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Aboriginal Dreamtime Story Of O'Briens Creek Topaz

Thousands of years ago Immamandoo lived on a flat area of land north of a place called Mt Surprise. Immamandoo was the turtle Jukurita, father of the fresh water turtles which now bear his name. He was also father of the tribe of turtle men who lived there. Their hunting grounds were lush and green with lovely streams of clear water, lagoons full of lillies, covered with ducks and magpie geese. The turtle men were very happy.

Pakadringa the rain-maker, having such fine rivers and waterfalls around, grew very lax in his work. He failed to sing the necessary chants to the rainbirds who took their gifts to places where they were more appreciated. The turtles saw the creeks and the river levels falling and knowing what was going to happen, laid their small clear eggs everywhere, hoping that they would hatch out before the creeks dried up. It was too late. Warapranala poured her beams on the eggs but they did not hatch out. The turtles themselves died everywhere, turning into the huge rocks which stud the creeks for miles around.

During all those thousands of years, Warapranala has stored sunlight in the clear pebbles which once were the turtle eggs. Today white men release that sunlight by carefully cutting and polishing. They call the pebbles topaz.

But the white men do not know - how could they know? Only blackfellows whose fathers were there at the time know what happened. Plenty of eggs are still there to find, mostly under the bodies of the turtles, the eggs of Immamandoo. Immamandoo does not frequent those creeks today. He still lives in the fresh waters in other parts of Queensland, in places where Pakadringa does the work he is supposed to do.

* "Take Your Pick To Agate Creek", Hap Wheeley






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