Into the Lamplight

“I was sitting in this same chair I am in at present one evening, when I heard a knock at the front door. I went myself to see who was there, and on opening the door saw my old friend P. Q. standing outside with his gun in his hand. I was surprised at seeing him, but asked him to come in and have something. He came inside the porch into the lamplight, and stood there for a few moments; then he muttered something about being sorry he had disturbed me, and that he was on his way to see his brother, Colonel Q., who lived about a mile farther on. Without any further explanation he walked away towards the gate into the dusk.

“I was greatly surprised and perplexed, but as he had gone I sat down again by the fire. About an hour later another knock came to the door, and I again went out to see who was there. On opening it I found P. Q.’s groom holding a horse, and he asked me where he was, as he had missed his way in the dark, and did not know the locality. I told him, and then asked him where he was going, and why, and he replied that his master was dead (at his own house about nine miles away), and that he had been sent to announce the news to Colonel Q.”

From the involuntary painting series ‘Apparitions At Or After Death’ after and out of the writings of St. John D. Seymour and Harry L. Neligan [1914]

Paul Conneally

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