The Gloaming


A warm, sunlit courtyard in the late afternoon, under a flapping canopy, in view of a body of water, preferably with a selection of colourful painted boats to critique bobbing around on it.  A small round table with enough empty chairs to put your feet up on one, laden with a glistening jug of iced water, a selection of pistachios and olives in small white dishes, a plate of ham, a bit of orange melon, a glass of Campari and soda with a big wedge of blood orange, a beer, a cigarette. People begin to drift in, wind-swept, radiant, skin glowing. A long-winded, wildly competitive game involving the first 10 seconds of every song, descending into triumphant shrieks and slaps. Another beer, another cigarette. The incoming promise of supper – something that someone just hauled out of the sea. Music in the background, Dean Martin, something from the Goodfellas soundtrack, or some unexpectedly 80s synth that you didn’t choose but can’t possibly be bettered. Goat bells far away. Bits of white linen fluttering in the distance. Open windows. Beaded curtains, random kittens slipping past. The light slowly melting away. Memories of wandering hazily, contentedly lost through a pomegranate grove. What was formerly impressionist landscape is now in inky black silhouette against luminescent blue grey sky. The gloaming.