St. Mungo’s Mirrorball is back on Thursday 14th November at 7pm with poets Frank Ormsby, Vicki Husband and Stephen Watt. Frank Ormsby was revealed as the eighth Professor of Poetry for Ireland last month. Irish president Michael D Higgins made the announcement at a reception at Queen’s University Belfast, describing Mr Ormsby as “one of a golden generation of poets”.
“His poetry frequently engages in themes of origin, exile and elegy, often in a domestic setting,” he added. A central figure in Ulster poetry since the 1960s, Mr Ormsby took over from the current holder of Ireland’s Professor of Poetry, Eilean Ni Chuilleanain, in October.
The Clubroom, CCA, Glasgow. Members free; guests £7 (£4 conc.)
Frank Ormsby was born in 1947, in Enniskillen, County Fermanagh, Northern Ireland, and was educated at Queen’s University in Belfast. He is Head of English at the Royal Belfast Academical Institution. His books of poetry include the collections Ripe for Company (1971); A Store of Candles (1977); A Northern Spring (1986); and The Ghost Train (1995).He has also edited a number of anthologies, including Thine in Storm and Calm: An Amanda McKittrick Ros Reader (1988), The Collected Poems of John Hewitt (1991) and Northern Windows: An Anthology of Ulster Autobiography (1987).
In 1992 Frank Ormsby received the Cultural Traditions Award, given in memory of John Hewitt, and in 2002 the Lawrence O’Shaughnessy Award for Poetry from the University of St Thomas at St Paul, Minnesota. Ormsby was editor of the Honest Ulsterman from 1969-89, and has edited the Poetry Ireland Review (Numbers 53-56). He also edited The Hip Flask: Short Poems from Ireland (2001), a collection of Irish lyric poems including work by W. B. Yeats, J. M. Synge and Seamus Heaney; and The Blackbird’s Nest (2006), an anthology of poems from Queen’s University, Belfast. His latest collection is The Rain Barrel which was published by Bloodaxe this year
Vicki Husband has recently published Sykkel Saga with Mariscat Press, a pamphlet-long poem about a cycle trip through the Norwegian Arctic, incorporating Norwegian landscape, language and Norse myth. Vicki’s debut collection This Far Back Everything Shimmers (Vagabond Voices) was shortlisted for the Saltire Society’s Scottish Poetry Book of the Year Award 2016.
Stephen Watt is the current Makar for the Federation of Writers (Scotland) and Dumbarton Football Club’s Poet-in-Residence. He has four published collections, the most recent, Fairy Rock, is the world’s first crime book written entirely in verse. He has also curated the book ‘Ashes To Activists’ on behalf of the Joe Strummer Foundation.