At the time of my birthday in 1952 Marion and I were enjoying the tenancy of the ground-floor flat in Beaufort House, with a garden where the Library now stands. The SCR were very interested to see it, and one at a time came to coffee. I introduced my old Teddy bear glove puppet to them. Marion’s amusing and teaching her young brother had led to her having built up a gang of puppets and toys, and a world for them to inhabit. We had used these in college for charades. These birthday greetings were from them:
We 4 friends who send you this
Greet you with a Birthday Kiss:
On the fly-leaf written clear
All our signatures appear:
Our initials follow here, Happy Birthday, mistress dear. E.B.B. R.C de LB. D.P. E de P
Suck it and see , WOG . H. S. B. I’LL SCRATCH YOUR BACK , YOU SCRATCH MINE A PRESENT FROM J.O. and Dinah. When with this you do inscribe think of us and all our tribe : May your shadow ne’er grow thinner !
0 B Horse . A Spider A. MacSkinner .
I have found these enfolded by an undated sonnet in small capitals, with its initials in red :
Your mind’s a very opal, clear and bright,
Reflecting with shot-silk inconstancy
The gay and wayward dance of candlelight
When silken hangings flutter suddenly :
My soul the candle, life the tapestry
Woven in silk with colours strange and old ;
Your mind’s an obdurate transparency
Frosty with flame, irradiate with cold .
Brilliance is mine, without stability ;
But you can neither change nor shine alone :
Death comes upon the wind of destiny;
When the flame dies, all lustre leaves the stone.
Then take, my love, all light at my command
To wake the glowing opal of your mind
11th June 1952