The terror strange children feel

“I don’t see what you mean,” said Henrietta, distracted— in fact in a quite new kind of pain. She saw only too well that this inquisition had no bearing on [her] at all, that Leopold was not even interested in hurting, and was only tweaking her petals off or her wings off with the intention of exploring himself. His dispassionateness was more dire to Henrietta than cruelty. With no banal reassuring grown-ups present, with grown-up intervention taken away, there is no limit to the terror strange children feel of each other, a terror life obscures but never ceases to justify.

— from The House in Paris, by Elizabeth Bowen

Those chosen childish children with whom he played made a crook of him, and all the time he impressed them he despised them for being impressed; he wanted to crack the world by saying some final and frightful thing.”

— from The House in Paris, by Elizabeth Bowen

A drawing from my 2010 series of Victorians; Angry boy tramples flag
Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s