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days, when I wondered why the birds didn't peck her in preference
to apples, are shrivelled now; and her eyes, that used to darken
their whole neighbourhood in her face, are fainter (though they
glitter still); but her rough forefinger, which I once associated
with a pocket nutmeg-grater, is just the same, and when I see my
least child catching at it as it totters from my aunt to her, I
think of our little parlour at home, when I could scarcely walk.
My aunt's old disappointment is set right, now. She is godmother
to a real living Betsey Trotwood; and Dora (the next in order) says
she spoils her.

There is something bulky in Peggotty's pocket. It is nothing
smaller than the Crocodile Book, which is in rather a dilapidated
condition by this time, with divers of the leaves torn and stitched
across, but which Peggotty exhibits to the children as a precious
relic. I find it very curious to see my own infant face, looking
up at me from the Crocodile stories; and to be reminded by it of my
old acquaintance Brooks of Sheffield.

Among my boys, this summer holiday time, I see an old man making
giant kites, and gazing at them in the air, with a delight for
which there are no words. He greets me rapturously, and whispers,
with many nods and winks, 'Trotwood, you will be glad to hear that
I shall finish the Memorial when I have nothing else to do, and
that your aunt's the most extraordinary woman in the world, sir!'

Who is this bent lady, supporting herself by a stick, and showing
me a countenance in which there are some traces of old pride and
beauty, feebly contending with a querulous, imbecile, fretful
wandering of the mind? She is in a garden; and near her stands a
sharp, dark, withered woman, with a white scar on her lip. Let me
hear what they say.

'Rosa, I have forgotten this gentleman's name.'

Rosa bends over her, and calls to her, 'Mr. Copperfield.'

'I am glad to see you, sir. I am sorry to observe you are in
mourning. I hope Time will be good to you.'

Her impatient attendant scolds her, tells her I am not in mourning,
bids her look again, tries to rouse her.

'You have seen my son, sir,' says the elder lady. 'Are you
<- Previous | Table Of Contents | Next -> Digital Library - Copperfield by Charles Dickens

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