Treasuring Poetry – Poet and author, Sally Cronin, talks about poetry and my review

Today, I’m delighted to welcome author, poet, and blogger, Sally Cronin as my February Treasuring Poetry guest.

A collage of Sally Cronin’s book covers

Why do you write poetry?

Thank you so much Robbie for inviting me along to talk about poetry it is lovely to be here.

I loved nursery rhymes when I was very young, and for most children it is their first introduction to poetry. I wanted to write my own and would scribble down as stories that probably made no sense to anyone but me.   I illustrated them and even put them together in a book I kept under the mattress and they were not shown to anyone. I was seven and my growing love of all kinds of poetry from short and pithy to the long saga adventures has never faded. As a teenager I switched to writing song lyrics and found it a wonderful way to express my thoughts and feelings.

For many, as we become adults, life brings other priorities and responsibilities, and writing for pleasure is put aside. When I gave up corporate life and retrained in nutrition in my 40s I still worked hard, but the schedule was mine to make. It left time for my more creative side and I began to write books, and also began to experiment with poetry in various formats.

I love the challenge of telling a story in a few lines or ever a few syllables. I have often started off with five or six verses and ended up with two. It is the same with 99 word flash fiction and nothing gives me more pleasure when someone says they enjoyed the story.

Do you think poetry is still a relevant form of expressing ideas in our modern world? If yes, why?

I definitely think poetry is still a relevant form of communication in our modern world. In fact the more technology takes over our lives, it should become more relevant. Robots are being programmed to write text in many forms including poetry. But, without the human emotion infused into the words, it might rhyme, be perfectly correct in form, but it will lack that vital ingredient.

Which poem by any other poet that you’ve read, do you relate to the most?

I have always loved poetry and there are many I relate to, particular as I get older. One of the hopes of any writer is that our words will linger on after we have gone, but I also believe we leave a sense of ourselves in the places we have lived and the people we have known. I have lost family and friends and I see those I have loved in quite random things that remind me of them and the time we spent together. This poem by Mary Elizabeth Frye sums that up for me beautifully.

Do not stand at my grave and weep
I am not there. I do not sleep.
I am a thousand winds that blow.
I am the diamond glints on snow.
I am the sunlight on ripened grain.
I am the gentle autumn rain.
When you awaken in the morning’s hush
I am the swift uplifting rush
Of quiet birds in circled flight.
I am the soft stars that shine at night.
Do not stand at my grave and cry;
I am not there. I did not die.

Which of your own poems in Variety is the Spice of Life is your favourite and why?

I am not sure if it is because I am now heading into my second childhood, but I had a lot of fun writing Lullaby and perhaps it is because of an abiding memory of being sung to as a child in a foreign language when we lived abroad. The words might not have been understood but the emotion and love certainly were.


to sing
a lullaby
you must first consider
preferences of the baby

a jolly song
aimed to make them chortle
to wave their hands around with glee

slow and gentle
soothing a fractious mood
or the soreness of teething gums

deep toned
to reassure
those fearing the shadows
now allayed by a father’s voice

a foreign tongue
but words that mothers sing
to babies all around the world

Is writing poetry easy for you compared to prose or do you do a lot of editing and revision of your poems?

I probably do as much editing and revision of my poetry as I do my prose. I used to struggle with the format but now I am working with syllabic poetry I find it easier. I began writing haikus about ten years ago and once I began participating in challenges online on a regular basis, my options for different formats expanded.

As with my prose, I start with a brain dump and then go back again and again until I am happy with the end result.

Poetry is always best shared orally by the poet. You have started sharing your poetry via podcasts. Are you finding this a good way of sharing your poetry with others?

I mentioned how poetry should convey emotion that resonates with the reader, and I do believe that when a poem is read aloud, it allows for colour to be added to the words to bring the emotion to life. From the feedback, including you own, I am finding it a great way to share my poems and those of others I admire, such as the War Poets.  This year I hope to share more of those and of other poets I admire.

Podcast link

Thank you, Sally, for being a wonderful guest!

My review of Variety is the Spice of Life by Sally Cronin

Cover of Variety is the Spice of Life by Sally Cronin

This delightful book is a mixture of poetry and short stories. Much of the poetry relates to nature and nature’s impact on humanity, although a few focus on human relationships. All of the poems are syllabic and beautifully written.

My favourite of the poems, and a few lines from each, are as follows:

Kinship –
“sanctuary formed in kinship
there may not always be harmony
but the ties of love cannot be broken.”

Storm front –
“clouds disperse and run for their lives
to seek shelter of night
softer gaze of
the moon.”

Drought –
“grass shoots
vibrantly green
burst thought the ground in days
a miracle of abundance
at last”

The short stories in the book are all typical of the author’s style of writing. Each story pierces the veil of human relationships and behaviour and exposes the good and the bad for the reader’s enjoyment, surprise, shock, and entertainment.

My four favourites were as follows:

Miss Lloyd’s Robin – a short story that has many facets. It emphasizes that people’s looks generally do not define them and gently reminds the reader not to stereotype people based on appearance. Miss Lloyd thinks that Sharon Dawson will never amount to anything because she has unruly red hair that is hard to tame. This story also highlights the damage an unkind teacher can inflict on a student. At the same time, Miss Lloyd, so hard and sharp in the classroom, has a softer side and feeds the birds in her backyard with relentless determination. This is a beautiful, feel good story that leaves the reader believing in the goodness of people.

The Green Hill – this short story has a light paranormal twist and joyfully highlights the beauty of a long and loving relationship and marriage between two people. It also demonstrates the strength of devotion that develops between people and their dogs.

The Secret – another beautifully written story about the potential damage secrets within a close family circle can do. It also highlights the terrible indifference of many people in positions to influence others, especially youngsters, and their complete irresponsibility and selfishness. This story made me glad that most of the girls I grew up with and who my sons associate with are a bit street wise. Modern women who grow up in more enlightened households are no longer naïve to a point where they can ruin their whole lives over a misguided mistake. It was delightful that this story had a satisfying ending.

The Healer – this tale was set in a dystopian future when people with the ability to heal and help the sick are persecuted as charlatans and imprisoned for life. I enjoyed reading about Serina and her gift and discovering how common sense and love for a child will often overwhelm fear of reprisal from a misguided and often cruel leadership. A lovely story with a fulfilling outcome.

Another well written and thought provoking collection from a talented author.

Amazon US books

Amazon UK books

Sally Cronin’s Amazon author page

About Sally Cronin

Picture of Sally Cronin

Sally Cronin is the author of sixteen books including her memoir Size Matters: Especially when you weigh 330lb first published in 2001. This has been followed by another fifteen books both fiction and non-fiction including multi-genre collections of short stories and poetry.

As an author she understands how important it is to have support in marketing books and offers a number of FREE promotional opportunities on her blog and across her social media. The Smorgasbord Bookshelf

Her podcast shares book reviews, poetry and short stories Sally Cronin Soundcloud

After leading a nomadic existence exploring the world, she now lives with her husband on the coast of Southern Ireland enjoying the seasonal fluctuations in the temperature of the rain.

My blog is

And for more information on my books listed here at Amazon please visit

Connect with Sally Cronin

Goodreads -
Blog :

About Robbie Cheadle

Award-winning, bestselling author, Robbie Cheadle, has published thirteen children’s book and two poetry books. Her work has also appeared in poetry and short story anthologies.

Robbie also has two novels published under the name of Roberta Eaton Cheadle and has horror, paranormal, and fantasy short stories featured in several anthologies under this name.

The ten Sir Chocolate children’s picture books, co-authored by Robbie and Michael Cheadle, are written in sweet, short rhymes which are easy for young children to follow and are illustrated with pictures of delicious cakes and cake decorations. Each book also includes simple recipes or biscuit art directions which children can make under adult supervision.

Robbie’s blog includes recipes, fondant and cake artwork, poetry, and book reviews.

119 Comments on “Treasuring Poetry – Poet and author, Sally Cronin, talks about poetry and my review”

  1. beth says:

    sally is so very talented

    Liked by 4 people

  2. Sally is an Amazing talent. Thanks for sharing, Robbie. 🙂

    Liked by 4 people

  3. Reblogged this on Robbie's inspiration and commented:

    Sally Cronin is my guest for Treasuring Poetry this month. Do come over and learn more about her thoughts on poetry and her poetry podcast. I’ve also shared my review of her latest poetry and prose book, Variety is the Spice of Life. Thank you, Kaye Lynne Booth, for hosting.

    Liked by 2 people

  4. Thank you, Robbie, for featuring Sally and her writing. No matter what she touches, it’s magical. Every day I’m inspired by her blogs and her published work. My heartfelt congratulations to Sally — and a huge thank you for brightening the day for all. ❤️

    Liked by 4 people

  5. Sally is an incredible writer and blogger. In addition, her knowledge on a variety of subjects blows my mind. I believe she’s one of those rare individuals who is blessed with 48 hours in her day! 🙂 Thanks for featuring her today, Robbie.

    Liked by 4 people

  6. Staci Troilo says:

    What a wonderful feature on Sally and her work. All the best to her.

    Thank you, Robbie.

    Liked by 3 people

  7. memadtwo says:

    I always learn from the questions and answers of your interviews Robbie. I think Sally is right about emotion connecting the reader to the poet. Her work reflects that. (K)

    Liked by 3 people

  8. I too loved nursery rhymes as a child, and also made up my own poems. I have read a few of Sally’s books and enjoyed them. Thanks for sharing, Robbie.

    Liked by 3 people

  9. Lovely post for and about Sally! ❤

    Liked by 3 people

  10. Wow Sally, sixteen books… Congratulations…. And I so agree with Sally about the creative aspects of writing poetry with ‘heart’…. Too many ‘Robotics’ over taking our creative space… Robots and IT may be able to create via copying technique’s etc But they will never replace Emotions spoken from the heart..

    A lovely interview Robbie and Sally…. Sending you both some LOVE.. ❤

    Liked by 4 people

  11. Great answers. I was particularly interested in Sally’s answer to whether poetry is still a relevant form of expressing ideas in our modern world. I’d just read a Haiku written by the (in)famous AI, ChatGPT. It reminds me that poetry says so much in so few words.

    Liked by 2 people

  12. A lovely book from Sally I can also recommend and Treasuring poetry post too.

    Liked by 3 people

  13. Darlene says:

    I enjoy Sally’s poems as they are relatable. I agree, poems are better read out loud. The poem by Mary Elizabeth Frye I had read around at my mom’s graveside funeral. I too enjoyed Sally’s latest book. A great review, Robbie.

    Liked by 3 people

  14. balroop2013 says:

    This is a lovely post Robbie. Sally is incredibly kind and creative – a rare combination! Thanks for sharing her work.

    Liked by 5 people

  15. I enjoyed the interview with Sally, Robbie. She is a treasure, and there is no doubt. Thanks for this.

    Liked by 4 people

  16. Dan Antion says:

    Thanks for this interesting interview and your review, Robbie. I have to add this to the burgeoning TBR pile, but it sounds great.

    Liked by 3 people

  17. I read your interview with Sally with a great deal of interest. “Lullaby” is one of my favorite poems of hers. The voice is so endearing. Sharing on Facebook.

    Liked by 4 people

  18. What a wonderful post, especially since I’ve savored several of Sally’s books of short prose and poetry. I love learning her backstory.

    Liked by 3 people

  19. alexcraigie says:

    I’m delighted to find this interview of Sally Cronin by Robbie Cheadle. Both of them cram so much into each day and are so very generous with their time for the writing community. I loved this book and I think that Lullaby is probably my favourite too – although all the pieces moved me one way or another and can swap places according to my mood! ❤

    Liked by 3 people

  20. CarolCooks2 says:

    I have always loved nursery rhymes and as I am getting older I am enjoying the words of those who can write poetry like Sally. A lovely interview Robbie and a great review 🙂 x

    Liked by 3 people

  21. D.L. Finn, Author says:

    Wonderful interview and review! I loved the poetry and insights xo

    Liked by 2 people

  22. olganm says:

    It’s always wonderful to see Sally getting some of the attention she so generously offers artists, writers and bloggers, especially learning more about her love of poetry and how she started writing it. Thanks, Robbie, and congratulations to Sally on a great interview and review.

    Liked by 3 people

  23. Teri Polen says:

    Wonderful to see Sally featured here, Robbie. She’s such a huge supporter of indie authors. Loved the selections!

    Liked by 3 people

  24. Hi Robbie, it’s great to see Sally here and I enjoyed the interview, along with your beautiful review. I loved this book and look forward to reading more of her books you have highlighted. Congrats to Sally! ❤️

    Liked by 3 people

  25. dgkaye says:

    Fabulous interview with Sally, Robbie. So happy to see her in the spotlight here. I love that Lullabye poem, and I’m so with Sally on AI poetry. I don’t believe AI can convey the emotion that comes from the human writing it. Hugs ❤ xx

    Liked by 3 people

  26. I loved hearing your great review on Sally’s poetry, Robbie! She is an accomplished writer and it’s so much fun to hear how she approaches her poetry and her favorite poems that flow so beautifully! 💗

    Liked by 3 people

  27. Toni Pike says:

    Congratulations to Sally – this was a fantastic review and interview. I love “Lullaby” – and agree with Sally, that Mary Elizabeth Frye poem is incomparable. We’re in for interesting times with the advent of AI, but it will never produce anything like Sally’s writing. I should be posting my review this week. Toni x

    Liked by 3 people

  28. What a fabulous interview and review! I enjoyed learning more about Sally. Her poetry is always a pleasure to read and enjoy. Thanks, Robbie, Kaye, and Sally! 💜

    Liked by 1 person

  29. A lovely interview, Robbie and Sally. I enjoyed learning about Sally’s poetic journey and the poems that are most meaningful to her, in general and from her collection. A wonderful review Robbie, of a collection I thoroughly enjoyed. Great share. And thanks to Kaye Lynne for hosting. 🙂

    Liked by 3 people

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