The Life of Katherine Mansfield
Chapter X: White Gardenia
Chapter X: White Gardenia
“Dorian Gray had been poisoned by a book.” —The Picture of Dorian Gray.—Oscar Wilde.
To the girls who lived their circumspect existence in the chill grey of “Woodie's” boarding house, what must the invitations to No. 72 Ladbroke Grove have meant? What of romantic enchantment, what of “life” is revealed in their exotic memories of it! A world to itself, governed by its own laws; only those knowing the “Open Sesame” were admitted to its mysteries. Qualifications for initiation appear to have been “exceptional ability” and personal charm.
Kathleen Beauchamp was initiated very early in her career at Queen's. An Album entry for June 29th, 1903, gives some of the essential “ethics of living,” the understanding of which was necessary for entrance. She seems to have quickly mastered these. When she became familiar with the rites, she took for her symbol the white gardenia; and for her guide book, Oscar Wilde's The Picture of Dorian Gray. No. 72 Ladbroke Grove was the home of Walter Rippmann, German professor at Queen's—“the professor” of Kathleen Beauchamp's memory of Queen's College. Young and ardent—while most page 206 of the professors, like the domestic personnel, were aged—he took a personal interest in individual girls and their activities.
Before Kathleen entered Queen's College his house had been shared by Mrs. Grier, and Connie Grier—one of his students, a Canadian girl of the delicate “Gibson girl” type—whom he later married. During Kathleen's first years he had a young journalist and an artist living in his house. It was doubtless the artist who devised those effects which so thrilled the girls coming from their grey lodgings—effects that would have been “modern” even some thirty years later. Then, they were so new that they took the breath. The rooms were decorated in what afterward became known as “modernistic” colour and design. In the evenings they were lit by candles placed to throw cross lights—to make strange geometric patterns of shadow; and the girls came upon unexpected objects which, in that atmosphere, made their imagination leap and stumble in a new manner, while they listened to “new music,” or to an Oscar Wilde play; at the colour teas, they seem to remember—in the pink-shaded light of more candles—rose-petals scattered over the hearth. In any case, their imaginations were kindled by a series of poses and attitudes, and by the charming manner of their host who later, as they looked back, became identified in their minds with Mr. Reginald Peacock (though he was not intended as the model for that versatile gentleman).
Of course the girls not included among the elect showed a certain jealousy. They couldn't gracefully accept the implication that they were neither more page 207 intelligent nor more interesting, nor prettier than some of the others. They, too, would have liked to be taken to cafés, and invited to teas, and plays, and musicals; and when Gladys Williams was driven from the very door of Queen's College in a hansom cab they felt with satisfaction that Miss Harper, standing rigid and tight-lipped, disapproved.
Yet there was much that merited her approval. Walter Rippmann, at that time, was working on a book which later gave him no little prestige : English for Foreigners. He was using simple verses and poems to illustrate the exercises, and having seen Kathleen Beauchamp's early poetry, he asked her to write more for his book. This was her first experience in almost reaching commercial success—(for ultimately Walter Rippmann discarded her verses in favour of classic quotations). But writing was not Kathleen Beauchamp's primary interest then; so she was not discouraged. She merely was given a new incentive for writing poems, and while those particular ones never were published (though they are said to survive), her collaboration with E.K.B. on a book of child verses, after she returned to New Zealand, may have been a direct result of this reawakened interest.
Obviously it was not through his German lessons that Walter Rippmann's great influence was chiefly exerted. The verses of Richard Dehmel, which Kathleen remembered, is evidence of his taste :
“Two lovers came and hid behind a tree and put up an umbrella—then they walked away, pressed against each other. It made me think of a poem that our German professor used to read in class.page 208
” ‘Ja, das war zum letzenmal
Das wir beide, arm in arme,
Unter einem Schirm gebogen …
… Alles war zum letzenmal …'
“And I heard again his ‘sad’ voice (so beautiful it seemed, you know!) and I saw his white hand with the ring on it, press open the page.”
And Katherine's friends noticed that whenever she wanted to enact a very, very romantic part, she quoted German.
His great service to her was the essential one of imaginative liberation. He introduced her to that discriminating attitude towards experience of which Walter Pater was the hierophant—the attitude which was a revelation to youth at the turn of the nineteenth century, when the prose of the Leonardo essay seemed the ne plus ultra of timeless wisdom speaking the language of time. He introduced his circle to the critical scepticism of Wilde, the appreciations of Arthur Symons, the languid and despairing music of Ernest Dowson, the subtle simplicities of Paul Verlaine. He was the York Powell of a ladies' college. That it was Wilde who chiefly impressed them was not entirely his fault; it was inevitable that his young admirers should respond most readily to the showiest and the most specious. That is the way of youth. And if it be urged that the decadents were heady wine for adolescent girls, the reply is that if they had not been introduced to them by a brilliant Professor they would have found them—more furtively—for themselves. For the generation to which Kathleen belonged the decadents were the gateway to the imaginative life.page 209
Soon after Kathleen Beauchamp returned to England again from New Zealand she wrote an allegorical tale which she simply called A Fairy Story. It was of a boy who set out “to find the world,” and a girl who set out “to find herself,” and the Wanderer who woke her from her sweet child's dream, to give her the key to the book of knowledge. There is little doubt that the Wanderer was based on Walter Rippmann.
“They were twelve years old when the Wanderer came … and brought with him two great cases of books … the Girl, peering out of the window, heard him singing softly as he worked, ‘Here with a loaf of bread beneath the bough.’ He must be very hungry, she thought sympathetically.
“At this time she had read all Shakespeare and ‘Lycidas,’ and ‘Paradise Lost,’ and Dickens, and ‘The Lady of the Lake.’ Her mother had read to her ‘You Never Can Tell,’ ‘The Doll's House’ and ‘Aglavaine and Selysette.’
“The Boy was reading ‘What the Moon Saw,’ and worshipping the ground she trod upon.
“One afternoon the Girl walked into the Wanderer's room….
“‘Well?’ he said sharply, as the Girl stood by the door.
“‘I want to look at your books,’ said she.
“He glanced at her curiously …
“‘I'm—I'm quite exceptional,’ she said, hastily. ‘I'm very advanced.’
“‘Oh, are you?’ said the Wanderer.
“‘Don't think of what I look like; as Mr. Shaw says,“You Never Can Tell” .’
“‘Hang thee, sweet wench,’ said the Wanderer, ‘come along here—you know the “Open Sesame” and I'll show you the books.’
“And two hours later, they were both sitting on the page 210 floor—and he was reading her Omar Khayyam, and she was looking into Arthur Symons.
“Then a new life began for the Girl. She, too, weeded carrots, and ate leeks and brown bread, and talked to the Wanderer. And he told her of London, of Spain, of Paris, of Brussels, and again London.
“And he taught her his ethics of life, and that unselfishness signifies lack of Progress—and that she must avoid the Seven Deadly Virtues. And she printed a little text, and hung it above her washstand —‘The strongest man is he who stands most alone.’
“When the bracken was turning golden … the Wanderer packed his knapsack and left them.
“But he gave the Girl his books, and with them a little card bearing his name and address.
“‘When the time comes,’ he said, ‘this will always find me.’
“She did not understand, but she sewed the card inside her pocket, and kissed the Wanderer on both cheeks.
“… She had begun reading seriously….
“And the Wanderer did not forget her. He sent her a postcard of Maxim Gorki, and a little book, ‘The Virgins of the Rocks’; she did not understand it, but it gave her beautiful dreams. One night, the following summer, the Girl sat on the doorstep watching the stars, and the Boy, beside her.
“‘Boy,’ she said, ‘What are you going to do?’
“‘I am going to find the world,’ he cried…. ‘And you, Girl?’
“‘I am going to find myself,’ the Girl answered. She put her hand into her pocket, and pressed the Wanderer's little card….”
What all this reading had revealed to the eager Colonial girl is only to be discovered in her diaries of those days. Of course, her aloof air, her composure (which began now, to be studied), her withdrawn, almost haughty manner when in a group, page 211 was deceptive. Who would have guessed the fire beginning to flare fanned by the emotions which turned back deep into her? For the other girls of sixteen, the decadents may have been safe enough, deflected by ignorance, or, at most, flowering from shallowly turned soil. But in Kathleen Beauchamp nothing flowered from a shallow place : whatever mattered to her was taken in until roots touched bottom.
Partly, at least, her introduction to Wilde, and in particular to Dorian Gray with its doctrine that life was something to be consciously explored, came through her friend “Mimi.” She first lent Kathleen the book—an old number of Lippincott's Magazine—which had been lent to her by one of the teachers in the College school, with many injunctions to secrecy. From “Mimi” also came the notion of the emblem of the white gardenia. But probably it was the complete version of Dorian Gray which Kathleen's room-mate, Eileen Palliser, remembers as beneath her pillow at night and with her during the day. Eileen came upon her once, in her cubicle, reading a German book. Kathleen, a second senior, had studied German all through Queen's, and Eileen, several years younger and a junior, had only taken it for two or three terms; but she leaned over to see the book. To her surprise Kathleen snatched it away and closed it without stopping to mark the place. She merely said,“That's not for you!” But afterwards she kept all the books she was reading hidden from Eileen.
Kathleen's reading notes for that year (and for the two years following, when she was back in New page 212 Zealand) are filled with passages and epigrams copied from her reading. Wilde predominates, and his maxims were taken and absorbed into her, accepted as ethics, as the gospel of living. She said in those days,“I would rather have the highest heights and the lowest depths—anything rather than the placid middle line of life.” In her first introduction to literature, she gave herself utterly to absorbing from it what she believed was “experience of life.”
Reading Notes (1905–1907)
“To be premature is to be perfect.” —O.W.
“Greek dress was in its essence inartistic. Nothing should reveal the body but itself.” —O.W.
“Genius in a woman is the mystic laurel of Apollo springing from the soft breast of Daphne. It hastens the growing and sometimes breaks the heart from which it springs.” —M.C.
“To acknowledge the presence of fear is to give birth to failure.” —K.M.
“A man who speaks effectively through music is compelled to something more difficult than parliamentary eloquence.” —G.E.
“Any great achievement in acting or in music grows with the growth. Whenever an artist has been able to say ‘I came, I saw, I conquered,’ it has been at the end of patient practice. Genius is at first little more than a great capacity for receiving (discipline). Your muscles, your whole frame must go like a watch true, true, true, true as a hair.” —G.E.
“If any one should importune me to give a reason why I loved him, I feel it could not otherwise be explained than by making answer, ‘Because it was he; because it was I’.” —Montaigne.
“The strongest man is he who stands most alone.” —Henrik Ibsen.page 213
“Happy people are never brilliant. It implies friction.” —K.M.
“It is not naturally or generally, the happy who are the most anxious for a prolongation of the present life or for a life hereafter; it is those who have never been happy.” —J.S.M.
“… it is no unnatural part of the idea of a happy life, that life itself is to be laid down, after the best that it can give has been fully enjoyed through a long lapse of time; when all its pleasures, like those of benevolence, are familiar, and nothing untasted or unknown is left to stimulate curiosity and keep up the desire of prolonged existence.” —J.S.M.
“Push everything as far as it will go.” —O.W.
“The old desire everything—the middle-aged believe everything—the young know everything.” —O.W.
“To love madly—perhaps is not wise—yet should you love madly—it is far wiser than not to love at all.” —M.M.
“People who learn only from experience do not allow for intuition.” —A.H.H.
“No life is spoiled but one whose growth is arrested.” —O.W.
“We are not sent into the world to air our moral prejudices.” —O.W.
“If you want to mar a nature, you have merely to reform it.” —O.W.
“The only way to get rid of temptation is to yield to it.” —O.W.
“Conscience and cowardice are the same things. Conscience is the trade mark of the firm. That is all.” —O.W.
“To realise one's nature perfectly—that is what each of us is here for.” —O.W.
“I am that which is.”
“No mortal man dare lift the veil.”page 214
“He is alone of himself; to him alone do all men owe their being.” —Religion Of Beethoven; August, 1805.
“Realise your youth while you have it. Don't squander the gold of your days listening to the tedious—trying to improve the hopeless failure—or giving away your life to the ignorant, the common or the vulgar—which are the aims, the false ideals of our Age. Live! Live the wonderful life which is in you. Let nothing be lost upon you. Be always reaching…. Be afraid of nothing.” —O.W.
“Ambition is a curse if you are not … proof against everything else, unless you are willing to sacrifice yourself to your ambition.” —A Woman (K.M.).
“It cannot be possible to go through all the abandonment of music and care humanly for anything human afterward.” —A Woman.
“All musicians, no matter how insignificant, come to life emancipated of their power to take life seriously. It is not one man or woman but the complete octave of sex that they desire.” —A.W.
“You feel helpless under the yoke of creation.” —A.W.
“Nature makes such fools of us! What is the use of liking anyone if the washerwoman can do exactly the same thing? Well, this is Nature's trick to ensure population.” —A.W.
“Most women turn to salt, looking back.” —A.W.
“Big people have always entirely followed their own inclinations. Why should we remember the names of people who do what everyone does? To (be in) love with success is to be illustrious.” —A.W.
“I do not want to earn a living; I want to live.” —O.W.
“You inspect yourself from the heights of an inspiration and rebound in sickening jolts from pinnacles to the mud on the street.” —A.W.
“A woman really cannot understand music till she has the actual experience of those laboriously con- page 215 cealed things which are evidently the foundation of them all.” —A.W. (K.M.)
“The translation of an emotion into act is its death—its logical end…. But … this way isn't the act of unlawful things. It is the curiosity of our own temperament, the delicate expression of our own tendencies, the welding into an Art of act or incident some raw emotion of the blood. For we castrate our minds to the extent by which we deny our bodies.” —O.W.
March 20, 1907. Selections from Dorian Gray
“Being natural is simply a pose—and the most irritating pose I know…. I like persons with no principles better than anything else in the world.”
“The worst of having a romance of any kind is that it leaves one so unromantic.”
“Those who are faithful know only the trivial side of love; it is the faithless who know love's tragedies.”
“No influence is immoral—immoral from the scientific point of view. Nothing can cure the soul but the senses—just as nothing can cure the senses but the soul.” —O.W.
The novel, Juliet , which Kathleen Beauchamp began on May 18th, 1907, her last term at Queen's, shows this influence. She absorbed so completely what she was reading at the time; it became such a part of her, that it was inevitable she should reflect something of it, just as she reflected in all of her writing her state, her immediate attitude to life, as well as her mood of the moment.
What she was writing for herself, then, was vastly different from the sketches she wrote for publication in the College Magazine. Those, with one exception, had been stories of her New Zealand childhood. page 216 That exception was the second to be published (March, 1904), Die Einsame, unlike the others in style, with something of herself in its conception of the solitary life of the spirit, but in its form obviously influenced by her reading. Ida Baker, at the same time, had written a story “practically the same thing, but, of course, without the literary mark,” as she explained :“it was because we were so much in harmony.”
Kathleen's story was highly spoken of by Miss Bedford, the drawing instructor. In her next three, nevertheless, she returned to her childhood theme, in great contrast to the contributions which made up the rest of the magazine : what The Candid Critic, a caustic scarlet-covered junior pamphlet appearing in June, 1905, called “Odes to Spring and Fairy Tales by College Hans Andersens.” Her next published sketch (December, 1904) was Your Birthday, a sprightly but very tender study of a child. For the following half-yearly issue (July, 1905) the twenty-second year of the magazine, Kathleen Beauchamp was sub-Editor and Ida Baker, Treasurer. Kathleen's story was One Day, a day in the life of the children of her family; and, her sister says, a true picture. She had not yet mastered her material, however, and the style was artificial, though there were some amusing and several charming touches and consistent character drawing of the four children. For the next issue (December, 1905) she was Head Editor, with Francis Maurice sub-Editor. In that number, her sketch, About Pat, showed something of the perception that triumphed in her later work.page 217
She evidently had no connection with the issue of her final term (July, 1906). By that time she was writing for herself alone. She was beginning to live vividly and with new awareness, and she was putting so much of it into Juliet that the “novel” was too “advanced” to be offered to a college audience.
During the time she was writing Juliet (her last three months at Queen's) Arnold Trowell was in London giving recitals at the Bechstein Hall, before audiences that were, for the most part, very enthusiastic. He had finished his two years' study in Brussels, and had been playing on the Continent.
Kathleen herself heard him in Brussels on March 26th (1906), while she was on Easter holidays under the chaperonage of Bell Dyer. What must have been her exhilaration to sit in that audience applauding with enthusiasm the boy whom she had made her artistic counterpart during the three years since she left New Zealand? All was altered. All was different from that far-away time of her childhood when she had sat in the Sydney Street Hall in Wellington and listened to the fourteen-year-old “local prodigy.” She felt that she was a woman now. Through her reading, through glimpses of London cafés, she felt she “knew life.” How much older she thought herself than most of the girls about her! And the belief that this genius of seventeen, this young composer who could transport his audiences actually belonged to her, sent her page 218 imagination winging in the wake of his music to ecstasy.
It was about this time—when they met again—that there was a tacit agreement between them practically amounting to an engagement.
While she was in Brussels, too, she met Rudolph, upon whom she modelled the “villain” in Juliet. Rudolph was one of Arnold's musician friends—a handsome, excitable and temperamental youth. He had brusque ways, covering his supersensitiveness. It was he who gave Kathleen the cue to calling Arnold “Old Hoss,” with a clap on the shoulder (perhaps it was, too, a reminiscence of Trilby, which was a favourite book of Kathleen's at this time).
Rudolph shot himself soon afterward. Kathleen took it very much to heart. This experience of sudden death in her own world—the death of a friend of Arnold, a boy whom she had known, and who had fired her imagination—was quite another thing from “knowing life” through books. This was her first personal experience of the feeling which she later tried to convey through Laura (in The Garden Party) whose bewilderment she described in a letter :
“The diversity of life, and how we try to fit in everything, Death included. That is bewildering for a person of Laura's age. She feels things ought to happen differently. First one and then another. But life isn't like that. We haven't the ordering of it. Laura says, ‘But all these things must not happen at once.’ And Life answers, ‘Why not? How are they divided from each other?’ And they do all happen; it is inevitable.”page 219
She was too near the beginning of things, then, to be able to add:
“And it seems to me there is beauty in that inevitability.”
She met Maata again. Maata stayed in London for a short time on her way back from Paris. She came—a finished little Parisian in dress and manner.“She kept her feet as exquisitely as she did her hands,” Maata's mother said. Their meeting was rapturous and romantic. Two years later, when they both were keeping diaries (and Kathleen preserved Maata's all her life, expecting to make some use of it) she looked back longingly to that time together in London :
“In the pocket of an old coat I found one of Ariadne's gloves—a cream coloured suede glove fastening with two silver buttons. It has been there two years—but still it holds some exquisite suggestion of Carlotta (Maata)—still when I lay it against my cheek I can detect the sweet of the perfume she affected. O, Carlotta—have you remembered? We were floating down Regent Street in a hansom—on either side of us the blossoms of golden light—and ahead a little half hoop of a moon.”
When Maata had gone, Kathleen arranged to meet the Trowell brothers. This was possible by taking advantage of the permission given to girls over a certain age to go out in the company of another Queen's girl.
“I met them both (writes one of her friends) at the London Academy of Music, where Kathleen went to play in the orchestra every Friday (I believe). I thought them (the two T.'s) the most extraordinary page 220 beings I had ever met. Red-haired, pale, wearing huge black hats (a very familiar thing that, now) and smoking the longest cigarettes I had ever seen, or have.”
From that purely external picture, one can guess the importance of the two brothers in Kathleen's life at this time. They were authentic denizens of the enchanted world of Art, wearing its livery. In their company, and their genuine friendship, Kathleen was for moments made free of another kind of existence; and she was stirred far beyond anything she had known in what one of the girls called “the hot-bed of emotion” at Queen's.
Then the realisation—so evident in her journal and her “novel” of that time—began to creep over her : she did not mean to Arnold what she believed he meant to her. Yet, vividly as she forced herself to meet her experiences, she could not at once accept this appalling thing. At first it was just a shadow, reflected in her writing, but not received as reality. Two years later she still was refusing to accept it as truth, even when she wrote to Arnold in her journal a letter not to be sent :
“… O—let it remain as it is—Do not suddenly crush out this, the beautiful flower—I am afraid even while I am rejoicing …”
It did not make it any easier that she was in love with an ideal which she herself had created during those changing and emotional three years when she had not seen him, but had built up her dream through letters—so many more on her part than on his. It was not until her return to London three page 221 years later, that she was to face the real truth of the situation. Now, in Juliet, she admitted it for a moment, in fancy only to deny it later :
“‘She hates me,’ Rudolph said.
“‘I only wish she hated me,’ said David. ‘It is an impossible position—I feel as though I ought to love her … but I do not. She is too much like me. I understand her too well. We are both too moody. We both feel too much the same about everything … and so she does not attract me. Do you understand?’”
Two chapters from Juliet reflect something of what was happening then : the uneasiness, the sleeplessness of the time when she was meeting Arnold. Her room-mate remembers that she came back from those meetings in a state so highly strung that she would throw herself on the bed, weeping violently; that she talked and moaned and walked in her sleep; that she went to fortune-tellers to “try to discover the future”; that she started going to séances, which only upset her the more. One day she announced to the girls that she was “going to have a séance”; and when they prepared for the table rapping, she “went into a trance” —as one of them remembers—“and talked so wildly that we were frightened out of our wits, and had to shake her violently to bring her back to herself.”
Since Arnold had come to London, everything had subtly changed for Kathleen. It was not Arnold's coming, merely, nor Garnet's coming—then. It was that intangible shifting of relationships of which Katherine Mansfield was always so acutely aware. Everything was weaving a new page 222 pattern—and a strange light played over it—shadowed, diffused. In it they all looked different; and she, too, as she looked down upon herself, seemed strange.
Her manner toward Ida appeared abrupt to spectators. They heard her say :“Oh, I couldn't come then!” after Ida had waited for her at an appointed place. They heard her say :“Ida! Get my handkerchief from the left-hand bureau drawer!” And they heard Ida's quiet reply :“Yes, Katie darling.” Yet it was the sign that now all was accepted, the adjustment made; and that it was sometimes difficult for Kathleen to reveal herself to one who—because she loved her—could interpret the secret most poignant meaning :“I feel I have to tear a delicate veil from my heart when I speak to her; and I feel that I oughtn't to tear it. Is that nonsense?” Though she hid, at moments, behind a mask, there was the tacit acceptance, only rarely remarked as when, a dozen years later, they had discussed the inexplicable, and Katherine Mansfield,“talking it over” afterwards with herself :
“I must not forget the long talk L. M. and I had…. The marvel is that she understands. No one else on earth could understand.” (And on that same occasion)” All that week she had her little corner. ‘I may come into my little corner tonight?’ she asks timidly, and I reply—so cold, so cynical—‘If you want to.’ But what would I do if she didn't come?”
There was the wordless thing between them which they knew, and no other : that Ida, uninstructed, understood certain of Katherine's needs, as page 223 Katherine, by her very being, supplemented Ida's. The din around them, the mischances, the nervous tensions of daily living could not intrude upon the centre of peace, the “silent singing” of that which lay between.
In Queen's College days Ida was one “with whom she could be herself.” Kathleen knew (and there were times when she desperately needed to know) that no matter what could happen in her world, Ida was steadfast. They evolved between them, once, a symbol : Ida was the tall green column, and herself the live bird who rested upon it—and from it flew away—only to return before taking the new flight. Except for occasional restless periods, it was always to be so. Superficial circumstances might seem to intervene, but the intangible relationship remained—out of sight, at times—beyond reach, even—yet recognised, acknowledged, as when Katherine Mansfield wrote from Paris in 1915 :
“You sent me a letter from L. M. which was simply marvellous. She wrote, as she can, you know, of all sorts of things, grass and birds and little animals and herself and our friendship with that kind of careless, very infinite joy—There is something quite absolute in Lesley—She said at the end of a page—‘Katie, dearie—what is Eternity?’ She's about the nearest thing to eternal that I could ever imagine. I wish she were not so far away …”
The chapters of Juliet written during the last months at Queen's show not only the restlessness which Kathleen seemed impotent to control, but also the fierce rebellion which rose in her at her page 224 father's intention of taking the girls back to New Zealand, when they had finished college at the end of July, 1906; and her desperate and unavailing attempts to persuade the family to let her remain in London. That they were unable to understand the depth of her desire is not remarkable; neither is it strange that it should have seemed to her impossible to be torn from a place where she felt her whole life was centred—all her friends and her interests, and all her opportunities. She believed in herself—yet when one is young, if that belief is not supported by the belief of another, the doubt creeps in :“Can I do this thing?” So she flew to Ida, crying :“But you believe in me—don't you?”
Her father said, in bewilderment :“I hardly know the girls; I've lost them now. I'll never send the two younger children ‘home’ to be educated.”
But Kathleen, reassured, said to her room-mate :“When I get to New Zealand, I'll make myself so objectionable that they'll have to send me away.” Even then she had perception enough—penetration enough—to know the one way of escape.page break page break