Saturday, August 9, 2008


"O it is difficult - life is very difficult. It seems right to me sometimes that we should follow our strongest feeling; but then, such feelings continually come across the ties that all our former life has made for us- the ties that have made others dependent on us- and would cut them in two. If life were quite easy and simple, as it might have been in paradise, and we could always see that one being first towards whom... I mean, if life did not make duties for us before love comes- love would be a sign that two people ought to belong to each other. But I see - I feel it is not so now: there are things we must renounce in life: some of us must resign love. Many things are difficult and dark to me; but I see one thing quite clearly- that I must not , cannot seek my own happiness by sacrificing others. Love is natural; but surely pity and faithfulness and memory are natural too. And they would live in me still, and punish me if I did not obey them. I should be haunted by the suffering I had caused. Our love would be poisoned. Don't urge me; help me- help me, because I love you."


Maggie to Stephan in George Eliot's The Mill on the Floss