May 19, 2011 § Leave a comment

If someone had asked, you’d say it was thirty or maybe forty yards visibility, and this road without edges only adds to the problem. It wasn’t like this down in the town – yes, the rain was being flung so hard that every drop fought back, but it was clear, at least; you could see the line of cars snaking off up the hill.

It was when you’d got up higher, onto the tops, that the tail lights were dissolving into the distance and you only just saw that sheep in time. It’d have dented the car, right enough, slow-moving cloud that it was. On another day you’d swoop  and reel along these roads, but today every curve is a question mark.

You see the cumulative glow of brakelights from a way back, punctuated as they are by blue lights pulsing like blood through veins. A man in dulled safety wear waves you on, towards a flooded section of road – you find yourself thinking that in this rain he’s only short of a sou’wester and a trawler – and it is as you’re negotiating the flood, deeper than you thought and likely to stall your car, that you see another car forlorn on its roof in the middle of the field. The fog makes it into a stuttering dream-image, barely understandable: why is it upside down, and so far from the road? You imagine the driver surprised by the water, stunned to find his car suddenly uprooted and skidding down the field as those dolorous sheep scatter to either side. Unbuckling and clambering out as uncertain as an astronaut returned to earth.


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