Suffolk Poetry Society hosts Sorley celebration

SUFFOLK POETRY SOCIETY this weekend  offers  its own  small celebration of Sorley MacLean’s poetry  within a larger schedule of poetry and ‘soundings’ on Saturday 25th June 2011 at the Quaker Meeting House, St John’s Street, Bury St Edmunds. Cameron Hawke Smith, one of the organisers of the Suffolk event,  is just returned from participating in the four days of celebration and critical debate on Skye and Raasay at the Ainmeil Thar Cheudan: A Centenary Celebration of Sorley MacLean (1911-2011) event.

The Suffolk poetry event includes contributions from Anna McCrae a native Gaidhlig speaker from Barra, a singer and teacher of drama and an active member of the Gaelic Society of London. James Knox Whittet  will also contribute. He was born in Islay, now living in Norfolk and is the author of several books including 100 Island Poems. His version of Hallaig was commended in the Stephen Spender Translation Prize. Cameron Hawke Smith, is a former archaeologist, museum curator and now amateur poet and translator. See his own blog site at
All are members of Suffolk Poetry Society The website the Bury St Edmunds Poetry cafe has a constantly updated publication of poems,events, etc.

Timetable for the day below

2.00pm Welcome: Rob Lock from Poetry Aloud

The mild mad dogs of poetry

The Gaelic tradition and the poetry of Sorley MacLean, in the  year of the centenary of his birth. Anna McCrae, James Knox Whittet, Cameron Hawke Smith

Interlude: Ceirwin Tomas Welsh   harpist


The house of many tongues

Some of the ancient and modern languages of the poetry of the British Isles and beyond explored by Ian Griffiths, Cameron Hawke
Smith, Joan Sheridan Smith, Anne Boileau & David Simpson, Helen Bourne

around 3.30 Tea Break, with music from

Ceirwin Tomas and

Colin Whyles


The isle is full of noises, sounds and sweet  airs

Some dialect poetry

Scots – Anna McCrae and Cameron Hawke Smith

Yorkshire – Carol Bleiker

Lincolnshire – Colin Whyles

Wiltshire/Dorset – Michael Stagg

Suffolk – Beryl Dyson

4.30pm Guest poets

J.S.Watts, author of Cats  and Other Myths (Lapwing Publications)

Clare Crossman, author of Going  Back
(Firewater Press) and The Shape of Us (Shoestring Press): My Silences are always enemies, the poetry of Elizabeth Jennings



A lighthearted ‘open mic’ opportunity for everyone to entertain  us with a sound poem. Invitations to all to contribute!

5.30 pm close

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