Friday, 30 January 2009

A sunburned country

"I love a sunburned country
A land of sweeping plains
Of rugged mountain ranges
Of drought and flooding rain
I love her far horizons
I love her jeweled sea
Her beauty and her terror
‘Tis the wide brown land for me"
The Australian poet and writer Dorothea McKellar wrote her best-known poem 'My Country' at the age of 19 while homesick in England in 1908. The second stanza of this poem (above) is well-known to most Australians; the first stanza being about England is probably less well-known: -
"The love of field and coppice,
of green and shaded lanes
Of ordered woods and gardens
is running in your veins.
Strong love of grey-blue distance,
brown streams and soft, dim skies-
I know but cannot share it,
my love is otherwise."
OK, so blogs should have some poetry sometimes, but also a little irony: Veggie growers in sunburnt South Australia have been doing it tough this past week, and we're expecting another week of weather topping 40C (+104F) with no relief in sight.

Even keeping the water up to the garden is no longer enough; various fruits and vegetables are starting to suffer from sunburn and will have to be shaded to survive.

Perhaps Maggie is quite right to pick her tomatoes green and eat them now, before they are solar-roasted into oblivion...

At least the evenings are pleasant, with the planet Venus sitting up there tonight next to a new moon.


Maggie said...

I reckon we may have to have more poetry and some funny tales to get through this week.

Anonymous said...

THanks for reminding me of what a brilliant poet Dorothea Mackellar was.
I am planning to send the words of this poem to my daughter who now lives in Los Angeles in the hope it makes her just a little homesick for Oz!
Its also nice to be reminded that there is beauty in a sunburnt country especially knowing that sooner or later the rain will come changing the colours of the landscape yet again,
a nice post Andrew,