A PORTRAIT OF THE ARTIST AS A YOUNG MAN
shed his blood for all men they have no need of other aspersions.
Doherty's jibes flashed to and fro through the torpor of his mind and he thought without mirth of his friend's face, equine and pallid, and of his pallid hair, grained and hued like oak. He had tried to receive coldly these memories of his friend's boisterous humour, feeling that his coarseness of speech was not a blasphemy of the spirit but a coward's mask, but in the end the troop of swinish images broke down before his reserve and went trampling through his memory, followed by his laughter:
I'm the queerest young fellow that ever you heard,
My mother's a jew, my father's a bird.
With Joseph the joiner I cannot agree
So here's to disciples and Calvary!
My methods are new and are causing surprise,
To make the blind see I throw dust in their eyes, …
But the echo of his laughter had been the remembrance of Doherty, standing on the steps of his house the night before, saying:
— And on Sunday I consume the particle, Christine, semel in die. The mockery of it all! But it's for the sake of the poor aunt. God, we must be human first. Doherty meets his afflicted aunt. I am writing a mystery-playº in half an act. Scene: Heaven. Enter two bonzes from Leitrim wearing blue spectacles. From Leitrim! “What was it at all? Was it an electric light or the aurora borealis?” “That was himself.” “Glory be to God! It is the grandest thing I ever saw”. I think that's |aaa| lovely touch. The mockery of it! Ireland secretes priests: that's my new phrase. I must go. A woman waits for me. God, the humanity of Whitman! I contain all. I embrace all. Farewell. Did you notice Yeats's new touch with the hand up. It's the Roman salute. Salve! Pip, pip! O, a lovely mummer! Dedalus, we must retire to the tower, you and I. Our lives are precious. I'll try to touch the aunt. We are the superartistsº. Dedalus and Doherty have left Ireland for the Omphalos —
The rank smell of fried herrings filled the kitchen and the bare table was strewn with greasy plates |aon toa| which |alaya| glutinous fishbonesº and crusts |awerea| stuck by a congealing white sauce. Clammy knives and forks were abandoned here and there. A big soot-coatedº kettle sat in which had been drained of the last dregs of shell cocoa, sat in the midst of the disorder beside a large jam-jar still half-fullº of the oatmeal water which had served for milk. Under the table the tortoiseshell cat was chewing ravenously at a mess of |afishguts charred fishheadsa| and eggshells heaped on a square of brown paper.
His mother, flushed and red-eyed sat by the range. Stephen, weary of the strife, lean of tongues, leaned against the japanned wall of the fireplace. Noises and cries and laughter echoed in the narrow yard: and from time to time a fl nose was flattened against the window pane, fingers tapped mockingly and a young voice, faint and high in the dim evening, asked if the genius had finished his phrenology.
— It is all over those books you read. I knew you would lose your faith. I'll burn every one of them. —
— If you had not lost |athe youra| faith — said Stephen — you would burn me along with the books —