We open the Saturday afternoon of our bumper poetry weekend with the first of our traditional double bills, though there’s nothing traditional about either Sean O’Brien or Victoria Adukwei Bulley. They are two very different poets who are each concerned with the way our lives are deeply affected by politics and history.
Sean O’Brien was born in London, grew up in Hull and lives in Newcastle upon Tyne. He is a poet, critic, editor, translator, playwright, broadcaster and novelist. His poetry has won many awards, including the T.S. Eliot Prize, the Forward Prize and the E.M. Forster Award. A large selection of his work was published in Collected Poems in 2012. His collection, The Beautiful Librarians, won the 2015 Roehampton Poetry Prize and his ninth, Europa, was shortlisted for the 2018 T.S. Eliot Prize. His new collection, It Says Here, will be published by Picador in April. He is Professor of Creative Writing at Newcastle University.
Victoria Adukwei Bulley is a British-born Ghanaian poet, writer and filmmaker. She is the winner of a 2018 Eric Gregory Award for promising British poets under 30, and has held artistic residencies internationally in the US, Brazil and the V&A Museum in London. She is the recipient of a 2019 TECHNĒ scholarship for doctoral research at Royal Holloway, University of London, and is the director of Mother Tongues, an intergenerational poetry, film and translation project supported by Arts Council England and Autograph. She is a Complete Works Poetry and Instituto Sacatar fellow, and sits on the advisory board of the Poetry Translation Centre. Her debut pamphlet is Girl B.