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About Rory

Rory Waterman was born in Belfast in 1981, and grew up mainly with his mother and grandmother in Lincolnshire, in the East Midlands of England. Since 2012, he has worked at Nottingham Trent University, where he teaches English and leads the MA in Creative Writing. He lives in Nottingham.

Rory's third full-length poetry collection, Sweet Nothings, was published by Carcanet in May 2020. His two other collections are: Tonight the Summer’s Over (Carcanet, 2013), a Poetry Book Society Recommendation, shortlisted for the Seamus Heaney Prize in 2014; and Sarajevo Roses (Carcanet, 2017), shortlisted for the Ledbury Forte Prize 2019. Recent poems of Rory's have been published in the Guardian, Financial Times, TLS, Poetry, Poetry Review, PN Review, New Statesman, and elsewhere.

Rory is also an editor and a critic. He co-runs the poetry pamphlet publisher (and former literary magazine) New Walk, and writes regularly for the TLS, PN Review, Poetry Review, and other publications. He has also written and edited several prose books, mostly about (and/or containing) twentieth-century or contemporary poetry.


Accessing Rory's Work

The Lincolnshire Poetry collection is currently available to view on an appointment only basis. Please contact the Special Collections Librarian for more information and to discuss your research requirements.

Search the Special Collection catalogue by an individual poet’s name or using the word poetry.

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Headshot of Rory Waterman


You can find more information on Rory and his work on his website:-


Rory's Work

One-Parent Families


‘A comprehensive guide’ (Mother & Baby)

Was it? Each dog-ear, thin spine-crack
opens on our time refracted
along the unchartable ways we acted;
and Dad, at court then, to win me back,


but doomed, would’ve bristled at the name
which drew you to it, desperate to learn –
who, clearing out, hands it to Age Concern,
crammed in a bag, for someone the same.


From Sweet Nothings, Carcanet, 2020.