The Moon and Sixpence / W. Somerset Maugham

 

 

어릴 때 줄거리 듣고는 이거 완전 미친놈 아냐??? 그랬는데 커서 보니 단란한 행복이고 뭐고 다 내팽개치고 낭만 찾아 떠나는 이야기가 꽤... 와닿네요...?? 평범한 백면서생이었던 나도 나중에 주변 사람들의 인생을 파탄내 놓고 오늘부터 웹소설 작가 하겠다고 그래도 괜찮은 거지?? 그거 누구나 다 느끼는 감정인 거지?? 그렇다고 딱히 20세기 불란서 남자의 삶을 이해하고 연민할 생각은 없다만... 그런 게 인생이지.. 하면서 재밌게 읽었다. 르픽 씨가 집 나간 이유 밝힌 뒤부터는 같은 이야기가 계속 반복되기 때문에 중반부부터의 이야기는 딱히 서사적으로 가치 있다고 느끼진 않았지만.

요새 달러값 올라서 킨들 책도 못 사고 그냥 묵혀만 두고 있다. 배터리 아까우니까 달러 값 좀 내려주세요~~~★ 

 

 

Dr. Weitbrecht-Rotholz belongs to that school of historians which believes that human nature is not only about as bad as it can be, but a great deal worse; and certainly the reader is safer of entertainment in their hands than in those of the writers who take a malicious pleasure in representing the great figures of romance as patterns of the domestic virtues.

 

 

They remember that they too trod down a sated generation, with just such clamor and with just such scorn, and they foresee that these brave torch-bearers will presently yield their place also. There is no last word. The new evangel was old when Nineveh reared her greatness to the sky. These gallant words which seem so novel to those that speak them were said in accents scarcely changed a hundred times before. The pendulum swings backwards and forwards. The circle is ever travelled anew.

 

 

 

Then we would talk of agents and the offers they had obtained for us; of editors and the sort of contributions they welcomed, how much they paid a thousand, and whether they paid promptly or otherwise. To me it was all very romantic. It gave me an intimate sense of being a member of some mystic brotherhood.

 

 

 

“Why do nice women marry dull men?” “Because intelligent men won’t marry nice women.” I could not think of any retort to this, so I asked if Mrs. Strickland had children.

 

 

 

It was the kind of party which makes you wonder why the hostess has troubled to bid her guests, and why the guests have troubled to come. There were ten people. They met with indifference, and would part with relief.

 

 

 

he had no eccentricity even, to take him out of the common run; he was just a good, dull, honest, plain man. One would admire his excellent qualities, but avoid his company. He was null. He was probably a worthy member of society, a good husband and father, an honest broker; but there was no reason to waste one’s time over him.

 

 

 

That must be the story of innumerable couples, and the pattern of life it offers has a homely grace. It reminds you of a placid rivulet, meandering smoothly through green pastures and shaded by pleasant trees, till at last it falls into the vasty sea; but the sea is so calm, so silent, so indifferent, that you are troubled suddenly by a vague uneasiness.

 

 

 

“But aren’t you fond of them? They’re such awfully nice kids. Do you mean to say you don’t want to have anything more to do with them?” “I liked them all right when they were kids, but now they’re growing up I haven’t got any particular feeling for them.” “It’s just inhuman.” “I dare say.” “You don’t seem in the least ashamed.” “I’m not.”

 

 

 

“What poor minds women have got! Love. It’s always love. They think a man leaves only because he wants others. Do you think I should be such a fool as to do what I’ve done for a woman?”

 

 

 

“Do you think it’s likely that a man will do any good when he starts at your age? Most men begin painting at eighteen.” “I can learn quicker than I could when I was eighteen.” “What makes you think you have any talent?” He did not answer for a minute. His gaze rested on the passing throng, but I do not think he saw it. His answer was no answer. “I’ve got to paint.” “Aren’t you taking an awful chance?” He looked at me. His eyes had something strange in them, so that I felt rather uncomfortable.

 

 

 

“I tell you I’ve got to paint. I can’t help myself. When a man falls into the water it doesn’t matter how he swims, well or badly: he’s got to get out or else he’ll drown.” There was real passion in his voice, and in spite of myself I was impressed. I seemed to feel in him some vehement power that was struggling within him; it gave me the sensation of something very strong, overmastering, that held him, as it were, against his will. I could not understand. He seemed really to be possessed of a devil, and I felt that it might suddenly turn and rend him.

 

 

 

“Yes. The blighter came round this morning—the master, you know; when he saw my drawing he just raised his eyebrows and walked on.” Strickland chuckled. He did not seem discouraged. He was independent of the opinion of his fellows. And it was just that which had most disconcerted me in my dealings with him. When people say they do not care what others think of them, for the most part they deceive themselves.

 

 

 

It is not difficult to be unconventional in the eyes of the world when your unconventionality is but the convention of your set. It affords you then an inordinate amount of self-esteem. You have the self-satisfaction of courage without the inconvenience of danger. But the desire for approbation is perhaps the most deeply seated instinct of civilised man.

 

 

 

“Look here, if everyone acted like you, the world couldn’t go on.” “That’s a damned silly thing to say. Everyone doesn’t want to act like me. The great majority are perfectly content to do the ordinary thing.”

 

 

 

“As long as I thought he’d run away with some woman I thought there was a chance. I don’t believe that sort of thing ever answers. He’d have got sick to death of her in three months. But if he hasn’t gone because he’s in love, then it’s finished.”

 

 

 

Now I am well aware that pettiness and grandeur, malice and charity, hatred and love, can find place side by side in the same human heart.
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