Daily Archives: February 8, 2008

WordPress offers a new stats thing

This one tells you for any period you chose, even the whole life of the blog, what URLs people have clicked on. Fascinating, actually.

In the case of Old Lines from a Floating Life the story since April 2006 is, limiting myself here to sites clicked to more than 100 times, and do note all these links open in your present window: 615 clicks Read the rest of this entry »

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Posted by on February 8, 2008 in blogging, miscellaneous stats


I am not sorry… but…

75 I am not sorry about rescued children, where that was genuinely the case. By that I mean those, whether Aboriginal or other, who were taken from circumstances where their staying would have been worse than their going. But, as the Sydney Morning Herald rightly says this morning in We’re warming to an apology, but ignorance is rife:

The statistics [from a Galaxy poll commissioned by GetUp!] confirm that less educated, non-urban, blue-collar workers and those who are unemployed or retired are more likely to be in the No camp. Is that because they are ignorant of the issues, which are complex? Or is it because they were closer to the conditions from which many indigenous children were taken?

Ignorance abounds in online blogs and forums. Many do not understand that the apology will be for those who were removed because of their skin, not their parents’ neglect or desire for them to be educated. Many do not understand that the apology will not address every grievance of every indigenous Australian.

In all, 61 per cent of those with an opinion said yes to an apology and GetUp! says the No camp is dissolving. But you can’t teach some old dogs new tricks.

But I am sorry nonetheless, because there was more to the removal of children than good intentions, some that we would still recognise as good but also some that we would not. As I have said before:

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Posted by on February 8, 2008 in Australia and Australian, Brendan Nelson, generational change, History, Indigenous Australians, John Howard


Australian Poem: 2008 series #6 — Henry Kendall

Now here is a poem I learned in primary school around 55 years ago!

The Last of His Tribe

HE crouches, and buries his face on his knees,
    And hides in the dark of his hair;
For he cannot look up to the storm-smitten trees,
    Or think of the loneliness there—
    Of the loss and the loneliness there.

The wallaroos grope through the tufts of the grass,
    And turn to their coverts for fear;
But he sits in the ashes and lets them pass
    Where the boomerangs sleep with the spear—
    With the nullah, the sling and the spear.

Uloola, behold him! The thunder that breaks
    On the tops of the rocks with the rain,
And the wind which drives up with the salt of the lakes,
    Have made him a hunter again—
    A hunter and fisher again.

For his eyes have been full with a smouldering thought;
    But he dreams of the hunts of yore,
And of foes that he sought, and of fights that he fought
    With those who will battle no more—
    Who will go to the battle no more.

It is well that the water which tumbles and fills,
    Goes moaning and moaning along;
For an echo rolls out from the sides of the hills,
    And he starts at a wonderful song—
    At the sound of a wonderful song.

And he sees, through the rents of the scattering fogs,
    The corroboree warlike and grim,
And the lubra who sat by the fire on the logs,
    To watch, like a mourner, for him—
    Like a mother and mourner for him.

Will he go in his sleep from these desolate lands,
    Like a chief, to the rest of his race,
With the honey-voiced woman who beckons and stands,
    And gleams like a dream in his face—
    Like a marvellous dream in his face?

Henry Kendall Read the rest of this entry »

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Posted by on February 8, 2008 in Australia, Indigenous Australians, OzLit, poets and poetry, Reconciliation


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