'Such contemplations, alien to her once, fill Felicia’s day. She seeks no meaning in the thoughts that occur to her, any more than she searches for one in her purposeless journey, or finds a pattern in the muddle of time and people, but still the thoughts are there. Alone, no longer a child, no longer a girl, with the insistence of the grateful she goes from place to place, from street to street, binding her feet up, wet by rain that penetrates her clothes, frozen when there is ice on the gutter puddles. By day the clouds scutter or hardly move, or crowd away the sun in shades of grey, or blackly advance in bunched-up density, like ominous monsters of the sky. They’re there again in wind-blown tails of smoke, in big white bundles soft as down, in scarlet morning streaks. Sometimes all day there is an empty blue, hazy with mist or cleanly bright, backdrop for spindly winter trees, and backdrop again for summer greenery. At night, there is a city’s afterglow. There is a happiness in her solitude at dawn.'

  'There will be charity and shelter and mercy and disdain; and always, and everywhere, the chance that separates the living from the dead.'


William Trevor, Felicia’s Journey, publisher: Penguin Books

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