Last Days - a recollection
Just after I started a Liverpool Uni I heard Spike was in a
convent hospital nearby. One day in early 1980 (i think) I went
to see him. We all probably recall him him as some huge, loud,
larger than life bloke who never shut up and, who was very keen
on giving anyone who stepped out of line '6 of the best' with the
cat o 3 tails leather strap.
In the hospital, he was a shadow of his former self. He was thin and quiet. It was a one sided converasation. The only difference this time was I was doing all the talking. He was too ill to respond.
I tried to tell him how his students had progressed and moved on to bigger and better things but whether he had any idea about who or what I was talking is probably very doubtful.
It was a desperately sad final image of a once powerful man.
He died a few weeks later.
I do not know where I
[letter to Mark Brennan]