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John Wolseley nominated this incantational song-poem of the Simpson Desert, by Mike McLean Irinjili, as his ‘necessary’ poem for last year’s Melbourne Writers Festival event. It is a privilege to hear John recount how amid his many wanderings across Australian landscape he came to hear and know this poem. He shares a world and ancient knowledge rarely available to us in cities and other cultures, and one that may soon no longer be sung.

From Robert MW Dixon's The Honey-Ant Men's Love Song and Other Aboriginal Song Poems, courtesy UQP.

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