Now Listen

I’ve been reading poems into my phone and my laptop quite often over the past few months.

Earlier this year The Academy of American Poets published ‘Home’ as part of the poem-a-day series. It’s a portrait of my father in his last months of his life, and you can read and listen to it here.

Then there are three poems in edition #10 of iamb: poetry seen and heard – ‘Hands’, ‘Rodney’ and ‘Ward’. I’m in good company – Jay Whittaker, Penelope Shuttle and others.

Last year I was commissioned by Edinburgh’s Push the Boat Out poetry festival to write poems about central Edinburgh for A Poetry Mile. I wrote three new poems, and they also accepted a couple of older poems, ‘Close’ and ‘William ‘Deacon’ Brodie’.

You can find recordings of me reading them on the Poetry Map section of the website -again in good company, including Alan Spence and JL Williams – but you do have to hunt for the poems, as even if you know the city well they’re not quite where they should be.

To listen to ‘Jacob’s Ladder’, click the marker on Calton Road just west of the junction with New Street.

‘Close’ is the marker on the High Street by Filling Station.

The marker for ‘Greyfriars Bobby’ is inside Greyfriars Kirkyard.

Rather than inside his eponymous tavern, ‘William ‘Deacon’ Brodie’ can be found loitering at New College, between Mound Place and Castlehill.

‘The Ballad of William Knox’ should be in the New Calton Burial Ground, or New Calton Cemetery as it’s called on the map, which runs from Regent Road down to Calton Road. Knox’s needle stands roughly between Archibald Elliott and Robert Stevenson, but there’s no marker in the vicinity. If you manage to locate him, let me know.

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