The Surfer by Judith Wright provides an enchanting view of the complex relationship between Nature and the Australian environment, and man and the inhabitants of the land. The Poem explores the Australian identity of a laid back people who enjoy being one with the land, and how surfing is a major component of the Australian identity. Judith wright does This by the way she words the relationship between man and land and their mutual relationship. Judith Wright uses metaphors to further this relationship between the surfer and the surf being mutual. In the line “Muscle of Arm thrust down long muscle of water” Judith provides us with an example of this even relationship as we know the surfer nor the surf overpowers the other, and that they’re both even in strength. Also the line “The Grey wolf snarls” gives the impression that the surf is a ‘Lone-wolf’ without the surfer, representing the intertwined mutual relationship between the surfer and the Surf. Judith also uses anthropomorphism to support her idea of the sea being alive and capable of competing in strength with the surfer. The line “sea crouches on sand, fawning and mouthing” reinforces the idea of the sea being a crazy animal for man to ‘wrestle’ and ‘Tussle’ with for dominance. It furthers the idea of the even and ongoing relationship between man and nature. Judith Wright's text allows you to grasp an understanding of the overwhelming force that is the Australian environment, and how we are constantly in a loop with it , and that the Australian land has always been a major component of our lives. The Mutual relationship between the ‘Wild’ Natural environment of Australia and Man is presented perfectly in Judith Wright's The surfer.
‘Khe Sanh’ By Cold Chisel is a story about a returning Vietnam veteran who is struggling with the task of fitting back into normal Suburban life. It’s a depressing story about a man with PTSD who drifts from place to place, and job to jobs to try and forget the horrors of Vietnam. The Song presents a view of how War changed the Australian society, splitting it between protesters and people who were forced to fight in Vietnam. The Composer in this texts wants to show people the mistreatment of the veterans returning from Vietnam, and how they were not welcomed home due to a lack of understanding of what these men went through, and the mental disabilities they suffered. The Composer shows how the shift from the WW2 idea of soldiers being heroes, to being murderers, had an effect on Australian society and how the ramifications are still being affected to this day. The text also uses poetic techniques to convey its strong message. The Composer uses Rhyme very carefully to reinforce the message. He uses Rhyme in the at the end of lines such as “Sanh, Man and understand”, “Lean, been and Dreams” as well as other uses. The writer is also careful not to implement the rhyme too much. H does this as to show how there is sometimes stability in the lives of these soldiers, but they are few and far between and are very random and hard to predict. This use of rhyme helps the listener explore the mind of the returning soldier. The composer also uses social criticism and give a deeper emotional meaning to the tale. In the lines “Saw an old friend but couldn’t kiss her… / And she was like so much more from that time on / Their lives were all so empty, till they found their chosen one” we can see this Criticism. The Writer is having a dig at the social standard of the time and how the women who were protesting and how their lives were meaningless until they found the perfect man. This poetic technique gives the text a darker tone to convey the emotional and chaotic society that was Australia during the 1970’s. The Composer in this text wants you to think deeply about the issues that plagued Australia post-Vietnam, and the songs lyrics and techniques force you to have sorrow for the men in Vietnam.
The unique and complex identity of Australian society is successfully portrayed by the contrasting texts. The texts convey two varying messages about The Australian society, exemplifying its complexity. While Khe Sanh Presents a darker more violent aspect of Australia, the Surfer gives Australia an identity of being laid back, whilst in a peaceful but hard relationship with its environment. The two look are almost completely different and give a broad view on both sides of the spectrum. By creating two different atmospheres the two texts show how the Australian identity is diverse and complex. The surfer uses metaphors and rhymes to convey how the Australian landscape is a place of beauty and how the people of Australia treat it as if it was another person. The surfer proposes the idea that although the Australian landscape is dangerous, but the Australian people have a mutual relationship with this dangerous terrain. This is juxtaposed by ‘Khe Sanh’ as the Australian identity is portrayed as one that has injured civil strife and unrest. Both of these texts have a major difference in meaning, as ‘The surfer’ constructs an image of a relaxed Australian people with a love for the land and a kindness to others, while ‘Khe Sanh’ illustrates an Australian identity that is divided over moral values. Both texts use a variety of techniques to be able to explore this complex idea, and these differences allow for the texts to be diverse and present two different type of narratives. As you can see by showing two very different spectrums of the Australian Identity, both these texts are able to show the complexity of it.
Khe Sanh, Cold Chiselhttps://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dTjvG4WJD_A