Edinburgh's Radical Bookshop

Scotland's Poets of colour: the Scottish BPOC Writer's network #LighthouseTakeOver


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For Independent Bookshop Week, we invited some of our author palsto take over our Instagram account for an hour, recommending books on a chosen theme or in a chosen genre. In case you missed, we’ve published a list of each author’s chosen books (alongside their own work!) here on the website.

Our friday list comes the Scottish BPOC Writers Network, formerly known as Scottish BAME Writers Network (2018-2021).

The network was co-founded in 2018 by Alycia Pirmohamed and Jay G Ying (Jay Gao), and aims to connect Scottish BPOC writers with the wider literary sector in Scotland and beyond. Weaving together collaborative literary partnerships, cross-arts co-creation and an intersectional approach to inclusive and participatory programming, SBWN is a sector change-maker, facilitating necessary conversations around inclusive programming in an effort to address and overcome systemic barriers.

They recommend:

At Least This I Know by Andrés N. Ordorica: Andrés debut collection swaddles you close, tugs longingly at your heartstrings, roots deep, sings fiercely.

Blood Salt Spring by Hannah Lavery: Blood, Salt, Spring doesn't cower, it slices to the ripe heart of things: our sweet yet racist Caledonia, tender and fierce moments of motherhood, family, grief... the ways we've had to carry our intergenerational stories - sometimes weighted, cut jewels rubbing against our skin.

from murky waters, we rise by Etzali Hernandez: Etzali's pamthlet carries the intricate wisdom of love, the power that sprouts from survival and speaking to the violence of this world and the deep steadfastness that comes from loving us - us who are queer, persons of colour, femme and strong.

Honorifics by Cynthia Miller: Cynthia invites you to wonder about a diasporic family history from outer space. What could it be like to permeate the time continuum just to be close to those we love? Through the lens of a telescope or studying jellyfish – Cynthia’s poems pen love.

sikfan glaschu by Sean Wai Keung: Sean writes Glasgow through food, restaurants and cafés. These are not reviews but poems encapsulating our glaschu experiences - this place was built by migrants/therefore it is ours. - Expect to laugh out loud, shed a tear and see yourself sat in Sean’s company as he conjures up the flavours, stories and legacies of our city.

Like A Tree, Walking by Vahni Capildeo: This collection is an exercise in linguistic precision. Every poem reads like a painting, with natural imagery so vivid it jumps off the page.

Where Decay Sleeps by Anna Cheung: Wrestling with hallucinations made real, animal selves creep and settle around the nape of your neck, pierce to the bone - Anna's collection is threaded with the pungency of loss and satisfying slips of gore.

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