Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Mick Imlah 1956-2009

Well, I had plenty to go on. My editor,
who’d used his club before the war, had warned me,
not disapprovingly, he could be cutting
and sarcastic: of his own wife, for instance,
as they left separately for a summer on Skye,
Hannah and the rest of the heavy baggage
will follow later; nor did he much enjoy
critical noises. But publicly he floated
on a cloud of pride, that bore him high and clear
like a balloon, whenever someone not
his equal – and surely few seemed otherwise –
appeared to him to be provoking him.

(At which he would lean back, hearing all this
quietly, only inflating slightly, as if to say,
“These” – quoting another – “are certainly some
of my characteristics, and I glory in them.”)

Extract from Rosebery by Mick Imlah who died yesterday.

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