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John Tranter: Notes to poems

book cover

[»] Interim notes for a proposed Collected Poems Volume 1, 1960-2000 (pub 2011). This file is about 30 printed pages long. A Collected Poems Volume 2 is planned for 2020.

Photo: John Tranter, London, 2008

Starlight cover

[»] Detailed notes to all the poems in Starlight: 150 Poems, 2010. About 35 printed pages.

Gig Ryan, Australian Book Review, October 2010 : “The multi-voiced poems illustrate that all affectations and effects are also what makes us human, just as all poetry is partly an accumulation of past poems. […] His richly colourful style and a tone that throttles sentimentality are constant. As with all great poets, the energy of Tranter’s work is born from this conflict of destruction and creation…”

Urban Myths, cover

[»] Notes to the poems in the book Urban Myths: 210 Poems: New and Selected University of Queensland Press, 2006. 322 pages. ISBN-0-7022-3557-1, paperback. These note are about 90 printed pages long.

This generous collection of 210 poems takes in the whole of John Tranter’s dazzling career including fifty new and uncollected poems as virtuosic as anything that precedes them. These final pages demonstrate the continuously innovative and international character of Tranter’s poetry, as well as its finely tuned responsiveness to the particularities of Australian idiom and experience. In Tranter’s hands, poetry, and language itself, is never straightforward but always a matter of delight and critical inquiry. Tranter’s devastating wit has evolved over time, but the daring and implicit humour of the enterprise has been constant. Combining tremendous technical fluency with a restless, experimental drive, Tranter delves into ‘popular mysteries’ and iconic characters, the irony of the everyday and ‘the vernacular of the shopping channel’. Tranter’s seemingly effortless command of the resources of form, speech, character and story, energizes his poetry and stimulates his readers, counterbalancing the melancholy of ‘grief, in small allotments’ with the ‘gift factory’ of poetic invention.’ [From the New South Wales Kenneth Slessor Prize for poetry judges’ report: judges: Martin Harrison [chair], Kate Lilley, Kathleen Stewart.]

Cover image: The Floor of Heaven

[»] The Floor of Heaven was first published in 1992. Now in its third edition, it has been set from time to time as an optional prescribed text for the New South Wales (Australia) Higher School Certificate English Extension 1 course. The ’gender’ course module requires students to investigate, explore and evaluate the ways in which language shapes and reflects culture and values as they relate to gender. Here are some notes to that book. These notes are about 3 printed pages long.

See this site (below) to purchase the book:

Trio, cover

[»] Notes to the poems in the book Trio. Salt Publishing (UK), September 2003. 162 pages. ISBN 1 876857 71 4 paperback. An omnibus collection of all the poems in three books published previously in Australia but long out of print:
    Red Movie (1972)
    Crying in Early Infancy — 100 Sonnets (1977)
    Dazed in the Ladies Lounge (1979).

These notes are about 9 printed pages long.

The publisher, Salt Publications in Cambridge UK, has an Internet site.

E N D        The Internet address of this page is