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    Today is National Poetry Day and its theme is "Heroes and Heroines"...

    And talking of poetic heroes, last night Don Paterson won the 2009 Forward poetry prize. And his fellow Faber poet, Emma Jones, picked up the £5,000 Felix Dennis Prize Best First Collection for her "elliptical and visionary" debut The Striped World.

    Sixteen years after he debuted on the poetry scene with the acclaimed collection Nil Nil, Don Paterson has triumphed over one of the strongest poetry shortlists in years to take the Forward prize for best collection with Rain, a work which judges said showed the Scottish poet's "total mastery of his art".

    Paterson, 45, beat a line-up of acclaimed poets including Peter Porter, Sharon Olds and Glyn Maxwell to win the £10,000 award for Rain, a continuation of his personal and philosophical exploration of the world around him (more...)

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