Keywords: Brian Matthews

  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    The satisfactions of homeliness

    • Brian Matthews
    • 06 October 2021
    2 Comments

    I’m reminded of George Orwell in smashed-up thoroughly locked-down, wartime London welcoming the first signs of spring amidst the ruins and winter’s lingering cold but wondering whether he should. ‘Is it wicked,’ he asks, ‘to take a pleasure in spring and other seasonal changes? To put it more precisely, is it politically reprehensible?’ 

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    Tying off the threads of doubt

    • Brian Matthews
    • 05 August 2021
    4 Comments

    In times of unexpected or inexplicable crisis, humans all over the globe regardless of race, religion, lineage or historical evidence, will often turn to myth, the occult, each other, to their until then untested and unimpressive leaders, or to a hoped-for apparent miracle to explain what seemed otherwise beyond explanation.

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  • ENVIRONMENT

    The true quiet Australians

    • Brian Matthews
    • 03 June 2021
    6 Comments

    Red gum, this ‘smooth-barked large tree that gives watercourses all over Australia their Australian feel’, seemed intent on bobbing up in my life one way or another, sometimes as a result of sheer luck or coincidence.

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    Mates, spies and silence

    • Brian Matthews
    • 30 March 2021
    4 Comments

    The military police were waiting for us in Gallipoli and they were not happy. Approaching in darkness, when we rolled to a stop we were immediately surrounded by uniformed figures. A group of men playing cards outside a café watched this drama unfold and one shouted something which made them all laugh. The military police, however, did not laugh.

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    Crossing borders in a Kombi van

    • Brian Matthews
    • 16 February 2021
    6 Comments

    The border-obsessed times we live in reminded me of some really tough borders I encountered in years past. It is October 1961, the place: rural Turkey. Where you would have expected to roll on down the deserted dusty road, there is a boom gate and four sentries. This can’t be a border, however.

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    Tis the times' plague

    • Brian Matthews
    • 24 November 2020
    5 Comments

    In measures now sadly familiar in 2020, theatres were closed once the number of weekly deaths exceeded 30, later 40, but because actors and the theatre world itself were so economically vulnerable, actors, understandably intent on earning a living, soon legally or otherwise cut themselves some slack by taking liberties with the rules governing performances and quarantine — again, a phenomenon that is now, against all previous odds, familiar to people of 2020.

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    The romance of the song

    • Brian Matthews
    • 06 October 2020
    10 Comments

    He came in, sat down, and we talked about Henry Lawson. He was well read in the field, having encountered Lawson not only in a small way at school but especially at home where his mother had given him an anthology of Australian stories and he’d come across ‘The Drover’s Wife’. We hit it off: he was pleasant, engaging and witty and we resolved to continue our talk in the near future.

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    Our neighbour Sam

    • Brian Matthews
    • 04 August 2020
    19 Comments

    Our neighbor Sam is in his mid-seventies. He takes things quietly, enjoys a chat where our two gardens converge at a corner of the lambing paddock that unfolds beyond our shared wire fence and, regularly in summer, Sam is partial to a few cooling drinks.

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    Finding fragments of a father

    • Brian Matthews
    • 02 July 2020
    3 Comments

    Daddy Cool is a thoroughly absorbing biography, witty, astonishing, often intensely moving, effortlessly in charge of a crowded and potentially confusing canvas (readers of a certain age will recognise names like Jack Davey, Roy Rene, Dick Bentley, Willie Fennell).

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    Illness and the indescribable

    • Brian Matthews
    • 03 April 2020
    3 Comments

    Illness, so apparently explicit and ever more obvious as it progresses, in fact defies definition: submitting apparently to scientific and medical description, it escapes into a quality of pain, exquisite loss or appalled helplessness that is often most clearly captured at the heart of great works of art.

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  • ENVIRONMENT

    Writing in the apocalypse

    • Brian Matthews
    • 06 February 2020
    3 Comments

    I’d never heard of McKenzie Funk until I came across his marvellous review essay, 'Smoked Out'. I eagerly read on beyond the genial opening paragraphs and almost immediately, I found myself on familiar, if deadly, ground.

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  • MEDIA

    Editors' Picks: Best of the Decade

    • The Editors
    • 20 December 2019
    6 Comments

    Our team of editors have dug through the past ten years' worth of Eureka Street articles to nominate their favourite pieces published between the start of 2010 and today. Check out our list and then jump into the comments to tell us what are your picks of the decade and why.

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