Treasure Island

Vance Palmer

(1885 - 1959 / Australia)

Quotations

  • ''Beyond the horizon, or even the knowledge, of the cities along the coast, a great, creative impulse is at work—the only thing, after all, that gives this continent meaning and a guarantee of the future. Every Australian ought to climb up here, once in a way, and glimpse the various, manifold life of which he is a part.''
    Vance Palmer (1885-1959), Australian author, poet. repr. In Intimate Portraits, ed. H.P. Heseltine (1969). "The Divide," (1925).
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  • ''It is the business of thought to define things, to find the boundaries; thought, indeed, is a ceaseless process of definition. It is the business of Art to give things shape. Anyone who takes no delight in the firm outline of an object, or in its essential character, has no artistic sense.... He cannot even be nourished by Art. Like Ephraim, he feeds upon the East wind, which has no boundaries.''
    Vance Palmer (1885-1959), Australian author, poet. repr. In Intimate Portraits, ed. H.P. Heseltine (1969). "On Boundaries," (1921).
  • ''The voice of America has no undertones or overtones in it. It repeats its optimistic catchwords in a tireless monologue that has the slightly metallic sound of a gramophone.''
    Vance Palmer (1885-1959), Australian author and poet. repr. In Intimate Portraits, ed. H. P. Heseltine (1969). "Literary America," (1923).
  • ''The truth is that literature, particularly fiction, is not the pure medium we sometimes assume it to be. Response to it is affected by things other than its own intrinsic quality; by a curiosity or lack of it about the people it deals with, their outlook, their way of life.''
    Vance Palmer (1885-1959), Australian author, poet. repr. In Intimate Portraits, ed. H.P. Heseltine (1969). "Fragment of Autobiography," (1958).

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The Pathfinders

Night, and a bitter sky, and strange birds crying,
The wan trees whisper and the winds make moan,
Here where in ultimate peace their bones are lying
In gaunt waste places that they made their own,
Beyond the ploughed lands where the corn is sown.

Death, and untrodden ways, and night before them,
From sheltering homes and friendly hearths they came;
Far from the mouldering dust of those that bore them

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