Peter Walsh’s Love & Septimus Warren Smith’s War

Love is war some might say. Here were two men, not knowing each other as they appeared in Virginia Woolf’s novel, Mrs. Dalloway. One was damaged by his unrequited love for a woman and, the other by war.

Peter was empty and the things he used to fill it did not satisfy him. He loved Clarissa, i.e., Mrs Dalloway, but she did not share his feelings. He married, divorced and was in the process of marrying again. He thought that he was over her, but sometimes the mind plays tricks on the heart. But he lived.

“I will come,” said Peter, but he sat on for a moment. What is this terror? what is this ecstasy? he thought to himself. What is it that fills me with extraordinary excitement?// It is Clarissa, he said.// For there she was. From page 194

Septimus too was empty and full with the wrong things. He served his country. He saw death, and what did he get from it? What did he become? Damaged.

“. . . when Evans was killed, just before the Armistice, in Italy, Septimus, far from showing any emotion or recognising that here was the end of a friendship, congratulated himself upon feeling very little and very reasonably. The War had taught him. It was sublime. He had gone through the whole show, friendship, European War, death, had won promotion, was still under thirty and was bound to survive.” From page 86

He became crazy, and in the end, killed himself.

There are a lot of people out there that need to be emptied; emptiness like Jesus’ tomb, a person releasing his/her pain, a room where one can sit and think, is not bad.

Although I did not fancy the book, it did have some great points.

Have a lovely, sunflower day. 🙂

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