Dear Les Murray…

Write a letter to either Judith Beveridge, Les Murray or David Malouf telling them what you have found of greatest interest in their writing today.

Dear Mr Les Murray,

Let me first begin by saying, I completely understand your poem “The Cool Green” as I, like most other members of today’s society, am somewhat guilty of letting money control my lifestyle. While I agree with your sentiments whole-heartedly, it truly is a difficult feat to do otherwise especially as a young person in the world today.

What I found incredibly interesting about your poem is the way that money’s very purpose has been entirely subverted. Your poem highlights the idea that instead of us using money, money is using us and controlling our every move. Your line “but money is never seen nude” speaks to me particularly. In my interpretation, this means that we never see money at face value and the true repercussions of being enslaved by it. While we often see it as something to take lightly and spend freely, “millions eat garbage without it.” This quite literal statement really encouraged me to think about how I spend my own money. While I am often caught up in being able to buy things that I want, there are so may people who do not have enough to meet their very basic needs.

Your final stanza really reinforces your opinion on money and the way that we have let it control society. The fact that you dare to state that money diverts our attention from the beauty and meaning in the world, in this case “poetry, ideology, religion”, allows us for reflection on what we do value and what we should value. The final line “it didn’t want our souls” is particularly powerful as it suggests that we, as consumers, willingly gave up our souls to money. This powerful statement is the perfect way to end your poem as it leaves me (and the rest of your audience) questioning their own lives and values.

I thank you for your wonderful insight in this poem,

Kind regards, Tamara.




Write a short creative or critical piece that is inspired by any of the works that we have looked at this week.

The free verse poem I have written for this weeks post is inspired by the emotions explored in John Shaw Neilson’s poem “The Orange Tree.” In this poem, the perspectives and meaning of the tree to a young girl and an older man are explored and shown in very different ways. The theme of differing perspectives is what influenced my poem as it describes an experience that has very different emotions attached to it for each individual.


Can’t move. Can’t breathe. Can’t think.
The sweat pours down my back
Joining with the sweat of others;
A shower of emotions emitted.
Every person glued into a makeshift community
Together and yet,
Some cry, some laugh, some scream.

My heart beats, my head hurts
I stumble but can’t fall,
It’s too tight, my body aches,
My head spins and my muscles defy me
The air my lungs can find is not enough but
I scream my throat raw for no one to hear
and the tears fall- the jewels of my very soul.

And yet
Every second is beautiful,
Every second I capture in my mind,
Every second I feel



The classic image portraying different perspectives- a rabbit or a duck?