Closer than Breathing

Seven Tales for Our Time

By R.I. Sutton


Speak to Him thou for He hears, and Spirit with Spirit can meet-

Closer is He than breathing, and nearer than hands and feet.

Alfred Lord Tennyson, The Higher Pantheism

Here, you can find understanding in the peripheral places: down a storm water drain, within a willow tree's grain—or, at sea, in that hazy line where water meets sky. Closer than Breathing seeks the inner life in an incredulous world. Here, an agnostic glimpses faith in a butterfly’s wings; an exile finds her way home on a mythical steed; and a young girl faces the world's end with a song. Closer than Breathing reveals the monumental in life's detritus with a precision that is both anatomical and sublime.



In the creative spirit of Michael Leunig, R.I. Sutton's illustrated volume is an affirmation of soul, challenging the empiricism and industrialisation of our time. Closer than Breathing revives the tradition of the tale—that distinctive literary form exemplified by such writers as Nathaniel Hawthorne and Karen Blixen. In unique, limited edition, this work is typeset, letterpress printed and bound by the author's own hands.