Blum Books


How long have you been absent minded? As long as I can remember

by June Treister

Category : Poetry
Format : Paperback
ISBN : 978-0-9927822-0-7
Size : 148 x 210mm
Pages : 136
Published : December 2013
Publisher : Blum Books

These poems by June Treister, based on over 4,000 emails sent to her daughter between 2006 and 2013 after her retirement, recollect people, places and events from a childhood spent in 1930s Suffolk, working life in post WWII London, British seaside resorts of the 1960s, travels in America, Africa and Europe from the 1970s onward and daily life in North London to the present day. Food and supermarkets, an enthusiasm of her late husband, the Polish Jew and French Resistance Operative, Maksymilian Treister (1912-2012), are a recurrent theme.

Readers will delight in Treister's juxtapositions of the everyday and the absurd, the enchantment and distress of travel, and in a natural humour resulting from circumstances often beyond her direct control.


June Treister (née June Mary Scott) was born in Ipswich, Suffolk in 1927, daughter of Alice Joyce Lay and Basil Keeble Scott, grocer and provision merchant, whose father was headmaster of Wortham School. Although artistic she was unable to follow art as a career and entered the secretarial profession, first working in the Public Health Department of the East Suffolk County Council and afterwards the HQ of the Eastern Electricity Board. During WWII she was a member of the Girls Nautical Training Corps. In 1951 she moved to London taking a position as secretary to Maksymilian Treister who she later married, working with him as a company director in his electronics firm until their retirement in 2005. She has two children, a daughter Suzanne, an artist and a son Richard, a photographer. She lives in London.

Cover image: People in a Storm, June Treister, 1941