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Commonplace Book

More death (and love)

And while we’re on the theme of death and the Great War, here’s Joanna Cannan in High Table:

Look on, Cynic, your dozen years, to the time when such words as these will be explained away as wartime hysteria, when such a marriage as is planned now, in this brief, pink-and-white haven, will be dissolved on the cold grounds of incompatibility – we didn’t realise what we were doing – it was a mad wartime affair. Yet can you be sure that these children of calamity, with their music and their dancing and their Cliquot and their loving, and death not screened and unlikely behind his wreathes and crosses but as everyday a thing as going out and shutting the door, did not see clearer then than now, when the curtain has rung down on their melodrama and risen on a comedy in which they never thought to play? ‘Nothing can take our love from us,’ said Lennie, and aimed his remark at honest and rude death, no need to think of time or change or satiety in those straightforward days.

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