Jim Carruth Introduces… Padraig Regan and Sam Buchan-Watts
Sam Buchan-Watts’ debut collection, Path Through Wood, considers the capacity contemporary lyric poetry has to reflect social change. The many ethical dilemmas these poems enact listen in to the noise which society makes to distract itself – from carceral space to questions of asylum, masculinity and the boundaries of aesthetic play. Described by the Guardian as a ‘sceptical, serious, versatile writer’, Buchan-Watts variously inhabits poetic form, exposing the interplay of sound, sense and desire. Returning repeatedly to the figure of a vulnerable boy approaching the thicket of adolescence, these are poems that are listening in when they’re not supposed to, distracted when they should be listening in, and finding secret listeners behind the arras. In this disquieting terrain we must hold ourselves to account for what we hear and what we make of what we hear.
The poems of Padraig Regan’s Some Integrity (Winner of the Clarissa Luard Prize 2021) bring something new to the Irish lyric tradition. Queerness is a way of looking, a perspective, grounded in an awareness of the porous and provisional nature of our bodies. The book’s social encounters and exchanges, its responses to the work of artists, its figures in a landscape, and its considerations of food and desire, work as capsule narratives and as an exhilarating extension of that lyric tradition.
This event takes place at the Mitchell Library, Glasgow, as part of Aye Write festival. Tickets available here: