Portrayal of country and nature
By Saman Gunaherath
Leslie Allan Murray (Les Murray) is another special poet in Australia. He was born in 17th of 1938 and currently resides Bunyah, in Australia He attended primary and early High School in Nabiac and then attended Taree High School. In 1957 he began study at the University of Sydney in the Faculty of Arts and received the honest degree.
He developed an interest in ancient and modern languages, which qualified him to become a professional translator at the Australian National University, where he was employed from 1963 to 1967. married Budapest born fellow-student Valerie Morelli in 1962. They have five children.
In 1971 Murray resigned from his occupation of translator and public servant in Canberra (1970) to write poetry full-time Les Murray has had a long career in poetry and literary journalism in Australia. When he was 38 years old, his selected poems was published by Angus & Robertson. Biographer Peter Alexander writes that "all Murray's volumes are uneven, though as Bruce Clunies Ross would remark, "there's "less good" and "good", but it's very hard to find really inferior Murray'.
Murray edited the magazine "Poetry Australia" (1973-79) in 1991 he became literary editor of Quadrant, the monthly journal of Australian literary and cultural events. He has edited several anthologies, also. Les Murray has published around 30 volumes of poetry and is often called Australia's Bush – bard. He is a traditional poet whose work is radically original. His consistent commitment to the ideals and values of what he sees as the real Australia. He is almost universally praised for his linguistic dexterity, his poetic skill, and his humor.
Murray's strength is the dramatization of general ideas and the description of Animals. Machines or Landscape. The most attractive poems show enormous powers of invention, lively play with language, and command of rhythm and idiom.
In these poems Murray invariably explores social questions through a celebration of common objects from the natural world, as in "The Broad Bean Sermon", or machines, as in "Machine Portraits with Pendant Spaceman". Always concerned with a "common reader", Murray's later poetry ("Dog Fox Field", "Translations from the Natural World"), recovers "populist" conventions of newspaper verse, singsong rhyme, and doggerel.
American reviewer Albert Mobilio writes in his review of "Learning Human" Selected Poems that Murray has revived the traditional ballad form. He goes on to comment on Murray's conservatism and his humor:
In 2003, Australian poet Peter Porter, reviewing Murray's New Collected Poems, makes a somewhat similar paradoxical assessment of Murray:
In 2007, Dan Chaisson wrote in The New Yorker that he is "now routinely mentioned among the three or four leading English – language poets" Murray is now being talked of as a possible winner of the Nobel Prize in Literature.
In 1972, Les Murray was one of a group of Sydney activists who launched the Australian Commonwealth Party, and authored its unusually idealistic campaign manifesto. During the 1970s he opposed the New Poetry or "literary modernism" which emerged in Australia at that time, and was a major contributor to what is known in Australian poetry circles as "the poetry wars".
In 2005, a short experimental film based on five poems by Murray was released. It was directed by Kevin Lucas and written by singer-festival director, Lyndon Terracini, with music by Elena Kats-Chernin. Its cast included Chris Haywood and indigenous Australian actor and dancer, Frances Rings. The five poems used for the film are "Evening Alone at Bunyah", "Noonday Axeman", "The Widower in the Country", "Cowyard Gates" and "The Last Hellos".
This is one of the best poem by Les Murray. He named it
Us all sore cement was we.
Not warmed then with glares. Not glutting mush
under that pole the lightnings tied to.
No farrow-shit in milk to make us randy.
Us back in cool god-shit. We ate crisp.
We nosed up good rank in the tunnelled bush.
Us all fuckers then. And Big, huh? Tusked
the balls-biting dog and gutsed him wet.
Us shoved down the soft cement of rivers.
Us snored the earth hollow, filled farrow, grunted.
Never stopped growing. We sloughed, we soughed
and balked no weird till the high ridgebacks was us
with weight-buried hooves. Or bristly, with milk.
Us never knowed like slitting nor hose-biff then.
Nor the terrible sheet-cutting screams up ahead.
The burnt water kicking. This gone-already feeling
here in no place with our heads on upside down.
He has been rated by the National Trust of Australia as one of the 100 Australian Living Treasures.
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