Unfortunately, I believe we have ended up with the wrong first woman Poet Laureate. Much as I admire some of Carol Ann Duffy's poetry, though listing geographical regions now seems to have become her trade mark, her erstwhile partner, Jackie Kay, would have been a much better choice. Her writing is superb, and, in addition, she brings her audience along with her.
I saw Jackie Kay at the Beverley Literature Festival last week. This is the third time I have seen her in the flesh (I have also heard her on the radio) and on each occasion she engages; entertains; makes me think and question; and drags her listeners through all manner of emotions. Have you heard CAD recite her poetry? It always sounds like a funeral dirge.
Jackie Kay, mixed race, adopted into a white family from Glasgow, speaks from not only being a lesbian woman, but also from a sense of being between cultures. Now she would have made an inspiring, powerful and exciting Laureate for our modern Britain.