On a foul night in fickle early autumn, when the wind sobbed and wailed like a lost wandering wraith, Constance awoke from a garish dream, aghast to hear her garden crashing into the sea. It clattered down the cliff thud by thud into darkness, sodden by the pelting rain and bludgeoned by the gale.
Up at the farm, we kept an eye on our neighbour, so the next day I tracked through the glen to discover how she was. I remember the feral scent of the earth after rain – how that smell takes me back to that day. As I arrived, I saw Constance through a shroud of mist, waiting for me outside her house, wearing an ethereal smile; I remember thinking, ‘She looks frail’. How anyone could live here in such precariousness – crumbling in a cottage on a cliff edge, without electricity or gas, drawing water from a corroded pump, surviving in such isolation, always beggared belief, but especially someone of her age. Continue reading “Unturn This Stone by Aviva Treger”