This week the club had the pleasure of Jim Carruth (Poet laureate of Glasgow) talking about his career in poetry.

The evening featured Jim’s latest work ‘Killochries’ a verse novella published by Freight (2015). This was a collection of poems that formed a narrative about the a young man from the city who is ‘burned out’ and goes to work on a remote jimcarruthreadingsheep farm of a relative for 12 months. The old farmer, who has never left the hills, doesn’t care for the modern world and treats the young man with taciturn indifference. At first the young man is repelled by the remote strangeness of this new world but as time passes events bring the two closer together and the young man discovers a hidden, unlooked for beauty that all his modern experiences had not prepared him for.

Jim read 7 or 8 of the poems to the group which established the main characters. Even for non-poetry connoisseurs this was a great treat to hear the poet’s voice aloud as he spoke his own words.

In addition Jim also gave us a recap of his career from winning ‘pamphlet’ of the year’ to collaborating with the sculptor who created the Kelpies at Falkirk – they are Jim’s poetic words set in the stones beside them. Though a portion of Jim’s work has a rural/country flavour reflecting his background this by no means defines him. Jim read a selection of poems from a wide range of styles and subjects which he has tackled over the years. This is made all the more impressive in that he (like most poets) holds down a full time job as well.

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