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2020 Moments: Lizzie McCreadie’s Glitterbawl

With 2020 drawing to a close, we’ve asked our writers to tell us about the moments that made the year for them.

Glitterbawl, the debut pamphlet from Glasgow based poet Lizzie McCreadie features poetics that are raw, visceral and heart breaking – but only because McCreadie tears your heart up herself. Her poetry ranges from discussing a technicoloured Christ on a shower curtain, the ethical question of buying vintage fur, to the strange nature of human connection.

McCreadie’s debut establishes her firmly as a young poet with unbridled talent and an instinct for sharp witticism. She is epistemological in her work, searching for meaning in small acts which themselves parallel much bigger questions. She asks us to examine what is truth and what is simply mimicry, and how can we be sure? However, she is not here to provide answers, instead Glitterbawl exists in the liminal space between the confessional and the cryptic.

McCreadie writes like a post-internet poet. Although she doesn’t discuss internet culture or language specifically there is a certain twenty-first century glitch to her writing. It is tangibly experienced in the casual inclusion of textual conversations and the utilisation of bots to converse with dead psychoanalysts. In these moments you realise Glitterbawl couldn’t possibly ignore the digital spaces we engage with every day. As such, it can be said that weaving the mundane with the profound is never an easy task but, in her plaintive reflections, McCreadie manages to discuss these aspects of everyday life as one with existential thought. 

Her work explores the way anxiety and nostalgia affect her daily hauntings and the thoughts that rattle around in our heads. This is a poet who can converse with Freud and nearly get the last laugh. McCreadie’s poetry examines psychosexual angst with a humorous and unflinching gaze – revealing the holy texts of song lyrics, messiahs in musicians, and anatomy of idols.

Glitterbawl tells you exactly what to expect – a sparkling reflection on pain – the party that awaits you on day one of the afterlife is nearly here… but not quite. 

Gilitterbawl is published by SPAM Press

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