Shay the Poet, Seamus Kelly, is a Rochdale based Irish / English poet originally from the midlands. In 2015 Seamus took the plunge giving up his full time job in sustainable travel to become a professional poet and writer.
Shay the Poet can also be found at:
@Shaythepoet – on Twitter
shaycycles – on Facebook
shaycycles – on Pinterest
shaythepoet – on Instagram
Seamus can be found performing and running writing and poetry workshops around the North West of England and occasionally further afield and offers a range or ready made or bespoke sessions details of which can be found HERE.
Having led Weaving Words, Rochdale’s creative writing group, for 10 years he has performed his work across greater Manchester and beyond including a high profile performance at the 2015 Eroica Britannia Festival in Derbyshire (a festival of all things vintage and cycling) and having been invited back brought new material to appreciative audiences at the 2016 and 2017 festivals. Seamus has facilitated and delivered workshops on a wide range of topics including how to find inspiration, the technicalities of writing and a series of high-speed workshops at the Rochdale Literature and Ideas Festival in 2013. His workshop clients include schools, libraries, creative writing groups and reading groups.
Seamus was the originator and one of the commissioned poets for Connect2 Poetry, launched in 2013 that grew from Seamus’ idea for a poetry trail around Rochdale’s extensive Connect2 network of walking and cycling routes. With support from Rochdale Library Service and Cartwheel arts a total of 35 poems were commissioned to be featured on plaques on the routes, an interactive website and phone app.
Along with a storyteller, visual artist and a songwriter Seamus recently completed work as the resident poet on the Stories We Could Tell project (runner up in the Rochdale Diversity Awards 2016); working with young people including asylum seekers, young people in care and young people with mental health issues to empower them whilst developing skills and confidence. In 2017 the successful project will work with more young people and Seamus will again be the resident poet as well as supporting other writing and technical aspects of the programme.
As an environmentalist, with a degree in Ecology to go alongside an HND in Graphic Design and a Post Graduate Certificate in Education, 20 years in IT support, a creative career, a few years of teaching and six years promoting cycling Seamus is a rare combination of scientist and creative; prone perhaps to thinking (and talking) too much. He currently teaches 2 days a week working with young people who have severe social and behavioural issues, including young people in care and those on the autistic scale, at a special needs school in Stockport.
He produced his first short collection of poetry “Thinking Too Much” in 2015 with poems inviting the reader to think about life, family, nature, politics, justice, peace and society – the book can be purchased using the links HERE.
Prominent Yorkshire poet James Nash said of Thinking Too Much “Seamus Kelly’s poetry is the poetry of journeys and places. Sometimes that place is the past and sometimes it is where nature and people intersect. But always it is written with a kind of passionate precision, and with great humanity”