Rae Desmond Jones

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Rae Desmond Jones
Born 1941
Broken Hill, New South Wales, Australia
Occupation Poet, novelist, short story writer and politician
Nationality Australian

Rae Desmond Jones (born 1941) is an Australian poet, novelist, short story writer and politician.

Jones was born in the mining town of Broken Hill in the far West of New South Wales. Although many of his poems and stories are concerned with urban experience, he has always felt that desert landscapes are central to his language and perception. He writes in colloquial language, which sometimes explodes in powerful narratives packed with ambiguous sexual and violent imagery, especially in his earlier poems and some of his novels. His original and bleak vision is frequently mediated by gusts of earthy humour and unexpected sensitivity and honesty.

He became a popular mayor of Ashfield, an inner Sydney Municipality, from 2004 to 2006, and during that period held together a broad coalition of Labor Party, Green and Independent representatives. He has said that for him "poetry and politics are mutually contradictory, and he finds consolation from each in the arms of the other."



  • Orpheus With A Tuba, Makar Press, 1973.
  • The Mad Vibe, Saturday Centre, 1975.
  • Shakti, Makar Press, 1977.
  • The Palace of Art, Makar Press, 1981.
  • Blow Out, Island Press, 2008.
  • Baygone and other poems, Picaro Press, 2011.
  • Thirteen Poems from the Dead, Polar Bear Press 2011.
  • It Comes From All Directions: New and Selected Poems, Grand Parade Poets, 2013.


  • The Lemon Tree, Angus & Robertson, 1990.
  • Wisdom, Blackwattle Press, 1995.

Short stories

  • Walking The Line, Red Press, 1979.


  • Rae Jones: Poet With A Tuba, Vanguard 1985.

External links[edit]


  • "The Mad Vibe - An Interview With Rae Desmond Jones", Makar Magazine, Vol 10, Number 2, September 1974.
  • "The Shield of Achilles", Southerly Vol. 65 Number 3. 2005.