Wandering Rocks part 1

James Joyce -- Ulysses -- Published 1922

Ulysses 10: Wandering Rocks Part 2

Miss Dunne hid the Capel street library copy of The Woman in White far back in her drawer and rolled a sheet of gaudy notepaper into her typewriter.

Too much mystery business in it. Is he in love with that one, Marion? Change it and get another by Mary Cecil Haye.

The disk shot down the groove, wobbled a while, ceased and ogled them: six.

Miss Dunne clicked on the keyboard:

-- 16 June 1904.

Five tallwhitehatted sandwichmen between Monypeny's corner and the slab where Wolfe Tone's statue was not, eeled themselves turning H. E. L. Y.'S and plodded back as they had come.

Then she stared at the large poster of Marie Kendall, charming soubrette, and, listlessly lolling, scribbled on the jotter sixteens and capital esses. Mustard hair and dauby cheeks. She's not nicelooking, is she? The way she is holding up her bit of a skirt. Wonder will that fellow be at the band tonight. If I could get that dressmaker to make a concertina skirt like Susy Nagle's. They kick out grand. Shannon and all the boatclub swells never took his eyes off her. Hope to goodness he won't keep me here till seven.

The telephone rang rudely by her ear.

-- Hello. Yes, sir. No, sir. Yes, sir. I'll ring them up after five. Only those two, sir, for Belfast and Liverpool. All right, sir. Then I can go after six if you're not back. A quarter after. Yes, sir. Twentyseven and six. I'll tell him. Yes: one, seven, six.

She scribbled three figures on an envelope.

-- Mr Boylan, Hello! That gentleman from Sport was in looking for you. Mr Lenehan, yes. He said he'll be in the Ormond at four. No, sir. Yes, sir. I'll ring them up after five.

Two pink faces turned in the flare of the tiny torch.

-- Who's that? Ned Lambert asked. Is that Crotty?

-- Ringabella and Crosshaven, a voice replied, groping for foothold.

-- Hello, Jack, is that yourself? Ned Lambert said, raising in salute his pliant lath among the flickering arches. Come on. Mind your steps there.

The vesta in the clergyman's uplifted hand consumed itself In a long soft flame and was let fall. At their feet its red speck died: and mouldy air closed round them.

-- How interesting! a refined accent said in the gloom.

-- Yes, sir, Ned Lambert said heartily. We are standing in the historic council chamber of saint Mary's abbey where silken Thomas proclaimed himself a rebel in 1534. This is the most historic spot in all Dublin. O'Madden Burke is going to write something about it one of these days. The old bank of Ireland was over the way till the time of the union and the original jews' temple was here too before they built their synagogue over in Adelaide road. You were never here before, Jack, were you?

-- No, Ned.

-- He rode down through Dame walk, the refined accent said, if my memory serves me. The mansion of the Kildares was in Thomas court.

-- That's right, Ned Lambert said. That's quite right, sir.

-- If you will be so kind then, the clergyman said, the next time to allow me perhaps .

-- Certainly, Ned Lambert said. Bring the camera whenever you like. I'll get those bags cleared away from the windows. You can take it from here or from here.

In the still faint light he moved about, tapping with his lath the piled seedbags and points of vantage on the floor.

From a long face a beard and gaze hung on a chessboard.

-- I'm deeply obliged, Mr Lambert, the clergyman said. I won't trespass on your valuable time...

-- You're welcome, sir, Ned Lambert said. Drop in whenever you like. Next week, say. Can you see?

-- Yes, yes. Good afternoon, Mr Lambert. Very pleased to have met you.

-- Pleasure is mine, sir, Ned Lambert answered.

He followed his guest to the outlet and then whirled his lath away among the pillars. With J.J. O'Molloy he came forth slowly into Mary's abbey where draymen were loading floats with sacks of carob and palmnut meal, O'Connor, Wexford.

He stood to read the card in his hand.

-- The reverend Hugh C. Love, Rathcoffey. Present address: Saint Michael's, Sallins. Nice young chap he is. He's writing a book about the Fitzgeralds he told me. He's well up in history, faith.

The young woman with slow care detached from her light skirt a clinging twig.

-- I thought you were at a new gunpowder plot, J.J. O'Molloy said.

Ned Lambert cracked his fingers in the air.

-- God, he cried. I forgot to tell him that one about the earl of Kildare after he set fire to Cashel cathedral. You know that one? I'm bloody sorry I did it, says he, but I declare to God I thought the archbishop was inside. He mightn't like it, though. What? God, I'll tell him anyhow. That was the great earl, the Fitzgerald Mor. Hot members they were all of them, the Geraldines.

The horses he passed started nervously under their slack harness. He slapped a piebald haunch quivering near him and cried:

-- Woa, sonny!

He turned to J.J. O'Molloy and asked:

-- Well, Jack. What is it? What's the trouble? Wait a while. Holdhard.

With gaping mouth and head far back he stood still and, after an instant, sneezed loudly.

-- Chow! he said. Blast you!

-- The dust from those sacks, J.J. O'Molloy said politely.

-- No, Ned Lambert gasped, I caught a... cold night before ... blast your soul... night before last... and there was a hell of a lot of draught...

He held his handkerchief ready for the coming...

-- I was... this morning... poor little... what do you call him... Chow!... Mother of Moses!

Tom Rochford took the top disk from the pile he clasped against his claret waistcoat.

-- See? he said. Say it's turn six. In here, see. Turn Now On.

He slid it into the left slot for them. It shot down the groove, wobbled a while, ceased, ogling them: six.

Lawyers of the past, haughty, pleading, beheld pass from the consolidated taxing office to Nisi Prius court Richie Goulding carrying the costbag of Goulding, Collis and Ward and heard rustling from the admiralty division of King's bench to the court of appeal an elderly female with false teeth smiling incredulously and a black silk skirt of great amplitude.

-- See? he said. See now the last one I put in is over here. Turns Over. The impact. Leverage, see?

He showed them the rising column of disks on the right.

-- Smart idea, Nosey Flynn said, snuffling. So a fellow coming in late can see what turn is on and what turns are over.

-- See? Tom Rochford said.

He slid in a disk for himself: and watched it shoot, wobble, ogle, stop: four. Turn Now On.

-- I'll see him now in the Ormond, Lenehan said, and sound him. One good turn deserves another.

-- Do, Tom Rochford said. Tell him I'm Boylan with impatience.

-- Goodnight, M'Coy said abruptly, when you two begin.

Nosey Flynn stooped towards the lever, snuffling at it.

-- But how does it work here, Tommy? he asked.

-- Tooraloo, Lenehan said, see you later.

He followed M'Coy out across the tiny square of Crampton court.

-- He's a hero, he said simply.

-- I know, M'Coy said. The drain, you mean.

-- Drain? Lenehan said. It was down a manhole.

They passed Dan Lowry's musichall where Marie Kendall, charming soubrette, smiled on them from a poster a dauby smile.

Going down the path of Sycamore street beside the Empire musichall Lenehan showed M'Coy how the whole thing was. One of those manholes like a bloody gaspipe and there was the poor devil stuck down in it half choked with sewer gas. Down went Tom Rochford anyhow, booky's vest and all, with the rope round him. And be damned but he got the rope round the poor devil and the two were hauled up.

-- The act of a hero, he said.

At the Dolphin they halted to allow the ambulance car to gallop past them for Jervis street.

-- This way, he said, walking to the right. I want to pop into Lynam's to see Sceptre's starting price. What's the time by your gold watch and chain?

M'Coy peered into Marcus Tertius Moses' sombre office, then at O'Neill's clock.

-- After three, he said. Who's riding her?

-- O. Madden, Lenehan said. And a game filly she is.

While he waited in Temple bar M'Coy dodged a banana peel with gentle pushes of his toe from the path to the gutter. Fellow might damn easy get a nasty fall there coming along tight in the dark.

The gates of the drive opened wide to give egress to the vice-regal cavalcade.

-- Even money, Lenehan said returning. I knocked against Bantam Lyons in there going to back a bloody horse someone gave him that hasn't an earthly. Through here.

They went up the steps and under Merchants' arch. A dark-backed figure scanned books on the hawker's cart.

-- There he is, Lenehan said.

-- Wonder what he is buying, M'Coy said, glancing behind.

-- Leopoldo or the Bloom is on the Rye, Lenehan said.

-- He's dead nuts on sales, M'Coy said. I was with him one day and he bought a book from an old one in Liffey street for two bob. There were fine plates in it worth double the money, the stars and the moon and comets with long tails. Astronomy it was about.

Lenehan laughed.

-- I'll tell you a damn good one about comets' tails, he said. Come over in the sun.

They crossed to the metal bridge and went along Wellington quay by the river wall.

Master Patrick Aloysius Dignam came out of Mangan's, late Fehrenbach's, carrying a pound and a half of porksteaks.

-- There was a big spread out at Glencree reformatory, Lenehan said eagerly. The annual dinner you know. Boiled shirt affair. The lord mayor was there, Val Dillon it was, and sir Charles Cameron and Dan Dawson spoke and there was music. Bartell D'Arcy sang and Benjamin Dollard.

-- I know, M'Coy broke in. My missus sang there once.

-- Did she? Lenehan said.

A card Unfurnished Apartments reappeared on the windowsash of number 7 Eccles street.

He checked his tale a moment but broke out in a wheezy laugh.

-- But wait till I tell you, he said. Delahunt of Camden street had the catering and yours truly was chief bottlewasher. Bloom and the wife were there. Lashings of stuff we put up: port wine and sherry and curaçao to which we did ample justice. Fast and furious it was. After liquids came solids. Cold joints galore and mince pies.

-- I know, M'Coy said. The year the missus was there...

Lenehan linked his arm warmly.

-- But wait till I tell you, he said. We had a midnight lunch too after all the jollification and when we sallied forth it was blue o'clock the morning after the night before. Coming home it was a gorgeous winter's night on the Featherbed Mountain. Bloom and Chris Callinan were on one side of the car and I was with the wife on the other. We started singing glees and duets: Lo, the early beam of morning. She was well primed with a good load of Delahunt's port under her bellyband. Every jolt the bloody car gave I had her bumping up against me. Hell's delights! She has a fine pair, God bless her. Like that.

He held his caved hands a cubit from him, frowning:

-- I was tucking the rug under her and settling her boa all the time. Know what I mean?

His hands moulded ample curves of air. He shut his eyes tight in delight, his body shrinking, and blew a sweet chirp from his lips.

-- The lad stood to attention anyhow, he said with a sigh. She's a gamey mare and no mistake. Bloom was pointing out all the stars and the comets in the heavens to Chris Callinan and the jarvey: the great bear and Hercules and the dragon and the whole jingbang lot. But, by God, I was lost, so to speak, in the milky way. He knows them all, faith. At last she spotted a weeny weeshy one miles away. And what star is that, Poldy? says she. By God, she had Bloom cornered. That one, is it? says Chris Callinan, sure that's only what you might call a pinprick. By God, he wasn't far wide of the mark.

Lenehan stopped and leaned on the riverwall, panting with soft laughter.

-- I'm weak, he gasped.

M'Coy's white face smiled about it at instants and grew grave. Lenehan walked on again. He lifted his yachtingcap and scratched his hindhead rapidly. He glanced sideways in the sunlight at M'Coy.

-- He's a cultured allroundman, Bloom is, he said seriously. He's not one of your common or garden... you know... There's a touch of the artist about old Bloom.

Mr Bloom turned over idly pages of The Awful Disclosures of Maria Monk, then of Aristotle's Masterpiece. Crooked botched print. Plates: infants cuddled in a ball in bloodred wombs like livers of slaughtered cows. Lots of them like that at this moment all over the world. All butting with their skulls to get out of it. Child born every minute somewhere. Mrs Purefoy.

He laid both books aside and glanced at the third: Tales of the Ghetto by Leopold von Sacher Masoch.

-- That I had, he said, pushing it by.

The shopman let two volumes fall on the counter.

-- Them are two good ones, he said.

Onions of his breath came across the counter out of his ruined mouth. He bent to make a bundle of the other books, hugged them against his unbuttoned waistcoat and bore them off behind the dingy curtain.

On O'Connell bridge many persons observed the grave deportment and gay apparel of Mr Denis J. Maginni, professor of dancing &c.

Mr Bloom, alone, looked at the titles. Fair Tyrants by James Lovebirch. Know the kind that is. Had it? Yes.

He opened it. Thought so.

A woman's voice behind the dingy curtain. Listen: The man.

No: she wouldn't like that much. Got her it once.

He read the other title: Sweets of Sin. More in her line. Let us see.

He read where his finger opened.

-- All the dollarbills her husband gave her were spent in the stores on wondrous gowns and costliest frillies. For him! For Raoul!

Yes. This. Here. Try.

-- Her mouth glued on his in a luscious voluptuous kiss while his hands felt for the opulent curves inside her déshabillé.

Yes. Take this. The end.

-- You are late, he spoke hoarsely, eyeing her with a suspicious glare. The beautiful woman threw off her sabletrimmed wrap, displaying her queenly shoulders and heaving embonpoint. An imperceptible smile played round her perfect lips as she turned to him calmly.

Mr Bloom read again: The beautiful woman.

Warmth showered gently over him, cowing his flesh. Flesh yielded amid rumpled clothes. Whites of eyes swooning up. His nostrils arched themselves for prey. Melting breast ointments (For him! For Raoul!). Armpits' oniony sweat. Fishgluey slime (her heaving embonpoint!). Feel! Press! Crushed! Sulphur dung of lions!

Young! Young!

An elderly female, no more young, left the building of the courts of chancery, king's bench, exchequer and common pleas, having heard in the lord chancellor's court the case in lunacy of Potterton, in the admiralty division the summons, exparte motion, of the owners of the Lady Cairns versus the owners of the barque Mona, in the court of appeal reservation of judgment in the case of Harvey versus the Ocean Accident and Guarantee Corporation.

Phlegmy coughs shook the air of the bookshop, bulging out the dingy curtains. The shopman's uncombed grey head came out and his unshaven reddened face, coughing. He raked his throat rudely, spat phlegm on the floor. He put his boot on what he had spat, wiping his sole along it and bent, showing a rawskinned crown, scantily haired.

Mr Bloom beheld it.

Mastering his troubled breath, he said:

-- I'll take this one.

The shopman lifted eyes bleared with old rheum.

-- Sweets of Sin, he said, tapping on it. That's a good one.

Wandering Rocks part 3

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