"I Love a Sunburnt Country"

| | TrackBacks (0)

In 1908, just seven years after Australia's federation, a young woman named Dorothea Mackellar wrote a tribute to her homeland. The poem, "My Country," is sometimes called by the first line of its second verse, the beginning of the poem proper after a prefatory stanza.

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!

Here is audio of the poet herself reciting her work, many years later, accompanied by photos of Australia that illustrate "sapphire-misted mountains," "pitiless blue sky," "jewel sea" -- this "wilful, lavish land."

Mackellar was a third-generation Australian, whose grandparents arrived from Scotland in 1839. Her official website describes the sentiment that produced this poem.

The first draft of My Country was written in England when Miss. Mackellar was feeling homesick for Australia. Dorothea Mackellar wanted the verse to express her deep and true love for her country. It was re-written several times before a satisfactory completion.

She resented the tendency of acquaintances in her youth to discredit Australia, and to refer to England as 'Home'. As a young girl Dorothea was clearly aware of the variety and beauty presented by the Australian landscape. The majority of her poetry has taken its imagery from her love of the natural Australian scenery. The original title for "My Country" was "Core of My Heart", and was the title used when the poem was first published in 1908, in the London Spectator Magazine.

Here is a choral setting of the poem:

0 TrackBacks

Listed below are links to blogs that reference this entry: "I Love a Sunburnt Country".

TrackBack URL for this entry: http://www.batesline.com/cgi-bin/mt/mt-tb.cgi/7911

About this Entry

This page contains a single entry by Michael Bates published on December 6, 2016 9:15 AM.

Je ne regrette rien: France creates anti-conscience safe space was the previous entry in this blog.

Qantas: "Today, you're in safe hands" is the next entry in this blog.

Find recent content on the main index or look in the archives to find all content.

Contact

Feeds

Subscribe to feed Subscribe to this blog's feed:
Atom
RSS
[What is this?]