Blog

Ryan has a poem as part of the WW100 Project

March 2, 2018

I was commissioned to write “The Watcher“, a poem in commemoration of the sinking of the Tuscania, by the Islay Book Festival. Huge thanks to the festival team for inviting me to Islay, and you can read the poem here.

Ryan is in Return Flight MEL>EDI

July 1, 2017

My poem ‘To See It You Have To Look Hard’ is in the international anthology Return Flight MEL>EDI, published in Australia by Going Down Swinging.

If you’d like to read the poem, it is here.

Ten artists. Ten writers. Almost 17,000 kilometres of planet in between.

Meet ​Return Flight MEL>EDI​: a cross-continental creative exchange between twenty artists and writers in Melbourne and Edinburgh.

Lap up new art, interviews and words from the likes of Tony Birch, Matto Lucas, Chloe Wilson, Ryan Van Winkle, Jane Flett, Mitch Walder, Roz Bellamy​ and Aimee Fairman​.

Design by Jacqui Hagen.

Curated by Elizaveta Maltseva and produced by Going Down Swinging.

Thanks to our sponsors for making this edition possible.

 

The Good Dark is A Short Film

May 24, 2017

My poem has become a short film. Here’s a peek.

The Good Dark is a short film based on the poem ‘Untitled (Snoopy)’ by Ryan Van Winkle. Directed and produced by Lucas Kao. Produced, shot and scripted by Leo Michael Bruges (AyeFilm 2017). ‘Untitled (Snoopy)’ was published in ‘The Good Dark’ (2015) and is featured here with the kind permission of Penned in the Margins, London.

Ryan makes Subtle Moves

May 17, 2017

In 2016 the Melbourne-based artist Laura Woodward asked for a poem concerning subtle, nuanced movements to compliment her upcoming solo shows & publication. I wrote ‘Subtle Moves’. In May 2017 I joined my longtime collaborator, Dirk Markham, in the studio for his Digital in Berlin radio hour. In between the finest new music from around the word, we recorded this ambient poem/song and sent it flying through the air.
Listen in & check out Laura’s moving, mysterious kinetic installations on her website. Her work is real special. http://www.laurawoodward.com.au/
and you can listen to the whole show and explore Dirk’s archives here:

Commiserate — April 2017 — Dave Coates

April 27, 2017

On not being asked by anyone

Dave Coates & Ryan Van Winkle

On not being asked by anyone

 

I

sunset breathing fire
dangerous toxin levels
in the atmosphere

oh snowflake, embrace
the 19th century, feel

how nice it was, how nice

and it must be nice
to accept god’s silence

to grab what is yours
right off the shelf

amber boxes of grain
land of pilgrim’s pride
sorry, this soup
tastes of corpses

sorry
you have not emerged
as a significant
force

 

II

 

Moloch, what do you say to the colours on the street
Will they sing their purple songs till their faces are blue

Do you want to make a bet, Moloch, did we win
are we winning, Moloch! Losers! Haters! Poison!

Greased coins slip from our fingers! Moloch! Them women
ain’t going quiet!  It’s them Russians, them big bears, Moloch
you can wrestle. Moloch! Not weak! Not low energy!

Sad! It’s Sad!

Children wash up on sand. Chi-na children.
Syrian children. Are you scared of the beach, Moloch?

 

III

 

EU academics should
make preparations to leave,

we found three earth-like planets,
it is warm for february,

it is warm for mittens, for wooly hats,
for sheep in the meadows, for suckers.

My shoes need laces, they say
pull up your pants, wear a belt.

The world is elderly, the world has been elderly
since before you were born, my dear.

I hardly recognise you. That shirt, that colour
doesn’t suit you, I no longer trust your mustache.

This isn’t talking. This isn’t saying.
This is a fact. This is opinion.

Don’t call me sucker.

 

IV

 

sorry, i’m trying to stay
professional here, i know
there are children watching

sorry, this is traditional
sorry all this has a
grim familiarity

 

V.

 

we are living. we aren’t doing much. we were all sitting around.
a pack of poets finishing the black wine, dipping bread
into squid ink. and, of course, somebody says Syria,
and of course someone has an opinion. you see, we’ve thought
about this. we are sensitive and international. we know the news
from all points of the compass. we are whalers. we are at sea
for months at a time.

we are in serbia but the serbs are not talking about war.
but the dane is describing sleeping churches.
but the spaniard is articulating an algorithm – saying capacity capacity capacity
but the romanian sees refugee children with new schoolbags
but the american stays quiet because she is stoned. she went
out to the bay and watched lights twinkle on ripples.
but the greek breaks and reminds us there are bodies
washing up on the shore and the young boys in service
have to pull them out, line them up, count them
every day there are more numbers

so someone says ‘what can we do?’ as if there was a hotline.
nobody says ‘we should write a poem’. nobody says
we should just go on living. somebody says we should finish
this bottle and then get some sleep. someone says we
should finish this bottle, have a shot of schnapps
and then see where the night takes us. because we
are alive and this is what the living do.

 

VI

 

the clock doesn’t care
nor does the television
nor the talking heads

my life is a sofa, a love seat, a bed.

i read newsweek, i read time
counting up the names like mine
there are so many

i’m on a panel
i say some uncomfy things
i will not make friends

that is the best part – rowing the boat away

i will not make friends with you

 

VII

 

The ruins proclaim
our building was beautiful.

There were oranges.

Fact explains nothing.
2 + 2 = who gives a shit

where’s my phone?
have you seen my phone?

i remember standing with her
until he got bored and walked away

i remember the clerk saying
I would prefer not to

i remember i was carrying
a box of cereal
my favourite

the sky was red i had
a few minutes before work

i would prefer not to

Ryan in the Poetry Spotlight

September 6, 2016

Poetry Spotlight has published an interview with me, alongside a new poem, “Putina”, about Lyudmila Putina, wife of the Russian premier. You can read both here.

Ryan in Best Scottish Poems

April 9, 2016

Delighted to have my poem ‘One Year the Door Will Open‘ included in this year’s Best Scottish Poems anthology, curated by the Scottish Poetry Library.

It’s a great selection from this year’s editor, Ken MacLeod, and you can read them all here.

‘Island’ Published in HARK Magazine

December 9, 2015

Really pleased to have my poem ‘Island’ published in the new edition of HARK Magazine: The Death Issue. You can read and download the new issue in a pdf here.

Poems in translation on Lyrikline

October 3, 2015

So totally delighted to have fifteen of my poems posted in translation on Lyrikline: Untitled (Howe)The Ocean I Call MineWindow, Not SkyUnfinished Rooms, The ApartmentThe FloodI Do Not Want Rain for RainBabelA Raincoat, A Spell of Rain Ago, Oregon TrailMy 100-Year-Old GhostSummer Nights, WalkingUntitled (Lincoln)Waiting for the Ocean, and The Duke in Pines appear in their original English plus translations into Arabic, Turkish, Bulgarian, German and Bosnian.

Thanks so much to the translators for all their hard work, and thanks to VERSschmuggel, Highlight Arts & Literature Across Frontiers who facilitated many of these versions.

I Do Not Want Rain For Rain in Berlin

October 1, 2015

Huge thanks to the wonderful folks at The Reader Berlin for having me over and recording this video of my poem ‘I Do Not Want Rain for Rain‘. Apologies for the dog.

The poem is from my second book, The Good Dark, published by Penned in the Margins.

spikeyborder