It is almost completely apposite that I almost didn’t get to
read this collection, because the younger French Bulldog (a voracious consumer of all
books) got to the post before me. The first piece “Helium Pearl” describes the
chaos of the helium balloon seller trying to manage his fat cartoon dogs – I
know his pain.
This is a hard-to-categorise collection – poems, prose poems,
tiny gems of memoir. I don’t think it matters – imagine Pearl, the jewel at the
centre of each piece as the perfect flaneuse – taking you by the hand and
opening up the marvellous, the mysterious and the beautiful within the humdrum.
Julia Bird’s powers of observation are razor-sharp; these pieces read like perfect icons where every detail is imbued
with leaf gold. In "Liquid Pearl,"
Pearl takes to the water
in a blow-up chair the shape
of a size fourteen flamingo
of dry ice and Silk Cut smoke,
looks for all the world like
bluebells in a birch wood seen
from the far edge of a distant field.
Take a walk with Pearl – you may never see the world in quite the same way.
You can read a review of Cathi's collection on Everybody's Reviewing here.