broadsheet features historical New Zealand poets

Sunday, October 20, 2013 by Mark Pirie

The twelfth issue of my poetry journal, broadsheet: new new zealand poetry has gone historical with a special feature on The Star poets of Christchurch 1922-26, a mostly unknown and previously unacknowledged group of early New Zealand poets.

I came across the 'lost' group in the Christchurch Star by happenchance while researching my grandfather Tom Lawn's Canterbury rugby career during the 1920s.

I decided to collect them in a special issue in order to bring their work to public attention and notice.

I couldn't find the Star group mentioned in New Zealand poetry anthologies or in studies of the period. A check of the recent Oxford history and companion similarly brought up no references to the poets.

Of these Star poets, the best known is Una Auld (nee Currie) who also appears in Bill Manhire's recent 100 New Zealand Poems and 121 New Zealand Poems anthologies.

The Star poets included are: Una Auld (nee Currie), R D Brown, Aline Dunn, H S Gipps, H H Heatley, Bessie L Heighton, Honor Gordon Holmes, E A Irwin, W J McKellow, Patricia Parker, T E L Roberts, Sherratt, H Tillman and Ida M Withers.

To read the online pdf of the issue, go to: