6 OCTOBER 2007, Page 36


It glinted on your finger all my life, Clicked on your whisky glass or the steering wheel. You used to twist it off to wash your face In restaurant Gents before we had a meal.

The seal's a warlike claymore in a fist — Though you were the most peaceable of men, Relaxing with The Bookseller and your pipe. It could though, at a glance, look like a pen.

And that's how I prefer to look at it, A great, plumed, ink-primed quill, Although I always type, and my first book Was published just too late for you to sell.

Simon Rae