Tuesday, August 14, 2012

My Country - Vienna Boys Choir rendition

The Vienna Boys choir have set Dorothea MacKellar's cult poem "My Country" to music. One of the highlights of the upcoming tour of Australia by the Vienna Boys choir will be singing the poem "My Country" by the beloved Australian poet Dorothea Mackellar. Australian Composer Elena Kats Chernin discusses the challenge of writing the music to this iconic Australian poem.

My Country

The love of field and coppice,
Of green and shaded lanes.
Of ordered woods and gardens
Is running in your veins,
Strong love of grey-blue distance
Brown streams and soft dim skies
I know but cannot share it,
My love is otherwise.

I love a sunburnt country,
A land of sweeping plains,
Of ragged mountain ranges,
Of droughts and flooding rains.
I love her far horizons,
I love her jewel-sea,
Her beauty and her terror -
The wide brown land for me!

A stark white ring-barked forest
All tragic to the moon,
The sapphire-misted mountains,
The hot gold hush of noon.
Green tangle of the brushes,
Where lithe lianas coil,
And orchids deck the tree-tops
And ferns the warm dark soil.

Core of my heart, my country!
Her pitiless blue sky,
When sick at heart, around us,
We see the cattle die -
But then the grey clouds gather,
And we can bless again
The drumming of an army,
The steady, soaking rain.

Core of my heart, my country!
Land of the Rainbow Gold,
For flood and fire and famine,
She pays us back threefold -
Over the thirsty paddocks,
Watch, after many days,
The filmy veil of greenness
That thickens as we gaze.

An opal-hearted country,
A wilful, lavish land -
All you who have not loved her,
You will not understand -
Though earth holds many splendours,
Wherever I may die,
I know to what brown country
My homing thoughts will fly.

1 comment:

AstridsSoapbox said...

Because I could never renounce Australia, I became a dual citizen only when the US relaxed its laws some years ago. But my heart will always stay with that beautiful land down under. Dorothea MacKellar's poem always brings tears to my very favorite poem.