Irregularities by William Beattie Smith


Bill Smith has generously allowed us to sell copies of his poetry to raise funds for blood cancer research.


This book of poetry has been written by leukaemia patient William Beattie Smith.

Bill Smith is a public policy analyst and writer from Belfast. During the 30 years of Northern Ireland’s Troubles he worked with the voluntary and community sector to sustain peace through his activities as a social policymaker. In 2011, the US Institute of Peace published his assessment of British policies on the conflict, From Violence to Powersharing.

This is his first printed volume of poems. They reflect his belief that the civilising virtues of the humanities are essential to the craft of good governance. Many of them catch a fleeting sensation, emotion or event: a one-off irregularity. The subject matter ranges from dogs to death.

On dying, Smith writes, “In February 2021 my doctors told me I had acute leukemia: they keep me alive with chemotherapy and blood transfusions, and I am grateful to them for every extra day. This revelation gave a new urgency to my creative work. After decades of writing about the outer world of government, the time had come to explore my inner landscape and talk to the beings who live there.”