#scotlitfest exclusive: Sometimes A River Song by Avril Joy.

Sometimes-A-River-SongThis week, Linen Press Books have given us a look at the prologue of their new title  Sometimes A River Song by Avril Joy, which is published on April 27th. For more information on the book, visit their website, and keep reading for the sneak peek below!

Sometimes A River Song – Avril Joy
Linen Press Books

Extract: Prologue

River in our blood. Ain’t nothing we can do about it. Ain’t nothing even if we be minded which we ain’t seeing as river be our blood, our breath, our being too. River our country, our voice. Loud in the fossil mountains where the bobcats hide and it go rushing over rock and boulder, past clay Bluff and willow bar, through hickory and pine. Hush when it get to wandering in the grass and the cotton fields, grow fat and lazy like the silver eel. River always changing. Never still.

Winter come, it be the colour of fishes’ skin, hiding in ice. We hiding too, coats and quilts, and wind from the north eating our bones. Spring be green of leaf and blossom, blue smoke rising from the burning prairie and we all out fishing and planting. Come summer, river shrink, mayfly and mosquito swarm. No one walking barefoot for fear of snakes and everyone praying for rain. Autumn follow in mist, hang like a spirit on the water.

River bind and shape us all, body and soul. River the skin we wear. We swimming in its pools, roaming in forest and swamp. Know its every mood, every whisper. Haunting in the ghost tree, bark of the mud cat, cry of the lone wolf. River fever be our fever. River thirst, our mouths dry, and we all praying for a hard rain. River be one of us. Live beside it and live on it. River our home, only home we know.

There be a dozen or so boats, moored in the Creek. River rats is what the townsfolk call us and they don’t mean good by it.

Even though we be their white brothers and sisters they call us low down, crawling, because we ain’t sleeping and waking and eating and living on dry land. They forgetting there be work on the water, diving and mussel hauling, button factory and cannery. There be hunting and fishing, packing in ice, timber rolling and logging, barges and paddle steamers. But right now with the land turning to dust around us, the crops failing and folk going hungry, when there be no work, and they say we be passing through a great depression, river look like the best place to be.

Boat rest on the cypress logs, drift and bob with the current that come up Creek. Morning, wake to dawn light, brush of oar on water, soft splash of the jumping bullfrog, songbird and dragonfly skittering across the sky. Night fall, day drain from the world, stars spill and vapours rise. We sleep to the lull and rock of moving water, think on the journey, source to sea. Think on the new day. For there always be a new day.

River don’t run in a straight line, ain’t one thing forever. It change course, make itself over. Always moving on. Bringer of life, taker of life. We born on the river and we die by the river. That’s what daddy say. I belong to the river and I belong to him and he will do with me as he see fit.

More on Sometimes A River Song.
Follow Avril Joy on Twitter.

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