Born on Wakka Wakka land at Barambah, which is now known as Cherbourg Aboriginal Reserve, Lionel Fogarty has travelled nationally and internationally presenting and performing his work. Since the seventies Lionel has been a prominent activist, poet writer and artist; a Murri spokesperson for Indigenous Rights in Australia and overseas. His poetry art work and oral presentation illustrates his linguistic uniqueness and overwhelming passion to re-territorialize Aboriginal language culture and meaning which speaks for Aboriginal people of Australia. In 2012 he received the Scalon Prize for Connection Requital and his most recent collection is Mogwie Idan: Stories of the land (Vagabond) (Photograph by Tony Robertson)
For Him I Died — Bupu Ngunda I Love
For him I loved
For him I became a dove
For him I tamed a game
Why has he taken my love
Wine as shaking my dine
Woe who outer my dinner room
What great sound he calls
What graving sound it gave
Wrap sapping his heart
With dem he got sung
For him I loved
Forgive the tearing
four faces he has seen
Funk hunk drunk
For him I lived He been in a body
I been in a bottler
Since once he send me
Sin onto me
Now sinly I surrender
Sewer poorfully I adore
For him I loved Swear back just to glad
sweet birds just to grand
sweeping fights just to game
a one lone feels his sex
a two cone feeds his senses
a three owns feeds his sick
For him I loved
his silent liniment myths
his sires searcher meek in me
his resting bees many inner tests
even I forward his happy wills
even I forever his papa ills
even I forever his everlasting tills
For him I loved.
He bin in behind my soul
He bin in beloved mindness
He bin in beggar meanness
Why has he taken my lying
Win who in the taken winds
Will be bless my love my love giving
For him I love For him I loved
What great sound he calls calls
For I Come — Death in Custody
in a jail.
Even a Murri wouldn’t know
if him free
The land is not free
Dreamtime is not free.
No money needed.
See that scarred hand at work
that’s cutting away
Jail not for me
but a lot of my people in jail
White jail are cruel
Set up the family, stay away
come to see your Murri
look big and grown
in learning, of our gods teaching.
What they give you in here?
Away from the corroboree
In the fuckin’ jails
Murri get out, so we can fight
like the red man has done
Lord them a come.
My brother die there
in white custody
And I hate the way the screws patch up
and cover up.
He died at the white hands
it was there, in the stinkin’ jails
up you might blacks
Him not free
For when white man came
it’s been like a jail
with a wife and a family
black man can stay in jail
like its home.
Fuck, they hung us all.
Love…walk with me
Love…waken with me
Love…is a black newborn
Camp fringe dwellers are my love
Love is not seen in cities
Love is my Father
Love is my Mother
Scrubs are hid in bush love
and we say
Love is alive and received.
Love is a kangaroo
Love is an emu
Love is the earth
Love is the love of voice
Love is my friend.
And what about us
who has no love?
Well, love smells.
Us Murris knows
It’s love in bad love
Give us love. Give us love.
Our Dreamtiming is love.
Catch my love over a fire
Fire of love.
Culture is our love.
Culture is ourself in love.
The school don’t give love
so we black power give you love
Proud and simply
love is the love
to our lands love.
Love walk with me
Love awaken with me
Now give us the true love.
from New and Selected Poems, Hyland House, 1995
Walk white fellow, as you all can’t write
Our battle just at your sunrise and night sigh ties.
The noble note runs in our native modern now from then.
Black resistance is every were now on written,
Face books there door mat roof an in-laws.
Walk white fella, you all can’t rights us.
First lovers black and loving came and stays
No fables dreams stop our mountain eyes,
Bodies for the dirt tears can’t ours, pains can’t our pens.
Resistance with us makes no trance but struggle over struggles,
The black diligent are our gent, believe it ladies.
We appreciative our fighter of these times
Awaken white vital man physical to a black world women’s call.
They’ll find renewed upsurges.
Continuing the non-silence is what we about
Lazy exterminator in their policy’s
Will fall to a decolonisative voices powered by our master race.
Wall up white fell, as your impediments will not combined.
Our men sang weak walk on white fell as meant economic
Are seen to wider our children’s fight.
The continent still not there’s even in numbers contribution historical upheavals
Walk in sleep, walk in lifeless is still,
The dreamer’s white man men made
Under Over the Rainbows
It’s fair we have charcoal colours people
Being black child skinned by past.
It’s fair we have European cloth
But our art black not lacked.
We have darkest blue-eyed baby
White with complexion from a dark race.
It’s fair physically to keep love in own
Race speaking singing English or not.
We may material all thing white parentheses.
Yea but caste is half fullest to all human mentally black people.
They mightn’t mine old bludger sex anymore, the naked began to swim.
Bones blooded addicted spirit gave fair care a drug voice so alcoholic.
Better being of black sky light morning night never being palmed by lies.
Moon sliver peace just us now,
Sun redden please just us now,
Stars umbilical scalpel surgical the sterilized.
Wind dwellers purest those selectivity,
Specimens blanket enlighten burden of those rich unwittingly on arrival.
Its first race wills keepers to the lasting are not seen touched or spoke on toiled.
It’s benediction of Father Mothers smoke fire cherish sweetness symmetrical our souls campfire said wrote now painted.
Precision your blackfellas now babes
The race of your birth did know colour.
It’s fair when we black people off the charcoal not mined
I abstract salt: pans
I am we to the river in sky before the rain fell from the ground.
I am softly in wild nest in the city decent as veins land cut over devils dust
My gum mouthed washing cling all mountainsides.
I am those Australians snow hugged in the hot aerial elaborate systems.
I am wombat ready and the fight plains were roads kill them every day.
I am all killed no spirit police men’s,
Yes millennia soled guarded man off a tribe not colour-blinded.
I am dispossession in style baring about by possessions
Now artist concentric they motif privy were divulge boomerang the intriguing features.
Well a marsupial beliefs is not beliefs when not a leafs.
I am in account in gorges absorption,
Yes paws and print head somnolent are ancestral travels.
I am the Pop art and the pointillism for resemblance I will identifiable all broken families.
I am notion even central people heard my speaking,
I am broadly at your enterprises.
The Country Anywhere Race On Races
Racist are not children’s
Racist are not Mothers
Racist are not Fathers
Give unity peace a chance
Racism is a sick disease
As a place for Non humanity
Racism as no race in Australians
For the first race is the only race.
Racist are instil by cheaper cap chaps
And those that joke on slip mouth are drops of sin bad food bad bodies of all ages.
Racism owned up changes the pace off no space
As the ship code to learn.
The ray of the sun shines for all under on solar.
The earth equally birth human
Yet the world’s laws class those poor minds backwards,
When a racist sit with a first Australians proud
Of one race made a lace to lust we all comes from women’s