“One day you live somewhere, you call dat country home. Smell like dis place. Earth. Sea. But make you happy again. We send all dem black fella birds remind you your promise. Remind you your story. Then you know it’s time. Time to be dat story. Live dat story in your heart. Live your true Dreaming.” ~ Auntie
I woke yesterday to the mournful cry of the black cockatoos. Black cockatoos are never just birds for me. They are a spiritual presence in my life. A strong tie back to the land where I was first welcomed to country, the wild remote Kimberley of Western Australia.
Now I live on the opposite side of Australia, but this place ties me energetically back to the Kimberley, and my wise old Aboriginal Aunties. Somehow, living here, they feel stronger in my heart.
This country where I have my farm, Byron Bay and its hinterland, is home to the Arakwal People. The Bundjalung mob have called this place home for thousands of years. There is strong Aboriginal energy here. It nurtures me at every turn.
The past few days I’ve been feeling better. Stronger. Yesterday I woke with a sense of energy and purpose for the first time in over a year.
As I sat in meditation the mournful cries of black cockatoos seeped into my consciousness. At the end of my meditation, as I stretched and breathed the cool morning air I watched them sitting in the big old hoop pine near my back door. So many of them.
“There’s my Aunties“, I thought to myself, and tears pricked my eyes. My heart was back in country, and I could feel the red dust in my veins.
Soon Ben and I were in the ute, driving down to Byron Bay to read the papers and have an early morning coffee.
I took a notebook and began jotting some ideas down. To one side I also wrote a shopping list on the back of an old envelope, because its been weeks since I’ve been well enough to shop and we’re running low on basics.
“Good,” Ben said as he sipped his coffee. “Shopping. We’ll go tomorrow.”
I was careful not to let him see the ever-expanding list beneath it.
I began to plan some ideas and goals for the weeks and months ahead. Mostly they were things to write. Old manuscripts to edit and tidy up for submission. Some e-books and courses. Things for my new website. Words to get down on the page, bit by bit, now that my brain is working and I have a little more energy. Things I thought I should be writing.
I was proud of myself. It was a sensible list, with no crazy deadlines. It would allow me to rest, write and rest some more. But oh, how good it felt to be creating some kind of plan.
As we sat on the sidewalk outside Mary Ryan’s a sudden mad cacophany of screeching filled the air. What seemed like a battalion of white cockatoos flew directly up the street, making a line for the hoop pines that rim the edge of the beach. Some of them alighted in the paperback above me. A single white feather fell down and landed in my breakfast.
More soared up the street. Seven white birds, strong and vibrant. They whooshed past our table and a tear slid down my cheek. Seven birds. Seven Aunties. I felt them all beside me. I heard their voices in my ear.
The trees at the top of the hill near the beach were filled with cockatoos.
I looked down at my list. Was that really what I wanted to write?
All I could hear was Auntie’s voice:
“Now you got your Story, your Spirit no longer lost. That Dreaming inside you make you understand who you are. That Story how you gonna walk this world.” ~ Auntie
When I got home I put my list away and spent some time in the kitchen instead, baking a cake, doing some dishes, preparing some food for the week ahead. I was lost all of a sudden. I had no confidence in my list. What was I supposed to write?
I tossed that question around in my head all day.
Late in the afternoon Ben came up from the river paddock with a present for me. A wedgetail eagle feather.
“It reminds me of one of those old-fashioned quills,” he said. “Maybe it’s time to start writing again.”
There’s a fresh white page in front of me, longing to be filled with words. I’m going to trust that just as I feel guided back to writing, what to write shall also be shown to me.
And of course, I’m open to suggestions. 🙂
22 thoughts on “Wise Birds Come Visiting”
The cockatoo helping me read this post approves of it, totally. Write whatever comes to your heart. The creative process is healing, too.
nicole you write so beautifully, just begin, anywhere, doesnt need to be a particular starting point, write anything, write rubbish and write i dont know what to write, your heart will guide the way, and then you will be off. i enjoy every post you share, dont think, just release….its going to be great!!!!!
I happened upon your site yesterday and felt an immediate connection to you. I live in Alberta, Canada and my daughter and I publish a monthly magazine. I would love to publish some of your writing. I cannot pay you as the magazine is complimentary and the advertisers cover the cost of printing. Have a look at our website at http://www.thenewsyneighbour.com to see what we are all about. Let me know what you think. A new voice and new ideas is what make our little magazine different from others. would love to hear from you.
Oh Nicole, I’ve been waiting for this post from you. I never dreamed it would come along in such a profound way. But then …. of course it should be profound. What an inspiration you are, your indigenous connections are and your marriage to such a special man is. Sending you all my love. xoxo Jo
I love your blog!!! So deep and spiritual and strongly linked with traditional ways!!!! Very eager to see what becomes written on that page . . . 🙂
I am happy that you are feeling better, stronger and have a sense of purpose and energy for the first time in such a long time. That is wonderful. I am sure that what you need to write, will come to you xox
I find it most interesting that there are 7 Aunties. The stories of the 7 sisters is a common thread throughout the Aboriginal culture in Australia. Different groups, all different stories, sometimes landmarks to mark the stories, but always 7 sisters. The opening cermony of the Sydney Olympics included a story of the 7 sisters, it was the common threme that brought all the aborigine ladies together to perform. Not only is it in the Aboriginal culture but it is also throughout the world, many other countries have the story of the 7 sisters too. A lot of these stories also relate to the seven sister star constellation.
It must also be the week for feathers, they have been dropping every where for me as well. Including on my front door step.
I hope you write a biography about your Kimberly stories. I would purchase it in a heartbeat! love, pamela
I so resonate with your “feelings” about the Black Cockatoos; I think they are letting me know I am loved and safe and my “family” is with me. And I love-love-love all you write but especially your Kimberley episodes. Your messages are always so-o meaningful; thank you Nicole X
I also love your writing…………..just saying………….
Beautiful Nicole your writing has saved my life, I would not be here if I wasn’t guided to this site. I love your stories they make me smile, give me vision & hope but most important they are making me a better person. Love T
Thanks Nicole. I was sitting at the Beach Hotel in Byron having Chai with my best girlfriends on Saturday morning and the Cockatoos visited me as well. I’m house sitting in Rosebank and the Black Cockatoo’s have been coming in close on occasion but the white ones….. they keep following me everywhere…. they keep saying “it’s time!…… it’s time!”
Thanks for an awesome blog…. perfect timing! 😉
Lovely to hear that you are on the way to more of your writing again. I was thinking this past week when you might be resuming your workshops? I wonder if there’s some writing that may also evolve into some further workshops also, not planned, just allowing it all to create perhaps… Loving your stories of the Aunties, your sharing of your connection helps us all to connect, with the land, her custodians and the magic between. Blessings x
I know that connection to the earth and the West Kimberly. I’m missing it at the moment. Thank you for your post, it has inspired me to reconnect. X bless
Thank you Nicole! I’ve just repeated a wonderful weekend workshop here in SA called Goddess Within. It’s 7 years since the last time and it was really time to complete the circle. I woke up after a very restless sleep. In my dream I was warned the 3 wolves would take back my inner child if I didn’t nurture him. I was confused just how to do this…..until I read your blog. I’m going to write. All my wonderful dreams over the past couple of years have, bit by bit, woven themselves into each other and now make so much sense. I’m going to pull out all my random notes and half awake scribbles and write them properly. Actually I don’t think I’ll need many of the notes. I haven’t been allowed to forget the important ones and they’re starting to take up too much memory space. My head is going to need a plug in hard drive or a defrag if I don’t do something soon! Who knows what my writing will lead to but it will be fun!
It’s so wonderful to hear you sounding so much better. Lots of love from someone who reads your blog every day. I hope one day to meet you. Celia xx
That in itself was just beautiful 🙂
Beautiful post and set of experiences for you. To wake with purpose and energy, one day I hope I know what that truly feels like. So wonderful your Aunties are helping you find your new way during this wobbly beginning it is there. So happy for you and the right words will come tumbling out as you sit with your new quill by your side. xox
I love reading your Blog… Thank you! When I had the reading with you my favourite thing was your interpretation on reading the Aura and the different colours that you see. I would love for you to write about that :). I really enjoy reading your Kimberley story… It would make a fantastic book! I am happy for you that you are feeling better. Blessings of Love and Light Nicole x
Beautiful blog. I’ve had similar feelings of certainty then uncertainty. I find it frustrating and destabilising but I’ll try to remember to trust! <3 so glad you're feeling better xx
Great blog…. As they all are…
I love reading everything you write Nicole. I look forward to your posts. I believe no matter what you write we all will be following you with baited breath!
Another course would be awesome! Have a gorgeous day beautiful lady x
Actually I would love to read your thoughts on objectivity!! And also how to rid the body of heavy metal toxicity. Mmmwah x