Copyrightfrom New Collected Poems (Carcanet, 2003), copyright © Les Murray 2003, used by permission of the author and the publisher.
Full track listing for the special recording made for the Poetry Archive
This poem is part of the tour of the Children's Archive by:
Les Murray (b. 1938) grew up the only son of poor farmers in a remote valley in New South Wales. It was a hard background but one that instilled in him a love of the landscape and people of rural Australia which has informed his poetry ever since. Despite unhappy times in his final school, Murray won a scholarship to the University of Sydney. His first published collection, The Ilex Tree, (co-published with Geoffrey Lehmann) appeared in 1965 and has been followed by a steady succession of books that have built Murray a formidable reputation as his country's unofficial national poet.
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