Dorothy Parker : The Portable Dorothy Parker
A string of shiny days we had,
A spotless sky, a yellow sun;
And neither you nor I was sad,
When that was through and done.
The first time I died, I walked my ways;
I followed the file of the limping days.
Sorrow like a ceaseless rain
Beats upon my heart.
People twist and scream in pain-
Dawn will find them still again;
This has nrither wax nor wane,
Neither stop nor start.
Yesterday afternoon set in misty and cold. I had half a mind to spend it by my study fire, instead of wading through heath and mud to wuthering heights.
I thought, if I had caused the cloud, it was my duty to make an effort to dispel it. They could not every day sit so grim and taciturn; and it was impossible, however ill-tempered they might be, that the universal scowl they wore was their everyday countenance.
A high wind blustered round the house, and roared in the chimney: it sounded wild and stormy, yet it was not cold and we were all together.
I saw that they had never laid down, though it was past midnight; but they were calmer, and did not need me to console them. The little souls were comforting each other with better thoughts than I could have hit on: no parson in the world ever pictured heaven so beautifully as they did, in their innocent talk; and, while I sobbed, and listened, I could not help wishing we were all there safe together.
Catherine would not be persuaded into tranquillity. She kept wandering to and fro, from the gate to the door, in a state of agitation which permitted no repose; and at length took up a permanent position on one side of the wall, near the road; where, heedless of my expostulations and the growing thunder, and the great drops that began to plash around her, she remained, calling at intervals, and then listening, and then crying outright.
About midnight, while we sat up, the storm came rattling over the heights in fury. There was a violent wind as well as thunder, and either one or the other split a tree off at the corner of the building: a huge bough fell across the roof, and knocked down a portion of the east chimney-stack, sending a clatter of stones and soot into the kitchen fire.
He replied, glancing from me to the windows, which reflected a score of glittering moons, but showed no lights from within.
They sat together in a window whose lattice lay back against the wall, and displayed, beyond the garden trees and the wild green park, the valley of gimmerton, with a long line of mist winding nearly to its top (for very soon after you pass the chapel, as you may have noticed, the sough that runs from the marshes joins a beck which follows the bend of the glen). Wuthering heights rose above this silvery vapour; but our old house was invisible; it rather dips down on the other side. Both the room and its occupants and the scene they gazed on, looked wondrously peaceful.
It looked intelligent, and retained no marks of former degradation. A half-civilized ferocity lurked yet in the depressed brows and eyes full of black fire, but it was subdued; and his manner was even dignified; quite divested of roughness, though too stern for grace.
I turned directly and ran down the road as hard as ever I could race, making no halt till I gained the guide post, and feeling as scared as if I had raised a goblin.
I was ignorant to your miserable, degraded character, but I felt you were only partly responsible for that; and Catherine wishing to keep up your acquaintance, I acquised – foolishly. Your presence is a moral poison that would contaminate the most virtuous; for that cause, and to prevent worse consequences, I shall deny you hereafter admission into this house, and given notice now that I require your instant departure.
I felt that God had forsaken the stray sheep there to its own wicked wanderings, and an evil beast prowled between it and the fold,waiting his time to spring and destroy.
The sun shone yellow on its grey head, reminding me of summer; and I cannot say why, but all at once, a gush of child’s sensations flowed into my heart.
I gazed long at the weather-worn block, and, swooping down, perceived a hole near the bottom still full of snail shells and pebbles, which we were very fond of sorting there with more perishable things, and, as fresh as reality, it appeared that I beheld my early playmate seated in the withered turf: his dark, square head bent forward, and his little hand scooping out the earth with a piece of slate.
An arid wilderness of furze and whinstone.
I’ve fought through a bitter life since I last heard your voice, and you must forgive me, for I struggled only for you!