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Walter Billeter (1943 – )

Walter Billeter was born in Muraz sur Sierre, Switzerland, in 1943. While studying draftsmanship in Basel, he began to write and publish poetry and prose, and co-founded a literary magazine Sphaira (1962–64). He came to Australia in 1966, and subsequently worked as a draftsman in Sydney and Melbourne. He continued to write poetry, and published his work in Australian literary journals including Poetry Australia. In 1973 he published his only poetry collection, Sediments of Seclusion. Associated with the ‘Generation of ’68’ poets, he established a publishing imprint, the Paper Castle, and collaborated with John Jenkins on a short-lived literary magazine, Etymspheres (1974), and with Robert Kenny and Kris Hemensley on the experimental anthology 3 Blind Mice (1977). Billeter has also translated the work of modern German poets including Paul Celan and Konrad Bayer.

Poetry Collections
  • Sediments of Seclusion (Armadale, Vic: Contempa Publications, 1973).
Suggested Further Reading
  • Kris Hemensley, ‘A Germane Peregrination,’ Meanjin 37.4 (1978), pp. 497–512.
  • Kris Hemensley, ‘A Vague All-Exaggerating Twilight of Wonder: Australia’s New Poetry,’ Meanjin Quarterly 35.1 (1976), pp. 56–70.
  • Manfred Jurgensen, ‘Joining the “Mainstream”: First-Generation Australian Writers 1967–1989,’ Eagle and Emu: German-Australian Writing 1930–1990 (St Lucia, Qld: University of Queensland Press, 1992).
  • Walter Tonetto, Exiled in Language: The Poetry of Magaret Diesendorf, Walter Billeter, Rudi Krausman, and Manfred Jurgensen (New York, USA: Academia Press, 2001).