Writer Tony Birch talks with singer, songwriter and national treasure Paul Kelly about his new collection, Love is Strong as Death: Poems chosen by Paul Kelly.

Featuring more than 300 works from a range of ancient and modern authors, the deeply moving anthology speaks to the themes that have proven so powerful in Paul’s own music: love, death and everything in between.

Hear Paul discuss this lovingly curated tome and reflect on how poetry has influenced his life and music.

This recording is available on all major podcast platforms.

Love is Strong as Death is available from Penguin.


Paul Kelly (Australian)

Paul Kelly

Paul Kelly was born in Adelaide in 1955. He wrote his first song in 1976 and has been making records since 1978 — more than thirty to date. He has collaborated with many other songwriters and written music for film and theatre. In 2010, he published a 'mongrel memoir', How to Make Gravy, and in 2019 an anthology of poetry, Love is Strong as Death. His most recent album is Thirteen Ways to Look at Birds.

Tony Birch (Australian)

Tony Birch

Tony Birch is the author of three novels: the bestselling The White Girl, winner of the 2020 NSW Premier’s Award for Indigenous Writing, and shortlisted for the 2020 Miles Franklin literary prize; Ghost River, winner of the 2016 Victorian Premier’s Literary Award for Indigenous Writing; and Blood, which was shortlisted for the Miles Franklin Award in 2012. He is also the author of Shadowboxing and three short story collections, Father’s DayThe Promise and Common People. In 2017 he was awarded the Patrick White Literary Award for his contribution to Australian literature. In 2021 he will release two new books, a poetry book, Whisper Songs and a new short story collection, Dark As Last NightBoth books will be published by University of Queensland Press.