Advent Calendar 20th December 2011: Mothering a boy

Page 168 in Michael Davidson’s The World, the Flesh and Myself:

In the middle of 1936 I was living in a mean room off the Camden Road. Here I was ‘mothering’ a boy called Ray, a truant from home or perhaps reformatory: a touching psychopathic creature who lied and stole and wetted the bed in which he lay until it was time to go to the ‘pictures’; but whose nature was so loaded with pathos and need for affection that one was filled with fondness and compassion.

Plenty of food cured the bed-wetting; but no amount of coddling could cure anything else; and one day he walked out, taking what little I had – luckily it was a day I’d taken my typewriter out.

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