(The Mabbot street entrance of nighttown, before which stretches an uncobbled
tramsiding set with skeleton tracks, red and green will-o’-the-wisps and
danger signals. Rows of flimsy houses with gaping doors. Rare lamps
with faint rainbow fans. Round Rabaiotti’s halted ice gondola stunted
men and women squabble. They grab wafers between which are wedged
lumps of coal and copper snow. Sucking, they scatter slowly. Children.
The swancomb of the gondola, highreared, forges on through the murk,
white and blue under a lighthouse. Whistles call and answer.)
Wait, my love, and I’ll be with you.
Round behind the stable.
(A deafmute idiot with goggle eyes, his shapeless mouth dribbling, jerks past,
shaken in Saint Vitus’ dance. A chain of children’s hands imprisons
(Lifts a palsied left arm and gurgles.) Grhahute!
Where’s the great light?