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Award-winning poet John Burnside dies aged 69

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The award-winning Scottish poet and novelist John Burnside has died at the age of 69. His publishers Jonathan Cape said the Fife-born writer had died after a short illness.

A former writer-in-residence at Dundee University, he was most recently appointed a professor at the school of English at the University of St Andrews.

His 1992 poetry collection Feast Days won the Geoffrey Faber Memorial Prize, and he later won the Whitbread poetry award for The Asylum Dance in 2000.

His memoir, titled A Lie About My Father, earned him the Saltire Book of the Year in 2006, and he won both the TS Eliot prize and the Forward poetry prize for Black Cat Bone in 2011.

Hannah Westland, publishing director of Jonathan Cape, said: "John Burnside had a particularly miraculous ability to perceive and articulate both the wonders of the natural world and the everyday miracles that make up our lives.

"His work was mysterious but never mystifying, quite the opposite - he made sense of strangeness and to read him was to feel a lighting-up of the darkness.”

 

Background: John Burnside mourns the countryside’s disappeared

 

PHOTOGRAPH: GREG FREEMAN/WRITE OUT LOUD 

 

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