Vincent O’Sullivan

"Then it’s Wellington we’re coming to! It’s time, she says, it’s time surely For us to change lanes, change tongues, They speak so differently down here. From ‘Driving South with Lucy to the Big Blue Hills’, 1998. "

FullName:   Vincent O’Sullivan
Date of Birth:   1937 - present
City:   Wellington

Vincent O’Sullivan was noted in the 1960s for his poetry, with its subversive wit and facility for original and evocative imagery. From the 1970s he began publishing short fiction, extending his reach in the 1980s to drama for radio and theatre.

Vincent O’Sullivan is iconic to New Zealand as a writer who can cover a range of serious topics - death, life, love, and so on - all in the voice of an ordinary kiwi. There’s no poetic snobbery about his work, unless it’s in satire, and yet he manages to cover heavy topics deftly and with authority. O’Sullivan can even make you laugh aloud in the process.


Manhire, B., Whiteford, P., & Akenson, D. H. (2007). Still shines when you think of it: a festschrift for Vincent O’Sullivan. Wellington: Victoria University Press.

Panny, J. D., Black, S., Millar, P., & Whiteford, P. (2015). Let the writer stand: the work of Vincent O’Sullivan. Wellington, Aotearoa New Zealand: Steele Roberts Aotearoa.

Vincent O'Sullivan: poets and poetry. (2015, June 05). Retrieved January 08, 2018, from

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