Kathleen Jamie is Scotland’s ‘laureate’
Scotland’s next Makar, or Poet Laureate, is to be Kathleen Jamie, the award-winning writer who began creating poetry as a philosophy undergraduate at Edinburgh University.
The appointment was announced today by First Minister Nicola Sturgeon and Jamie will be the fourth Makar since the post was created in 2004 serving for three years and having succeeded the current Makar, Jackie Kay.
“The post confirms a weel-kent truth: that poetry abides at the heart of Scottish culture, in all our languages, old and new. It’s mysterious, undefinable and bold. It runs deep and sparkles at once” said 59-year-old Jamie, who also writes non-fiction, essays and reviews.
“Liz Lochhead, Jackie Kay and the late Edwin Morgan have held this post before me, a trio of major poets. If I can achieve half of their outreach, humour and wisdom, not to mention their wonderful verse, I’ll be doing well.”
Her task is to champion poetry in Scotland, to write verse for national occasions and “to meet folk, to support and encourage poetry, to laugh and lament and witness, and occasionally speak to our national life. I’m excited to begin” she said.