Peter Porter arrived in Britain fifty years ago and lived here until his death in 2010. From 1974 he visited his native Australia often and considered himself part of the present-day poetical worlds of both nations. From 1968 he was a freelance literary journalist and reviewer. He published seventeen books of poems, plus four further volumes with the Australian painter Arthur Boyd. He was married twice and had, with his second wife, nine grandchildren.
by Peter Porter
I have no new shell to retreat to
Having scanned the beach (it has never
Seemed so wide and such a tympanum
For the thundering ocean) and watched the gulls
by Christine PorterWhen Peter Porter died in 2010, his reputation as one of the greatest Australian poets had long been settled. Christine Porter, Peter's wife, talks about one of his last poems, 'Hermit Crab' and what it means to her.
'We don't believe in progress / yet how can taste run backwards?' It's not that the speaker in Peter Porter's poem 'So Unimaginably Different and So Long Ago' doesn't believe in progress, more that he is afraid of it. It's much easier to admire a Medi...
In this extract from Peter Porter's highly emotive collection Better than God, the award-winning poet ruminates on the act of writing, the writing Self, and the bridge between what is and what could be.