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Surprising the Misses McRuvie by Eleanor Livingstone

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Thirteen years have gone by since Eleanor Livingstone’s last collection. For most of that time she was Director of Scotland’s StAnza festival, fulfilling remarkable ambitions for the poetry sector in general. Retirement has finally allowed her to draw together more of her own poems, the ones that emerged and were filed away in transit, poems that grew out of friendships, personal losses, anxiety, the journeys; the general busyness. Oh, but here is a poet falling in love with words all over again! This is work that communicates a palpable buzz. If only the Misses McRuvie were here to hear it....


‘In poems at once tender and elegiac, humorous and clear-eyed, and in deft, economical language, Eleanor Livingstone reveals how vulnerable and extraordinary are our ordinary lives.’


—Anna Crowe, poet and translator


‘Through the light of the present, fragments of the past shine like the hidden image in an optical illusion: Eleanor Livingstone’s linguistically brilliant poems are a palimpsest...’.


—Regina Dyck, Director of Poetry on the Road, Bremen


‘Eleanor Livingstone’s poems ask us to slow down. They trace the echoes of memory and grief, exploring the gaps in family histories and relationships. And yet as well as melancholy, there’s joy here and wry humour—and also the sheer faith and exhilaration that we need to keep on living.’


—Annie Rutherford, translator and event organiser


‘The underlined Bible, the old electric mixer, the couch, the needles, the trivial conversation that happened a long time ago—this is a poetic journey through an intimate museum of memories, where artefacts are the very objects that adorn our homes.’


—Mite Stefoski, Editor-in-Chief at Aleph Publications & former Director at Struga Poetry Evenings

Red Squirrel Press



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