By Raymond Williams
Whilst railwayman Harry expense all of sudden suffers a stroke, his son returns from London to the Welsh border village of his upbringing, and to his family's prior.
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Extra resources for Border Country (Library of Wales)
Up,’ the old man pointed. ’ Harry walked on without checking, though he had nodded to the old man. His fingers felt cut from the cord of the box-handle, and he could feel the strain of the weight under his shoulders. He went straight on and through the side-gate to the back door of Rosser’s house. ‘You knock,’ he said to Ellen, and she went past him and rapped with her knuckles on the bare wooden door. At first there was no answer, and she put down the frail and tapped at the nearest window. A voice called back, and in a moment the door was opened.
The following week, when he was on afternoons, he borrowed the wagon and fetched a load of old sleepers from the station, and dumped them beside the tank. Next morning he laid a 43 sleeper track from the dry, higher ground through the mud to the tank. Then, under the overflow, he dug a deep channel, and lined it three sleepers high on each side. Finally he cut stakes and fenced off the immediate area, against the cattle. It was four mornings’ work, and the water was still discoloured at the end of it.
They shook hands, and Morgan, though the smaller man, had the tighter grip. Tom Rees had prepared them for a man in mourning, but Morgan was easy, alert, confident. His face was small, with neat, regular features. The brown eyes were bright, the lips under the small black moustache full and red. The hair, a deep black, was tightly curled all over the crown, and came very low beside the small ears. ‘Glad to meet you, Harry. ’ ‘Aye,’ Harry nodded, looking slowly around the box. ‘Now, Morgan, it’s like this,’ Tom Rees said formally.