Isles poet Watt scoops top award
Isles poet, songwriter and musician Roseanne Watt has been crowned the winner of prestigious Edwin Morgan Poetry Award.
Ms Watt is the third person to win the £20,000 prize set up by the late and revered Scottish poet.
She was announced the winner at the Edinburgh International Book Festival on Wednesday night.
Ms Watt’s poems are shaped by the landscape and language of her birthplace.
She is the poetry editor for the online literary magazine The Island Review.
She was also the winner of the 2015 Outspoken Poetry Prize (Poetry in Film) and runner-up in the 2018 Aesthetica Creative Writing Award. She lives and works in Edinburgh.
The Edwin Morgan Poetry Award is a competition for full-length, unpublished manuscripts. The judges were novelist Janice Galloway and poet John Glenday.
Ms Galloway said of Watt that “Her poems are built from the sight, sound and heartbeat of land as much as from the sea and salted-away memory, alongside which we find the most complex and mysterious of human experiences. This is a celebration of language, place and the mystery of being alive, alive, alive.”
Mr Glenday added: “There’s a remarkably mature intelligence at work in these profound, assured and wilfully spare poems—Roseanne Watt’s is a truly individual and welcome voice.”
Shetland poet Peter Ratter was also shortlisted for the award.
The award is open to poets aged 30 or under.