Merman, the fourth poetry collection by Jean O’Brien, takes its title from the winning entry of the 2010/11 Arvon International Poetry Award, judged by Carol Ann Duffy. From this lively and imaginative opening, the poems are always alert to the comic and the everyday, even when broaching the harder subjects of life, engaging with the prospects of illness and death with characteristic grace and candour.
“A wonderful poem.”
Carol Ann Duffy on ‘Merman’
Jean O’Brien is originally from Dublin, and now lives in the Irish Midlands. She has published three previous collections: The Shadow Keeper (1997), Dangerous Dresses (2005) and Lovely Legs (2009). She has an M.Phil in Creative Writing from Trinity College, Dublin. She facilitates creative writing classes for a wide variety of organisations, including the Irish Writers’ Centre and Dublin City Council. She has won the 2008 Fish International Poetry Award and the 2010/11 Arvon International Poetry Award.