It is the London winter of 1928. Fog blankets the city.
Pedestrians and commuters along one of the city’s busiest thoroughfares are arrested at the spectacle directly outside the Edwardian baroque marble facade of Australia House on the corner of the Strand and Aldwych.
They see an elderly, longhaired, Australian Aboriginal man. He is dressed in a black greatcoat. The only contrast to his dark appearance is a full, silver beard and a cape upon which are attached dozens of small white rubber skeletons. He also wears a sandwich board placard of the type used by street vendors, all across the city, to advertise their wares.
But this old man, Anthony Martin Fernando, a toymaker by trade, is not advertising his products. Instead, his placard condemns the appalling treatment of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people in colonial and newly federated Australia.
Fernando repeatedly points to the little skeletons and cries out to passers-by: “This is all that Australia has left of my people.”
Fernando was also a regular speaker at London’s Hyde Park Corner during the 1930s.
The attached pic of an excerpt from ‘letters to editor’, in a FNQ hardcopy newspaper [yes, they’re still around] carried one of the best promotions I could get for my FfC [10 X book] series. However, [Choc Mundine] I’m guessin’ you have to be fairly angry to even compete in that game, & I’ve seen your $-standings in the boxing-world’s $$$-list. It’s impressive to say the least & I’m sure PT Barnum would have been proud of your efforts.
I’m also extremely happy that readers are getting the gist of my books (I’ve had several wonderfully insightful personal messages from readers recently), as a foundation stone of the Fethafoot warriors training, is to solve issues without violence: nor fear or favour.
Following the Dreaming laws of/for balance. However, if the ‘shameless’ [always humans/language-creatures] are unable to smell the rotting stink of their corruption & be willing to practically repent; they are put down quickly and painlessly, if at all possible – though sometimes the Mother or The great spirit may intervene for the victims in these pages.
The FfC series is fiction; however, my unique descendants in this formerly ‘sacred’ land had a lot of lived experience to share with the modern world & unfortunately, in the rush to ‘own’ this once-sacred land & its riches, much has been lost & wasted. And it is only now, after the western world’s busy-busy, self-centred culture has been seen to deform us & our world that we look back & wonder how our 1st people survived for so long – within a political system covering the entire lands and peoples; though many spoke languages unheard-of at each end of the country. No slavery, no civil wars & an extremely healthy environment; in fact, it seemed that the land & environs was more important than an individual in that society. What a wonderful way to foresee a solid future for the children; those little dreaming things that come from the Mother & Spirit & return to whence after a long walk.
Angry? You need FfC…
Future friends of those soft-footed warriors of the enigmatic Fethafoot Clan: hello and welcome☺
This is my first blog ever and it comes to you on a website I had previously not been able to even imagine (thanks Ally). I hope you enjoy the stories and the site. The Fethafoot series of books (FfC) came about because of several major changes in my life 5 years ago. The life changing events were physical, mental, social, ‘work’ and personal – and they all happened in one awful year. To be honest, I almost gave up. However, because of my aboriginal heritage, I knew my obligations to my immediate family and as parent, grandparent and role model to my extended family and true friends, would never allow such an easy way out. Since being humbled so, I have a much deeper and more aware empathy for all my fellow language-creatures and our common issues; here on this floating planet we call Earth.
Writing the series – while learning the ropes of writing and fiction, along with the new exciting publishing world that followed – gave me a set of crutches that helped me to stagger onward: toward a goal I wish to share with my country and the first-nation people here in ‘Heart-rock land’ – as well as the rest of our world via FfC.
My people, the ancient first people of this land, have faced more hardship than we contemporary Australians will ever know: 50-year droughts and the 2nd Ice age for instance. Not only have we adapted and survived each new event and climate, but have once again begun to flourish in the new society – in all strands of modern life – and, within two centuries. NB * without using terrorism.
The stories are not mine. They came to me via the Great Spirit of our wonderful land. I was merely a conduit that knew English and could type. I did no story planning, gave no forethought to characters, nor thought beforehand where the story would be set. I sat and began to use words to tell stories about my wonderful, adaptive, creative people and wrote the first four stories in four months without thinking or blinking. I wrote and finished the next six tales while travelling Australia, in a car with my dog (a loyal, warm-heated red-cattle dog), after a major personal shock and; was actually in the lands I wrote into the later tales; as I wrote them.
I hope you enjoy the stories and that FfC will inspire the moral ethical aspects of each spirit that may read them. Pemulwuy Weeatunga – masquerading as John M Wenitong