Australia · autumn · floods · garden flowers · native Australian birds · poetry · rain

Flooding Rains

Tonight I heard on the news that it rained in every town throughout the state of New South Wales today. The whole of the eastern coast of the state, and towns further north into southern Queensland, are on alert for excessive rainfall and flooding.

While media alarmists cry out “climate change,” the realists among the press – and yes, fortunately, there are some realists remaining in Australian media circles – reminded viewers tonight of a famous poem, once taught to most school aged children. The poem, “My Country” by Dorothea Mackellar, written between 1904 and 1908, is a timely reminder of the predictable harshness of the climate in this country I call home.

“My Country” is a beautiful poem. It romantisises Australia, while at the same time emphasising the ruggedness and challenges of living in this land. The second verse of the six verse poem is the most famous and is the verse I am sharing today. The other five verses can be found on the Official Dorothea Mackellar website.

My Country

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!

~~ Dorothea Mackellar.

Australia · clouds · Mount Warning · poetry · rain · sunrise · Tweed Valley

Summer Showers

Summer Shower
By Emily Dickinson

A drop fell on the apple tree,
Another on the roof;
A half a dozen kissed the eaves,
And made the gables laugh.

A few went out to help the brook,
That went to help the sea.
Myself conjectured, Were they pearls,
What necklaces could be!

The dust replaced in hoisted roads,
The birds jocoser sung;
The sunshine threw his hat away,
The orchards spangles hung.

The breezes brought dejected lutes,
And bathed them in the glee;
The East put out a single flag,
And signed the fete away.

Australia · clouds · Mount Warning · poetry · Tweed Valley · winter

Clouds

The Cloud

The sanguine Sunrise, with his meteor eyes,
And his burning plumes outspread,
Leaps on the back of my sailing rack,
When the morning star shines dead;
As on the jag of a mountain crag,
Which an earthquake rocks and swings,
An eagle alit one moment may sit
In the light of its golden wings.


And when Sunset may breathe, from the lit sea beneath,
Its ardours of rest and of love,
And the crimson pall of eve may fall
From the depth of Heaven above,
With wings folded I rest, on mine aëry nest,
As still as a brooding dove.

That orbèd maiden with white fire laden,
Whom mortals call the Moon,
Glides glimmering o’er my fleece-like floor,
By the midnight breezes strewn;
And wherever the beat of her unseen feet,
Which only the angels hear,
May have broken the woof of my tent’s thin roof,
The stars peep behind her and peer;

And I laugh to see them whirl and flee,
Like a swarm of golden bees,
When I widen the rent in my wind-built tent,
Till calm the rivers, lakes, and seas,
Like strips of the sky fallen through me on high,
Are each paved with the moon and these.
~~ Percy Bysshe Shelley.