It began over dinner at gretel dunstan's when Clarke accompanied Ruth to Adelaide and continued through the Intervarsity festival of 75 when we realaly conencted. Clare was sydney for me, generous, ebullient and not so much larger than life but as large as life ought to be and so sadly isn't for most people. I came up to Sydney for the SUMS news years eve party and Clarke, immaculately attired walked striaght into the swimming pool. I don't think it was an accident. it might have been the start of new city for me but I set up the Melbourne Adelaide axis and my life here began,but it was enlivened by Clarke's visits and then as technology developed the emails. My visits to Sydney would always involve dinner with Clarke and sometimes with May and the others, and always CCSL on sunday mornings. I remember sitting with him outside the state museum here in Adelaide during one visit when he explained that his health wouldn't let him make any more trips. I had always counted on being able to see him when I came to Sydney, that of course isn't going to happen. Hist later emails to me were signed ' your cousin in the east'. A family that has Clarke is a family blessed indeed, a family that loses him has faced a great loss. The branch of that tree on which he hung is lighter now but bare of a great treasure.
What I remember of Clarke is not just generosity of waistline but generosity of spirit. That's it really. At Nuptial Fest in Canberra (my wedding to Anne at Easter in 1998) my speech included thanks to everyone who was there, for being there! Because actually turning up counts for more than sending best wishes. So, when I was invited to Clark's Memorial Service, I knew I'd be going. (I had been pleasantly surprised to find that Clarke wanted to come to Nuptial Fest, since I hadn't seen much of him since Me and My Shadow in 1977, but he explained that he'd been keeping track of me through Ewart Shaw, a mutual friend.) A couple of years ago I received this SMS message from Clarke 24/09/'08 I've just returned from the Con singing a 12-part piece (SSSSAATTTBBB) by one of their composition students. So many youngsters - felt like an IV almost! Clarke So here he is, 1. involved in choral music 2. helping out youngsters who need skilled singers for a composition exercise 3. still resonating with InterVarsity Choral Festival. and that's the Clarke I remember. Barry "Bazza" Gration P.S. It appears that I HAVE to choose an "icon", (whether I like it or not) so I've deliberately chosen one that's daft.
Sumptuous Sunday brunches at Paddington; a bottle of port shared, perhaps a bit too quickly, after a hard day’s work and Clarke sitting on a Fisher Price toy chair entertaining Tamara and Erika are memories I will always treasure.
Clarke was so good at getting into role. I can see him so clearly in a pale linen jacket and panama hat, swinging a cane as we walked (me on his arm) along Circular Quay. I was probably 18. I thought we looked like something from a Scott Fitzgerald novel.
The last time I saw him was at his and May's home 2 years ago when I managed to spend 3 weeks in Sydney looking after my mother, Gerri, while my family was overseas. In between, so many concerts and special events in the 70s and 80s including Tim's and my wedding in Sydney. Sometimes infuriating, sometimes a little patronising but always wonderful.
at a concert in the Great Hall at Sydney Uni when we were starting to organise Sydney IV - I knew his name and was trying to track him down to engage Macquarie (Uni) Music Makers in our quest to all have all (non-Music Dept) Uni choirs in Sydney involved. Don't know who introduced us.