She turned and looked over the acacias still shaking their green leaves, then got to her knees and stubbed her cigarette in the saucer.
(Jack Cox, Dodge Rose)
From THE WHITE GARDEN (1995)
When I saw that Robin Cadwallader had recently published a novel titled ‘The Book of Colours’, I went back to my novel ‘The White Garden’ in which there is a long section called ‘The Book of Colours’. This one of mine is narrated by St Teresa of Avila. She is reflecting on moments in her life, taking as her prompt her memories of different colours.
Here is her piece on ‘The Cinnamon Walls of the Incarnation Convent’:
“I crossed the humped bridge over the little stream, and soon I saw the elms, their bare branches black amongst the snow, etched against the cinnamon walls of the Incarnation. I paused, small, and I drew in my breath. The crisp air entered my throat and lungs, and I felt an intense pain. Summoning all my resolve, I crossed the vestibule where the floor was cobbled and the…
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He thus took delight in the blue and the grey ocean, the beauty of snow clad mountains and of the green lowlands, the magic of the north woods and the grandeur of southern vegetation, the atmosphere of landscapes upon which great historical memories rest, and the peace of untouched nature.
(Freud, ‘The disappointments of war’, in Reflections on War and Death, tr. A. A. Brill & A. B. Kuttner)
And so, when such metaphysical shadows, and such colourless self-concentration of the introspective spirit, had been brushed aside, existence seemed to be transformed into the sunny land of flowers―and, as we know, no flowers are black.
(Hegel, Science of Logic, preface to the first edition, tr. W. H. Johnston & L. G. Struthers)
During the night the wind had blown away all the clouds; the dark blue sky was spreading overhead, and in its midst was the bright sun shining down on the green slopes of the mountain, where the flowers opened their little blue and yellow cups, and looked up to him smiling. Heidi went running hither and thither and shouting with delight, for here were whole patches of delicate red primroses, and there the blue gleam of the lovely gentian, while above them all laughed and nodded the tender-leaved golden cistus.
The graceful wild clematis festooned the shrubbery along the creeks with great wreaths of magnificent white bloom, which loaded every breeze with perfume; the pretty bright green senna shrubs along the river-banks were decked in blossoms which rivalled the deep blue of the sky in brilliance; the magpies built their nests in the tall gum-trees, and savagely attacked unwary travellers who ventured too near their domain; the horses were rolling fat, and invited one to get on their satin backs and have a gallop; the cry of the leather-heads was heard in the orchard as the cherry season approached.
(Miles Franklin, My Brilliant Career, ch. 12)