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Old 05-28-2017, 06:27 PM
jerryd jerryd is offline
Join Date: Feb 2008
Posts: 1,167

Hi Richard,

Congratulations on your book reviews! I do have a question regarding the prostitute. Do any sources state the year/s she left him and the year/s he went in search for her?

I found a source that states she had actually found him and nursed him back to health after he wandered aimlessly in front of a cab and was trampled over, and then she fled. The biographer goes on to say;

"...and into this last act [leaving him] may be interpreted the tenderest, the noblest, even if mute, tribute of her withered heart to the true, the chaste character of Francis Thompson...."

The biographer also goes on to quote from "A Child's Kiss" written by FT the following portion which actually talks about the cab incident.

Forlorn, and faint, and stark,
I had endured through watches of the dark
The abashless inquisition of each star,
Yea, was the outcast mark
Of all those heavenly passers' scrutiny;
Stood bound and helplessly
For Time to shoot his barbèd minutes at me;
Suffered the trampling hoof of every hour
In night's slow-wheelèd car;
Until the tardy dawn dragged me at length
From under those dread wheels; and, bled of strength,
I waited the inevitable last.
Then there came past
A child; like thee, a spring-flower; but a flower
Fallen from the budded coronal of Spring,
And through the city-streets blown withering.
She passed,—O brave, sad, lovingest, tender thing!—
And of her own scant pittance did she give,
That I might eat and live:
Then fled, a swift and trackless fugitive.
Therefore I kissed in thee
The heart of Childhood, so divine for me;
And her, through what sore ways,
And what unchildish days,
Borne from me now, as then, a trackless fugitive.
Therefore I kissed in thee
Her, child! and innocency,
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