By the time of his death in January 1996, Norman MacCaig was known widely as the grand old man of Scottish poetry, honoured by an OBE and the Queen’s Medal for Poetry. This book is the third edition of “MacCaig’s Collected Poems” and is edited by his son Ewen. With 778 poems, 100 of them previously unpublished, this is a remarkable collection.
A Kist of Thistles is a new anthology of radical Scottish poetry. It is edited and introduced by Jim Aitken, an Edinburgh-based writer and lecturer, and illustrated with images by Fiona Stewart.
Most of the 62 poets in A Kist of Thistles would agree with Mary McCabe that Scotland should be engaged in ‘planning a better nation’. But the poetry is not just about Scottish self-determination. This wonderfully diverse and skilful group of poets is also engaged with international, environmental and broader social issues that affect everyone.