Janganpa Jukurrpa (common brush-tail possum (Trichosurus vulpecula) Dreaming) travels all over Warlpiri country. “˜Janganpa“’ are nocturnal animals that often nest in the hollows of white gum trees (“˜wapunungka“’).
This story comes from a big hill called Mawurrji, west of Yuendumu and north of Pikilyi (Vaughan Springs). A group of “˜janganpa“’ ancestors resided there. Every night they would go out in search of food. Their hunting trips took them to Wirlki and Wanapirdi, where they found “˜pamapardu“’ (flying ants). They journeyed on to Ngarlkirdipini looking for water. A Nampijinpa women was living at Mawurrji with her two daughters. She gave her daughters in marriage to a Jupurrurla “˜janganpa“’ but later decided to run away with them. The Jupurrurla angrily pursued the woman.
He tracked them to Mawurrji where he killed them with a stone axe. Their bodies are now rocks at this place. Warlpiri people perform a young men“’s initiation ceremony, which involves the Janganpa Jukurrpa. The Janganpa Jukurrpa belongs to Jakamarra/Jupurrurla men and Nakamarra/Napurrurla women. In Warlpiri paintings traditional iconography is used to represent this Jukurrpa. “˜Janganpa“’ tracks are often represented as ‘E’ shaped figures and concentric circles are used to depict the trees in which the “˜janganpa“’ live, and also the sites at Mawurrji.