Australian Identity Through Poetry.
This essay will analyse the poems Clancy of the Overflow written by A.B. Paterson, and compare and contrast it with Andy's Gone With Cattle by Henry Lawson. Both of these poems are about life without the men that have 'gone a-droving' in Queensland. Droving is one of the original stereotypes of Australia, and is an important part of our identity.
Clancy of the Overflow is one of 'Banjo' Paterson's most famous works. It is a wistful poem comparing the freedom of droving to the monotonous toil of city life. This is expressed with phrases such as "For the drover's life has pleasures that the townsfolk never know". Paterson uses many techniques to portray the conflicting lives of city slickers and farmers. He uses visual imagery to perfection, painting a vivid picture of 'Clancy', leading a jolly life droving cattle and living under the stars, and then compares it with "the foetid air and gritty of the dusty, dirty city through the open window floating". 'Banjo' also uses metaphor, again to emphasise the differences between city and country life, especially in verse six, with "And in place of lowing cattle, I can hear the fiendish rattle of the tramways and the buses making hurry down the street" which also appeals to the senses. Clancy of the Overflow is a very ordered poem, using metred verse, with an aa bc dd ec rhyme