Review of ‘Sherry and Sparkly’ by Maureen Cullen & Patricia M. Osborne

Nigel Kent - Poet and Reviewer

Today something new again. This time I’m reviewing the latest in the Hedgehog Poetry Press series of poetry conversations, Sherry and Sparkly, (Hedgehog Poetry Press, 2021) between Patricia M. Osborne (who is no stranger to these pages) and Maureen Cullen.

This pamphlet constitutes a conversation between two poets reminiscing about and reflecting upon their common experiences, starting with their experiences of childhood in the fifties and sixties. Unsurprisingly many of the poems focus on the impact of change upon them. In Osborne’s Isolated we see her recollecting the moment when as a young girl she had to cope with a change of school due to her family’s move away from Bolton. The environment is bewildering and alienating for her: she has no option but to ‘follow’, she ‘shuffle(s) round/ back and forth, late/ for class, past/ identical staircases/ toilets, cloakrooms, coats/ blue doors, yellow walls-‘, the syntax and rhythm perfectly…

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