[Mr. Ramsay, stumbling along a passage one darkmorning, stretched his arms out, but Mrs. Ramsayhaving died rather suddenly the night before, hisarms, though stretched out, remained empty.]IV

So with the house empty and the doors lockedand the mattresses rolled round, those stray airs, ad-vance guards of great armies, blustered in, brushedbare boards, nibbled and fanned, met nothing inbedroom or drawing-room that wholly resisted thembut only hangings that flapped, wood that creaked,the bare legs of tables, saucepans and china alreadyfurred, tarnished, cracked. What people had shedand left—a pair of shoes, a shooting cap, somefaded skirts and coats in wardrobes—those alonekept the human shape and in the emptiness in-dicated how once they were filled and animated;how once hands were busy with hooks andbuttons; how once the looking-glass had held aface; had held a world hollowed out in which afigure turned, a hand flashed, the door opened, incame children rushing and tumbling; and went outagain. Now, day after day, light turned, like aflower reflected in water, its sharp image on thewall opposite. Only the shadows of the trees, flour-194
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