Garden #1, 2013

After eight o’clock, Sambourne was eerily silent. No teenagers congregated outside the shops. No one shouted. There was virtually no traffic. The sky was massive and the smell of slowness – leaf mould and old stone, mainly – seemed to pervade the whole village. Jenny followed the shadowed path past St. Mary’s to the shrine. The shrine to the Virgin was lit by fluttering nightlights. Flowers had been laid on the ground, and a few around the image of the Virgin. Scrawled messages had been pinned to its wooden surround. Can you help me? Jenny said to the object. She shifted her weight from one pinched, aching foot to the other, and fixed her gaze on Mary’s image. The wind moved the branches of the trees, so that they rattled against each other, but other than that there was no sound. Jenny felt nothing. The image wasn’t even interesting to look at. She was on her own.

Garden #2, 2013

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Garden is the third track on The Fall’s 1983 album, Perverted by Language. It’s nonsensical, but poetry of the highest order, set to urgent, pounding, repetitive music. I strongly urge you to seek it out.

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