Rab Wilson was born in the Ayrshire village of New Cumnock in 1960. After an engineering apprenticeship with the National Coal Board he left the pits following the miner’s strike of 1984-5 to become a psychiatric nurse.
His first main published work was his version in Scots of the famous medieval Persian work The Ruba’iyat of Omar Khayyam; this was followed by three collections of his own poetry ‘chiefly in the Scots language’. He collaborated with the artist Hugh Bryden in adaptations of Horace’s satires in Scots, and with Calum Colvin in a book of responses to Robert Burns. He has edited an anthology of contemporary poetry from Dumfries and Galloway writers; and written a series of poems as the first James Hogg Creative Resident.
Rab Wilson was on the Parliamentary Working Group on the Scots Language, 2009-2010, and is the Scriever in Residence for the National Trust for Scotland.