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Poetry as Necessity

June 1979, no. 11

Poetry as Necessity

June 1979, no. 11

It is usually true to say that poetry is difficult and criticism easy. In the present case, I am not sure that this is quite so true. What can any critic sensibly say about the present batch of books which range from Bruce Dawe’s Collected Poems 1954–1978, Sometimes Gladness, to reprints of minor colonial verse and includes the gentle nature mysticism of John Anderson’s The Blue Gum Smokes a long Cigar, reverently illustrated by Ned Johnson and produced by Rigmarole of the Hours, and the ambitious regionalism of the two books of Hunter Valley Poets, IV and V, edited by Norman Talbot?


A Voice from the Country by Louisa Atkinson

Mulini Press, $4.50, 32 pp

The reprints of early poems, Two Early Poems of 1833 by Henry Halloran and On A Movement of Beethoven’s and other poems of 1830’s by George Macdonald together with a collection of nature notes by Louisa Atkinson, an early settler in the Berrima district, all produced neatly and inexpensively by the Mulini Press, Canberra will be of interest to historians and to those who like to read the literature which failed to survive.

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