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Stingray Dreaming

Stingray Dreaming

Through a wall of tears,
bat like and bigger than the world
it glides to the drowning ceremony.
With slit mouth
and lipless like a bull ant’s nest,
it avoids the broken ones
whose grey hairs creep from ankle to knee.

Contagion spreads
and fear.
Not what and if but when and how.
Death percentages.
Face mask dreamers in your dream;
beg, questioning.
Answers come like daylight, streaky, flesh coloured,
easily forgotten.
Not which heaven but for how long?

Brothers, under the skin,
sisters, in the marrow
(don’t look then you’ll see)
hide away and the vision appears.

Style / type: 
Free verse
Review Request (Intensity): 
I want the raw truth, feel free to knock me on my back
Editing stage: 


A grand write on the Ray's, we just have the odd shark here and they also infest our Parliament, but we change them for new ones every so often.
I think that the giant ray as it flies through the Ocean is a beautiful creature.
I like this write..
Welcome back, I look forward to you running a workshop sometime, Yours Ian.T

There are a million reasons to believe in yourself,
So find more reasons to believe in others..

thanks for your comment, I've had some experience of rays but the idea came from an blind aboriginal boy who's dreaming totem was the stingray, apparently it appears in their dreaming intiation as 'bigger than the world'

author comment

I really like the visuals of this write. especially that of the ray...
and the beginning is very clear.. but the second half loses me in a way… so I did something I rarely do, I read the other comments before writing mine

your comment made it clearer and maybe because I don’t know the whole of this boy's dream is why I don’t know to who you are referring in lines such as ‘the broken ones / whose grey hairs creep from ankle to knee' and what 'contagen’

but I love the simile ‘and lipless like a bull ant’s nest’
and I really relate to ‘and fear / Not what and if but when and how’

I once heard the story
(cos I love our skies, being from the country in my youth… so many more to see, and have always loved the mythologies, especially those pertaining to contellations, so became interested in aboriginal dreaming at a very early age)
about the stingray and the Southern Cross…. so I looked it up and copied it straight from the net in case you haven’t heard it before….

The Dhui Dhui story

The Dhui Dhui (pronounced Doo-ee Doo-ee) Story appears courtesy of Russell Butler, of the Bandjin People. The sea country belonging to the Bandjin (‘Saltwater’) people includes Hinchinbrook Island and Lucinda Point on the adjoining mainland of north Queensland, as well as Gould and Garden Islands and part of Dunk Island.

Where you look due south toward Hinchinbrook (Muddamuddanaymy, pronounced Mudda-mud-ah-nah-me) from Dunk Island (Coonangalbah, pronounced Koo-nang-gol-bar), two boys paddled out in a canoe and dropped their stone anchor. The elders had told them not to fish on that sand spit because there was a big shovelnose ray (Dhui Dhui) that lived there. The boys fished anyway. The ray bit their line and started to tow them around in the canoe but the boys wouldn't let go of the line. It towed them around the ocean for a while before going down the Hinchinbrook channel. They disappeared into the horizon. By then, it was getting dark and everyone was worried about the boys. As they were looking south with the night sky rising, the Southern Cross appeared, which was Dhui Dhui (the shovelnose ray) and the two pointers (the two warriors in their canoe).

love the write
love judy

'Each for the joy of the working, and each, in his separate star,
shall draw the Thing as he sees It, for the God of Things as They are.'
(Rudyard Kipling)

The ray is used as an image of nature's revenge, the second half is a vision of a coming plague (although its imaginary) I have worked as a teacher and lived with tribal aboriginals near Alice at Yirrara College, I became a 'skin brother' to the blind boy mentioned who became my 'skin uncle'. I had a dreaming experience 'caterpillar dreaming' after visiting a sacred site.
My blind student was from the central desert but his father was from Elcho island, from Gurramul's clan. I used to fish on mud flats and one day a stingray swam beside me as I walked through the shallows. I didn't feed it and normally rays swim rapidly away when you walk near them, so that experience stuck in my mind.
hope this helps

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