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Diane Fahey (1945 – )

Diane Fahey was born Diane Mary Brotheridge in Melbourne in 1945. She attended the University of Melbourne, graduating with a Bachelor of Arts, a Diploma of Education (1972) and a Masters degree in English Literature (1975). After teaching at Colleges in Melbourne in the late 1970s, she moved to England, where she lived and studied for several years in the early 1980s. In 1986, Fahey relocated to Adelaide, where she lectured in Literature at the University of South Australia. She returned to Victoria in the 1990s, living for some time in Geelong. In 2001, she completed a PhD in creative writing at the University of Western Sydney. Fahey has been the recipient of several writing fellowships from the Literature Board of the Australia Council, and has been writer-in-residence at a number of institutions in Australia and overseas. She currently lives and writes in the coastal Victorian town of Barwon Heads.

Fahey began publishing her poetry in Australian and international poetry journals and anthologies in the late 1970s and early 1980s. She has written about experiencing strong depression in her early life, an illness which writing poetry helped her work through. Her first poetry collection, Voices from the Honeycomb, was published in 1986, and she has since published eight further collections. An avowedly feminist poet, Fahey has been interested in poetic rewritings of Greek mythology – in Metamorphoses (1988) and Listening to a Far Sea (1998) – and fairy tales – The Sixth Swan (2001), as a way of exploring psychological and feminist issues. She has also explored themes relating to ecology and the natural world in such works as Mayflies in Amber (1993) and Sea Wall and River Light (2006). Fahey has also been poetry editor of the journal Voices (1997), and in 2007 published a historical crime novella, The Mystery of Rosa Mortland.

Poetry Collections
  • Voices from the Honeycomb (Milton: Jacaranda Press, 1986).
  • Metamorphoses (Sydney: Dangaroo Press, 1988).
  • Turning the Hourglass (Sydney: Dangaroo Press, 1990).
  • Mayflies in Amber (Sydney: Angus and Robertson, 1993).
  • [with Jordie Albiston], The Body in Time/Nervous Arcs (North Melbourne, Vic: Spinifex Press, 1995).
  • Listening to a Far Sea (Sydney: Hale and Iremonger, 1998).
  • The Sixth Swan (Woollongong, NSW: Five Islands Press, 2001).
  • Sea Wall and River Light (Carlton, Vic: Five Islands Press, 2006).
  • Winter Solstice and Other Poems (Warner’s Bay, NSW: Picaro Press, 2008).
Suggested Further Reading
  • Jenny Digby, ‘Revisionary Mythopoeist: An Interview with Diane Fahey,’ Voices 4.1 (1994), pp. 54–68.
  • Diane Fahey, ‘Statements: Diane Fahey,’ in David Brooks and Brenda Walker, eds., Poetry and Gender: Statements and Essays in Australian Women’s Poetry and Poetics (St Lucia, Qld: University of Queensland Press, 1989), pp. 33–36.
  • Diane Fahey, ‘Why I Write,’ Kunapipi 16.1 (1994), pp. 102–04.
  • Diane Fahey, ‘Working with Greek Mythology: A Journey through Images,’ in Frances Devlin-Glass and Lyn McCredden, eds., Feminist Poetics of the Sacred: Creative Suspicions (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2001), pp. 221–41.
  • Kevin Hart, ‘After Poetry (17): A Quarterly Account of Recent Poetry: the Unknown,’ Overland no.131 (1993), pp. 42–48.
  • Geoff Page, ‘Diane Fahey,’ A Reader’s Guide to Contemporary Australian Poetry (St Lucia, Qld: University of Queensland Press, 1995), pp. 66–68.