2 Aunts remember Polly

Sarah Feinmann recalls her niece

This picture pops up each year of Polly from 8 years ago.  It always reminds me of her warmth, humour and  generosity, making a connection across a crowded room.

he thing that Polly and I shared was our love of art and particularly John Piper who had a strong association with St Davids where Rhys is from.   I remember seeing that there was a huge retrospective of John Pipers work at the Towner Gallery in  Eastbourne which I was desperate to see.  I had arranged to go with Jane and then Polly and the girls joined us. It was all a bit fraught on the journey on crowded tubes and trains on a boiling hot day with Rosie in her pushchair.  We had a wonderful day, the exhibition more than living up to expectations and fabulous to share the wonderful collages and stained glass that she hadn’t seen before.

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Mary Chuck remembers Polly

I picture my niece

always wearing a base-ball cap after the chemo

with a big smile and bright colours; 

you said you’d never seen her in a baseball cap

and sometimes she got quite cross.

Journalist, mother, academic,    survivor,

intense, knew her own mind,

finally came to like her hair short.                      

She said ‘Thank you, 

but I manage best not talking about it.’  

‘I will live my own way.’

So I never asked her ‘What if…?’

I remember how she laughed, 

the way she watched her children, 

watched how others behaved with them, 

watched to be sure that one didn’t get 

more attention than the other.

Meeting in the Gallery, it was the display of Russian manuscripts she wanted to see, and that one particular manuscript because 

it showed how those that had been in control had lost that control and that, despite the revolution and the anger, the end was quite peaceful.  And life went on, there and elsewhere.