Thursday, November 25, 2010

North and South, Quotes

I love the imagery in this paragraph.

Margaret went along the walk under the pear tree wall. She had never been along it since she paced it at Henry Lennox's side. Here, at this bed of thyme, he began to speak of what she must not think now. Her eyes were on that late-blowing rose as she was trying to answer: and she had caught the idea of the vivid beauty of the feathery leaves of the carrots in the very middle of his last sentence. Only a fortnight ago! And all so changed! Where was he now? In London - doing through the old round; dining with the old Harley Street set, or with gayer young friends of his own. Even now, while she walked, sadly through that damp and drear garden in the dusk, with everything falling and fading, and turning to decay around her, he might be gladly putting away his law-books after a day of satisfactory toil, by a run in the Temple Gardens, taking in the while the grandinarticulate mighty roar of tens of thousands of busy men, nigh at hand, but not seen, and catching ever, at his quick turns, glimpses of the lights of the city coming up out of the depths of the river. He had often spoken to Margaret of these hasty walks, snatched in the intervals between study and dinner. At his best times and in his best moods had he spoken of them; and the thought of them had struck upon her fancy. Here there was no sound. The robin had gone away into the vast stillness of night. Now and then, a cottage door in the distance was opened and shut, as if to admit the tired labourer to his home; but the sound among the crisp fallen leaves of the forest, beyond the garden, seemed almost close at hand. Margaret knew it was some poacher. Sitting up in her bedroom this past autumn, with the light of her candle extinguished, and purely revelling in the solemn beauty of the heavens and the earth, se had many a time seen the light noiseless leap of the poachers over the garden fence, their quick tramp across the dewy moonlit lawn, their disappearance in the black still shadow beyond. The wild adventurous freedom of their life had taken her fancy; she felt inclined to wish them success; she had no fear of them. But tonight she was afraid, she knew not why. She heard Charlotte shutting the windows, and fastening up for the night, unconscious that anyone had gone out into the garden. A small branch - it might be of rotten wood, or it might be broken by force - came heavily down in the nearest part of the forest; Margaret ran, swift as Camilla, down the window, and rapped at it with a hurrie tremulousness which startled Charlotte within.

- North and South by Elizabeth Gaskell
Chapter 6, Pages 62-63

I love this book. :)

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