Tuesday, 2 February 2010


This is my father when he was younger than I am now. In England, thinking about America...

Now, I am in America thinking about England. Not for the first time in my life.

When I was a boy, I remember my dad always had this book on his bedside table and I would never miss an opportunity to duck into his room to take a look at it, wondering what the story was, mesmerized by the woman on the cover. Every detail was like a mystery to me, from the lettering to the dark orange of the spine, from that Peguin logo to the vast and rather daunting array of words inside. Those red stockings she's wearing. Also that canvas and those paints she carries with her. But most of all I used to wonder where she was looking and what shw was looking at. Who did she see in that unseen sunset? Always, it made me nervous holding that book in my hands.

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