please recommend small-town Bards
January 26, 2023 12:41 PM   Subscribe

I'm reading a book by an author dubbed the Bard of Akron for his writing about life in Ohio. Can you think of other authors who have been called - by some reasonably notable source - the Bard of Somewhere? Avon is out, I already know about that Bard. The smaller and more obscure the somewhere, the better.

No need to recommend books, songs, etc. titled "The Bard of Whatever." I'm looking specifically for authors (poets count).
posted by moonmilk to Media & Arts (13 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
Les Murray the Australian poet was well known as the Bard of Bunyah or the Bush Bard of Bunyah.
posted by Fiasco da Gama at 12:57 PM on January 26

Julia A Moore, the "Sweet Singer of Michigan"
posted by Pallas Athena at 1:09 PM on January 26

Billy Bragg - the Bard of Barking.
posted by essexjan at 1:17 PM on January 26 [4 favorites]

Bard College, the bard of colleges
posted by likedoomsday at 1:24 PM on January 26 [5 favorites]

I think William Kennedy was described as the Bard of Albany, New York.
posted by scratch at 1:27 PM on January 26 [1 favorite]

John Arlott, the Bard of Basingstoke, article in Wisden (2014).
William Downing Evans, the bard of Newport, here.
William McGonagall, the Bard of Dundee, here and here.
Kipling, the bard of Empire, here.
One reference to Anna Laetitia Barbauld as "the bardess of Stoke Newington" in this book.
There is also a list on Wikipedia, and another slightly different one here, including John Cooper Clarke, the Bard of Salford (documentary).
posted by paduasoy at 1:49 PM on January 26 [1 favorite]

I've never heard John Clare described as the 'Bard of Luton', and a quick internet search suggests that ChatGPT is mixing up John Clare and John Hegley. I also have my suspicions about W.H. Davies as the 'Bard of the Black Country' as he was born in Wales and lived in London. (Oh ChatGPT, you slyboots!)
posted by verstegan at 2:01 PM on January 26 [3 favorites]

Albert R. Frey's Sobriquets and Nicknames (1888) lists several:
posted by offog at 3:11 PM on January 26 [2 favorites]

There is a repertory theatre company called The Bard of Pittsburgh in honor of August Wilson.
posted by the primroses were over at 3:38 PM on January 26 [3 favorites]

Not quite the same thing, but Exeter has a post of Bard of Exeter.
posted by paduasoy at 12:57 AM on January 27

Response by poster: Thank you! We’re ready for our bards book club now.
posted by moonmilk at 4:37 AM on January 27

James Buchanan Elmore, the worst poet ever according to some, was known as The Bard of Alamo. A bit of his poem "The Monon Wreck":
But there they lay on the crimson snow--
Their hearts have ceased to ebb and flow;
Quite as cold as a frozen chunk,
With a lady's heart upon a stump. ...

And yonder in the wreck I see
A man that's pinioned down by the knee,
And hear him calmly for to say:
"Cut, oh, cut my leg away!"
posted by diodotos at 8:02 PM on January 28

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