They begin an hour after darkness descends. Only sounds to start with. Most seem to come from behind me, but some feel deep, too deep, like they are exploding beneath my feet. Each sounds subtly different. Some remind me of my father breaking thick cardboard boxes apart across his raised knee. Some sound like my hard drive searching for a file, or a driver missing a gear.
and whine - last week’s ghosts
still lost and roaming
I don’t jump until the first flash. Twenty to six and vivid pink thrown against my eyes. Another reflects in the gloss painted parts of this room - as the door, the frame and the skirting boards white wink at me. I feel like the world has turned upside down and someone is hurling light beakers onto the black floor. Clocks of mercury shatter seconds before I hear the crash.
a shout - urgent,
excited or angry
And for an hour or two these annual effects punctuate my reading - dropping exclamation marks into an otherwise calm paragraph. I am centrally heated but surrounded by war cries and danger and the smell of regret.