Rainbow Gold

One Hundred Mile Swamp | Undara Volcanic National Park | Queensland | Australia

The Rainbow Gold | Scott Bennett | 2010 | Acrylic on canvas | 24″ x 30″ | Private collection

One Hundred Mile Swamp (100 miles west of Cardwell), has flooded the last three years. It had not filled for 17 Years prior to 2008.

I found the tree while paddling the length of the swamp on my stand up paddle board (SUP). A Black Duck, nesting in the hollow, flew off loudly, leaving both of us startled by the encounter. The Gum was an amazing sight in the afternoon light, bent, burnt, broken and half drowned, yet blooming.

The title comes from the following lines in the poem My Country by Dorothea Mackellar:

“Core of my heart, my country!
Land of the Rainbow Gold,
For flood and fire and famine,
She pays us back threefold
Over the thirsty paddocks,
Watch, after many days,
The filmy veil of greenness
That thickens as we gaze.”

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