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Best New Zealand Poems now online

8 April 2013

Best New Zealand Poems now online

The 2012 issue of Best New Zealand Poems ( has been published online, and takes readers on a journey from Turangi to Greece, via Buddhism, and back to Taranaki and Cathedral Square.

The editor is New Zealand's Poet Laureate Ian Wedde, the author of 14 poetry books, as well as several novels and essay collections.

Wedde says he was drawn to an enticing element in the poems he selected—their tendency to resist and thwart. “I want poetry to do what other kinds of writing don’t, or can’t—I prefer subversion to propriety.”

Many of the poems in his selection are also energised by cross-cultural influences. Murray Edmond uses the Japanese ‘tanka’ form; C K Stead translates the Italian poet Eugenio Montale; Albert Wendt writes of a Hawaiian mountain; and Serbian-NZ poet Aleksandra Lane channels the spirit of the inventor Nikola Tesla in a series of ‘found poems’.

Series editor, poet and Victoria University’s International Institute of Modern Letters Senior Lecturer Chris Price says: “Best New Zealand Poems reveals that our poets are as much at home in the world as the country they live in.”

A number of the poems are also available as audio recordings. Christchurch’s Frankie McMillan, teacher of creative writing at the Christchurch Polytechnic and the Hagley Writers’ Institute, is among a number of poets who can be heard reading their work on the site.

Best New Zealand Poems was first published online in 2001, and features a different editor each year. In 2011 Victoria University Press published The Best of the Best New Zealand Poems, a selection from the first 10 years of the collection in book form.

Best New Zealand Poems 2012 can be viewed at and is published with the support of Creative New Zealand, and hosted by the New Zealand Electronic Text Centre at Victoria University.


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