5By natural genius she was a climber. Up the side of her ten-foot run-wire she whizzed; her long-clawed feet scarce seeming to seek toe-hold in the ladder of meshes they touched. Like a cat, she sped upward.
"Make one little peep and your windbag will spring a leak," Georges said. "Very few historical figures have accomplished anything important after their throats were cut."
“No, no,” she replied in distressed tones, “I should have been glad to hear of it, but I can not enjoy being an eye-witness to such a terrible scene!”
"Listen to me, dear," she said, with her clear eyes fixed on her mother's face, and her voice, though softened to a tone of the utmost tenderness, firm and decided. "You must never forget that I know exactly what and how much you feel, and that I share it all" (there was a forlornness in the girl's face which bore ample testimony to the truth of what she said) "when I tell you, in my practical way, what we must do. You remember, once, then, you spoke to me about the Creswells, and I made light of them and their importance and influence. I would not admit it; I did not understand it. I had not fully thought about it then; but I admit it now. I understand it now, and it is my turn to tell you, my dearest mother, that we must be civil to them; we must take, or seem to take, their offers of kindness, of protection, of intimacy, as they are made. We cannot afford to do otherwise, and they are just the sort of people to be offended with us irreparably, if we did not allow them to extend their hospitality to us. It is rather officious, rather ostentatious; it has all the bitterness of making us remember more keenly what they might have done for us, but it is hospitality, and we need it; it is the promise of further services which we shall require urgently. You must rouse yourself, mother; this must be your share of helpfulness to me in the burden of our life. And, after all, what does it matter? What real difference does it make? My father is as much present to you and to me in one place as in another. Nothing can alter, or modify, or soften; nothing can deepen or embitter that truth. Come with me--the effort will repay itself."
“Si, si, mon ami, it is a pity that you study not the psychology. She told you that the letters were destroyed? Oh, la la, never does a woman destroy a letter if she can avoid it! Not even if it would be more prudent to do so!”
The whole of the present system is riddled with discontents. One factor is the enhanced sense of the child in middle-class life: the old sentiment was that the parent owned the child, the new is that the children own the parents. There has come an intensified respect for children, an immense increase in the trouble, attention and expenditure devoted to them—and a very natural and human accompaniment in the huge fall in the middle-class birth-rate. It is felt that to bear and rear children is the most noble and splendid and responsible thing in life, and an increasing number of people modestly evade it. People see more clearly the social service of parentage,
“Oh no—not all; we never quarrel.”
brutally, caught younger—so young that she had had no time to think—she began forthwith to bear babies, rear babies, and (which she did in a quite proportionate profusion) bury babies—she never had a moment to think. Now the wife with double the leisure, double the education and half the emotional scope of her worn prolific grandmother, sits at home and thinks things over. You find her letting herself loose in clubs, in literary enterprises, in schemes for joint households to relieve herself and her husband from the continuation of a duologue that has exhausted its interest. The husband finds himself divided between his sympathetic sense of tedium and the proprietary tradition in which we live.详情 ➢
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