Robbie Coburn was born in June 1994 in Melbourne and grew up on his family’s farm in the semi-rural locality of Woodstock, Victoria. He was educated at Whittlesea Primary School and Assumption College, Kilmore. He began writing poetry at the age of 14.
While still in high school, Coburn’s first published poem appeared in legendary, anarchist poet П. O.’s literary magazine Unusual Work. His work has since appeared in many national and overseas publications such as Poetry, Meanjin, Island, Westerly, Overland and Cordite. His poems have also been represented in notable anthologies including Writing to the Wire (UWA, 2016) and To End All Wars (Puncher & Wattman, 2018).
Coburn’s first poetry collection, Rain Season, was published by Picaro Press in 2013. A second collection, The Other Flesh, is forthcoming.
Coburn’s poetry is known for its highly personal, sometimes confronting nature, as well as his use of evocative, visceral imagery, always executed using a carefully refined poetic craft. From the beginning of his professional career, his work has consistently addressed topics such as childhood, relationships, isolation, trauma, mental illness and addiction.
Robert Adamson, one of Australia’s leading poets and editors, has noted that Coburn’s poems “come from tough experiences, yet are created with a muscular craft that glows with alert intelligence” and that they “create an inner life that draws in the reader” which “shimmers with light as much as it burns with ferocity.”
Coburn has performed his work all over Australia, including delivering readings at The Wheeler’s Centre and La Mama Poetica, and has been featured at literary festivals such as the Sydney Writers Festival and Perth Poetry Festival.
He has also facilitated poetry workshops at various literary events, and for National Youth Mental Health Foundation headspace.
Since 2015 Coburn has served as poetry editor for literary journal Verity La, and was an editor of the journal’s first retrospective anthology The Hunger.
He is currently working on a new collection of poems, titled Nurse.
He lives and works in Melbourne.
“Stay tuned! Nothing prepares you for the shock of a new voice in poetry, and nothing quenches that thirst better than a good dose of poetry. A poetry of place and sensibility can light up a whole landscape, and the poetry of Robbie Coburn does just that. In these poems we see him now in the very act of etching out the details, so hold on, and read on through.”
Mascara Literary Review
Australian Haiku Society
Mascara Literary Review
The Wonderbook of Poetry
Cordite Poetry Review
Writ Poetry Review
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