Looking back, these things run together. St Louis to Florida in one long drive; nervous on cheerful edge from a car full of archivists. Iowa is hilly, St Louis is rolling; Florida is strange. Flat, and strange: set design by Theodore Geisel. Trees cartooned into unearthly shapes, and talk (talk talk) from the back seat. Friendly  talk, but weighty.

In Florida, a balcony. Sliding glass doors, a baseball game on tv. We are, mercifully, alone: they have left to go touristing when the phone rings. Out of the ac and into the heat: voice thin in my ear. Dead: a country away, and dead.

Already cremated when I arrive, a climate farther north. Pictures, and a smooth golden box etched with four names. No humidity here: somehow it is a dry month. Eulogies and anger.