Obituaries: Other lives: Winifred Dawson

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Date: Aug. 30, 2014
Publisher: Guardian News & Media
Document Type: Obituary
Length: 529 words
Lexile Measure: 1260L

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Byline: Ann Thwaite

Winifred Dawson, who has died unexpectedly aged 85 after a stroke, was much loved and will always be remembered for one early relationship. As a young woman in Belfast in the 1950s, Winifred inspired five of Philip Larkin's poems - more than did any of the other women in his life. The "sweet girl-graduate" (in Lines on a Young Lady's Photograph Album) was also the subject of Latest Face and of Maiden Name (with "its five light sounds"), of He Hears That His Beloved Has Become Engaged and, written on the day of her wedding, Long Roots Moor Summer to Our Side of Earth.

"How beautiful you were," Larkin wrote, "and near, and young." His new biographer, James Booth, describes a "romantic friendship". Larkin would have liked it to...

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Gale Document Number: GALE|A380735234