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2023 Aryamati Pamphlet Award Winner

Read a sample here



“Delicate and furious, Anderson’s second collection is a haunting act of worship, of rebellion, and story. Glorious.”
- Joelle Taylor, Poet and Playwright

In her second chapbook, And I Will Make of You a Vowel Sound, Morag Anderson places centre stage an unlikely cast of neglected, exploited, and unsung characters. These poems uncover many of the contradictions of life lived in the female body and bear witness to largely forgotten yet highly personal stories, woman by woman, girl by girl. Confident and assured of voice, she navigates womanhood and its attendant desires and abuses, permitting the reader to embrace the power and vulnerability encased in the female form. Anderson’s delicate choice of words 'unlace restraint’ and take us to the limits of the female body’s potential.


Dr Maura Dooley said:


"Whether considering landscape, a chapter in history, childbirth, child loss, ‘I am living by the tick of a stopped clock’, reimagining the lives of three women important in Robert Burns’s life or relishing the longing in a sense of home, ‘In the bittersweet lull/between two days,/open your mouth/to salted air - //and I will make of you a vowel sound.’ these are poems of delicacy and import. This is a confident, assured voice able to face grief ‘Loss - a thorn that cannot be drawn/by clenched teeth..’ yet still be wry about loss and difference, ‘…me, the rusted iron barb/of a neglected fence,/you, the snagged fur/of a mountain hare.’”


Sample poem:



A Girl Like Me



She’s throwing bricks, splintering the door

of the lad who calls her Pape-Slag-Bitch.


She wears anger like blood—

a constant throb beneath the surface—

seeping through second-hand clothes

slack as grey bandages.


She joins the yellow cushion club,

heard it will help her talk proper,

doesn’t yet know she’ll be maimed by laughter

from the sickle-tongued teacher.


I tell her to rise early, look directly

at the grapefruit sun, declare it no longer bitter,

give shape to rage with pencil on paper.

Silence is a sword that will always injure.


About the Author


Morag Anderson was the 2023 Makar of the Federation of Writers (Scotland). Author of Sin Is Due to Open in A Room Above Kitty’s (Fly on the Wall Press, 2021), Morag’s poetry has appeared in literary journals and anthologies including Butcher’s Dog, Gutter, Popshot Quarterly, The Scotsman, The Darg, and Beyond the Swelkie. The Scottish Poetry Library commissioned Morag to respond to the life and works of Nan Shepherd and Robert Burns.
She was placed in the Oxford Brookes International Poetry Prize, the Edwin Morgan Trust Poetry Competition, the Scottish Poetry Library’s Best Scottish Poems, and named Over the Edge Poet of the Year and twice shortlisted for the prestigious Bridport Prize. She collaborated with three other poets on How Bright the Wings Drive Us which won the Dreich Alliance Chapbook Competition.
She was featured poet at the Phosphorescence Poetry Reading Series, produced by the Emily Dickinson Museum, and the Yehuda Amichai International Poetry Festival in Galway.
X: @morag_caimbeul

And I Will Make of You a Vowel Sound by Morag Anderson


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