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Stereograms of the Dead

Published by Red Squirrel Press

ISBN: 9780955402784

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"Alistair Robinson's poetry is the finding of the precious in the seemingly mundane. The poet is a curious on-looker (with avuncular disdain). A sense of questioning underpins the precision of the pieces in this, his first full collection. The mood is familial north eastern England, twinkling pragmatism with a hint of sentiment which never teeters over into the mawkish. The universe is Sunderland or even the old county of Durham, not as far north as Newcastle or as far south as outer space (which is somewhere near Thirsk). The world is that of Mantovani and Kendo Nagasaki, marmite and marmalade, and that world is teeming with life and odd eccentrics that are beautifully observed and tenderly written into life. The poet we find is an astronaut exploring inner and outer space (places beyond Thirsk), what lies in and beyond the oddly shaped, quaint world is nature, an ark-load of cormorants, bears, salmon, gulls, foxes and the ghosts that are not imaginary, the real ghosts of memory and loss. The delicate elegiac poetry fused with a sense of wonder and humour is both moving and life affirming."
Kevin Cadwallender

"A fan of Robinson's previous chapbook, I looked forward to reading his first full collection. It exceeds my expectations. An assured voice is here, able to finely balance wry detachment and deep feeling, to find humour in tragedy and pathos in the everyday, and to celebrate nature and how we live and struggle with it in the north east, with closely observed wit and clear-sighted affection. Language he uses with tough love, deftly juggling the daft puns, football imagery, and intellectual insights, constantly giving us that buzz we get from exactly the right word dropped lightly into exactly the right place."
Valerie Laws

"Enjoyable vignettes of Wearside, Sunderland and Durham, country I know well. A.R. engages in a witty, deadpan way with its monochrome image. Pigeons, dogs, allotments figure with memorable wit. There's warmth too."
Sally Evans, Poetry Scotland

Alistair Robinson is the former entertainments editor of the Sunderland Echo, who now teaches journalism at Sunderland University. In 2004 he won the Northern Promise award for poetry.
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