TO THE LIGHTHOUSEflickering, she attained a dancing rhythmical move-ment, as if the pauses were one part of the rhythmand the strokes another, and all were related; andso, lightly and swiftly pausing, striking, she scoredher canvas with brown running nervous lines whichhad no sooner settled there than they enclosed (shefelt it looming out at her) a space. Down in thehollow of one wave she saw the next wave toweringhigher and higher above her. For what could bemore formidable than that space? Here she wasagain, she thought, stepping back to look at it,drawn out of gossip, out of living, out of communitywith people into the presence of this formidableancient enemy of hers—this other thing, this truth,this reality, which suddenly laid hands on her,emerged stark at the back of appearances and com-manded her attention. She was half unwilling, halfreluctant. Why always be drawn out and haledaway? Why not left in peace, to talk to Mr. Car-michael on the lawn? It was an exacting form ofintercourse anyhow. Other worshipful objects werecontent with worship; men, women, God, all let onekneel prostrate; but this form, were it only theshape of a white lamp-shade looming on a wickertable, roused one to perpetual combat, challengedone to a fight in which one was bound to be worsted.Always (it was in her nature, or in her sex, she did236
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