Highlights from the Archives: 2023 Fellowship Shortlist

Red Room Poetry news

Each year, the Red Room Poetry Fellowship is awarded to a previously-commissioned poet to foster and enhance their poetic and professional development. Established to recognise and develop the achievements of contemporary Australian poets, each poet on the shortlist will be offered a commission opportunity to be published as a summer series across Red Room's digital channels.

Congratulations to the 10 poets shortlisted for our 2023 Fellowship! The 2023 Fellow will be announced on Thursday 6 April.

"The selected poets detailed deeply considered, thought out and well-articulated projects, sometimes having a very specific and laser-like focus. The projects span space and time and showcase innovation, flair, and ambition. As a group, the poets demonstrate an exciting Australian poetry landscape, one that is not afraid to take risks and engage with important subject matter."

Previously commissioned poems by the Fellowship Shortlist

Check out a selection of poems by the shortlisted poets below, and click through to their artist pages to read more of their commissioned work.

This is the last love song, I swear
watching your slow demise
on someone else’s television.

Wanting to read this archive of weather,
we clamber across lichen mosaicked rocks,
squelch along soggy tracks
through arched moodjar groves,
scanning the surface for a sign;
leaf, bud, bark, clues to what lies substrate.

a name for what speaks     this day to
as creek replies 

There are about 1.5 billion cubic kilometres of poems
on the planet. That’s about 1.5 billion trillion litres
or 800 trillion Olympic swimming pools.

If it’s reported that islands have gone
missing, remember how seas love us
and trail in our blood.

Artificial light pools on their cheekbones and across their breasts.
They are beautiful and hollow as the chamber.
They are held inside their modelled forms—

just echoes in the amber hour.
Their voices are honey and forgetting.

We write about our existence pre-invasion / and that has made us visible
We write about our existence during invasion / and that keeps us visible


Here, in this half-sleep dulcet rhythm, lifted,
your mind drifts along currents patterned by gentle
moth wing flutters. Everything abuzz, you float,
dance, fathom amongst sweet-lipped night flowers.

I walk at the trees as if I have knowledge
secrets of their past, I don't, but confidence
is a clever accessory. This winter walk
these minuets stall the loud, awaken the soft

This book is a plane
I am flying
to you, I seem far
from touching down
the weather is fine!