Shortlist: 2023 Helen Anne Bell Poetry Bequest Award

Thank you to judges Maxine Beneba Clarke, Cassandra Atherton, and Jeanine Leane for shortlisting me in the 2023 Helen Anne Bell bequest. Congratulations to the two other shortlisted poets: Angela Gardner and Holly Friedlander Liddicoat and to the winner Svetlana Sterlin.

I was very grateful and honoured to have been shortlisted for my unpublished collection of poems: All Rage Blaze Light. I have been so lucky and blessed with good fortune to have such beautiful family and friends whose love and support and encouragement have got me through very difficult times. I have been equally lucky with my precious writing mentors.

I have many special people who I consider to be lights and guides in my life, and for this manuscript, there is one writing mentor I would especially like to thank for showing me how to add fire to my poetry and blaze with light. That person is my brilliant writing mentor, Felicity Plunkett, to whom this collection is dedicated to. Felicity gave generous, gentle, kind, and intuitive feedback on my poems, which helped me to shape what it is today. She also took time to have Zoom sessions with me from Sydney to Brisbane and her presence and encouragement radiated through that screen and held me together. Her light gave me courage, and hope. Please make sure you read all of Felicity’s wonderful books and work.