Douglas Dunn is one of Scotland’s most decorated poets – he has an OBE and a Queen’s Medal – as well as one of Scotland’s most loved poets. He is undoubtedly a major Scottish poet, editor and critic, whose Elegies (1985) – a moving account of his first wife’s death – became a critical and popular success.
His books – including 10 collections of poetry and 2 of short stories, and a translation of Racine’s Andromache – are consistently well reviewed in the national press, while his work has been the object of much academic attention and has been extensively translated (there are editions in French, German, Spanish, Italian, Norwegian, Slovak, Armenian and Japanese, at least).
In this Nothing But The Poem podcast, regular host Sam Tongue and the NBTP group appraise 3 of Dunn’s poems. The poems span almost 5 decades: from Terry Street in 1969 to his most recent collection in 2017.
Dunn himself “once observed that much of poetry ‘depends on the exposure of the heart’, and that ‘there should be no holding back’. This is true of his work, for all its formal restraint. Whether writing of civic society, mourning, or domestic contentment, Douglas Dunn gives us heart-felt witness that ‘life is the best thing that can happen to us’.” – Dr Jules Smith
The poems discussed in the podcast are TAY BRIDGE (1’10) and SECOND OPINION (7’35). Sam also reads a third poem THURSDAY (14’15). The texts for all 3 poems can be found here on the Scottish Poetry Library website.