MTC Cronin has published eighteen books (poetry, prose poems and essays) including a collection jointly written with the Australian poet Peter Boyle. Several of her books have appeared in translation including her 2001 book, Talking to Neruda’s Questions, which has been translated into Spanish, Italian and Swedish. Early 2009 saw the publication of Squeezing Desire Through a Sieve ~ Micro-Essays on Judgement & Justice (Puncher & Wattmann, Sydney) and Irrigations (of the Human Heart) ~ Fictional Essays on the Poetics of Living, Art & Love (Ravenna Press, USA). Her work has won and been shortlisted for many major literary awards, both internationally and in her native Australia. Cronin has studied arts, law, literature and creative writing and after working for the decade of the nineties in law, began teaching writing in primary, secondary and tertiary institutions. She currently lives, with her partner and three daughters, on a biodynamic farm in Conondale in the Sunshine Coast Hinterland of Queensland. Her latest poetry collection, The World Last Night [Metaphors for Death], was published in late 2012 by University of Queensland Press. A new collection – The Law of Poetry – is forthcoming through Puncher & Wattmann.


Every day, crucify what you know.
Watch the stone practising what it knows
of bulls and men.
When the dream begins to fall, don’t catch it.

Console the words which have lost other words.
Learn how to wholly speak
for the voice that speaks in shards`
but hints at love.

Move! And then move again!
The distance from your mother’s womb
is measured by adding what is now clear
to a bowl of yellow peaches.

Show me something perfect!
Learn the inside of your heart.
Be shaken by infinity awake.
Break poison like bread.

History Lesson

The cradle of history
is filled with rocks
which were all gathered yesterday.

The tomb of history
is surrounded by mourners whispering
in the ears of tomorrow.

Just what happened is nowhere.