Daughter — Patricia Helen Wooldridge
Composed in three movements—preludes, variations and fugue—Daughter is an exploration of what being the daughter means for the poet and her parents, recognising that there is so much of our parents’ lives that is barely glimpsed, that is pieced together from stories.
What was it like to live through the Second World War beside the Thames in London? How can the writer celebrate her parents’ lives and mourn their deaths through her own development as a poet? How can she express love for those she thinks of constantly?
For Patricia Helen Wooldridge, inspired by Virginia Woolf’s A Sketch of the Past, the answers are acts of imagination, merging memoir with poetry. Lyrical, seasonal, walking in landscape, soaring with birds and full of flowers, Daughter paints the world of parents and poet through a collage of memories. Tender, poignant, balancing the enormity of loss with the vastness of love and, crucially, demonstrating the grace of poetry to meld past and present, this is an exquisite and heart-felt collection.
Patricia Helen Wooldridge lives in Hampshire and is inspired by walking, bird watching and working on her allotment. She studied English Literature at London University and has a doctorate in creative writing. In the past she has taught English in schools and more recently creative writing to undergraduate students. Her work has been placed in a variety of poetry competitions and has appeared in poetry journals and competition anthologies. Most notably she received a commendation in the National Poetry Competition 2013 and in 2016 she was awarded first prize in the Kent and Sussex Open Poetry Competition. Her collection, Sea Poetics won the Cinnamon Press Debut Poetry Collection Prize in 2017 and her pamphlet, Being won the Cinnamon Press Pamphlet Award in 2020. Patricia’s latest collection, Out in the Field, won the 2022 Cinnamon Literature Award.
Her poem, ‘I Stop Wearing the Mini-skirt, 1972’ was commended in the 2013 National Poetry prize and used to develop a workshop guide by poety, Jane Yeh, for the The Poetry Society.