10 May 1948 – 14 September 1998
4th April, 1999.
Dear Josh and Zoë,
The thing I remember about your mum, Hazel, was her serene nature. She was such a gentle person and had a great tolerance for people’s differences.
She wanted the best for both of you in every way. I remember when you were babies and visiting us, on would go the vegies to boil and out would come the "Baby Mouli" — no tinned baby food for you! She protected your bodies from the sun — dressing you in Lycra all-in-one bathing suits before they were popular, and never taking you to the beach when the sun was hottest.
Your mum was modest, a good cook, and artistic, as you know. She had a great sense of humour which is passed on to you from both parents.
Your mum was generous with presents and toys, especially at holiday times. Hazel bought toys that would educate, stimulate and encourage you physically.
Although, Zoë, she did not tolerate your "Barbie phase." I remember it well, and her wry smile. (She also dislike Tamagotchis.)
I never heard Hazel criticise anyone, or lose her temper. If you were naughty (as all children are from to to time) she would be reproachful rather than angry. She did raise her voice when concerned for your safety (Zoë’s going too near the edge of the waterfall). However, when you, Joshua, paddled out — and out of your depth — to see the stingray, she calmly brought you in to shore without asking for any help.
She had endless patience and a way of letting irritations wash over her.
So these are my memories
With love from
P.S. And she could sing! (You’ve both inherited that talent.)
10 April 1999
At last here are my memories of Hazel. I’m sitting outside on the swing chair at Sorrento.
Claude just landed at my feet and hopped across the verandah,
Have a great trip,
P.S. I was in St Martin-in-the-Fields when I saw the sonnet and the poem by Kahlil Gibran. They made me think of Hazel — thought you might like them.
Shall I compare thee to a summer’s day?
Thou art more lovely and more temperate:
Rough winds do shake the darling buds of May
And summer’s lease hath all too short a date:
Sometime too hot the eye of heaven shines,
And often is his gold complexion dimm’d:
And every fair from fair sometime declines,
By chance or nature’s changing course, untrimm’d:
But thy eternal summer shall not fade,
Nor lose possession of that fair thou ow’st,
Nor shall Death brag thou wander’st in his shade,
When in eternal lines to time thou grow’st:
So long as men can breathe, or eyes can see,
So long lives this, and this gives life to thee.
— Sonnet XVIII
All things shall melt away and turn into songs.
When spring comes
Even the stars
The vast snowflakes
That fall slowly
Upon the larger fields
Shall melt into
— Kahlil Gibran
Judy was Hazel’s sister-in-law.