The North-East makar, Sheena Blackhall, is releasing a new buik ca’d “A Baird’s Life”. It taks the reader through her life in poyems, short stories an images.
Below is a press release fae Alan Spence an Rymour Books, explainin mair:
SHEENA BLACKHALL is a weel-kent figure not only in the North-east of Scotland but throughout the country. She is a poet, a singer, an artist, a scholar and a teacher. Indefatigably, she has been performing her work and producing poetry in pamphlets for decades.
A Bard’s Life is a contribution to and, in some ways, a culmination of her writing. It tracks her life through its beginnings in rural Aberdeenshire and Aberdeen to her travels to far-flung destinations in search of new poems in a mixture of poetry, prose and pictures.
A few years ago I edited a beautiful hardback collection of Sheena Blackhall‘s poems, published by Aberdeen University Press. To make the book I had read through over a hundred of Sheena‘s pamphlets, choosing a mix of her poems and songs, aphorisms and bairn-rhymes, in English and her own unique brand of North-east Doric. It was a joy, engaging at length with this uniquely talented writer. Her work is earthy and witty and funny (often scathingly so) but also lyrical and profound, brilliantly surreal, truly spiritual.
This present collection, then, is particularly welcome. As the title, A Bard‘s Life, would suggest, it‘s a kind of autobiography. But Sheena being Sheena, it‘s no ordinary telling of her extraordinary story. It‘s told as a sequence of poems and short stories, illustrated with family photos and her own drawings. She doesn‘t flinch from facing the harsher aspects of her life but moves through to a kind of acceptance which is grounded and true.
By Alan Spence
Release Date: 25th March 2021