He had spoken himself into boldness. Stephen, shielding the gaping wounds which the words had left in his heart, said very coldly:
- I am not thinking of the offence to my mother.
- Of what then? Buck Mulligan asked.
- Of the offence to me, Stephen answered.
Buck Mulligan swung round on his heel.
- O, an impossible person! he exclaimed.
He walked off quickly round the parapet. Stephen stood at his post, gazing over the calm sea towards the headland. Sea and headland now grew dim. Pulses were beating in his eyes, veiling their sight, and he felt the fever of his cheeks.
A voice within the tower called loudly:
- Are you up there, Mulligan?
- I'm coming, Buck Mulligan answered.
He turned towards Stephen and said:
- Look at the sea. What does it care about offences?" (U1.212)
His head halted again for a moment at the top of the staircase, level with the roof:
- Don't mope over it all day, he said. I'm inconsequent." (U1.231)
His head vanished but the drone of his descending voice boomed out of the stairhead:
- And no more turn aside and brood
Upon love's bitter mystery
For Fergus rules the brazen cars." (U1.235)
A cloud began to cover the sun slowly, wholly, shadowing the bay in deeper green. It lay beneath him, a bowl of bitter waters. Fergus' song: I sang it alone in the house, holding down the long dark chords. Her door was open: she wanted to hear my music. Silent with awe and pity I went to her bedside. She was crying in her wretched bed. For those words, Stephen: love's bitter mystery." (U1.242)
Her secrets: old featherfans, tasselled dancecards powdered with musk, a gaud of amber beads in her locked drawer." (U1.254)
I am the boy
That can enjoy
Phantasmal mirth, folded away: musk perfumed.
And no more turn aside and brood.
Folded away in the memory of nature with her toys. Memories beset his brooding brain. Her glass of water from the kitchen tap when she had approached the sacrament. A cored apple, filled with brown sugar, roasting for her at the hob on a dark autumn evening. ([U1.257])
No, mother! Let me be and let me live.
— Kinch ahoy!
Buck Mulligan's voice sang from within the tower. It came nearer up the staircase, calling again. Stephen, still trembling at his soul's cry, heard warm running sunlight and in the air behind him friendly words.
— Dedalus, come down, like a good mosey. Breakfast is ready. Haines is apologising for waking us last night. It's all right.
— I'm coming, Stephen said, turning.
— Do, for Jesus' sake, Buck Mulligan said. For my sake and for all our sakes.
His head disappeared and reappeared.
—I told him your symbol of Irish art. He says it's very clever. Touch him for a quid, will you? A guinea, I mean." (U1.278)
— The school kip? Buck Mulligan said. How much? Four quid? Lend us one.
— If you want it, Stephen said." (U1.292)
He flung up his hands and tramped down the stone stairs, singing out of tune with a Cockney accent:
— O, won't we have a merry time,
Drinking whisky, beer and wine!
O, won't we have a merry time
On coronation day!
Warm sunshine merrying over the sea. The nickel shavingbowl shone, forgotten, on the parapet. Why should I bring it down? Or leave it there all day, forgotten friendship?" (U1.297)
In the gloomy domed livingroom of the tower Buck Mulligan's gowned form moved briskly to and fro about the hearth, hiding and revealing its yellow glow." (U1.310)
Clongowes Wood S.J. is a boy's preparatory school in Co. Kildare. Both James Joyce and Stephen Dedalus attended it.