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reality imagined

In fiction, reality imagined is often more real than reality itself; over the mere fact of things, as Wallace Stevens declared in his poem Puella Parvula, “The mighty imagination triumphs / like a trumpet …”
John Banville July 1 2017

The semi-conscious fellow Strapps and Neill were observing was also being watched by a man standing on the road. He thought it a fortunate coincidence to see a man in such a situation because not far away he had a body that needed disposal.
The drunk was woken up after Strapps and Neill left. He too left the beach.
Later that night a body was taken from a nearby house, loaded into a car and driven to the beach, unloaded and carried to the same spot by the steps the drunk had occupied. The body had abrasions between the knuckles on its right hand, a Tamam Shud slip in its pocket and the book it was torn from had been put back into the bookshelf it was taken from.


….. part fiction, part truth. Buy one for a friend.

 

8 Comments Post a comment
  1. There was a pathway leading down to the beach just a few metres to the left of the crippled children’s home. Those children In wheelchairs used that path.

    July 1, 2017
  2. If that was the path used to transport SM to the beach, would it tie into the witness report to O’Doherty, GC?

    July 2, 2017
  3. I think it would tie in. There is a 1949 photo I have taken from the beach just opposite to where Ferris Avenue joins The Esplanade. In the pic you can see shrubs to the right leading up to the road and a pathway. If you had the choice of lifting someone down some steps or down a pathway which would you choose? The pathway being adjacent to the side of the road would also provide some cover.

    In another photo, there is a changing hut shown close to the Esplanade, this photo was taken in the severe storm of April 1948. It is not easy to pinpoint the precise location of the hut but you can make out the jetty at Glenelg in the distance. Changing huts and sheds were common along the beach from Brighton to Glenelg in that era but no mention is made of them in the Police files. Was the hut near the steps? I don’t honestly know but it would have been close to Somerton Beach.

    I will dig both pictures out.

    July 3, 2017
  4. Byron Deveson #

    Gordon, there is an aerial photo that shows the area where SM was found. It is the last photo in a run taken over Adelaide in the late 1930s. Unfortunately the area of interest is at the end of the run so there isn’t a stereo pair to help things. I saw the photo in the Australian National Library 10+ years ago. ANL hold the paper prints and I assume they would know who hold the original negatives.

    July 3, 2017
  5. Byron, Yes, I believe I saw the same image. When was the Children’s Home built? I understood it was 1937?

    July 3, 2017
  6. …. about 1880, by the Bickfords

    July 3, 2017
  7. Ah! It became the Crippled Children’s Home in 1937?

    July 3, 2017
  8. 1938 … Prof Cleland had a professional interest in polio and may have visited the home as part of his research.

    July 4, 2017

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