A sister often knows us better than anyone. This selection of poems (a companion to Ten Poems about Brothers) explores that special relationship – from the games and secrets of early childhood that we remember so vividly to the separate journeys of later life.
For Dorothea Smartt, two sisters form a pair of carefree ‘toe-tapping feet’ while Jean Tepperman’s depiction of sisterhood celebrates the thrill of defying convention. In Galway Kinnell’s moving poem a childhood shared with a sibling creates a reassuring lifelong bond:
“…we will walk
hand in hand a little while,
taking the laughter of childhood
as far as we can into the days to come,”
from ‘Two Set Out On Their Journey’ by Galway Kinnell
Most of all, these poems remind us of that life is enlivened and enriched by having a sister. Never coy or timid, they are sure to provoke discussion – and hopefully many lively family conversations!
Poems by Julia Bird, Wendy Cope, Michael Donaghy, Galway Kinnell, Esther Morgan, PK Page, Dorothea Smartt, Jean Tepperman, Jack Underwood and Julia Webb.
Cover illustration by Hilke MacIntyre.