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S. K. Kelen S. K. Kelen i(A23129 works by) (birth name: Stephen Kenneth Kelen) (a.k.a. Steve Kelen; Stephen K. Kelen)
Born: Established: 1956 Sydney, New South Wales, ;
Gender: Male
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Born in Sydney, New South Wales, in 1956 S. K. Kelen is the son of Stephen Estaban Kelen and brother of Christopher Kelen (qq.v.). At the University of Sydney, he studied Philosophy and Literature and has worked as a Commonwealth Government public servant, a teacher of Creative Writing and a book reviewer.

Kelen is a prolific poet, his poetry having appeared in many journals such as Southerly, Scarp, Poetry Review, Heat, Meanjin and The Animist and also several anthologies and collections. He has served also as poetry editor at The Canberra Times. As well as teaching in the United States for a time, he has travelled widely in Asia and the Pacific. During a residency in Vietnam Stephen Kelen wrote prolifically, producing a chapbook of poems set in Vietnam which was published by The Gioi Publishers and sold in Hanoi.

Most Referenced Works

Awards for Works

Island Earth : New and Selected Poems 2012 selected work poetry

'As the title of his first collection indicates – The Gods Ash Their Cigarettes (1978) – right from the beginning of his career Kelen’s poems have stood out for their quirky titles and wry humour. Other notable features of his work are his strong and continuing interest in popular culture and his use of a contemporary colloquial voice.

'Like most of his generation, Stephen Kelen has been a great traveller so it is not surprising that he has written many poems dealing with life in countries outside Australia. While there are poems here dealing with many parts of the world, there is a particular focus on the USA and on Vietnam. In his travel poems Kelen is less interested in the natural world than in the man-made one and those who inhabit it: their lifestyles, beliefs, histories, and how these have both changed over time or resisted change. And, as always, he surprises us with his highly individual take on the familiar as well as the exotic.' (Publication summary)

2013 shortlisted Australian Capital Territory Book of the Year Award
Last amended 12 Feb 2015 17:29:16
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