This work comprises three major sections: 'Towards the Source', 1894-1897; 'The Forest of the Night', 1898-1902; 'The Wanderer', 1902, and two concluding segments, 'Pauca Mea' and 'Epilogues' (Oxford Companion to Australian Literature ).
Brennan's own descriptionof the work was ' a sublimation of a whole imaginitive life and experience into a subtly ordered series of poems, where each piece has, of course, its individual value, and yet cannot be interpreted save in its relation to the whole' (The Prose of Chritopher Brennan, ed. A. R. Chisolm.)
Explores the passage of Australian poetry from 1788 to the early 1970s, discussing why the anthology focuses on 'articulate, personal poetry', and is weighted toward the fruitful period after 1930. Highlights important themes and concerns of Australian poetry - the quest for an Antipodean Eden, the pursuit of Romantic idealism within a strongly secular culture, and the need to define an Australian vision and identity against English culture - and assesses the individual contributions of major poets.