The touring show on Australia's national poet has been recorded in studio now and with the added special effects of the production crew is a very entertaining listen.
Adam Lindsay Gordon (1833-70), Australia's acclaimed national poet was many things in his time. A mounted trooper, champion jockey, horse breaker and Member of Parliament. He was the first to capture Australia and her people in the words of poetry, paving the way for Banjo Paterson, Henry Lawson and William Ogilvie to create poetry that was uniquely Australian. In his travels, he lived in South Australia, Victoria and Western Australia - no mean feat at a time when travel was on horseback or by sailing ship, and his words spread by word of mouth across the nation.
TRIBUTES TO ADAM LINDSAY GORDON
Gordon's English military instructor:
"...idle and reckless, but I never heard of him doing a dishonourable action".
"Adam Lindsay Gordon has left Australia a sterling, manly ideal for its manhood and its poetry, and it could not have had a more robust master".
—John Masefield, Poet Laureate
"Gordon was a fine poet and a fine sportsman, and it is curious that in a sporting nation like ours his great merits have not been more generally recognised".
—Arthur Conan Doyle, creator of 'Sherlock Holmes'
"Gordon knew both pleasures and trials. He not only experienced them, but was inspired by them, and set them down in matchless poetry, and left to Australia a great literary legacy. Gordon's poems rang with sincerity".
—Sir Stanley Argyle, Premier of Victoria
"Gordon is one of the finest poetic singers the English race has ever known".
—Oscar Wilde, Irish playwright, novelist, poet and author
"...he was the poet of the horse. No other poet ever understood horses so well. He made the live in his poems. The rhythm in his poems was the rhythm of riding. But they contained also such lofty philosophy of manhood as only such a hero could have penned".
—Douglas Sladen, biographer
Marcus Clarke, author of For the Term of his Natural Life:
"The poems of Gordon have an interest beyond the mere personal one which his friends attach to his name. Written as they were, at odd times and leisure moments of a stirring and adventurous life, it is not to be wondered if they are unequal or unfinished. The astonishment of those who knew the man, and can gauge the capacity of this city to foster poetic instinct, is, that such work was ever produced here at all".
H M Green, reviewing Gordon's poetry:
"We read Gordon, not for his fine phrases, but for the directness of some cry, and above all for the breadth and effectiveness of any utterance taken as a whole. And we read him because even if we ourselves are not hunters, sportsmen, soldiers, adventurers he uncovers some underlying stratum of such men in us, opening up to us the road of adventure and blowing over it the wind of romance".
John Riddoch, confidant-in-chief:
"...a moody unsociable man when his poetic fit was on -- a great smoker. Often on arriving at the house he would go away into the bush and fend for himself rather than face company inside".
John Riddoch (presumably):
This comes from 1869 when Gordon accepted an invitation to visit his friends the Riddochs, at Yallum:
"On his previous visit he had taken a whimsical fancy to a gnarled old gum tree that stood in a sunny paddock a few hundred yards from the house. After breakfast he used to climb it, and sit in a natural armchair upon a crooked limb. There he would fill and smoke successive bowls of his clay pipe, and those who were curious might see him from time to time jot down lines in pencil on paper spread upon the branch, or sometimes on his hat. He never had any thought upon the time, and when meals came round he generally had to be specially summoned, whereupon he would slide down the trunk and apologize for causing delay".
Thankyou for your time and attention, Geoff