Rosemary Dobson Biography
(1920– ), Bulletin, The Ship of Ice, In a Convex Mirror, Child with a Cockatoo, Cock Crow
Australian poet, born in Sydney; she studied art at the University of Sydney. She spent some time in England and Europe where she became deeply interested in Greek antiquities and Italian paintings. Many of her poems first appeared in Bulletin, including the title poem of The Ship of Ice (1948) in which she reflects upon the timeless quality of art and its ability to capture moments suspended in time. These themes recur in much of her work, notably in ‘Still Life’, ‘Young Girl in a Window’, and in the title poem of In a Convex Mirror (1944). In Child with a Cockatoo (1955) and Cock Crow (1965) she introduces more personal themes. Her finely crafted poems display a cool lyricism and are frequently concerned with the processes and effects of art and the role of the artist. Greek Coins (1977) was inspired by the culture of ancient Greece, and Over the Frontier (1978) includes a series of poems celebrating the Greek traveller Pausanias. Her other collections include Selected Poems (1973; revised 1980), The Three Fates (1984), Collected Poems (1991), and Untold Lives (1992). She has also translated collections of Russian poetry, including Seven Russian Poets (1978; With David Campbell), and has edited several anthologies including Australian Voices (1975) and Sisters Poets (1979).