Welcome to the ABPA website

ABPA Logo

WELCOME, membership of the Australian Bush Poets Association (ABPA) is comprised of writers, performers and individuals who are interested in bush poetry and enjoy written and live stories in rhyme and metre. If you have an interest in this piece of Australian culture called Bush Poetry, you are welcome here.


Aims
The objectives of the Australian Bush Poets Association is to foster and encourage the growth of Bush Poetry in Australia. By definition, Australian Bush Poetry is metred and rhymed poetry about Australia, Australians and/or the Australian way of life.

Membership
To join the Australian Bush Poets Association and receive our bi-monthly magazine, go to our Membership page.

The ABPA keeps in touch with our members through this website (and forum) and our bi-monthly magazine of Bush Poetry news, events, results of written and spoken competitions as well as samples of contemporary bush poetry. Many members have books, CDs and other products. These can be advertised in the magazine. For rates, click here. The deadline for ads and other content for the magazine is the 22nd of the month preceding publication. Magazines are published at the beginning of February, April, June, August, October and December.

ABPA Facebook page Check out our Facebook page.


Meet a Poet - Kevin Gee

Kevin Gee
Kevin Gee Born in 1967 in Irvine, Ayrshire on the West Coast of Scotland.

Educated at Loundoun Academy, where I left with a clutch of ‘O’ Grades at the end of my fourth year in 1983, to begin an apprenticeship with the South of Scotland Electricity Board. I moved up through various different roles in SSEB (latterly ScottishPower after privatisation) and ended up running a training centre.

In 2000 I changed careers and moved into mobile telecommunications, taking a role as a field technician with One2One (later to become T-Mobile.) Again, I progressed up through the ranks and ended up working as a Cell Planning and Optimisation Engineer.

In 2002, I moved to O2 (formerly BT Cellnet). This was when I had my first foray into writing and performing poetry. Our office held a Burns Supper celebration each year and I wrote a couple of poems that were performed by myself and one of my colleagues. My first one, and one that was my signature piece for some time, was my interpretation of what Robert Burns would have written about in modern Scotland, instead of his Address To a Haggis. I called this poem, “To A Vindaloo”.
Kevin Gee
In 2005, I emigrated to Australia with my second wife and in 2007 we were divorced. I then met my third wife, whose friend was a member of the Gosford Bush Poets. I went along a few times as an observer, but fell away again for a couple of years before returning and becoming a regular performer of a mixture of classic Australian bush poetry and my own works. Wife number 3 also became an ex-wife.

In 2017, I made yet another career change - this time into traffic signals. I am a Construction Manager for a Lendlease/Tyco Joint Venture, looking after RMS traffic infrastructure on the Eastern half of Sydney and surrounding districts.

On a recent trip around the East Coast of Australia with my new partner, I met Mick Martin at Cunamulla Tourist Park. We instantly hit it off (over several refreshing drinks), sharing stories and poems late into the night. He invited me to participate as a walk-up at the Bush Poets’ Breakfast in the entertainment grounds the next morning. I did a couple of my poems there and also met Gary Fogarty.

About a week later, Gary got in touch with me to say that he had been contacted by the Glen Innes Celtic Festival organisers because they were looking for a Scottish poet. Just one of those amazing, glorious coincidences that make you think that something was meant to be.


Kevin is an active member of Gosford Bush Poets and assists with their Facebook page.



See previously featured poets.


See previously featured achievers.



Festival Action

Toodyay Act Belong Commit Bush Poetry Festival 2018 Report

WA Championships

The WA Bush Poets & Yarnspinners Association Inc. held their annual Act Belong Commit Bush Poetry Festival in Toodyay on the first weekend in November. The Toodyay Memorial Hall was full for most sessions with many people coming from Nambung Country Music Muster where several of our poets performed the previous weekend. The Memorial Hall is a beautiful historic building and its character and decor make it an ideal venue for performing Bush Poetry. The Toodyay Shire is to be commended on the condition of the hall, and the manner in which it complements the historic nature of the town.

Following the effort involved in hosting the Australian Bush Poetry Championship last year, this year’s festival was much more relaxing for the committee and ran very smoothly. Entries were up on previous State Championships and the standard of poetry presented was as good as can be found anywhere in Australia. The Makit Hardware Trophy for WA Champion Bush Poet was won by new member Michael Barclay, with Peter Blyth runner up and our President, Bill Gordon in third place. Peter Blyth won the “Rusty Christensen Trophy” for Yarnspinning, with the ever popular Peg Vickers once again taking out the Poet’s Brawl.

The festival started on Friday afternoon with a workshop presented by the judges for the State Championships, Bob Magor (Myponga SA), Tom McIlveen (Port Macquarie NSW), and Keith Lethbridge (Armadale WA). A ‘Meet and Greet’ dinner followed at the Freemasons Hotel before the poetry started on Saturday morning. Proceedings concluded on Sunday afternoon with presentation of trophies and certificates to the winners by Toodyay Shire President Brian Rayner.

The Saturday night Variety Concert was well attended with Tom McIlveen and Susan Ashton heading a talented line up of artists to present a night of music and dancing. During the evening awards were presented for the written poetry competition held in conjunction with the festival. Major trophy, the Silver Quill, was won by WA poet Terry Piggott, with another local, Chris Taylor close behind. Terry has won many awards for his poetry Australia wide, and is proud to have one of Dave Smith’s trophies adorn his mantelpiece.

The Toodyay Mini-rail was again the venue for Sunday lunch with poems on road and rail safety presented in the attractive setting at Duigee Park. Chris Taylor again showed his prowess as a writer by gaining most popular poem in both sections.

WA Bush Poets and Yarnspinners Assn Inc president, Bill Gordon, acknowledged the generous support of the Toodyay Shire and the WA Government in making the festival a free public event. Healthway and Lotterywest are major sponsors with local support coming from Bendigo Bank, Makit Hardware, Toodyay Caravan Park and Toodyay Mini-rail.

Bill Gordon—President

Carleigh Zele with Brian Raynor
Novice - Carleigh Zele with Brian Raynor (Toodyay Shire President)


2019 Tamworth Country Music Festival

Golden Damper Performance Poetry Competition

Golden Damper Competition

More information here.

Entry form here.

____________________

2019 Longyard Poets' Breakfast

Rhymer's Roundup

Poets' Showcase