Thursday, January 23, 2014
Received from Professor Ronald Hutton, Bristol University UK:
I treasure Olivia for two qualities in particular. The first is historic: that she was the most outstanding example of somebody to link in person the two great twentieth-century ages of Celtic spiritual revival, that of W. B. Yeats and Robert Graves, and their generations, and that from the 1960s in which Olivia herself played such a prominent part.
The second is that, better than anybody whom I have ever met, she could sail through any situation and society with perfect composure. One morning in the East End, she and I went for breakfast in a very rough transport cafe. Every table was crowded out by hard-smoking, hard-swearing, beefy men. Within five minutes she had persuaded the nearest six of them to make places for us (two vacating chairs in the process), extinguish their cigarettes and clean up their language; and all done with nothing other than smiles on her part. I imagine that she had much the same effect on deities.