Wednesday, July 1, 2015

Happy Birthday Dorothea Mackellar

Dorothea Mackellar was an Australian poet born this day in 1885, making this her 130th birthday. Although she considered the poem Colour to be her finest work, she is best known for the poem My Country. Not sure if you know it? Here’s an excerpt I’m sure you’ll remember:

I love a sunburnt country,
 A land of sweeping plains, 
Of ragged mountain ranges, 
Of droughts and flooding rains. 
I love her far horizons, 
I love her jewel-sea, 
Her beauty and her terror - 
The wide brown land for me! 

Although best remembered for this evocative poem, Dorothea’s poetry covers a wide variety of topics from the Australian landscape to the landscape of the human psyche. The James Cook Library has a selection of her work available here. So during the semester break why not unwind and take the time to enjoy some timeless poetry from one of Australia’s best poets?

And if you are in the mood to learn more about Australian literature, why not have a wander around AustLit, Australia’s “definitive information resource and research environment for Australian literary, print, and narrative cultures”? Led by The University of Queensland, AustLit is a non-profit, research-driven collaboration between a network of researchers from Australian universities and the National Library of Australia.

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