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Anorexic purple roses petal the laminate flooring
like shoe strings twisted in the night round necks:
liver of goose puffed through feathers.
The duvet changed with one razor cut.
Each year jealousy asks for a birthday pony.
- from ‘This is not a Sonnet’
Fear or hatred of poetry
From urban sketches of London and warped love poems to a paean to the Boston Tea Party and a letter to an American in Afghanistan, Metrophobia establishes a poetry that is inventive, quirky and packed with humour.
Stephanie Leal’s satirical verses, visual poems and prose chunks gnaw at the edges of pop culture and the everyday. Her language twists and turns in unexpected ways, revealing a bold new writer ready to ‘french kiss life square in the mouth’.
“This is a demanding, rewarding, refreshingly iconoclastic and earthy collection of poems for the way we live now.”
John Field, Poor Rude Lines
“A searching and resourceful imagination is at work here, seeking new perspectives with vitality and insight.”
“Leal [is] playful, experimental, questioning of ‘poetry’ as a specialised, rarefied state enjoyed only by sensitive types, her poems with a touch of theatre and bravura”
“These poems are an alternative news broadcast from a young American correspondent abroad in the world. Contained within them are many of the domestic and emotional snippets which CNN will never give you.”
“The poems turn familiar tropes and warp them into new, peculiar shapes; the one-night stand becomes a defiant one, stories of her grandfather take a hallucinatory turn. Stephanie Leal’s world is one where preconceived ideas unravel suddenly, leaving a strange and unfamiliar territory behind them. [...] She is neither militant nor fawning – a struck bell that demonstrates a romantic but pragmatic spirit.”
Andrew Spragg, Mad Dog