Dannie Abse was born in 1923 in Cardiff. Throughout his life he has combined careers of both doctor and writer. These are aspects of his life that, together with his Jewish background and Welsh nationality, are integral themes in his poetry. In addition to his writing his own poetry books -most recently Running Late - he has edited many poetry collections and has published both fiction and memoirs. The Presence is the moving diary he kept after the tragic death of his wife.