Wordfringe 2009Programme StrandsEvent Calendar




1st–31st May 2009

Week 5

The Word Birds

Voyager Poets

Not Drowning but Waving

Fresh Ayr

Young People's Poetry Competition Prizegiving

Stuart MacBride: Blind Eye


Closing Verses

Full Wordfringe Calendar

Not Drowning but Waving

Poems and songs on the theme of leaving and returning home


Wednesday 27 May 2009
7pm – 8.15pm

Review by
Olivia Farrington

Gordon Highlanders Museum, Aberdeen [Map]

Admission free
No booking required

A team of poets, songsters and musicians from Scotland, Ireland and England, gather to celebrate the universal experiences of hail and farewell. Emigres and immigres, new babies, first days at school, honeymoons, wars and other familiar and family events will be honoured in verse and music.

Programme devised by Gerard Rochford. With Grace Banks, Doirena Culloty, Brian Farrington, Bryony Harrower, Roddy Neilson, Sheila Templeton and Morag Skene.

Grace Banks

Grace Banks has always sung and for years has been part of the local traditional music scene, also influenced by traveller Stanley Robertson. Grace sings with feeling, whether her own songs, reflecting her love of nature, or from the rich folk tradition: ‘I like a song which paints a story’.

Doirena Culloty

Doirena Culloty is a student nurse studying at RGU in Aberdeen. She was born and raised in Annaghmore, County Kerry, moved to Cork City to study childcare (hated it) and care of the elderly (loved it), then worked in a care home before moving to Aberdeen to pursue a career in nursing. When she moved to Aberdeen, she found inspiration from Aberdeen Writers' Circle and Dead Good Poets. Books and Beans is now her second home. Watch out for the girl with the short brown reddish hair and charming smile! She is here to write poetry.

Bryony Harrower

Bryony Harrower was born in February 1993. She is a pupil at Robert Gordon's College and lives with her parents and three sisters in Alford. Bryony has been writing short stories and poems since she was a child and has already won a number of prizes: Short story The Mirror's Secret was a 2008 Word Festival short story winner, Death's Voice was commended in the Animal Aid national poetry competition, she won the Poem in the Sand competition with Sea Woman, judged by the Blue Salt Collective, in 2008, and her poem The Courtesan won the Robert Gordon's College S5-S6 Poetry Competition in 2008.

Roddy Neilson

Roddy Neilson has been heavily involved in the Scottish folk scene for many years, playing fiddle, jaw harp, singing plus doing workshops with adults and children. At present he is based in Edinburgh and plays with the Cosmic Ceilidh Band, Blueflint plus the Southern Tenant Folk Union (a bluegrass band based in London).

Sheila Templeton

Sheila Templeton was born in Aberdeen, spent an itinerant childhood ranging from Rannoch Moor to Dar-es-Salaam. Her work draws on that rich Buchan landscape and now the changing light of the Ayrshire coastline.

Poems in New Writing Scotland, Poetry Scotland and The Herald. Won the Scottish Association of Writers Poetry Trophy 2002 and major awards in the Killie Writing Competition. In 2007 she won third prize in the James McCash Scots Language Poetry Competition. Her poem Hairst Meen was selected by Edwin Morgan from over 260 entries to the competition. In 2007 Sheila won the McLellan Trophy.

Slow Road Home is Sheila's first collection.

Morag Skene

Morag Skene is a North-East quine and is passionate about the arts. As part of her work as a carer she directs the Willowbank All Stars and Showtime groups and spends her free time involved with the Lemon Tree Writers, Wordfringe Festival Players, WAC (Writers and Actors Collaboration), Cruden Bay Panto, or doing the odd bit of Aiberdeen writing, as she calls it, and singing.

Brian Farrington

Brian Farrington was born in Dublin in 1925. Before coming to Scotland 40 years ago he lived in France. He was Director of Aberdeen University Language Centre. He is known internationally as a designer of language learning software. He has published poetry, a study of W. B. Yeats and research articles on language learning and French linguistics. His chapbook Salt Suds for Keeps (Koo Press) has been well admired. Brian is a fine performer of his own and others' poetry, which he often recites from memory.

Gerard Rochford

Gerard Rochford's publications include Eating Eggs with Strangers, The Holy Family and Other Poems, and Figures of Stone (Koo Press). Founder member of Dead Good Poets, convenor of poetry readings at Books and Beans. He is included in Janice Galloway's selection of Best 20 Scottish Poems of 2006, for the Scottish Poetry Library. A featured poet on Poets Against the War, principal guest reader at Planet Earth, Victoria B.C. and recently at the launch of the Cromarty Film festival.

Promoted by

Dead Good Poets
Spring Tides Poetry Group
Gordon Highlanders Museum

Supported by



Wordfringe 2009Programme StrandsEvent Calendar


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