Steph's Reviews > Moments of Being

Moments of Being by Virginia Woolf
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Apr 18, 10

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Read from March 18 to April 18, 2010

p. 39-40 "Reminiscences"
What is noticeable about her, as I am come to think, is not the waste and the futile gallantry, but the niceness, born of sure judgement, with which her effort matched her aim. There was scarcely any superfluity; and it is for this reason that, past as those years are, her mark on them is ineffaceable, as though branded by the naked steel, the sharp, the pure. Living voices in many parts of the world still speak of her as of someone who is actually a fact in life. Whether she came merry, wrathful or in impulsive sympathy, it does not matter; they speak of her as of a thing that happened, recalling, as though all round her grew significant, how she stood and turned and how the bird sang loudly, or a great cloud passed across the sky. Where has she gone? What she said has never ceased. She died when she was forty-eight, and your mother (VW's sister, Vanessa) was a child of fifteen. If what I have said of her has any meaning you will believe that her death was the greatest disaster that could happen."

p. 133 "A Sketch of the Past"
Every afternoon we "went for a walk". Later these walks became a penance. Father must have one of us to go out with him, Mother insisted. Too much obsessed with his health, with his pleasures, she was too willing, as I think now, to sacrifice us to him. It was thus that she left us the legacy of his dependence, which after her death became so harsh an imposition.
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