So many wonderful writers, so little time. It is a good day when I discover a new to me writer of great refinement and subtle intelligence such as displayed in Alison Lock's short story "Ashes for Roses".
The story is from her debut collection Above the Parapet.
The story can be read through her web page so I will just talk about it briefly. The story centers on a brother and sister, living together in their deceased parents English house, in their sixties. They are both very into the cultivation of roses and are nearly self sufficient from the produce they grow. They quarrel a little as natural but basically they get along. An announcement comes on the radio. A volcano has erupted not to far away and will produce dangerous fumes and huge volumes of ash.
The brother and sister are both getting ready for the county flower show, planning to win. Suddenly the sister realizes the ash will destroy her roses. The story takes a very interesting and exciting turn and I will leave it for you to enjoy and ponder over. Her prose is very carefully wrought.
Lock lets us see with just a few sentences into the dynamics of the family and into the long ago past. We wonder if either sibling ever married.
I relished this story so much I read it three times. I am greatly looking forward to reading Lock's Above the Parapet.
Just click the above link to go right to the story.
Alison Lock is a poet and writer of short fiction. Her first collection, A Slither of Air, was published as a result of winning the Indigo Dreams Poetry Collection Competition 2010. She has recently published a collection of short stories entitled, Above the Parapet. She has an MA in Literature Studies from York St John University.
Alison has kindly agreed to do a Q and A session so look for that soon.