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Oh, for a hot, languorous summer and Isabelle!"
"Oh, you and your Isabelle! I'll bet she's a simple one... let's say
So Amory declaimed "The Ode to a Nightingale" to the bushes they passed.
"I'll never be a poet," said Amory as he finished. "I'm not enough of a
sensualist really; there are only a few obvious things that I notice as
primarily beautiful: women, spring evenings, music at night, the sea;
I don't catch the subtle things like 'silver-snarling trumpets.' I may
turn out an intellectual, but I'll never write anything but mediocre
They rode into Princeton as the sun was making colored maps of the sky
behind the graduate school, and hurried to the refreshment of a shower
that would have to serve in place of sleep. By noon the bright-costumed
alumni crowded the streets with their bands and choruses, and in the
tents there was great reunion under the orange-and-black banners that
curled and strained in the wind. Amory looked long at one house which
bore the legend "Sixty-nine." There a few gray-haired men sat and talked
quietly while the classes swept by in panorama of life.
UNDER THE ARC-LIGHT
Then tragedy's emerald eyes glared suddenly at Amory over the edge of
June. On the night after his ride to Lawrenceville a crowd sallied to
New York in quest of adventure, and started back to Princeton about
twelve o'clock in two machines. It had been a gay party and different
stages of sobriety were represented. Amory was in the car behind; they
had taken the wrong road and lost the way, and so were hurrying to catch
It was a clear night and the exhilaration of the road went to Amory's
head. He had the ghost of two stanzas of a poem forming in his mind. ...
So the gray car crept nightward in the dark and there was no life
stirred as it went by.... As the still ocean paths before the
shark in starred and glittering waterways, beauty-high, the
moon-swathed trees divided, pair on pair, while flapping
nightbirds cried across the air....
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