University of The Third Age, NSW
Eucalyptus Eco Poetry Project, 2017
Shoalhaven University of the Third Age (Shoalhaven U3A) is part of an international movement which promotes and practices lifelong learning by providing low cost educational opportunities for retired people in a relaxed and informal environment. No prior educational qualifications are required; no degrees are awarded.
The Eucalyptus Eco-Poetry Project (EEPP) is a 'branch' of New Shoots created in collaboration with Bundanon and Eucalypt Australia. The project invites poets and students to emotionally and creatively connect with eucalyptus through a poetic lens. By uncovering the hidden stories and secrets of the iconic green giants we often take for granted, the EEPP enriches understanding of eucalypts at Bundanon Trust and beyond.
On 28 March, students from Shoalhaven High School spent the day with poet-in-residence Kirli Saunders. Kirli worked with Bundanon’s environment and education teams to deliver eucalypt-inspired poetry workshops that creatively connect students with country and culture.
This project is the educational branch of New Shoots - Poetry inspired by plants.
Kirli Saunders is a proud Gunai woman, with ties to the Yuin, Gundungurra, Gadigal and Biripi people. She currently resides on Dharawal Country. Kirli is an international children’s author, poet and emerging playwright. She manages Poetry in First Languages and Poetic Learning at Red Room Poetry. Her picture books include CBCA nominated and internationally published, The Incredible Freedom Machines (Scholastic) and forthcoming, Our Dreaming and Happy Every After (Scholastic) and Afloat (Hardie Grant). Her poetry Collection, Kindred was Highly Commended in Black&Write 2018. She was Runner-up in the Nakata Brophy Prize 2018. Her poetry has been published by a number of journals (Cordite, Overland, Planthunter) and commissioned for public art. She is co-writing her first play, Dead Horse Gap.
In 2019, you can find Kirli at NT Writers Festival, Queensland Poetry Festival, Sydney Writers Festival, Enough Said and Word in Hand. She returns as writer in residence at The Literature Centre, Fremantle this year where she will perform The Incredible Freedom Machines with Matt Ottley and the Western Australian Symphony Orchestra in rural WA, at Coco’s Island and Christmas Island.