Stephen Edgar's poetry is well-represented in a wide variety of Australian
literary magazines and anthologies. He is currently the recipient
of a prestigious two-year grant for poetry
from the Australia Council, Literature
Board (New Work - Established Writers).
Stephen was born
in 1951 in New South Wales; he has lived in
Hobart for many years and was Island Magazine's poetry editor
for a considerable time.
Lost in the Foreground, his latest collection,
was launched as part of the 2003 Tasmanian Readers and Writers
Festival in March 2003; a list of his publications is
Accolades for his poetry are plentiful:
In 2005, he won the inaugural Australian Book Review poetry
"Although faced with a high standard of entries and a very
strong shortlist, the judges made a quick and unanimous decision
on the winner because of the formal and imaginative qualities
of Stephen Edgar's
poem." (Source: ABR
media release dated 31/3/2005).
From the cover of Lost in the Foreground (2003):
is quietly building the Augustan
garden of modern Australian poetry. Seldom have
all the imaginable poetic qualities
been combined into such a thoughtful poise,
and with so easy-seeming a lyrical
impulse. His poems not only demand to be read: they
insist on being memorised, point
for point. In
Edgar's spare but steadily accumulating body of work, aesthetic
appreciation and scientific rigour are conceived in terms of each other
as if the two main modes of knowing had never
been separated. The result is an
entire, and entirely unexpected, bewitchment."
* * * * *
From the cover of Where the Trees Were:
"Here are thirty poems of vivid realisation. Readers will
find in them thought that is lit
with imagery as exact and sensuous as it is tactful, a
force and fineness of feeling, and
an intelligence that argues cogently, at times playfully,
always intently. For Stephen Edgar
is a craftsman who makes poems. He draws from the resources
of the past yet configures these formal
conventions in a versecraft that is
individual and compelling.
"In this, his fourth collection of poems,
he takes his gift further into that alert
mode of reflection that places his work,
with Gwen Harwood and A.D. Hope, in a tradition
of our best discursive poetry.
"When the discourse on Australian Poetry recovers its
equilibrium, there will be many who will be grateful that poets
of the caliber of Stephen Edgar persisted in their craft through
a discouraging era."