‘A Walking Shadow’, p. 25

During these early weeks and months of my pregnancy, I continued working for Mel at the ‘Workshop’, earning a pittance and my 5% commission, but perfectly happy;  and spending evenings and weekend as a  flaneuse’ about town

. I was reading  the autobiography of V.S. Pritchett, beginning with Vo.1 :A Cab at the  Door. I was also trying to improve my poetic techniques; and was reading Paul Fussell’s  Poetic Metre and Poetic Form’.

I was seeing George quite a lot. He felt genuine concern and pain for me in my predicament as a ‘single parent’; and quite wished he had a son on the way. He was later to become a father, with his second wife.


George would gossip about the Raban-Ricks controversy that had been played out in the pages of The Listener recently; and how William Empson had written a letter in Jonathan’s defence, and make jokes about the poet, Douglas Dunn. Soon, George would be off to Israel on an Arts Council poetry reading junket with Adrian Mitchell, Hugo Williams and Robert Conquest.

I went with Jonathan to pick up the keys to his new flat at the Lowell’s place – 80, Redcliffe Square, but found that the door was locked from the inside . He blameg this on Israel, Caroline Blackwood’s former husband, who had previously lived  there.

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