Stenness Poetry Day

Stenness Poetry Day

To mark World Poetry Day 2022, we celebrate the latest publication from our in-house small press, Abersee.

Rammo in Stenness is the first collection from a fresh and powerful new voice in Orkney writing, Ingrid Leonard. Ingrid was born and raised in Stenness, and currently lives in Lithuania. She's had poems published in several magazines and anthologies, and is currently studying for a PhD in Creative Writing at Aberdeen University.

Alison Miller, the current Scots Scriever, praised the booklet in The Orcadian:

'Ingrid Leonard's poetry arises from the core of female experience - a longing for, and the realisation of the dangers of, sexual freedom; ambivalence about traditional women's roles that both attract and repel [...] The poet closely identifies with this land; she is part of it, yet apart: "Livan ootside o this netral order o things." And it is this balancing of the strong pull of the land and the Orkney community have for her, along with her resistance to it, that gives the collection much of its power. That and the fact that the trials of femaleness from youth to middle age are expressed in a robust Orcadian [...] that grounds the experience and brings it home."

As well as dealing with the challenges of life, Ingrid is particularly good at capturing moments of youthful euphoria, as in this poem about Voar - springtime - a celebration of the opening up of a life, a world:


I gid in me own time’s voar among

a guid skrythe, aipsan atween doors

fae wan student flat tae anither. I’d shower

wi thowts o voices that teemed thi air,

kennan we’d soon be mullan ower

music or Voltaire, guys who widna luk

at wir eyes when they spokk, steam risan

fae hot cups. Is their a better wak than

thi wan ye mak tae see yer freends?

Nights in May wi family steyan, pizza

for tea an home by nine. Whar turns in

when thi dark’s a blip an thi day begs

daean at a lick, I hear a hunder thoosand

yamils sayan hii! Mak use o yer legs.

Rammo in Stenness is an A5 sized, 36 page, soft-cover booklet. It was published on the very appropriate date of 25th January in an edition of 300. It can be bought from Stromness Books & Prints, and of course from us, here.

Or neighbours in Kirkness & Gorie have also written about Ingrid's poems, here.