Maddie, Paddington 1981, the news

Last night’s news has altogether discombobulated me. I keep seeing her in my mind’s eye, more helpless than the possums in my ceiling, more helpless even than my little boy brothers, in a trap of her own hapless making. After the letter last week, it’s almost too much to bear, too many signs all saying the same thing. I am too old for this. I want to die quietly in my sleep. It turns out this is quite a lot to ask of the Lord, who knows every hair on your head and could pluck them all out at once if the mood took him.

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