I’ve spent so much of my life dreaming of homes I cannot afford | Deborah Levy

I’ve spent so much of my life dreaming of homes I cannot afford | Deborah LevyMay 8, 2021

In this extract from Real Estate, the final instalment of Deborah Levy’s ‘living autobiography’ series, she reflects on fantasy properties, empty nests and the relationship between property and freedom

I walked to Central Park. It had suddenly become warm and I was so jet lagged I thought I might faint. I found a place near the entrance to the park under a tree and collapsed on to the grass. Lying on my back, looking up at the big American sky between the leaves, I saw something hanging from the branches. It was a key. A key on a red ribbon that someone had hung on a branch and forgotten to take with them. I wondered if they had deliberately left it behind because they were never going to return to wherever the key belonged. Or perhaps they wanted to close a door on a chapter of their life and leaving the key behind was a gesture of this desire. There is always something secret and mysterious about keys. They are the instrument to enter and exit, open and close, lock and unlock various desirable and undesirable domains.

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