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To unlearn is not to recite or react but to exhume; it is to mine
with a tongue that pushes and probes our history’s darkest cavities.

~ 'Green Cape’ by Michelle Cahill, Red Room Poetry Fellow 2020

The Red Room Poetry Fellowship recognises the achievements and artistic goals of contemporary Australian poets. The Fellowship was established to foster poetic and professional development of an individual within the wider poetic community.

Valued at $10,000, this opportunity encourages poets to undertake an intensive period of creative development involving a range of commissions, residency, recordings and publication outcomes. Previous recipients of the Red Room Poetry Fellowship include Michelle Cahill (2020), Jeanine Leane (2019), the late Candy Royalle (2018) and Ali Cobby Eckermann (2017). 


Our Fellow 

We're thrilled to announce Ellen van Neerven as the Red Room Poetry Fellow for 2021.
Read the Fellow's Statement and Judging Notes »  


The Shortlist

For the fifth year running, the Fellowship Shortlist 2021 is a vivid reflection of the incredible poetic talent in Australia today.
Meet the Shortlisted Poets »  


The 2021 Fellow receives

  • $5000 poetic stipend “no strings”
  • $1000 commission to create a suite of poems inspired by an existing Red Room Poetry project
  • A two-week residency at Bundanon Trust with local workshops (Monday 12 July – Monday 25 July 2021)
  • Travel assistance
  • Opportunity to film or present a public address during the year-long Fellowship


The Judges 2021

This year, we warmly welcome Jessica AliceStuart Barnes and Jeanine Leane as judges of the Red Room Poetry Fellowship 2021.

Discover the Fellowship

While this Fellowship is currently only open to previously commissioned Red Room Poets, we're always looking for new voices for upcoming poetic projects. If you're interested in a Red Room Poetry commission, email with a copy of your CV, a suite of your best poems, as well as the kind of projects in which you are interested.

Partners and Supporters

The Red Room Poetry Fellowship is supported by generous individuals and our partners: