Tag Archives: Ross Sutherland poet

Ross Sutherland’s Twelve Nudes

  
 
Ross Sutherland was born in Edinburgh in 1979. A former lecturer in electronic literature at Liverpool John Moore’s University, Ross works as a freelance journalist and tutor in creative writing. He is a member of live literature collective Aisle 16. His first collection, Things To Do Before You Leave Town (Penned in the Margins), was published in 2009.
 
 
 

  
 
In this limited edition, signed mini-book, Ross Sutherland presents the poem as honed, stripped and exposed. With trademark wit, Twelve Nudes (Penned in the Margins, 2010) interrogates the failures of love, exploding the dynamics of text, voice and body. In this elegant but uneasy satire, ‘to be naked is to speak without footnotes’.
 
Each book is packaged in a gold cellophane bag and comes with a special gift.
 
 
 
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Our fear of public speaking began in childhood, when public speakers burst into our living rooms and murdered our families.
 
Those articulate bastards left us with nothing, just a handful of cue-cards escaping across spearmint lawns:
 
1.       INTRODUCTION / QUOTE FROM LEFEBVRE
          MY PROFESSIONAL CAPACITY AS ARCHIVIST
          IMAGINARY ADVICE
 
8.       FATHER, OPINIONS OF WAITERS
          NON-HUMANS (FORMATIVE EXPERIENCES)
          ON ANSWERING PHONE: “A LEADEN CRAPULENCE”
 
14.     1989: THE ENCROACHING THREAT
          POLICE MELODRAMAS AT 90°
          “INTO THE GLITTERING PALACE OF TEARS”
 
How we swore vengeance on those public speakers! Quiet, incoherent vengeance; the best kind, muttered inside cupboards.
 
Ever so often we attempted to tell people the story of our lives, only to discover that they had already heard it, with smarter punch-lines and less insincere flippancy. Word came that someone had sold the TV rights to our fear of wasps.
 
In nightmares the public speakers appeared to us as demonic, fifty-foot rainbows. “We shall now say a few words on emptiness,” they chimed, their mouths descending like Tetris onto our beds, finishing our sentences.
 
We followed them through the periodicals, hating them so. Rain fell in perfect fallacy onto their palladiums. “My plus-one is this sniper rifle,” we said in unison.
 
174.     BACKBURNER ISSUES
            PARTIAL ACQUAINTANCES
            “ALL’S WELL THAT ENDS WELL” (JOKE)
 
Behind the red curtain we could hear them rushing about, becoming more and more eloquent as their entrance approached.
 
We sat there in silence, frantically inventing opinions that our biographers had no use for. But it was too late. They were already imagining us naked.
 
 
from Twelve Nudes (Penned in the Margins, 2010).
 
Order Twelve Nudes.
 
Visit Ross Sutherland’s blog.
 
 
 

  

Ross Sutherland’s Things To Do Before You Leave Town

 
Ross Sutherland was born in Edinburgh in 1979. He was included in The Times’s list of Top Ten Literary Stars of 2008. His debut poetry collection, Things To Do Before You Leave Town (Penned in the Margins), was published in January this year. Ross is also a member of the poetry collective Aisle16 with whom he runs Homework, an evening of literary miscellany in East London. His one-man poetry/comedy show, The Three Stigmata of Pacman, debuts at the Old Red Lion Theatre in Islington in January 2010. Visit Ross’s website.
 

Ross Sutherland

    
 
Critical praise for my last relationship
Ross Sutherland
   
At first glance, our faces appeared little more
than frayed notes, hinting at a distant mood.
Yet, on reflection, there was something compelling in that fraying:
My beard was loaded with the channeled pressure of something
                                                       being said.
Her eyes were not one thought, but two.
   
If you kept your nerve and stuck with us
You would have found that each day we spent together
had a distinct tone and shape.
Our subject range was impressive:
A man regresses himself through his previously owned automobiles,
A snow crystal grows synthetically on a petri dish,
Ovid laments his exile from Rome.
   
In winter, we underwent an odd shift of register.
Humour masked an aposiopesis. I trailed off into northern slang.
My invocation of a lost England was haunting in its fragility,
A place Frank Ormsby at the Belfast Telegraph described as
                                                      ‘a world of cries’.
  
She was as personal as Emily Dickinson.
I was as striking.
We were happy spanning joy and death together.
Cutting out every word we dared,
then walking out upon empty streets,
heat rising up into the negative space above us.
  
There were occasional poor lines,
but they were made noticeable by their rarity.
A meditation on the exchange of Christmas gifts
whilst well written,
felt too much like a generic picture of despair.
  
   
 
Published in Things To Do Before You Leave Town
(Penned in the Margins, 2009).
  
Buy Things To Do Before You Leave Town.
  
Check out a new animation based on another of Ross’s poems from Things To Do Before You Leave Town.