Welcome to my home-made website. 
                               UPDATED May 2024:                           

Postal AddressJohn Jenkins, C/- Post Office, Kangaroo Ground, Victoria 3097 Australia.


John Jenkins is a widely published Australian writer of poetry, short fiction, essays and general non-fiction. 

He is presently working on a number of projects, some listed on this site.

John has lived and worked in several countries, taught masterclasses at home and overseas, and won a number of prestigious literary awards. He was born in Melbourne, and lived in Sydney from 1974 to 1978 before returning to his home city. A former journalist, now living on the rural fringe of Melbourne, John has worked extensively in both commercial and literary magazine publishing, on metro and local newspapers, some radio and a little TV. He has also worked as a teacher, book editor and sessional academic. He is the author, editor, co-author or co-editor of 24 books, with several more now waiting in the wings. He is currently working on a collection of short stories. For more details, see the Latest Posts and Publications and Short Stories sections of this website.

On this website, the main emphasis is on new writing projects, works in progress and recent publications. 

Newest books: 

A Double Act, the Selected co-written poems of John Jenkins and Ken Bolton is now available from Puncher and Wattmann, see

John's 2022 poetry collection is The Sky Inside Us, published by Ginninderra. Its 108 pages contains new and previously unpublished poems – many written (almost) yesterday. That said, a sparkling sprinkle date back to the 1960s and 1970s. See:

His 2019 collection of poetry Poems Far and Wide is published by Australian literary publisher Puncher & Wattmann: For more details, also see the Latest Posts and Publications and Poetry sections of this website. See: (where my book is now listed). And:


John has also recently written and illustrated a book of silly scribbles and nonsense poems, A Half-Baked Fruitcake of Nuts and Nonsense. See:

Here is an extract from my nonsense book:

Illustration below by JJ.

Marcel the Poodle

marcel the poodle

     Marcel the poodle
     Ate oodles of noodles
     And haute cuisine
     From his fork.

He wolfed down croissants,
Soufflé and poulet
And duos of baguettes
Served with pork. 

    “It’s a mere bagatelle
    To dine out so well,”
    Said stylish Marcel
    Looking great.

                “A true gourmet like me
                 Has éclairs with tea
                 Plus a big pile of snails 
                 On his plate.      

                                         And I’m fond of fondue
                                                           Or a gateau or two
                                         With a bowl of French fries
                                                            Till I’m sate.”

                                                   With a glass in his paw
                                                   Marcel poured himself more
                                                   Bordeaux red and some fizzy champagne,
                                                   Then he sniffed and he licked AND HE ATE!


My rambling essay titled Beyond: The New Australian Poetry, taking readers through the maze of the influential small press and literary magazine explosion in Australia, appears in No Placebos No. 7, edited by Petre Spence, and published by Donnithorne Street Press, 2024. 

My short story   Shadow Dancing  is the latest to be published – in P76 Magazine, Number 8, the Sonic Poetry Festival Edition, Spring 2023. And  Shadow Dancing  is a humorous fantasy love story set in Newcastle, NSW, about a dancer smitten with his partner Luna, and eagerly awaiting her return. P76 is full of much interesting material, available from Rochford Press, see:

*** A restoration for celebration! My essay on Australian painter Jeffrey Smart, titled Jeffrey Smart (1921-2013): a painter’s eye to poetry and storyoriginally published Nov. 3, 2013, in the Long Paddock section of Southerly Literary journal (issue 73.3, titled 'The Naked Writer') has now been restored to the new Southerly website, and you can directly access it here: first, go to then scroll down to The Long Paddock, ESSAY heading, and there it is!

Over the years, I have dabbled a little in music and song writing. And interested people can download eight sound files below. They are parts of a piece I have titled The Four (and a half) Seasons. I composed this work quite recently, and it contains natural sounds sampled from my place in Kangararoo Ground, Victoria. Firstly, I played the piano parts on an acoustic piano; next, I treated them electronically; and finally combined the treated piano with the natural sounds I had recorded. Two of the eight sections also contain fragments of sampled and treated recordings from other players/musicians (one from Oz composer Syd Clayton; while another has treated parts of a Tchaikovsky symphony). The parts of my Four (and a half) Seasons for you to download, are as follows: 1. Slow shimmer in summer, frogs, birds, piano. 2. Autumn warm to cool. 3. Syd Clayton and winter rain. 4. Spring, the tempo quickens. 5. Summer night, piano, eagle cry. 6. Summer evening calls, sampled and treated vinyl, crickets. 7. If it quacks like a duck, and walks like a duck... 8. Slow shimmer in summer, returning


Prizes, residencies, fellowships:

John was Open Winner of the 2018 Elyne Mitchell Writing Award for his short story, The Girl Who Wasn’t There. He was featured in 2014 as part of the World Lit teaching and reading series hosted by The Arts House, Singapore. He won the 2013 Melbourne Poets Union International Poetry Prize, and 2003 Arts Rush/Shoalhaven Poetry Prize. In 2004 he was winner of the International James Joyce Foundation Suspended Sentence Fellowship for his long dramatic poem, Under The Shaded Blossom, which included reading and teaching sessions at the Irish Writers Centre, Dublin. He was Commended for a play entered in the 2014 Fellowship of Australian Writers Di Cranston Award; and won Second and Third Prize in the 2013 Gwen Harwood Poetry Prize. John has also been short-listed for numerous individual poetry and/or short story competitions.



Poetry collections:

The Sky Inside Us, Ginninderra, 2023.

Poems Far and Wide, Puncher and Wattmann, 2019.

Growing Up With Mr Menzies, John Leonard Press, 2008.

Dark River, Five Islands Press, 2003.

Days Like Air, Modern Writing Press, 1992.

The Wild White Sea, Little Esther, 1990.

Chromatic Cargoes, Post Neo, 1986.

The Inland Sea, Brunswick Hills Press, 1984.

Blind Spot, Makar, 1977.

Zone Of The White Wolf and Other Landscapes, Contempa, 1974.

Verse novels:

A Break in The Weather (sole author), Modern Writing Press, 2003; subsequently Commended in the 2004 FAW Christina Stead Book Award.

Poetry collections, co-written with Ken Bolton:

A Double Act, Selected Collaborations, Puncher and Wattmann, 2023

Lucky For Some, Little Esther, 2012

Poems of Relative Unlikelihood, Little Esther, 2005.

Nutters Without Fetters, PressPress, 2002.

The Wallah Group, Little Esther, 2001.

The Gutman Variations, Little Esther, 1993.

Airborne Dogs and Other Collaborations, Brunswick Hills Press, 1988.

Verse novels, co-written with Ken Bolton:

Gwendolyn Windswept (co-written with Ken Bolton) serialized in Otis Rush magazine, Nos 9 to 13, 1994/5.

The Ferrara Poems (co-written with Ken Bolton) Experimental Art Foundation (S.A.) 1989.

Film-script, co-written with Ken Bolton:

Co-author (with Ken Bolton) of film-script for The Ferrara Poems, directed by Jenny Robertson, premier at Frames International Festival of Video and Film, Adelaide, 1990.)

Fictional biography, co-written with Robert Harris:

The Arthur Tantrum Letters, Stitch and Time, 1975.

Short fiction, anthologized:

John has had many short stories published, and anthologized in Joiner Bay & Other Stories (ed. Van Neerven, Margaret River Press, 2017); Knitting & Other Stories (ed. Rossiter, Margaret River Press, 2013); SciFi Film Festival Stories (online,; The Dubbo Weekender and many others.

John is currently completing several short story/novella collections, with publication details to be announced.

Fiction Anthologies:

Soft Lounges (co-editor with Antonia Bruns) Melbourne Fringe Festival/Champion Books, 1984.

The Outback Reader (co-editor with Michael Dugan), Outback Press, 1975.

Dreamrobe Embroideries and Asparagus for Dinner (co-editor with Walter Billeter) The Paper Castle, 1974.

Cheeries & Quartermasters (co-editor with David Miller) The Paper Castle, 1975.


Travelers’ Tales of Old Cuba (editor), Ocean Press, 2002, revised edition 2010.

Found About: Art in Public Places; Chapter 6 of Writing Art, A Series Of Essays On the Nillumbik Art Collection, Nillumbik Shire Council, 2006.

Arias: Recent Australian Music Theatre (co-writer, with Rainer Linz), Red House Editions, 1997.

22 Australian Contemporary Composers (writer/editor) New Music Articles, 1988.

Poems featured on radio:

John’s poems have been broadcast on ABC Radio National’s Poetica series, in 2003, 2006, 2010, 2012 and 2014; and on Radio 5UV and elsewhere. ‘Dark River (2006)’ audio can still be accessed online. See:

Radio plays:

Under The Shaded Blossom (scripted by John Jenkins, ABC Radio National Airplay series, 2006). See:

Open Your Eyes, Exercise (co-scripted with Rainer Linz, Radio 3RRR, Melbourne, 1991).

For more recent information also see Auslit:




 kanga birdbathCheers, John

Kanga at birdbath pic: JJ


© John Jenkins 2022.   New Projects | About/Contact