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Poetry | Poetic Intentions: Darby Jones, Cheryl Leavy, Aurora Liddle-Christie, Yasmin Smith + Joella Warkill

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Event description

Curated and hosted by author Ellen van Neerven (Mununjali), Poetic Intentions invites First Nations poets to share their work on the expansive stage within Rainbow Serpent (Version).

Join us for an evening of poetry from Darby JonesCheryl LeavyAurora Liddle-ChristieYasmin Smith, and Joella Warkill.

This activation is presented as a part of Daniel Boyd: Rainbow Serpent (Version).  



We are committed to making the IMA accessible to people of all abilities, their families, and carers, as well as visitors of different ages and different backgrounds.

The gallery entrance is on the ground floor of the Judith Wright Arts Centre, on Berwick Street. There is wheelchair access and an accessible toilet with baby changing facilities also located on the ground floor, and we welcome guide and support dogs.

If you plan to attend this event and have specific support needs we can accommodate, please contact, call (07) 3252 5750, or ask our friendly staff on-site. Read our access information for visitors here.  


Guest Biographies

Ellen van Neerven is an author, editor, and educator of Mununjali (Yugambeh language group) and Dutch heritage. Their first book, Heat and Light (2014), a novel in stories, won the David Unaipon Award, the Dobbie Literary Award, and the NSW Premier’s Literary Awards Indigenous Writers Prize. Their first poetry collection, Comfort Food (2016), won the Tina Kane Emergent Award. Their book Throat (2020) was Book of the Year, won the Kenneth Slessor Prize and the Multicultural Award at the 2021 NSW Literary Awards, and won the inaugural Quentin Bryce Award. Interweaving history, memoir, journalism, and poetry, their book Personal Score: Sport, Culture, Identity (2023) is now available.

Darby Jones is a Kamilaroi writer and editor whose work has been featured in The Jacaranda JournalBeyond Queer Words, and Lemonade: Letters to Art. Jones studies Writing at the University of Queensland, where he won the Kingshott Cassidy Poetry Prize in 2022. He received the Varuna First Nations Fellowship for 2024.

Cheryl Leavy is from the Kooma and Nguri Nations in western and central Queensland. An emerging poet, she was the 2022 winner of the Oodgeroo Noonuccal Prize for Indigenous Poetry. Her work has been published in Cordite. She is currently working on a children’s book based on her poetry, to be published by University of Queensland Press.

Aurora Liddle-Christie is an Arrernte and Jamaican multidisciplinary artist. Her practice draws on the experiences of people of colour and First Nations people, intersecting themes of decolonisation, walking between worlds, healing, and reconnection to Country.

Yasmin Smith is an editor, writer, and poet of South Sea Islander, Kabi Kabi, Northern Cheyenne, and English heritage. She works in fiction, non-fiction, children’s books, and poetry and focuses on supporting First Nations creatives. She is an editor at University of Queensland Press, where she oversees their groundbreaking series First Nations Classics. She was shortlisted for the Judith Wright Poetry Prize in 2020, and her poetry was published in Australian Poetry Journal’s Best of Australian Poems 2022.

Joella Warkill is a First Nations and South Sea Islander woman; descending from the Yidinji people and Pentecost and Ambrym Island/s in Vanuatu. Warkill has performed her poetry at the QLD Parliament, State Library of QLD, National Young Writers Festival 2019, Commonwealth Games 2018, and Voices of Colour.

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