She came about five minutes later and sat at a table opposite him and closer to the wall, her back to the sea. Slim, not particularly tall, auburn hair, close-cropped, rather more studious than beautiful. Strong-featured. Or was it sharp-featured? A blend. In black jeans, a black jacket. Silver bracelet on a slender wrist.
A young woman and an older man meet by accident – a gust of wind – at a restaurant in Trieste and find themselves dining together. They embark upon a conversation of the kind that can perhaps only happen between total strangers – risky, philosophical, full of the most intimate stories and confessions. She has questions. He finds, as the wine flows, delicious dishes come and go, and the velvet night deepens, that he doesn't have as many answers as he might have thought he had.
About the Author
David Brooks has published several collections of poetry, short fiction and essays, and three previous novels, The House of Balthus (1995), The Fern Tattoo (2007) and The Umbrella Club (2009). His work has been highly acclaimed, widely translated and anthologised, and shortlisted for the Miles Franklin, New South Wales Premier’s, Adelaide Festival and many other awards. In 2011 he published The Sons of Clovis: Ern Malley, Adoré Floupette, and a secret history of Australian poetry. He teaches Australian literature at the University of Sydney, is co-editor of the journal Southerly, lives in the Blue Mountains of New South Wales, and spends a small part of each year in a village on the sea coast of Slovenia.