Home Biography Time & Motion The Tenth Muse Sea at the Door News from the Front Air Mines of Mistila Dirty washing Lad's love

The Poetry of Sylvia Kantaris

The Sea at the Door
Portrait of Sylvia Kantaris by Nathalie Kantaris Díaz

Charcoal sketch of the poet by Nathalie Kantaris Díaz

This site is dedicated to the poetry of Sylvia Kantaris. She has published seven books of poetry and has won numerous awards, including the Poetry Book Society Choice of 1988 for The Air Mines of Mistila, written collaboratively with Philip Gross. Her poems have appeared in London Magazine, Poetry Review, New Statesman, Observer, and Times Literary Supplement, and have been translated into several languages, including: Finnish; German; Italian; Japanese; Korean and Spanish. Her work is published/recorded regularly in Australia and appears in many major anthologies. Several poems have been set to music, also used in film, discussed in academic books, set for exams and read on radio. Her poems have also been broadcast on BBC Radio.

On this site you will find information about the poet and her books, together with selections of her poetry.

“Kantaris writes clearly, frankly, movingly and humorously about a wide variety of human relationships” – Peter Reading, Sunday Times


About the poet:


Her work:

Time & Motion (1975)
The Tenth Muse (1983) - NEW! Full PDF download of this book now available
News From The Front (1983)
The Sea At The Door (1985) - NEW! Full PDF download of this book now available
Dirty Washing (1989)
Poems in memoriam for J.T.M. (1906-1987) from Dirty Washing
(link opens a new window or tab - close the tab to return here)
The Air Mines of Mistila (1988)
Lad's Love (1993)

Process of composition:

“Parting” from Dirty Washing

Draft 1
Draft 2
Draft 3

“Writing With Men” and “The Murmurings” (link opens in new window or tab - close the tab to return here)
An article from Stand magazine (Vol. 28 No. 3, Summer 1987), and a first version of a poem, “The Murmurings”,
that appeared in Stand (Winter 1986-7) and later published in The Air Mines of Mistila

<< Back to the Kantaris Home Page

Ordering information

Several of these titles are available for purchase.
For ordering information and prices please see Book List.

Permission to reprint

Sylvia Kantaris holds the exclusive copyright for all of her poetry.

Enquiries about permission to reprint should be made either by e-mail to: e-mail

or in writing to:

Dr Sylvia Kantaris, 14 Osborne Parc, Helston, Cornwall TR13 8PB, England – UK.

Sylvia Kantaris has asserted her moral right to be identified as the author of the poems contained in this website.

Return to top

Last updated: 09 December 2018
Site designed by Marta Lucía Díaz