Ssh! Sister, speak!


(Eyeless, in nun's white habit, coif and hugewinged wimple, softly, with remote eyes.) Tranquilla convent. Sister Agatha."

"Mount Carmel."

"The apparitions of Knock and Lourdes."

"No more desire. (She reclines her head, sighing.) Only the ethereal. Where dreamy creamy gull waves o'er the waters dull."

"(Bloom half rises. His back trouserbutton snaps.)



(Two sluts of the Coombe dance rainily by, shawled, yelling flatly.)


O Leopold lost the pin of his drawers
He didn't know what to do,
To keep it up,
To keep it up."


(Coldly.) You have broken the spell. The last straw. If there were only ethereal where would you all be, postulants and novices? Shy but willing, like an ass pissing.


(Their silverfoil of leaves precipitating, their skinny arms aging and swaying.) Deciduously!" (U15. 3448)

(Her features hardening, gropes in the folds of her habit.) Sacrilege! To attempt my virtue! (A large moist stain appears on her robe.) Sully my innocence! You are not fit to touch the garment of a pure woman. (She clutches again in her robe.) Wait, Satan. You'll sing no more lovesongs. Amen. Amen. Amen. Amen. (She draws a poniard and, clad in the sheathmail of an elected knight of nine, strikes at his loins.) Nekum!"


(Starts up, seizes her hand.) Hoy! Nebrakada! Cat o' nine lives! Fair play, madam. No pruningknife. The fox and the grapes, is it?"

"What do you lack with your barbed wire? Crucifix not thick enough? (He clutches her veil.) A holy abbot you want or Brophy, the lame gardener, or the spoutless statue of the watercarrier, or good Mother Alphonsus, eh Reynard?


(With a cry flees from him unveiled, her plaster cast cracking, a cloud of stench escaping from the cracks.) Poli...!


(calls after her) As if you didn't get it on the double yourselves. No jerks and multiple mucosities all over you. I tried it. Your strength our weakness. What's our studfee? What will you pay on the nail? You fee mendancers on the Riviera, I read. (the fleeing nymph raises a keen) Eh? I have sixteen years of black slave labour behind me. And would a jury give me five shillings alimony tomorrow, eh? Fool someone else, not me. (he sniffs) Rut. Onions. Stale. Sulphur. Grease."

"(The figure of Bella Cohen stands before him.)


You'll know me the next time.


(Composed, regards her.) Passée. Mutton dressed as lamb. Long in the tooth and superfluous hairs. A raw onion the last thing at night would benefit your complexion."


[Note: this is not a photo of Bella Cohen]
"And take some double chin drill. Your eyes are as vapid as the glass eyes of your stuffed fox. They have the dimensions of your other features, that's all."


An ad to cure a double chin from Pearson's Magazine (1905)
"I'm not a triple screw propeller."


(Contemptuously.) You're not game, in fact. (Her sowcunt barks.) Fbhracht!


(Contemptuously.) Clean your nailless middle finger first, your bully's cold spunk is dripping from your cockscomb. Take a handful of hay and wipe yourself.


I know you, canvasser! Dead cod!


I saw him, kipkeeper! Pox and gleet vendor!"


(Turns to the piano.) Which of you was playing the dead march from Saul?


Me. Mind your cornflowers."

"(She darts to the piano and bangs chords on it with crossed arms.) The cat's ramble through the slag. (She glances back.) Eh? Who's making love to my sweeties? (She darts back to the table.) What's yours is mine and what's mine is my own.

(Kitty, disconcerted, coats her teeth with the silver paper. Bloom approaches Zoe.)"


(Gently.) Give me back that potato, will you?


Forfeits, a fine thing and a superfine thing.


(With feeling.) It is nothing, but still a relic of poor mamma.


Give a thing and take it back
God'll ask you where is that
You'll say you don't know
God'll send you down below."

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