She is a mature woman of about fifty seven, slightly above medium height, with rather short, thin grey hair and with a wispy, close to indiscernible, moustache and beard. She dresses decently, even fashionably for a woman of her station, but not particularly elegantly or with any semblance of femininity; at first glance she looks a little round shouldered and awkward, though in fact she is not round shouldered at all, moreover curved inwards towards her centre, arching her shoulders to compensate for the imbalance of posture and rather slight and yet somehow forceful in her manner. She seems to be a sort of robot, and yet upon further examination her manners appear extremely agreeable and her conversation always to the point.
No one could say that she was hideous, but no one with seeing eyes could enjoy her face. Her head is elongated at the back and somewhat rounded at the sides, so that her face looks rather reminiscent of a chimpanzee. The skin of which seems stretched over her skull like a mask, perhaps taken from a corpse, aching for decay but not yet allowed its natural demise to dust. Her forehead is wide and short, but her features rather crow like; her eyes are cold and unfeeling, even demonic when glaring, her nose pronounced and pointed, her lips long and thin. She looks a little ill, but only seems to. She has wrinkles on each cheek below the lip line and near her cheek bones, which makes her look like a woman who had just recovered from a serious illness. And yet she is perfectly well and strong, and she has never been ill.
She walks and moves about very hurriedly, but she is in no hurry to go anywhere. It seems as though nothing could embarrass or ruffle her; she remains the same in any situation and in any society. She possesses a great deal of stone rather than blood in her physical constitution, but she is completely unaware of it herself. With wretched regularity she augments her sophistry with palsy gesticulation of the right hand, which is raised, waved slowly, tentatively up and down absent of natural rhythm, a lever designed to inspire sensations of solidarity with hands which dance and prance.
She talks calmly and stoutly; but at the same time nervously as if constantly needing to remind herself of the tutelage of her enunciation master, and she is never at a loss for sternness or horrific attempts to smile with satisfaction and validation of her assertions beyond reproach. Her thoughts are unwavering, beyond question or adjustment for all her hurried appearance, precise and final – and that is particularly noticeable. Her articulation is amazingly clear; her words fall from her barely visible lips like large, smooth slowly rolling boulders, always carefully chosen and always at your service. At first you can not help liking it, but later on you hate it, and just because of her too clear enunciation, of this string of ever ready words, long ago prepared and practised. You somehow can not help feeling that she must have a sort of peculiarly shaped tongue in her head, a sort of unusually long and thin one, very red and with an exceedingly sharp and incessantly and uncontrollable active tip.
In short, she appears as a failed actress at the casting for The Witches, deemed too cruel, too vicious, too close to horrid and uncompromising to play any role but that of a terminator coded in rhetoric.
There is another choice of candidate, a certain Mr Corbyn, a long standing local official, who used to frequent the back benches. He bears some resemblance to Obi-Wan Kenobi, though he is also apparently his complete opposite in every respect. But he too, is a ‘wise man’. He is a pathetic and exceedingly quiet chap, and as a matter of fact in his early fifties, well educated, but chiefly self taught. He is moderately well off financially, married, has a job in the civil service, and supports an aunt and sister in law as well as a multitude of charitable endeavours.
Corbyn himself is a man of quite remarkable purity of heart, and, indeed, I rarely encounter a man of such honesty and passionate convictions. ‘never, never, will I abandon these bright hopes’ he has often said to friends, with shining eyes. Of those ‘bright hopes‘ he always speaks quietly, with deep feeling, in half a whisper, as though in secret. He is rather tall, but extremely thin, and with narrow shoulders and extraordinarily twig-like hair of a formerly jet black yet now solely grey tint. All gibes at some of his opinions he accepts meekly, but sometimes he answers very seriously, and often nonplusses the speaker.
Many would find his outline and slow, gentle movements innocuous; a lost, well-meaning grandfather seeking his glasses, and taking a seat merely because he needs a rest and its comfortable, even when he is to speak about matters of huge importance, to his career and the world he wishes to improve. His head is impressively lengthy, his face lacking any prominent features though hints of rodent can be noted by the more prone to finding wrong where none could ever blossom, despite which emanating a sense of calm. His somewhat oversized forehead defies the spiritual balance, yet not with such vigour to offset the overall impression of a yogi; his eyes are small yet never less than wide open and prone to enliven with hope, even when meeting abuse and attempts to unsettle. He looks frail, but his words, whilst delivered with wildly varied vigour, never fail to reveal echoes of inner strength and conviction.
Essentially, his qualities are unerring integrity, calmness and especially patience…patience with a world set against his noble ideals, which he has finally found chance to expound and express on a grand stage.
(NB. Rather than wail and whine and find myself embracing the horror of the ubiquitous attacks on Jeremy Corbyn I thought it might be interesting to use some of Dostoyevsky’s The Devils as a framework, then combine with my own observations of the two candidates as I watched the Andrew Neil interviews…conjure the great man back to life, at least in words! An experiment of sorts.)