Gugubarra* presents its first 2020 afternoon of conversation, poetry and music entitled “What country, friends, is this?”
This is the question Shakespeare’s heroine Viola asks when she arrives in Illyria after surviving a shipwreck which she fears has claimed her twin brother’s life. It is a question which we might ask ourselves after our trial, not by water, but by fire.
Who are we? What have we lost? How will we continue? What is our aspiration for Australia? How may we honour and learn from the traditional custodians of the land? Bill Gammage called Australia "the biggest estate on earth" when it was expertly tended by the Aboriginal people. They have a complex, knowing and scientific land management strategy which uses fire precisely and observes the life cycle of native plants. Why is this not in practice now?
How may "Australians all" advance? Is our anthem fair game for parody; does it (or anything else) need changing?
Is it all too late? Has the future arrived while we are still busy unpacking the past?
In short: what country, friends is this? Poets and others are asked to explore the question. Insights, not rants, are sought. Share your perception, your truest Imagination for Australia.
These sessions are an opportunity for people from diverse disciplines and cultural backgrounds to engage in conversation and to enjoy poetry and music in the rooms of Rudolf Steiner House.
“Man is not a passive onlooker in relation to evolution, merely repeating in mental pictures cosmic events taking place without his participation; he is the active co-creator of the world-process, and cognition is the most perfect link in the organism of the universe.” - Rudolf Steiner
*Gugubarra is the Wiradjuri word from which 'Kookaburra' derives,