Later that month I read some poems of mine at Wanda’s Factory, at the church of St. Mary’s in Paddington Green, along with G. Weightman and Giles Gordon. It was pretty nerve-wracking, but Giles was very kind and complimentary to me. He said that he had enjoyed reading my poem, Concerning the Spiritual in Motherhood, in ‘The Listener’. He said that it was ‘hauntingly beautiful’, and that he hadn’t realised that I had written it.
I felt I’d reached the apogee of any possible poetic career. Subsequently, I’ve always been too nervous to read aloud. Perhaps standing up at a pulpit was the reason.
On May 2nd I met up with Alan (Munton) again, and we had a long conversation about literature today. James Fenton of the New Statesman has given Alan more work: writing book reviews. Alan was also writing for a new periodical : the New Academic, and I told him that I was going to the launch party at the Waldorf hotel May 10th.
It was here that I met dear Richard Layard, a lecturer at the LSE, who was very pleasant.
I went on quite a few dates with Richard from then on, including a 12-mile ramble around Petworth on the South Downs. I visited his house and even considered him as a possible marriage partner. I almost ended up going to live with him, but I then pulled back. Soon after that he started living with Liz Cohen, and I was really pleased for him. We were not to be , as a couple.
I was still continuing to meet up with Jonathan, who was spending a lot of time with Robert Lowell and his wife, Caroline ( nee Blackwood ), a scion of the Guinness family, and an heiress. Jonathan was spending a lot of time drinking, smoking and fishing with Lowell and taking long walks around the ‘estate’ in Kent. Lorna was with him,too. Jonathan was to remain very close to Lowell and to work with him. However, at this time, Jonathan was preparing a piece on Freud, for the Aquarius arts programme on T.V
Shortly after this, he left to join Lowell in the Orkneys.
I had received a letter from John Dixon-Hunt regarding my synopsis for Belgian Symbolists: Word and Image, part of a series on Symbolism that the publisher, Studio Vista , are considering publishing.