Kate Tough

Kate Tough’s pamphlet, tilt-shift, was runner up in the Callum Macdonald Memorial Award in 2017 and highlighted in the Times Literary Supplement’s list of notable pamphlets. Her slavery remembrance piece, ‘People Made Glasgow’, was selected as a Best Scottish Poem 2016 and turned into a motion in the Scottish parliament. Kate’s novel, Head for the Edge, Keep Walking (Cargo) has had five stars on Amazon since 2014 and a revised second edition, Keep Walking, Rhona Beech, is out with Little, Brown in 2019. She’s received Creative Scotland funding awards for fiction and poetry, and had literature residencies at Cove Park, Vermont Studio Center and Outlandia.


Photo: Colin Mearns, Herald & Times


Scottish/Hungarian Translation Workshop Showcase »

Join us for the first outing of work created at this year's Edwin Morgan Trust translation workshop

Sat 9 March | 13:00 - 14:00 | £4.50/£3.50 | The Town Hall, Queens Gardens, Council Chamber


People Made Glasgow

Shame in our hulls
why else would we drink to incoherence
jump on the heads of passing men
punch our women
tell our children in a checkout queue,
‘Ah hate bank holidays cuz it means
Ah huftae look at youse fir three days no two.’

The whip’s crack
comes a little after
the whip’s stroke.

People Make Glasgow
obese, rotten-mouthed
stroke-felled, emphysemic
aye, an proud ae it.
What we murdered them for
we kill ourselves with.

The whip’s crack
comes a little after
the whip’s stroke.

Brutalised Africans made Glasgow
amazing disgrace, how sweet
the civic amnesia…
mansions without plaques
unrevised street names
no memorial.
So, sign-up for the new city tour—

The Glasgow Merchant Experience!
below deck on the Waverley
100 unclothed families
close-chained to plank beds
30 dead since it left Dunoon!
On the dock, a real live auction!
Feel the excitement as you bid
for your very own slave!


Kate Tough

From tilt-shift (Tapsalteerie, 2016)