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Pickle Me This

June 18, 2007

In honour of love

I should post my reading from Bronwyn’s wedding. I have mentioned the trouble I had selecting a reading, but once I saw this one, I knew it was perfect. As I prefaced it before, believe it or not, Virginia Woolf knew a great deal about joy.

Virginia Woolf The Voyage Out Chapter XXII

The darkness fell, but rose again, and as each day spread widely over the earth… this wish of theirs was revealed to other people, and in the process became slightly strange to themselves. Apparently it was not anything unusual that had happened; it was that they had become engaged to marry each other. The world… expressed itself glad on the whole that two people should marry, and allowed them to see that they were not expected to take part in the work which has to be done in order that the world shall go on, but might absent themselves for a time. They were accordingly left alone… driven to walk alone, and sit alone, to visit secret places where flowers had never been picked and the trees were solitary. In solitude they could express those beautiful but too vast desires which were so oddly uncomfortable to the ears of other men and women– desires for a world, such as their own world which contained two people…, where people knew each other intimately and thus judged eacdh other by what was good, and never quarrelled, because that was a waste of time.
They would talk of such questions among books, or out in the sun, or sitting in the shade of a tree undisturbed. They were no longer embarrassed, or half-choked with meaning which could not express itself; they were not afraid of each other, or, like travellers down a twisting river, dazzled with sudden beauties when the corner is turned; the unexpected happened, but even the ordinary was lovable, and in many ways preferable to the ecstatic and mysterious, for it was refreshingly solid, and called out effort, and effort under such circumstances was not effort, but delight.

One thought on “In honour of love”

  1. Beth says:

    Beautiful choice.
    (And so different from what occurred in “On Chesil Beach.”)

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