Supposing, said Trellis with a long chuckle, that a streetwalker makes £20,000 from her trade, saves it up over a period of 50 years, repents in her old age and builds a church with the money? Is it a church within the meaning of the act or what is it? Is it a brothel? Tainted money, I mean. Is it tainted subjectively or is it only unclean to those who know the commodity that was traded for it?
Who but Finn could burst God with the power of a breath whistled from his tooth-gap without a ceasing or a stop from the low murmuring of melodious poetry at the same time? Who but Finn?
- Where is the man, said Trellis horizontally, that is going to tell me that good can exist side by side with good? Good and evil are complementary terms. You cannot have one without the other. Each gets its force by reason of the other and would be meaningless without the other. There was no good in the Garden till the serpent came, only negation and bathos. Therefore the devil created good.
|Where is the man, said Trellis horizontally, that is goig to tell me that good can exist side by side with good? Good and eveil are complementary terms. You cannot have one without the other. Each gets its force by reason of the other and would be meaningless without the other. There was no good in the Garden till the serpent came, only negation and bathos. Therefore the devil created good.|
‘At night we would gather in the bunkhouse with our porter and all our orders, cigarettes and plenty there on the cheffonier to be taken and no questions asked, schoolmarms and saloongirls and little orange maids skivvying there in the galley and as geney as you like for the first man that takes it into his head to play ball know what I mean? That was the place to be now.’
‘I’m no nance and I’m not fussy when it comes to the hard stuff, but damn it all, I draw the line when it comes to carrying off a batch of orange women and a couple of thousand steers, by God’
‘[…] night, our bullet-pierced hats on our bowed heads and our empty six-guns dangling at our hips. If it wasn’t that our orange skivvies were waiting for us as plump and as gamey as be damned when we got the length, we might have shot up Ringsend Saloon or lynched a spook offa the arm of a tree or something.’
‘Some of the stuff I've heard in my time, said Shanahan, is no joke to play for the man that has two hands. It was stuff of the best make I don’t doubt, classical tack and all the rest of it, but by God it gave me a pain in my bandbox. It hurt my head far worse than a pint of whiskey.’
‘But there’s good craic in that when you get in on it, explained Lamont, understand it once and you’ll never have anything else. You have to get used to it, you know, take it easy. You can’t swallow it like a drink. It has to be chewed by the teeth. Look at it like this crust, say.’
The Poor Mouth (1964) [Bonapart’s hangover:] If the bare truth be told, I did not prosper very well. My senses went astray, evidently. Misadventure fell on my misfortune, a further misadventure fell on that misadventure and before long the misadventures were falling thickly on the first misfortune and on myself. Then a shower of misfortunes fell on the misadventures, heavy misadventures fell on the misfortunes after that and finally one great brown misadventure came upon everything, quenching the light and stopping the course of life. I did not feel anything for a long while; I did not see anything, neither did I hear a sound. Unknown to me, the earth was revolving on its course through the firmament. It was a week before I felt that a stir of life was still within me and a fortnight before I was completely certain that I was alive. A half-year went by before I had recovered fully from the ill-health which that night’s business had bestowed on me, God give us all grace! I did not notice the second day of the feis. (60-61; Kennelly, op. cit., 1996, p.185.)
The Poor Mouth [An Beal Bocht] (Irish orig. 1941; trans. 1964): ‘In my youth we always had a bad smell in our house. Sometimes it was so bad that I asked my mother to send me to school, even though I could not walk correctly. Passers-by neither stopped nor even walked when in the vicinity of our house but raced past the door and never ceased until they were half a mile from the bad smell. There was another house two hundred yards down the road from us and one day when our smell was extremely bad the folks there cleared out, went to America and never returned. It was stated that they told people in that place that Ireland was a fine country but that the air was too strong there. Alas! there was never any air in our house.’ (p.22.) ‘Ambrose was an odd pig and I do not think that his like will be there again. Good luck to him if he be alive in another world today!’ (Ibid., p.28.)
At Swim-Two-Birds (1939)