Blog 9: Nation, Race, and Language

  • Start a poem with the lines “English is my mother tongue” and explore the meaning of this line in relation to your own experience of language in your life.


English is my mother tongue that shows me who I am

Not British, not Irish, not even American,

My tongue is unique and stands alone with a country

that is so rich of culture, expression and might

Yes this is the Australian tongue that is so very bright

As I gain my years of wisdom I do feel an empty space

with the thirst to learn another of different taste and grace

yes to learn a new tongue would be fabulous

with no abandoment of my own,

Just to enhance the diversity of life in all our different tone

Aussie slang is what the others call it with quite a smug voice

but these hypocrites don’t realise we have made this choice

See even ‘proper’ English holds no originality of its own

From Greek and Latin and Arabic is where it had been made

And so I wonder why posh society has given our dialect such shade

So I will continue to eat a bicky and yell to mate “g’day”

To live my Australian life, the good ol’ aussie way

Each country’s English should be respected by all and so

years from now I hope that language holds no negative thought

Instead, I hope the greatness in the diversity in every language is taught

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5 Responses to Blog 9: Nation, Race, and Language

  1. vbravosite says:

    Hey Sarah, this was an interesting poem to read. What makes it interesting to me is the pointing out of how idiotic it is for people to deem a language “superior” to another. As you clearly put out in the line, “See even ‘proper’ English holds no originality of its own/From Greek and Latin and Arabic is where it had been made,” languages even borrow from other languages.

    However, something that somewhat makes me uneasy is the definition of what an “Australian” is. The tone is patriotic, which is fine, but while some people, like myself, define an Australian as someone who’s basically born and raised in Australia, others will define a “true” Australian as the Indigenous people and will dismiss phrases such as “good ol’ Aussie way” and even the iconic phrase “g’day” since when someone talks about “Australian people”, the Aborigines seldom come to mind but rather “bogan” culture. Especially adding to the prospect of native tongues and diminishing languages, the poem starts to take a grave and even grim atmosphere, though I am unsure if that was your intention.

    Regardless, I still find this an interesting read and an intriguing poem to read. Well done.


  2. ngaireale says:

    Hi Sarah,

    This poem is beautifully written. Wow! Is English your mother tongue? So is mine! In fact, I can also speak French and Samoan. This poem really sings and shows a deep appreciation for the plight of the English language in contrast to other languages. One major thing that was brought to my attention whilst reading your poem is the way individuals look at one another’s language and considering theirs to be better. Also, the map of Australia that you included really did provide perfect closure for your poem.

    There is, however, one spelling error of ‘abandoment’ which is ‘abandonment’.

    Other than that, well done.I enjoyed reading your poem and I look forward to reading your future blogs!


  3. This blog is amazing. Grammar and Punctuation was perfect. Your attention to detail was fantastic I really enjoyed reading your blog Good Job and Keep it up 🙂


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  5. This is a wonderful poem Sarah that expresses so well your own experience. I am going to share this poem on FaceBook! Yoo Hoo!
    Great work!

    Liked by 1 person

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