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Credit Paul Samuel White The City Poet pictured holding a giant clothes peg and a small plastic brain

The City Poet

In 2016, the Mayor appointed Bristol’s first City Poet, tasked with capturing the stories of the city and imagining different futures.

The City Poet, who holds the post for two years, creates 10 poems during their time and seeks to engage local communities and young people with poetry.

The role of city poet is managed by Bristol Ideas, in association with the Mayor’s Office.

Caleb Parkin has held the current position since June 2020.

Parkin is a poet, performer, facilitator and film-maker, with a particular passion for inclusive environmentalism, wellbeing, arts, culture and heritage, and LGBT+ pride. His poems have been published widely in journals including ‘Poetry Review’, ‘The Rialto’, ‘Butcher’s Dog’, ‘Under the Radar’, ‘Coast to Coast to Coast’, ‘Envoi’, ‘Magma’, in Bristol 247, and online.

You can read past poetry commissions – as well as news of city poet activities – on the Bristol Ideas City Poet page. This also includes past commissions, such as City of Hope from Vanessa Kisuule, City Poet 2018-2020.