Lewis has been immersed in Noongar culture from an early age - as much as it is possible for a white, middle-class boy from the city to be. More than half the kids at his pre-school were from Aboriginal backgrounds and Lewis would slip into the playground vernacular as soon as he walked through the gate. "'Ee ma brudda," he would say to a classmate when showing him the family tree he had drawn. His speech was peppered with Noongar words - things weren't just 'cool', they were 'daardi' - and took on strange grammatical twists and turns, the odd sentence rounded of with "unna?"
It was incredibly moving then, to hear the language spoken and stories shared by their traditional owners as part of the Wirlomin Noongar Language and Stories Project. Dual Miles Franklin literary award winner, Noongar writer Kim Scott, who considers the project his most important work, was on hand to help project the pictures on to the screen. But he took a back seat to his countrymen and women, with whom he has worked for nine years reclaiming the stories of their elders after they were uncovered in the notes of an American linguist who visited these shores in 1931.
We are a house without religion, but I realised I needed to provide some balance to the Noongar rainbow serpent creation myth when Lewis asked how the first living creature had been made, reassuring me "I know how the land and the sea was made - that was the Wagarl." We brought home an illustrated edition of the Jesus Storybook Bible from the op-shop, and the children dived head first into the stories. Their favourite was Jonah and the Whale.
It is a great story, in any language.