Take down Volume II, the last years when she was happy.
The tiny woman in the pince-nez, the veiled black hat,
black gloves, and a smartly tailored suit stares out at the
reader. Her thoughts, too, were veiled: from her husband,
her congregation, her readers, who expected only sunshine
from their favourite writer. Only in her journals could she
let off steam, as if she were a volcano about to erupt, words
flowing from her pen like molten tears.
She wished for an hour out of the past, a time when she
was happy but didn’t know it. She wished to go back to
Park Corner, when she was still young and hopeful: before
her father died, her husband fell into madness, Frede died,
and the world changed.
She wrote about that hour out of the past, turning back
to a time when the world seemed safe, before motor cars,
world wars, madness, death. She gave her readers marriage
in the final chapter, the happy-ever-after ending.
She wrote about marriage failures, war, despair, madness,
death. The anger we carry in our bones because life cheats
us, steals what we hold most dear, gives us back our dreams
with tarnished corners. The secrets we never reveal.