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Cinderella Mousie

In 1968 Zara Holt wrote a children’s story entitled Cinderella Mousie, with vivid word sketches bringing the scenes to life. The main character wears ‘blue jeans and a turtle-neck skivvy with blue and green stripes, and her thick brown shoes and long white socks’ and her lunch is ‘a big fat chop and some potatoes and butter, and some spinach, and then she had some chocolate milk and some fruit salad and cream’.

The story includes the wry observations characteristic of the author. Children are told the golden rule of enjoying food: eating ‘one only, instead of one more, which is quite different’. A tale of a clever kangaroo is reinforced with ‘the man worked for the CSIRO and told her it was really true.’ Among the emus, kangaroos, platypus, and black swans, there is a sulphur-crested cockatoo calling ‘Have a cup of tea’, and a galah that responds ‘Whacko!’.

Zara Holt wrote this story during March and April 1968, while in the first months of mourning the death of her husband, Harold Holt.

Zara Holt and young child during Holt’s tour of Asia, 1967.

Zara Holt and young child during Holt’s tour of Asia, 1967.

NAA: A1200, L63367

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Did you know ...

At the three-yearly general elections voters elect all 150 members of the House of Representatives. The four Territory Senators also have three-year terms, but the 72 Senators representing the States have six-year terms. The exceptions are by-elections for casual vacancies, or in a double dissolution of Parliament, when all 76 Senate seats are declared vacant as well as the House of Representatives seats.

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