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Magma showcase: Jen Hadfield

Magma supports new and up-and -coming poets as well as more established ones. Our Showcase gives more space than is usually possible to a poet whose work we feel deserves to be more widely known. For this Showcase we have chosen ]en Hadfield who is currently a picture framer. She won an Eric Gregory Award last year and will be using it to write, read and teach poetry across Canada later this year.

She graduated with distinction from Glasgow University 's Creative Writing course in 2002 , after which she used a bursary from the Scottish Arts Council to write her first manuscript in Shetland and Skye. She is responsible for the artist books published under the name Rogue Seeds. Her website is www.rogueseeds.co .uk

The Gannet and Skerryman

How did Skerryman make Shetland? This way of it shows why a gannet's face is the colour of tobacco-stain and why Skerryman is always cold.

Gannet's greedy. Or some folk, seeing the boats come in with half catches, say he's starving . And Gannet knows the last big halibut is sculling around the ocean floor. He dives, you know how, a falling sword ; screwing down through the water he gapes his beak and snaps it shut. But he snips open the seabed and lava elbows out, and piles out in triple chins, and kicks out - lava on lava until there crowns an island and a shivering mannie: Skerryman, pushed prematurely from the earth 's hot gut, sorrowful , shivering , basalt-black.

magma 28 I 39

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