Saturday, April 25, 2009

A Reliable Wife

Then Catherine watched the angel rise into the dark night sky, his arms empty. Alice lay unredeemed, as inert as an abandoned doll. Catherine knew it was too late; there was an abandonment of hope. Her sister couldn't be saved.

p. 179

She might wound him, she might lie to him, and still he would do anything to hear one word of kindness from her lips, to feel his flesh touch her flesh without humiliation. He was willing to take the chance. And all this because she had stepped from the train with a small scarlet bird in a cage, and she was coming home to him, bringing a fluttering life. He was at last waiting for someone whose name was known to him. People saw her come home to him, people in his town. She smiled at him, and he knew then that he would die for her.


The moonlight shone through the window. The faint blue light caught the glass of water by the bed, and he suddenly felt so thirsty he thought he would die. He reached out and held the glass in his hands for a long moment. He smelled it and paused, but only for a second. Then he drank the water, drank all the water, and with the first sip, from the faint smell and the bitter aftertaste, he knew the water was tainted. He looked into the bottom of the beautiful Italian glass. He looked at his lovely wife, sleeping peacefully as a child in the moonlight. He remembered Florence, his days of indolence. He knew he was being poisoned.
And he didn't care. He just didn't care anymore.


It was just a story of how the bitter cold gets into your bones and never leaves you, of how the memories get into your heart and never leave you alone, of the pain and the bitterness of what happens to you when you're small and have no defenses but still know evil when it happens, of secrets aobut evil you have no one to tell, of the life you live in secret, knowing your own pain and the pain of others but helpless to do anything other than the things you do, and it end it all comes to.



  1. Some amazing quotes. Thanks for sharing.

  2. Wow! Great quotes!
    In reply to your question: I've not yet read Maus, but it's on my mental TBR. I should move it over to my physical TBR!