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Review: The Herring Lass, by Michelle Cahill


What unites the diversity of voices in Cahill's poems is a shared sense of isolation. These figures are often marginal, and through them Cahill examines the experiences of colonialism for the colonised people.


The Herring Lass is a fine collection of poems. It is assured and adventurous, with a pluralistic quality; Cahill is at home describing animal or people in sometimes wholly different registers. This confidence in a number of different voices and subjects speaks of a poet with great natural gifts. Overall, this is a collection of striking thematic unity, and Cahill boldly executes her vision.