Excerpt from Death of a Serpent, “On the Road to Palermo”
As the carriage picked up speed Serafina’s mind wandered to the days surrounding her mother’s illness, the news of her sister’s and cousins’ deaths on the same day, the family’s helplessness. Caskets lined the piazza, many of them flimsy boxes with ill-fitting lids slapped together. Nobles, merchants, peasants—no class escaped. And after the condolences, the funerals, the prayers in the cemetery came the agony of quarantine.
The memory pitched her once again into that flat, dead landscape Giorgio had called grief.