David was born in Inverness. He spent his youth in Balintore, Easter Ross, before moving to Glasgow in 2012. He has been a potter, factory worker, tree planter, farm roguer, fesitval assistant and currently works as a screen printer. Throughout all of this, he has always been a poet.
His work is rooted in the rural living of his home and explores themes of heritage, nostalgia, spirituality, mental health and our relationship to the land and each other.
He has published four pamphlets of poetry: Ribbons and Rust, Black Box, Scenes from a God Movie and Star Muck Bourach. He has performed at many events, including the Edinburgh Book Festival, Scottish Poetry Library, AyeWrite!, The Poetry Club, Poetry at Inn Deep, Last Monday, the London Enemies project and Tell it Slant. His work has been displayed at StAnza poetry festival.
He has been published widely online and in print, with work appearing in Butcher's Dog, Bath Magg, The Dark Horse, New Writing Scotland, One Hand Clapping and The Honest Ulsterman, amongst others.
He was the winner of the 10th Ó Bhéal Five Words International Poetry Competition for his poem 'Lighthouse / Mother', was awarded joint first place in the 2022 Neil Gunn Writing Competition, and has been shortlisted for both a New Writers Award and the Edwin Morgan Award. He placed second in the 2020 Gloucestershire Open Poetry Competition and his poem 'Estimations' was commended in the FWS Vernal Equinox Competition the same year. He was a mentee of the 2018/19 Clydebuilt poetry scheme and holds a Masters in Creative Writing from the University of Glasgow. He is also the recipient of a Dewar Arts Award and placed second in the 2016 Alistair Buchan prize. He was co-editor of Under, an anthology of poetry and prose, and has delivered a range of workshops and talks across Scotland. Two of his poems have been nominated for Best of Net.
This website is a showcase of David’s work, for good or ill. If you are interested in booking him for a gig, workshop or a commissioned poem, you can get in touch via the contact page.
“The experience of reading David's poems is utterly absorbing. His words - always tender, always astute, always attuned to the world’s variety - probe at mysteries without untangling them. There’s such delicate music here. I leave his poems with more questions ringing in my ears - and more emotions bursting within me - than I started. You couldn’t ask for anything else in a writer. “
- Colin Herd, University of Glasgow/Poet
“David is a poet whose fine craft carries the authenticity of his voice and poignancy of his memories to the reader over rising seas. I think of the boat builder polishing slats of golden wood as he forms lines of poetry in his mouth and mind. Prepare to be rocked gently, swept away, buoyed up and sung to from shore to shore.”
- JL Williams, Poet