jriggenbach Posted February 7, 2010 Share Posted February 7, 2010 "My world of human beings had perished; I was utterly alone inthe world and for friends I had the streets, and the streets spoketo me in that sad, bitter language compounded of human misery,yearning, regret, failure, wasted effort. Passing under the viaductalong the Rue Broca, one night after I had been informed that Monawas ill and starving, I suddenly recalled that it was here in thesqualor and gloom of this sunken street, terrorized perhaps by apremonition of the future, that Mona clung to me and with aquivering voice begged me to promise that I would never leave her,never, no matter what happened. And, only a few days later, I stoodon the platform of the Gare St. Lazare and I watched the train pullout, the train that was bearing her away: she was leaning out ofthe window, just as she had leaned out of the window when I lefther in New York, and there was that same, sad, inscrutable smile onher face, that last-minute look which is intended to convey somuch, but which is only a mask that is twisted by a vacant smile.Only a few days before, she had clung to me desperately and thensomething happened, something which is not even clear to me now,and of her own volition she boarded the train and she was lookingat me again with that sad, enigmatic smile which baffles me, whichis unjust, unnatural, which I distrust with all my soul. And now itis I, standing in the shadow of the viaduct, who reach out for herwho cling to her desperately and there is that same inexplicablesmile on my lips, the mask that I have clamped down over my grief.I can stand here and smile vacantly, and no matter how fervid myprayers, no matter how desperate my longing, there is an oceanbetween us; there she will stay and starve, and here I shall walkfrom one street to the next, the hot tears scalding my face." Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...
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