In his poem, "Australia," A. D. Hope suggests that Australia is uncivilized and culturally barren.
In the first stanza, Hope describes the landscape of Australia as "drab green and desolate grey," and he compares this appearance to the traditional khaki "field uniform" that soldiers wear. In the final two lines of the first stanza, Hope describes Australia metaphorically as a "Sphinx demolished." In Greek mythology, the sphinx is a pitiless and cruel creature that eats those who cannot correctly solve its riddles. Hope is perhaps describing Australia as a sphinx to suggest that Australia is a cruel and pitiless land.
In the second stanza, Hope says that Australia is, if not literally, then metaphorically an old country. It is metaphorically old in that it is weak and lifeless. Hope compares Australia to a woman who is "beyond her change of life." The implication is that Australia is like a postmenopausal woman. A postmenopausal woman can no longer carry a pregnancy and thus can no longer...
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