Page:A chambermaid's diary.djvu/441

From Wikisource
Jump to navigation Jump to search
This page needs to be proofread.

uld have liked

to speak consoling \ords to Madame, whose dejected attitude it gave me pain to see. But this impression of solidarity or of servitude quickly vanished.

In crime there is something violent, solemn, justiciary, religious, -which frightens me, to be sure, but which also leaves in me — how shall I ex- press it? — a feeling of admiration. No, not of admiration, ^ince admiration is a moral feeling, a spiritual excitement, whereas that which I feel in- fluences and excites only my flesh. It is like a brutal shock throughout my physical being, at once painful and delicious, — a sorrowful and swooning rape of my sex. It is curious, doubtless it is peculiar, perhaps it is horrible, — and I cannot ex- plain the real cause of these strange and powerful sensations, — but in me every crime, especially murder, has secret relationships with love. Yes, indeed! A fine crime takes hold of me just as a fine man does.

I must say that further reflection suddenly trans- formed into a hilarious gaiety, a childish content, that grave, atrocious, and powerful enjoyment of crime which succeeded the impulse to pity that at first so inappropriately startled my heart. I thought :

'< Here are two beings who live like