Ho Wai-On 何蕙安 aka Ann-Kay Lin

John David Morley to Me

John David Morley was an English writer and novelist, the youngest child of the artist and sculpter Patricia Morley (née Booth), and grandson of Victor Booth, who was a piano professor at the Royal Academy of Music.  He had written ten novels, including the bestseller Pictures from the Water Trade.  

我與大衛:約翰大衛摩利(我叫他大衛)是英國作家,周遊什廣但多居德國,會英、德、法、日等多種語言。所寫小說評價高及包括𣈱銷書,亦參與舞台戲劇工作。我在他十八、九歲時見過他兩次,那時他立志做詩人,我送他《紅樓夢》英譯本。我認識他姐姐和母親,不時會聽到他的消息和不平凡的人生,與他間有通訊。我寄給他我那十萬字關於以粵劇概念來創作跨文化多元演出的博士論文電子版,萬萬沒想到他居然看了,‭把附件‭ (‬包括粵劇錄音錄影‭)‬也聽了看了,然後寫了詳細的評論。跟著的一年他寫了頗多電郵給我,給予我很多文化、藝術、創作和思想方面的啟發和激發。那時候他的身體不好,還要獨力照顧他那年老多病的多年愛侶,心力交瘁,很少與人交往了。2018年初,收到他電郵,那時我不精神,隔了點時間才回覆,後來才知道我回復時,他與一生深愛的女人一同離世。這麼多年來,彼此都知道彼此的存在,卻是在他生命最後的一年多才有交流。大衞學識淵博,文筆好,內容豐富,我把一些他寫給我的分享。


John David Morley (David) died on 18th February 2018, alongside the lady who he was devoted to, his soul mate, and for whom he had been caring for many years in her old age.  Though I guessed this might happen from reading his novel Ella Morris, I was still taken by surprise on hearing the sad news. His last email to me was on 7 January 2018 (included in the collection below). I was not feeling well at the time. When I finally managed to reply, it was on 18 February – not knowing that was the day he died. Increasingly I feel the loss of him.  

I met David only twice, both times before he was twenty. His mother, the artist and sculptor Patricia Morley (who painted two portraits of me), told me that he wanted to be a poet and I gave him an English translation of the Chinese Classical novel "Dream of the Red Chamber" as Christmas present. Then I corresponded with him briefly at about the time I completed Music is Happiness (CD & book), of which he wrote a generous comment.  It was again very generous of him to write so much to me from 2017 to his death while according to his words, the nursing of his love had become so demanding that he no longer had the time for many of his friends and for his own pursuits. We shared experiences of our respective cross-cultural backgrounds.  I began to get to know him as a person, and admired his talents and in depth knowledge of so many things. I enjoy reading his English, which I find beautiful.

David said to me in July 2017: "Meanwhile my writing days are over... the spark which ignites a writing project has remained extinguished, and I don’t miss it..."  This might be lethal for a creative person and I prayed that somehow the spark would return.  He discussed with me my work, his work, other people's work, performing arts, the cross-cultural, creation of drama and especially written drama... and on other topics such as love. He gave me intellectual and creative stimuli that I so badly needed. It is difficult knowing there will be no more.

David was the spark that ignited my aspiration in projects yet to be accomplished.  The following list may be of interest to those who know him or want to know him, and to the creative –  a reason for my website is to provide creative materials/inspiration for others.

Click the blue numeral to enter respective page:

1.  What's in a cheep?: John David Morley's last email to me

2.  J D Morley's response to my autobiographical creative PhD

      (with Ho Wai-On's reply)

3.  J D Morley's critical comments

      (with Ho Wai-On's reply)

4.  J D Morley: Some more POVs on cross-cultural  (must read!)

5.  John David Morley: 3 Times Too Many?

6.  John David Morley to Ho Wai-On  –  on miscellaneous (1)

7.  John David Morley to Ho Wai-On  –  on miscellaneous (2)

8.  John David Morley to Ho Wai-On  –  Love and Buddhist Text

      (with Ho Wai-On's replies)

9.  First Lines – John David Morley's reply to Ho Wai-On