Crikey! I’m reading poems in Australia!


After my last, incredibly recent, sojourn to Australia, I never thought I’d be back. I regretted this immensely because I didn’t see a single kangaroo and hardly too any pictures except this triumphant one at the Sydney Opera House. It will be a hard trip to beat since I got to travel, thanks to the Edinburgh International Book Festival, with the superb Emily Ballou and Ewan Morrison, play a Golden Hour style gig at the Melbourne Writer’s Festival with the legendary Christos Tsalkis and watch old friends Andy Hazel and Rapskallion rock the stage. This time, I’m flying solo, and getting out of Melbourne and Sydney. I’m really excited to be appearing at the National Poetry Festival in Darwin and am especially excited about the gig in Canberra (which, I’m told, starts at ‘wine o’clock’!), not to mention the thrill of being at the Clunes Booktown Festival with thousands of other book-lovers, events and talks. So, please, come or tell your friends / family to come if you can’t. Here’s my schedule but I want say sincere thanks to Australian Poetry for inviting me and setting up all these great gigs, Creative Scotland for the funding assistance, and the Edinburgh International Book Festival for introducing to the deep, deep south the first time around.

If you are NOT interested in me being in Australia (and who could blame you) perhaps you’ll enjoy Hugh Jackman crashing into the Sydney Opera House in a zip-line catastrophe….. Wolverine!


10 – 13 May – Wordstorm & National Poetry Festival 2012: A Festival of Australasian Poetry

11.00am: NT open education centre – poetry workshop via video link to remote indigenous schools
12.15pm: panel discussion – ‘ut pictura poesis – the aesthetics of poetry’
1.00pm: reading – my poems and maybe some ‘covers’
5.30pm: comedy debate – ‘sonnets are better than sex’

Monday, 7 May – The Manning Clark House, Canberra — 19.30

a lovely informal space where I’ll read as many of your poems as I like with room for questions, jokes, heckling, and wine sipping. I expect an enthusiastic evening.

Saturday 5 May – Clunes Booktown Festival — Writer’s Workshop — 11am:

in which I’ll be hosting an informal writer’s group. We’ll be looking at Scottish poetry and creating our own poems.

My appearances in Australia have been partly funded by the generous support of Creative Scotland. Myself and the Wordstorm / National Poetry Festival gratefully acknowledge this integral support.