'Blanket story' by Edwin Lee Mulligan | States of Poetry WA - Series Two

Sleeping under a blanket, half asleep, I wrapped myself tightly, feeling the warmth after a cold night. I thought I was in a dream and wished it would be a good one. And as I spoke to myself about what this generation had to do with me, and the purpose in this life I’ve been given, all of a sudden I went into a deep dream. It happened so fast, it was like being sucked into a tunnel through a vacuum, Willy Willy, tornado and a twister.

My whole body went numb, paralysed. I couldn’t feel anything except the rhythm of my heart beating. As it beats it became louder and the louder it became the more heavily it weighed and the more heavily it weighed my spirit grew into a formation, becoming larger than a life image. My spirit transmitted, descending within the earth, and transforming into one of mother earth’s recognisable landmark monuments she created.

At that point I became gigantic and muscular, stretching for kilometres. In a way I had the earth in the palm of my hands. And looking at my hands I knew it was a symbol of great significance and high priority as an offering that was prepared for a celebration.

After that transformation to a dream I opened my eyes and what was before me left me breath-taken. I became a mountain overlooking vast flood plains. The ground was so fertile and rich having layers of minerals that were attached to my nerve systems, running with water and river. I became one with this earth. Pretty much like the blanket that I wrapped myself around that night but on a grand scale.

And then a voice I heard that spoke to me that felt encouraging to my spirit. The spirit of the land spoke to me, they said: Can you feel the connection to this land? I turned around under the gaze of my ancestors and softly replied ... exactly.

Edwin Lee Mulligan


‘Blanket Story’ was commissioned for the dance theatre production Cut the Sky (2015) by Marrugeku.