Living Published Women Poets in the UK
Claire Askew
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Claire Askew grew up in the Scottish Borders and now lives in Edinburgh. She is reading a PhD in Creative Writing and Contemporary Scottish Poetry at the University of Edinburgh, is a tutor at the University and a lecturer in Literature and Communication at Edinburgh’s Telford College.


The Mermaid and the Sailors (Red Squirrel Press 2011

Scottish Poems of the Year Scottish Poetry Library anthology 2008 and 2009.

As Editor

Skin Deep: An Anthology of Poems on Tattoos and Tattooing (Read This Press 2009)

Starry Rhymes: 85 Years of Allen Ginsberg (Read This Press 2011, forthcoming)

Founding Editor in Chief, Read This Magazine (Read This Press/Forest Free Press 2007-2010)


The Grierson Verse Prize (2008)
The Sloan Prize for Writing in Lowland Scots Vernacular (2008)
The Lewis Edwards Award for Poetry (2008)
The William Sharpe Hunter Memorial Scholarship for Creative Writing (2008)
The Virginia Warbey Poetry Prize (2010)

Eric Gregory Award 2010 shortlist

Young Writer of the Year, Scottish Variety Awards (2009) shortlist

‘Claire Askew’s verse can be enjoyed for its playfulness and sharp wit. More rarely, it can also be treasured for its sureness of voice, its rich linguistic texture and deep emotional core. Rooted in the everyday, she has an ability to make the ordinary startling. Often funny, frequently startling in her imagery, she is adept at giving us the surprises, anxieties and estrangements of the modern world. But a series of poems about grandparents, of vividly rendered domestic interiors and Northern landscapes, also haunt with their poignant sense of belonging and loss. The Mermaid and the Sailors offers a procession of poems that have been honed with precision and skill, but which are effortlessly entertaining, echoing in the mind long after one has read them. This generous debut pamphlet confirms that Claire Askew is one of the most distinctive young poets to emerge in Britain in recent years.’
— Alan Gillis

Claire’s blog, One Night Stanzas

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