House By The River
Broadcast: February 28, 1948
Added: Jul 17 2008
Stephen Burns was a poet who’d found fame and fortune early and lives richly in comfort and adulation and who at 35 was already being compared with Keats and Shelly. He had in a few slender volumes made himself the voice and conscience of all England. His home standing on the banks of the Thames was known to a million Englishmen as the House by the River
. Here he lived in peace and contentment with his wife Marjorie and his brother John. Then on the evening of June 15th last summer while Marjorie was out of the house and John not yet home he tried to kiss the maid Emily and when she protests he tries to shut her up with his hands around neck but he goes too far and kills her. When his brother John arrives home from his work in London he helps him to dispose of her body by dumping her in the river in a sack. As they are rowing back to shore Stephen remembers that his name and address are on the sack. Later when a police officer turns up with the sack Stephen tells him that it was kept in the cellar and used for collecting kindling wood. He tells the officer that his brother John was in charge of collecting the wood putting him under suspicion.
It becomes impossible for the brothers to go on living as if nothing had happened and the differences between them becomes apparent. John is wracked with remorse and torn between wanting to protect his brother and Stephen tells him that since the murder he feels alive and he is going to write it all down in a poem, the story of two men the Black Knight and the White.
This is truly Suspense at its best.