Friday, February 5, 2010

36. Closure

Henry and Marjorie had lived in ‘Strathmines’ for their entire married life – 63 years this coming May. Although his secondment to the RAF had ceased in August ’45, he did not receive his demob documents until the December. They had spent the summer inspecting modest terraces before stumbling upon the house of their dreams.

It was the garden that clinched it. Replete with dry-stone terraces, and scarlet geraniums tumbling from terracotta pots, it ran the full length of the northern wall supporting wild forsythia, native lilacs and espaliered sansanquas in a riot of colour and tangled branches. As one rounded the northern corner , the garden opened out to a whirl of manicured couch, fringed with trees laden with apricots, figs and almonds.

As they had nourished the garden, so the garden had nourished them. It broke their hearts to leave it, but both knew that the moment had arrived.


diane said...

A sad tale. It paints pictures in my head. It pulls at my inner string of fear. That will happen to us one day.

Joan Elizabeth said...

What is is about a quality gate that makes a place look up-market. In fact, the description of the garden seems a little too posh for a young couple buying their first home in the early post war period ... but not for one they created after they moved in. Just not sure from the story when the garden took shape.

Vicki said...

This riff really pulls on the heartstrings. Sad resignation.

Favourite line: “As they had nourished the garden, so the garden had nourished them.