Wait Until Evening by Henrietta Buckmaster (novel). The title comes from a quote from Sophocles’ Oedipus Rex: “One must wait until evening to see how splendid the day has been.” The title gives hope that the protagonist, Catherine Mills, will find solace at the end of her challenging ordeal. We are pulled into this story as Catherine stumbles in shock from a terrifying car ride and accident. The dark, foggy British heath is a match for the confusion in her mind as this American instinctively follows a light to a house where she might find another human. She is literally dumbstruck and has trouble remembering anything, including her own identity. Or maybe she’s just not talking. As clearer images distinguish themselves from the mist, we discover that she has put herself in the competent hands of a Danish chemist and that she came to England on a mission to help her son, who escaped from an explosion reminiscent of the Weatherman bombing of a house on 11th Street in Manhattan.
Catherine is a writer, and one of her reflections seems to me to represent Henrietta Buckmaster’s own thought about her writing. The Dane asks her why she is a writer:
“ ‘It’s me. It’s what I am, what I divine. What I reach for. It’s everyone I think about. It’s time and it’s no time. It’s the notches of my growth. It’s a way of giving and receiving that I
can’t do without.’ She moved abruptly and then sat down by the window, frowning at the wind. It’s a long journey to the beginning. It’s always a new birth. “