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Robert E. Wilson

From Northern Ireland

I'm a writer specialising mainly in humorous poetry and an active member of a writing group tutored and inspired by the Northern Irish poet and author Lynda Tavakoli. I'm an occasional reader at the 'Purely Poetry' evenings in the Crescent Arts Centre, Belfast, have participated in the Bard of Armagh Festival of Humorous Verse and the Hillsborough Literary Festival, County Down. I was a finalist in the Connemara Mussel Festival Poetry Competition 2016, judged by the highly esteemed Irish poet Eamon Grennan and had a poem highly commended in the 2019 Cathal Bui Poetry Competition, Blacklion, County Cavan. Our writing group published its first book, 'Linen Poetry & Prose Anthology' (in partnership with the Irish Linen Centre, Lisburn), in 2014. This anthology is available on Kindle and you can watch and listen to my contribution, a poem entitled 'Millie', performed in character by my fellow writer Geraldine Treacy on YouTube. To date, I have published five collections of humorous poetry and, very recently, a collection of poems based on what might have been the thoughts of Mary, Joseph, a shepherd boy and other major characters in Matthew and Luke's accounts of the Nativity. You'll find some samples of my work on my website, Northern Nib and you can follow me on Twitter @WilsonNib The titles of my books are: 'The Cullybackey Counterfeiters and other Barmy Ballads from Ireland' (illustrated by Aisling Wilson). 'A Bit of Skullduggery and other Barmy Ballads from Ireland' (illustrated by Kathryn Bannister). 'The Scent of Romance and other Barmy Ballads from Ireland' (illustrated by Aisling Wilson). 'The Ballad of Wilf Barraclough and other Barmy Ballads from Ireland's Neighbouring Nations' (illustrated by Kathryn Bannister). 'Risible Rhyme - a Book of Barmy Ballads' (illustrated by Kathryn Bannister). 'Nativity: The Person, The Portrait and The Poem' (illustrated by Kathryn Bannister). All the books are available on Amazon. Thanks for visiting!

What inspires me?

I've had a lifelong interest in creative writing and was drawn towards humorous verse through the poetry of Pam Ayres, Dr Seuss and the singer / songwriter Richard Stilgoe. I was the 'resident poet' in a couple of organisations I worked for, often being called upon to write and recite a verse or two for colleagues retiring, getting married, etc. Then, almost by default, I joined Lynda Tavakoli's writing group. Like others in the group, I've become active in publishing my work, which is mostly humorous but at times leaving us with something to think about.

My best line

"And the click and the clack and the strain on my back..." ('Millie') "It was clear that each was huffin' as he sat and munched his muffin." (The Cullybackey Counterfeiters in 'Team Cullybackey'). "From Queens to 42nd Street they wander in to take a skeet - the artist and the artisan, the curious cosmopolitan, into the Metropolitan Museum of Art." ('Cat')

Top 5 poets

  1. Pam Ayres
  2. Robert Burns
  3. Christina Rossetti