The Weekend Australian - Travel - - TRAVEL & INDULGENCE -

‘I have of­ten dreamed of Siss­inghurst on fire. I am in the house, on the mid­dle floor, and above me the boards are cracking. The tiles are fall­ing away on the out­side. Smoke pours into the night. But there’s no rol­lock­ing, lick­ing flame. It’s more like a fun­gus erod­ing the tim­bers, a slow and in­ex­orable eat­ing away at the most pre­cious thing I know. As I see it burn­ing, I am sure I am dream­ing of the frame­work of my life rot­ting in the heat. It’s a form of dis­so­lu­tion, of a valu­able thing com­ing to an end. Siss­inghurst is the shape of what I am.’

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