Central Western Plains: Five rivers around Dubbo and Gulambali (Pelican) song

Aunty Diane McNaboe shares stories and a song about her Country
Cultural Narrative: 

I want to tell you a little bit about our river systems around Dubbo.

We have four main rivers, five actually, that we're connected to. So the river behind me is the Macquarie River, or we call it the Wambuul or the Marang bila. Marang bila means really good river. Wambuul is a traditional name for the river. Our totem for the Macquarie River is boo-yu-wal-wal, which is the sandpiper.

The river up a little bit further from here is the Talbragar River that comes into the Macquarie River. It goes under wilay, the brush-tail possum. And then back a bit further we have the Bell River, that runs into the Macquarie River near Wellington. The totem for that is biladurang, the platypus. Those two rivers, the Bell and the Talbragar, are special rivers in that when they flood, they backwash the Macquarie River and that's when we get flood plains in and around Dubbo here.

We have another two rivers that we're connected with, the Dubbo clan groups, and that's the Bogan River, which comes under gulliridge, the sandpiper... Gulliridge is a little peewee, black and white peewee. I had to think about that for a little minute!

And the Castlereagh, the Castlereagh has hidden waterholes and that. And the water will come up for a little bit and then go under water. At Gilgandra it comes in ... Gilgandra means long water having.

I'll share this little one so that it's not lost. So gulambali is the pelican. Gulambali gul is the pelican's doing something to someone else. He's the main actor, the subject in the story, so language is also about songs as well.

So gulambali gul. Yanhamanha. Yanhamanha is chasing something so yanhama gunanha is chasing even longer. Yanhama away gunanha-aaaaa is chasing for a REALLY long time. Gunggula is his, hers or its and guya bung is special fish.

So this song is about gulambali. Gulambali could be parents who are singing for a special fish, a special baby, who'll come along to look after the fish in the rivers, OK, so they'll be special babies.


♪Gulambali, gulambali

♪ Gulambali gul

♪ Yanhamanha, yanhamanha, yanhamanha

♪ Gunggula guya bung

♪ Gulambali, gulambali, gulambali gul

♪ Yanhama gunanha, Yanhama gunanha, Yanhama gunanha

♪ Gunggula guya bung

♪ Gulambali, gulambali, gulambali gul

♪ Yanhama away gunanha-aaaaa

♪ Yanhama away gunanha-aaaaa, Yanhama away gunanha-aaaaa

♪ Gunggula guya bung

♪ Gulambali, gulambali, gulambali gul

♪ Bumarra, bumarra, bumarra gunggula guya bung!

Bumarra, bumarra, bumarra is strike or hit or catch so he's finally got this special fish.

So their baby's coming to look after fish Country.

Mandaangguwu. Thank you.