Grudge match – Ernest Rutherford vs Katherine Mansfield – who are New Zealanders most proud of? K.M.’s got a House but she didn’t win a Nobel Prize, Ernest’s on the $100.00 bill but he didn’t do his best work on the French Riviera thereby allowing other New Zealanders to do the same.
Do the Menton fellows have an opinion? I didn’t ask them but I hope they’d pick a Modernist over a Physicist any old time.
Do they feel any pressure to live up to “I seen the little lamp” – one of the great lines in literature – when they put pen to paper in Menton? Do they actually do any writing at the Villa Isola Bella ? Some did, some didn’t, apparently there have been “some rum ones” but these Fellows were all on their best behaviour as they shared a favourite piece of Mansfield’s writing and in some cases talked about what they wrote while they were there.
Bill Manhire – Daughters of the late Colonel, wrote Lifted
Tessa Duder – read the Claire Tomalin and Joanna Woods Mansfield biographies – wrote Is she still alive?
Stephanie Johnson – Bliss, The woman at the store – wrote the first draft of The shag incident and of the play Strange children
Roger Hall – Daughters of the late Colonel
Russell Haley – At the Bay