, ,

‘Sun do shine’, is how one source had it – though the reporter may have been hamming him up to appear suitably folksy. ‘The sun does shine’, is how others presented it – though they may have imposed grammatical correctness in order to achieve political correctness, i.e. to avoid accusations of having made him appear unduly folksy.

Either way, the speaker was Anthony Ray Hinton (59), who came back to life after 30 years on death row for a double murder he didn’t do.

(Two fast food restaurant managers shot and killed in Birmingham, Alabama, in 1985.)

On 3 April 2015, making his way through the media crowd, a dignified black man in a dark suit. We hear the ululations of his mother or sister as she falls on his neck.

But we don’t know which she is. Is she too folksy to figure in the official account? And was it one of those prisons where visitors and inmates mustn’t touch, making this their first embrace for 30 years? No one has found the time to find out.

Having rolled away the stone, releasing Anthony Hinton from three whole decades buried in a five by eight foot sepulchre provided by the state of Alabama, the public gaze has already moved elsewhere.

Leaving Hinton alone to get on with what’s left of his life, perhaps.

Either that, or sending him down again to the place where people are discounted; to thepurgatory which put him in the frame in the first place.