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Sam J. Grudgings

‘I found solace & sobriety in the poetry community & to repay them I wanted to write a wonderful grisly spectacle to sate their morbid curiosity & to challenge the notion that recovery has one set path or that any of them are easy’

Sam J. Grudgings is a poet perpetually on the edge of collapse, shortlisted for the Outspoken Prize 2020 & longlisted in 2019. Renowned for his off-kilter, frenetic delivery & boundary pushing stage dynamic, Sam grew up in the punk scene & it shows.  

Injecting gallows humour into fiercely wrought metaphors, Sam subverts the narratives of addiction, bringing a wry touch to devastating subjects whilst still allowing himself the space to be painfully candid & devastatingly vulnerable. He yells stories about recovery, mental illness, loss, fighting god & cities made of teeth because it’s  cheaper than therapy & is less physically taxing than pornography .

Sam runs workshops on performance as well as campaigning for the recognition of lived experience in professional & academic circles.  He endeavours to bring poetry to everyone eventually. He can be found if you know where to look.


A defiant splatterpunk body horror on the Inneracy of theological doctrine, in the context of recovery, addiction, death & grieving. A kind of reverent aching. A glorious descent into havok & profanity.

Exploring what god is to an addict, The Bible II is a gory, surreal How-Not-To-Guide for alcoholics coming to terms with their own saviour complex in absence of traditional methods of recovery.

The world is ending but if you need something a little more holy to guide your soul wherever you think you are heading this might be it.



As part of sm(art) festival 21, Sam performed his poem ‘Redeemer’ (which features in The Bible II) from his bedroom in Bristol.

Flustered, inimitably poignant, and profound, Sam experimented with 1930s silent film background projection along with his signature frenetic delivery and whirlwind stage presence.