Tag Archives: Tim Turnbull

Tim Turnbull’s Caligula on Ice and Other Poems

Tim Turnbull

Tim Turnbull grew up in North Yorkshire, lived in London in his thirties and now resides in Perthshire. His latest collection Caligula on Ice and Other Poems is available from Donut Press.
Tim Turnbull

After that nasty goat business
he screwed his profile down,
plucked all his warts, sold off the bridge
and moved into a flat in town,
found himself a decent tailor,
an innovative cutter
who could disguise his lumps and humps,
then to stop the snarls and splutters
took some elocution lessons;
saw to his deportment;
found the private members’ clubs
where a better social sort went,
learnt the art of modish small talk,
how to flatter or to charm
with just a smidge of erudition
or great big bucket-loads of smarm;
who to ignore, who to trample,
when be early, when be late,
when reveal his brutish nature
in order to intimidate
and armed with these new social skills
he launched into the world
to make himself a better gnome
by getting status, cash and girls.
He took a job in publishing,
PR or some such-like
and shimmied up the slimy pole,
scaled to mildly giddying heights,
till with his air of seriousness
and his grave demeanour,
he won the reverence from his peers
you might give to a hyena.
But look into his gimlet eyes,
they’re wells of boiling rage.
He hardly can contain himself
inside that well groomed, urbane cage.
Which begs the question, doesn’t it,
how such a frightful beast
could make its way so smoothly
in the business world when it’s unleashed?
The answer’s pretty obvious,
and not a little grim –
the whole of London is awash
with semi-housetrained trolls like him.
Published in the StAnza anthology,
Skein of Geese (The Shed Press, 2008),
edited by Eleanor Livingstone.
Buy Caligula on Ice and Other Poems (Donut Press, 2009).
Visit Tim’s website.

Caligula on Ice and Other Poems

Cover design by Liam Relph, based on the artwork Repository (2009) by W. Hunt.

'The Raffish Look'

Some Favourite Poetry Collections of 2009: Part One

I hope you will enjoy these recommendations and consider buying a few collections, pamphlets and anthologies published this year by a range of presses. A huge thank you to the poets who gave me their choices for the year.
What’s your favourite volume of 2009? Feel free to include your recommendations in the comments section.
Moniza Alvi
Natural Mechanical by J O Morgan (CB Editions)
Cold Spring in Winter by Valérie Rouzeau, translated by
Susan Wicks (Arc Publications)
Continental Shelf by Fred D’Aguiar (Carcanet Press)
Ian Duhig
Rain by Don Paterson (Faber & Faber)
Grain by John Glenday (Picador)
Voice Recognition: 21 Poets for the 21st Century, edited by
Clare Pollard & James Byrne (Bloodaxe Books)
Sheenagh Pugh
How to Fall by Karen Annesen (Salt Modern Poets)
The Men from Praga by Anne Berkeley (Salt Modern Poets)
A Village Life by Louise Glück (Farrar, Straus & Giroux)
Dorianne Laux
End of the West by Michael Dickman (Copper Canyon Press)
Cradle Song by Stacey Lynn Brown (C&R Press)
Snowbound House by Shane Seely (Anhinga Press)
Alison Brackenbury
Rain by Don Paterson (Faber & Faber)
Nothing Like Love by Jenny Joseph (Enitharmon Press)
Samuel Menashe: New and Selected Poems (Bloodaxe Books)
Clare Pollard
Caligula on Ice and Other Poems by Tim Turnbull (Donut Press)
Third Wish Wasted by Roddy Lumsden (Bloodaxe Books)
Farewell My Lovely by Polly Clark (Bloodaxe Books)
Tamar Yoseloff
The Men from Praga by Anne Berkeley (Salt Modern Poets)
How to Fall by Karen Annesen (Salt Modern Poets)
Beneath the Rime by Siriol Troup (Shearsman Books)
The Clockwork Gift by Claire Crowther (Shearsman Books)
Annie Freud
Rain by Don Paterson (Faber & Faber)
Furniture by Lorraine Mariner (Picador)
Faber New Poets: Heather Phillipson (Faber & Faber)
John Wilkinson
Stress Position by Keston Sutherland (Barque Press)
Weak Link by Rob Halpern (Slack Buddha Press)
Clampdown by Jennifer Moxley (Flood Editions)
Marilyn Kallet
Practical Water by Brenda Hillman (Wesleyan Poetry)
Warhorses by Yusef Komunyakaa (Farrar, Straus & Giroux,
Sassing by Karen Head (WordTech Communications)