Bed and Breakfast Gallery Music

Entrance to The Secret Garden Gallery

International poetry at Castlekirk

Billed as the Transatlantic Session, the poetry reading at the Secret garden gallery, better known perhaps as Castlekirk on 10th May, will be less Aly Bain, Phil Cunningham , Jerry Douglas, Alison Krauss and more Jason Watts and David Underdown , Susan Davis and James McMichael.

This promises to be a rich poetical fare as enterprising potter and gallery owner Vicki Hudson of Castlekirk, Lochranza, hosts a poetry reading of local and west coast American poetry. The visiting poets, who have visited before, wanted to hear something of the authentic poetic Arran voice and in their turn will present voices and subjects quite remote to Lochranza Bay and the Newton Shore. What will prove as interesting as the diversity of voice and subject is the common ground that poets from Scotland and America will inhabit. And if only West Coasts then that should be equally as insightful. Poetry lovers on the island wait with fevered anticipation.

Of James Mcmichael the poet C.K. Williams has said: "James McMichael has for many years been one of our ( American) most innovative poets, with a broad thematic range, and a passionate commitment to the truths of life and art. His poems are at once as capacious as novels, formally inventive, and emotionally profound."

James Mcmichael is professor of English and comparative literature in the University of California at Irvine He is author of Capacity (2006) and also in 2006 was a finalist in the National Book Award in poetry. About his book-length poem, Four Good Things, Robert Pinsky wrote: "One of the great American poems. Beautiful and profound, its subject is the modern conundrum of the human ability to plan, invent and construct, and the stifling, destructive consequences."

The Cauliflower

Her words clot in his head.
He presses himself to remember
And feels the skin peel back,
The skull bleach, crack, fall away.
All that's left of him is the brain,
Its tissue knotting up to shade him,
The pain of its light pulsing
How to move, how to move.

Susan Davis was born in Louisiana and teaches and coordinates undergraduate creative writing at the University of California, Irvine. Her poem ‘ The Season begins in a waiting room’ was chosen for the 2010 Rebecca Lard poetry Award and her poems have appeared in Alaska Quarterly Review, Pequod and Cincinatti Review.

She took her time.
By lantern-light, she washed each finger,
cleaning underneath the nail with
a splinter sheathed in cotton.
She started once to wrap him in a blanket.
He was so cold.
She found a mole on his hip
she never knew was there.
I thought he would have liked
to have her find the mole like this
when he was still alive.

(from Undertaking)

It is a privilege to have poets of such standing visit and read on Arran. No less exciting will be the hosting poets. local voices increasingly becoming more familiar and more assured as Arran poetry continues to gain a foothold in Scottish verse. David Underdown who published Timelines last year, Jason Watts who with Tim Pomeroy jointly published Their Proper Names in 2007 and Cicely Gill who has published in among others Chapman and an anthology of Scottish Poetry( Association of Scottish Literary Studies Glasgow Uni.) will all be reading. There will be no open floor session and refreshments will be available at the interval. Publications and individual poems will be available and chat with the poets after the reading positivley encouraged. All are welcome. Thursday 10th May 8.00- 10.30 pm.

Click here to download the flyer or phone Vicki on 830202 for more details.

Porch leading into Gallery

Corridor entrance to Gallery from Castlekirk

Gallery Interior

Gallery Interior

The Secret Garden Gallery, on the ground floor of Castlekirk Arthouse, shows work from around Europe and also some of our local artists in group or solo exhibitions. We have hosted various music events ,a list of some of the musicians who've performed can be seen on our music pages, conferences and even a wedding service.
This page will be regularly updated to include news about the artists and exhibitions elsewhere.


Lochranza, Isle of Arran, Scotland, KA27 8HL
Tel : +44 1770 830202 (outside the UK) 01770 830 202 (from UK)e-mail: