My Country gave us the quintessential Australian phrase: “I love a sunburnt country.”
This beautifully illustrated version of the famous poem is a favourite at our house - the images are so in keeping with our personal experience of Australia.
When I was young my parents offered me money ($5) to memorise the entire poem. I made it – and ever since it’s been something of a party trick to be able to recite the whole poem, including the little known first verses that begin “The love of field and coppice…”
As I recall, my far more altruistic sister memorised it without incentive and recited it for my mother for Christmas one year (it was a hit!).
As Australia Day rolls around again, and coming out of summer holidays spent in the country and on Moreton Island, this book has made its way back to the coffee table, to be leafed through in quiet moments.
It reminds me of the good fortune I enjoy in living in this ‘opal-hearted country’; indeed I do love our sunburnt country.
For Australians or for anyone who loves Australia, this is a wonderful picture book, great for all ages. You might also like to take a look at our ‘Australia’ category for some more truly beautiful books and, while My Country is Dorothea Mackellar's best-known poem, she wrote many others; Colour is especially lovely.