I am 50 pages into Wuthering Heights now, and while I'm not loving it, I certainly don't dislike it. I've pretty much adjusted now to the odd phrasings and syntax of that era, and am starting to be able to overlook the Victorian tendency to histrionics and hyperbole. The story thus far is intriguing, although Catherine is the only primary character for whom I can muster much sympathy. There is some very evocative writing; "..
for the whole hill-back was one billowy, white ocean; the swells and falls not indicating corresponding rises and depressions in the ground: many pits, at least, were filled to a level; and entire ranges of mounds, the refuse of the quarries, blotted from the chart which my yesterday’s walk left pictured in my mind."
And even some humor;" He fixed his eye on me longer than I cared to return the stare, for fear I might be tempted either to box his ears or render my hilarity audible. I began to feel unmistakably out of place in that pleasant family circle. The dismal spiritual atmosphere overcame, and more than neutralised, the glowing physical comforts round me; and I resolved to be cautious how I ventured under those rafters a third time."
And, describing Joseph; "He was, and is yet most likely, the wearisomest self-righteous Pharisee that ever ransacked a Bible to rake the promises to himself and fling the curses to his neighbours."
While at my dad's over the weekend, I found a copy of this poem that I had set to music for my GCSE coursework. It reminded me that I had completely forgotten about the poetry of Emily Bronte - which is strange as I was completely obsessed for well over 18 months around my GCSE time.
Anyway - it was obviously a favourite, so I thought I would share it with you, unfortunately I can't read it without hearing my tune now though!
Come, Walk with Me
Come, walk with me,
There's only thee
To bless my spirit now -
We used to love on winter nights
To wander through the snow;
Can we not woo back old delights?
The clouds rush dark and wild
They fleck with shade our mountain heights
The same as long ago
And on the horizon rest at last
In looming masses piled;
While moonbeams flash and fly so fast
We scarce can say they smiled -
Come walk with me, come walk with me;
We were not once so few
But Death has stolen our company
As sunshine steals the dew -
He took them one by one and we
Are left the only two;
So closer would my feelings twine
Because they have no stay but thine -
'Nay call me not - it may not be
Is human love so true?
Can Friendship's flower droop on for years
And then revive anew?
No, though the soil be wet with tears,
How fair soe'er it grew
The vital sap once perished
Will never flow again
And surer than that dwelling dread,
The narrow dungeon of the dead
Time parts the hearts of men -'