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The Wheel of Life   By: (1873-1945)

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First Page:

THE WHEEL OF LIFE

by

ELLEN GLASGOW

New York Doubleday, Page & Company

1906

By the Same Author

THE DELIVERANCE THE BATTLE GROUND THE FREEMAN, AND OTHER POEMS THE VOICE OF THE PEOPLE PHASES OF AN INFERIOR PLANET THE DESCENDANT

CONTENTS

PART I. Impulse

CHAPTER I. In Which the Romantic Hero is Conspicuous by His Absence II. Treats of an Eccentric Family III. Apologises for an Old fashioned Atmosphere IV. Ushers in the Modern Spirit V. In Which a Young Man Dreams Dreams VI. Shows That Mr. Worldly Wise Man May Belong to Either Sex VII. The Irresistible Force VIII. Proves That a Poor Lover May Make an Excellent Friend IX. Of Masques and Mummeries X. Shows the Hero to Be Lacking in Heroic Qualities XI. In Which a Lie Is the Better Part of Truth

PART II. Illusion

I. Of Pleasure as the Chief End of Man II. An Advance and a Retreat III. The Moth and the Flame IV. Treats of the Attraction of Opposites V. Shows the Dangers as Well as the Pleasures of the Chase VI. The Finer Vision VII. In Which Failure Is Crowned By Failure VIII. "The Small Old Path" IX. The Triumph of the Ego X. In Which Adams Comes Into His Inheritance XI. On the Wings of Life

PART III. Disenchantment

I. A Disconsolate Lover and a Pair of Blue Eyes II. The Deification of Clay III. The Greatest of These IV. Adams Watches in the Night and Sees the Dawn V. Treats of the Poverty of Riches VI. The Feet of the God VII. In Which Kemper Is Puzzled VIII. Shows That Love Without Wisdom Is Folly IX. Of the Fear in Love X. The End of the Path

PART IV. Reconciliation

I. The Secret Chambers II. In Which Laura Enters the Valley of Humiliation III. Proves a Great City to Be a Great Solitude IV. Shows That True Love Is True Service V. Between Laura and Gerty VI. Renewal

PART I

IMPULSE

CHAPTER I

IN WHICH THE ROMANTIC HERO IS CONSPICUOUS BY HIS ABSENCE

As the light fell on her face Gerty Bridewell awoke, stifled a yawn with her pillow, and remembered that she had been very unhappy when she went to bed. That was only six hours ago, and yet she felt now that her unhappiness and the object of it, which was her husband, were of less disturbing importance to her than the fact that she must get up and stand for three minutes under the shower bath in her dressing room. With a sigh she pressed the pillow more firmly under her cheek, and lay looking a little wistfully at her maid, who, having drawn back the curtains at the window, stood now regarding her with the discreet and confidential smile which drew from her a protesting frown of irritation.

"Well, I can't get up until I've had my coffee," she said in a voice which produced an effect of mournful brightness rather than of anger, "I haven't the strength to put so much as my foot out of bed."

Her eyes followed the woman across the room and through the door, and then, turning instinctively to the broad mirror above her dressing table, hung critically upon the brilliant red and white reflection in the glass. It was her comforting assurance that every woman looked her best in bed; and as she lay now, following the lines of her charming figure beneath the satin coverlet, she found herself wondering, not without resentment, why the possession of a beauty so conspicuous should afford her only a slight and temporary satisfaction. Last week a woman whom she knew had had her nose broken in an automobile accident, and as she remembered this it seemed to her that the mere fact of her undisfigured features was sufficient to be the cause of joyful gratitude. But this, she knew, was not so, for her face was perfectly unharmed; and yet she felt that she could hardly have been more miserable, even with a broken nose.

Here she paused for an instant in order to establish herself securely in her argument, for, though she could by no stretch of the imagination regard her mind as of a meditative cast, there are hours when even to the most flippant experience wears the borrowed mantle of philosophy... Continue reading book >>




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