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The Two Faces of A Bag Poet
by Hopeton Gray
Mary Coombla is a young Aboriginal girl struggling to grow up in an inner city in Sydney, Australia. The Two Faces of Bag Poet sees Mary in her hometown, surrounded by her family, friends, and native culture, as well as charting her transition to school life after winning a scholarship to All Saints High School.
Through the poetry written by her father, Kami, which is kept in an old satchel, Mary finds her life’s true meaning and direction. The poems bring peace and reassurance to troubled times and eventually turn Mary and her father into performers of national renown.
This novel is not simply the story of one family, but it is a fascinating insight into the Aboriginal culture and the problems that exist for those who live in Australia’s most notorious inner city, “The Block,” which is being destroyed physically right now due to urban development.
About the Author
Hopeton Gray was born in June 1950 in Montego Bay, Jamaica. He attended Montego Bay Senior School until the age of fifteen. He then continued his education at Spencer Park School in London. He was a keen athlete and competed several times at London Schoolboys Championship, then for southern England.
After leaving school, he joined Sainsbury Construction as a trainee draftsman, gaining the Ordinary National Certificate in Engineering. He then joined Ove Arup and partners, where he gained the Higher National Certificate at Merton Technical College. He then worked around London as a freelance contract design engineer.
At the age of twenty-nine, he was recruited by the Papua New Guinea government, where he worked on a three-year contract as an engineer in buildings. He then moved to Australia, where he gained his Masters of Engineering Science degree at the University of Sydney.
In his toil and perseverance, he is still trying to reach the mainstream market through a bona fide publisher. With God’s blessing, this could be the first, praise God the Almighty one. Jamaica and those who love his works still wait to hear the storm from the man who has so much talent.
(2011, paperback, 152 pages)