False Flags
Luke Roberts
2011

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£6.50 / €8 / $16.50. 80pp, 18.9×24.61cm, paperback. Cover image: ‘Untitled’, Steven Riddle. Gouache, spray paint on paper, 13x15, 2010. Published December 2011.

False Flags was initially conceived as a satire or part-satire on conspiracy theories and New Age irrationalism starting at Ground Zero and stretching back to the space race and other territorial contests of the past fifty years or so. The resultant text is a sequence of nine poems, including both short and extended lyrics, pseudo-narratives, and other mutating travesties. All the characters in the poem are real.

During its composition the author was awarded the Harper-Wood Studentship for Poetry, allowing him to travel extensively in the USA and under seasonal restrictions in Iceland. He was prevented from visiting the former Soviet Union by outbreaks of forest fires.

The seven other poems in the book were written between 2009-2011, mainly in London and Cambridge. Some of them were published in magazines, others distributed in hand-made editions. This is the first widely available collection of work by Luke Roberts.

Over the past five years Roberts has been involved in various poetic activities. He co-edits Grasp Press and was one of the curators of the Grasp Reading Series in Cambridge 2007-8. He was the editor of Axolotl magazine, and, with Justin Katko, has assembled various fugitive publications associated with the Cambridge Reading Series. He has given readings in the UK and the USA; recordings have been broadcast on Resonance FM and stored at the Archive of the Now. With Neil Pattison and Reitha Pattison he edited Certain Prose of the English Intelligencer, and is currently researching for a PhD on the work of Barry MacSweeney. He was born in 1987, some two months before Mathias Rust landed a plane illegally in the centre of Moscow.