Hilarious, harrowing, and very, very strange: nobody does poetry like Stuart Ross. In this compelling and lively collection, the follow-up to 1996’s The Inspiration Cha-Cha, Stuart Ross hones his surrealistic pen to a sharp and dangerous point. The world of Farmer Gloomy’s New Hybrid is one of darkly comic transmutations, wild flights of paranoia, and even the occasional flash of pure bliss. With the same energy and unsettling humor that makes Ross such a popular live performer, every piece in this volume whether it’s about an apocalypse at an abandoned drive-in cinema, a runaway shopping mall that seeks refuge in a small boy’s bedroom, a tourist in Central America who finds his fate in a bowl of murky soup, or a man who transforms into a cartoon mouse before a job interview is both a provocation and an escalation. In pieces like the collection’s centrepiece, the long-poem Sitting by the Judas Hole,” Ross continues to challenge our perceptions of everyday banalities. Always unique, always entertaining, no one in Canada writes poetry quite like Stuart Ross.