Nettie Palmer was born Janet Gertrude Higgins in Bendigo, Victoria and was schooled at the Prebyterian Ladies' College. After taking a BA and diploma in education from the University of Melbourne, she travelled to England and continued her studies in French and German. She returned to Melbourne and completed an MA in 1912. In 1914 she returned to England and married Vance Palmer, beginning one of Australia's most important literary partnerships. more »
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IN the sorrow and the terror of the nations,
In a world shaken through by lamentations,
Shall I dare know happiness
That I stitch a baby’s dress?
So: for I shall be a mother with the mothers,
I shall know the mother’s anguish like the others,
Present joy must surely start
For the life beneath my heart.
Gods and men, ye know a woman’s glad unreason,
How she cannot bend and weep but in her season,
Let my hours with rapture glow
As the seams and stitches grow.
And I cannot hear the word...