

The Fire Makers, Quilt by Sandy Hart

When Bootoolgah, the crane, married Goonur, the kangaroo rat, there was no fire in their country. They had to eat their food raw or dried in the sun. One day Bootoolgah rubbed two pieces of wood together, and saw a faint spark and then a slight smoke. "Look," he said to Goonur, "see what comes when I rub these pieces of wood together! Goonur said “Split your stick, Bootoolgah, and place in the opening bark and grass that even one spark may kindle a light." They had discovered the art of fire making but agreed to keep their secret from all the tribes. They hid their firesticks in their comebee in the openmouthed seeds of the Bingahwinguls,.

When they returned to camp, they took some of their cooked fish with them. The others tasted it and found it better than the usual sun-dried fish and hungered for it. Great was the talk about how to possess the comebee with the fire stick in it. They decided to hold a corrobboree on a scale not often seen to astonish Bootoolgah and Goonur so they would forget to guard their precious comebee. All the tribes engaged in great preparations to outdo the others in the diversity of colouring and design.

Great was the gathering that Bootoolgah and Goonur found assembled as they hurried on to the corrobboree. But Bootoolgah warned Goonur they must take no active part so they could guard their combee. However, when the Bralgahs bean to dance Goonur threw herself back, helpless with laughter, and the comebee slipped from her arm. Beeargah, the Hawk, who had been assigned to watch them, snatched it. Bootoolgah and Goonur discovered their precious comebee was gone and gave chase, but Beeargah fired the grass with the stick as he ran. Fire become the common property of all the tribes there assembled.

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