David Cooke reviews The Night My Sister Went to Hollywood by Hilda Sheehan on the poetry ezine Ink Sweat and Tears. The review opens:
The Night My Sister Went to Hollywood is a debut collection from Hilda Sheehan, a mother of five who is the editor of Domestic Cherry magazine and works for Swindon Artswords. To judge from this collection, she is also an accomplished and idiosyncratic poet. Bristling with the stuff of everyday life, her poems are shot through with dark humour and surreal insights. The collection is divided into two sections. In the first she defines and explores her territory, a world in which, like the young mums in Larkin’s ‘Afternoons’, ‘something is pushing’ her protagonists ‘to the side of their own lives.’ Although this is an area which has frequently been visited by others, Sheehan brings to it her own slant, exploring various dichotomies: the banal and the miraculous, the mundane and the seemingly glamorous, the explicable and the disconcertingly surreal. In the second section the same polarities are at play, but her eye is focused more particularly on the conflict between romantic love and the pressures we all find ourselves under in coping with the business of life.
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