Welcome to the ABPA website

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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 web-site (and forum) also a bi-monthly magazine of Bush Poetry news, events, results of written and spoken competitions as well as publishing contemporary bush poetry. Many members have books, CDs and other products. These can be advertised in the magazine. For rates, click here

Facebook Check out our Facebook page.

Competition Package is now available with guidelines, judging and competition sheets, accredited judges list and application form and approved competitions list. If found necessary, these documents are open to amendment or changes as required following membership input and committee approval.

Roll of Honour lists Australian Bush Poetry Champions and ABPA Executive members since inception. There are also tributes to members who have recently passed on.


Frank Daniel Encouragement Award

Frank DanielFollowing the passing of great bush poetry mate Frank Daniel on 22nd December 2014, his daughter Catherine has offered to donate a large perpetual trophy that can be engraved each year with the winner’s name (and held for a year) and a smaller trophy that the winner can keep as an encouragement (not a best) award in memory of Frank Daniel.

Complying with Catherine’s wishes, it has been negotiated with her that this award be presented to an up and coming junior poet at a selected ABPA National or State Championship each year.

ABPA President Hal Pritchard expressed the ABPA’s gratitude to Catherine Daniel and advised her that the inaugural Frank Daniel Encouragement Award will be given at the Australian Bush Poetry National Championships in Corryong in April.  Catherine will be going to the ABPA Nationals which adds the wonderful bonus that she will be able to present the award herself to the initial recipient.

Frank Daniel’s involvement with bush poetry was both long-term and active.  As an inaugural member of the ABPA, over many years he fulfilled the demanding administrative roles of President, Vice President and Magazine Editor.  Frank assisted with the running of various bush poetry festivals and gained much personal success in competitions as a performing bush poet and yarn spinner.

In addition, Frank worked tirelessly for many charities and fund raising organisations and performed at community events around Canowindra where he spent his latter years. He was a much loved member of that region of NSW.

Last year Frank compiled the monthly insert for the ABPA Magazine promoting the achievements of other long-term members of our Association.  We now pay tribute to Frank’s own achievements and to the man we all respected and admired.

See more information on Frank on the previously featured poets page.

Frank's funeral was held in Canowindra on 29th December, 2014.


Meet a Poet – David Campbell

Feature Poet - we are introducing our wonderful poets (both performers and writers) to newcomers and to the general public by featuring a different ABPA poet on the Website each month. Poets featured will come from the entire membership and may be professionals, semi-professionals or amateurs, but each will be a worthy role model to represent the ABPA membership.

David CampbellDavid Campbell discovered the bush poetry world in 2002 when he won the Boree Log award with some C. J. Dennis-style verse called It’s Bloody ’Ard Ter Be A Bloke! That win re-vitalised an interest in rhyming verse that had previously only manifested itself in occasional pieces written for friends and work colleagues… and proved to be the first of many successes in the years since.  His current CV includes bush poetry’s major competitions, some of them more than once, and in January 2014 he was particularly delighted to take out both Poem of the Year (The White Man’s Way) and Book of the Year (Riders on the Wind) at the Australian Bush Laureate Awards in Tamworth.

An unusual aspect of David’s writing is his background in education as a teacher of senior mathematics and English, a fairly rare combination. So the logic of mathematics is married to a love of language, thus combining the discipline necessary for metre and rhyme with the sheer joy of playing with words.

That love of language has also seen him diversifying into other areas of writing, with awards for short stories and free verse as well as numerous articles published in a variety of newspapers and magazines. This, in turn, has resulted in workshop presentations at which he tries to foster an appreciation for the links between the various genres.  One of David’s particular interests is promoting the use of rhyming verse as a powerful medium for tackling contemporary issues so that it can better attract the attention of younger generations and provide a strong counterbalance to the considerable popularity of free verse. He believes that, while preserving the traditions established by our early poets, it is important to move with the times.

David has edited a bush verse anthology for Melbourne Books, contributed to three books of children’s poetry, produced a book of original short stories, and published two books of his own bush poetry (with accompanying CDs), details of which can be found on his website.

See previously featured poets.



Meet Your Committee – Gregory North

Each month we will introduce a member or members of our hard working and dedicated committee.
This month we meet:

TREASURER and WEBMASTER Gregory North

Gregory NorthEncountering his first bush poets in 2003 was a life-changing event for Greg. He was extremely fortunate that those poets were Denis Kevans, Milton Taylor, Terry Regan and Brian Bell - all wonderful writers and performers. How could anyone fail to be imprerssed? Soon afterwards he became friends with many other poets like the great Frank Daniel. With their encouragement, Greg went on to become male Australian champion three times in a row.

He realises the importance of giving back to the organisation that helped him meet poets and win awards. Serving as Secretary in 2010 and 2011, he took over the Treasurer's role with the failing health of Kym Eitel in 2013.

Greg manages to make a living from performing bush poetry and you can see more information on his website.



Member Achievements – Murray Hartin

The ABPA also wishes to acknowledge the achievements of members who specialise in specific areas which help to promote the cause of the ABPA and of Bush Poetry in general.

SPECIAL ACHIEVEMENTS – Murray Hartin

Murray HartinMurray Hartin has been part of the Australian Bush Poetry and entertainment scene since first stumbling into - and winning - the inaugural Tamworth Poetry Competition at the 1987 Country Music Festival. The victory led to a career in journalism and then, in 1996, he took the bold step to become a full-time poet.

Along the way he was part of the evolution of the Poets’ Breakfasts at The Longyard, featured on that group’s first cassette and with Marco Gliori staged the Festival’s first night-time poetry concerts in a very hot little church in the early ’90s which in turn morphed into ‘The Naked Poets’ – the madcap group that went on to record five CDs and perform to thousands of people over a 13-year period.

Thirteen years with The Naked Poets –“… well, it certainly hasn’t done me any harm.  And we are all still great mates. We released a Double Best of The Naked Poets album last year that is the pick of the five Naked Poets albums – lots of fun.”

A three-time Golden Gumleaf winner for Recorded Performance of the Year  and two for Book of the Year, Muz makes his living as a professional entertainer, performing guest speaking roles and MC duties at corporate functions, sporting lunches, charities dinners and festivals across the country.   For the last four years, at the Tamworth Country Music Festival Muz has been part of the team ‘The Four Funny Buggers’.

Murray’s yarn Turbulence is the most recited, most requested and most played poetic work in recent memory and in 2007 his stunning poem Rain From Nowhere touched the hearts of people Australia-wide. The emotional distance between these two poems is as wide as Muz’s repertoire and gives an indication there is more to this Moree-born knockabout than meets the eye.
But to Muz, it’s all about performance. “The only reason you’re there is because of the audience. You have to send out energy to them which they then chew up and throw back at you via laughter or applause.” 

Muz has two CDs, Muz! and The Tater Slater Caper plus a DVD, Bigger Than God’s Undies, plus his new book A Whole Lotta Muz,, a combination of poems and newspaper columns, which are all available on his website.


See previously featured achievers.