Features Published 13 June 2016

Edinburgh Fringe Programme Poetry

Don't be fooled by gimp owl: the Edinburgh Fringe has a sensitive side. Natasha Tripney offers a cut-up poem plucked from the pages of the Edinburgh Fringe Programme.
Natasha Tripney


Lost in a lonely city. Facing sky-rocketing rent. The hours tick by. Through many comedic perils. Nuclear winter has descended. Narnia doesn’t exist.The world’s worst school disco. Takes a disastrous turn. Only the tribal young survive. It’s Scotland but not as you know it.

Set in 2091. In a culture of amplified voices. In a digital world. In a world full of crisis. In a world where everything has become acceptable. In a world where citizens rehabilitate criminals. In a generation of renters. In a mismatched Edinburgh flat. In an abandoned ghost tube station. In a small tea room. In the final days of mankind. In the blood-soaked ruins of London. In the company of purest evil. A hidden emoji world. Accelerates into the cyber. Where do all the dead pigeons go?

Holed up in an old tree-house. After a gory indiscretion. A jilted bride. A Polish taxidermist. A gender-curious teen. A potty-mouthed suicidal doll. A paranoid landlord. An extinct fish. An alcoholic cabaret singer. And her resentful blue-collar brother. Haunted by his memories. Who speaks dog fluently. Pottering among the seeds. Bored of playing nice. They learn the true meaning of teamwork. With tragic consequences.

A hypnotic hour. A scream for freedom of art. An ISIS tragicomedy. A searing, forensic new play. A violent and duplicitous dinner. A vivacious interactive experience. A true tale of heroism. A bloody hilarious zombie romp. A clown show for grownups. A lesson in fascism and totalitarian control. A music and mime extravaganza. A veritable story machine. Using immersive sensory technology. Tackling scientific ethics. In palindromic form. Inspired by real events. Inspired by Tim Burton’s poetry. Inspired by the story of Moses. Experienced on headphones. Fusing songs, stories and underwater levitation. With a sit-down meal. With a live mix-tape. Played in a small wooden cabin. Gate-crashed by Vincent van Gogh. Who brought the sock puppet?

Plagued by a 100-year old curse. Plagued with inner turmoil. Trapped behind enemy lines. Living in suburbia by accident. Like a lukewarm knife. After a mysterious explosion. Dementia strikes. The personal and political collide. Expect the unexpected. The time for courage has come.

Horribly honest clowns. Some casual shoplifting. Biblical re-enactment. 36 trillion variations. B-movie clangers. Overwhelming objects. Murderous dolphins. Furry angels. A hatful of chickens. Full frontal illusions. Some well-placed couscous. Glimpses into the yawning void. An indefinable terror. Reverberates through the ages. Laughs guaranteed. It’ll be cathartic.

The search is over. A riot is brewing. A trap has been set. Come look at the baby. There will be cake.

No more words.

Let’s party.


Natasha Tripney

Natasha co-founded Exeunt in 2011 and was editor until 2016. She's now lead critic and reviews editor for The Stage, and has written about theatre and the arts for the Guardian, Time Out, the Independent, Lonely Planet and Tortoise.



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