Wayne Price

Wayne Price

Wayne Price was born in south Wales but has lived and worked in Scotland since 1987


His short stories and poems have been widely published and won many awards. His debut story collection, Furnace (Freight, 2012), was shortlisted for the Saltire Scottish First Book of the Year and longlisted for the Frank O'Connor Award. His first novel, Mercy Seat, was published in 2015. He was a finalist in the Manchester Poetry Competition in both 2013 and 2014. He teaches literature and creative writing at the University of Aberdeen.



''A remarkable new poet who is intelligent, insightful, imaginative and utterly assured.' – Carol Ann Duffy on Wayne's collection, Fossil Record


‘The opening out [...] is like a discovery.[...] It is like a release, a vision that appears all by itself.’ – George Szirtes 


‘‘The Secret’ is a perfect poem. [...] Its precision of language, exactitude of image, felicity of phrasing and dry, laconic humour are all hugely impressive.’ – Paul Durcan


‘‘Loyalties’ is at once marvellously metaphysical (almost ‘Stevensonian’ in the opening stanza) and down-to-earth. A beautifully contrived bitter-sweet elegiac love-poem’. – Paul Durcan 


'Fossil Record is the most impressive first small collection I have read for years. The delicate melancholy of these 20 beautiful poems remains to haunt me. Whole lines and images linger. The poet’s boyhood experience swims under the surface of the man like trout in a stream. This is the music of easy, natural language transfiguring the ordinary. It reads like thought. I can’t wait for a full collection from this poet.' – Gillian Clarke


Review of Wayne Price ‘s Fossil Record 

in London Grip: http://londongrip.co.uk/2015/11/london-grip-poetry-review-price-deane/
in Sabotage Reviews: http://sabotagereviews.com/2016/02/24/fossil-record-by-wayne-price/ 


Fossil Record


Wind was stammering at the windows all night.

If I slept at all it was a half-sleep

filled with thoughts that halved into dreams

and back again. The first cells divided

identically, for millions of years.

Millions of years before difference began.


Slow learning life. Slower than stone. I would

like a sleep as deep as those first fractal

animals, colourless, rooted in the dark

of empty oceans, carbon-paper thin.


Everything in the wind says give me time,

I can change: minerals in the rocks and streams;

proteins in warm seas; memories; children

who will remind us they never asked to be born.


Wayne Price on his work

I’ve been writing poetry and fiction all my adult life, but for many years I only ever sent short stories out for publication. Around ten years ago that changed, not for any one reason I can put my finger on, and I began ‘trying out’ my poems in various competitions and journals. I think the change of heart had something to do with finally finding a balance in my voice between a lyrical impulse and a story-telling instinct to stay grounded and outward looking. Maybe because I was so busy writing short stories, I fell into the trap of relegating my poetry to a more or less private sphere, and it was probably a growing narrative impulse in my poems that triggered a change and made me more confident that they could speak meaningfully to other people.

Major influences are a rattle bag: classical Chinese poetry via Arthur Waley and, later, Rexroth, has been one of the most all-pervasive, I think. Herbert, John Clare, Stevie Smith, Bishop and Frost would be up there too, and late W.S. Graham.

Titles by this author

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