Dorothea Mackellar’s ‘My Country’


Review of Dorothea Mackellar’s ‘My Country’

Reviewer: Sheena Kajal Stickland Patel

This poem ‘My Country’ by Dorothea Mackellar makes me think about how lucky we are to live in Australia and have all the beautiful scenery, landscapes and natural features like Uluru, the coast and many more.
This poem is an Ode poem which is a lyric poem praising the country, so in this poem she is praising Australia. This poem has six stanzas and 8 lines in each stanza. Altogether there are 48 lines in the entire poem. It has an A,B,C,B,D,E,F,E rhyming pattern. It has 3 accented beats per line. This poem has a calm and peaceful sound. It has continuity to the cycles in life.
The poetic devices in this poem are metaphor’s e.g ‘drumming of an army’, ‘opal hearted country’, ‘filmy veil of greenness’ and ‘orchids deck the treetops’. There is personification e.g ‘over he thirsty paddocks’. There is also alliteration e.g ‘for flood and fire and famine’, ‘misted mountains’, ‘tree-tops’, ‘steady soaking’, ‘That thickens’. She also uses repetition e.g ‘Core of my heart my country’. My point of view on the theme in this poem is ‘her beauty & her terror’, because you can have the beauty of landscapes and scenery and you can have the terror of bushfire etc.
Dorothea’s reason for writing this poem is because she was longing for Australia when she was living in England and feeling very homesick. Her target audience for this poem was people in England which is shown in the line ‘My love is otherwise’. These days people are proud of their home.
The tone in this poem is serious, solemn, steady, joyous and respectful. The part when it says ‘Core of my heart my country’ shows the serious passion in her for the land but ‘When we see the cattle die’, shows when we see he sadness. This idea is emphasised in the expressions ‘Her beauty and her terror’ and this part is showing some of the terror in Australia.
I enjoyed this poem because Mackellar is describing Australia in the most beautiful words. The theme shows the beauty in Australia is not perfect. It is sort of saying in a way ‘good vs evil’ because the ‘beauty’ is the good and the ‘terror’ is the evil
Mackellar, Dorothea. 2016. My Country  Accessed 11th September 2016
Mackellar, Dorothea’s image courtesy of: Dorothea Mackellar  Accessed 11th September 2016
Uluru image courtesy of:  Lonely  Accessed 11th September 2016
– Review by Sheena Kajal Stickland Patel (Page) – age 10 years old  09/09/2016
– published on her behalf by ©David L Page 11/09/2016
Copyright: No aspect of the content of this blog or blog site is to be reprinted or used within any practice without strict permission directly from David L Page.

David L Page

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With over 20 years experience in the arts & post-compulsory education, David has lived, studied and worked Internationally including Japan, India, Fiji, the US and NZ. David has extensive interests as per the extensive blogs hosted on his site (see below). Additionally, David has published in both lay texts and academic (peer-review) publications.

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