“Madeleine’s Ghost,” by Robert Girardi, and a perfectly beguiling book for Halloween

41Y1poLCr3LStones are falling from the ceiling of my apartment. First one, then two, then dozens. I take refuge beneath the kitchen table as they bounce and dance across every surface, denting the toaster, gouging into the old linoleum floor. The Falling Stones are like a rain of hail, but so absurd in this setting that I want to laugh…

It is about two in the afternoon, Tuesday, mid-June, with the sun hot on my back and the sky seared and brown-looking above the island. The collar of my shirt is soaked with sweat. Just a block away the Manhattan Bridge creaks ominously in the heat, its abutments age blackened and massive as pyramids. I am wearing an unseasonable tweed jacket, swamp green corduroy pants, a heavy powder blue oxford cloth button-down, and a regimental stripe tie—the only presentable outfit in my closet. I am shaved and sober and calling on Father Rose in the rectory of St. Basil’s Cathedral on Jay Street in Brooklyn…

Madeleine’s Ghost by Robert Girardi

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