Roy's ProfileRoy McFarlane

Saturday 10 June 2023
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Roy Mcfarlane

Roy was born in Birmingham and now living in the Black Country. He has held the role of Birmingham Poet Laureate and Starbuck Poet in Residence.
His writing has appeared in magazines, Under the Radar, The Reader, The Cannon's Mouth and The Undertow Review. His poems have been included in anthologies, Out of Bounds (Bloodaxe 2012) and he's the co-editor and writer for Celebrate Wha? (Smokestack 2011).

He's also written a play For the Love of Auset which premiered at The Drum, Birmingham, June 2007 and his short story Conversation with an Ant has also been published in Original Skin.

He's presently performer in residence for Warwickshire Poetry Voices and is looking forward to his debut collection Beginning with your last breath to be published by Nine Arches Press in September 2016.


Roy in a former life was a qualified Community, Youth and Play worker applying his trade through the 90's as a Detached Youth Worker and Project Manager in Birmingham and the surrounding areas. His work as a community worker led him to the forefront of anti-racism work during the 00's delivering and developing anti-racism training across Birmingham, working for Birmingham Partnership against Racial Harassment and later on for the Birmingham City Council.

Roy has several years' experience within the world of poetry; crossing over and collaborating with the world of theatre, working along with musicians and dancers, running workshops, projects and training in many different settings, giving young people and adults the knowledge and skills to be the poets and performers of today and tomorrow.

Roy has developed Mentoring/ Arts scheme helping young people to be inspired, to promote confidence and give opportunities for qualifications and future employment. Roy has also developed numerous arts and education packages and tailored workshops to be used in schools, communities and events.

Please also see for Roy's activities in Birmingham


I remember being introduced to Langston Hughes The Negro Speaks of Rivers which blew my mind, inspired me to write words that spoke of my world, my journey, my being but more importantly the profound possibilities of sculpturing or painting with words.

I'm constantly in conversation with any format of art, past and present. Art which proposes a truth through what is seen and what is lived; often leading to truths that reflect on the micro and macro aspects of the world around us.
I write for the joy and love of it, the spark that troubles you in the midnight hour, the thought that follows you in a dream, the ache that wakes you up, the inspiration that makes you write on the margins of a newspaper; it's all part of the reason for writing poetry.