prayers after readings on racism

I’ve only just begun to read some of the books listed at the end of this post, recommended by my friend Jude Murphy. I am so pleased ‘The Yield‘ won the Miles Franklin. In Tara Jane Winch’s story, the dictionary of narrated meanings of the grandfather’s language is beautiful beyond words. The prayers below are not directly related, but are a response to a slow awakening.

Great God of Light who cannot be deceived,
You see the bitter costs borne by First Peoples.
Burn bright against the privilege of whiteness;
Show our blindness, make us contrite.
Shape a deep repentance in our turning, 
Help us live the truth of Sorry
in making reparation.

Ancient of Days who sees all brokenness,
No harm escapes your sight.
You see what we who call you ‘Lord’
did to the people who were First.
You see the culture we’ve ignored,
You see the languages erased,
You see their dignity, our shame.
You see the forced removal.
You see our arrogance, their loss.
No harm escapes your sight.
Call us to answer for the harm we’ve done,
to share the cost, to pay the rent.
To honour the ancient knowing
of those who always knew
that Spirit is in this place.

The reading list of my friend Jude Murphy


The Yield, Tara June Winch (2019)

Truganini Journey Through the Apocalypse, Cassandra Pybus (2020)

The White Girl, Tony Birch (2019)

That Deadman Dance, Kim Scott (2010)

Too Much Lip, Melissa Lukashenko (2018)

Taboo, Kim Scott (2018)

The Swan Book, Alexis Wright (2013)

Barbed Wire and Cherry Blossoms, Anita Heiss (2017)

Non Fiction

Sand Talk  How Indigenous Thinking Can save the World,  Tyson Yunkaporta (2019)

Growing up Aboriginal In Australia, ed Anita Heiss (2018)

Australia Day, Stan Grant (2019)

Dark Emu, Black Seeds: Agriculture or Accident? Bruce Pascoe (2014)

Sovereign Subjects: Indigenous Sovereignty matters, ed by Professor Aileen Moreton-Robinson (2007)

Salt Water An Epic Fight for Justice in the tropics, Cathy McLennan (2018)

Finding Eliza: Power and Colonial Storytelling, Larissa Behrendt (2016)

Not Just Black and White A conversation between a mother and a daughter, Lesley and Tammy Williams (2015)

Welcome to Country A travel Guide to Indigenous Australia, Marcia Langton (2018)

Welcome to Country, Joy Murphy Wandin, (2016)


A Man Called Yarra, Stan Yarramunua with Robert Hillman (2018)

Warren Mundine in Black and White, Race, Politics and Changing Australia, Warren Mundine (2017)

Becoming Kirrali Lewis, Jane Harrison (2016)

Tell me Why, Archie Roach(2019)

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