‘Moments of Synchronicity’

with Gary Shearston

© Jim Low

It was the last day of 2008. I was enjoying a leisurely stroll around the historic township of Windsor, one of ‘Macquarie’s Five Towns’, in the New South Wales Hawkesbury region.  While stopping to explore a second-hand shop which reclaimed the ample space of a lost congregation in their old church, I came across a cardboard box full of photographs.

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No Place For John Place

It would be interesting to know how many convicts transported to Australia had any geographic knowledge of where they had been sent. Perhaps most would have had limited or no idea at all, except that the long sea voyage made it apparent that they were far from their homeland.

Written and sung by Jim Low. Read the lyrics.

The belief that some convicts accepted about China being within reasonable reach of the penal settlement was therefore not as delusional as it may have seemed. The convicts travelled a large part of the journey to Australia below deck. This would surely have reduced their sense of distance and direction. Maps of the ‘great south land’ were rudimentary and in some cases based on conjecture.

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Tilly Aston

I first came across the name Tilly Aston in an exhibition on Vision Impairment at the Victorian Museum in 2012. I later learnt more about this remarkable and inspiring woman by reading her Memoirs, as well as some of her poetry from her published collections.

a young Tilly Aston
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