James Phillip McAuley

(12 October 1917 – 15 October 1976 / Lakemba, New South Wales)

James Phillip McAuley
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James Phillip McAuley was an Australian academic, poet, journalist, literary critic and a prominent convert to Roman Catholicism.

Life and career

McAuley was born in Lakemba, a suburb of Sydney. He was educated at Fort Street High School and then attended Sydney University where he majored in English, Latin and philosophy. In 1937 he edited Hermes, the annual literary journal of the University of Sydney Union, in which many of his early poems were published until 1941.

He began his life as an Anglican and was sometime organist and choirmaster at Holy Trinity Church, Dulwich Hill in Sydney. McAuley lost his Christian faith as a younger man.

In 1943 ... more »

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Best Poem of James Phillip McAuley

Because


My father and my mother never quarrelled.
They were united in a kind of love
As daily as the Sydney Morning Herald,
Rather than like the eagle or the dove.

I never saw them casually touch,
Or show a moment’s joy in one another.
Why should this matter to me now so much?
I think it bore more hardly on my mother,

Who had more generous feelings to express.
My father had dammed up his Irish blood
Against all drinking praying fecklessness,
And stiffened into stone and creaking wood.

His lips would make a switching sound, as though
Spontaneous...

Read the full of Because

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