The Empty House

Someone appears to be living in the empty house on St David’s Road. I’ve seen a light on in an upper window (the lampshade is one of those circular paper ones so it looks like a floating moon), and it was on again this morning. A neighbour described the owner (a local property developer) to him as a ‘knob’. Small town feuds are rife around here, it seems.

I woke from a dream in which I was having a nightmare. You know the kind when you are trying to scream and you can’t form a sound. I was sleeping outside our front door and the outer door opened and a man walked in. I was terrified. He was all in white and looked like someone from a Bauhaus-designed ballet or dance. He was almost cubist in shape. He looked like a ghoul, a cubist ghoul on which the stage-paint had streaked. If I scream, I thought, perhaps he will go away. But he stayed, skulking in the corner of the hallway, staring at me.

He read out her text to me. Apparently he opened his eyes twice and squeezed the nurse’s hand. Will he regain consciousness? Will he be the same? His daughter thinks he will bounce back. He doesn’t. Let him not be in pain or distress.

By Ellen Bell

Artist and writer currently living in Aberystwyth.