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William Faulkner — LIGHT IN AUGUST watching the cars as they in turn crawl up and over the crest, when for the second time that afternoon he sees a man materialise apparently out of air, in the act of running. Even then he does not realise what Brown is about. He has progressed too far into peace and solitude to wonder. He just stands there and watches Brown run to the train, stooping, fleeing, and grasp the iron ladder at the end of a car and leap upward and vanish from sight as though sucked into a vacuum. The train is beginning to increase its speed; he watches the approach of the car where Brown vanished. It passes; clinging to the rear of it, between it and the next car, Brown stands, his face leaned out and watching the bushes. They see one another at the same moment: the two faces, the mild, nondescript, bloody one and the lean, harried, desperate one contorted now in a soundless shouting above the noise of the train, passing one another as though on opposite orbits and with an effect as of phantoms or apparitions. Still Byron is not thinking. “Great God in the mountain,” he says, with childlike and almost ecstatic astonishment; “he sho knows how to jump a train. He’s sho done that before.” He is not thinking at all. It is as though the moving wall of dingy cars were a dyke beyond which the world, time, hope unbelievable and certainty incontrovertible, waited, giving him yet a little more of peace. Anyway, when the last car passes, moving fast now, the world rushes down on him like a flood, a tidal wave. It is too huge and fast for distance and time; hence no path to be retraced, leading the mule for a good way before he remembers to get on it and ride. It is as though he has already and long since outstripped himself, already waiting at the cabin until he can catch up and enter. And then I will stand there and I will ... He tries it again: Then I will stand there and I will ... But he can get no further than that. He is in the road again now, approaching a wagon homeward bound from town. It is about six o’clock. He does not give up, however. Even if I can’t seem to get any further than that: when I will open the door and come in and stand there. And then I will. Look at her. Look as her. Look at her— The voice speaks again: “—excitement, I reckon.” “What?” Byron says. The wagon has halted. He is right beside it, the mule stopped too. On the wagon seat the man speaks again, in his flat, complaining voice: “Durn the luck. Just when I had to get started for home. I’m already late.” “Excitement?” Byron says. “What excitement?” The man is looking at him. “From your face, a man would say you had been in some excitement yourself.” “I fell down,” Byron says. “What excitement in town this evening?” “I thought maybe you hadn’t heard. About an hour ago. That nigger, Christmas. They killed him.”

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Light in August (William Faulkner,1932)  

Light in August (William Faulkner,1932)

Light in August (William Faulkner,1932)  

Light in August (William Faulkner,1932)

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