That pine dresser. Rows of stemmed glasses.
And yet what I remember is not the party,
chair legs scraping on tiles, wine in the bloodstream,
the sweat and itch from a day spent outside
nor even the voices that warmed or irritated,
the swirling frocks on young slim women
or a tee shirt stained with persimmon,
nor platters of olives and almonds
nor the fig trees on the backdrop of the moon
nor the Westie longing to play by the infinity pool
no nor even again the candles lit, unlit,
the incense of joss sticks confusing the wasps;
it's just the image of Bill Presley
holding the stem of one of these glasses
dancing the Song of Cock Robin
while we could not draw breath for laughing.
Hilary is a frequent visitor to the Almassera and in this poem recalls an evening during Mimi Khalvati's course in 2004. The poem was written on hearing of Bill Presley's death in December 2014. Bill was a stalwart member of the Metroland Poets of Buckinghamshire. He was a fine and original poet.