Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Ch. 19 Exerpt of Jane Eyre


Mr. Rochester, under disguise of a gypsy woman, tells Jane her fortune:

"Your fortune is yet doubtful: when I examined your face, one trait contradicted another. Chance has meted you a measure of happiness: that I know. I knew it before I came here this evening. She has laid it carefully on one side for you. I saw her do it. It depends on yourself to stretch out your hand, and take it up: but whether you will do so, is the problem I study. Kneel again on the rug."
"Don't keep me long; the fire scorches me."
I knelt. She did not stoop towards me, but only gazed, leaning back in her chair. She began muttering,-
"The flame flickers in the eye; the eye shines like dew; it looks soft and full of feeling; it smiles at my jargon: it is susceptible; impression follows impression through its clear sphere; where it ceases to smile, it is sad; an unconscious lassitude weighs on the lid: that signifies melancholy resulting from loneliness. It turns from me; it will not suffer farther scrutiny; it seems to deny by a mocking glance, the truth of the discoveries I have already made, -to disown the charge both of sensibility and chagrin: its pride and reserve only confirm me of my opinion. The eye is favorable.
"As to the mouth, it delights at times in laughter; it is disposed to impart all that the brain conceives; though I daresay it would be silent on much the heart experiences. Mobile and flexible, it was never intended to be compressed in the eternal silence of solitude: it is a mouth which should speak much and smile often, and have human affection for its interlocutor. That feature too is propitious.
"I see no enemy to a fortunate issue but in the brow; and that brow professes to say, - 'I can live alone, if self-respect and circumstances require me so to do. I need not sell my soul to buy bliss. I have an inward treasure, born with me, which can keep me alive if all extraneous delights should be withheld; or offered only at a price I cannot afford to give.' The forehead declares, 'Reason sits firm and holds the reins, and she will not let the feelings burst away and hurry her to wild chasms. The passions may rage furiously, like true heathens, as they are; and the desires may imagine all sorts of vain things: but judgement shall still have the last word in every argument, and the casting vote in every decision. Strong wind, earthquake-shock, and fire may pass by: but I shall follow the guiding of that still small voice which interprets the dictates of conscience.'
"Well said, forehead; your declaration shall be respected. I have formed my plans - right plans I deem them-and in them I have attended to the claims of conscience, the counsels of reason. I know how soon youth would fade and bloom perish, if, in the cup of bliss offered, but on dreg of shame, or one flavour of remorse were detected; and I do not want sacrifice, sorrow, dissolution - such is not my taste. I wish to foster, not to blight - to earn gratitude, not to wring tears of blood - no, nor of brine: my harvest must be in smiles in endearments, in sweet - That will do. I think I rave in a kind of exquisite delirium. I should wish now to protract this moment ad infinitum; but I dare not. So far I have governed myself thoroughly. I have acted as I inwardly swore I would act; but farther might try me beyond my strength. Rise, Miss Eyre: leave me; 'the play is played out.'"



Saturday, July 16, 2011

A Miss Eyre

How can I dedicate a post to Swiss Family Robinson (a book I loved till it doubled in length and improbability) when such a book as Jane Eyre now joins my "finished reading" list. My only regret? That I had gone through it so quickly. If you could only see the hard copy of my book you would see how many pages are folded over, indicating where my favorite quotes lay hidden. From some of those pages I will give an excerpt, in hopes of sharing the details of such a simple, unlikely and epic character who gives reality such inspiration.

Waterhouse

"Anybody may blame me who likes, when I add further, that, now and then, when I took a walk by myself in the grounds; when I went down to the gates and looked through them along the road; ... I climbed the three staircases, raised the trap-door of the attic, and having reached the leads, looked out afar over sequestered field and hill, and along dim sky-line -- that then I longed for a power of vision which might overpass that limit; which might reach the busy world, towns, regions full of life I had heard of but never seen; that then I desired more of practical experience than I possessed; more of intercourse with my kind, of acquaintance with variety of character, than was here within my reach. I valued what was good in Mrs. Fairfax and what was good in Adele; but I believed in the existence of other and more vivid kinds of goodness, and what I believed in I wished to behold.
Who blames me? Many, no doubt; and I shall be called discontented. I could not help it: restlessness was in my nature; it agitated me to pain sometimes. Then my sole relief was to walk along the corridor of the third story, backwards and forwards, safe in the silence and solitude of the spot, and allow my mind's eye to dwell on whatever bright visions rose before it-and, certainly, they were many and glowing; to let my heart be heaved by the exultant movement, which, while it swelled it in trouble, expanded it with life; and, best of all, to open my inward ear to a tale that was never ended -a tale my imagination created, and narrated continuously; quickened with all of incident, life, fire, feeling, that I desired and had not in my actual existence.
It is in vain to say human beings ought to be satisfied with tranquillity: they must have action; and they will make it if they cannot find it. Millions are condemned to a stiller doom than mine, and millions are in silent revolt against their lot. ... - to slip again over my faculties the viewless fetters of an uniform and too still existence; of an existence whose very privileges of security and ease I was becoming incapable of appreciating. What good it would have done me at that time to have been tossed in the storms of an uncertain struggling life, and to have been taught by rough and bitter experience to long for the calm amidst which I now repined!"

After encountering Mr. Rochester for the first time in the woods...

"I took up my muff and walked on. The incident occurred and was gone for me: it was an incident of no moment, no romance, no interest, in a sense; yet it marked with change one single hour of a monotonous life. My help had been needed and claimed; I had given it: I was pleased to have done something; trivial, transitory though the deed was, it was yet an active thing, and I was weary of an existence all passive. The new face, too, was like a new picture introduced to the gallery of memory; and it was dissimilar to all the others hanging there: firstly, because it was masculine; and, secondly, because it was dark, strong and stern. I had it still before me when I entered Hay, and slipped the letter into the post-office; I saw it as I walked fast down hill all the way home. when I came to the stile, I stopped a minute, looked round and listened, with an idea that  a horse's hoofs might ring on the causeway again, and that a rider in a cloak, and a Gytrash-like Newfoundland dog, might be again apparent: I saw only the hedge and a pollard willow before me, rising up still and straight to meet the moonbeams; I heard only the faintest waft of wind roaming fitful among the trees round Thornfield, a mile distant; and when I glanced down on the direction of the murmur, my eye, traversing the hall-front, caught a light kindling in a window: it reminded me that I was late, and I hurried on."

-exerpt from Chapter 12


Jane Eyre has certainly been my friend these past short weeks and I am sorry that I am not able to journey any further with her. And how could I not! For she addressed me so frequently in the sharing of her heart; "dear reader". How considerate :) But another factor played in me feeling the growth of friendship with my heart and another's, for this book has tied me to its other friends; my grandmother, my mom, Mary and my sisters (even if all of them have not read it I saw some Jane in each of them). I am happy to be able to gush over the well loved paragraphs with these women :).

To my own reader, read this book and join my opinion and the opinion of the women I listed that the book is better than all the movie versions combined. 



Monday, July 4, 2011

Done and Done

I have been victorious and then beat. The victorious? Saturday I annhialated Swiss Family Robinson with the ferver of a student who's life and future depended on it. The book will receive a probable post since it took up three months of this year but it will not be this post (Aren't you excited? Hahaha). Almost as soon as I finished it I turned my attention to A Room With A View that was completed in the simplest manner of a simple read during a gorgeous canyon rain fall. It was pleasently and epicly simple. In two days time I had knocked out two books and had just enough daylight on Sunday to leave the condo under the cover of lightened rain clouds and take with me the treasure I had been committed to working towards since March. Within the first few chapters of my third book of the week, and with the help of each of my several romantic Oak Creek settings, I concluded that Jane Eyre and I were going to be very good friends for the upcoming days of our acquaintence. She may even be my best friend. Who knows. We'll see how desperate I get.
Being beat? It's odd. I feel as though I've lived several months within these past couple days, simply because I was enwrapped in other worlds who's time travelled much faster than mine. Slightly discouraging when I closed each binding for the last time to find that my world was just where I left it. I had experienced a ridiculous and unlikely survival and thriving adventure on a desert island with a Swiss family and all their ingenious and improbable luck. With that I still had time to journey to Italy and England to go through a season of love with some slightly ridiculous/slightly likeable english characters. All very busy at a stand still. How happy am I to be able to dive into a world where such an admirable character as Jane Eyre resides and narrates! Yes, we shall be very good friends indeed.

On a national note...

bing.com's photo

- Happy 4th of July!!!! God bless America :) Oh precious country of mine





Friday, July 1, 2011

Escapé!!


2010's 4th of July
My favorite holiday has come full circle and I find myself, once again, preparing to escape the Phoenix heat for a number of days. I look forward to this week as if it were a chance to regain all my sanity that was lost here and there over the year. Is life so crazy? Not really. I simply suck at keeping my head on straight no matter the circumstance, blessing or trial. So off I will go to be quiet, be honest with God and catch up on all that we haven't discussed yet (things get put on the back burner). 

Oh yeah. And I also plan to do a lot of this whimsical lying on the forest floor/creek rocks. Sometimes the canyon's timeless qualities make you so acutely aware of time's travel outside of its safe haven walls that it's all you can do to process all that it brought about or took away. Going there is therapeutic, I promise (despite the depressing picture I'm painting). 
If you couldn't tell God's direction in my life is still slightly fuzzy and I struggle to not take it personally that He hasn't just sent me a vision yet. Am I expecting a vision? No, not really. I'm just getting lazy in what feels like a guessing game now. So I intend to simply enjoy Him this week and all His peace, love and adventure. The lack of these beautiful four ladies will also produce the above painting for me. Their absence is always felt when going to Junipine without them.


Regardless of the lack of Kinkel cousins, a decided future plan and the interruption of coming home during the week to work, I am so looking forward to immersing myself in my favorite time of year in my favorite place on earth. Warm enough to crave the creek's freezing temperatures... days long enough to spend their entirety adventuring, creek hiking and reading in bare feet... and always the endless supply of chips and salsa, watermelon, blueberries, summer dinners, classic movies and family memories. I will also be a reading MACHINE. Unfortunately Swiss Family Robinson still haunts my reading list but by this weekend I am determined to see my bookmark absent from its 433 tiny print pages.
It and A Room with a View (which makes me long for a tourists occupation in Italy) will be checked off my list, put back on my shelf and returned to my sister. Jane Eyre here I come! How timely your arrival will be :)


PS: Smith girls, if you're in the neighborhood come by! I'd also like the go back to Lowell Observatory. Flagstaff trip, anyone?