Friday, November 16, 2007

Olds, Peter

[Photograph: Trish Evans]

Peter Olds (b. 1944)


Contemporary New Zealand Poets in Performance (2007):

Waking up in Phillip Street
Doctors Rock

Aotearoa NZ Poetry Sound Archive (2004):


1. From the Hut Window [1-5]
2. Night Fishing
3. Lone Sailor
4. Elephant
5. Waking up in Phillip Street
6. Disjointed on Wellington Railway Station

Bio / Bibliography:

Peter Olds grew up in Dunedin & Auckland, where he attended Seddon Memorial Tech. He left school at 16 & worked in a warehouse before taking up window dressing in a large retail store in downtown Auckland. Wanting to grow his hair long he left window dressing & became a cook. He began writing in the mid-60s after being influenced by folk & pop music.

In 1966 he took a train journey to Dunedin & met James K. Baxter in a coffee bar. Baxter encouraged his writing. After a spell in Cherry Farm mental hospital he joined Baxter’s commune in Jerusalem, on the Wanganui River, & taught Baxter how to eel & cook goat. In the early ‘70s, Olds joined up with Trevor Reeves, of Caveman Press, & through that association published several collections of poetry over the following decade. He was active in the ‘70s poetry reading circuit. In 1978 he was awarded the Robert Burns Fellowship. Born in Christchurch in 1944, he now lives in Dunedin.


Lady Moss Revived, Caveman Press, 1972
The Snow & the Glass Window, Caveman Press, 1972
Freeway, Caveman Press, 1974
Doctors Rock, Caveman Press, 1976
Beethoven’s Guitar, Caveman Press, 1980
After Looking for Broadway, One Eyed Press, 1985
Music Therapy, Earl of Seacliff Art Workshop, 2001
‘Oh. Baxter is Everywhere’, Square One Press, 2003
‘It Was a Tuesday Morning’: Selected Poems 1972-2001, Hazard Press, 2004

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