Eileen Chong

Eileen Chong is a Sydney poet.


About Eileen Chong

Eileen Chong is a Sydney poet. She is the author of eight books. Her work has been shortlisted for numerous prizes, including twice for the Prime Minister’s Literary Award. Her first book, Burning Rice, is a prescribed text on the Higher School Certificate syllabus for 2019-2023.

Photo: Charlene Winfred

Articles about Eileen Chong

Wedged Between the Old and the New

In the career of a poet, the third and fourth books are usually where a certain maturity of voice and style is reached, and a staking out of key thematic ground is achieved. Chong’s formal mastery, her stanzaic control, the deft handling of lyric form, and the use of understated narrative, qualities evolved from the first two collections, are more fully honed in Painting Red Orchids and Rainforest. In a time when younger poets favour ellipsis and discontinuity, when there prevails a distrust of autobiography and narrative in poetry, Chong has, over a quartet of books, crafted a fragmented narrative of migration and settlement, and made of the lyric form a vehicle for the quest for home and belonging.

Articles by Eileen Chong

Lunar Inheritance by Lachlan Brown book cover

Time’s Moebius Strip

I first met Lachlan at Gleebooks in Sydney in 2014, at the launch of Judith Beveridge’s Storm and Honey. I remember speaking with him, and being confounded when he gave me his business card. He didn’t look like a ‘Brown’ – Lachlan is half-Chinese, and I had immediately assumed he would have a Chinese surname. In Lunar Inheritance, he explores the complexities of ethnic origin and identity as sited on his body and in his explorations of suburban Ashfield as well as the city of Guangzhou in China.