Slides used in Week 3: Clemente Week 3 Slides
We began by celebrating the work of all those students who have managed to get their first blogs up. Well done you digital technical wizz-kids!!!! It is wonderful to begin to hear how you are taking so much from the content and are willing to share your own experiences. Great work all of you… and more to come from the rest of the class!
Jenny Bird https://nannieseven.home.blog/
Julie Hawkins https://julieisajunkie.home.blog
We then had a ball today deciphering Charles Harpur’s early 19th Century depiction of a hot noon in an Australian forest. While his vocabulary is still so “British” he has a passionate appreciation for the distinctiveness of the Australian Bush in all its sounds and silence; especially the silence and the deep and penetrating quiet. Harpur was clearly a romantic in his spiritual awareness of the magnficent power of the Australian bush! And I really feel that the class as a whole “got it!!!!”
There is such magic in the sound and imagery of the lines: Till rising in the sunshine higher, / Its shards flame out like gems on fire. The sound and imagery here capture this moment of incandescence in which the beatle, the sunlight and the wonder of the bush all come magically together.
Here is that magnificent poem as a whole :
Not a bird disturbs the air!
There is quiet everywhere;
Over plains and over woods
What a mighty stillness broods.
Even the grasshoppers keep
Where the coolest shadows sleep;
Even the busy ants are found
Resting in their pebbled mound;
Even the locust clingeth now
In silence to the barky bough:
And over hills and over plains
Quiet, vast and slumbrous, reigns.
Only there’s a drowsy humming
From yon warm lagoon slow coming:
‘Tis the dragon-hornet – see!
All bedaubed resplendently
With yellow on a tawny ground –
Each rich spot nor square nor round,
But rudely heart-shaped, as it were
The blurred and hasty impress there,
Of vermeil-crusted seal
Dusted o’er with golden meal:
Only there’s a droning where
Yon bright beetle gleams the air –
Gleams it in its droning flight
With a slanting track of light,
Till rising in the sunshine higher,
Its shards flame out like gems on fire.
Every other thing is still,
Save the ever wakeful rill,
Whose cool murmur only throws
A cooler comfort round Repose;
Or some ripple in the sea
Of leafy boughs, where, lazily,
Tired Summer, in her forest bower
Turning with the noontide hour,
Heaves a slumbrous breath, ere she
Once more slumbers peacefully.
0 ’tis easeful here to lie
Hidden from Noon’s scorching eye,
In this grassy cool recess
We also explored D.H. Lawrence’s amazing description of the landscape south of Sydney which he sees as having an invisible beauty, beyond our comprehension and yet somehow carrying within it something almost aboriginal. Lawrence like Harpur (but 100 years later) was trying to capture the amazing, mysterious feeling of the bush.
We had some excellent discussions on both of these works and you can hear the full discussion right here. Please also see the white board images that went with our talk.
Underneath the white board images are a few new blog topics for you to try!
NEW BLOG TOPICS
1/ Describe in your own words what you understand is Charles Harpur’s experience of the bush?
2/ Try to point out by way of analysis how can we feel Harpur’s experience through the words and images he has chosen (in their sound as well as their meaning)?
3/ Write a poem about your own experience of a hot Australian summer’s day. It does not need to be set in the bush!
4/ Try to describe what you think D.H. Lawrence means by the “invisible beauty” of the landscape.
5/ Describe your own train journey through an amazing part of the Australian landscape. You can do this either in prose or poetry…..
6/ With reference to Charles Harpur’s poem “Midsummer Noon…” describe how you think his choice of words in sound as well as meaning helps us to feel his experience?
Remember you only have to do one…. But if you want you can of course do more!!!! REMEMBER ALSO THAT YOU CAN CREATE YOUR OWN TOPIC AS LONG AS IT HAS SOME RELATION TO WHAT WE WERE DOING IN CLASS THIS WEEK! YOU CAN OF COURSE DRAW EXTENSIVELY ON YOUR OWN EXPERIENCE!!