Love is Strong as Death - Poems chosen by Paul Kelly
A collection of more than 300 of Paul Kelly's favourite poems.
Paul Kelly’s songs are steeped in poetry. And now he has gathered from around the world the poems he loves – poems that have inspired and challenged him over the years, a number of which he has set to music. This wide-ranging and deeply moving anthology combines the ancient and the modern, the hallowed and the profane, the famous and the little known, to speak to two of literature’s great themes that have proven so powerful in his music: love and death – plus everything in between.
Here are poems by Yehuda Amichai, W.H. Auden, Tusiata Avia, Hera Lindsay Bird, William Blake, Bertolt Brecht, Constantine Cavafy, Alison Croggon, Mahmoud Darwish, Emily Dickinson, John Donne, Ali Cobby Eckermann, James Fenton, Thomas Hardy, Kevin Hart, Gwen Harwood, Seamus Heaney, Philip Hodgins, Homer, Gerard Manley Hopkins, Langston Hughes, John Keats, Ono No Komachi, Maxine Kumin, Philip Larkin, Li-Young Lee, Norman MacCaig, Paula Meehan, Czeslaw Milosz, Les Murray, Pablo Neruda, Sharon Olds, Ovid, Sylvia Plath, Dorothy Porter, Rumi, Anne Sexton, William Shakespeare, Izumi Shikibu, Warsan Shire, Kenneth Slessor, Wislawa Szymborska, Máire Mhac an tSaoi, Ko Un, Walt Whitman, Judith Wright, W.B. Yeats and many more.
About Paul Kelly
Paul Kelly was born in Adelaide, one of nine children, in 1955. He wrote his first song in 1976 and has been making records since 1978, more than thirty to date. He has collaborated with many other songwriters, and written music for film and theatre. Two of his songs were included in the Australasian Performing Rights Association's (APRA) 2001 list of the Top 30 Australian songs of all time - 'To Her Door' and 'Treaty' (written with Yothu Yindi).
His prose has appeared in Meanjin, The Monthly, Rolling Stone and The Age and in 2010 he published a 'mongrel memoir', How To Make Gravy. His most recent album is 2019's Thirteen Ways to Look at Birds.