Thursday, October 18, 2012

June Hatton, 22/6/1924 - 5/9/2012

On behalf of the Shakespeare Club of Western Australia, our president, Frances, accepted the honour of speaking at June Hatton's funeral last month. June belonged to the Perth Shakespeare Club for many years, and was one of our most knowledgeable members. Much-loved by her fellow members, not just for her scholarship and her lovely reading, but for her gentleness, humour and modesty, June passed away after a short illness and her death was shock to us all. She will be sorely missed at our meetings.

Frances was asked to represent the club and to offer a reading in memory of June, acknowledging her love of all poetry. This is what Frances said:

As you have heard, June was for many years a member of the Shakespeare Club of WA – an influential member, held in fond and high regard by us all. We valued June for her unfailingly enthusiastic support for all the Club's activities; we respected her scholarship and the keen insights she brought to the texts we were studying, and we enjoyed her gentle charm and kindly humour.

On behalf of all our members I have selected ‘The Windhover’, by Gerard Manley Hopkins as a tribute to June's special awareness and appreciation of fine language and literature, and particularly to acknowledge her well-known delight in the poetic imagery of the senses and the natural world. I believe that the joyous delicacy of this poem reflects much of June's own spirit, and her gentle but acute sensitivities.
I caught this morning morning’s minion, kingdom of daylight’s dauphin, dapple-drawn Falcon, in his riding
Of the rolling level underneath him steady air, and striding
High there, how he rung upon the rein of a wimpling wing
In his ecstasy! Then off, off forth on swing,
As a skate’s heel sweeps smooth on a bow-bend; the hurl and gliding
Rebuffed the big wind. My heart in hiding
Stirred for a bird--the achieve of, the mastery of the thing!
Brute beauty and valour and act, oh, air, pride, plume, here
Buckle! And the fire that breaks from thee then, a billion
Times told lovelier, more dangerous, O my chevalier!
No wonder of it; sheer plod makes plough down sillion
Shine, and blue-bleak embers, ah my dear,
Fall, gall themselves, and gash gold-vermillion.
Vale, June.

No comments:

Post a Comment