Posts Tagged ‘Judith Wright’

Last week year 9 submitted their essays on the poetry of Judith Wright and its perspectives on the relationship between the Australian people and the Australian landscape. Here are some of the points we came up with in class:

Bora Ring

  • a bora ring is an Aboriginal dancing circle, the one in the poem has been abandoned, which symbolises the loss of Aboriginal culture in modern Australia;
  • the tone of the poem changes from regret to anger at this loss;
  • Wright uses personification, “the grass stands up”, “the apple gums mime a past corroboree”, to reinforce the emotions in the poem;
  • she also uses biblical allusion, which shows her intended audience to be reasonably educated and Western.


  • this poem remembers the bullock teams and their drivers who were the lifeblood of inland Australian in the 18th and 19th centuries;
  • biblical allusion is again used to highlight the loneliness of the driver in a harsh landscape (he is pictured as Moses);
  • the poem ends on a high note, again using the image of Moses to portray the notion that the bullock drivers were founders of this “promised land”.

The Surfer

  • in this poem we shift our gaze from Australia’s past to its present;
  • intensely physical (sexual) imagery is used to express the connection between a surfer and his landscape, the ocean;
  • later in the poem the tone moves from joyful to sinister, with the sea being pictured as a wolf which snarls and gnaws on the beach.


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