We sing a single song: For Manchester

Manchester Arena by Andy Nugent CC BY-NC-ND 2.0

Two years ago the poet Tony Walsh wrote and performed We Are Manchester for the twentieth anniversary of the Manchester Arena. Poetry commissioned for a different occasion now takes on searing new significance.

Seeding success: a new Paisley pattern

“In 21st century Scotland, resources of renewal are found elsewhere. Today we’re here to learn how communities are transforming town centres – with the right amount of support from public bodies and private enterprise.” Paisley aims to be City of Culture – and more

Where does Scottish writing go from here?

“Nasty Women will showcase a wide array of female voices, many of them new writers, focusing on intolerance and inequality to cover everything from Trump’s America to pregnancy. Like Freight, the arrival of 404 Ink is a sign that when we talk about cutting-edge Scottish publishing, the small publishers are increasingly defining the scene.”

Talking Turkeys: five poems for Christmas 2016

Turkeys, one black one white, with tails fanned out

At the ragged end of a sorry year Fay Young goes in search of poems for Christmas and finds five offering humour, humanity and even a hint of hope that the world is not definitively going to hell on a handcart: praise to “a writer’s ability to touch people’s hearts with a phrase that doesn’t stop wars but makes people smile.”

Poetry with a European twist in Portree

“For when it comes down to it, this, for me, is what it is all about. Hope for the future – as long as mountains stand and rivers run – lies in our interconnectedness. Across islands, countries, continents and generations.” Skye poetry prompts a human affirmation across continents.

There viewed from here

Gordon Munro reviews two poetry books challenging a west-centric view of love, life, war and exile. Here is his invitation to Take Tea with the Taliban and, by the way, Don’t Forget the Couscous.