It’s going to sound odd to say that time spent with a man who knows he is dying is actually envigorating and shares life – but when the person is Clive James – well, it is.
This half hour radio interview is a relaxed chat, but because Clive is so curious about all of life, and has the richness of life from two hemispheres (Australia/England as well as left-brain/right-brain), it flows across many subjects. Even although the main topic is his most recent – allegedly last – book of poetry, Clive admits, somewhat shamefacedly, that he can’t resist continuing to write while he can, so another few have been written since “Sentenced to Life” was prepared for publishing.
This is that rare, delightful thing, where the interviewer (Kirsty Lang) lets the interviewee be himself, simply interjecting with interesting questions. It’s two smart people talking together, but in a gentle way which is not showing off. More than that, Clive is giving us a lifetime of wisdom, with good humour and wit, which is a glorious parting gift in what he ruefully admits is “a long goodbye”.