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Bruce Dawe

            Essay topic: In "Sometimes Gladness" Dawe is both amused and frustrated by the society and individuals around him discuss. (800-850 words).
             Bruce Dawe once said "I write out of a concern for things that are going on around me." This is evident throughout his writings in "Sometimes Gladness Dawe combine humour and seriousness regarding the contemporary Australian society around him. The particular values held by Australian individuals really bother Dawe "a pure unadulterated fringe of sky, littered with stars no one has got around to fixing up yet." Dawe portrays Australian society as a consumer society who is always demanding more like the stars not being bright enough. Dawe consistently focuses on the smaller picture of life to show to the reader his frustration and amusement of the cycle of life.
             Dawe expresses his amusement in "Life-cycle" in a satirical manner suggesting football with its rituals such as, "hot pies and potato-crisps they will eat" and heroes like "Chicken Smallhorn." has replaced religion as a central focus for many Australians. Dawe through the "life-cycle" as the title suggests of a footy fan explores the religious experiences lived by the individual. The child is born into a football-dominated world and has confirmed to this lifestyle before even setting foot into this world. "They are wrapped in the club-colours, laid in beribboned cots, having already begun a lifetime's barracking." The sight of the child's first football match is seen "hoisted shoulder-high" rising from the "innocent monsters" they have been living as and elevates to a sight of heaven, "the daylight's roaring empyrean." This piece is not biting satire but a gentle laugh at the expense of football fans. Dawe likens them to religious devotes. "Looking to heaven," seeking salvation," "the voice of God booms from the stands." The football fan becomes part of Australian mythology.
             "Enter without so much as knocking" in some ways is a contrasting piece to "Life-cycle.

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