He lunged towards his messmates in turn a thick slice of bread, impaled on his knife.
— That’s folk, he said very earnestly, for your book, Haines. Five lines of text and ten pages of notes about the folk and the fishgods of Dundrum. Printed by the weird sisters in the year of the big wind.
He turned to Stephen and asked in a fine puzzled voice, lifting his brows :
— Can you recall, brother, is mother Grogan’s tea and water pot spoken of in the Mabinogion or is it in the Upanishads?
— I doubt it, said Stephen gravely.
— Do you now? Buck Mulligan said in the same tone. Your reasons, pray?
— I fancy, Stephen said as he ate, it did not exist in or out of the Mabinogion. Mother Grogan was, one imagines, a kinswoman of Mary Ann.
Buck Mulligan’s face smiled with delight.
— Charming, he said in a finical sweet voice, showing his white teeth and blinking his eyes pleasantly. Do you think she was? Quite charming.
Then, suddenly overclouding all his features, he growled in a hoarsened rasping voice as he hewed again vigorously at the loaf :
— For old Mary Ann
- She doesn’t care a damn,
- But, hising up her petticoats...
The doorway was darkened by an entering form.
— The milk, sir.
— Come in, ma’am, Mulligan said. Kinch, get the jug.
An old woman came forward and stood by Stephen’s elbow.
— That’s a lovely morning, sir, she said. Glory be to God.
— To whom? Mulligan said, glancing at her. Ah, to be sure.
Stephen reached back and took the milkjug from the locker.
The islanders, Mulligan said to Haines casually, speak frequently of the collector of prepuces.
— How much, sir? asked the old woman.
— A quart, Stephen said.
He watched her pour into the measure and thence into the jug rich white