My Country by Dorothea MacKellar

My Country by Dorothea Mackellar.

It’s a poem that most Australians will recognise.  It’s gentle prose praising Australia’s beauty.  One of my favourite poems, it’s iconic and patriotic, but it’s also a very beautiful poem.  I couldn’t help but fall in love with these verses:

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!

A stark white ring-barked forest
All tragic to the moon,
The sapphire-misted mountains,
The hot gold hush of noon.
Green tangle of the brushes,
Where lithe lianas coil,
And orchids deck the tree-tops
And ferns the warm dark soil.

I remember these lines from when I was kid.  I always remember “I love a sunburnt county, a land of sweeping plains”.  I can’t remember when I first heard it, but I know it’s been with me since I was a kid.  Whenever I hear those words, I can help but think about how much I admire Dorothea Mackellar‘s prose.  It’s funny that even as a kid, I knew just how amazing those two lines were.  I’m not a poet, nor do I take much time to read poetry unless it’s relevant to the literature I’m studying.  It’s hard for me to be motivated by poetry, even if I want to be a writer, because I know I can’t write like that.  Poetry seems a long way away to me, and yet I call myself a writer.  Maybe, I think I fear that I’m not good enough as a writer.

But every time I think about this poem, and I read these verses, I feel, surprisingly, that I can do it, that I can turn prose as fine as this.  Hmm, well, I still have some time before it comes to that stage.  Anyway, this is one of my favourite poems of all time.  I just love the turn of prose and the iconography.  I love the brilliant imagery and the personification.  It makes me love Australia even more!

(Oh my bad, what kind of post is this?  haha, I didn’t even say anything particular except blab on about how great this poem is.  Lol!  Anyhooo….!)

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