Every Woman poem in Dazzle Ships pamphlet

Ciara Phillips’ Dazzle Ship in Leith Docks

Just a quick update to big-up the Dazzle Ships project that my poem ‘Every Woman’ has been included in!

Essentially, as part of the Edinburgh Art Festival, artist Ciara Phillips was commissioned to ‘dazzle’ a ship at Leith docks in the style of warships that were dazzled in the First World War as a form of camouflage. It is an amazing piece of art, which can still be viewed (so go check it out near Ocean Terminal while you can!), hand painted by a team of women artists, mirroring the women who painted the ships during the war.

Marjorie Lotfi Gill invited a group of 20 women poets (including me!) to write poems responding to the dazzle ship for a pamphlet called Signal. You can read Marjorie’s blog post to learn more about this project and the pamphlet:

My poem ‘Every Woman’, inspired by the dazzle ship, was the Scottish Poetry Library’s Poem of the Moment last week so you can read it here: http://www.scottishpoetrylibrary.org.uk/poetry/poems/every-woman

Poem of the Moment
My poem ‘Every Woman’ on the Scottish Poetry Library website

At the start of the Edinburgh Art Festival, poems from the pamphlet were read to kick off the exhibit, but a launch for the pamphlet with readings of some of the Dazzle poems will take place at Edinburgh Book Shop on August 22nd:

Signal pamphlet launch
at the Edinburgh Book Shop (Bruntsfield, at Holy Corner)
Monday 22 August
Free but ticketed.

Spaces are limited but I hope you can make it if you’re in the area! And definitely have a gander of the Dazzle Ship while it is still in port. A sight to behold!

EDIT: Readings of the poems are now available on Soundcloud here! Thanks Marjorie for reading mine in my absence!

Plans for National Poetry Day? This Thursday, October 8th!

Live1National Poetry Day is nearly upon us! Thought I’d be a bit poetry-festive and make a day of it.

Here’s what I’m planning to do on the day (despite having to go to work, which isn’t even remotely poetry-related…)


12:00am: I’m going to wake up at midnight and write until I have to get ready for work. Seriously. This is the plan anyhow, will keep you posted on when I actually manage to get up! Have a number of things I’m wanting to work on and the house is so quiet (the middle of the night after all). Fingers crossed. (Might take some tips from Michael if I get stuck.)

7:30am: Meant to be sunrise at 7:30 tomorrow, and as the theme for NPD this year is ‘Light’, I’ll head up to the local hill and watch the sunrise with a thermos of tea and something to write with! And an umbrella, this is Scotland after all…

9:00am: I’ve got to work, but can listen to music at my desk, so thought I’d keep it festive and have lined up a number of podcasts, recordings and such that I’ll listen to either live or backdated, including:

12:00pm: Lunch! Is there somewhere poetry-themed I can eat? The Blind Poet? Tips welcome!

  • Might peruse the Book Week Scotland schedule on my break & book in for some poetry events?
  • Definitely looking forward to seeing who wins the Big Words Edinburgh competition!
  • Will head out and see if I can find the Scottish Poetry Library’s poetry postcards around town.

5:00pm: Pass the time on my bus ride home with poetry apps (as usual?) – my go-to is the Poetry Foundation app which is available offline as well. Poetry Daily has a good app too. Poetry in your pocket all the time!

6:00pm: Poetry over dinner? I haven’t checked out the BBC’s Contains Strong Language, but looks like lots of great shows to choose from!

10:00pm: Poetry before bed! Will read from the bedside table pile until I zonk.

Other Activities in Edinburgh/Online

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Have a fun and poetry-filled day!

Adventures in Dublin

Happy St Patrick’s Day!

Handsome S and I are just back from a cheeky Lion&Sloth trip to lovely Dublin last week. RyainAir tickets were going cheap so we impulse bought, and it was AMAZING!

Only there for 4 days but managed to have a bumper edition of outings:


Guinness storehouse & tour (sipping pints in the skybar with amazing panoramic views of the city)
Sweetman’s for craft beer
Bewely’s for coffees (the original one is shut for refurb so we went to the cafe on George’s street)
A couple cool bookshops / oxfam secondhand bookshop (Winding stair was lovely!)
Queen of Tarts (Amazing cakes!! The lemon meringue tart was fantastic!)
Porterhouse for dinner (Irish stew!) & more craft beers.


Slice (so lovely! good service, great wee cafe find on the way to the zoo)
Dublin Zoo (‘baby everything!’ as my pal put it, elephants, zebras, so many cute things. and SLOTHS!)
Phoenix Park (tea & cake at the cafe)
Jameson distillery
indie cinema to watch ‘It Follows’. So freaky!


We went to 7 markets. I’m not even joking:

  • Temple bar food market & book market
  • Frances Street antiques market (we couldn’t find a market per se but went into the shops)
  • Newmarket food market
  • Liberty market
  • Christchurch market
  • Flea Market by Ha’Penny bridge

We then had a picnic in St Stephen’s Green with our food-winnings from the markets!
Trinity College (saw some students playing rugby)
Science Gallery (and went to the Lifelogging exhibit… essentially what this blog has become!)
Peruke & Periwig for some drinks.
Murphy’s Ice cream (that was lovely! the girl let us try all the flavours!)
Elephant & Castle (buffalo wings & a massive burger I could barely finish..)
Leprechaun Museum – This Dark Land (the evening ‘scary’ show!)


Took the DART to Howth
Howth Market (bread & cheese!)
Took the coastal path to the Summit & had a picnic lunch.
A cheeky gelato on the seaside before getting the train back and heading to the airport.

I really loved all the street art and colour in the city. We were impressed by the number of craft ales and pubs with their own niche selections (we tried to taste them all!). Even from a tourist POV, there were loads of great accessible places to try ‘Irish’ food, but I was also impressed by the number of international food places. And Howth was such a great way to bookend our visit – a bit of a country feel so close to the city was a literal breath of fresh air.

I also loved that many of the touristy places we went to interacted with me on social media too! Makes me feel loved. =)

Thanks for an amazing time, Dublin! (and thanks to our colleagues and pals for all the wonderful recommendations!)


March in the garden
Chickens helping with the gardening

Other highlights of the month

  • Completed the Getting Started refereeing training course offered by basketballScotland. A good course for a wee taster of what reffing is all about! Give the referees more credit now that I know how hard it is to do actually…
  • Volunteered my last Saturday shift at the Scottish Poetry Library before they shut for refurbishment. *sobs* But then later volunteering at Caesura on a school night. Fun!
  • Saw Kate Tempest at Bongo Club was ace! Think I prefer her poetry to her music but it was great to be there for the last show of the tour. Hyped deserved. ‘More empathy, less greed,’ was the motto of the show – can’t go wrong with that!
  • We also went to beautiful Lismore and did basically nothing for 4 days. We were meant to do writing but my laptop crashed (surprise!) so instead we watched old dvds and went for walks and cozied up in front if the woodburner fire. #bestlife
  • And had a lovely dinner with S’s folks at Redwood Bistro, the California inspired restaurant down the road from us.

Looking forward

  • Cove Park retreat for New Writers Award. Excited!!
  • Handing in my second-last paper for my Marketing course…
  • The Chicken Behaviour class I’ve signed up for!
  • Jupiter Artland
  • Years & Years in Edinburgh in May
  • Full solar eclipse!
  • Parklife tickets (Manchester) bought!
  • And my mom’s planning her next Edinburgh visit. Miss my mama!

readingNiall Campbell – Moontide
Liz Berry – Black Country
Emily Berry – Dear Boy
Sinead Morrissey – Through the square window
John Burnside – All One Breath

Murakami – Colorless Tsukuru Tazaki and His Years of Pilgrimage
Murakami – The Strange Library (this was a great find!)
And finished last audiobook of in Abhorsen series. Started on Sun Tzu’s Art of War! Required reading!


Kate Havnevik – Emperor of Nowhere
Sound Remedy – Victory (feat. Evvy)
Odesza – All We Need (feat. Shy Girls)
Odesza – Say My Name
XYLØ – America
Shura – 2shy (growing on me!)
Zella day – Compass
Zella Day – No Sleep to Dream

What’s next in store?!

Feeling nostalgic?: March catch-up