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Poem - Driving Through Sawmill Town

            The connection between the landscape and our sense of place can be portrayed positively and negatively. Alice Werner's Extract from Bannerman of the dandennong is a perfect example of the persona's sense of place being positively and negatively portrayed. On the other hand, Les Murray's Driving through sawmill towns depicts a more one sided sombre and negative perspective on people's sense of place. Both poems benefit from the sudden change of tones providing the backbone for their sense of belonging and place. Our sense of place can be heavily influenced by our surroundings, landscape and connections.
             Murray commences his poem with a plain yet effective sensory imagery of the "high cool country", which informs the reader of an isolated place. He then proceeds to describe their connection with simple visual imagery "tilting road, into a distant valley" The readers feel as if they've been led into an isolated and remote countryside. The persona creates a sense of connection with nature through a personification " your windscreen parts the forest, swaying and glancing" giving the landscape of the forest a sense of life, as a result gives a sense of identity to the place. Thus a powerful scene is created and prepared for the readers to embark on their adventure through the town.
             Nonetheless, the lively atmosphere is not to last as the use of ellipsis "jammed midday brilliance crouches in clearings" allows the readers to take time and soak in the vibrant visual imagery of the sunlight shining through the trees. However it also becomes the turning point in the poem as the tone begins to change. Having just taken in the beauty and richness of the trees, the readers are suddenly introduced to the sawmill towns "then you come across them, the sawmill towns" suggesting to the readers a sense of grief, resulting in the lost in their connection with their sense of place.

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