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Sunday 04 September, 2016
Flinders University City Gallery
Statel Library of South Australia
North Terrace, Adelaide
This collection of war poetry focuses on Australians who enlisted when their country called. Mainly based on stories about the author, Robert Jarrad’s nineteen relatives who enlisted – including his Father and Grandfathers – Slouch Hat Soldiers – Generations at War recreates the harsh realities of war with compassion, speaking for those who cannot.
About the author
Bob Jarrad is a Manufacturing Engineer. A Defence Science and Technology Organisation (DSTO), apprentice fitter and turner, he worked at Adelaide University as a Technical Officer in the Departments of Mechanical and Chemical Engineering for ten years. Later, he ran his own engineering business that operated for thirty-five years.
Bob has been a member of the Citizen Military Forces – and for several years, was a Gunner in the13th Field Royal Australian Artillery, 48th Battery, based at Keswick, SA.
Actively engaged with motorcycle dirt-bike racing for twenty years, Bob rode solo and also swung as a sidecar passenger in endurance events. Nowadays, Bob enjoys a tinker in his workshop – and immersing himself in his writing. He also has a passion for painting with acrylics and oils; and is an accomplished didgeridoo player, having written, recorded and produced a CD of songs and music titled Echos Downunder.
Bob began writing seriously several years ago when, bed-ridden for three months, he could do little else before undergoing major back surgery. Now a prolific writer of poetry, Bob is an active member of the South Australian Writers’ Centre Inc. and North Eastern Writers’ Inc. Bob’s poems have been published in newspapers and magazines and won several awards, including First Prize in the Tea Tree Gully Poetry Festival, 2013 and in the Open Your Mind Mental Health Coalition Poetry Competition, 2012. Slouch Hat Soldiers – Generations at War is Bob Jarrad’s first collection of poetry.
About the book
This collection of stories focuses on Australians who enlisted when their country called. Slouch Hat Soldiers – Generations at War is not a history book. Indeed, it is mainly based on stories about the author’s nineteen relatives who enlisted, but it pertains to all Australians. Robert Jarrad recreates the harsh realities of war with compassion, as he speaks for those who cannot.
Slouch Hat Soldiers – Generations at War, contains a series of poetic snapshots, distilled from the powerful stories and images that some people experienced during World Wars One and Two, and the Vietnam War. Along with the bloodshed and horror are mateship, humour, patriotism and love of the homeland. There are many acts in the theatre of war, which only those who serve in the forces witness, however, through storytelling, they are remembered – and here they have been turned into poignant poetry. The author hopes this book may help a new generation of Australians to understand what it was like to go to war.
Slouch Hat Soldiers – Generations at War is illustrated by internationally acclaimed military artist Barry Spicer. Barry was honoured with the title of official artist to ‘Australian Army Aviation’ in 2008 and has recently been named as the Regimental Artist for the Army’s 1st Armoured Regiment.
This book will resonate with all Australians. Slouch Hat Soldiers – Generations at War is a testimony to the mateship, courage, humour, ingenuity, endurance and individualism of Australians at war – and in general.
Click here for more information about Slouch Hat Soldiers.