The Writers of Wales Database


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Ruth Bidgood_Copyright Liz Fleming WilliamsBorn in Seven Sisters, Glamorgan, Ruth was educated in Port Talbot before reading English at Oxford University. During World War II, she served as a Wren in the Middle East. She was sub-editor of Chambers' Encyclopedia. After many years in Surrey, Ruth returned to Wales. She settled in Abergwesyn where she started to write poems and document local history.

Her work has been published in various journals and as bound collections. Her latest, entitled Time Being, was published by Seren and is a Poetry Book Society Recommendation. Not Without Homage (Christopher Davies, 1975) received a Welsh Arts Council award; and both Selected Poems (Seren, 1992) and The Fluent Moment (Seren, 1996) were shortlisted for the Welsh Arts Council Book of the Year Award in 1993 and 1997. Her New and Selected Poems (Seren, 2004) was shortlisted for the Roland Mathias Prize in 2005 and Time Being (Seren, 2009) won the Roland Mathias Prize for 2011. Ruth is a Fellow of Academi.

The image of Ruth above is copyright to Liz Fleming-Williams

Selected Publications:
The Given Time (Christopher Davies, 1972)
Not Without Homage (Christopher Davies, 1975)
The Print of Miracle (Gomer, 1978)
Lighting Candles: New and Selected Poems (Seren, 1982)
Kindred (Seren, 1986)
Selected Poems (Seren, 1992)
The Fluent Moment (Seren, 1996)
Singing to Wolves (Seren, 2000)
New and Selected Poems (Seren, 2004)
Symbols of Plenty: Selection of Longer Poems (Canterbury Press Norwich, 2006)
Hearing Voices (Cinnamon, 2008)
Time Being (Seren, 2009)
Above the Forests (Cinnamon, 2012)

Bwlch Y Ddau Faen: Abergwesyn (Cyfres Y Man A’r Lle/Places S.) (Gwasg Gregynog, 1997)
Parishes of the Buzzard (Alun Books, 2000)


Time Being (Seren, 2009)

Time BeingTime Being is a Poetry Book Society Recommendation and the poet's 12th collection in a career that spans almost 40 years. Ruth Bidgood avoids sentimentality but not sentiment: an observation can engender joy or sorrow or fear uncluttered by irony. Her descriptions are sharp and memorable, tending to a cool accuracy.

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Above the Forests (Cinnamon, 2012)

Whether dealing with Welsh physical landscape or the social landscape, or ranging over speculative questions of science, the precision of thought and language in these poems is always razor sharp; a lyricism that pushes at the boundaries of life.

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