AustLit logo
Jessie Tu Jessie Tu i(A147695 works by)
Gender: Female
Heritage: Taiwanese ; Chinese
The material on this page is available to AustLit subscribers. If you are a subscriber or are from a subscribing organisation, please log in to gain full access. To explore options for subscribing to this unique teaching, research, and publishing resource for Australian culture and storytelling, please contact us or find out more.


Jessie Tu is a music teacher who has lived in Bondi. She was born to a Taiwanese mother and Chinese father. At the age of five, she immigrated to Australia- Melbourne, and then relocating to Sydney. She studied music at university having played the violin from the age of nine. She has taught full time at the Rose Bay independent girls school Kambala. Tu's poetry deals with her identity growing up as an immigrant and the shift from childhood to adulthood. She has received a six month residency as a Café Poet (a program funded by the government assisted Australian Poetry Organization) at her favourite café in Sydney - WellCo Café in Glebe. In December 2011, she participated in a National Young Playwrights' Studio workshop where a selected few young Australians from across the nation came together with industry leaders to write, learn and create new works.

Most Referenced Works

Awards for Works

Another Country 2017 single work prose
— Appears in: Mascara Literary Review , December no. 21 2017; Southerly , vol. 78 no. 2 2018; (p. 179-186)

'As though it were a competition, as though you could measure love, put it on a scale, graph it, draw charts and predict growth or recession. Calculable. Everything was measurable. He felt the need to quantify things. Everything had currency, as long as you knew where to look, how to decipher it in numerical components. That was how he saw the world and the world saw it fit to bend to his will. After experiencing the grief of losing a relationship with a man I loved, I came to understand, albeit over several years, what my father meant by this. I understood that he wanted to save me from the hurt of loving, of being the doer, not the receiver. The operator, the labourer. The less worthy. The Iove-er.'  (Publication abstract)

2017 runner up Deborah Cass Prize
And It Is What It Is i "You are given fingers before a mouth. Your ears are the last to form.", 2017 single work poetry
— Appears in: Australian Book Review , March no. 389 2017; (p. 40)
2017 shortlisted Peter Porter Poetry Prize
Last amended 28 Nov 2018 10:38:30
Other mentions of "" in AustLit: