she tongay and tongay about daoure
and all that’s left is char and sand
loud cries the lost garrall
for it seems it’s her time too
~ Bailey, Year 10, Poetry in First languages Gundungurra from 'Budan’ (Bird)
The powerful poems of First Nations students published on grand scale on bus backs
Created as part of the Poetry in First Languages (PIFL) Gundungurra program. First initiated in 2018, Red Room Poetry's bus back campaign stems from Poetic Moments, which amplifies newly-created poems on buses, planes and trains, murals and buildings.
In 2019 the bus-back initiative was a collaboration between Red Room Poetry's PIFL Gundungurra program, NSW Government's Saving our Species (SoS) program and Wingecarribee Shire Council. The project aimed to present a poetic and environmental learning project for young First Nations students on Gundungurra Country in the Year of Indigenous Languages.
First Nations students, Jake and Grace, who were involved in the PIFL Gundungurra workshops (Southern Highlands NSW) were excited to see their poems about endangered black cockatoos published on the back of buses.
First Nations student poetry on buses 2018Poems written by four Illawarra students were published on the back of five buses in 2018.
Poetry in First LanguagesPoetry in First Languages (PIFL) celebrates, shares and preserves knowledge of First Nations languages and culture through poetry, music and art.
Poetic MomentsPoetic Moments elevates the visibility and accessibility of contemporary Australian poetry via cultural placemaking with publication of poems in unexpected spaces.
Partners and Supporters
Australia Council for the Arts
Department of Planning, Industry & Environment NSW