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Full text of "TheCompleteMemoirsOfGeorgeSherston"

ling Square and the sallow gusty sunset which flared
above the roofs. In the Cathedral, perhaps, I could
escape from the War for a while, although the Christian
Religion had apparently no claim to be regarded as a
Benevolent Neutral Power.

It was some Saint's Day, and the nave was crowded
with drifting figures, their footfalls echoing in the
dusk. Sometimes a chair scrooped when a worshipper
moved away. Candles burned in clear clusters, like
flickering gold flowers, in the shrines where kneeling
women gazed and whispered and moved their hands
devoutly. In the pulpit a priest was urging the Lenten
significance of "Jesu", tilting his pallid square face
from side to side and gesticulating mechanically. A
congregation sat or stood to hear him; among them,
at my elbow, a small child stared up at the priest with
stupid innocent eyes. That child couldn't understand
the sermon any more than it understood the War. It
saw a man, high up and alone, clenching his hands
and speaking vehemently; it also saw the figures of
people called soldiers who belonged to something that
made a much bigger noise than the preacher, who
now stopped suddenly, and the monotonous chanting
began again in front of the altar (sounding, I thought,
rather harsh and hopeless).

The preacher, I inferred, had been reminding us
that we ought to love one another and be like little
children. "Jesu" had said so, and He had died to save
us (but not to save the Germans or the Austrians or
any of that lot). It was no good trying to feel uplifted,
when such thoughts grimaced at me; but there was a
certain consolation in the solemnity of the Cathedral,
and I remained there after the service had ended.
Gradually, the glory faded from the rose-window
above the organ. I looked at all the windows, until
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