Page:Ulysses, 1922.djvu/197

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194
 

       Buck Mulligan rapped John Eglinton’s desk sharply.
        Whom do you suspect? he challenged.
        Say that he is the spurned lover in the sonnets. Once spurned twice
spurned. But the court wanton spurned him for a lord, his dearmylove.
       Love that dare not speak its name.
        As an Englishman, you mean, John sturdy Eglinton put in, he loved
a lord.
       Old wall where sudden lizards flash. At Charenton I watched them.
        It seems so, Stephen said, when he wants to do for him, and for all
other and singular uneared wombs, the holy office an ostler does for the stallion.
Maybe, like Socrates, he had a midwife to mother as he had a shrew to wife.
But she, the giglot wanton, did not break a bedvow. Two deeds are rank
in that ghost’s mind : a broken vow and the dullbrained yokel on whom her
favour has declined, deceased husband’s brother. Sweet Ann I take it, was hot
in the blood. Once a wooer twice a wooer.
       Stephen turned boldly in his chair.
        The burden of proof is with you not with me, he said, frowning. If
you deny that in the fifth scene of Hamlet he has branded her with infamy,
tell me why there is no mention of her during the thirtyfour years between
the day she married him and the day she buried him. All those women saw
their men down and under : Mary, her goodman John, Ann, her poor dear
Willun, when he went and died on her, raging that he was the first to go,
Joan, her four brothers, Judith, her husband and all her sons, Susan, her
husband too, while Susan’s daughter, Elizabeth, to use granddaddy’s words, wed
her second, having killed her first.
       O yes, mention there is. In the years when he was living richly in royal
London to pay a debt she had to borrow forty shillings from her father’s
shepherd. Explain you then. Explain the swansong too wherein he has
commended her to posterity.
       He faced their silence.
       To whom thus Eglinton :

                                             You mean the will.
              That has been explained, I believe, by jurists.
              She was entitled to her widow’s dower
              At common law. His legal knowledge was great
              Our judges tell us.