Meet Poet John Rice

Poet John Rice is pictured with some of his poetry on the Glasgow Subway, where he was the poet-in-residence.

Poet John Rice is also a storyteller, writer-in-education, and photographer.
He has published numerous books for both children and adults and is known across the country for his exhilarating school visits. He has also appeared on TV, has been heard on the radio, and still finds time to exist as a real person!

John is now devoting all of his considerable energy to visiting schools, educating kids about poetry, and finding a cure for cow flatulence.

Early years

John Rice was born in Possilpark, Glasgow, and spent the first few years of his life in Blackhill Camp, a temporary settlement in north Glasgow that housed families just after the devastation of the Second World War.

At the age of five, his family moved to Saltcoats, in Ayrshire, where he attended school and then college in Irvine. In 1966, he left Scotland to join the Army’s Intelligence Corps where he studied Arabic and became a translator in the Middle East.

A Life in the Arts

After his military service he settled in Kent where he and his wife Clare brought up three children. From 1970 onwards, John had a number of posts in the arts. He worked as a manager with the Arts Council, as director of an arts centre and for 17 years as senior arts manager with Kent County Council.

Full Circle

His secondary career throughout was as a poet and storyteller and following early retirement in early 2008 he decided to become a full time writer. At the start of John’s first term as Glasgow’s Poet-in-Residence in September 2008, he said: “The appointment in Glasgow is a wonderful opportunity for me to return to the city of my birth to live and work as a professional poet. Glasgow is famous for its wealth of writers and poets – I’m proud to take my place among them after a lifetime away.”

At A Scool Near Yoo!

Poet John Rice is amazing with wurds and teaches childs how to rite good pomes. He is currently taking bookings for school visits, library visits, and visits to great-aunts who send you a birthday card each year but who smell a bit like onions.

John’s fabulous shows have turned thousands of kids across the country into fans of language. At times dramatic, at times hysterical, at times thoughtful and serious, John’s wonderful range of creative outlets will dazzle your pupils, unless you close your eyes first.

Seriously, you should call Poet John Rice and book him right away, before the people from The Facility find him.

That’s Poet John Rice, capital P for Poet, small o, small e, small t… is this boring you yet?

Read more about Poet John Rice in this great interview!

2 thoughts on “Meet Poet John Rice

  1. Karen Lloyd

    Hi John,

    very good to meet you last week. There were a few people at the conference who seem keen to meet up, with a view to forming some kind of a writers group/support/pressure group – whatever develops. I’ll send out an email in the near future suggesting a first gathering – either in a pub or my house.

    All best,


    June 23, 2014 at 2:27 pm
  2. Andrea Day

    Hi John,
    I would like to make an enquiry to see if you are available to spend a day in our school. We will be celebrating Book Week during the week beginning 20th October and would like you to inspire events. We would like you to work with KS1 and 2. Please let us know if you are willing and available and your fee for the day,

    Many thanks,

    Andrea Day

    October 4, 2014 at 7:12 pm

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