Leeward: A Memoir; by Geoffrey Lehmann
Former High Court justice Michael Kirby and Geoffrey Lehmann for the launch of Leeward: A Memoir (NewSouth) at the CIS this month.
Geoffrey Lehmann has been one of Australia’s leading poets and tax lawyers for several decades. A partner of PwC and chairman of the Australian Tax Research Foundation, he was involved in the design of Australia’s GST and other tax legislation. He was also short-listed for the T S Eliot Prize. His poetry has appeared in the New Yorker and in 2015 his Poems 1957-2013 won the Prime Minister’s Literary Award (Poetry). His Australian Poetry Since 1788, co-edited with Robert Gray, was one of The Economist’s best books of 2011.
In his frank memoir, Geoffrey describes how he was the late child of a bookish mother and a working-class father. Much to his mother’s surprise, his father, who was a launch driver, bought three houses on the waterfront at McMahons Point and became a slum landlord in the era of rent control. As a 10-year-old child, reading the begging letters from dozens of would-be tenants, Geoffrey became an economic rationalist and an atheist.