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Obligate Carnivore by Stuart McPherson

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Obligate Carnivore is an immaculate introduction to Stuart McPherson’s poetry. Painted in the jagged brushstrokes of wounded masculinity and childhood trauma, McPherson excavates new darkness. The haunted images – wolves, corpses, moons and abattoirs  - are not only vessels for McPherson’s poems, but form part of an internal nightmare logic, creatures of the hell McPherson is trying to escape from. Writing, which as Barthes wrote: “is the destruction of every voice, of every point of origin.”


PRAISE for Obligate Carnivore:

Stuart McPherson’s perilous mixture of vulnerability and concealment—like 90s grunge played on one of Cage’s prepared pianos—elicits emotions I didn’t know I possessed. “Something trapped within the hazelnut of its dried open eyes.” I want to crawl in among McPherson’s lines (“A concertina / of rotting cells / strung together”) and behold them, be held by them. Obligate Carnivore is a brutally gorgeous debut.

   — Jaydn DeWald, The Rosebud Variations



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