ON several occasions in the mid-1970s I trekked on foot into the Petermann Ranges in Central Australia with a group of elderly Pitjantjatjara men.
We left our Land Rover at the foot of the range and followed the rugged valleys into the high country. The old men left their clothes in the Land Rover and only took their spears and woomeras with them.
What they showed me and what I learned in those stark mountains has remained with me since.
I came away with my own tjukurpa (dreaming) and totem and yet, if you asked me to describe what those visions and lessons were and what is the meaning of having the waiuta or possum as my personal totem, I’d be taxed to articulate it.