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the smell of old stone

Updated: May 21, 2023

Church Graveyard, Barfleur, Normandy - photo by author ©

often do I come here to rest my hands on these time-tilted tombs cracked and yearning for more moss more moss and forever slanting into days gone by their chiselled names and dates now all but faded yet I’ll pay my respects

 — to god knows whom — 

and when I pull away my hands they’ll smell of mortality the smell of old stone


The smell of old stone — I was born and raised in it. Somewhere in the first half of the nineteenth century, a young boy with not a penny to his name, destined for a precarious life as a day labourer, thumbed his snotty nose at fate and got himself apprenticed to a master mason.

Henceforth, stone would be his life, and that of his sons, grandsons and great-grandson, my father.

Four generations, and the smell of old stone has trickled into the blood, and growing up among tombstones makes you write about tombstones, and about life’s precious lessons that are taught and cast in stone.

Below are the links to some of my previous "blue stone memories" from my blog. Some of you may have read these when they were first posted last year, but for those of you who haven't, sometimes, a fulfilling read is only a click away. Enjoy!

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