Poetry & Poetics

The Poetry & Poetics cluster at the University of Glasgow is a company of poets, all teaching poetry both or either as creative practice or as one of historical phenomena of literary and artistic cultural production through the centuries, in Scotland and internationally.

The poets work in the areas of Creative Writing, Scottish Literature and English Literature, but our work is also outward-facing, addressing not only dedicated poets, nor only professional scholars and critics, but rather anyone who enjoys reading, looking at paintings, listening to music, performing art in its infinite diversity of forms, and more broadly, enquiring into things.

Further, we are committed to poetry as a form of intellectual, emotional and linguistic exploration and interpretation. Aspects of the research and scholarly investigation by creative practice involved in this commitment are evident in The Hunterian Poems and The Hunterian Museum Poems anthologies, ed. Alan Riach, in which a range of poets address or are prompted by paintings held in The Hunterian Gallery, or objects (both natural and humanly-engineered) in The Hunterian Museum. Jane Goldman is a contributor to the second anthology, alongside such poets as Edwin Morgan, Liz Lochhead, Gerrie Fellows, Bashabi Fraser, Aonghas MacNeacail and Richard Price. The poems reflect upon and open questions about methods and structures of understanding that cross the arts and the sciences.

The poets are regularly involved in teaching creative writing at the University of Glasgow and are also engaged in public events, readings, exhibitions, performances, lectures and talks in other academic institutions and at festivals throughout Scotland and internationally.

Associated Staff:


Among numerous publications, the following are recent examples of the poets’ work.

Sophie Collins: Who Is Mary Sue? (Faber & Faber, 2018); small white monkeys (Book Works, 2017)

Jane Goldman: Border Thoughts (Sufficient Place, 2014); ‘Queer Woolf: two poems and a preamble’, Vitginia Woolf and the World of Books, ed., N. Wilson and C. Battershill (Clemson University Press, 2018); ‘Professor Tom Leonard: poet and scholar – good style’, Tributes to Tom Leonard, ed. Larry Butler (PlaySpace Publication, 2019), and a collection of criitcial essays, With You in the Hebrides: Virginia Woolf and Scotland (Cecil Woolf, 2013).

Colin Herd: Swamp Kiss (Red Ceilings Press, 2018); Click and Collect (Boilerhouse Press, 2017)

Alan Riach: The Winter Book (Luath Press, 2017); Landscapes: Poets, Portraits and Landscapes of Modern Scotland, with Alexander Moffat and Ruth Nicol (Lillie Gallery, 2017); Homecoming (Luath Press, 2009)

Members Biographies

Jane Goldman is one of 12: a collective of women writers using a shared Google document to post monthly poems in response to one another’s writing, working alongside and in response to one another’s creativity, generating home-based art collections and a tight-knit community of women artists. See https://12poetry.wordpress.com/

Colin Herd has been centrally active in various events, including in 2016, ‘Outside-in / Inside-out: A Festival of Outside and Subterranean Poetics’ (funded through AHRC Digital Transformations Fellowship, with over 80 poets, 3 exhibitions and attracting total audiences across the symposia, events and exhibitions of over 800 people); and in 2017, the Peter Manson symposium, funded by the Andrew Tannahill Fund for Scottish Literature at Glasgow University, which drew international scholars to the University to present research on Manson’s significant body of poetry and translation.

In addition, since 2015, Glasgow University has hosted a wide range of leading international contemporary poets, including the Pulitzer Prize winners Gregory Pardlo and Rae Armantrout, Bernadette Mayer, C.A. Conrad, Eileen Myles, Tom Leonard, Chirikure Chirikure, Uchida Go, Jamaican Poet Laureate Lorna Goodison and many more.

Doctoral students