Sharing his birthday with Edgar Allan Poe is Australian poet Reginald Charles (Rex) Ingamells. Originally he followed the trail of poets like Banjo Patterson and wrote the songs of the bush as experienced by the whites. In the 1930’s he founded the Jindyworobak movement. Although exclusively white artists, they made the first forays into recognition of indigenous Australian art and culture.
The absence of native Australian Aboriginal artists from the group has undermined its validity. Some might say the current status of Aboriginal art owes much to the groundwork done by the Jindy club. Who knows?
Shifting Camp: by Rex Ingamells
Glint of gumtrees in the dawn,
so million coloured: bush wind-borne
magpie-music, rising, falling;
and voices of the stockmen calling.
Bellowing of cattle: stamping,
impatient of the place of camping:
bark of dogs, and the crack-crack-crack
of stockwhips as we take the track.
Neighing of night-rested mounts…
This is a day that really counts:
a day to ride with a hundred head,
and a roll of canvas – that’s my bed.