Vivian Brian Smith (b 1933), poet, academic, essayist, was born and grew up in Hobart. He graduated from the University of Tasmania and lectured in the English Department of the University of Sydney. A gifted teacher and editor, he influenced a wide range of emerging scholars and poets. His first poems were published in the Bulletin while he was still at school. In 1958 he was hailed with Christopher Koch as marking a renaissance in Tasmanian poetry. Since then he has published five volumes of verse and is widely regarded as one of Australia's leading poets. His poetry is quintessentially Tasmanian. While his lyrics celebrate this island's history and landscape, the outer world remains emblematic of the inner, his central theme the 'shape of life', the 'inner meaning'.
Further reading: 'Vivian Smith: A Celebration', Southerly, Winter 1996; Australian Literary Studies, October, 1995.