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My Country (Core of my Heart) by Dorothea Mackellar

My Country (Core of my Heart) by Dorothea Mackellar

Famous Australian poet Dorothea Mackellar was born on this day, 1st July 1885.

Her best-known poem is My Country, written at age 19 while homesick in England, and first published in the London Spectator in 1908 under the title Core of My Heart: the second stanza of this poem is among the best known verses in Australia. Four volumes of her collected verse were published: The Closed Door (published in 1911, contained the first appearance of My Country); The Witch Maid, and Other Verses (1914); Dreamharbour (1923); and Fancy Dress (1926).

For her contributions to Australian literature, Mackellar was made an Officer of the Order of the British Empire in 1968, but she died 2 weeks later.

The State Library of New South Wales holds the Mackellar family papers, including a notebook with drafts of verses including Core of My Heart (pictured above)