Out of the Ordinary :
On Poetry and the World

A Conference in Canberra on December 5-7, 2022

Call for Papers


Edward Hopper, Gas, 1940, 66.7 cm x 102.2 cm, Museum of Modern Art, Public Domain

C.D. Wright was described in the New York Times as a poet who “belongs to a school of exactly one.” For Randall Jarrell, “the good in poetry is always a white blackbird, an unusual and unlikely excellence.” Poetry seems to have exceptionalism at its core.


But poetry is also a practice of the commonest medium there is—language. People within all classes and groups cherish its use: the well-landed expression, irony and word plays, subtle forms of power.


Poetry’s status as the oldest and most widespread of the verbal arts likewise implies close links to traditional functions. Still, a residual strangeness seems to pertain to poetry in all cultures. It may be that tradition is a stranger thing than we tend to imagine.

How do poems relate to the world they proceed from or create? What is the world of a poem?


Proposals for 20 minute papers, or 90 minute panels, are invited, in relation to the poetry or poetics of any language or historical period. Proposals may address the above CFP or any related themes involving poetry and poetics, including


  • politics

  • repetition

  • gender

  • catastrophic climate change

  • habit

  • rhythm

  • excess

  • ethnicity 

  • rhyme

  • personae

  • emotion

  • elipses

Please submit your proposal to

info@ucpoetry2022.info  and be sure to include: 

1. Title of paper 

2. Name, affiliation

3. 250-word abstract 
4. 100-word bio     

Our deadline for abstracts formally closed on 1 June 2022 and we have some seventy papers programmed. But we have since secured a venue capable of fully-hybrid presentation mode*, and it is spacious to boot. Nor do we particularly believe in deadlines. That being the case, we are happy to consider late abstracts (for online or in person papers) for some time yet. Please get in touch via the email above to discuss.
(*nb all panel presentations will be open to presenting and auditing online, but only a lmited number of the keynotes wil be accesible online, due to our desire to use UC's lovely outdoor locations).