TO THE LIGHTHOUSEsay’s simple certainty (and she was childlike now)that her dear Lily, her little Brisk, was a fool. Then,she remembered, she had laid her head on Mrs.Ramsay’s lap and laughed and laughed and laughed,laughed almost hysterically at the thought of Mrs.Ramsay presiding with immutable calm over des-tinies which she completely failed to understand.There she sat, simple, serious. She had recovered hersense of her now—this was the glove’s twisted fin-ger. But into what sanctuary had one penetrated?Lily Briscoe had looked up at last, and there wasMrs. Ramsay, unwitting entirely what had causedher laughter, still presiding, but now with everytrace of wilfulness abolished, and in its stead, some-thing clear as the space which the clouds at lastuncover—the little space of sky which sleeps besidethe moon.

Was it wisdom? Was it knowledge? Was it, oncemore, the deceptiveness of beauty, so that all one’sperceptions, half way to truth, were tangled in agolden mesh? or did she lock up within her somesecret which certainly Lily Briscoe believed peoplemust have for the world to go on at all? Every onecould not be as helter skelter, hand to mouth as shewas. But if they knew, could they tell one what theyknew? Sitting on the floor with her arms roundMrs. Ramsay’s knees, close as she could get, smiling78
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