Tearia Teaiwa-Mortimer

Our Story

My mother was screaming, my father was shouting and I was crying in fear. You took me away and raised me your way, you didn’t even care that my soul hurt, or that everyday I had tears. You taught me your language and religion and didn’t let me be myself. And do you know why you did this? Because all you were about was title, money and wealth. You thought you were doing the right thing, thinking my people weren’t raising us right. Well you weren’t, and for years you didn’t let us live upon our land and killed everybody, who put up a fight. You killed everyone who stood in your way, and didn’t stop until the war was won. You lived to conquer everything the opposite of our symbol, red, black and the sun. You took me away from my family and killed all of my friends. And to people who stood up to you, your cruelty didn’t end. You brought animals that killed the ones that were here first. You introduced sickness that weren’t used to, like chicken pox, small pox and all the worst. You destroyed the land, polluted the earth, cut down the trees and didn’t care that we were hurt. When we were taken captive, you made us your slaves and treated us like dirt. One day I decided to run from camp for I was sure I would die of hunger soon. I ran and ran for days and days with my only source of light, the moon. No one to comfort me, my friends and parents all dead. How I wish to have my mother’s warmth while she tucks me into bed. I cried myself to sleep each night that week. I was all alone but then I get the courage to speak. Finally after 70 years you said sorry and admitted what you had done. You let us be ourselves again as equals, and as one. My strong connection to the land is what kept me alive. We are grateful that you apologised to us and now our culture thrives. My mother was screamin, my father was shouting, I never saw my friends again. Finally you notice, finally you care. Still, everyone remembers what you did when I was ten. 

Teachers Click Here

Many of these resources and activities have been developed in consultation with NSW Education Standards Authority (NESA) to ensure that the program meets NSW curriculum outcomes for Stages 3, 4 & 5.