‘To a Hamnavoe Poet of 2093’ is a poem first published in Following a Lark (1996) – the final collection written and prepared for publication by the Orcadian poet and writer George Mackay Brown before his death. In this poem, Brown gives his poetic advice to Orkney’s (and more specifically Stromness’s) poets of the future.’
To a Hamnavoe Poet of 2093
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Dr Linden Bicket is a Postdoctoral Fellow at the Institute for Advanced Studies in the Humanities at the University of Edinburgh. In 2011 she received her doctorate, 'A God-ordained web of creation': The faithful fictions of George Mackay Brown', from the University of Glasgow. This was shortlisted for the Ross Roy medal for best PhD in a field relating to Scottish Literature. From 2011-12 she worked as research assistant on the project, 'George Mackay Brown: A Literary Executor's Archive'. This project was funded by a British Academy Small Grant, and meant that Linden spent six weeks in Orkney in order to catalogue and create the first archive of the manuscripts that Brown left to his literary executor after his death. This new catalogue of Brown materials provides an exciting new insight into his creative process, and forms the first single archival collection of his work in his native Orkney Islands. A digital catalogue of this material is now available on Orkney Library's website. It can be found here: http://www.orkneylibrary.org.uk/assets/GMB%20Collection%20D124.pdf
Yvonne Gray lives near Stromness. She is a writer, musician and flying teacher, working on Sanday three days a week and studying for the MLitt in Highlands and Islands Literature at the Centre for Nordic Studies, UHI. Under the imprint of Braga Press, she has published limited edition, hand stitched pamphlets of Orkney writing including Memories of Lambholm and its Chapel, a reprint of a letter by Domenico Chiocchetti describing the creation of the Italian Chapel. Her poems have appeared in journals and anthologies, including Cencrastus, New Writing Scotland (ASLS) and These Islands, We Sing (Polygon, 2011). She was awarded a Scottish Arts Council Bursary in 2002 and her collection, In the Hanging Valley, was published by Two Ravens Press in 2008. Reflections (Hansel Cooperative Press and Woodend Publishing, 2012), a collection of her poems with drawings by artist John Cumming, was shortlisted for the Callum MacDonald Memorial Award 2013.