Soutar, William

(1898-1943)
   Scottish poet, born in Perth, who joined the Royal Navy in 1916 and served in the Atlantic and the North Sea. In 1919 he started a medical degree at Edinburgh University, but transferred to English, and graduated in 1923. He suffered from an incurable spinal disease, which was operated on in 1930, and he was confined to bed for the rest of his life. His father adapted a downstairs room for William, overlooking the back garden, where he wrote poetry and an extensive journal and entertained several hundred friends in the course of a year. Many of his visitors were writers and his room became a center for the Scottish literary renaissance. Diagnosed with tuberculosis in July 1943, he began a new volume of his journal, which he entitled The Diary of a Dying Man. Some of his publications: Seeds in the Wind, 1933. Poems in Scots, 1935. Brief Words, 1935. Riddles in Scots, 1937. The Expectant Silence, 1944. Some of his poems: "A Hint o' Snow," "A Riddle," "An Alphabet for Caledonian Bairns," "Among High Hills," "The Auld House," "The Three Puddocks," "Wait for the Hour."
   Sources: Biograhy of William Soutar: BBC, Writing Scotland. Scotland's Languages (http://www.bbc.co.uk/scotland/arts/writingscotland/writers/william_soutar/). Encyclopædia Britannica Ultimate Reference Suite DVD, 2006. Oldpoetry (www.oldpoetry.com). Poems of the Scottish Hills: An Antholog y. Hamish Brown, ed. Aberdeen University Press, 1982. Scottish Authors, William Soutar (http://www.slainte.org.uk/scotauth/soutadsw.htm). The Columbia Granger's Index to Poetry. 11th ed. The Columbia Granger's World of Poetry, Columbia University Press, 2005 (http://www.columbiagrangers.org). The Faber Book of Vernacular Verse. Tom Paulin. Faber and Faber, 1990. The New British Poets: An Anthology. Kenneth Rexroth, ed. New Directions, 1949. The Oxford Book of Scottish Verse, John MacQueen and Tom Scott, eds. Oxford University Press, 1966. The Oxford Companion to English Literature. 6th edition. Margaret Drabble, ed. Oxford University Press, 2000.

British and Irish poets. A biographical dictionary. . 2015.

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