From the Gulf to God Knows Where
Few stories have been told, or will be told, with such vivid immediacy and disarming naturalness as Marion Houldsworth presents them here.
Bill Gammage, ANU
Charlie and Pauline Rayment wouldn’t live anywhere but the Outback. Charlie brought Pauline as a bride to ‘Kurran’, in the ranges of the Diamantina catchment. Pauline faced the wilderness while Charlie carved a property from the harsh environment.
Their story typifies this new collection by Marion Houldsworth. Readers share the Outback experience at one remove; wake face-to-face with a rock-python, are sucked down in a whirlpool, trapped inside a water-tank, help a neighbour bury a dead child. They swim cattle across the flooded Burdekin, and, like Clancy of old, tail ‘twelve-fifty fats’ down the Cooper. Brumby hunts, droughts, floods and fires,even a trip by Cobb & Co. Told with compassion and humour this more than a valuable addition to the social history of the Outback. These are Australia’s stories at their liveliest and best.