A Story of
aka Lake Tyers
The launch of the book occurred yesterday, and in so doing Wayne has
invited all of us to both own and respect the processes of Bung Yarnda
(Lake Tyers). His message was one of simultaneous ownership and sharing
by everyone who comes into contact with the system. If I may interpret
his message, and hopefully support it, I can see many parallels with my
own views with his passion for what the lake means to him.
The lake's regular sealing by sandbar in spring, sleeping over summer,
filling with autumn storms and for a period of time swelling deeper and
deeper until breaking out again, is a natural cycle that is powerful and
awe inspiring. Unpredictable to any great degree, this cycle is very
frequently the topic of discussion for many local people who feel that
connection with natural and biological world.
Wayne makes the very potent point that the lake is a spiritual focal
point for many people in this area, and while the indigenous feelings
about the lake are one way of appreciating the lake, he acknowledges all
walks of life can gain spiritual insight if they allow the lake time to
go through the cycles at its own pace. Observation and patience are
powerful personal attributes.
Another thread running through the book is this lake is an example of
many estuaries along the Australian coast line that in effect share the
Bung Yarnda cycle and deserve the same respect. Bung Yarnda is locally
often referred to as the Lake Tyers Aboriginal Trust, where as Wayne
makes the very strong proposal we should see the whole catchment area as
the "Bung Yarnda" system, including the fish and plants on the other
side of the bar in the ocean. This book contains a simple, but powerful
environmental and cultural message for all of us around the world.
When the lake opens it spews out water that has been trapped behind the
bar for months, and carries all the remnants of the run off from the
largely bush catchment. It also carries fish from the lake to the
ocean, and when it becomes tidal, allows daily assisted passage for all
sorts of animals and plants in and out of the lake and ocean. This
rejuvenates stocks differently each year, on both sides of the bar. A
natural form of lake husbandry that has stood the test of time for many
I have one personal tale to tell. Our kitchen window has a small
corridor of view out onto the ocean, close to where the lake often
breaks open. One day we saw whales breaching and cavorting in the
current coming out of the lake. In my imagination they were excited by
the scents and tastes of Bung Yarnda, like the voice of an old friend, a
marker for them find their way along the coast.
Thanks Wayne for the very special day, and especially the dance troupe
who added immeasurably to the impact of the occasion. The book is a
good reminder in this materialistic world that spiritual aspects of life
can guide us very clearly to paying more respect to the world around us
- be patient with it, don't meddle, and it will repay us in abundance.