Read our Yabun community poem

We were so excited to once again be a part of Yabun Festival in Victoria Park on January 26.

Over the course of the day we asked visitors to our stall to contribute a line of poetry to answer the question 'What does January 26 mean to you?' The results were an emotional and inspiring poem created by our community and live-tweeted to our Twitter account.

Scroll down to read the poem in full, and a massive thanks you to everybody who contributed.

 

What does January 26 mean to you?

Through peaceful dialogue we are still 'DIVISIVE'

Yorta Yorta UNCEDED sovereignty PEACE and GOODWILL

Celebrating the land I was born on and the beautiful people

Going to have a swim and play in the park

The smoking ceremony brings us all together

A privilege to share the day with Indigenous Aussies and their talents and strengths

Together we will reach a community of compassion

Today we are all Australians

Today we respect and reflect on all Aboriginal people

My way of protesting the removal of children by DOCS

Acknowledging strength and survival!

Celebrating our unity and diversity and understanding our broad heritage

Time for the sovereignty of First Nations to be the foundation of this island continent

The foundation of this island continent

Acknowledging our First Nations and their survival over the hundreds of years

Walking together, breathing the same air (with respect to Uncle Max)

Understanding each other's cultures without preconceptions

Being One Together

To continue to learn and grow - looking to the past, moving to the future

Spending time with all Australians, old and new, of different cultures and days and lives, coming together as one

January 26 invasion and destruction of Aboriginal culture

Looking forward to a day when we can celebrate Australia together, inclusively.

A day that makes me feel strange - how to move forward?

Acknowledge pain and celebrate joy

A day to recognise + celebrate the Indigenous culture + history in our country we live in

A love of the country, a sadness for Indigenous culture

A contradictory celebration of community

A day of thanksgiving, and remembrance

Family is everything - community is all families together

Getting in touch with my history at Yabun

Time for a change.

Reflection on what was and what can become on the future

Harmony and integrity bind all people

I wish that dinosaurs could come back because we would be able to tame them

Loving and sharing a wonderful culture

Celebrating the survival of my culture and how far we have come

Being with family

Stayin Strong Always.

Change. Recognition. Love.

Reconciliation and joy

Invasion Day, but also the recognition and survival of Aboriginal culture

An opportunity for us to truly make a change and acknowledge the truth of our past

Australia Day means to me sorry day

Australia Day is a day to be as one

To be united

Spending time with Family

Australia means coming together

Recognising the true owners of the land

Celebration, community, coming together

Recognition, Pride, Respect

THE END AND A BEGINNING

Celebrating family and Community

Think about always was, always will be Aboriginal Land

Coming together to embrace and connect

Community, culture and love

A family is only as happy as its unhappiest member

A day of grief and mourning that cannot, should not be celebrated!

We embrace our story; it’s a history. What’s mother going to do when she comes for you

The Aboriginal story is our story

It comes from the arrival of the first fleet. I think it’s quite offensive that we celebrate it

To share one another’s culture. To create a healthy community and Australia

Family, friends and coming together as Koori people

Celebrating and mourning the culture of history – made by black and white fella

It means hurt and pain and suffering

Celebrating and mourning together

An opportunity to truly unite as one

I feel ashamed that our government insists on celebrating the birth of white Australia

My great grandad came here in greed. I’m here today to contemplate this and heal with some love

A chance to listen and learn about my country

Keep the fire burning. Always was - Always will be

Celebrating 230 years of INDIGENOUS STRENGTH!

At Yabun rejoicing in the happiness of community filling the park

What does January 26th mean to me? January 26th is a way for Indigenous people to say and show that this is their land. It is a recognition for them. It doesn’t necessarily mean that only Indigenous people can celebrate it, or participate, it is an opportunity for everyone to celebrate too and be recognised.

We are all Australians

A time to once again reflect the massive injustice First Nations met. The reason for annual discussion and debate no-one wants to see more fighting and hate.

The opportunity to wrong a right. The opportunity to embrace the light. The chance to love and embrace the most beautiful race

I feel sad that January 26th is looked upon a celebration. It’s a day I want celebrate but AUSTRALIA DAY should be on the 1st of January

We need to change the date. Then we can all hang out with our mates on this date. I’m non-Aboriginal and I don’t even participate, because I would like us all to feel great.

Everyone who has come before, is here now and will be in the future

Time to stop and reflect

Find my family Chapman. Find old family Yuboo Gungarda. Make new family, stay strong

Connecting and celebrating indigenous culture and growing towards a better future

Getting together. Living together. Holding each other.

Courage to see we are all of us alive. Welcome to the new, recognise the old

A day to remind us to look down at our feet and know what land we stand on.