Literary City: The Sheffield Connection
A Contingency Plan, by Sheffield-based poet Suzannah Evans, features in her 2018 collection Near Future.
Evans says, “As you can probably guess from the poem below, the collection follows some futuristic, dystopian, apocalyptic themes, although it uses humour to confront these idea and so is far from being entirely gloomy.
I’m preoccupied with the future and think there is so much scope there for inspiration, from the terrifying prospects of climate change to humanity’s future relationship with technology.”
A Contingency Plan
What if we’re apart when the asteroid comes,
or the magnetic storm that shuts off the power?
You could be waiting for a train as the sun’s bulb
flickers out, high above the glass-panelled roof.
I’ll be at work. We’ll lose the phone lines,
the door-entry system will go haywire.
I will eat from the vending machine,
drink from the competition cupboard
and sleep on nylon carpet with my colleagues
all of us three-weeks unwashed. Stay where you are –
I’ll abseil down eight floors on a rope
made from the supply of festive tinsel,
loot M&S, steal a bike and make for the M1
forty miles of silence and abandoned cars
so we can witness the collapse of civilisation
with a picnic of high-end tins
so I can lie in your arms on a rooftop,
our dirty faces lit by fires.