Working on the Wall

Working on the Wall

Patrick and Stephanie worked tirelessly for years to repair and reconstruct the stone walls of their place in Deia.  It was done without concrete, by Mallorquin standards. He told me that each rock must touch its neighbors in five places. I came across this picture in the same place I found several old letters.


A story Patrick sent to me on 13 March 2015.

In the kitchen preparing breakfast I have bacon on medium heat, abiding by Steinbeck’s advice to cook it slowly, a couple of eggs at the ready, abiding by my own rule never to put eggs in the refrigerator, and humming to myself to cover the absence of anyone to share the morning, I hear noises up behind the house. For a moment my subconscious believes it is the person I jokingly call my bitter half, finishing her meditation, my signal to start the toast, but it takes only a second to remember that can’t be so, she having departed the earth a while ago.

It is over a year since I have taken the hatchet and saw to the brush and brambles blocking the way to the water deposits and beyond those, Continue reading “Ashes”

I Would Not Like to Grow Old without Knowing My Children

Here’s a two page letter from 17 February 1979 that Patrick sent to Gretchen, myself, and another sister, in which he describes the work that he and Stephanie have been putting into their house, and the music, and the writing. He also adds observations about each of us and how he longs for us to visit.

The letter concludes with a powerful final paragraph, including Continue reading “I Would Not Like to Grow Old without Knowing My Children”