An Island on the Edge

As she squats alone on the floor of her one-room hut, untwisting and retying a torn fishing net, it becomes clear that Rosa Nobert, 43, shares her days with the dead. The walls are hung with faded photographs: her husband, shot and burned in his fishing boat by the Sri Lankan navy; her two nephews, Tamil Tiger guerrillas killed in battle; and 17 relatives, including 13-year-old daughter May Linda, washed away by the tsunami. As Sri Lanka once more flirts with civil war, Rosa expects she will soon be adding one more picture to her gallery of ghosts: her 23-year-old son,...

Want the full story?

Subscribe Now


Get TIME the way you want it

  • One Week Digital Pass — $4.99
  • Monthly Pay-As-You-Go DIGITAL ACCESS$2.99
  • One Year ALL ACCESSJust $30!   Best Deal!
    Print Magazine + Digital Edition + Subscriber-only Content on

Learn more about the benefits of being a TIME subscriber

If you are already a subscriber sign up — registration is free!