author | poet | playwright

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Kirli’s debut children’s picture book The Incredible Freedom Machines, illustrated by Matt Ottley follows a young girl as she adventures with her newly unearthed freedom machine.  It made the CBCA notable list for Picture book of the Year (2019) and was shortlisted for Speech Pathology Australia’s Indigenous Children Category 2019. It was selected for  Bologna Book Fair 2018/19 and has been published in Russian, French and English.

Order The Incredible Freedom Machines:

Her Forthcoming titles include: 

Our Dreaming, illustrated by Dub Leffler (Scholastic, 2019). This book shares the Yuin and Gundungurra Dreamings as were told to Kirli by her Elders.

Happy Ever After (Scholastic) tells the haunting story of Kirli’s Mother’s removal from her Yuin country in the early 1970s. It will be available in February 2020.

Afloat (Hardie Grant)  follows the story of an Elder teaching foraging and weaving practices to a child, to tie canoes together, to a form a raft to survive an incoming storm.  This text explores the themes of unity, oneness, reconciliation, strength, endurance and courage.

Book Kirli for workshop, performance or school visit.


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Kirli’s poetry Collection, Kindred (Magabala) was released in May 2019, it was Highly Commended in Black&Write 2018. Kirli was Runner-up in the Nakata Brophy Prize 2018. She has been shortlisted for a WA Premiers Literary award (winner to be announced in July). Her poetry has been published by a number of journals (Cordite, Overland, Planthunter) and commissioned for public art with RBG Victoria, Lendlease, Red Room Poetry and Raining Poetry Adelaide. She was poet in residence at Q Station (2018) and Bundanon Trust (2017/2018). Kirli is an experienced teaching poet and has led a range of Red Room Poetry Poetic Learning  and Stella Prize workshops, performances and presentations in a number of public schools and educational communities with a range of partners across Australia. She leads Poetry in First Languages and is cultivating a First Nations poetry anthology with Red Room Poetry. You can find Kirli at NT Writers Festival, Queensland Poetry Festival, Sydney Writers Festival, Enough Said and Word in Hand in 2019.

Book a workshop or performance.

Order Kindred:


Dead Horse Gap is an original story set in a fictional NSW south coast town in the uneasy settlement period between 1850 and 1880. The performance will combine music, projections, movement, text and lighting to create a quirky noir western atmosphere, surreal landscape, bizarre characters and the poetic iconography of the hero’s fatal journey into wilderness. This a new theatre work is co-produced by Tathra-based company Crimson Rosella in partnership with Merrigong Theatre Company in Wollongong. Along with co-creators are Lindy Hume, Leland Kean (co-directing) and Candelo-based musician/songwriter Heath Cullen, Kirli will join a creative team as that is made up of some of the country’s finest theatre artists including digital artist Mic Gruchy, novelist Rohan Wilson, designer Katja Handt and lighting designer Damien Cooper as a co-writer.