Hamish Henderson

Collected Poems

Hamish Henderson

Date Published :
May 2020
Publisher :
Editor :
Corey Gibson
Format Available    QuantityPrice
Binding : Hardback
ISBN : 9781846974861
Pages : 432
Dimensions : 8.65 X 5.6 inches
Stock Status : In stock
Binding : Paperback
ISBN : 9781846975530
Pages : 416
Dimensions : 8.45 X 5.3 inches
Stock Status : In stock


Hailed by some as the most important Scottish poet since Burns, Hamish Henderson lived an epic life against the backdrop of some of the defining social, political and cultural battles – both national and international – of the twentieth century. A soldier, academic, folklorist, political activist, songwriter, translator and poet, he was a seminal figure in the Scottish folk revival and literary renaissance. His humanist legacy lives on in all of these spheres, but it is perhaps through his poetry that we may experience, most keenly, the ‘method in his magic.’ In every verse and lyric we catch glimpses of a brilliant, complex and highly original mind, whilst also developing a fuller understanding of Henderson’s lifelong mission to ‘make poetry become people.’

Published to celebrate the centenary of the birth of Hamish Henderson, this collected poems is the first since the poet’s death and makes available, for the first time, new material from the archive. The book opens with Freedom Becomes People, first published in Chapman 42, and reproduces, in full, his Ballads of World War II and Elegies for the Dead in Cyrenaica. This volume pushes at the boundaries between high modernist poetics and popular folk song; between the profound and profane; between works of individual and collective endeavour and between the poet and his purpose.

About The Author

Corey Gibson is Lecturer in Twentieth-Century Scottish Literature at the University of Glasgow. He is the author of The Voice of the People: Hamish Henderson and Scottish Cultural Politics (Edinburgh University Press, 2015). His writing and research is focused on the radical literary imagination in Scotland.


Admired by artists and politicians as diverse as Bob Dylan and Nelson Mandela, Henderson is the subject of a handsome edition of Collected Poems'

- Scotsman

Both rattle-bag and monument, it celebrates the sheer variety and social zest of Henderson’s songs and poems, from highly wrought lyrics to soldiering songs, to comic squibs. …Building on the work of earlier editors, it’s a landmark achievement that fully restores impish intellectualist and bawdy check – and yes, highly questionable language – to our slightly sainted image of Henderson'

- The Bottle Imp (Best Scottish Books, 2019)

Reveals one of Scotland’s best-loved poets in a completely new light'

- Times

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