Dreamtime

Magickal Stories

Black Opal :: Magickal Stories //\\ Dreamtime :: How the Birds got Their Colours

 

Back in the Dreamtime (Alcheringa) all the bird tribes were the same colour, and that was black.

One day the Peaceful Dove caught his foot on a sharp prong of wood on a broken off tree branch. The Dove called out piteously for help, and all the other bird tribes heard his cry and came to the place where the Dove lay. The Dove was in great pain and his foot had swollen up.

The other birds gathered and provided shelter for him with their wings. Some brought water for him to drink and some bathed his foot with water. All except Crow, who was in a bad mood and was angered by the attention the other birds were giving the liitle Dove.

Crow harangued the other birds and told them that they were wasting their time, the Peaceful Dove was done for. And indeed the foot was festering and swelling more all the time. But the other birds paid the Crow no heed, and finally they had had enough of him and chased him away.

Then the Galah had an idea. She rushed forward and bit the Dove’s swollen foot with her sharp, hooked beak. The Dove cried out in pain and a myriad of colours, all the colours in nature flowed out of the Dove’s foot and splashed all over every bird gathered ‘round.

Some got only a little colour, and some got one or two colours only. Some were splashed with many colours, and the Rainbow Lorikeet was splashed with a so much colour that he looked like the rainbow itself!

The Galah was splashed with rosey rink and grey, and the little Peaceful Dove was almost drained of colour till he was a light mottled grey-brown.

And so it was that all the bird tribes got their beautiful coloured plumage, except for the selfish, bad-tempered Crow who remains in his original black to this day.


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Lynette F. Watters
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