Asha Lul Mohamud Yusuf & Clare Pollard Readings

Asha Lul Mohamud Yusuf & Clare Pollard Readings

‘Sometimes a book reminds us of poetry’s real electric force in the world.  Yusuf is a brilliant young Somali poet living in exile in London, who takes ‘history’s point/to ink a beautiful literature.’… Translated into lapel-grabbing alliterative verse by Clare Pollard, these piercingly direct poems throw open a window onto a war-torn country and its wretchedly displaced people.’ – Jeremy Noel-Tod, The Sunday Times, choosing The Sea-Migrations as his Poetry Book of the Year


Somali poet Asha Lul Mohamud Yusuf and her translator Clare Pollard have been touring The Sea-Migrations (Somali title: Tahriib), starting with a launch reading at Manchester Literature Festival on 7 October 2017.  They also read at London's Southbank Centre on 24 October and gave a workshop and reading at Off the Shelf Festival in Sheffield on 26 October.  The tour continues in 2018 with a reading at Verve Festival in Birmingham on 17 February.

The Sea-Migrations is Asha’s first full-length book of poems, and was published by Bloodaxe Books with The Poetry Translation Centre on 16 November 2017 in a Somali-English dual language edition.  It was Jeremy Noel-Tod's Poetry Book of the Year in The Sunday Times, and was also chosen by Carol Rumens for her selection of the Best poetry of 2017 in The Observer.

‘Performance poetry often dies on the page. But the work of Somalian poet Asha Lul Mohamud Yusuf is an exception, strengthened by a highly craft-conscious, perhaps troubadour-like, oral culture. Though the rhetoric is impassioned and the diction down-to-earth, there are no simplistic politics lectures in her dual-language, Somali-English collection, The Sea-Migrations: Tahriib… One of the tools of classical Somali poetry, I’ve learned, is alliteration, and Pollard has the perfect balance, not too heavy and not inaudibly subtle…’ – Carol Rumens, The Observer (Poetry Books of the Year)


Verve Poetry Festival, Birmingham, Saturday 17 February 2018, 1-2pm

Waterstones, 24-26 High Street, Birmingham  B4 7SL

The Sea-Migrations

Asha Lul and Clare Pollard give a bilingual reading from The Sea-Migrations.

Click here to book.

Clare Pollard will be giving a workshop later that day.


Poetry Translation Centre Workshop with Clare Pollard and Delaina Haslam


See the PTC website for more detailed information on readings, and to listen to podcasts of Asha Lul Mohamud Yusuf and Clare Pollard reading poems.

Click here to see a video featuring extracts from reading tours organised by the PTC in 2017.  Asha Lul and Clare feature at 2.53.

Asha Lul and Clare were interviewed together for Radio 4's Mother Tongue series in August 2017.

[07 December 2017]

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