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´╗┐Title: Mary, Mary
Author: Stephens, James, 1882-1950
Language: English
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Copyright Status: Not copyrighted in the United States. If you live elsewhere check the laws of your country before downloading this ebook. See comments about copyright issues at end of book.

*** Start of this Doctrine Publishing Corporation Digital Book "Mary, Mary" ***

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                            MARY, MARY

                         BY JAMES STEPHENS


                      BONI AND LIVERIGHT, INC.
                        PUBLISHERS NEW YORK

               _Printed in the United States of America_



                         BETHEL SOLOMONS, M.B.

                             MARY, MARY


If any of James Stephens' books might be thought to have need of an
Introduction it would be the delightful story that is called "Mary,
Mary" on one side of the Atlantic Ocean and "The Charwoman's Daughter"
on the other. It was written in 1910, when the author was known as the
poet of "Insurrections" and the writer of a few of the mordant studies
that belong to a later book, "Here Are Ladies."

In 1911 four people came together to establish "The Irish Review."
They were David Houston, Thomas MacDonagh, James Stephens and the
present writer. James Stephens mentioned that he could hand over some
stuff for publication. The "stuff" was the book in hand. It came out
as a serial in the second number with the title "Mary, A Story," ran
for a twelvemonth and did much to make the fortune (if a review that
perished after a career of four years ever had its fortune made) of
"The Irish Review."

From the publication of its first chapters the appeal of "Mary"
was felt in two or three countries. Mary Makebelieve was not just
a fictional heroine--she was Cinderella and Snow-white and all
the maidens of tradition for whom the name of heroine is big and
burthensome. With the first words of the story James Stephens put us
into the attitude of listeners to the household tale of folk-lore.
"Mary, Mary" is the simplest of stories: a girl sees this and that,
meets a Great Creature who makes advances to her, is humiliated,
finds a young champion and comes into her fortune--that is all there
is to it as a story. But is it not enough to go with Mary to Stephens'
Green and watch the young ducks "pick up nothing with the greatest
eagerness and swallow it with the greatest delight," and after that
to notice that the ring priced One Hundred Pounds has been taken
from the Jewellers' window, and then stand outside the theatre with
her and her mother and make up with them the story of the plays from
the pictures on the posters?--plays of mystery and imagination they
must have surely been.

Then, of course, there is always Mary's mother; and Mrs. Makebelieve,
with her beaked nose, and her eyes like pools of ink, and her
eagle-flights of speech would give a backbone to any story. Mrs.
Makebelieve has and holds all the privileges of the poor and the
lonely. Moreover, she is the eternal Charwoman. "She could not remain
for any length of time in peoples' employment without being troubled
by the fact that these folk had houses of their own and were actually
employing her in a menial capacity." Mrs. Makebelieve is, I think, a
typical figure. She is the incarnation of the pride and liveliness and
imaginative exuberance that permit the poor to live.

How poor are Mary and Mrs. Makebelieve? We know their lack by the
measure of their desire. Mrs. Makebelieve, always generous, would have
paid her servants Ten Shillings per Week each, and their Board. And we
know that she had often observed desolate people dragging themselves
through the streets, standing to glare through the windows of bakeries
and confectioners' shops, with little children in some of their arms,
and that thinking of such things every morsel she ate would have
choked her were it not for her own hunger. By our being brought to
desire what Mary and her mother desired we come to know the things
they lacked.

Yes, poverty was the state in which Mary and Mrs. Makebelieve existed,
but freedom was the other side of that poverty. They had not to set
the bounds of realization upon their wishes. They were not shut off,
as too many of us are, from the adventure and the enchantment that are
in things. A broken mirror upon the wall of a bare room! It is, after
all, that wonder of wonders, a thing. But one cannot convey to those
who have not known the wonder, how wonderful a mere thing is! A child
who has watched and watched the face of a grandfather's clock, stopped
before he was born, feels this wonder. To grown folk and to those
who have many possessions the things they own are lumber, some more
convenient, some more decorative than others. But to those who have
few possessions things are familiars and have an intimate history.
Hence it is only the poor or only unspoiled children that have the
full freedom of things--who can enter into their adventure and their
enchantment. Mary and her mother have this franchise. And for this
reason also "Mary, Mary" has an inner resemblance to a folk-tale. For
the folk-tale, shaped as it has been by the poor and by unspoiled
people, reveals always the adventure and the enchantment of things.
An old lamp may be Aladdin's. A comb might kill a false queen. A key
may open the door of a secret chamber. A dish may be the supreme
possession of a King. The sense of the uniqueness of things--the sense
that the teller of the folk-tale has always, and that such a poet of
the poor as Burns has often, is in "Mary, Mary." And there is in it
too the zest that the hungry--not the starved but the hungry--have for
life. James Stephens says of the young man who became Mary's champion,
"His ally and stay was hunger, and there is no better ally for any
man: that satisfied and the game is up; for hunger is life, ambition,
good will and understanding, while fulness is all those negatives
which culminate in greediness, stupidity, and decay."

The scene of the story is that grey-colored, friendly capital--Dublin.
It is not the tortuous, inimical, Aristotlian-minded Dublin of James
Joyce's "Portrait of the Artist"--it is the Dublin of the
simple-hearted Dubliner: Dublin with its great grey clouds and its
poising sea-birds, with its hills and its bay, with its streets that
everyone would avoid and with its other streets that everyone
promenades; with its greens and its park and its river-walks--Dublin,
always friendly. It is true that there are in it those who, as the
Policeman told Mary, are born by stealth, eat by subterfuge, drink
by dodges, get married by antics, and slide into death by strange,
subterranean passages. Well, even these would be kindly and humorous
the reader of "Mary, Mary" knows. James Stephens has made Dublin a
place where the heart likes to dwell.

    And would to God that I to-day
    Saw sunlight on the Hill of Howth,
    And sunlight on the Golden Spears,
    And sunlight out on Dublin Bay.

So one who has known Dublin might well exclaim on reading "Mary, Mary"
east or west of Eirinn.

James Stephens brought a fresh and distinctive element into the new
Irish literature--an imaginative exuberance that in its rush of
expression became extravagant, witty, picturesque and lovely. His work
began to appear about 1906. Like the rest of the young Irish writers
he made his appearance in the weekly journal "Sinn Fein," contributing
to it his first poems and his mordant or extravagant essays and stories.
At once he made a public for himself. His first poems were published
in a volume called "Insurrections" and his public became a wide one.
"Mary, Mary" brought out in 1912 was his first prose book. His next, the
unclassifiable "Crock of Gold," was given the De Polignac Prize in 1914.
Since then he has published two other prose books--"Here Are Ladies" and
"The Demi-Gods," with three books of verse, "The Hill of Vision," "Songs
from the Clay," and "The Rocky Road to Dublin."

"Insurrections," written just before "Mary, Mary," has vivid
revelations of personality. "I saw God--do you doubt it?" says Tomas
an Buile in the "pub."--

    I saw God. Do you doubt it?
        Do you dare to doubt it?
    I saw the Almighty Man. His hand
    Was resting on a mountain, and
    He looked upon the World and all about it:
    I saw Him plainer than you see me now,
        You mustn't doubt it.

    He was not satisfied;
        His look was all dissatisfied.
    His beard swung on a wind far out of sight
    Behind the world's curve, and there was light
    Most fearful from His forehead, and He sighed,
    "That star went always wrong, and from the start
        I was dissatisfied."

    He lifted up His hand--
        I say He heaved a dreadful hand
    Over the spinning Earth, then I said "Stay,
    You must not strike it, God; I'm in the way;
    And I will never move from where I stand."
    He said, "Dear child, I feared that you were dead,"
        And stayed His hand.

His God is never a lonely God--he has need of humanity, and the quick
champion of humanity springs straight into the love of God. Such is
the intuition that is in all James Stephens' books.

He is the only author I have ever known whose talk is like his books.
The prodigality of humour, intuition and searching thought that he
puts into his pages he also puts into what he says. And he is the only
man I ever met who can sing his stories as well as tell them. Like the
rest of the Irish writers of to-day, what he writes has a sense of
spiritual equality as amongst all men and women--a sense of a
democracy that is inherent in the world.

[Illustration: signature: Padraic Colum]

New York, September, 1917.



Mary Makebelieve lived with her mother in a small room at the very top
of a big, dingy house in a Dublin back street. As long as she could
remember she had lived in that top back room. She knew every crack in
the ceiling, and they were numerous and of strange shapes. Every spot
of mildew on the ancient wall-paper was familiar. She had, indeed,
watched the growth of most from a grayish shade to a dark stain, from
a spot to a great blob, and the holes in the skirting of the walls,
out of which at nighttime the cockroaches came rattling, she knew
also. There was but one window in the room, and when she wished to
look out of it she had to push the window up, because the grime of
many years had so encrusted the glass that it was of no more than the
demi-semi-transparency of thin horn. When she did look there was
nothing to see but a bulky array of chimney-pots crowning a next-door
house, and these continually hurled jays of soot against her window;
therefore, she did not care to look out often, for each time that she
did so she was forced to wash herself, and as water had to be carried
from the very bottom of the five-story house up hundreds and hundreds
of stairs to her room, she disliked having to use too much water.

Her mother seldom washed at all. She held that washing was very
unhealthy and took the natural gloss off the face, and that, moreover,
soap either tightened the skin or made it wrinkle. Her own face was
very tight in some places and very loose in others, and Mary
Makebelieve often thought that the tight places were spots which her
mother used to wash when she was young, and the loose parts were
those which had never been washed at all. She thought that she would
prefer to be either loose all over her face or tight all over it, and,
therefore, when she washed she did it thoroughly, and when she
abstained she allowed of no compromise.

Her mother's face was the color of old, old ivory. Her nose was like a
great strong beak, and on it the skin was stretched very tightly, so
that her nose shone dully when the candle was lit. Her eyes were big
and as black as pools of ink and as bright as the eyes of a bird. Her
hair also was black, it was as smooth as the finest silk, and when
unloosened it hung straightly down, shining about her ivory face. Her
lips were thin and scarcely colored at all, and her hands were sharp,
quick hands, seeming all knuckle when she closed them and all fingers
when they were opened again.

Mary Makebelieve loved her mother very dearly, and her mother returned
her affection with an overwhelming passion that sometimes surged into
physically painful caresses. When her mother hugged her for any length
of time she soon wept, rocking herself and her daughter to and fro,
and her clutch became then so frantic that poor Mary Makebelieve found
it difficult to draw her breath; but she would not for the world have
disturbed the career of her mother's love. Indeed, she found some
pleasure in the fierceness of those caresses, and welcomed the pain
far more than she reprobated it.

Her mother went out early every morning to work, and seldom returned
home until late at night. She was a charwoman, and her work was to
scrub out rooms and wash down staircases. She also did cooking when
she was asked, and needlework when she got any to do. She had made
exquisite dresses which were worn by beautiful young girls at balls
and picnics, and fine, white shirts that great gentlemen wore when
they were dining, and fanciful waistcoats for gay young men, and silk
stockings for dancing in--but that was a long time ago, because these
beautiful things used to make her very angry when they were taken from
her, so that she cursed the people who came to take them away and
sometimes tore up the dresses and danced on them and screamed.

She used often to cry because she was not rich. Sometimes, when she
came home from work, she liked to pretend that she was rich; she would
play at imagining that some one had died and left her a great fortune,
or that her brother Patrick had come back from America with vast
wealth, and then she would tell Mary Makebelieve of the things she
intended to buy and do the very next day. Mary Makebelieve liked
that.... They were to move the first thing in the morning to a big
house with a garden behind it full of fruit trees and flowers and
birds. There would be a wide lawn in front of the house to play lawn
tennis in and to walk with delicately fine young men with fair faces
and white hands, who would speak in the French language and bow often
with their hats almost touching the ground. There were to be twelve
servants--six of them men servants and six of them women servants--who
would instantly do as they were bidden and would receive ten shillings
each per week and their board; they would also have two nights free in
the week, and would be very well fed. There were many wonderful
dresses to be bought, dresses for walking in the streets and dresses
for driving in a carriage, and others again for riding on horseback
and for traveling in. There was a dress of crimson silk with a deep
lace collar, and a heavy, wine-colored satin dress with a gold chain
falling down in front of it, and there was a pretty white dress of the
finest linen, having one red rose pinned at the waist. There were
black silken stockings with quaint designs worked on them in red silk,
and scarves of silver gauze, and others embroidered with flowers and
little shapes of men and women.

When her mother was planning all these things she was very happy, but
afterwards she used to cry bitterly and rock her daughter to and fro
on her breast until she hurt her.


Every morning about six o'clock Mary Makebelieve left her bed and lit
the fire. It was an ugly fire to light, because the chimney had never
been swept, and there was no draught. Also they never had any sticks
in the house, and scraps of paper twisted tightly into balls with the
last night's cinders placed on them and a handful of small coals
strewn on the top were used instead. Sometimes the fire blazed up
quickly, and that made her happy, but at other times it went out three
and four, and often half a dozen times; then the little bottle of
paraffin oil had to be squandered--a few rags well steeped in the oil
with a newspaper stretched over the grate seldom failed to coax enough
fire to boil the saucepan of water; generally this method smoked the
water, and then the tea tasted so horrid that one only drank it for
the sake of economy.

Mrs. Makebelieve liked to lie in bed until the last possible moment.
As there was no table in the room, Mary used to bring the two cups of
tea, the tin of condensed milk, and the quarter of a loaf over to the
bed, and there she and her mother took their breakfast.

From the time she opened her eyes in the morning her mother never
ceased to talk. It was then she went over all the things that had
happened on the previous day and enumerated the places she would have
to go to on the present day, and the chances for and against the
making of a little money. At this meal she used to arrange also to
have the room re-papered and the chimney swept and the rat-holes
stopped up--there were three of these, one was on the left-hand side
of the fire grate, the other two were under the bed, and Mary
Makebelieve had lain awake many a night listening to the gnawing of
teeth on the skirting and the scamper of little feet here and there on
the floor. Her mother further arranged to have a Turkey carpet placed
on the floor, although she admitted that oilcloth or linoleum was
easier to clean, but they were not so nice to the feet or the eye.
Into all these improvements her daughter entered with the greatest
delight. There was to be a red mahogany chest of drawers against one
wall and a rosewood piano against the wall opposite. A fender of
shining brass with brazen furniture, a bright, copper kettle for
boiling water in, and an iron pot for cooking potatoes and meat; there
was to be a life-sized picture of Mary over the mantelpiece and a
picture of her mother near the window in a golden frame, also a
picture of a Newfoundland dog lying in a barrel and a little wee
terrier crawling up to make friends with him, and a picture of a
battle between black people and soldiers.

Her mother knew it was time to get out of bed when she heard a heavy
step coming from the next room and going downstairs. A laboring man
lived there with his wife and six children. When the door banged she
jumped up, dressed quickly, and flew from the room in a panic of
haste. Usually then, as there was nothing to do, Mary went back to bed
for another couple of hours. After this she arose, made the bed and
tidied the room, and went out to walk in the streets, or to sit in the
St. Stephen's Green Park. She knew every bird in the Park, those that
had chickens and those that had had chickens, and those that never had
any chickens at all--these latter were usually drakes, and had reason
on their side for an abstention which might otherwise have appeared
remarkable, but they did not deserve the pity which Mary lavished on
their childlessness, nor the extra pieces of bread with which she
sought to recompense them. She loved to watch the ducklings swimming
after their mothers: they were quite fearless, and would dash to the
water's edge where one was standing and pick up nothing with the
greatest eagnerness and swallow it with delight. The mother duck swam
placidly close to her brood and clucked in a low voice all kinds of
warnings and advice and reproof to the little ones. Mary Makebelieve
thought it was very clever of the little ducklings to be able to swim
so well. She loved them, and when nobody was looking she used to cluck
at them like their mother, but she did not often do this because she
did not know duck language really well, and feared that her cluck
might mean the wrong things, and that she might be giving these
innocents bad advice, and telling them to do something contrary to
what their mother had just directed.

The bridge across the big lake was a fascinating place. On the sunny
side lots of ducks were always standing on their heads searching for
something in the water, so that they looked like only half ducks. On
the shady side hundreds of eels were swimming about--they were most
wonderful things; some of them were thin like ribbons, and others were
round and plump like thick ropes. They never seemed to fight at all,
and although the ducklings were so tiny the big eels never touched any
of them, even when they dived right down amongst them. Some of the
eels swam along very slowly, looking on this side and on that as if
they were out of work or up from the country, and others whizzed by
with incredible swiftness. Mary Makebelieve thought that the latter
kind had just heard their babies crying; she wondered, when a little
fish cried, could its mother see the tears where there was already so
much water about, and then she thought that maybe they cried hard
lumps of something that was easily visible.

After this she would go around the flower-beds and look at each; some
of them were shaped like stars, and some were quite round, and others
again were square. She liked the star-shaped flower-beds best, and
next she liked the round ones, and last of all the square. But she
loved all the flowers, and used to make up stories about them.

After that, growing hungry, she would go home for her lunch. She went
home down Grafton Street and O'Connell Street. She always went along
the right-hand side of the street going home, and looked in every shop
window that she passed, and then, when she had eaten her lunch, she
came out again and walked along the left-hand side of the road,
looking at the shops on that side, and so she knew daily everything
that was new in the city, and was able to tell her mother at nighttime
that the black dress with Spanish lace was taken out of Manning's
window and a red gown with tucks at the shoulders and Irish lace at
the wrists put in its place; or that the diamond ring in Johnson's
marked One Hundred Pounds was gone from the case and that a slide of
brooches of beaten silver and blue enamel was there instead.

In the nighttime her mother and herself went round to each of the
theaters in turn and watched the people going in and looked at the big
posters. When they went home afterwards they had supper and used to
try to make out the plots of the various plays from the pictures they
had seen, so that generally they had lots to talk about before they
went to bed. Mary Makebelieve used to talk most in the nighttime, but
her mother talked most in the morning.


Her mother spoke sometimes of matrimony as a thing remote but very
certain; the remoteness of this adventure rather shocked Mary
Makebelieve; she knew that a girl had to get married, that a strange,
beautiful man would come from somewhere looking for a wife and would
retire again with his bride to that Somewhere which is the country of
Romance. At times (and she could easily picture it) he rode in armor
on a great bay horse, the plume of his helmet trailing among the high
leaves of the forest. Or he came standing on the prow of a swift ship
with the sunlight blazing back from his golden armor. Or on a grassy
plain, fleet as the wind, he came running, leaping, laughing.

When the subject of matrimony was under discussion her mother planned
minutely the person of the groom, his vast accomplishments, and yet
vaster wealth, the magnificence of his person, and the love in which
he was held by rich and poor alike. She also discussed, down to the
smallest detail, the elaborate trousseau she would provide for her
daughter, the extravagant presents the bridegroom would make to his
bride and her maids, and those, yet more costly, which the
bridegroom's family would send to the newly married pair. All these
wonders could only concentrate in the person of a lord. Mary
Makebelieve's questions as to the status and appurtenances of a lord
were searching and minute, her mother's rejoinders were equally
elaborate and particular.

At his birth a lord is cradled in silver, at his death he is laid in
a golden casket, an oaken coffin, and a leaden outer coffin until,
finally, a massy stone sarcophagus shrouds his remains forever. His
life is a whirl of gayety and freedom. Around his castle there spread
miles upon miles of sunny grass lands and ripened orchards and waving
forests, and through these he hunts with his laughing companions or
walks gently with his lady. He has servants by the thousand, each
anxious to die for him, and his wealth, prodigious beyond the
computation of avarice, is stored in underground chambers, whose low,
tortuous passages lead to labyrinths of vaults, massy and impregnable.

Mary Makebelieve would have loved to wed a lord. If a lord had come to
her when she paced softly through a forest, or stood alone on the
seashore, or crouched among the long grass of a windy plain, she would
have placed her hands in his and followed him and loved him truly
forever. But she did not believe that these things happened nowadays,
nor did her mother. Nowadays! her mother looked on these paltry times
with an eye whose scorn was complicated by fury. Mean, ugly days,
mean, ugly lives, and mean, ugly people, said her mother, that's all
one can get nowadays, and then she spoke of the people whose houses
she washed out and whose staircases she scrubbed down, and her
old-ivory face flamed from her black hair and her deep, dark eyes
whirled and became hard and motionless as points of jet, and her hands
jumped alternately into knuckles and claws.

But it became increasingly evident to Mary Makebelieve that marriage
was not a story but a fact, and, somehow, the romance of it did not
drift away, although the very house wherein she lived was infested by
these conjoints, and the streets wherein she walked were crowded with
undistinguished couples.... Those gray-lived, dreary-natured people
had a spark of fire smoldering somewhere in their poor economy. Six
feet deep is scarcely deep enough to bury romance, and until that
depth of clay has clogged our bones the fire can still smolder and be
fanned, and, perhaps, blaze up and flare across a county or a country
to warm the cold hands of many a shriveled person.

How did all these people come together? She did not yet understand the
basic necessity that drives the male to the female. Sex was not yet to
her a physiological distinction, it was only a differentiation of
clothing, a matter of whiskers and no whiskers: but she had begun to
take a new and peculiar interest in men. One of these hurrying or
loitering strangers might be the husband whom fate had ordained for
her. She would scarcely have been surprised if one of the men who
looked at her casually in the street had suddenly halted and asked her
to marry him. It came on her with something like assurance that that
was the only business these men were there for, she could not discover
any other reason or excuse for their existence, and if some man had
been thus adventurous Mary Makebelieve would have been sadly perplexed
to find an answer: she might, indeed, have replied, "Yes, thank you,
sir," for when a man asks one to do a thing for him one does it
gladly. There was an attraction about young men which she could not
understand, something peculiarly dear and magnetic; she would have
liked to shake hands with one to see how different he felt from a
girl. They would, probably, shake hands quite hard and then hit one.
She fancied she would not mind being hit by a man, and then, watching
the vigor of their movements, she thought they could hit very hard,
but still there was a terrible attraction about the idea of being hit
by a man. She asked her mother (with apparent irrelevance) had a man
ever struck her; her mother was silent for a few moments, and then
burst into so violent a passion of weeping that Mary Makebelieve was
frightened. She rushed into her mother's arms and was rocked fiercely
against a heart almost bursting with bitter pride and recollection.
But her mother did not then, nor did she ever afterwards, answer Mary
Makebelieve's question.


Every afternoon a troop of policemen marched in solemn and majestic
single file from the College Green Police Station. At regular
intervals, one by one, a policeman stepped sideways from the file,
adjusted his belt, touched his moustache, looked up the street and
down the street for stray criminals, and condescended to the duties
of his beat.

At the crossing where Nassau and Suffolk streets intersect Grafton
Street one of these superb creatures was wont to relinquish his
companions, and there in the center of the road, a monument of
solidity and law, he remained until the evening hour which released
him again to the companionship of his peers.

Perhaps this point is the most interesting place in Dublin. Upon one
vista Grafton Street with its glittering shops stretches, or rather
winds, to the St. Stephen's Green Park, terminating at the gate known
as the Fusiliers' Arch, but which local patriotism has rechristened
the Traitors' Gate. On the left Nassau Street, broad and clean, and a
trifle vulgar and bourgeois in its openness, runs away to Merrion
Square, and on with a broad ease to Blackrock and Kingstown and the
sea. On the right hand Suffolk Street, reserved and shy, twists up to
St. Andrew's Church, touches gingerly the South City Markets, droops
to George's Street, and is lost in mean and dingy intersections. At
the back of the crossing Grafton Street continues again for a little
distance down to Trinity College (at the gates whereof very
intelligent young men flaunt very tattered gowns and smoke massive
pipes with great skill for their years), skirting the Bank of Ireland,
and on to the River Liffey and the street which local patriotism
defiantly speaks of as O'Connell Street, and alien patriotism, with
equal defiance and pertinacity, knows as Sackville Street.

To the point where these places meet, and where the policeman stands,
all the traffic of Dublin converges in a constant stream. The trams
hurrying to Terenure, or Donnybrook, or Dalkey flash around this
corner; the doctors who, in these degenerate days, concentrate in
Merrion Square, fly up here in carriages and motor cars, the vans of
the great firms in Grafton and O'Connell streets, or those outlying,
never cease their exuberant progress. The ladies and gentlemen of
leisure stroll here daily at four o'clock, and from all sides the
vehicles and pedestrians, the bicycles and motor bicycles, the trams
and the outside cars rush to the solitary policeman, who directs them
all with his severe but tolerant eye. He knows all the tram-drivers
who go by, and his nicely graduated wink rewards the glances of the
rubicund, jolly drivers of the hackneys and the decayed Jehus with
purple faces and dismal hopefulness who drive sepulchral cabs for some
reason which has no acquaintance with profit; nor are the ladies and
gentlemen who saunter past foreign to his encyclopedic eye. Constantly
his great head swings a slow recognition, constantly his serene finger
motions onwards a well-known undesirable, and his big, white teeth
flash for an instant at young, laughing girls and the more matronly
acquaintances who solicit the distinction of his glance.

To this place, and about this hour, Mary Makebelieve, returning from
her solitary lunch, was wont to come. The figure of the massive
policeman fascinated her. Surely everything desirable in manhood was
concentrated in his tremendous body. What an immense, shattering blow
that mighty fist could give! She could imagine it swinging vast as the
buffet of a hero, high-thrown and then down irresistibly--a crashing,
monumental hand. She delighted in his great, solid head as it swung
slowly from side to side, and his calm, proud eye--a governing,
compelling and determined eye. She had never met his glance yet: she
withered away before it as a mouse withers and shrinks and falls to
its den before a cat's huge glare. She used to look at him from the
curbstone in front of the chemist's shop, or on the opposite side of
the road, while pretending to wait for a tram; and at the pillar-box
beside the optician's she found time for one furtive twinkle of a
glance that shivered to his face and trembled away into the traffic.
She did not think he noticed her, but there was nothing he did not
notice. His business was noticing: he caught her in his mental
policeman's note-book the very first day she came; he saw her each
day beside, and at last looked for her coming and enjoyed her
strategy. One day her shy, creeping glance was caught by his; it held
her mesmerized for a few seconds, it looked down into her--for a
moment the whole world seemed to have become one immense eye--she
could scarcely get away from it.

When she remembered again she was standing by the pond in St.
Stephen's Green Park, with a queer frightened exaltation lightening
through her blood. She did not go home that night by Grafton Street,
she did not dare venture within reach of that powerful organism, but
went a long way round, and still the way seemed very short.

That night her mother, although very tired, was the more talkative of
the two. She offered in exchange for her daughter's thoughts pennies
that only existed in her imagination. Mary Makebelieve professed that
it was sleep and not thought obsessed her, and exhibited voucher yawns
which were as fictitious as her reply. When they went to bed that
night it was a long time before she slept. She lay looking into the
deep gloom of the chamber, and scarcely heard the fierce dreams of her
mother, who was demanding from a sleep world the things she lacked in
the wide-awake one.


This is the appearance of Mary Makebelieve at that time:--She had fair
hair, and it was very soft and very thick; when she unwound this it
fell, or rather flowed, down to her waist, and when she walked about
the room with her hair unloosened it curved beautifully about her
head, snuggled into the hollow of her neck, ruffled out broadly again
upon her shoulders, and swung into and out of her figure with every
motion; surging and shrinking and dancing; the ends of her hair were
soft and loose as foam, and it had the color and shining of pure,
light gold. Commonly in the house she wore her hair loose, because her
mother liked the appearance of youth imparted by hanging hair, and
would often desire her daughter to leave off her outer skirt and walk
only in her petticoats to heighten the illusion of girlishness. Her
head was shaped very tenderly and softly; it was so small that when
her hair was twisted up on it it seemed much too delicate to bear so
great a burden. Her eyes were gray, limpidly tender and shy, drooping
under weighty lids, so that they seldom seemed more than half opened
and commonly sought the ground rather than the bolder excursions of
straightforwardness; they seldom looked for longer than a glance,
climbing and poising and eddying about the person at whom she gazed,
and then dived away again; and always when she looked at any one she
smiled a deprecation of her boldness. She had a small white face, very
like her mother's in some ways and at some angles, but the tight beak
which was her mother's nose was absent in Mary; her nose withdrew
timidly in the center and only snatched a hurried courage to become
visible at the tip. It was a nose that seemed to have been snubbed
almost out of existence. Her mother loved it because it was so little,
and had tried so hard not to be a nose at all. They often stood
together before the little glass that had a great crack running
drunkenly from the right-hand top corner down to the left-hand bottom
corner, and two small arm crosses, one a little above the other, in
the center. When one's face looked into this glass it often appeared
there as four faces with horrible aberrations; an ear might be curving
around a lip or an eye leering strangely in the middle of a chin. But
there were ways of looking into the glass which practice had discovered,
and usage had long ago dulled the terrors of its vagaries. Looking into
this glass Mrs. Makebelieve would comment minutely upon the two faces
therein, and, pointing to her own triumphantly genuine nose and the fact
that her husband's nose had been of quite discernible proportions, she
would seek in labyrinths of pedigree for a reason to justify her
daughter's lack; she passed all her sisters in this review, with an
army of aunts and great-aunts, rifling the tombs of grandparents and
their remoter blood, and making long-dead noses to live again. Mary
Makebelieve used to lift her timidly curious eye and smile in
deprecation of her nasal shortcomings, and then her mother would kiss
the dejected button and vow it was the dearest, loveliest bit of a nose
that had ever been seen.

"Big noses suit some people," said Mrs. Makebelieve, "but they do not
suit others, and one would not suit you, dearie. They go well with
black-haired people and very tall people, military gentlemen, judges
and apothecaries; but small, fair folk cannot support great noses. I
like my own nose," she continued. "At school, when I was a little
girl, the other girls used to laugh at my nose, but I always liked it,
and after a time other people came to like it also."

Mary Makebelieve had small, slim hands and feet: the palms of her
hands were softer than anything in the world; there were five little,
pink cushions on her palm: beginning at the little finger there was a
very tiny cushion, the next one was bigger, and the next bigger again,
until the largest ended a perfect harmony at the base of her thumb.
Her mother used to kiss these little cushions at times, holding back
the finger belonging to each, and naming it as she touched it. These
are the names of Mary Makebelieve's fingers, beginning with the
Thumb:--Tom Tumkins, Willie Winkles, Long Daniel, Bessie Bobtail and
Little Dick-Dick.

Her slight, girlish figure was only beginning to creep to the deeper
contours of womanhood, a half curve here and there, a sudden softness
in the youthful lines, certain angles trembling on the slightest of
rolls, a hint, a suggestion, the shadowy prophecy of circles and half
hoops that could not yet roll: the trip of her movements was troubled
sometimes to a sedater motion.

These things her mother's curiosity was continually recording,
sometimes with happy pride, but oftener in a kind of anger to find
that her little girl was becoming a big girl. If it had been possible
she would have detained her daughter forever in the physique of a
child; she feared the time when Mary would become too evidently a
woman, when all kinds of equalities would come to hinder her
spontaneous and active affection. A woman might object to be nursed,
while a girl would not; Mrs. Makebelieve feared that objection, and,
indeed, Mary, under the stimulus of an awakening body and a new,
strange warmth, was not altogether satisfied by being nursed or by
being the passive participant in these caresses. She sometimes thought
that she would like to take her mother on her own breast and rock her
to and fro, crooning soft made-up words and kissing the top of a head
or the half-hidden curve of a cheek, but she did not dare to do so
for fear her mother would strike her. Her mother was very jealous on
that point, she loved her daughter to kiss her and stroke her hands
and her face, but she never liked her to play at being the mother, nor
had she ever encouraged her daughter in the occupations of a doll. She
was the mother and Mary was the baby, and she could not bear to have
her motherhood hindered even in play.


Although Mary Makebelieve was sixteen years of age she had not yet
gone to work; her mother did not like the idea of her little girl
stooping to the drudgery of the only employment she could have aided
her to obtain--that was, to assist herself in the humble and arduous
toil of charing. She had arranged that Mary was to go into a shop, a
drapery store, or some such other, but that was to be in a sometime
which seemed infinitely remote. "And then, too," said Mrs.
Makebelieve, "all kinds of things may happen in a year or so if we
wait. Your uncle Patrick, who went to America twenty years ago, may
come home, and when he does you will not have to work, dearie, nor
will I. Or again, some one going along the street may take a fancy to
you and marry you; things often happen like that." There were a
thousand schemes and accidents which, in her opinion, might occur to
the establishment of her daughter's ease and the enlargement of her
own dignity. And so Mary Makebelieve, when her mother was at work
(which was sometimes every day in the week), had all the day to loiter
in and spend as best she liked. Sometimes she did not go out at all.
She stayed in the top back room sewing or knitting, mending holes in
the sheets or the blankets, or reading books from the Free Library in
Capel Street: but generally she preferred, after the few hours which
served to put the room in order, to go out and walk along the streets,
taking new turnings as often as she fancied, and striking down strange
roads to see the shops and the people.

There were so many people whom she knew by sight; almost daily she saw
these somewhere, and she often followed them for a short distance,
with a feeling of friendship; for the loneliness of the long day
often drew down upon her like a weight, so that even the distant
companionship of these remembered faces that did not know her was
comforting. She wished she could find out who some of them
were.--There was a tall man with a sweeping brown beard, whose heavy
overcoat looked as though it had been put on with a shovel; he wore
spectacles, and his eyes were blue, and always seemed as if they were
going to laugh; he, also, looked into the shops as he went along, and
he seemed to know everybody. Every few paces people would halt and
shake his hand, but these people never spoke because the big man with
the brown beard would instantly burst into a fury of speech which had
no intervals, and when there was no one with him at all he would talk
to himself. On these occasions he did not see any one, and people had
to jump out of his way while he strode onwards swinging his big head
from one side to the other, and with his eyes fixed on some place a
great distance away. Once or twice, in passing, she heard him singing
to himself the most lugubrious song in the world. There was another--a
long, thin, black man--who looked young and was always smiling secretly
to himself; his lips were never still for a moment, and, passing Mary
Makebelieve a few times, she heard him buzzing like a great bee. He did
not stop to shake hands with any one, and although many people saluted
him he took no heed, but strode on smiling his secret smile and buzzing
serenely. There was a third man whom she often noticed: his clothing
seemed as if it had been put on him a long time ago and had never been
taken off again. He had a long, pale face, with a dark moustache
drooping over a most beautiful mouth. His eyes were very big and lazy,
and did not look quite human; they had a trick of looking sidewards--a
most intimate, personal look. Sometimes he saw nothing in the world but
the pavement, and at other times he saw everything. He looked at Mary
Makebelieve once and she got a fright; she had a queer idea that she had
known him well hundreds of years before and that he remembered her also.
She was afraid of that man, but she liked him because he looked so
gentle and so--there was something else he looked which as yet she could
not put a name to, but which her ancestry remembered dimly. There was a
short, fair, pale-faced man, who looked like the tiredest man in the
world. He was often preoccupied, but not in the singular way the others
were. He seemed to be always chewing the cud of remembrance, and looked
at people as if they reminded him of other people who were dead a long
time and whom he thought of but did not regret. He was a detached man
even in a crowd and carried with him a cold atmosphere; even his smile
was bleak and aloof. Mary Makebelieve noticed that many people nudged
each other as he went by, and then they would turn and look after him
and go away whispering.

These and many others she saw almost daily, and used to look for with
a feeling of friendship. At other times she walked up the long line of
quays sentineling the Liffey, watching the swift boats of Guinness
puffing down the river and the thousands of sea-gulls hovering above
or swimming on the dark waters, until she came to the Phoenix Park,
where there was always a cricket or football match being played, or
some young men or girls playing hurley, or children playing
tip-and-tig, running after one another, and dancing and screaming in
the sunshine. Her mother liked very much to go with her to the
Phoenix Park on days when there was no work to be done. Leaving the
great, white main road, up which the bicycles and motor cars are
continually whizzing, a few minutes' walk brings one to quiet alleys
sheltered by trees and groves of hawthorn. In these passages one can
walk for a long time without meeting a person, or lie on the grass in
the shadow of a tree and watch the sunlight beating down on the green
fields and shimmering between the trees. There is a deep silence to be
found here, very strange and beautiful to one fresh from the city, and
it is strange also to look about in the broad sunshine and see no
person near at all, and no movement saving the roll and folding of the
grass, the slow swinging of the branches of the trees or the noiseless
flight of a bee, a butterfly, or a bird.

These things Mary Makebelieve liked, but her mother would pine for the
dances of the little children, the gallant hurrying of the motor cars,
and the movement to and fro of the people with gay dresses and colored
parasols and all the circumstance of holiday.


One morning Mary Makebelieve jumped out of bed and lit the fire. For a
wonder it lit easily: the match was scarcely applied when the flames
were leaping up the black chimney, and this made her feel at ease with
the world. Her mother stayed in bed chatting with something more of
gayety than usual. It was nearly six o'clock, and the early summer sun
was flooding against the grimy window. The previous evening's post had
brought a post-card for Mrs. Makebelieve, requesting her to call on a
Mrs. O'Connor, who had a house off Harcourt Street. This, of course,
meant a day's work--it also meant a new client.

Mrs. Makebelieve's clients were always new. She could not remain for
any length of time in people's employment without being troubled by
the fact that these folk had houses of their own and were actually
employing her in a menial capacity. She sometimes looked at their
black silk aprons in a way which they never failed to observe with
anger, and on their attempting (as they always termed it) to put her
in her proper place, she would discuss their appearance and morals
with such power that they at once dismissed her from their employment
and incited their husbands to assault her.

Mrs. Makebelieve's mind was exercised in finding out who had
recommended her to this new lady, and in what terms of encomium such
recommendation had been framed. She also debated as to whether it
would be wise to ask for one shilling and ninepence per day instead of
the customary one shilling and sixpence. If the house was a big one
she might be required by this new customer oftener than once a week,
and, perhaps, there were others in the house besides the lady who
would find small jobs for her to do--needlework or messages, or some
such which would bring in a little extra money; for she professed her
willingness and ability to undertake with success any form of work in
which a woman could be eminent. In a house where she had worked she
had once been asked by a gentleman who lodged there to order in two
dozen bottles of stout, and, on returning with the stout, the
gentleman had thanked her and given her a shilling. Incidents parallel
to this had kept her faith in humanity green. There must be plenty of
these open-handed gentlemen in houses such as she worked in, and,
perhaps, in Mrs. O'Connor's house there might be more than one such
person. There were stingy people enough, heaven knew, people who would
get one to run messages and almost expect to be paid themselves for
allowing one to work for them. Mrs. Makebelieve anathematized such
skinflints with a vocabulary which was quite equal to the detailing
of their misdeeds; but she refused to dwell on them: they were not
really important in a world where the sun was shining. In the
nighttime she would again believe in their horrible existences, but
until then the world must be peopled with kind-hearted folk. She
instanced many whom she knew, people who had advanced services and
effects without exacting or indeed expecting any return.

When the tea was balanced insecurely on the bed, the two teacups on
one side of her legs, the three-quarters of a loaf and the tin of
condensed milk on the other, Mary sat down with great care, and all
through the breakfast her mother culled from her capacious memory a
list of kindnesses of which she had been the recipient or the witness.
Mary supplemented the recital by incidents from her own observation.
She had often seen a man in the street give a penny to an old woman.
She had often seen old women give things to other old women. She knew
many people who never looked for the halfpenny change from a newsboy.
Mrs. Makebelieve applauded the justice of such transactions; they
were, she admitted, the things she would do herself if she were in a
position to be careless; but a person to whom the discovery of her
daily bread is a daily problem, and who can scarcely keep pace with
the ever-changing terms of the problem, is not in a position to be
careless.--"Grind, grind, grind," said Mrs. Makebelieve, "that is life
for me, and if I ceased to grind for an instant ..." she flickered her
thin hand into a nowhere of terror. Her attitude was that when one had
enough one should give the residue to some one who had not enough. It
was her woe, it stabbed her to the heart, to see desolate people
dragging through the streets, standing to glare through the windows of
bakeries and confectioners' shops, and little children in some of
these helpless arms! Thinking of these, she said that every morsel she
ate would choke her were it not for her own hunger. But maybe, said
she, catching a providential glance of the golden-tinted window, maybe
these poor people were not as poor as they seemed: surely they had
ways of collecting a living which other people did not know anything
about. It might be that they got lots of money from kind-hearted
people, and food at hospitable doors, and here and there clothing and
oddments which, if they did not wear, they knew how to dispose of
advantageously. What extremes of ways and means such people must be
acquainted with! no ditch was too low to rummage in, no rat-hole too
hidden to be ravaged; a gate represented something to be climbed over:
an open door was an invitation, a locked one a challenge. They could
dodge under the fences of the law and climb the barbed wire of
morality with equal impunity, and the utmost rigor of punishment
had little terror for those whose hardships could scarcely be
artificially worsened. The stagger of despair, the stricken, helpless
aspect of such people, their gaunt faces and blurred eyes might
conceivably be their stock-in-trade, the keys wherewith they unlocked
hearts and purses and area-doors. It must be so when the sun was
shining and birds were singing across fields not immeasurably distant,
and children in walled gardens romped among fruits and flowers. She
would believe this, for it was the early morning when one must
believe, but when the nighttime came again she would laugh to scorn
such easy beliefs, she would see the lean ribs of humanity when she
undressed herself.


After her mother had gone Mary Makebelieve occupied herself settling
the room and performing the various offices which the keeping in order
of even one small room involves. There were pieces of the wall-paper
flapping loosely; these had to be gummed down with strips of
stamp-paper. The bed had to be made, the floor scrubbed, and a
miscellany of objects patted and tapped into order. Her few dresses
also had to be gone over for loose buttons, and the darning of
threadbare places was a duty exercising her constant attention. Her
clothing was always made by her mother, whose needle had once been
noted for expertness, and, therefore, fitted more accurately than is
customary in young girls' dresses. The arranging and rearranging of
her beads was a frequent and enjoyable labor. She had four different
necklaces, representing four different pennyworths of beads purchased
at a shop whose merchandise was sold for one penny per item. One
pennyworth of these beads was colored green, another red, a third was
colored like pearls, and the fourth was a miscellaneous packet of many
colors. A judicious selection of these beads could always provide a
new and magnificent necklace at the expense of little more than a
half-hour's easy work.

Because the sun was shining she brought out her white dress, and for a
time was busy on it. There had been five tucks in the dress, but one
after one they had to be let out. This was the last tuck that
remained, and it also had to go, but even with such extra lengthening
the dress would still swing free of her ankles. Her mother had
promised to add a false hem to it when she got time, and Mary
determined to remind her of this promise as soon as she came in from
work. She polished her shoes, put on the white dress, and then did up
her hair in front of the cracked looking-glass. She always put up her
hair very plainly. She first combed it down straight, then parted it
in the center, and rolled it into a great ball at the back of her
neck. She often wished to curl her hair, and, indeed, it would have
curled with the lightest persuasion: but her mother being approached
on the subject, said that curls were common and were seldom worn by
respectable people, excepting very small children or actresses, both
of whose slender mentalities were registered by these tiny
daintinesses. Also, curls took up too much time in arranging, and the
slightest moisture in the air was liable to draw them down into lank
and unsightly plasters, and, therefore, saving for a dance or a
picnic, curls should not be used.

Mary Makebelieve, having arranged her hair, hesitated for some time in
the choice of a necklace. There was the pearl-colored necklace--it was
very pretty, but every one could tell at once that they were not
genuine pearls. Real pearls of the bigness of these would be very
valuable. Also there was something childish about pearls which
latterly she wished to avoid. She had quite grown up now. The letting
down of the last tuck in her dress marked an epoch as distinct as did
the first rolling up of her hair. She wished her dress would go right
down to her heels so that she might have a valid reason for holding up
her skirts with one hand. She felt a trifle of impatience because her
mother had delayed making the false hem; she could have stitched it on
herself if her mother had cut it out, but for this day the dress would
have to do. She wished she owned a string of red coral; not that round
beady sort, but the jagged crisscross coral--a string of these long
enough to go twice round her neck, and yet hang down in front to her
waist. If she owned a string as long as that she might be able to cut
enough off to make a slender wristlet. She would have loved to see
such a wristlet sagging down to her hand.

Red, it seemed, would have to be the color for this day, so she took
the red beads out of a box and put them on. They looked very nice
against her white dress, but still--she did not quite like them: they
seemed too solid, so she put them back into the box again, and instead
tied round her neck a narrow ribbon of black velvet, which satisfied
her better. Next she put on her hat; it was of straw, and had been
washed many times. There was a broad ribbon of black velvet around it.
She wished earnestly that she had a sash of black velvet about three
inches deep to go round her waist. There was such a piece about the
hem of her mother's Sunday skirt, but, of course, that could not be
touched; maybe, her mother would give it to her if she asked. The
skirt would look quite as well without it, and when her mother knew
how nice it looked round her waist she would certainly give it to her.

She gave a last look at herself in the glass and went out, turning up
to the quays in the direction of the Phoenix Park. The sun was
shining gloriously, and the streets seemed wonderfully clean in the
sunlight. The horses under the heavy drays pulled their loads as if
they were not heavy. The big, red-faced drivers leaned back at ease,
with their hard hats pushed back from their foreheads and their eyes
puckered at the sunshine. The tram-cars whizzed by like great jewels.
The outside cars went spanking down the broad road, and every
jolly-faced jarvey winked at her as he jolted by. The people going up
and down the street seemed contented and happy. It was one o'clock,
and from all kinds of offices and shops young men and women were
darting forth for their lunch; none of the young men were so hurried
but they had a moment to glance admiringly at Mary Makebelieve before
diving into a cheap restaurant or cheaper public-house for their
food. The gulls in the river were flying in long, lazy curves, dipping
down to the water, skimming it an instant, and then wheeling up again
with easy, slanting wings. Every few minutes a boat laden with barrels
puffed swiftly from beneath a bridge. All these boats had pretty
names--there was the _Shannon_, the _Suir_, the _Nore_, the _Lagan_,
and many others. The men on board sat contentedly on the barrels and
smoked and made slow remarks to one another; and overhead the sky was
blue and wonderful, immeasurably distant, filled from horizon to
horizon with sparkle and warmth. Mary Makebelieve went slowly on
towards the Park. She felt very happy. Now and then a darker spot
flitted through her mind, not at all obscuring, but toning the
brightness of her thoughts to a realizable serenity. She wished her
skirts were long enough to be held up languidly like the lady walking
in front: the hand holding up the skirt had a golden curb-chain on
the wrist which drooped down to the neatly gloved hand, and between
each link of the chain was set a blue turquoise, and upon this jewel
the sun danced splendidly. Mary Makebelieve wished she had a slender
red coral wristlet; it also would have hung down to her palm and been
lovely in the sunlight, and it would, she thought, have been far nicer
than the bangle.


She walked along for some time in the Park. Through the railings
flanking the great road many beds of flowers could be seen. These were
laid out in a great variety of forms--of stars and squares and crosses
and circles, and the flowers were arranged in exquisite patterns.
There was a great star which flamed with red flowers at the deep
points, and in its heart a heavier mass of yellow blossom glared
suddenly. There were circles wherein each ring was a differently
colored flower, and others where three rings alternated--three rings
white, three purple, and three orange, and so on in slenderer circles
to the tiniest diminishing. Mary Makebelieve wished she knew the names
of all the flowers, but the only ones she recognized by sight were the
geraniums, some species of roses, violets, and forget-me-nots and
pansies. The more exotic sorts she did not know, and, while she
admired them greatly, she had not the same degree of affection for
them as for the commoner, friendly varieties.

Leaving the big road she wandered into wider fields. In a few moments
the path was hidden, the outside cars, motor cars and bicycles had
vanished as completely as though there were no such things in the
world. Great numbers of children were playing about in distinct bands;
each troop was accompanied by one and sometimes two older people,
girls or women who lay stretched out on the warm grass or leaned
against the tree-trunks reading novelettes, and around them the
children whirled and screamed and laughed. It was a world of waving
pinafores and thin black-stockinged legs and shrill, sweet voices. In
the great spaces the children's voices had a strangely remote quality;
the sweet, high tones were not such as one heard in the streets or in
houses. In a house or a street these voices thudded upon the air and
beat sonorously back again from the walls, the houses, or the
pavements; but out here the slender sounds sang to a higher tenuity
and disappeared out and up and away into the tree-tops and the clouds
and the wide, windy reaches. The little figures partook also of this
diminuendo effect; against the great grassy curves they seemed smaller
than they really were; the trees stirred hugely above them, the grass
waved vast beneath them, and the sky ringed them in from immensity.
Their forms scarcely disturbed the big outline of nature, their
laughter only whispered against the silence, as ineffectual to disturb
that gigantic serenity as a gnat's wing fluttered against a precipice.

Mary Makebelieve wandered on; a few cows lifted solemnly curious faces
as she passed and swung their heavy heads behind her. Once or twice
half a dozen deer came trotting from beyond the trees, and were
shocked to a halt on seeing her--a moment's gaze, and away like the
wind, bounding in a delicious freedom. Now a butterfly came twisting
on some eccentric journey--ten wing-beats to the left, twenty to the
right, and then back to the left, or, with a sudden twist, returning
on the path which it had already traversed, jerking carelessly through
the sunlight. Across the sky very far up a troop of birds sailed
definitely--they knew where they were going; momently one would detach
itself from the others in a burst of joyous energy and sweep a great
circle and back again to its comrades, and then away, away, away to
the skyline.--Ye swift ones! O, freedom and sweetness! A song falling
from the heavens! A lilt through deep sunshine! Happy wanderers! How
fast ye fly and how bravely--up and up, till the earth has fallen away
and the immeasurable heavens and the deep loneliness of the sunlight
and the silence of great spaces receive you!

Mary Makebelieve came to a tree around which a circular wooden seat
had been placed. Here for a time she sat looking out on the wide
fields. Far away in front the ground rolled down into valleys and up
into little hills, and from the valleys the green heads of trees
emerged, and on the farther hills, in slender, distinct silhouette,
and in great masses, entire trees could be seen. Nearer were single
trees, each with its separate shadow and a stream of sunlight flooding
between; and everywhere the greenery of leaves and of grass and the
gold of myriad buttercups and multitudes of white daisies.

She had been sitting for some time when a shadow came from behind her.
She watched its lengthening and its queer bobbing motion. When it grew
to its greatest length it ceased to move. She felt that some one had
stopped. From the shape of the shadow she knew it was a man, but being
so close she did not like to look. Then a voice spoke. It was a voice
as deep as the rolling of a sea.

"Hello," said the voice; "what are you doing here all alone, young

Mary Makebelieve's heart suddenly spurted to full speed. It seemed to
want more space than her bosom could afford. She looked up. Beside her
stood a prodigious man: one lifted hand curled his moustache, the
other carelessly twirled a long cane. He was dressed in ordinary
clothing, but Mary Makebelieve knew him at once for that great
policeman who guided the traffic at the Grafton Street crossing.


The policeman told her wonderful things. He informed her why the
Phoenix Park was called the Phoenix Park. He did not believe there
was a phoenix in the Zoological Gardens, although they probably had
every kind of bird in the world there. It had never struck him, now he
came to think of it, to look definitely for that bird, but he would do
so the next time he went into the Gardens. Perhaps the young lady
would allow him (it would be a much-appreciated privilege) to escort
her through the Gardens some fine day, the following day for
instance.... He rather inclined to the belief that the phoenix was
extinct--that is, died out; and then, again, when he called to mind
the singular habits with which this bird was credited, he conceived
that it had never had a real but only a mythical existence--that is,
it was a makebelieve bird, a kind of fairy tale.

He further informed Mary Makebelieve that this Park was the third
largest in the world, but the most beautiful. His evidence for this
statement was not only the local newspapers, whose opinion might be
biased by patriotism--that is, led away from the exact truth--but in
the more stable testimony of reputable English journals, such as
_Answers_ and _Tit-Bits_ and _Pearson's Weekly_, he found an
authoritative and gratifying confirmation--that is, they agreed. He
cited for Mary Makebelieve's incredulity the exact immensity of the
Park in miles, in yards, and in acres, and the number of head of
cattle which could be accommodated therein if it were to be utilized
for grazing--that is, turned into grass lands; or, if transformed into
tillage, the number of small farmers who would be the proprietors of
economic holdings--that is, a recondite--that is, an abstruse and a
difficult scientific and sociological term.

Mary Makebelieve scarcely dared lift her glance to his face. An
uncontrollable shyness had taken possession of her. Her eyes could not
lift without an effort: they fluttered vainly upwards, but before
reaching any height they flinched aside and drooped again to her lap.
The astounding thought that she was sitting beside a man warmed and
affrighted her blood so that it rushed burningly to her cheeks and
went shuddering back again coldly. Her downcast eyes were almost
mesmerized by the huge tweed-clad knees which towered like monoliths
beside her. They rose much higher than her knees did, and extended far
out more than a foot and a half beyond her own modest stretch. Her
knees slanted gently downwards as she sat, but his jagged straightly
forward, like the immovable knees of a god which she had seen once in
the Museum. On one of these great knees an equally great hand rested.
Automatically she placed her own hand on her lap and, awe-stricken,
tried to measure the difference. Her hand was very tiny and as white
as snow: it seemed so light that the breathing of a wind might have
fluttered it. The wrist was slender and delicate, and through its
milky covering faint blue veins glimmered. A sudden and passionate
wish came to her as she watched her wrist. She wished she had a red
coral bracelet on it, or a chain of silver beaten into flat discs, or
even two twists of little green beads. The hand that rested on the
neighboring knee was bigger by three times than her own, the skin on
it was tanned to the color of ripe mahogany-wood, and the heat of the
day had caused great purple veins to grow in knots and ridges across
the back and running in big twists down to the wrists. The specific
gravity of that hand seemed tremendous; she could imagine it holding
down the strong neck of a bull. It moved continually while he spoke
to her, closing in a tense strong grip that changed the mahogany color
to a dull whiteness and opening again to a ponderous, inert width.

She was ashamed that she could find nothing to say. Her vocabulary had
suddenly and miserably diminished to a "yes" and "no," only tolerably
varied by a timid "indeed" and "I did not know that." Against the easy
clamor of his speech she could find nothing to oppose, and ordinarily
her tongue tripped and eddied and veered as easily and nonchalantly as
a feather in a wind. But he did not mind silence. He interpreted it
rightly as the natural homage of a girl to a policeman. He liked this
homage because it helped him to feel as big as he looked, and he had
every belief in his ability to conduct a polite and interesting
conversation with any lady for an indefinite time.

After a while Mary Makebelieve arose and was about bidding him a timid
good-by. She wished to go away to her own little room where she could
look at herself and ask herself questions. She wanted to visualize
herself sitting under a tree beside a man. She knew that she could
reconstruct him to the smallest detail, but feared that she might not
be able to reconstruct herself. When she arose he also stood up and
fell so naturally into step beside her that there was nothing to do
but to walk straight on. He still withstood the burden of conversation
easily and pleasantly and very learnedly. He discussed matters of high
political and social moment, explaining generously the more unusual
and learned words that bristled from his vocabulary. Soon they came to
a more populous part of the Park. The children ceased from their play
to gaze round-eyed at the little girl and the big man, their
attendants looked and giggled and envied. Under these eyes Mary
Makebelieve's walk became afflicted with a sideward bias which jolted
her against her companion. She was furious with herself and ashamed.
She set her teeth to walk easily and straightly, but constantly the
jog of his elbow on her shoulder or the swing of his hand against her
blouse sent her ambling wretchedly arms-length from him. When this had
occurred half a dozen times she could have plumped down on the grass
and wept loudly and without restraint. At the Park gate she stopped
suddenly and with the courage of despair bade him good-by. He begged
courteously to be allowed to see her a little way to her home, but she
would not permit it, and so he lifted his hat to her. (Through her
distress she could still note in a subterranean and half-conscious
fashion the fact that this was the first time a man had ever uncovered
before her.) As she went away down the road she felt that his eyes
were following her and her tripping walk hurried almost to a run. She
wished frantically that her dress was longer than it was--that false
hem! If she could have gathered a skirt in her hand the mere holding
on to something would have given her self-possession, but she feared
he was looking critically at her short skirt and immodest ankles.

He stood for a time gazing after her with a smile on his great face.
He knew that she knew he was watching, and as he stood he drew his
hand from his pocket and tapped and smoothed his moustache. He had a
red moustache; it grew very thickly, but was cropped short and square,
and its fiber was so strong that it stood out above his lip like wire.
One expected it to crackle when he touched it, but it never did.


When Mrs. Makebelieve came home that night she seemed very tired, and
complained that her work at Mrs. O'Connor's house was arduous beyond
any which she has yet engaged in. She enumerated the many rooms that
were in the house: those that were covered with carpets, the margins
whereof had to be beeswaxed: those others, only partially covered with
rugs, which had to be entirely waxed: the upper rooms were uncarpeted
and unrugged, and had, therefore, to be scrubbed: the basement,
consisting of two red-flagged kitchens and a scullery, had also to be
scoured out. The lady was very particular about the scouring of
wainscotings and doors. The upper part of the staircase was bare and
had to be scrubbed down, and the part down to the hall had a thin
strip of carpet on it secured by brazen rods; the margins on either
side of this carpet had to be beeswaxed and the brass rods polished.
There was a great deal of unnecessary and vexatious brass of one kind
or another scattered about the house, and as there were four children
in the family, besides Mrs. O'Connor and her two sisters, the amount
of washing which had constantly to be done was enormous and terrifying.

During their tea Mrs. Makebelieve called to mind the different
ornaments which stood on the parlor mantelpiece and on the top of the
piano. There was a china shepherdess with a basket of flowers at one
end of the mantelpiece and an exact duplicate on the other. In the
center a big clock of speckled marble was surmounted by a little domed
edifice with Corinthian pillars in front, and this again was topped by
the figure of an archer with a bent bow--there was nothing on top of
this figure because there was not any room. Between each of these
articles there stood little framed photographs of members of Mrs.
O'Connor's family, and behind all there was a carved looking-glass
with beveled edges having many shelves. Each shelf had a cup or a
saucer or a china bowl on it. On the left-hand side of the fireplace
there was a plaque whereon a young lady dressed in a sky-blue robe
crossed by means of well-defined stepping-stones a thin but furious
stream; the middle distance was embellished by a cow, and the horizon
sustained two white lambs, a brown dog, a fountain and a sun-dial. On
the right-hand side a young gentleman clad in a crimson coat and
yellow knee-breeches carried a three-cornered hat under his arm, and
he also crossed a stream which seemed the exact counterpart of the
other one and whose perspective was similarly complicated. There were
three pictures on each wall--nine in all; three of these were
pictures of ships, three were pictures of battles: two portrayed
saintly but emaciated personages sitting in peculiarly disheartening
wildernesses (each wilderness contained one cactus plant and a camel).
One of these personages stared fixedly at a skull, the other personage
looked with intense firmness away from a lady of scant charms in a
white and all too insufficient robe: above the robe a segment of the
lady's bosom was hinted at bashfully--it was probably this the
personage looked firmly away from. The remaining picture showed a
little girl seated in a big armchair and reading with profound culture
the most massive of bibles: she had her grandmother's mutch cap and
spectacles on, and looked very sweet and solemn; a doll sat bolt
upright beside her, and on the floor a kitten hunted a ball of wool
with great earnestness.

All these things Mrs. Makebelieve discussed to her daughter, as also
of the carpet which might have been woven in Turkey or elsewhere,
the sideboard that possibly was not mahogany, and the chairs and
occasional tables whose legs had attained to rickets through
convulsions; the curtains of cream-colored lace which were reinforced
by rep hangings and guarded shutters from Venice, also the deer's head
which stood on a shelf over the door and was probably shot by a member
of the family in a dream, and the splendid silver tankards which
flanked this trophy and were possibly made of tin.

Mrs. Makebelieve further spoke of the personal characteristics of the
householder with an asperity which was still restrained. She had a
hairy chin, said Mrs. Makebelieve: she had buck teeth and a solid
smile, and was given to telling people who knew their business how
things ought to be done. Beyond this she would not say anything.--The
amount of soap the lady allowed to wash out five rooms and a lengthy
staircase was not as generous as one was accustomed to, but, possibly,
she was well-meaning enough when one came to know her better.

Mary Makebelieve, apropos of nothing, asked her mother did she ever
know a girl who got married to a policeman, and did she think that
policemen were good men?

Her mother replied that policemen were greatly sought after as
husbands for several reasons--firstly, they were big men, and big men
are always good to look upon; secondly, their social standing was very
high and their respectability undoubted; thirdly, a policeman's pay
was such as would bring comfort to any household which was not
needlessly and criminally extravagant; and this was often supplemented
in a variety of ways which rumor only hinted at: there was also the
safe prospect of a pension and the possibility of a sergeantship,
where the emoluments were very great: and fourthly, a policeman, being
subjected for many years to a rigorous discipline, would likely make a
nice and obedient husband. Personally Mrs. Makebelieve did not admire
policemen--they thought too much of themselves, and their continual
pursuit of and intercourse with criminals tended to deteriorate their
moral tone; also, being much admired by a certain type of woman, their
morals were subjected to so continuous an assault that the wife of
such a one would be worn to a shadow in striving to preserve her
husband from designing and persistent females.

Mary Makebelieve said she thought it would be nice to have other women
dying for love of one's husband, but her mother opposed this with the
reflection that such people did not die for love at all, they were
merely anxious to gratify a foolish and excessive pride or to inflict
pain on respectable married women. On the whole, a policeman was not
an ideal person to marry. The hours at which he came home were liable
to constant and vexatious changes, so that there was a continual
feeling of insecurity, which was bad for housekeeping; and if one had
not stability in one's home all discipline and all real home life was
at an end. There was this to be said for them--that they all loved
little children. But, all things considered, a clerk made a better
husband: his hours were regular and, knowing where he was at any
moment, one's mind was at ease.

Mary Makebelieve was burning to tell some one of her adventure during
the day, but although she had never before kept a secret from her
mother she was unable to tell her this one. Something--perhaps the
mere difference of age, and also a kind of shyness--kept her silent.
She wished she knew a nice girl of her own age, or even a little
younger, to whose enraptured ear she might have confided her story.
They would have hugged each other during the recital, and she would
have been able to enlarge upon a hundred trivialities of moustache and
hair and eyes the wonder of which older minds can seldom appreciate.

Her mother said she did not feel at all well. She did not know what
was the matter with her, but she was more tired than she could
remember being for a long time. There was a dull aching in all her
bones, a coldness in her limbs, and when she pressed her hair
backwards it hurt her head; so she went to bed much earlier than was
usual. But long after her regular time for sleep had passed Mary
Makebelieve crouched on the floor before the few warm coals. She was
looking into the redness, seeing visions of rapture, strange things
which could not possibly be true; but these visions warmed her blood
and lifted her heart on light and tremulous wings; there was a singing
in her ears to which she could never be tired listening.


Mrs. Makebelieve felt much better the next morning after the extra
sleep which she had. She still confessed to a slight pain in her scalp
when she brushed her hair and was a little languid, but not so much as
to call for complaint. She sat up in bed while her daughter prepared
the breakfast and her tongue sped as rapidly as heretofore. She said
she had a sort of feeling that her brother Patrick must come back from
America some time, and she was sure that when he did return he would
lose no time in finding out his relatives and sharing with them the
wealth which he had amassed in that rich country. She had memories of
his generosity even as a mere infant when he would always say "no" if
only half a potato remained in the dish or a solitary slice of bread
was on the platter. She delighted to talk of his good looks and high
spirits and of the amazingly funny things he had said and done. There
was always, of course, the chance that Patrick had got married and
settled down in America, and, if so, that would account for so prolonged
a silence. Wives always came between a man and his friends, and this
woman would do all she could to prevent Patrick benefiting his own
sister and her child. Even in Ireland there were people like that, and
the more one heard of America the less one knew what to expect from
the strange people who were native to that place. She had often thought
she would like to go out there herself, and, indeed, if she had a little
money she would think nothing of packing up her things to-morrow and
setting out for the States. There were fine livings to be made there,
and women were greatly in request, both as servants and wives. It was
well known, too, that the Americans loved Irish people, and so there
would be no difficulty at all in getting a start. The more she thought
of Mrs. O'Connor the more favorably she pondered on emigration. She
would say nothing against Mrs. O'Connor yet, but the fact remained that
she had a wen on her cheek and buck teeth. Either of these afflictions
taken separately were excusable, but together she fancied they betoken
a bad, sour nature; but maybe the woman was to be pitied: she might be
a nice person in herself, but, then, there was the matter of the soap,
and she was very fond of giving unnecessary orders. However, time would
show, and, clients being as scarce as they were, one could not quarrel
with one's bread and butter.

The opening of a door and the stamping downstairs of heavy feet shot
Mrs. Makebelieve from her bed and into her clothing with furious speed.
Within five minutes she was dressed, and after kissing her daughter
three times she fled down the stairs and away to her business.

Mary had obtained her mother's consent to do as she pleased with the
piece of black velvet on the hem of her Sunday skirt, so she passed
some time in ripping this off and cleaning it. It would not come as
fresh as she desired, and there were some parts of it frayed and
rubbed so that the velvet was nearly lost, but other portions were
quite good, and by cutting out the worn parts and neatly joining the
good pieces she at last evolved a quite passable sash. Having the sash
ready she dressed herself to see how it looked, and was delighted.
Then becoming dissatisfied with the severe method of doing her hair
she manipulated it gently for a few minutes until a curl depended by
both ears and two or three very tiny ones fluttered above her
forehead. She put on her hat and stole out, walking very gently for
fear any of the other people in the house would peep through their
doors as she went by. Walk as gently as she could these bare, solid
stairs rang loudly to each footfall, and so she ended in a rush and
was out and away without daring to look if she was observed. She had a
sort of guilty feeling as she walked, which she tried to allay by
saying very definitely that she was not doing anything wrong. She said
to herself with determined candor that she would walk up to the St.
Stephen's Green Park and look at the ducks and the flower-beds and the
eels, but when she reached the quays she blushed deeply, and turning
towards the right went rapidly in the direction of the Phoenix Park.
She told herself that she was not going in there, but would merely
take a walk by the river, cross at Island Bridge, and go back on the
opposite side of the Liffey to the Green. But when she saw the broad
sunlit road gleaming through the big gates she thought she would go
for a little way up there to look at the flowers behind the railings.
As she went in a great figure came from behind the newspaper kiosk
outside the gates and followed Mary up the road. When she paused to
look at the flowers the great figure halted also, and when she went on
again it followed. Mary walked past the Gough Statue and turned away
into the fields and the trees, and here the figure lengthened its
stride. In the middle of the field a big shadow bobbed past her
shoulder, and she walked on holding her breath and watching the shadow
growing by queer forward jerks. In a moment the dull beat of feet on
grass banished all thought of the shadow, and then there came a
cheerful voice in her ears, and the big policeman was standing by her
side. For a few moments they were stationary, making salutation and
excuse and explanation, and then they walked slowly on through the
sunshine. Wherever there was a bush there were flowers on it. Every
tree was thronged with birds that sang shrilly and sweetly in sudden
thrills and clear sustained melodies, but in the open spaces the
silence was more wonderful; there was no bird note to come between
Mary and that deep voice, no shadow of a tree to swallow up their own
two shadows; and the sunlight was so mildly warm, the air was so sweet
and pure, and the little wind that hushed by from the mountains was a
tender and a peaceful wind.


After that day Mary Makebelieve met her new friend frequently.
Somehow, wherever she went, he was not far away; he seemed to spring
out of space--one moment she was alone watching the people passing and
the hurrying cars and the thronged and splendid shop windows, and then
a big voice was booming down to her and a big form was pacing
deliberately by her side. Twice he took her into a restaurant and gave
her lunch. She had never been in a restaurant before, and it seemed to
her like a place in fairyland. The semi-darkness of the retired rooms
faintly colored by tiny electric lights, the beautifully clean tables
and the strange foods, the neatly dressed waitresses with quick, deft
movements and gravely attentive faces--these things thrilled her. She
noticed that the girls in the restaurant, in spite of their gravity
and industry, observed both herself and the big man with the minutest
inspection, and she felt that they all envied her the attentions of so
superb a companion. In the street also she found that many people
looked at them, but, listening to his constant and easy speech, she
could not give these people the attention they deserved.

When they did not go to the Park they sought the most reserved streets
or walked out to the confines of the town and up by the River Dodder.
There are exquisitely beautiful places along the side of the Dodder:
shy little harbors and backwaters, and now and then a miniature
waterfall or a broad placid reach upon which the sun beats down like
silver. Along the river bank the grass grows rank and wildly
luxurious, and at this season, warmed by the sun, it was a splendid
place to sit. She thought she could sit there forever watching the
shining river and listening to the great voice by her side.

He told her many things about himself and about his comrades--those
equally huge men. She could see them walking with slow vigor through
their barrack-yard, falling in for exercise or gymnastics or for
school. She wondered what they were taught, and who had sufficient
impertinence to teach giants, and were they ever slapped for not
knowing their lessons? He told her of his daily work, the hours when
he was on and off duty, the hours when he rose in the morning and when
he went to bed. He told her of night duty, and drew a picture of the
blank deserted streets which thrilled and frightened her ... the tense
darkness, and how through the silence the sound of a footstep was
magnified a thousandfold, ringing down the desolate pathways away and
away to the smallest shrill distinctness, and she saw also the alleys
and lane-ways hooded in blackness, and the one or two human fragments
who drifted aimless and frantic along the lonely streets, striving to
walk easily for fear of their own thundering footsteps, cowering in
the vastness of the city, dwarfed and shivering beside the gaunt
houses; the thousands upon thousands of black houses, each deadly
silent, each seeming to wait and listen for the morning, and each
teeming with men and women who slept in peace because he was walking
up and down outside, flashing his lantern on shop windows and feeling
doors to see if they were by any chance open. Now and again a step
from a great distance would tap-tap-tap, a far-off delicacy of sound,
and either die away down echoing side streets or come clanking on to
where he stood, growing louder and clearer and more resonant, ringing
again and again in doubled and trebled echoes; while he, standing far
back in a doorway, watched to see who was abroad at the dead of
night--and then that person went away on his strange errand, his
footsteps tramping down immense distances, till the last echo and the
last faint tremble of his feet eddied into the stillness. Now and
again a cat dodged gingerly along a railing, or a strayed dog slunk
fearfully down the pathway, nosing everywhere in and out of the
lamplight, silent and hungry and desperately eager. He told her
stories also, wonderful tales of great fights and cunning tricks, of
men and women whose whole lives were tricks, of people who did not
know how to live except by theft and violence; people who were born by
stealth, who ate by subterfuge, drank by dodges, got married in antics
and slid into death by strange, subterranean passages. He told her the
story of the Two Hungry Men, and of The Sailor Who Had Been Robbed,
and a funny tale about the Barber Who Had Two Mothers. He also told
her the stories of The Eight Tinkers, and of the Old Women Who Steal
Fish at Nighttime, and the story of The Man He Let Off, and he told
her a terrible story of how he fought five men in a little room, and
he showed her a great livid scar hidden by his cap, and the marks in
his neck where he had been stabbed with a jagged bottle, and his wrist
which an Italian mad-man had thrust through and through with a dagger.

But though he was always talking he was not always talking of himself.
Through his conversation there ran a succession of queries--tiny
slender questions which ran out of his stories and into her life.
Questions so skillful and natural and spontaneous that only a girl
could discover the curiosity which prompted them. He wanted her name,
her address, her mother's name, her father's name; had she other
relatives, did she go to work yet, what was her religion, was it a
long time since she left school, and what was her mother's business?
To all of these Mary Makebelieve answered with glad candor. She saw
each question coming, and the personal curiosity lying behind it she
divined and was glad of. She would have loved to ask him personal and
intimate questions about his parents, his brothers and sisters, and
what he said when he said his prayers, and had he walked with other
girls, and, if so, what had he said to them, and what did he really
and truly think of her? Her curiosity on all these points was abundant
and eager, but she did not dare to even hint a question.

One of the queries often touched upon by him she eluded--she shrank
from it with something like terror--it was, "What was her mother's
business?" She could not bear to say that her mother was a charwoman.
It did not seem fitting. She suddenly hated and was ashamed of this
occupation. It took on an aspect of incredible baseness. It seemed to
be the meanest employment wherein any one could be engaged; and so
when the question, conveyed in a variety of ways, had to be answered
it was answered with reservations--Mary Makebelieve told him a lie.
She said her mother was a dressmaker.


One night when Mrs. Makebelieve came home she was very low-spirited
indeed. She complained once more of a headache and of a languor which
she could not account for. She said it gave her all the trouble in the
world to lift a bucket. It was not exactly that she could not lift a
bucket, but that she could scarcely close her mind down to the fact
that a bucket had to be lifted. Some spring of willingness seemed to
be temporarily absent. To close her two hands on a floor-cloth and
twist it into a spiral in order to wring it thoroughly was a thing
which she found herself imagining she could do if she liked, but had
not the least wish to do. These duties, even when she was engaged in
them, had a curious quality of remoteness. The bucket into which her
hand had been plunged a moment before seemed somehow incredibly
distant. To lift the soap lying beside the bucket one would require an
arm of more than human reach, and having washed, or rather dabbed, at
a square of flooring, it was a matter of grave concern how to reach
the unwashed part just beyond without moving herself. This languor
alarmed her. The pain in her head, while it was severe, did not really
matter. Every one had pains and aches, sores and sprains, but this
unknown weariness and disinclination for the very slightest exertion
gave her a fright.

Mary tempted her to come out and watch the people going into the
Gayety Theater. She said a certain actor was playing whom all the
women of Dublin make pilgrimages, even from distant places, to look
at; and by going at once they might be in time to see him arriving in
a motor car at the stage door, when they could have a good look at him
getting out of the car and going into the theater. At these tidings
Mrs. Makebelieve roused for a moment from her strange apathy. Since
tea-time she had sat (not as usual upright and gesticulating, but
humped up and flaccid) staring at a blob of condensed milk on the
outside of the tin. She said she thought she would go out and see the
great actor, although what all the women saw in him to go mad about
she did not know, but in another moment she settled back to her
humped-up position and restored her gaze to the condensed milk tin.
With a little trouble Mary got her to bed, where, after being hugged
for one moment, she went swiftly and soundly to sleep.

Mary was troubled because of her mother's illness, but, as it is
always difficult to believe in the serious illness of another person
until death has demonstrated its gravity, she soon dismissed the
matter from her mind. This was the more easily done because her mind
was teeming with impressions and pictures and scraps of dialogue.

As her mother was sleeping peacefully, Mary put on her hat and went
out. She wanted, in her then state of mind, to walk in the solitude
which can only be found in crowded places, and also she wanted some
kind of distraction. Her days had lately been so filled with adventure
that the placid immobility of the top back room was not only irksome,
but maddening, and her mother's hasty and troubled breathing came
between her and her thoughts. The poor furniture of the room was
hideous to her eyes, the uncarpeted floor and bleak, stained walls
dulled her.

She went out, and in a few moments was part of the crowd which passes
and repasses nightly from the Rotunda up the broad pathways of
Sackville Street, across O'Connell Bridge, up Westmoreland Street,
past Trinity College, and on through the brilliant lights of Grafton
Street to the Fusiliers' Arch at the entrance to St. Stephen's Green
Park. Here from half-past seven o'clock in the evening youthful
Dublin marches in joyous procession. Sometimes bevies of young girls
dance by, each a giggle incarnate. A little distance behind these a
troop of young men follow stealthily and critically. They will be
acquainted and more or less happily paired before the Bridge is
reached. But generally the movement is in couples. Appointments,
dating from the previous night, have filled the streets with happy and
careless boys and girls--they are not exactly courting, they are
enjoying the excitement of fresh acquaintance; old conversation is
here poured into new bottles, old jokes have the freshness of infancy,
every one is animated, and polite to no one but his partner; the
people they meet and pass and those who overtake and pass them are all
subjects for their wit and scorn, while they, in turn, furnish a
moment's amusement and conversation to each succeeding couple.
Constantly there are stoppages when very high-bred introductions
result in a redistribution of the youngsters. As they move apart the
words "To-morrow night," or "Thursday," or "Friday," are called
laughingly back, showing that the late partner is not to be lost sight
of utterly; and then the procession begins anew.

Among these folk Mary Makebelieve passed rapidly. She knew that if she
walked slowly some partially elaborate gentleman would ask suddenly
what she had been doing with herself since last Thursday? and would
introduce her as Kate Ellen to six precisely similar young gentlemen,
who smiled blandly in a semi-circle six feet distant. This had
happened to her once before, and as she fled the six young gentlemen
had roared "bow, wow, wow" after her, while the seventh mewed
earnestly and with noise.

She stood for a time watching the people thronging into the Gayety
Theater. Some came in motor cars, others in carriages. Many
hearse-like cabs deposited weighty and respectable solemnities under
the glass-roofed vestibule. Swift outside cars buzzed on rubber tires
with gentlemen clad in evening dress, and ladies whose silken wraps
blew gently from their shoulders, and, in addition, a constant
pedestrian stream surged along the pathway. From the shelter of an
opposite doorway Mary watched these gayly animated people. She envied
them all innocently enough, and wondered would the big policeman ever
ask her to go to the theater with him, and if he did, would her mother
let her go. She thought her mother would refuse, but was dimly certain
that in some way she would manage to get out if such a delightful
invitation were given her. She was dreaming of the alterations she
would make in her best frock in anticipation of such a treat when,
half-consciously, she saw a big figure appear round the corner of
Grafton Street and walk towards the theater. It was he, and her heart
jumped with delight. She prayed that he would not see her, and then
she prayed that he would, and then, with a sudden, sickening coldness,
she saw that he was not alone. A young, plump, rosy-cheeked girl was
at his side. As they came nearer the girl put her arm into his and said
something. He bent down to her and replied, and she flashed a laugh up
at him. There was a swift interchange of sentences, and they both
laughed together, then they disappeared into the half-crown door.

Mary shrank back into the shadow of the doorway. She had a strange
notion that everybody was trying to look at her, and that they were
all laughing maliciously. After a few moments she stepped out on the
path and walked homewards quickly. She did not hear the noises of the
streets, nor see the promenading crowds. Her face was bent down as she
walked, and beneath the big brim of her straw hat her eyes were
blinded with the bitterest tears she had ever shed.


Next morning her mother was no better. She made no attempt to get out
of bed, and listened with absolute indifference when the morning feet
of the next-door man pounded the stairs. Mary awakened her again and
again, but each time, after saying "All right, dearie," she relapsed
to a slumber which was more torpor than sleep. Her yellow, old-ivory
face was faintly tinged with color; her thin lips were relaxed, and
seemed a trifle fuller, so that Mary thought she looked better in
sickness than in health; but the limp arm lying on the patchwork quilt
seemed to be more skinny than thin, and the hand was more waxen and
claw-like than heretofore.

Mary laid the breakfast on the bed as usual, and again awakened her
mother, who, after staring into vacancy for a few moments, forced
herself to her elbow, and then, with sudden determination, sat up in
the bed and bent her mind inflexibly on her breakfast. She drank two
cups of tea greedily, but the bread had no taste in her mouth, and
after swallowing a morsel she laid it aside.

"I don't know what's up with me at all, at all," said she.

"Maybe it's a cold, mother," replied Mary.

"Do I look bad, now?"

Mary scrutinized her narrowly.

"No," she answered, "your face is redder than it does be, and your eyes
are shiny. I think you look splendid and well. What way do you feel?"

"I don't feel at all, except that I'm sleepy. Give me the glass in my
hand, dearie, till I see what I'm like."

Mary took the glass from the wall and handed it to her.

"I don't look bad at all. A bit of color always suited me. Look at my
tongue, though, it's very, very dirty; it's a bad tongue altogether.
My mother had a tongue like that, Mary, when she died."

"Have you any pain?" said her daughter.

"No, dearie; there is a buzz in the front of my head as if something
was spinning round and round very quickly, and that makes my eyes
tired, and there's a sort of feeling as if my head was twice as heavy
as it should be. Hang up the glass again. I'll try and get a sleep,
and maybe I'll be better when I waken up. Run you out and get a bit of
steak, and we'll stew it down and make beef tea, and maybe that will
do me good. Give me my purse out of the pocket of my skirt."

Mary found the purse and brought it to the bed. Her mother opened it
and brought out a thimble, a bootlace, five buttons, one sixpenny
piece and a penny. She gave Mary the sixpence.

"Get half a pound of leg beef," said she, "and then we'll have
fourpence left for bread and tea; no, take the other penny, too, and
get half a pound of pieces at the butcher's for twopence and a
twopenny tin of condensed milk, that's fourpence, and a three ha'penny
loaf and one penny for tea, that's sixpence ha'penny, and get onions
with the odd ha'penny, and we'll put them in the beef tea. Don't
forget, dearie, to pick lean bits of meat; them fellows do be always
trying to stick bits of bone and gristle on a body. Tell him it's for
beef tea for your mother, and that I'm not well at all, and ask how
Mrs. Quinn is; she hasn't been down in the shop for a long time. I'll
go to sleep now. I'll have to go to work in the morning whatever
happens, because there isn't any money in the house at all. Come home
as quick as you can, dearie."

Mary dressed herself and went out for the provisions, but she did not
buy them at once. As she went down the street she turned suddenly,
clasping her hands in a desperate movement, and walked very quickly
in the opposite direction. She turned up the side streets to the
quays, and along these to the Park Gates. Her hands were clasping and
unclasping in an agony of impatience, and her eyes roved busily here
and there, flying among the few pedestrians like lanterns. She went
through the gates and up the broad central path, and here she walked
more slowly: but she did not see the flowers behind the railings, or
even the sunshine that bathed the world in glory. At the monument she
sped a furtive glance down the road she had traveled--there was nobody
behind her. She turned into the fields, walking under trees which she
did not see, and up hills and down valleys without noticing the
incline of either. At times, through the tatter of her mind there
blazed a memory of her mother lying sick at home, waiting for her
daughter to return with food, and at such memories she gripped her
hands together frightfully and banished the thought.--A moment's
reflection and she could have hated her mother.

It was nearly five o'clock before she left the Park. She walked in a
fog of depression. For hours she had gone hither and thither in the
well-remembered circle, every step becoming more wayward and aimless.
The sun had disappeared, and a gray evening bowed down upon the
fields; the little wind that whispered along the grass or swung the
light branches of the trees had a bleak edge to it. As she left the
big gates she was chilled through and through, but the memory of her
mother now set her running homewards. For the time she forgot her
quest among the trees and thought only, with shame and fear, of what
her mother would say, and of the reproachful, amazed eyes which would
be turned on her when she went in. What could she say? She could not
imagine anything. How could she justify a neglect which must appear
gratuitous, cold-blooded, inexplicable?

When she had brought the food and climbed the resonant stairs she
stood outside the door crying softly to herself. She hated to open the
door. She could imagine her mother sitting up in the bed dazed and
unbelieving, angry and frightened, imagining accidents and terrors,
and when she would go in ... she had an impulse to open the door
gently, leave the food just inside and run down the stairs out into
the world anywhere and never come back again. At last in desperation
she turned the handle and stepped inside. Her face flamed, the blood
burned her eyes physically so that she could not see through them. She
did not look at the bed, but went direct to the fireplace, and with a
dogged patience began mending the fire. After a few stubborn moments
she twisted violently to face whatever might come, ready to break into
angry reproaches and impertinences, but her mother was lying very
still. She was fast asleep, and a weight, an absolutely real pressure,
was lifted from Mary's heart. Her fingers flew about the preparation
of the beef tea. She forgot the man whom she had gone to meet. Her
arms were tired and hungry to close around her mother. She wanted to
whisper little childish words to her, to rock her to and fro on her
breast, and croon little songs and kiss her, and pat her face.


Her mother did not get better. Indeed, she got worse. In addition to
the lassitude of which she had complained she suffered also from great
heat and great cold, and, furthermore, sharp pains darted so swiftly
through her brows that at times she was both dizzy and sightless. A
twirling movement in her head prevented her from standing up. Her
center of gravity seemed destroyed, for when she did stand and
attempted to walk she had a strange bearing away on one side, so that
on striving to walk towards the door she veered irresistibly at least
four feet to the left-hand side of that point. Mary Makebelieve helped
her back to bed, where she lay for a time watching horizontal lines
spinning violently in front of her face, and these lines after a time
crossed and recrossed each other in so mazy and intricate a pattern
that she became violently sick from the mere looking at them.

All of these things she described to her daughter, tracing the queer
patterns which were spinning about her with such fidelity that Mary
was almost able to see them. She also theorized about the cause and
ultimate effect of these symptoms, and explained the degrees of heat
and cold which burned or chilled her, and the growth of a pain to its
exquisite startling apex, its subsequent slow recession, and the thud
of an india-rubber hammer which ensued when the pain had ebbed to its
easiest level. It did not occur to either of them to send for a
doctor. Doctors in such cases are seldom sent for, seldom even thought
of. One falls sick according to some severely definite, implacable law
with which it is foolish to quarrel, and one gets well again for no
other reason than that it is impossible to be sick forever. As the
night struggles slowly into day so sickness climbs stealthily into
health, and nature has a system of medicining her ailments which might
only be thwarted by the ministrations of a mere doctor. Doctors also
expect payment for their services--an expectation so wildly beyond the
range of common sense as to be ludicrous. Those who can scarcely fee a
baker when they are in health can certainly not remunerate a physician
when they are ill.

But, despite her sickness, Mrs. Makebelieve was worried with the
practical common politics of existence. The food purchased with her
last sevenpence was eaten beyond remembrance. The vital requirements
of the next day and the following day and of all subsequent days
thronged upon her, clamoring for instant attention. The wraith of a
landlord sat on her bed demanding rent and threatening grisly
alternatives. Goblins that were bakers and butchers and grocers
grinned and leered and jabbered from the corners of the room.

Each day Mary Makebelieve went to the pawn office with something. They
lived for a time on the only capital they had--the poor furniture of
their room. Everything which had even the narrowest margin of value
was sold. Mary's dresses kept them for six days. Her mother's Sunday
skirt fed them for another day. They held famine at bay with a patchwork
quilt and a crazy washstand. A water-jug and a strip of oilcloth tinkled
momentarily against the teeth of the wolf and disappeared. The maw of
hunger was not incommoded by the window curtain.

At last the room was as bare as a desert and almost as uninhabitable.
A room without furniture is a ghostly place. Sounds made therein are
uncanny, even the voice puts off its humanity and rings back with a
bleak and hollow note, an empty resonance tinged with the frost of
winter. There is no other sound so deadly, so barren and dispiriting
as the echoes of an empty room. The gaunt woman in the bed seemed
less gaunt than her residence, and there was nothing more to be sent
to the pawnbroker or the secondhand dealer.

A post-card came from Mrs. O'Connor requesting, in a peremptory
language customary to such communications, that Mrs. Makebelieve would
please call on her the following morning before eight o'clock. Mrs.
Makebelieve groaned as she read it. It meant work and food and the
repurchase of her household goods, and she knew that on the following
morning she would not be able to get up. She lay a while thinking, and
then called her daughter.

"Deary," said she, "you will have to go to this place in the morning
and try what you can do. Tell Mrs. O'Connor that I am sick, and that
you are my daughter and will do the work, and try and do the best you
can for a while."

She caught her daughter's head down to her bosom and wept over her,
for she saw in this work a beginning and an end, the end of the
little daughter who could be petted and rocked and advised, the
beginning of a womanhood which would grow up to and beyond her, which
would collect and secrete emotions and aspirations and adventures not
to be shared even by a mother, and she saw the failure which this work
meant, the expanding of her daughter's life ripples to a bleak and
miserable horizon where the clouds were soapsuds and floor cloths, and
the beyond a blank resignation only made energetic by hunger.

"Oh, my dear," said she, "I hate to think of you having to do such
work, but it will only be for a while, a week, and then I will be well
again. Only a little week, my love, my sweetheart, my heart's darling."


Early on the following morning Mary Makebelieve awakened with a start.
She felt as if some one had called her, and lay for a few moments to
see had her mother spoken. But her mother was still asleep. Her
slumber was at all times almost as energetic as her wakening hours.
She twisted constantly and moved her hands and spoke ramblingly. Odd
interjections, such as "ah, well, no matter, certainly not, and indeed
aye," shot from her lips like bullets, and at intervals a sarcastic
sniff fretted or astonished her bedfellow into wakefulness. But now as
she lay none of these strenuous ejaculations were audible. Sighs only,
weighty and deep drawn and very tired, broke on her lips and lapsed
sadly into the desolate room.

Mary Makebelieve lay for a time wondering idly what had awakened her
so completely, for her eyes were wide open and every vestige of sleep
was gone from her brain; and then she remembered that on this morning,
and for the first time in her life, she had to go to work. That
knowledge had gone to bed with her and had awakened her with an
imperious urgency. In an instant she sprang out of bed, huddled on
sufficient clothing for warmth, and set about lighting the fire. She
was far too early awake, but could not compose herself to lie for
another moment in bed. She did not at all welcome the idea of going to
work, but the interest attaching to a new thing, the freshness which
vitalizes for a time even the dreariest undertaking, prevented her
from rueing with any bitterness her first day's work. To a young
person even work is an adventure, and anything which changes the usual
current of life is welcome. The fire also went with her; in quite a
short time the flames had gathered to a blaze, and matured, and
concentrated to the glowing redness of perfect combustion, then, when
the smoke had disappeared with the flames, she put on the saucepan of
water. Quickly the saucepan boiled, and she wet the tea. She cut the
bread into slices, put a spoonful of condensed milk into each cup, and
awakened her mother.

All through the breakfast her mother advised her on the doing of her
work. She cautioned her daughter when scrubbing woodwork always to
scrub against the grain, for this gave a greater purchase to the brush,
and removed the dirt twice as quickly as the seemingly easy opposite
movement. She told her never to save soap. Little soap meant much
rubbing, and advised that she should scrub two minutes with one hand
and then two minutes with the other hand, and she was urgent on the
necessity of thoroughness in the wringing out of one's floor cloth,
because a dry floor cloth takes up twice as much water as a wet one,
and thus lightens labor; also she advised Mary to change her positions
as frequently as possible to avoid cramp when scrubbing, and to kneel
up or stand up when wringing her cloths, as this would give her a rest,
and the change of movement would relieve her very greatly, and above
all to take her time about the business, because haste seldom resulted
in clean work, and was never appreciated by one's employer.

Before going out Mary Makebelieve had to arrange for some one to look
after her mother during the day. This is an arrangement which, among
poor people, is never difficult of accomplishment. The first to whom
she applied was the laboring man's wife in the next room; she was a
vast woman with six children and a laugh like the rolling of a great
wind, and when Mary Makebelieve advanced her request she shook six
children off her like toys and came out on the landing.

"Run off to your work now, honey," said she, "and let you be easy in
your mind about your mother, for I'll go up to her this minute, and when
I'm not there myself I'll leave one of the children with her to call me
if she wants anything, and don't you be fretting at all, God help you!
for she'll be as safe and as comfortable with me as if she was in Jervis
Street Hospital or the Rotunda itself. What's wrong with her now? Is it
a pain in her head she has or a sick stomach, God help her?"

Mary explained briefly, and as she went down the stairs she saw the
big woman going into her mother's room.

She had not been out in the streets so early before, and had never
known the wonder and beauty of the sun in the early morning. The
streets were almost deserted, and the sunlight--a most delicate and
nearly colorless radiance--fell gently on the long silent paths.
Missing the customary throng of people and traffic she seemed almost
in a strange country, and had to look twice for turnings which she
could easily have found with her eyes shut. The shutters were up in
all the shops and the blinds were down in most of the windows. Now and
again a milk cart came clattering and rattling down a street, and now
and again a big red-painted baker's cart dashed along the road. Such
few pedestrians as she met were poorly dressed men, who carried tommy
cans and tools, and they were all walking at a great pace, as if they
feared they were late for somewhere. Three or four boys passed her
running; one of these had a great lump of bread in his hand, and as he
ran he tore pieces off the bread with his teeth and ate them. The
streets looked cleaner than she had thought they could look, and the
houses seemed very quiet and beautiful. When she came near a policeman
she looked at him keenly from a distance, hoping and fearing that it
might be her friend, but she did not see him. She had a sinking
feeling at the thought that maybe he would be in the Phoenix Park
this day looking for her, and might, indeed, have been there for the
past few days, and the thought that he might be seeking for her
unavailingly stabbed through her mind like a pain. It did not seem
right, it was not in proportion, that so big a man should seek for a
mere woman and not find one instantly to hand. It was pitiful to think
of the huge man looking on this side and on that, peering behind trees
and through distances, and thinking that maybe he was forgotten or
scorned. Mary Makebelieve almost wept at the idea that he should fancy
she scorned him. She wondered how, under such circumstances, a small
girl can comfort a big man. One may fondle his hand, but that is
miserably inadequate. She wished she was twice as big as he was, so
that she might lift him bodily to her breast and snuggle and hug him
like a kitten. So comprehensive an embrace alone could atone for
injury to a big man's feelings.

In about twenty minutes she reached Mrs. O'Connor's house and knocked.
She had to knock half a dozen times before she was admitted, and on
being admitted had a great deal of trouble explaining who she was, and
why her mother had not come, and that she was quite competent to
undertake the work. She knew the person who opened the door for her
was not Mrs. O'Connor, because she had not a hairy wart on her chin,
nor had she buck teeth. After a little delay she was brought to the
scullery and given a great pile of children's clothing to wash, and
after starting this work she was left to herself for a long time.


It was a dark house. The windows were all withered away behind stiff
curtains, and the light that labored between these was chastened to
the last degree of respectability. The doors skulked behind heavy
plush hangings. The floors hid themselves decently under thick red and
black carpets, and the margins which were uncarpeted were disguised by
beeswax, so that no one knew they were there at all. The narrow hall
was steeped in shadow, for there two black velvet portieres, at
distances of six feet apart, depended from rods in the ceiling.
Similar palls flopped on each landing of the staircase, and no sound
was heard in the house at all, except dim voices that droned from
somewhere, muffled and sepulchral and bodyless.

At ten o'clock, having finished the washing, Mary was visited by Mrs.
O'Connor, whom she knew at once by the signs she had been warned of.
The lady subjected each article that had been washed to a particular
scrutiny, and, with the shadowy gallop of a smile that dashed into and
out of sight in an instant, said they would do. She then conducted
Mary to the kitchen and, pointing to a cup of tea and two slices of
bread, invited her to breakfast, and left her for six minutes, when
she reappeared with the suddenness of a marionette and directed her to
wash her cup and saucer, and then to wash the kitchen, and these
things also Mary did.

She got weary very soon, but not dispirited, because there were many
things to look at in the kitchen. There were pots of various sizes and
metals, saucepans little and big, jugs of all shapes, and a regiment
of tea things were ranged on the dresser; on the walls were hung great
pot lids like the shields of barbarous warriors which she had seen in
a story book. Under the kitchen table there was a row of boots all
wrinkled by usage, and each wearing a human and almost intelligent
aspect--a well-wrinkled boot has often an appearance of mad humanity
which can chain and almost hypnotize the observer. As she lifted the
boots out of her way she named each by its face. There was Grubtoes,
Sloucher, Thump-thump, Hoppit, Twitter, Hide-away, and Fairybell.

While she was working a young girl came into the kitchen and took up
the boots called Fairybell. Mary just tossed a look at her as she
entered and bent again to her washing. Then with an extreme
perturbation she stole another look. The girl was young and as trim as
a sunny garden. Her face was packed with laughter and freedom, like a
young morning when tender rosy clouds sail in the sky. She walked with
a light spring of happiness; each step seemed the beginning of a
dance, light and swift and certain. Mary knew her in a pang, and her
bent face grew redder than the tiles she was scrubbing. Like lightning
she knew her. Her brain swung in a clamor of "where, where?" and even
in the question she had the answer, for this was the girl she had seen
going into the Gayety Theater swinging on the arm of her big
policeman. The girl said good morning to her in a kindly voice, and
Mary with a swift, frightened glance, whispered back good morning,
then the girl went upstairs again, and Mary continued to scrub the

When the kitchen was finished and inspected and approved of, she was
instructed to wash out the front hall, and set about the work at once.

"Get it done as quickly as you can," said the mistress, "I am
expecting my nephew here soon, and he dislikes washing."

So Mary bent quickly to her work. She was not tired now. Her hands
moved swiftly up and down the floor without effort. Indeed, her
actions were almost mechanical. The self that was thinking and probing
seemed somehow apart from the body bending over the bucket, and the
hands that scrubbed and dipped and wrung. She had finished about three
quarters of the hall when a couple of sharp raps came to the door.
Mrs. O'Connor flew noiselessly up from the kitchen.

"I knew," said she, bitterly, "that you would not be finished before
he came. Dry that puddle at once, so that he can walk in, and take the
soap out of the way."

She stood with her hand on the door while Mary followed these
directions, then, when a couple of hasty movements had removed the
surplus water, Mrs. O'Connor drew the bolt and her nephew entered.
Mary knew him on the doorstep, and her blood froze in terror and
boiled again in shame.

Mrs. O'Connor drew the big policeman inside and kissed him.

"I can't get these people to do things in time," said she. "They are
that slow. Hang up your hat and coat and come into the parlor."

The policeman, with his eyes fixed steadily on Mary, began to take off
his coat. His eyes, his moustache, all his face and figure seemed to
be looking at her. He was an enormous and terrifying interrogation. He
tapped his tough moustache and stepped over the bucket; at the entrance
to the parlor he stood again and hung his monstrous look on her. He
seemed about to speak, but it was to Mrs. O'Connor his words went.

"How's everything?" said he, and then the door closed behind him.

Mary, with extraordinary slowness, knelt down again beside the bucket
and began to scrub. She worked very deliberately, sometimes cleaning
the same place two or three times. Now and again she sighed, but
without any consciousness of trouble. These were sighs which did not
seem to belong to her. She knew she was sighing, but could not
exactly see how the dull sounds came from her lips when she had no
desire to sigh and did not make any conscious effort to do so. Her
mind was an absolute blank, she could think of nothing but the bubbles
which broke on the floor and in the bucket, and the way the water
squeezed down from the cloth. There was something she could have
thought about if she wanted to, but she did not want to.

Mrs. O'Connor came out in, a few minutes, inspected the hall and said
it would do. She paid Mary her wages and told her to come again the
next day, and Mary went home. As she walked along she was very careful
not to step on any of the lines on the pavement; she walked between
these, and was distressed because these lines were not equally distant
from each other, so that she had to make unequal paces as she went.


The name of the woman from next door was Mrs. Cafferty. She was big
and round, and when she walked her dress whirled about her like a
tempest. She seemed to be always turning round; when she was going
straight forward in any direction, say towards a press, she would turn
aside midway so sharply that her clothing spun gustily in her
wake--This probably came from having many children. A mother is
continually driving in oblique directions from her household employments
to rescue her children from a multitude of perils. An infant and a
fireplace act upon each other like magnets; a small boy is always trying
to eat a kettle or a piece of coal or the backbone of a herring; a
little girl and a slop bucket are in immediate contact; the baby has a
knife in its mouth; the twin is on the point of swallowing a marble, or
is trying to wash itself in the butter, or the cat is about to take a
nap on its face. Indeed, the woman who has six children never knows in
what direction her next step must be, and the continual strain of
preserving her progeny converts many a one into regular cyclones of
eyes and arms and legs. It also induces in some a perpetual good-humored
irritability wherein one can slap and cuddle a child in the same
instant, or shout threateningly or lovingly, call warningly and murmur
encouragingly in an astonishing sequence. The woman with six children
must both physically and mentally travel at a tangent, and when a
husband has to be badgered or humored into the bargain, then the life
of such a woman is more complex than is readily understood.

When Mary came home Mrs. Cafferty was sitting on her mother's bed, two
small children and a cat were also on the bed, two slightly bigger
children were under the bed, and two others were galloping furiously
up and down the room. At one moment these latter twain were runaway
horses, at another they were express trains. When they were horses
they snorted and neighed and kicked, when they were trains they backed
and shunted, blew whistles and blew off steam. The children under the
bed were tigers in a jungle, and they made the noises proper to such
beasts and such a place; they bit each other furiously, and howled and
growled precisely as tigers do. The pair of infants on the bed were
playing the game of bump; they would stand upright, then spring high
into the air and come crashing down on the bed, which then sprung them
partly up again. Each time they jumped they screamed loudly, each time
they fell they roared delighted congratulations to each other, and
when they fell together they fought with strong good humor. Sometimes
they fell on Mrs. Makebelieve; always they bumped her. At the side of
the bed their mother sat telling with a gigantic voice a story wherein
her husband's sister figured as the despicable person she was to the
eye of discernment, and this story was punctuated and shot through and
dislocuted by objurgations, threats, pleadings, admirations, alarms
and despairs addressed to the children separately and en masse, by
name, nickname, and hastily created epithet.

Mary halted in amazement in the doorway. She could not grasp all the
pandemonium at once, and while she stood Mrs. Cafferty saw her.

"Come on in, honey," said she. "Your ma's as right as a trivet. All
she wanted was a bit of good company and some children to play with.
Deed," she continued, "children are the best medicine for a woman that
I know of. They don't give you time to be sick, the creatures! Patrick
John, I'll give you a smack on the side of the head if you don't let
your little sister alone, and don't you, Norah, be vexing him or
you'll deserve all you get. Run inside, Julia Elizabeth, cut a slice
of bread for the twins, and put a bit of sugar on it, honey. Yes,
alanna, you can have a slice for yourself, too, you poor child you,
well you deserve it."

Mrs. Makebelieve was sitting up in the bed with two pillows propping
up her back. One of her long thin arms was stretched out to preserve
the twins from being bruised against the wall in their play. Plainly
they had become great friends with her, for every now and then they
swarmed over her, and a hugging match of extreme complexity ensued.
She looked almost her usual self, and all the animation that had been
so marked a feature of her personality had returned to her.

"Are you better, mother?" said Mary.

Mrs. Makebelieve took her daughter's head in her hands and kissed her
until the twins butted them apart clamoring for caresses.

"I am, honey," said she. "Those children done me good. I could have
got up at one o'clock, I felt so well, but Mrs. Cafferty thought I'd
better not."

"I did so," said Mrs. Cafferty. "Not a foot do you stir out of that
bed till your daughter comes home, ma'am, said I. For do you see,
child, many's the time you'd be thinking you were well and feeling as
fit as a fiddle, and nothing would be doing you but to be up and
gallivanting about, and then the next day you'd have a relapse, and
the next day you'd be twice as bad, and the day after that they'd be
measuring you for your coffin maybe. I knew a woman was taken like
that--up she got; I'm as well as ever I was, said she, and she ate a
feed of pig's cheek and cabbage and finished her washing, and they
buried her in a week. It's the quare thing, sickness. What I say is
when you're sick get into bed and stop there."

"It's easy saying that," said Mrs. Makebelieve.

"Sure, don't I know, you poor thing you," said Mrs. Cafferty, "but
you should stay in bed as long as you are able to anyhow."

"How did you get on with Mrs. O'Connor?" said Mrs. Makebelieve.

"That's the mistress, isn't it?" queried Mrs. Cafferty; "an ould
devil, I'll bet you."

Mrs. Makebelieve rapidly and lightly sketched Mrs. O'Connor's leading

"It's queer the people one has to work for, God knows it is," said
Mrs. Cafferty.

At this point a grave controversy on work might have arisen, but the
children, caring little for conversation, broke into so tumultuous
play that talk could not be proceeded with. Mary was enticed into a
game composed in part of pussy-four-corners and tip-an-tig, with a
general flavor of leap-frog working through. In five minutes her hair
and her stockings were both down, and the back of her skirt had crawled
three-quarters round to the front. The twins shouted and bumped on the
bed, upon which and on Mrs. Makebelieve they rubbed bread and butter
and sugar, while their mother roared an anecdote at Mrs. Makebelieve
in tones that ruled the din as a fog horn rules the waves.


Mary had lavished the entire of her first day's wages on delicate
foods wherewith to tempt her mother's languid appetite, and when the
morning dawned she arose silently, lit the fire, wet the tea and
spread her purchases out on the side of the bed. There was a slice of
brawn, two pork sausages, two eggs, three rashers of bacon, a bun, a
pennyworth of sweets and a pig's foot. These, with bread, and butter,
and tea, made a collection amid which an invalid might browse with
some satisfaction. Mary then awakened her, and sat by in a dream of
happiness watching her mother's eye roll slowly and unbelievingly from
item to item. Mrs. Makebelieve tipped each article with her first
finger and put its right name on it unerringly. Then she picked out an
important looking sweet that had four colors and shone like the sun,
and put it in her mouth.

"I never saw anything like it, you good child you," said she.

Mary rocked herself to and fro and laughed loudly for delight, and
then they ate a bit of everything, and were very happy.

Mrs. Makebelieve said that she felt altogether better that morning.
She had slept like a top all through the night, and, moreover, had a
dream wherein she saw her brother Patrick standing on the remotest sea
point of distant America, from whence he had shouted loudly across the
ocean that he was coming back to Ireland soon, that he had succeeded
very well indeed, and that he was not married. He had not changed in
the slightest degree, said Mrs. Makebelieve, and he looked as young
and as jolly as when he was at home with her father and herself in the
County Meath twenty-two years before. This mollifying dream and the
easy sleep which followed it had completely restored her health and
spirits. Mrs. Makebelieve further intimated that she intended to go to
work that day. It did not fit in with her ideas of propriety that her
child should turn into a charwoman, the more particularly as there was
a strong--an almost certain--possibility of an early betterment of her
own and her daughter's fortunes.

Dreams, said Mrs. Makebelieve, did not come for nothing. There was
more in dreams than was generally understood. Many and many were the
dreams which she herself had been visited by, and they had come true
so often that she could no longer disregard their promises,
admonishments or threats. Of course many people had dreams which were
of no consequence, and these could usually be traced to gluttony or a
flighty inconstant imagination. Drunken people, for instance, often
dreamed strange and terrible things, but, even while they were awake,
these people were liable to imaginary enemies whom their clouded eyes
and intellects magnified beyond any thoughtful proportions, and when
they were asleep their dreams would also be subject to this haze and
whirl of unreality and hallucination.

Mary said that sometimes she did not dream at all, and at other times
she dreamed very vividly, but usually could not remember what the
dream had been about when she awakened, and once she had dreamed that
some one gave her a shilling which she placed carefully under her
pillow, and this dream was so real that in the morning she put her
hand under the pillow to see if the shilling was there, but it was
not. The very next night she dreamed the same dream, and as she put
the phantom money under her pillow she said out loudly to herself, "I
am dreaming this, and I dreamt it last night also." Her mother said if
she had dreamt it for the third time some one would have given her a
shilling surely. To this Mary agreed, and admitted that she had tried
very hard to dream it on the third night, but somehow could not do it.

"When my brother comes home from America," said Mrs. Makebelieve,
"we'll go away from this part of the city at once. I suppose he'd want
a rather big house on the south side--Rathfarnham or Terenure way, or,
maybe, Donnybrook. Of course he'll ask me to mind the house for him
and keep the servants in order, and provide a different dinner every
day, and all that; while you could go out to the neighbors' places to
play lawn tennis or cricket, and have lunch. It will be a very great

"What kind of dinners would you have?" said Mary.

Mrs. Makebelieve's eyes glistened, and she leaned forward in the bed;
but just as she was about to reply the laboring man in the next room
slammed his door, and went thundering down the stairs. In an instant
Mrs. Makebelieve bounded from her bed; three wide twists put up her
hair, eight strange billow-like movements put on her clothes; as each
article of clothing reached a definite point on her person Mary
stabbed it swiftly with a pin--four ordinary pins in this place, two
safety pins in that: then Mrs. Makebelieve kissed her daughter sixteen
times and fled down the stairs and away to her work.


In a few minutes Mrs. Cafferty came into the room. She was, as every
woman is in the morning, primed with conversation about husbands, for
in the morning husbands are unwieldy, morose creatures without joy,
without lightness, lacking even the common, elemental interest in
their own children, and capable of detestably misinterpreting the
conversation of their wives. It is only by mixing amongst other men
that this malignant humor may be dispelled. To them the company of men
is like a great bath into which a husband will plunge wildly, renouncing
as he dives wives and children, all anchors and securities of hearth and
roof, and from which he again emerges singularly refreshed and capable
of being interested by a wife, a family, and a home until the next
morning. To many women this is a grievance amounting often to an
affront, and although they endeavor, even by cooking, to heal the
singular breach, they are utterly unable to do so, and perpetually seek
the counsel of each other on the subject. Mrs. Cafferty had merely asked
her husband would he hold the baby while she poured out his stirabout,
and he had incredibly threatened to pour the stirabout down the back of
her neck if she didn't leave him alone.

It was upon this morning madness she had desired to consult her
friend, and when she saw that Mrs. Makebelieve had gone away her
disappointment was quite evident. But this was only for a moment.
Almost all women are possessed of a fine social sense in relation to
other women. They are always on their best behavior towards one
another. Indeed, it often seems as if they feared and must by all
possible means placate each other by flattery, humor or a serious
tactfulness. There is very little freedom between them, because there
is no real freedom or acquaintance but between things polar. There is
nothing but a superficial resemblance between like and like, but
between like and unlike there is space wherein both curiosity and
spirit may go adventuring. Extremes must meet, it is their urgent
necessity; the reason for their distance, and the greater the distance
between them, the swifter will be their return and the warmer their
impact: they may shatter each other to fragments or they may fuse and
become indissoluble and new and wonderful, but there is no other
fertility. Between the sexes there is a really extraordinary freedom
of intercourse. They meet each other something more than half way. A
man and a woman may become quite intimate in a quarter of an hour.
Almost certainly they will endeavor to explain themselves to each
other before many minutes have elapsed; but a man and a man will not
do this, and even less so will a woman and a woman, for these are the
parallel lines which never meet. The acquaintanceship of the latter,
in particular, often begins and ends in an armed and calculating
neutrality. They preserve their distances and each others' suffrage by
the exercise of a grave social tact which never deserts them, and
which more than anything else has contributed to build the ceremonials
which are nearly one-half of our civilization. It is a common belief
amongst men that women cannot live together without quarreling, and
that they are unable to get work done by other women with any of the
good will which men display in the same occupations. If this is true,
the reason should not be looked for in any intersexual complications,
such as fear or an acrid rivalry, but only in the perpetually
recurring physical disturbances to which, as a sex, they are
subjected; and as the ability and willingness of a man to use his
fists in response to an affront has imposed sobriety and good humor
towards each other in almost all their relations, so women have placed
barriers of politeness and ceremonial between their fellow-women and
their own excoriated sensibilities.

Mrs. Cafferty, therefore, dissembled her disappointment, and with an
increased cordiality addressed herself towards Mary. Sitting down on
the bedside she discoursed on almost every subject upon which a woman
may discourse. It is considered that the conversation of women, while
incessant in its use, is rigorously bounded between the parlor and the
kitchen, or, to be more precise, between the attic and the scullery,
but these extremes are more inclusive than is imagined, for the attic
has an outlook on the stars while the scullery usually opens on the
kitchen garden or the dust heap--vistas equal to horizons. The
mysteries of death and birth occupy women far more than is the case
with men, to whom political and mercantile speculations are more
congenial. With immediate buying and selling, and all the absolute
forms of exchange and barter, women are deeply engaged, so that the
realities of trade are often more intelligent to them than to many
merchants. If men understood domestic economy half as well as women
do, then their political economy and their entire consequent
statecraft would not be the futile muddle which it is.

It was all very interesting to Mary, and, moreover, she had a great
desire for companionship at the moment. If she had been left alone it
might have become necessary to confront certain thoughts, memories,
pictures, from which she had a dim idea it would be wise to keep her
distance. Her work on the previous day, the girl she had met in the
house, the policeman--from all or any of these recollections she
swerved mentally. She steadily rejected all impressions that touched
upon these. The policeman floated vaguely on her consciousness not as
a desirable person, not even as a person but as a distance, as an
hour of her childhood, as a half-forgotten quaintness, a memory which
it would be better should never be revived. Indeed her faint thought
shadowed him as a person who was dead, and would never again be
visible to her anywhere. So, resolutely, she let him drop down into
her mind to some uncomfortable oubliette from whence he threatened
with feeble insistence to pop up at any moment like a strange question
or a sudden shame. She hid him in a rosy flush which a breath could
have made flame unbearably, and she hid from him behind the light
garrulity of Mrs. Cafferty, through which now and again, as through a
veil, she saw the spike of his helmet, a wiry bristling moustache, a
surge of great shoulders. On these ghostly indications she heaped a
tornado of words which swamped the wraith, but she knew he was waiting
to catch her alone, and would certainly catch her, and the knowledge
made her hate him.


Mrs. Cafferty suggested that she and Mary should go out together to
purchase that day's dinner, and by the time she had draped her
shoulders in a shawl, buried her head in a bonnet, cautioned all her
brood against going near the fireplace, the coal box and the slop
bucket, cut a slice of bread for each of them, and placed each of them
in charge of all the rest, Mary's more elaborate dressing was within
two stages of her hat.

"Wait until you have children, my dear," said Mrs. Cafferty, "you
won't be so pernickety then." She further told Mary that when she was
herself younger she had often spent an hour and a half doing up her
hair, and she had been so particular that the putting on of a blouse
or the pinning of a skirt to a belt had tormented her happily for two
hours. "But, bless you," she roared, "you get out of all that when you
get children. Wait till you have six of them to be dressed every
morning, and they with some of their boots lost and the rest of them
mixed up, and each of them wriggling like an eel on a pan until you
have to slap the devil out of them before their stocking can be got
on: the way they screw their toes up in the wrong places! and the way
they squeal that you're pinching them! and the way that they say
you've rubbed soap in their eyes!"--Mrs. Cafferty lifted her eyes and
her hands to the ceiling in a dumb remonstrance with Providence, and
dropped them again forlornly as one in whom Providence had never been
really interested--"You'll have all the dressing you want and a bit
over for luck," said she.

She complimented Mary on her hair, her complexion, the smallness of
her feet, the largeness of her eyes, the slenderness of her waist,
the width of her hat and of her shoe strings: so impartially and
inclusively did she compliment her that by the time they went out Mary
was rosy with appreciation and as self-confident as a young girl is
entitled to be.

It was a beautiful gray day with a massy sky which seemed as if it
never could move again or change, and, as often happens in Ireland in
cloudy weather, the air was so very clear that one could see to a
great distance. On such days everything stands out in sharp outline. A
street is no longer a congery of houses huddling shamefully together
and terrified lest any one should look at them and laugh. Each house
then recaptures its individuality. The very roadways are aware of
themselves and bear their horses, and cars, and trams in a competent
spirit, adorned with modesty as with a garland. It has a beauty beyond
sunshine, for sunshine is only youth and carelessness. The impress of
a thousand memories, the historic visage becomes apparent: the quiet
face which experience has ripened into knowledge and mellowed into the
wisdom of charity is seen then: the great social beauty shines from
the streets under this sky that broods like a thoughtful forehead.

While they walked Mrs. Cafferty planned, as a general might, her
campaign of shopping. Her shopping differed greatly from Mrs.
Makebelieve's, and the difference was probably caused by her necessity
to feed and clothe eight people as against Mrs. Makebelieve's two.
Mrs. Makebelieve went to the shop nearest her house, and there entered
into a stanch personal friendship with the proprietor. When she was
given anything of doubtful value or material she instantly returned
and handed it back, and the prices which were first quoted to her and
settled upon became to Mrs. Makebelieve an unalterable standard from
which no departure would be tolerated. Eggs might go up in price for
the remainder of the world, but not for her. A change of price threw
Mrs. Makebelieve into so wide-eyed, so galvanic, so power fully-verbal
and friendship-shattering an anger that her terms were accepted and
registered as Median exactitudes. Mrs. Cafferty, on the other hand,
knew shopkeepers as personal enemies and as foes to the human race,
who were bent on despoiling the poor, and against whom a remorseless
warfare should be conducted by all decent people. Her knowledge of
material, of quality, of degrees of freshness, of local and distant
prices was profound. In Clanbrassil Street she would quote the prices
of Moore Street with shattering effect, and if the shopkeeper declined
to revise his tariff her good-humored voice toned so huge a
disapproval that other intending purchasers left the shop impressed by
the unmasking of a swindler. Her method was abrupt. She seized an
article, placed it on the counter and uttered these words, "Sixpence
and not a penny more; I can get it in Moore Street for five pence half
penny." She knew all the shops having a cheap line in some special
article, and, therefore, her shopping was of a very extended
description, not that she went from point to point, for she
continually departed from the line of battle with the remark "Let's
try what they have here," and when inside the shop her large eye took
in at a glance a thousand details of stock and price which were never
afterwards forgotten.

Mrs. Cafferty's daughter, Norah, was going to celebrate her first
Communion in a few days. This is a very important ceremony for a young
girl and for her mother. A white muslin dress and a blue sash, a white
muslin hat with blue ribbons, tan shoes, and stockings as germane to
the color of tan as may be--these all have to be provided. It is a
time of grave concern for everybody intimately connected with the
event. Every girl in the world has performed this ceremony: they have
all been clad in these garments and shoes, and for a day or so all
women, of whatever age, are in love with the little girl making her
first Communion. Perhaps more than anything else it swings the passing
stranger back to the time when she was not a woman but a child with
present gayety and curiosity, and a future all expectation and
adventure. Therefore, the suitable appareling of one's daughter is a
public duty, and every mother endeavors to do the thing that is right,
and live, if only for one day, up to the admiration of her

It was a trial, but an enjoyable one, to Mrs. Cafferty and Mary, this
matching of tan stockings with tan shoes. The shoes were bought, and
then an almost impossible quest began to find stockings which would
exactly go with them. Thousands of boxes were opened, ransacked and
waved aside without the absolute color being discovered. From shop to
shop and from street to street they went, and the quest led them
through Grafton Street en route to a shop where months before Mrs.
Cafferty had seen stockings of a color so nearly approximating to tan
that they almost might be suitable.

As they went past the College and entered the winding street Mary's
heart began to beat. She did not see any of the traffic flowing up and
down, or the jostling, busy foot passengers, nor did she hear the
eager lectures of her companion. Her eyes were straining up the street
towards the crossing. She dared not turn back or give any explanation
to Mrs. Cafferty, and in a few seconds she saw him, gigantic, calm,
adequate, the monarch of his world. His back was turned to her, and
the great sweep of his shoulders, his solid legs, his red neck and
close-cropped, wiry hair were visible to her strangely. She had a
peculiar feeling of acquaintedness and of aloofness, intimate
knowledge and a separation of sharp finality caused her to stare at
him with so intent a curiosity that Mrs. Cafferty noticed it.

"That's a fine man," said she, "he won't have to go about looking for

As she spoke they passed by the policeman, and Mary knew that when her
eyes left him his gaze almost automatically fell upon her. She was
glad that he could not see her face. She was glad that Mrs. Cafferty
was beside her: had she been alone she would have been tempted to walk
away very quickly, almost to run, but her companion gave her courage
and self-possession, so that she walked gallantly. But her mind was a
fever. She could feel his eyes raking her from head to foot, she could
see his great hand going up to tap his crinkly moustache. These things
she could see in her terrified mind, but she could not think, she
could only give thanks to God because she had her best clothes on.


Mrs. Makebelieve was planning to get back such of her furniture and
effects as had been pawned during her illness. Some of these things
she had carried away from her father's house many years before when
she got married. They had been amongst the earliest objects on which
her eyes had rested when she was born, and around them her whole life
of memories revolved. A chair in which her father had sat and on the
edge whereof her husband had timidly balanced himself when he came
courting her, and into which her daughter had been tied when she was a
baby. A strip of carpet and some knives and forks had formed portion
of her wedding presents. She loved these things, and had determined
that if work could retrieve them they should not be lost forever.
Therefore, she had to suffer people like Mrs. O'Connor, not gladly,
but with the resignation due to the hests of Providence which one must
obey but may legitimately criticise. Mrs. Makebelieve said definitely
that she detested the woman. She was a cold-eyed person whose only
ability was to order about other people who were much better than she
was. It distressed Mrs. Makebelieve to have to work for such a person,
to be subject to her commands and liable to her reproofs or advice;
these were things which seemed to her to be out of all due proportion.
She did not wish the woman any harm, but some day or other she would
undoubtedly have to put her in her proper place. It was a day to which
she looked forward. Any one who had a sufficient income could have a
house and could employ and pay for outside help without any particular
reason for being proud, and many people, having such an income, would
certainly have a better appointed house and would be more generous
and civil to those who came to work for them. Everybody, of course,
could not have a policeman for a nephew, and there were a great many
people who would rather not have anything to do with a policeman at
all. Overbearing rough creatures to whom everybody is a thief! If Mrs.
Makebelieve had such a nephew she would certainly have wrecked his
pride--the great beast! Here Mrs. Makebelieve grew very angry: her
black eyes blazed, her great nose grew thin and white and her hands
went leaping in fury. "You're not in Court now, you jackanapes
you,--said I, with his whiskers and his baton, and his feet that were
bigger than anything in the world except his ignorant self-conceit.
'Have you a daughter, mam, said he, what's her age, mam, said he, is
she a good girl, mam, said he?'--but she had settled him,--and that
woman was prouder of him than a king would be of his crown! never
mind," said Mrs. Makebelieve, and she darted fiercely up and down the
room, tearing pieces off the atmosphere and throwing them behind her.

In a few minutes, however, she sat down on the floor and drew her
daughter's head to her breast, and then, staring into the scrap of
fire, she counseled Mary wisely on many affairs of life and the
conduct of a girl under all kinds of circumstances--to be adequate in
spirit if not in physique: that was her theme. Never be a servant in
your heart, said she. To work is nothing; the king on his throne, the
priest kneeling before the Holy Altar, all people in all places had to
work, but no person at all need be a servant. One worked and was paid,
and went away keeping the integrity of one's soul unspotted and
serene. If an employer was wise or good or kind Mrs. Makebelieve was
prepared to accord such a person instant and humble reverence. She
would work for such a one until the nails dropped off her fingers and
her feet crumpled up under her body; but a policeman or a rich
person, or a person who ordered one about...! until she died and was
buried in the depths of the world, she would never give in to such a
person or admit anything but their thievishness and ill-breeding. Bad
manners to the like of them, said she, and might have sailed
boisterously away upon an ocean of curses but that Mary turned her
face closer to her breast and began to speak.

For suddenly there had come to Mary a vision of peace: like a green
island in the sea it was, like a white cloud on a broiling day; the
sheltered life where all mundane preoccupations were far away, where
ambition and hope and struggle were incredibly distant foolishness.
Lowly and peaceful and unjaded was that life: she could see the nuns
pacing quietly in their enclosed gardens, fingering their beads as
they went to and fro and praying noiselessly for the sins of the
world, or walking with solemn happiness to the Chapel to praise God
in their own small companies, or going with hidden feet through the
great City to nurse the sick and to comfort those who had no other
comforter than God--to pray in a quiet place, and not to be afraid any
more or doubtful or despised...! These things she saw and her heart
leaped to them, and of these things she spoke to her mother, who
listened with a tender smile and stroked her hair and hands. But her
mother did not approve of these things. She spoke of nuns with
reverence and affection. Many a gentle, sweet woman had she known of
that sisterhood, many a one before whom she could have abased herself
with tears and love, but such a life of shelter and restraint could
never have been hers, nor did she believe it could be Mary's. For her
a woman's business was life, the turmoil and strife of it was good to
be in, it was a cleansing and a bracing. God did not need any
assistance, but man did, bitterly he wanted it, and the giving of
such assistance was the proper business of a woman. Everywhere there
was a man to be helped, and the quest of a woman was to find the man
who most needed her aid, and having found him to cleave to him
forever. In most of the trouble of life she divined men and women not
knowing or not doing their duty, which was to love one another and to
be neighborly and obliging to their fellows. A partner, a home and
children--through the loyal co-operation of these she saw happiness
and, dimly, a design of so vast an architecture as scarcely to be
discussed. The bad and good of humanity moved her to an equal ecstasy
of displeasure and approbation, but her God was Freedom and her
religion Love. Freedom! even the last rags of it that remain to a
regimented world! That was a passion with her. She must order her
personal life without any ghostly or bodily supervision. She would
oppose an encroachment on that with her nails and her teeth; and this
last fringe of freedom was what nuns had sacrificed and all servants
and other people had bartered away. One must work, but one must never
be a slave--these laws seemed to her equally imperative; the structure
of the world swung upon them, and whoever violated these laws was a
traitor to both God and man.

But Mary did not say anything. Her mother's arms were around her, and
suddenly she commenced to cry upon a bosom that was not strange. There
was surely healing in that breast of love, a rampart of tenderness
against the world, a door which would never be closed against her or
opened to her enemies.


In a little city like Dublin one meets every person whom one knows
within a few days. Around each bend in the road there is a friend, an
enemy, or a bore striding towards you, so that, with a piety which is
almost religious, one says "touch wood" before turning any corner. It
was not long, therefore, until Mary again met the big policeman. He
came up behind her and walked by her side, chatting with a pleasant
ease, in which, however, her curious mind could discover some obscure
distinctions. On looking backwards it seemed to Mary that he had
always come from behind her, and the retrospect dulled his glory to
the diminishing point. For indeed his approach was too consistently
policemanlike, it was too crafty; his advent hinted at a gross
espionage, at a mind which was no longer a man's but a detective's
who tracked everybody by instinct, and arrested his friends instead of
saluting them.

As they walked along Mary was in a fever of discomfort. She wished
dumbly that the man would go away, but for the wealth of the world she
could not have brought herself to hurt the feelings of so big a man.
To endanger the very natural dignity of a big man was a thing which no
woman could do without a pang; the shame of it made her feel hot: he
might have blushed or stammered, and the memory of that would sting her
miserably for weeks as though she had insulted an elephant or a baby.

She could not get away from him. She had neither the courage nor the
experience which enables a woman to dismiss a man without wounding
him, and so, perforce, she continued walking by his side while he
treated her to an intelligent dissertation on current political events
and the topography of the city of Dublin.

But, undoubtedly, there was a change in the policeman, and it was not
difficult to account for. He was more easy and familiar in his speech:
while formerly he had bowed as from the peaks of manly intellect to
the pleasant valleys of girlish incompetence he now condescended from
the loftiness of a policeman and a person of quality to the quaint
gutters of social inferiority. To many people mental inferiority in a
companion has a charm, for it induces in one's proper person a feeling
of philosophic detachment, a fine effect of personal individuality and
superiority which is both bracing and uplifting--there is not any
particular harm in this: progress can be, and is, accelerated by the
hypocrisies and snobbishness, all the minor, unpleasant adjuncts of
mediocrity. Snobbishness is a puling infant, but it may grow to a
deeply whiskered ambition, and most virtues are, on examination, the
amalgam of many vices. But while intellectual poverty may be forgiven
and loved, social inequality can only be utilized. Our fellows,
however addled, are our friends, our inferiors are our prey, and since
the policeman had discovered Mary publicly washing out an alien hall
his respect for her had withered and dropped to death almost in an
instant; whence it appears that there is really only one grave and
debasing vice in the world, and that is poverty.

In many little ways the distinction and the difference was apparent to
Mary. The dignity of a gentleman and a man of the world was partly
shorn away: the gentleman portion, which comprised kindness and
reticence, had vanished, the man of the world remained, typified by a
familiarity which assumed that this and that, understood but not to be
mentioned, shall be taken for granted: a spurious equalization perched
jauntily but insecurely on a non-committal, and that base flattery
which is the only coin wherewith a thief can balance his depredations.
For as they went pacing down a lonely road towards the Dodder the
policeman diversified his entertaining lore by a succession of
compliments which ravaged the heavens and the earth and the deep sea
for a fitting symbology. Mary's eyes and the gay heavens were placed
in juxtaposition and the heavens were censured, the vegetable, animal
and mineral worlds were discomfited, the deep sea sustained a reproof
and the by-products of nature and of art drooped into a nothingness
too vast even for laughter. Mary had not the slightest objection to
hearing that all the other women in the world seemed cripples and
gargoyles when viewed against her own transcendent splendor, and she
was prepared to love the person who said this innocently and happily.
She would have agreed to be an angel or a queen to a man demanding
potentates and powers in his sweetheart, and would joyfully have
equalized matters by discovering the buried god in her lover and
believing in it as sincerely as he permitted.--But this man was not
saying the truth. She could see him making the things up as he talked.
There was eagerness in him, but no spontaneity. It was not even
eagerness, it was greediness: he wanted to eat her up and go away with
her bones sticking out of his mouth as the horns of a deer protrude
from the jaws of an anaconda, veritable evidence to it and his fellows
of a victory and an orgy to command respect and envy. But he was
familiar, he was complacent and--amazedly she discovered it--he was
big. Her vocabulary could not furnish her with the qualifying word,
or, rather, epithet for his bigness. Horrible was suggested and
retained, but her instinct clamored that there was a fat, oozy word
somewhere which would have brought comfort to her brains and her hands
and feet. He did not keep his arms quiet, but tapped his remarks into
her blouse and her shoulder. Each time his hands touched her they
remained a trifle longer. They seemed to be great red spiders, they
would grip her all round and squeeze her clammily while his face
spiked her to death with its moustache.... And he smiled also, he
giggled and cut capers; his language now was a perpetual witticism at
which he laughed in jerks, and at which she laughed tightly like an
obedient, quick echo: and then, suddenly, without a word, in a dazing
flash, his arms were about her. There was nobody in sight at all, and
he was holding her like a great spider, and his bristly moustache
darted forward to spike her to death, and then, somehow, she was free,
away from him, scudding down the road lightly and fearfully and very
swiftly. "Wait, wait," he called, "wait," but she did not wait.


Mrs. Cafferty came in that evening for a chat with Mrs. Makebelieve.
There were traces of worry on the lady's face, and she hushed the
children who trooped in her wake with less of good humor than they
were accustomed to. Instead of threatening to smack them on the head
as was usual she did smack them, and she walked surrounded by
lamentations as by a sea.

Things were not going at all well with her. There was a slackness in
her husband's trade so that for days together he was idle, and
although the big woman amended her expenditure in every direction she
could not by any means adjust eight robust appetites to a shrunken
income. She explained her position to Mrs. Makebelieve:--Children
would not, they could not, consent to go on shorter rations than they
had been accustomed to, and it seemed to her that daily, almost
hourly, their appetites grew larger and more terrible. She showed her
right hand whereon the mere usage of a bread-knife had scored a ridge
which was now a permanent disfigurement.

"God bless me," she shouted angrily, "what right have I to ask the
creatures to go hungry? Am I to beat them when they cry? It's not
their fault that they want food, and it's not my poor man's fault that
they haven't any. He's ready to work at his trade if anybody wants him
to do so, and if he can't get work and if the children are hungry
whose fault is it?"

Mrs. Cafferty held that there was something wrong somewhere, but
whether the blame was to be allocated to the weather, the employer,
the government or the Deity, she did not know, nor did Mrs.
Makebelieve know; but they were agreed that there was an error
somewhere, a lack of adjustment with which they had nothing to do, but
the effects whereof were grievously visible in their privations.
Meantime it had become necessary that Mrs. Cafferty should adjust
herself to a changing environment. A rise or fall in wages is
automatically followed by a similar enlargement or shrinkage of one's
necessities, and the consequent difference is registered at all points
of one's life-contact. The physical and mental activities of a
well-to-do person can reach out to a horizon, while those of very poor
people are limited to their immediate, stagnant atmosphere, and so the
lives of a vast portion of society are liable to a ceaseless change, a
flux swinging from good to bad forever, an expansion and constriction
against which they have no safeguards and not even any warning. In
free nature this problem is paralleled by the shrinking and expansion
of the seasons; the summer with its wealth of food, the winter
following after with its famine, but many wild creatures are able to
make a thrifty provision against the bad time which they know comes as
certainly and periodically as the good time. Bees and squirrels and
many others fill their barns with the plentiful overplus of the summer
fields, birds can migrate and find sunshine and sustenance elsewhere,
and others again can store during their good season a life energy by
means whereof they may sleep healthily through their hard times. These
organizations can be adjusted to their environments because the
changes of the latter are known and can be more or less accurately
predicted from any point. But the human worker has no such regularity.
His food period does not ebb and recur with the seasons. There is no
periodicity in their changes and, therefore, no possibility for
defensive or protective action. His physical structure uses and
excretes energy so rapidly that he cannot store it up and go to sleep
on his savings, and his harvests are usually so lean and disconnected
that the exercise of thrift is equally an impossibility and a mockery.
The life, therefore, of such a person is composed of a constant series
of adjustments and readjustments, and the stern ability wherewith
these changes are met and combated are more admirably ingenious than
the much-praised virtues of ants and bees to which they are constantly
directed as to exemplars.

Mrs. Cafferty had now less money than she had been used to, but she
had still the same rent to pay, the same number of children to feed,
and the same personal dignity to support as in her better days, and
her problem was to make up, by some means to which she was a stranger,
the money which had drifted beyond the reach of her husband. The
methods by which she could do this were very much restricted. Children
require an attention which occupies the entire of a mother's time,
and, consequently, she was prevented from seeking abroad any
mitigation of her hardships. The occupations which might be engaged in
at home were closed to her by mere overwhelming competition. The
number of women who are prepared to make ten million shirts for a
penny are already far in excess of the demand, and so, except by a
severe under-cutting such as a contract to make twenty million shirts
for a halfpenny, work of this description is very difficult to obtain.

Under these circumstances nothing remained for Mrs. Cafferty but to
take in a lodger. This is a form of co-operation much practiced among
the poorer people. The margin of direct profit accruing from such a
venture is very small, but this is compensated for by the extra
spending power achieved. A number of people pooling their money in
this way can buy to greater advantage and in a cheaper market than is
possible to the solitary purchaser, and a moderate toll for wear and
tear and usage, or, as it is usually put, for rent and attendance,
gives the small personal profit at which such services are reckoned.

Through the good offices of a neighboring shopkeeper Mrs. Cafferty
had secured a lodger, and, with the courage which is never separate
from despair, she had rented a small room beside her own. This room,
by an amazing economy of construction, contained a fireplace and a
window: it was about one square inch in diameter, and was undoubtedly
a fine room. The lodger was to enter into possession on the following
day, and Mrs. Cafferty said he was a very nice young man indeed and
did not drink.


Mrs. Cafferty's lodger duly arrived. He was young and as thin as a
lath, and he moved with fury. He was seldom in the place at all: he
fled into the house for his food, and, having eaten it, he fled away
from the house again, and did not reappear until it was time to go to
bed. What he did with himself in the interval Mrs. Cafferty did not
know, but she was prepared to wager her soul, the value of which she
believed was high, on the fact that he was a good young man who never
gave the slightest trouble, saving that his bedclothes were always
lying on the floor in the morning, that there was candle grease on one
corner of his pillow, and that he cleaned his boots on a chair. But
these were things which one expected a young man to do, and the
omission of them might have caused one to look curiously at the
creature and to doubt his masculinity.

Mrs. Makebelieve replied that habits of order and neatness were rarely
to be found in young people of either sex; more especially were these
absent in boys who are released in early youth by their mothers from
all purely domestic employments. A great many people believed, and she
believed herself, that it was not desirable a man or boy should
conform too rigidly to household rules. She had observed that the
comfort of a home was lost to many men if they were expected to take
their boots off when they came into the house or to hang their hats up
in a special place. The women of a household, being so constantly
indoors, find it easy and businesslike to obey the small rules which
comprise household legislation, but as the entire policy of a house
was to make it habitable and comfortable for its men folk all domestic
ordinances might be strained to the uttermost until the compromise
was found to mollify even exceptional idiosyncrasies. A man, she held,
bowed to quite sufficient discipline during his working hours, and his
home should be a place free from every vexatious restraint and wherein
he might enjoy as wide a liberty as was good for him.

These ideas were applauded by Mrs. Cafferty, and she supplemented them
by a recital of how she managed her own husband, and of the ridiculous
ease whereby any man may be governed; for she had observed that men
were very susceptible to control if only the control was not too
apparent. If a man did a thing twice the doing of that thing became a
habit and a passion, any interference with which provoked him to an
unreasoning bull-like wrath wherein both wives and crockery were
equally shattered; and, therefore, a woman had only to observe the
personal habits of her beloved and fashion her restrictions according
to that standard. This meant that men made the laws and women
administered them--a wise allocation of prerogatives, for she
conceived that the executive female function was every whit as
important as the creative faculty which brought these laws into being.
She was quite prepared to leave the creative powers in male hands if
they would equally abstain from interference with the subsequent
working details, for she was of opinion that in the pursuit of comfort
(not entirely to their credit was it said) men were far more anxiously
concerned than were women, and they flew to their bourne with an
instinct for short cuts wherewith women were totally unacquainted.

But in the young man who had come to lodge with her Mrs. Cafferty
discerned a being in whom virtue had concentrated to a degree that
almost amounted to a congestion. He had instantly played with the
children on their being presented to him: this was the sign of a good
nature. Before he was acquainted with her ten minutes he had made
four jokes: this was the sign of a pleasant nature; and he sang loudly
and unceasingly when he awoke in the morning, which was the unfailing
index to a happy nature. Moreover, he ate the meals provided for him
without any of that particular, tedious examination which is so
insulting, and had complimented Mrs. Cafferty on an ability to put a
taste on food which she was pleased to obtain recognition of.

Both Mary and her mother remarked on these details with an admiration
which was as much as either politeness or friendship could expect.
Mrs. Makebelieve's solitary method of life had removed her so
distantly from youth that information about a young man was almost
tonic to her. She had never wished for a second husband, but had often
fancied that a son would have been a wonderful joy to her. She
considered that a house which had no young man growing up in it was
not a house at all, and she believed that a boy would love his
mother, if not more than a daughter could, at least with a difference
which would be strangely sweet--a rash, impulsive, unquiet love: a
love which would continually prove her love to the breaking point; a
love that demanded, and demanded with careless assurance, that
accepted her goodness as unquestioningly as she accepted the fertility
of the earth, and used her knowing blindly and flatteringly how
inexhaustively rich her depths were.... She could have wept for this:
it was priceless beyond kingdoms: the smile on a boy's face lifted her
to an exaltation. Her girl was inexpressibly sweet, surely an island
in her wide heart, but a little boy ... her breasts could have filled
with milk for him, him she could have nourished in the rocks and in
desert places: he would have been life to her and adventure, a barrier
against old age, an incantation against sorrow, a fragrance and a
grief and a defiance....

It was quite plain that Mrs. Cafferty was satisfied with this addition
to her household, but the profit which she had expected to accrue from
his presence was not the liberal one she had in mind when making the
preliminary arrangements. For it appeared that the young man had an
appetite of which Mrs. Cafferty spoke with the respect proper to
something colossal and awesome. A half-loaf did not more than break
the back of a hunger which could wriggle disastrously over another
half-loaf: so that, instead of being relieved by his advent, she was
confronted by a more immediate and desolating bankruptcy than that
from which she had attempted to escape. Exactly how to deal with this
situation she did not know, and it was really in order to discuss her
peculiar case that she had visited Mrs. Makebelieve. She could, of
course, have approached the young man and demanded from him an
increase of money that would still be equitable to both parties, but
she confessed a repugnance to this course. She did not like to
upbraid or trouble any one on account of an appetite which was so
noteworthy. She disliked, in any event, to raise a question about
food: her instinct for hospitality was outraged at the thought, and as
she was herself the victim, or the owner, of an appetite which had
often placed a strain on her revenues, a fellow-feeling operated still
further in mitigation of his disqualification.

Mrs. Makebelieve's advice was that she should stifle the first fierce
and indiscriminate cravings of the young man's hunger by a liberal
allowance of stirabout, which was a cheap, wholesome and very
satisfying food, and in that way his destruction of more costly
victuals would be kept within reasonable limits. Appetite, she held,
was largely a matter of youth, and as a boy who was scarcely done
growing had no way of modifying his passion for nourishment, it would
be a lapse from decency to insult him on so legitimate a failing.

Mrs. Cafferty thought that this might be done, and thanked her friend
for the counsel; but Mary, listening to these political matters,
conceived Mrs. Cafferty as a person who had no longer any claim to
honor, and she pitied the young man whose appetite was thus publicly
canvassed, and who might at any moment be turned out of house and home
on account of a hunger against which he had no safeguard and no remedy.


It was not long until Mary and Mrs. Cafferty's lodger met. As he came
in by the hall door one day Mary was carrying upstairs a large water
bucket, the portage of which two or three times a day is so heavy a
strain on the dweller in tenements. The youth instantly seized the
bucket and, despite her protestations and appeals, he carried it
upstairs. He walked a few steps in advance of Mary, whistling
cheerfully as he went, so she was able to get a good view of him. He
was so thin that he nearly made her laugh, but he carried the bucket,
the weight of which she had often bowed under, with an ease
astonishing in so slight a man, and there was a spring in his walk
which was pleasant to see. He laid the bucket down outside her room,
and requested her urgently to knock at his door whenever she required
more water fetched, because he would be only too delighted to do it
for her, and it was not the slightest trouble in the world. While he
spoke he was stealing glances at her face and Mary was stealing
glances at his face, and when they caught one another doing this at
the same moment they both looked hurriedly away, and the young man
departed to his own place.

But Mary was very angry with this young man. She had gone downstairs
in her house attire, which was not resplendent, and she objected to
being discovered by any youth in raiment not suitable to such an
occasion. She could not visualize herself speaking to a man unless she
was adorned as for a festivity. The gentlemen and ladies of whom her
mother sometimes spoke, and of whom she had often dreamt, were never
mean in their habiliments. The gentlemen frequently had green silken
jackets with a foam of lace at the wrists and a cascade of the same
rich material brawling upon their breasts, and the ladies were
attired in a magnificent scarcity of clothing, the fundamental
principle whereof, although she was quite assured of its
righteousness, she did not yet understand.

Indeed, at this period Mary's interest in dress far transcended any
interest she had ever known before. She knew intimately the window
contents of every costumier's shop in Grafton and Wicklow and Dawson
streets, and could follow with intelligent amazement the apparently
trifling, but exceedingly important, differences of line or seam or
flounce which ranked one garment as a creation and its neighbor as a
dress. She and her mother often discussed the gowns wherein the
native dignity of their souls might be adequately caparisoned. Mrs.
Makebelieve, with a humility which had still a trace of anger,
admitted that the period when she could have been expressed in color
had expired, and she decided that a black silk dress, with a heavy
gold chain falling along the bosom, was as much as her soul was now
entitled to. She had an impatience, amounting to contempt, for those
florid flamboyant souls whose outer physical integument so grievously
misrepresented them. She thought that after a certain time one should
dress the body and not the soul, and, discovering an inseparability
between the two, she held that the mean shrine must hold a very
trifling deity and that an ill-made or time-worn body should never
dress gloriously under pain of an accusation of hypocrisy or

But for Mary she planned garments with a freedom and bravery which
astonished while it delighted her daughter. She combined twenty styles
into one style of terrifying originality. She conceived dresses of a
complexity beyond the labor of any but a divinely inspired needle, and
others again whose simplicity was almost too tenuous for human speech.
She discussed robes whose trailing and voluminous richness could with
difficulty be supported by ten strong attendants, and she had heard of
a dress the fabric whereof was of such gossamer and ethereal
insubstancy that it might be packed into a walnut more conveniently
than an ordinary dress could be impressed into a portmanteau. Mary's
exclamations of delight and longing ranged from every possible dress
to every impossible one, and then Mrs. Makebelieve reviewed all the
dresses she had worn from the age of three years to the present day,
including wedding and mourning dresses, those which were worn at
picnics and dances and for traveling, with an occasional divergence
which comprehended the clothing of her friends and her enemies during
the like period. She explained the basic principles of dress to her
daughter, showing that in this art, as in all else, order cannot be
dispensed with. There were things a tall person might wear, but which
a short person might not, and the draperies which adorned a portly
lady were but pitiable weeds when trailed by her attenuated sister.
The effect of long thin lines in a fabric will make a short woman
appear tall, while round, thick lines can reduce the altitude of
people whose height is a trouble to be combated. She illustrated the
usage of large and small checks and plaids and all the mazy
interweaving of other cloths, and she elucidated the mystery of color,
tone, half-tone, light and shade so interestingly that Mary could
scarcely hear enough of her lore. She was acquainted with the colors
which a dark person may wear and those which are suitable to a fair
person, and the shades proper to be used by the wide class ranging
between these extremes she knew also, with a special provision for
red-haired and sandy folk and those who have no complexion at all.
Certain laws which she formulated were cherished by her daughter as
oracular utterances--that one should match one's eyes in the house
and one's hair in the street, was one; that one's hat and gloves and
shoes were of vastly more importance than all the rest of one's
clothing, was another; that one's hair and stockings should tone as
nearly as possible, was a third. Following these rules, she assured
her daughter, a woman could never be other than well dressed, and all
of these things Mary learned by heart and asked her mother to tell her
more, which her mother was quite able and willing to do.


When the sexual instinct is aroused men and dogs and frogs and
beetles, and such other creatures as are inside or outside of this
catalogue, are very tenacious in the pursuit of their ambition. We can
seldom get away from that which attracts or repels us. Love and hate
are equally magnetic and compelling, and each, being supernormal,
drags us willingly or woefully in their wake, until at last our blind
persistency is either routed or appeased and we advance our lauds or
gnash our teeth as the occasion bids us. There is no tragedy more
woeful than the victory of hate, nor any attainment so hopelessly
barren as the sterility of that achievement; for hate is finality, and
finality is the greatest evil which can happen in a world of movement.
Love is an inaugurator displaying his banners on captured peaks and
pressing forever to a new and more gracious enterprise, but the
victories of hate are gained in a ditch from which there is no horizon
visible and whence there does not go even one limping courier.

After Mary fled from the embrace of the great policeman he came to
think more closely of her than he had been used; but her image was
throned now in anger: she came to him like a dull brightness wherefrom
desolate thunder might roll at an instant. Indeed, she began to obsess
him so that not even the ministrations of his aunt nor the obeisances
of that pleasant girl, the name of whose boots was Fairybell, could
give him any comfort or wean him from a contemplation which sprawled
gloomily between him and his duties to the traffic. If he had not
discovered the lowliness of her quality his course might have been
simple and straightforward: the issue, in such an event, would have
narrowed to every man's poser--whether he should marry this girl or
that girl? but the arithmetic whereby such matters are elucidated
would at the last have eased his perplexity, and the path indicated
could have been followed with the fullest freedom on his part and
without any disaster to his self-love. If, whichever way his
inclination wavered, there was any pang of regret (and there was bound
to be) such a feeling would be ultimately waived by his reason or
retained as a memorial which had a gratifying savor. But the knowledge
of Mary's social inferiority complicated matters, for, although this
automatically put her out of the question as his wife, her subsequent
ill-treatment of himself had injected a virus to his blood which was
one-half a passion for her body and one-half a frenzy for vengeance.
He could have let her go easily enough if she had not first let him
go; for he read dismissal in her action and resented it as a trespass
on his own just prerogative.--He had but to stretch out his hand and
she would have dropped to it as tamely as a kitten, whereas now she
eluded his hand, would, indeed, have nothing to do with it; and this
could not be forgiven. He would gladly have beaten her into
submission, for what right has a slip of a girl to withstand the
advances of a man and a policeman? That is a crooked spirit demanding
to be straightened with a truncheon: but as we cannot decently, or
even peaceably, beat a girl until she is married to us he had to
relinquish that dear idea. He would have dismissed her from his mind
with the contempt she deserved, but, alas! he could not: she clung
there like a burr not to be dislodged saving by possession or a
beating--two shuddering alternatives--for she had become detestably
dear to him. His senses and his self-esteem conspired to heave her to
a pedestal where his eye strained upwards in bewilderment--that she
who was below him could be above him! This was astounding: she must be
pulled from her eminence and stamped back to her native depths by his
own indignant hoofs; thence she might be gloriously lifted again with
a calm, benignant, masculine hand shedding pardons and favors, and
perhaps a mollifying unguent for her bruises. Bruises! a knee, an
elbow--they were nothing; little damages which to kiss was to make
well again. Will not women cherish a bruise that it may be medicined
by male kisses? Nature and precedent have both sworn to it.... But she
was out of reach; his hand, high-flung as it might be, could not get
to her. He went furiously to the Phoenix Park, to St. Stephen's
Green, to outlying leafy spots and sheltered lanes, but she was in
none of these places. He even prowled about the neighborhood of her
home and could not meet her. Once he had seen Mary as she came along
the road, and he drew back into a doorway. A young man was marching by
her side, a young man who gabbled without ceasing and to whom Mary
chattered again with an equal volubility. As they passed by Mary
caught sight of him, and her face went flaming. She caught her
companion's arm, and they hurried down the road at a great pace....
She had never chattered to him. Always he had done the talking, and
she had been an obedient grateful listener. Nor did he quarrel with
her silence, but her reserve shocked him--it was a pretense, worse, a
lie, a masked and hooded falsehood. She had surrendered to him
willingly, and yet drew about her a protective armor of reserve
wherein she skulked immune to the arms which were lawfully victorious.
Is there, then, no loot for a conqueror? We demand the keys of the
City Walls and unrestricted entry, or our torches shall blaze again.
This chattering Mary was a girl whom he had never caught sight of at
all. She had been hiding from him even in his presence. In every
aspect she was an anger. But she could talk to the fellow with her
... a skinny whipper-snapper, whom the breath of a man could shred
into remote, eyeless vacuity. Was this man another insult? Did she not
even wait to bury her dead? Pah! she was not value for his thought. A
girl so lightly facile might be blown from here to there and she would
scarcely notice the difference. Here and there were the same places to
her, and him and him were the same person. A girl of that type comes
to a bad end: he had seen it often, the type and the end, and never
separate. Can one not prophesy from facts? He saw a slut in a slum, a
drab hovering by a dark entry, and the vision cheered him mightily for
one glowing minute and left him unoccupied for the next, into which
she thronged with the flutter of wings and the sound of a great

His aunt tracked his brows back to the responsible duties of his
employment and commiserated with him, and made a lamentation about
matters with which he never had been occupied, so that the last tag
of his good manners departed from him, and he damned her unswervingly
into consternation. That other pleasant girl, whose sweetness he had
not so much tasted as sampled, had taken to brooding in his presence:
she sometimes drooped an eye upon him like a question.... Let her look
out or maybe he'd blaze into her teeth: howl menace down her throat
until she swooned. Some one should yield to him a visible and tangible
agony to balance his. Does law probe no deeper than the pillage of a
watch? Can one filch our self-respect and escape free? Shall not our
souls also sue for damages against its aggressor? Some person rich
enough must pay for his lacerations or there was less justice in
heaven than in the Police Courts; and it might be that girl's lot to
expiate the sins of Mary. It would be a pleasure, if a sour one, to
make somebody wriggle as he had, and somebody should wriggle; of that
he was blackly determined.


Indeed, Mrs. Cafferty's lodger and Mary had become quite intimate, and
it was not through the machinations of either that this had happened.
Ever since Mrs. Makebelieve had heard of that young man's appetite and
the miseries through which he had to follow it she had been deeply
concerned on his behalf. She declined to believe that the boy ever got
sufficient to eat, and she enlarged to her daughter on the seriousness
of this privation to a young man. Disabilities, such as a young girl
could not comprehend, followed in the train of insufficient
nourishment. Mrs. Cafferty was her friend, and was, moreover, a good
decent woman against whom the tongue of rumor might wag in vain; but
Mrs. Cafferty was the mother of six children and her natural
kindliness dared not expand to their detriment. Furthermore, the fact
of her husband being out of work tended to still further circumscribe
the limits of her generosity. She divined a lean pot in the Cafferty
household, and she saw the young man getting only as much food as Mrs.
Cafferty dared to give him, so that the pangs of his hunger almost
gnawed at her own vitals. Under these circumstances she had sought for
an opportunity to become better acquainted with him, and had very
easily succeeded; so when Mary found him seated on their bed and
eating violently of their half-loaf if she was astonished at first she
was also very glad. Her mother watched the demolition of their food
with a calm happiness, for, although the amount she could contribute
was small, every little helped, and not alone were his wants assisted,
but her friend, Mrs. Cafferty, and her children were also aided by
this dulling of an appetite which might have endangered their
household peace.

The young man repaid their hospitality by an easy generosity of speech
covering affairs which neither Mrs. Makebelieve nor her daughter had
many opportunities for studying. He spoke of those very interesting
matters with which a young man is concerned, and his speculations on
various subjects, while often quite ignorant, were sufficiently vivid
to be interesting and were wrong in a boyish fashion which was not
unpleasant. He was very argumentative, but was still open to reason;
therefore, Mrs. Makebelieve had opportunities for discussion which
were seldom granted to her. Insensibly she adopted the position of
guide, philosopher and friend to him, and Mary also found new
interests in speech, for, although the young man thought very
differently from her, he did think upon her own plane, and the things
which secretly engrossed him were also the things wherewith she was
deeply preoccupied. A community of ignorances may be as binding as a
community of interests. We have a dull suspicion of that him or her
who knows more than we do, but the person who is prepared to go out
adventuring with us with surmise only for a chart and enjoyment for a
guide may use our hand as his own and our pockets as his treasury.

As the young man had no more shyness than a cat it soon fell out that
he and Mary took their evening walks together. He was a clerk in a
large retail establishment, and had many things to tell Mary which
were of great interest to both of them. For in his place of business
he had both friends and enemies of whom he was able to speak with the
fluency which was their due. Mary knew, for instance, that the chief
was bald but decent (she could not believe that the connection was
natural), and that the second in command had neither virtues nor
whiskers. (She saw him as a codfish with a malignant eye.) He
epitomized the vices which belonged in detail to the world, but were
peculiar to himself in bulk. (He must be hairy in that event.)
Language, even the young man's, could not describe him adequately. (He
ate boys for breakfast and girls for tea.) With this person the young
man was in eternal conflict (a bear with little ears and big teeth);
not open conflict, for that would have meant instant dismissal (not
hairy at all--a long slimy eel with a lot of sense), but a veiled
unremitting warfare which occupied all their spare attention. The
young man knew for an actual fact that some day he would be compelled
to hit that chap, and it would be a sorry day for the fellow, because
his ability to hit was startling. He told Mary of the evil results
which had followed some of his blows, and Mary's incredulity was only
heightened by a display of the young man's muscles. She extolled these
because she thought it was her duty to do so, but preserved some
doubts of their unique destructiveness. Once she asked him could he
fight a policeman, and he assured her that policemen are not able to
fight at all singly, but only in squads, when their warfare is callous
and ugly and conducted mainly with their boots; so that decent people
have no respect for their fighting qualities or their private
characters. He assured her that not only could he fight a policeman,
but he could also tyrannize over the seed, breed and generation of
such a one, and, moreover, he could accomplish this without real
exertion. Against all policemen and soldiers the young man professed
an eager hostility, and with these bad people he included landlords
and many employers of labor. His denunciation of these folk might be
traced back to the belief that none of them treated one fairly. A
policeman, he averred, would arrest a man for next door to nothing,
and any resistance offered to their spleen rendered the unfortunate
prisoner liable to be man-handled in his cell until their outraged
dignity was appeased. The three capital crimes upon which a man is
liable to arrest is for being drunk, or disorderly, or for refusing to
fight, and to these perils a young man is peculiarly susceptible and
is, to that extent, interested in the Force, and critical of their
behavior. The sight of a soldier annoyed him, for he saw a conqueror,
trampling vaingloriously through the capital of his country, and the
inability of his land to eject the braggart astonished and mortified
him. Landlords had no bowels of compassion. There was no kindliness of
heart among them, nor any wish to assist those whose whole existence
was engaged on their behalf. He saw them as lazy unproductive gluttons
who cried forever "Give, give," and who gave nothing in return but an
increased insolent tyranny. Many employers came into the same black
category. They were people who had disowned all duty to humanity, and
who saw in themselves the beginning and the end of all things. They
gratified their acquisitiveness not in order that they might become
benefactors of their kind (the only righteous freedom of which we
know) but merely to indulge a petty exercise of power and to attain
that approval which is granted to wealth and the giving of which is
the great foolishness of mankind. These people used their helpers and
threw them away, they exploited and bought and sold their fellow-men
while their arrogant self-assurance and the monstrous power which they
had gathered for their security shocked him like a thing unbelievable
in spite of its reality. That such things could be fretted him into
clamor. He wanted to point them out to all people. He saw his
neighbors' ears clogged, and he was prepared to die howling if only he
could pierce those encrusted auditories. That what was so simple to
him should not be understood by everybody! He could see plainly and
others could not, although their eyes looked straightly forward and
veritably rolled with intent and consciousness! Did their eyes and
ears and brains act differently to his, or was he a singular monster
cursed from his birth with madness? At times he was prepared to let
humanity and Ireland go to the devil their own way, he being well
assured that without him they were bound quickly for deep perdition.
Of Ireland he sometimes spoke with a fervor of passion which would be
outrageous if addressed to a woman. Surely he saw her as a woman,
queenly and distressed and very proud. He was physically anguished for
her, and the man who loved her was the very brother of his bones.
There were some words the effect of which were almost hypnotic on
him--The Isle of the Blest, The Little Dark Rose, The Poor Old Woman
and Caitlin the Daughter of Holohan. The mere repetition of these
phrases lifted him to an ecstasy; they had hidden, magical meanings
which pricked deeply to his heartstrings and thrilled him to a
tempest of pity and love. He yearned to do deeds of valor, violent,
grandiose feats which would redound to her credit and make the name of
Irishmen synonymous with either greatness or singularity: for, as yet,
the distinction between these words was no more clear to him than it
is to any other young man who reads violence as heroism and
eccentricity as genius. Of England he spoke with something like
stupefaction--as a child cowering in a dark wood tells of the ogre who
has slain his father and carried his mother away to a drear captivity
in his castle built of bones--so he spoke of England. He saw an
English-man stalking hideously forward with a princess tucked under
each arm, while their brothers and their knights were netted in
enchantment and slept heedless of the wrongs done to their ladies and
of the defacement of their shields.... "Alas, alas and alas, for the
once-proud people of Banba!"


Mrs. Makebelieve was astonished when the policeman knocked at her
door. A knock at her door was a rare sound, for many years had gone by
since any one had come to visit her. Of late Mrs. Cafferty often came
to talk to her, but she never knocked: she usually shouted, "Can I
come in?" and then she came in. But this was a ceremonious knock which
startled her, and the spectacle of the great man bending through the
doorway almost stopped her breath. Mary also was so shocked into
terror that she stood still, forgetful of all good manners, and stared
at the visitor open-eyed. She knew and did not know what he had come
for; but that, in some way, his appearance related to her she was
instantly assured, although she could not even dimly guess at a
closer explanation of his visit. His eyes stayed on her for an instant
and then passed to her mother, and, following her rather tremulous
invitation, he came into the room. There was no chair to sit on, so
Mrs. Makebelieve requested him to sit down on the bed, which he did.
She fancied he had come on some errand from Mrs. O'Connor, and was
inclined to be angry at a visit which she construed as an intrusion,
so, when he was seated, she waited to hear what he might have to say.

Even to her it was evident that the big man was perplexed and abashed;
his hat was in his way and so were his hands, and when he spoke his
voice was so husky as to be distressful. On Mary, who had withdrawn to
the very end of the room, this discomfort of speech had a peculiar
effect: the unsteady voice touched her breast to a kindred fluttering,
and her throat grew parched and so irritated that a violent fit of
coughing could not be restrained, and this, with the nervousness and
alarm which his appearance had thronged upon her, drove her to a very
fever of distress. But she could not take her eyes away from him, and
she wondered and was afraid of what he might say. She knew there were
a great many things he might discuss which she would be loath to hear
in her mother's presence, and which her mother would not be gratified
to hear either.

He spoke for a few moments about the weather, and Mrs. Makebelieve
hearkened to his remarks with a perplexity which she made no effort to
conceal. She was quite certain he had not called to speak about the
weather, and she was prepared to tell him so if a suitable opportunity
should occur. She was also satisfied that he had not come on a formal,
friendly visit--the memory of her last interview with him forbade such
a conjecture, for on that occasion politeness had been deposed from
her throne and acrimony had reigned in her stead. If his aunt had
desired him to undertake an embassy to her he would surely have
delivered his message without preamble, and would not have been thrown
by so trifling a duty into the state of agitation in which he was. It
was obvious, therefore, that he had not come with a message relating
to her work. Something of fear touched Mrs. Makebelieve as she looked
at him, and her voice had an uneasy note when she requested to know
what she could do for him.

The policeman suddenly, with the gesture of one throwing away anchors,
plunged into the heart of his matter, and as he spoke the look on Mrs.
Makebelieve's face changed quickly from bewilderment to curiosity and
dulled again to a blank amazement. After the first few sentences she
half turned to Mary, but an obscure shame prevented her from searching
out her daughter's eyes. It was borne quickly and painfully to her
that Mary had not treated her fairly: there was a secret here with
which a mother ought to have been trusted, and one which she could not
believe Mary would have withheld from her; and so, gauging her child's
feelings by her own, she steadfastly refused to look at her lest the
shocked surprise in her eyes might lacerate the girl she loved, and
who she knew must at the instant be in a sufficient agony----
Undoubtedly the man was suggesting that he wanted to marry her
daughter, and the unexpectedness of such a proposal left her mentally
gaping; but that there must have been some preliminaries of meeting
and courtship became obvious to her. Mary also listened to his remarks
in a stupor. Was there no possibility at all of getting away from the
man? A tenacity such as this seemed to her malignant. She had the
feeling of one being pursued by some relentless and unscrupulous
hunter. She heard him speaking through a cloud, and the only things
really clear to her were the thoughts which she knew her mother must
be thinking. She was frightened and ashamed, and the sullenness which
is the refuge of most young people descended upon her like a darkness.
Her face grew heavy and vacant, and she stared in front of her in the
attitude of one who had nothing to do with what was passing. She did
not believe altogether that he was in earnest: her immediate
discomfort showed him as one who was merely seeking to get her into
trouble with her mother in order to gratify an impotent rage. Twice or
three times she flamed suddenly, went tiptoe to run from the room. A
flash, and she would be gone from the place, down the stairs, into the
streets and away anywhere, and she tingled with the very speed of her
vision; but she knew that one word from her mother would halt her like
a barrier, and she hated the thought that he should be a witness to
her obedience.

While he was speaking he did not look at Mary. He told Mrs.
Makebelieve that he loved her daughter very much, and he begged her
permission and favor for his suit. He gave her to understand that he
and Mary had many opportunities of becoming acquainted, and were at
one in this desire for matrimony---- To Mrs. Makebelieve's mind there
recurred a conversation which she had once held with her daughter,
when Mary was curious to know if a policeman was a desirable person
for a girl to marry? She saw this question now, not as being prompted
by a laudable, an almost scientific curiosity, but as the interested,
sly speculation of a schemer hideously accomplished in deceit. Mary
could see that memory flitting back through her mother's brain, and it
tormented her. Nor was her mother at ease--there was no chair to sit
upon, she had to stand and listen to all this while he spoke, more or
less at his ease, from the bed. If she also had been sitting down she
might have been mistress of her thoughts and able to deal naturally
with the situation; but an easy pose is difficult when standing: her
hands would fold in front of her and the schoolgirl attitude annoyed
and restrained her. Also, the man appeared to be in earnest in what he
said. His words at the least and the intention which drove them seemed
honorable. She could not give rein to her feelings without lapsing to
a barbarity which she might not justify to herself even in anger and
might, indeed, blush to remember. Perhaps his chief disqualification
consisted in a relationship to Mrs. O'Connor for which he could not
justly be held to blame, and for which she sincerely pitied him. But
this certainly was a disqualification never to be redeemed. He might
leave his work, or his religion, or his country, but he could never
quit his aunt, because he carried her with him under his skin; he was
her with additions, and at times Mrs. Makebelieve could see Mrs.
O'Connor looking cautiously at her through the policeman's eyes; a
turn of his forehead and she was there like a thin wraith that
vanished and appeared again. The man was spoiled for her. He did not
altogether lack sense, and the fact that he wished to marry her
daughter showed that he was not so utterly beyond the reach of
redemption as she had fancied.

Meanwhile, he had finished his statement as regarded the affection
which he bore to her daughter and the suitability of their
temperaments, and had hurled himself into an explanation of his
worldly affairs, comprising his salary as a policeman, the possibility
of promotion and the increased emoluments which would follow it, and
the certain pension which would sustain his age. There was,
furthermore, his parents, from whose decease he would reap certain
monetary increments, and the deaths of other relatives from which an
additional enlargement of his revenues might reasonably be expected.
Indeed, he had not desired to speak of these matters at all, but the
stony demeanor of Mrs. Makebelieve and the sullen aloofness of her
daughter forced him, however reluctantly, to draw even ignoble weapons
from his armory. He had not conceived they would be so obdurate: he
had, in fact, imagined that the elder woman must be flattered by his
offer to marry her daughter, and when no evidence to support this was
forthcoming he was driven to appeal to the cupidity which he believed
occupies the heart of every middle-aged, hard-worked woman. But these
statements also were received with a dreadful composure. He could have
smashed Mrs. Makebelieve where she stood. Now and again his body
strained to a wild, physical outburst, a passionate, red fury that
would have terrified these women to their knees, while he roared their
screams into thin whimpers as a man should. He did not even dare to
stop speaking, and his efforts at an easy, good-humored, half-careless
presentation of his case was bitterly painful to him as it was to his
auditors. The fact that they were both standing up unnerved him
also--the pleasant equality which should have formed the atmosphere of
such an interview was destroyed from the first moment, and, having
once sat down, he did not like to stand up again. He felt glued to the
bed on which he sat, and he felt also that if he stood up the tension
in the room would so relax that Mrs. Makebelieve would at once break
out into speech sarcastic and final, or her daughter might scream
reproaches and disclaimers of an equal finality. At her he did not
dare to look, but the corner of his eye could see her shape stiffened
against the fireplace, an attitude so different from the pliable
contours to which he was accustomed in her as almost to be repellant.
He would have thanked God to find himself outside the room, but how to
get out of it he did not know: his self-esteem forbade anything like a
retreat without honor, his nervousness did not permit him to move at
all, the anger which prickled the surface of his body and mind was
held in check only by an instinct of fear as to what he might do if he
moved, and so, with dreadful jocularity, he commenced to speak of
himself, his personal character, his sobriety and steadiness--of all
those safe negations on which many women place reliance he spoke, and
also of certain small vices which he magnified merely for the sake of
talking, such as smoking, an odd glass of porter and the shilling
which, now and again, he had ventured upon a race horse.

Mary listened to him for a while with angry intentness. The fact that
she was the subject of his extraordinary discourse quickened at the
first all her apprehensions. Had the matter been less important she
would have been glad to look at herself in this strange position, and
to savor, with as much detachment as was possible, the whole spirit of
the adventure. But when she heard him, as she put it, "telling on
her," laying bare to her mother all the walks they had taken together,
visits to restaurants and rambles through the streets and the parks,
what he had said to her on this occasion and on that, and her remarks
on such and such a matter, she could not visualize him save as a
malignant and uncultivated person; and when he tacitly suggested that
she was as eager for matrimony as he was, and so put upon her the
horrible onus of rejecting him before a second person, she closed her
mind and her ears against him. She refused to listen, although her
perceptions admitted the trend of his speech. His words droned heavily
and monotonously to her as through dull banks of fog. She made up her
mind that if she were asked any questions by either of them she would
not reply, and that she would not look at either of them, and then she
thought that she would snap and stamp her feet and say that she hated
him, that he had looked down on her because she worked for his aunt,
that he had meanly been ashamed of and cut her because she was poor,
that he had been going with another girl all the time he was going
with her and that he only pursued her in order to annoy her, that she
didn't love him, that she didn't even like him, that, in fact, she
disliked him heartily. She wished to say all these things in one
whirling outcry, but feared that before she had rightly begun she might
become abashed, or, worse, might burst into tears and lose all the
dignity which she meant to preserve in his presence for the purpose of
showing to him in the best light exactly what he was losing.

But the big man had come to the end of his speech. He made a few
attempts to begin anew on the desirability of such a union for both of
them, and the happiness it would give him if Mrs. Makebelieve would
come to live with them when they were married. He refused to let it
appear that there was any doubt as to Mary's attitude in the matter,
for up to the moment he came to their door he had not doubted her
willingness himself. Her late avoidance of him he had put down to mere
feminine tactics which leads on by holding off. The unwilling person
he had been assured was himself--he stooped to her, and it was only
after a severe battle that he had been able to do it. The astonishment
and disapproval of his relatives and friends at such a step was very
evident to him, for to a man of his position and figure girls were
cheap creatures, the best of them to be had for the mere asking.
Therefore, the fact that this girl could be seriously rejecting his
offer of marriage came upon him like red astonishment. He had no more
to say, however, and he blundered and fumbled into silence.

For a moment or two the little room was so still that the quietness
seemed to hum and buzz like an eternity. Then, with a sigh, Mrs.
Makebelieve spoke.

"I don't know at all," said she, "why you should speak to me about
this, for neither my daughter nor yourself have ever even hinted to me
before that you were courting one another. Why Mary should keep such a
secret from her own mother I don't know. Maybe I've been cruel and
frightened her, although I don't remember doing anything that she
could have against me of that sort: or, maybe, she didn't think I was
wise enough to advise her about a particular thing like her marriage,
for, God knows, old women are foolish enough in their notions, or else
they wouldn't be slaving and grinding for the sake of their children
the way they do be doing year in and year out, every day in the week,
and every hour of the day. It isn't any wonder at all that a child
would be a liar and a sleeveen and a trampler of the roads with the
first man that nods to her when her mother is a foolish person that
she can't trust. Of course, I wouldn't be looking for a gentleman like
yourself to mention the matter to me when I might be scrubbing out
your aunt's kitchen or her hall door maybe, and you sitting in the
parlor with the company. Sure, I'm only an old charwoman, and what
does it matter at all what I'd be thinking, or whether I'd be agreeing
or not to anything? Don't I get my wages for my work, and what more
does anybody want in the world? As for me going to live with you when
you are married--it was kind of you to ask me that; but it's not the
sort of thing I'm likely to do, for if I didn't care for you as a
stranger I'm not going to like you any better as my daughter's
husband. You'll excuse me saying one thing, Sir, but while we are
talking we may as well be talking out, and it's this, that I never did
like you, and I never will like you, and I'd sooner see my daughter
married to any one at all than to yourself. But, sure, I needn't be
talking about it; isn't it Mary's business altogether, and she'll be
settling it with you nicely I don't doubt. She's a practiced hand now
at arranging things, like you are yourself, and it will do me good to
be learning something from her."

Mrs. Makebelieve took a cloth in her hand and walked over to the
fireplace, which she commenced to polish.

The big man looked at Mary. It was incumbent on him to say something.
Twice he attempted to speak, and each time, on finding himself about
to say something regarding the weather, he stopped. Mary did not look
at him; her eyes were fixed stubbornly on a part of the wall well away
from his neighborhood, and it seemed to him that she had made a vow to
herself never to look at him again. But the utter silence of the room
was unbearable. He knew that he ought to get up and go out, but he
could not bring himself to do so. His self-love, his very physical
strength, rebelled against so tame a surrender. One thought he
gathered in from swaying vacuity--that the timid little creature whom
he had patronized would not find the harsh courage to refuse him
point-blank if he charged her straightly with the question, and so he
again assayed speech.

"Your mother is angry with us, Mary," said he, "and I suppose she has
good right to be angry; but the reason I did not speak to her before,
as I admit I should have if I had done the right thing, was that I had
very few chances of meeting her, and never did meet her without some
other person being there at the same time. I suppose the reason you
did not say anything was that you wanted to be quite sure of yourself
and of me too before you mentioned it. We have both done the wrong
thing in not being open, but maybe your mother will forgive us when
she knows we had no intention of hurting her, or of doing anything
behind her back. Your mother seems to hate me: I don't know why,
because she hardly knows me at all, and I've never done her any harm
or said a word against her. Perhaps when she knows me as well as you
do she'll change her mind: but you know I love you better than any one
else, and that I'd do anything I could to please you and be a good
husband to you. What I want to ask you before your mother is,--will
you marry me?"

Mary made no reply. She did not look or give the slightest sign that
she had heard. But now it was that she did not dare to look at him.
The spectacle of this big man badgered by her and by her mother,
pleading to her, and pleading, as he and she well knew, hopelessly,
would have broken her heart if she looked at him. She had to admire
the good masculine fight he made of it. Even his tricks of word and
tactic, which she instantly divined, moved her almost to tears; but
she feared terribly that if she met his gaze she might not be able to
resist his huge helplessness, and that she might be compelled to do
whatever he begged of her even in despite of her own wishes.

The interval which followed his question weighed heavily upon them
all. It was only broken by Mrs. Makebelieve, who began to hum a song
as she polished the fire grate. She meant to show her careless
detachment from the whole matter, but in the face of Mary's silence
she could not keep it up. After a few moments she moved around and

"Why don't you answer the gentleman, Mary?"

Mary turned and looked at her, and the tears which she had resisted so
long swam in her eyes: although she could keep her features composed
she had no further command over her tears.

"I'll answer whatever you ask me, mother," she whispered.

"Then, tell the gentleman whether you will marry him or not."

"I don't want to marry any one at all," said Mary.

"You are not asked to marry any one, darling," said Mrs. Makebelieve,
"but some one--this gentleman here whose name I don't happen to know.
Do you know his name?"

"No," said Mary.

"My name...." began the policeman.

"It doesn't matter, Sir," said Mrs. Makebelieve. "Do you want to marry
this gentleman, Mary?"

"No," whispered Mary.

"Are you in love with him?"

Mary turned completely away from him.

"No," she whispered again.

"Do you think you ever will be in love with him?"

She felt as a rat might when hunted to a corner. But the end must be
very near; this could not last forever because nothing can. Her lips
were parched, her eyes were burning. She wanted to lie down and go
asleep and waken again laughing to say--"it was a dream."

Her reply was almost inaudible. "No," she said.

"You are quite sure? It is always better to be quite sure."

She did not answer any more, but the faint droop of her head gave the
reply her mother needed.

"You see, Sir," said Mrs. Makebelieve, "that you were mistaken in your
opinion. My daughter is not old enough yet to be thinking of marriage
and such like. Children do be thoughtless. I am sorry for all the
trouble she has given you, and"--a sudden compunction stirred her, for
the man was standing up now, and there was no trace of Mrs. O'Connor
visible in him: his face was as massive and harsh as a piece of wall.
"Don't you be thinking too badly of us now," said Mrs. Makebelieve
with some agitation; "the child is too young altogether to be asking
her to marry. Maybe in a year or two--I said things I know, but I was
vexed, and...."

The big man nodded his head and marched out.

Mary ran to her mother moaning like a sick person, but Mrs.
Makebelieve did not look at her. She lay down on the bed and turned
her face to the wall, and she did not speak to Mary for a long time.


When the young man who lodged with Mrs. Cafferty came in on the
following day he presented a deplorable appearance. His clothes were
torn and his face had several large strips of sticking-plaster on it,
but he seemed to be in a mood of extraordinary happiness
notwithstanding, and proclaimed that he had participated in the one
really great fight of his life-time, that he wasn't injured at all,
and that he wouldn't have missed it for a pension.

Mrs. Cafferty was wild with indignation, and marched him into Mrs.
Makebelieve's room, where he had to again tell his story and have his
injuries inspected and commiserated. Even Mr. Cafferty came into the
room on this occasion. He was a large, slow man dressed very
comfortably in a red beard--his beard was so red and so persistent
that it quite overshadowed the rest of his wrappings and did, indeed,
seem to clothe him. As he stood the six children walked in and out of
his legs, and stood on his feet in their proper turns without causing
him any apparent discomfort. During the young man's recital Mr.
Cafferty every now and then solemnly and powerfully smote his left
hand with his right fist, and requested that the aggressor should be
produced to him.

The young man said that as he was coming home the biggest man in the
world walked up to him. He had never set eyes on the man before in his
life, and thought at first he wanted to borrow a match or ask the way
to somewhere, or something like that, and, accordingly, he halted; but
the big man gripped him by the shoulder and said "You damned young
whelp," and then he laughed and hit him a tremendous blow with his
other hand. He twisted himself free at that, and said "What's that
for?" and then the big man made another desperate clout at him. A
fellow wasn't going to stand that kind of thing, so he let out at him
with his left and then jumped in with two short-arm jabs that must
have tickled the chap; that fellow didn't have it all his own way
anyhow.... The young man exhibited his knuckles, which were skinned
and bleeding, as evidence of some exchange; but, he averred, you might
as well be punching a sack of coal as that man's face. In another
minute they both slipped and rolled over and over in the road, hitting
and kicking as they sprawled: then a crowd of people ran forward and
pulled them asunder. When they were separated he saw the big man lift
his fist, and the person who was holding him ducked suddenly and ran
for his life: the other folk got out of the way too, and the big man
walked over to where he stood and stared into his face. His jaw was
stuck out like the seat of a chair and his moustache was like a
bristle of barbed wire. The young man said to him, "What the hell's
wrong with you to go bashing a man for nothing at all?" and all of a
sudden the big fellow turned and walked away. It was a grand fight
altogether, said the youth, but the other man was a mile and a half
too big for him.

As this story proceeded Mrs. Makebelieve looked once or twice at her
daughter. Mary's face had gone very pale, and she nodded back a
confirmation of her mother's conjecture; but it did not seem necessary
or wise to either of them that they should explain their thoughts. The
young man did not require either condolences or revenge. He was well
pleased at an opportunity to measure his hardihood against a worthy
opponent. He had found that his courage exceeded his strength, as it
always should, for how could we face the gods and demons of existence
if our puny arms were not backed up by our invincible eyes? and he
displayed his contentment at the issue as one does a banner emblazoned
with merits. Mrs. Makebelieve understood also that the big man's
action was merely his energetic surrender, as of one who, instead of
tendering his sword courteously to the victor, hurls it at him with a
malediction; and that in assaulting their friend he was bidding them
farewell as heartily and impressively as he was able. So they fed the
young man and extolled him, applauding to the shrill winding of his
trumpet until he glowed again in the full satisfaction of heroism.

He and Mary did not discontinue their evening walks. Of these Mrs.
Makebelieve was fully cognizant, and, although she did not remark on
the fact, she had been observing the growth of their intimacy with a
care which was one part approval and one part pain; for it was very
evident to her that her daughter was no longer a child to be
controlled and directed by authority. Her little girl was a big girl;
she had grown up and was eager to undertake the business of life on
her own behalf. But the period of Mrs. Makebelieve's motherhood had
drawn to a close, and her arms were empty. She was too used now to
being a mother to relinquish easily the prerogatives of that status,
and her discontent had this justification and assistance that it could
be put into definite words, fronted and approved or rejected as reason
urged. By knowledge and thought we will look through a stone wall if
we look long enough, for we see less through eyes than through Time.
Time is the clarifying perspective whereby myopia of any kind is
adjusted, and a thought emerges in its field as visibly as a tree does
in nature's. Mrs. Makebelieve saw seventeen years' apprenticeship to
maternity canceled automatically without an explanation or a courtesy,
and for a little time her world was in ruins, the ashes of existence
powdered her hair and her forehead. Then she discovered that the
debris was valuable in known currency; the dust was golden: her love
remained to her undisturbed and unlikely to be disturbed by whatever
event. And she discovered further that parentage is neither a game nor
a privilege but a duty; it is, astounding thought, the care of the
young until the young can take care of itself. It was for this freedom
only that her elaborate care had been necessary; her bud had blossomed
and she could add no more to its bloom or fragrance. Nothing had
happened that was not natural, and whoso opposes his brow against that
imperious urgency is thereby renouncing his kind and claiming a
kinship with the wild boar and the goat, which they, too, may
repudiate with leaden foreheads. There remained also the common human
equality, not alone of blood, but of sex also, which might be fostered
and grow to an intimacy more dear and enduring, more lovely and loving
than the necessarily one-sided devotions of parentage. Her duties in
that relationship having been performed, it was her daughter's turn to
take up her's and prove her rearing by repaying to her mother the
conscious love which intelligence and a good heart dictates. This
given, Mrs. Makebelieve could smile happily again, for her arms would
be empty only for a little time. The continuity of nature does not
fail saving for extraordinary instances. She sees to it that a breast
and an arm shall not very long be unoccupied, and, consequently, as
Mrs. Makebelieve sat contemplating that futurity which is nothing more
than a prolongation of experience she could smile contentedly, for all
was very well.


If the unexpected did not often happen life would be a logical,
scientific progression which might become dispirited and repudiate its
goal for very boredom, but nature has cunningly diversified the
methods whereby she coaxes or coerces us to prosecute, not our own,
but her own adventure. Beyond every corner there may be a tavern or a
church wherein both the saint and the sinner may be entrapped and
remolded. Beyond the skyline you may find a dynamite cartridge, a
drunken tinker, a mad dog, or a shilling which some person has
dropped; and any one of these unexpectednesses may be potent to urge
the traveler down a side street and put a crook in the straight line
which had been his life, and to which he had become miserably
reconciled. The element of surprise being, accordingly, one of the
commonest things in the world we ought not to be hypercritical in our
review of singularities, or say--"These things do not happen,"--because
it is indisputable that they do happen. That combination which
comprises a dark night, a highwayman armed and hatted to the teeth,
and myself, may be a purely fortuitous one, but will such a criticism
bring any comfort to the highwayman? And the concourse of three
benevolent millionaires with the person to whom poverty can do no
more is so pleasant and possible that I marvel it does not occur more
frequently. I am prepared to believe on the very lightest assurance
that these things do happen, but are hushed up for reasons which
would be cogent enough if they were available.

Mrs. Makebelieve opened the letter which the evening's post had
brought to her. She had pondered well before opening it, and had
discussed with her daughter all the possible people who could have
written it. The envelope was long and narrow, it was addressed in a
swift emphatic hand, the tail of the letter M enjoying a career
distinguished beyond any of its fellows by length and beauty. The
envelope, moreover, was sealed by a brilliant red lion with jagged
whiskers and a simper, who threatened the person daring to open a
missive not addressed to him with the vengeance of a battle-axe which
was balanced lightly but truculently on his right claw.

This envelope contained several documents purporting to be copies of
extraordinary originals, and amongst them a letter which was read by
Mrs. Makebelieve more than ten thousand times or ever she went to bed
that night. It related that more than two years previously one Patrick
Joseph Brady had departed this life, and that his will, dated from a
multitudinous address in New York, devised and bequeathed to his
dearly beloved sister Mary Eileen Makebelieve, otherwise Brady, the
following shares and securities for shares, to wit:--and the
thereinafter mentioned houses and messuages, lands, tenements,
hereditaments and premises, that was to say:--and all household
furniture, books, pictures, prints, plate, linen, glass and objects of
vertu, carriages, wines, liquors and all consumable stores and effects
whatsoever then in the house so and so, and all money then in the Bank
and thereafter to accrue due upon the thereinbefore mentioned stocks,
funds, shares and securities.... Mrs. Makebelieve wept and besought
God not to make a fool of a woman who was not only poor but old. The
letter requested her to call on the following day, or at her earliest
convenience, to "the above address," and desired that she should bring
with her such letters or other documents as would establish her
relationship to the deceased and assist in extracting the necessary
Grant of Probate to the said Will, and it was subscribed by Messrs.
Platitude & Glambe, Solicitors, Commissioners for Oaths and Protectors
of the Poor.

To the Chambers of these gentlemen Mrs. Makebelieve and Mary repaired
on the following day, and, having produced the letters and other
documents for inspection, the philanthropists, Platitude and Glambe,
professed themselves to be entirely satisfied as to their bona fides,
and exhibited an eagerness to be of immediate service to the ladies in
whatever capacity might be conceived. Mrs. Makebelieve instantly
invoked the Pragmatic Sanction; she put the entire matter to the
touchstone of absolute verity by demanding an advance of fifty pounds.
Her mind reeled as she said the astounding amount, but her voice did
not. A check was signed and a clerk dispatched, who returned with
eight five-pound notes and ten sovereigns of massy gold. Mrs.
Makebelieve secreted these, and went home marveling to find that she
was yet alive. No trams ran over her. The motor cars pursued her, and
were evaded. She put her hope in God, and explained so breathlessly to
the furious street. One cyclist who took corners on trust she cursed
by the Ineffable Name, but instantly withdrew the malediction for
luck, and addressed his dwindling back with an eye of misery and a
voice of benediction. For a little time neither she nor her daughter
spoke of the change in their fortunes saving in terms of allusion;
they feared that, notwithstanding their trust, God might hear and
shatter them with His rolling laughter. They went out again that day
furtively and feverishly and bought....

But on the following morning Mrs. Makebelieve returned again to her
labor. She intended finishing her week's work with Mrs. O'Connor (it
might not last for a week). She wished to observe that lady with the
exact particularity, the singleness of eye, the true, candid, critical
scrutiny which had hitherto been impossible to her. It was, she said
to Mary, just possible that Mrs. O'Connor might make some remarks
about soap. It was possible that the lady might advance theories as to
how this or that particular kind of labor ought to be conducted....
Mrs. Makebelieve's black eye shone upon her child with a calm peace, a
benevolent happiness rare indeed to human regard.

In the evening of that day Mary and the young man who lodged with
their neighbor went out for the walk which had become customary with
them. The young man had been fed with an amplitude which he had never
known before, so that not even the remotest slim thread, shred, hint,
echo or memory of hunger remained with him: he tried but could not
make a dint in himself anywhere, and, consequently, he was as sad as
only a well-fed person can be. Now that his hunger was gone he deemed
that all else was gone also. His hunger, his sweetheart, his hopes,
his good looks (for his injuries had matured to the ripe purple of
the perfect bruise) all were gone, gone, gone. He told it to Mary, but
she did not listen to him; to the rolling sky he announced it and it
paid no heed. He walked beside Mary at last in silence, listening to
her plans and caprices, the things she would do and buy, the people to
whom gifts should be made and the species of gift uniquely suitable to
this person and to that person, the people to whom money might be
given and the amounts, and the methods whereby such largesse could be
distributed. Hats were mentioned and dresses, and the new house
somewhere--a space-embracing-somewhere, beyond surmise, beyond
geography. They walked onwards for a long time, so long that at last a
familiar feeling stole upon the youth. The word "food" seemed suddenly
a topic worthy of the most spirited conversation. His spirits arose.
He was no longer solid, space belonged to him also, it was in him and
of him, and so there was a song in his heart. He was hungry and the
friend of man again. Now everything was possible. The girl? Was she
not by his side? The regeneration of Ireland and of Man? That could be
done also; a little leisure and everything that can be thought can be
done: even his good looks might be returned to him: he felt the sting
and tightness of his bruises and was reassured, exultant. He was a man
predestined to bruises; they would be his meat and drink and
happiness, his refuge and sanctuary forever. Let us leave him, then,
pacing volubly by the side of Mary, and exploring with a delicate
finger his half-closed eye, which, until it was closed entirely, would
always be half-closed by the decent buffet of misfortune. His ally and
stay was hunger, and there is no better ally for any man: that
satisfied and the game is up; for hunger is life, ambition, good-will
and understanding, while fullness is all those negatives which
culminate in greediness, stupidity and decay; so his bruises troubled
him no further than as they affected the eyes of a lady wherein he
prayed to be comely.

Bruises, unless they are desperate indeed, will heal at the last for
no other reason than that they must. The inexorable compulsion of all
things is towards health or destruction, life or death, and we hasten
our joys or our woes to the logical extreme. It is urgent, therefore,
that we be joyous if we wish to live. Our heads may be as solid as is
possible, but our hearts and our heels shall be light or we are
ruined. As to the golden mean--let us have nothing to do with that
thing at all; it may only be gilded, it is very likely made of tin of
a dull color and a lamentable sound, unworthy even of being stolen;
and unless our treasures may be stolen they are of no use to us. It is
contrary to the laws of life to possess that which other people do not
want; therefore, your beer shall foam, your wife shall be pretty, and
your little truth shall have a plum in it--for this is so; that your
beer can only taste of your company, you can only know your wife when
some one else does, and your little truth shall be savored or perish.
Do you demand a big truth? Then, Oh Ambitious! you must turn aside
from all your companions and sit very quietly, and if you sit long
enough and quiet enough it may come to you; but this thing alone of
all things you cannot steal, nor can it be given to you by the County
Council. It cannot be communicated, and yet you may get it. It is
unspeakable but not unthinkable, and it is born as certainly and
unaccountably as you were yourself, and is of just as little immediate
consequence. Long, long ago in the dim beginnings of the world there
was a careless and gay young man who said--"Let truth go to hell"--and
it went there. It was his misfortune that he had to follow it; it is
ours that we are his descendants. An evil will either kill you or be
killed by you, and (the reflection is comforting) the odds are with us
in every fight waged against humanity by the dark or elemental beings.
But humanity is timid and lazy, a believer in golden means and
subterfuges and compromises, loath to address itself to any combat
until its frontiers are virtually overrun and its cities and granaries
and places of refuge are in jeopardy from those gloomy marauders. In
that wide struggle which we call Progress, evil is always the
aggressor and the vanquished, and it is right that this should be so,
for without its onslaughts and depredations humanity might fall to a
fat slumber upon its corn sacks and die snoring: or, alternatively,
lacking these valorous alarms and excursions it might become
self-satisfied and formularized, and be crushed to death by the mere
dull density of virtue. Next to good the most valuable factor in life
is evil. By the interaction of these all things are possible, and,
therefore (or for any other reason that pleases you) let us wave a
friendly hand in the direction of that bold, bad policeman whose
thoughts were not governed by the Book of Regulations which is issued
to all recruits, and who, in despite of the fact that he was enrolled
among the very legions of order, had that chaos in his soul which may
"give birth to a Dancing Star."

As to Mary--even ordinary, workaday politeness frowns on too abrupt a
departure from a lady, particularly one whom we have companioned thus
distantly from the careless simplicity of girlhood to the equally
careless but complex businesses of adolescence. The world is all before
her, and her chronicler may not be her guide. She will have adventures,
for everybody has. She will win through with them, for everybody does.
She may even meet bolder and badder men than the policeman--Shall we
then detain her? I, for one, having urgent calls elsewhere, will salute
her fingers and raise my hat and stand aside, and you will do likewise,
because it is my pleasure that you should. She will go forward, then,
to do that which is pleasing to the gods, for less than that she cannot
do, and more is not to be expected of any one.


       *       *       *       *       *

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Complete List of Titles

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A MODERN BOOK OF CRITICISMS (81) Edited with an Introduction by


Winesburg, Ohio, (104)


The Seven That Were Hanged and The Red Laugh (45) Introduction by


Rezanov (71) Introduction by WILLIAM MARION REEDY

BALZAC, HONORE DE (1799-1850)

Short Stories (40)


His Prose and Poetry (70)


64 Black and White Reproductions (42) Introduction by ARTHUR SYMONS


Zuleika Dobson (50) Introduction by FRANCIS HACKETT


Introduction by ARTHUR B. REEVE


Edited with an Introduction by ALEXANDER JESSUP


Edited with an Introduction by THOMAS SELTZER

BLAKE, WILLIAM (1757-1827)

Poems (91) Edited with notes by WILLIAM BUTLER YEATS

BUTLER, SAMUEL (1835-1902)

The Way of All Flesh (13)


Beyond Life (25) Introduction by GUY HOLT


Love's Coming of Age (51)

CHEKHOV, ANTON (1860-1904)

Rothschild's Fiddle and Thirteen Other Stories (31)

CHESTERTON, G. K. (1874-)

The Man Who Was Thursday (35)


Edited with an Introduction by Dr. BENJ. HARROW


Men, Women and Boats (102) Introduction by VINCENT STARRETT


The Flame of Life (65)

The Triumph of Death (112) Introduction by BURTON RASCOE


Poems (60)

DAUDET, ALPHONSE (1840-1897)

Sapho (85) In same volume Prevost's "Manon Lescaut"


Poor People (10) Introduction by THOMAS SELTZER

DOWSON, ERNEST (1867-1900)

Poems and Prose (74) Introduction by ARTHUR SYMONS


Free and Other Stories (50) Introduction by H. L. MENCKEN

DUNSANY, LORD (Edward John Plunkett) (1878-)

A Dreamer's Tales (34) Introduction by PADRIAC COLUM

Book of Wonder (43)


The New Spirit (95) Introduction by the author


A Symposium, including Essays by Haeckel, Thomson, Weismann, etc.


Madame Bovary (28)

The Temptation of St. Anthony (92) Translated by LAFCADIO HEARN


Marjorie Fleming's Book (93) Introduction by CLIFFORD SMYTH


The Crime of Sylvestre Bonnard (22) Introduction by LAFCADIO HEARN

The Queen Pedauque (110) Introduction by JAMES BRANCH CABELL

The Red Lily (7)

Thais (67) Introduction by HENDRIK W. VAN LOON


John Uhl (101) Introduction by LUDWIG LEWISOHN


Mlle. de Maupin (53)

GEORGE, W. L. (1882-)

A Bed of Roses (75) Introduction by EDGAR SALTUS

GILBERT, W. S. (1836-1911)

The Mikado, The Pirates of Penzance, Iolanthe, The Gondoliers, (26)
Introduction by CLARENCE DAY, Jr.

GISSING, GEORGE, (1857-1903)

The Private Papers of Henry Ryecroft (46) Introduction by PAUL ELMER

De GONCOURT, E. and J. (1822-1896) (1830-1870)

Renee Mauperin (76) Introduction by EMILE ZOLA

GORKY, MAXIM (1868-)

Creatures That Once Were Men and Four Other Stories (48)
Introduction by G. K. CHESTERTON


The Mayor of Casterbridge (17) Introduction by JOYCE KILMER


Erik Dorn (29) Introduction by BURTON RASCOE

HUDSON, W. H. (1862-)

Green Mansions (89) Introduction by JOHN GALSWORTHY


The Cabin (69) Introduction by JOHN GARRETT UNDERHILL

IBSEN, HENRIK (1828-1906)

A Doll's House, Ghosts, An Enemy of the People (6); Hedda Gabler,
Pillars of Society, The Master Builder (36) Introduction by H. L.

The Wild Duck, Rosmersholm, The League of Youth (54)

JAMES, HENRY (1843-1916)

Daisy Miller and An International Episode (63) Introduction by


Soldiers Three (3)


Men in War (88)

LAWRENCE, D. H. (1887-)

Sons and Lovers (109) Introduction by JOHN MACY

introduction by RICHARD LE GALLIENNE

LOTI, PIERRE (1850-)

Madame Chrysantheme (94)

MACY, JOHN (1877-)

The Spirit of American Literature (56)


A Miracle of St. Antony, Pelleas and Melisande, The Death of
Tintagiles, Alladine and Palomides, Interior, The Intruder (11)

DeMAUPASSANT, GUY (1850-1893)

Love and Other Stories (72) Edited and translated with an
Introduction by MICHAEL MONAHAN

Mademoiselle Fifi, and Twelve Other Stories (8); Une Vie (57)
Introduction by HENRY JAMES

MEREDITH, GEORGE (1828-1909)

Diana of the Crossways (14) Introduction by ARTHUR SYMONS


Plays (78) Introduction by WALDO FRANK


Confessions of a Young Man (16) Introduction by FLOYD DELL


Tales of Mean Streets (100) Introduction by H. L. MENCKEN


Thus Spake Zarathustra (9) Introduction by FRAU FOERSTER-NIETZSCHE

Beyond Good and Evil (20) Introduction by WILLARD HUNTINGTON WRIGHT

Genealogy of Morals (62)


The Moon of the Carribbees and Six Other Plays of the Sea (111)
Introduction by GEORGE JEAN NATHAN


In a Winter City (24) Introduction by CARL VAN VECHTEN

PAINE, THOMAS (1737-1809)

Selections from the Writings of Thomas Paine (108) Edited with an
Introduction by CARL VAN DOREN

PATER, WALTER (1839-1894)

Marius the Epicurean (90)

The Renaissance (86) Introduction by ARTHUR SYMONS


Condensed. Introduction by RICHARD LE GALLIENNE


Manon Lescaut (85) In same volume with Daudet's Sapho


A Symposium of the latest expressions by the leaders of the various
schools of the new psychology. Edited by J. S. VAN TESLAAR

RODIN, THE ART OF (1840-1917)

64 Black and White Reproductions (41) Introduction by LOUIS WEINBERG


Anatol, Living Hours, The Green Cockatoo (32) Introduction by ASHLEY

Bertha Garlan (39)


Studies in Pessimism (12) Introduction by T. B. SAUNDERS

SHAW, G. B. (1856-)

An Unsocial Socialist (15)


The Belfry (68)


Mary, Mary (30) Introduction by PADRIAC COLUM


Treasure Island (4)

STIRNER, MAX (Johann Caspar Schmidt) (1806-1859)

The Ego and His Own (49)


Married (2) Introduction by THOMAS SELTZER

Miss Julie, The Creditor, The Stronger Woman, Motherly Love, Paria,
Simoon (52)


Dame Care (33)


Poems (23) Introduction by ERNEST RHYS


Complete Poems (38)

TOLSTOY, LEO (1828-1910)

Redemption and Two Other Plays (77) Introduction by ARTHUR HOPKINS

The Death of Ivan Ilyitch and Four Other Stories (64)

TURGENEV, IVAN (1818-1883)

Fathers and Sons (21) Introduction by THOMAS SELTZER

Smoke (80) Introduction by JOHN REED


Ancient Man (105)


Poems (58) Introduction by JOHN PAYNE


Candide (47) Introduction by PHILIP LITTELL

WELLS, H. G. (1866-)

Ann Veronica (27)

The War in the Air (5) New Preface by H. G. Wells for this edition


Poems (97) Introduction by CARL SANDBURG

WILDE, OSCAR (1859-1900)

An Ideal Husband, A Woman of No Importance (84)

Dorian Gray (1)

Fairy Tales and Poems in Prose (61)

Intentions (96)

Poems (19)

Salome, The Importance of Being Earnest, Lady Windermere's Fan (83)
Introduction by EDGAR SALTUS


Selected Addresses and Public Papers (55) Edited with an
introduction by ALBERT BUSHNELL HART


A Symposium, including Essays by Ellen Key, Havelock Ellis, G. Lowes
Dickinson, etc. Edited by T. R. SMITH

YEATS, W. B. (1865-)

Irish Fairy and Folk Tales (44)

Transcriber's Notes:

There are several misspellings in the text, such as eagnerness, Padriac.

"deary" & "dearie" are both used.

There are instances of missing capitals, such as 'alanna' and several
first words of sentences.

There are several instances of missing punctuation.

Mary's room is described as being "one square inch" in size in original

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search solutions for business and government.  The company's award-winning
software suite offers a broad range of search, navigation and discovery
solutions for desktop search, intranet search, SharePoint search and embedded
search applications.  ISYS has been deployed by thousands of organizations
operating in a variety of industries, including government, legal, law
enforcement, financial services, healthcare and recruitment.