EPIC

An epic is a long narrative poem celebrating the adventures and acheivements of a hero... epics deal with the traditions, mythical or historical, of a nation.


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Tiddalick - The Frog Who Caused a Flood

In the time of dreaming
Before the earth was old
Myths were in the making
Legends yet untold

Here began a story
Of one huge enormous frog
Solemn in his glory
He drank from every bog

Tiddalick the great one
Had to quench his mighty thirst
He drank from all the waterholes
So much he nearly burst

He drained the lake and river
The stream and billabong
Soon there was no water left
It was very wrong

Others now grew thirsty
There was no sign of rain
Hot sun scorched the arid earth
No water did remain

Tiddalick's swollen stomach
Was squelchy round and wide
He was so big he couldn't move
The water was inside

Animals assembled
Men gathered with them too
They had to end this great distress
And work out what to do

Boomerangs were useless
Spears bounced off his side
Getting angry didn't help
Even though they tried

The kookaburra had a plan
We need to make him laugh
To hold his side and open wide
We need to show some gaffe

If only we can do that
The water will pour out
We all must work together
To end this mighty drought

C'mon laugh you big fat frog
You're like a bursting pot
If only you could see yourself
Squelching as you squat

Tiddalick moved his mournful head
He had a doleful face
He didn't see the humour
Of smiles there were no trace

The kangaroo and platypus
Wombat and emu
All tried their best to make him laugh
But Tiddalick stayed blue

Some danced and some told stories
Others somersaulted
Tiddalick grew tired and bored
And slept when antics halted

The last to try was Norang the Eel
He was their final hope
He turned himself into a hoop
And wriggled like a rope

The rope stood upright on the sand
Then it began to spin
It went round like a whirlwind
Tiddalick began to grin

Then out slopped some water
Before it reached the sand
Man and beast began to drink
It worked like they had planned

But Norang went on spinning
Till he was scarcely seen
Tiddalick began to chuckle
It really made a scene

As his belly rumbled
The frog rocked to and fro
With his hands upon his sides
A stream began to flow

Tiddalick's mouth was open wide
With water gushing out
A surging tidal river
Spewed like a water spout

It swept away the animals
And covered all the sand
A shining lake of water
Had spread over the land

Now Tiddalick has shrunken
He's just a little frog
Who sometimes hides in desert sands
Or sits upon a log

Quote: - In Central Australia and western districts of New South Wales there are frogs which survive droughts by distending themselves with water until they are as round as balls. Then they bury themselves and wait for the rains to come again. In dry weather the aborigines dig up the frogs and drink the water with which their bodies are filled. These little frogs may well be decended from Tiddalick, an enormous frog which lived in the far off days when men first came to Australia. Who can tell how big he was? Did he tower over the hills, and did the earth shake when he moved his feet? - Australian Stories by A. W. Reed Reed Books 1994


Tiddalick (also spelt Tiddalik) The Frog who Caused a Flood is based on an aboriginal legend aimed at teaching to conserve water and to care for our environment. There are several adaptations of the story, the other being that Tiddalick began to laugh when the platypus came out of her hole. I hope you enjoyed this story from the Dreamtime