I love where there is a convergence between man-made structures and the desolate wild environment. So I could think of nothing better to write about than a Fence! . . .Australia has the longest man made structure in the world. It’s a fence, to keep Dingoes out of pasture country. In the 1940s, two separate Dingo fences were finally repaired, then joined together, forming a rabbit and Dingo proof fence stretching some 8614 kilometres long, it was by far the longest man-made structure on the planet; at least until the late 1970s. Over the following few years, prior to 1980, it was drastically reduced in length. It was unfortunate and inevitable, due to rabbit and Roo damage and pastoral restructuring, that the world’s longest man-made structure may be reduced to about 5614 kilometres. Of which, nearly 5000 km is shared between South Australia and Queensland; the remainder is in New South Wales. There is an access gate located about every 19km; But who is counting! Now let us compare this to the Great Wall of China, built over many centuries, with thousands of Chinese slaves and labourers perishing during its construction. It is currently the second longest man made structure in the world. Starting from Shanhaiguan or ‘Shanhai Pass’ in the east of China, and meandering approximately 6,400 km, to Lop Nur near the salt lakes of the west. This makes our Dingo fence about 2,200 km longer than the Great Wall of China; but it only remained this way until about 1980. This piece of trivia, give or take a few kilometres is something we should all be very proud.
Interestingly, from my studies and discussion with old pioneers from our district, I have found a link between the Great Wall of China and our equally impressive Dingo fence. No its not that the fence is made in China like most products seem to be these days, but the Australian Dingo is believed to be a descendant of the wild dogs from Southern China nearly 6000 years ago. The interpretation of Australian Aboriginal paintings from granite caves in protected cave sites near Darwin, found that about 6000 years ago during an era of Chinese world domination and expansion, the Chinese explored countries from Taiwan to the Philippines to Indonesia, and ultimately or indirectly to the Australian shores. Many of these Chinese explorers were agricultural families with their trusted Dingo descendant, the Wild Dog. They are known as the seafaring Austronesian-Aborigines. A little, like a Chinese Stone-age Christopher Columbus really. All this happened thousands of years before European settlement. A bit ironic that an iconic Australian landmark stretching further than China’s longest structure was designed to keep a Chinese descendant out. . . The Dog, that is! Today our country is again under threat from China, not through war or vermin but through world domination of manufactured goods . . . I believe one day we can work together with our natural resources and China’s lust to lead the next industrial revolution. Our countries should flourish for decades to come.
By combining Poetry into a photograph you get POETPICS or PHOTOPOETRY.
A phrase of philosophy integrated into a photograph = PHILOETRY
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Search for my auto signature © James Irvine (hidden within Poetry Photographs)
See how this and other poems play a part in the Story 'Finding Harvey’, crafting another dimension of creative writing = 3D-Poetry.