National Poetry Day 2006:
Identity

"Nothing matters more than who we are in the world, where we have been and where we are going. The issue of identity is at the heart of our society and involves everyone." Virtual Poet-in-Residence, Jackie Kay

The 2006 National Poetry Day theme, 'Identity', invites us to explore through poetry one of the crucial issues and talking points in today's culture. What is identity? How do we develop it? How do we define it? And how are we defined by it?

Jackie Kay: 'Virtual' Poet in Residence

Poet Jackie Kay was the Poetry Society's 'virtual' poet in residence in the run up to National Poetry Day. She provided a regular online diary of her thoughts on identity as well as highlighting some of the more inspiring events and activities taking place around the UK.

Jackie Kay for a Day

To celebrate National Poetry Day and the theme of 'Identity', the Poetry Society and poet Jackie Kay offered secondary schools all around the country the chance to win a day with one of Britain's most popular poets and explore through poetry what identity means. 

Jackie Kay is an experienced voice on the issues of identity. She was born in Edinburgh, Scotland in 1961 to a Scottish mother and a Nigerian father. She was adopted by a white couple at birth and was brought up in Glasgow. Her first collection of poetry was The Adoption Papers (1991). Her other collections include Other Lovers (1993) and Off Colour (1998). Her first novel, Trumpet, was published in 1998. Her latest collection of poetry is Life Mask (2005).