Untouchable

He wanted to warm his flesh; he wanted the warmth to get behind the scales of the dry, powdery surface that had formed on his fingers; he wanted the blood in the blue veins that stood out on the back of his hand to melt. He turned his hands so as to show them to the sun. He lifted his face to the sun, open-eyed for a moment, then with the pupils of his eyes half closed, half open. And he lifted his chin upright. It was pleasing to him. It seemed to give him a thrill, a queer sensation which spread on the surface of his flesh where the tincture of warmth penetrated the numbed skin. He felt vigorous in this bracing atmosphere.”

Mulk Raj Anand, Untouchable (New York: Penguin Books, 1940), 25.

I enjoyed this passage because of the descriptiveness of the feeling of warmth. It is represented as almost a rejuvenation, where the warmth of the sun ignites power in one’s self.

Mrs. Dalloway

“As a cloud crosses the sun, silence falls on London; and falls on the mind. Effort ceases. Time flaps on the mast. There we stop; there we stand. Rigid, the skeleton of habit alone upholds the human frame. Where there is nothing, Peter Walsh said to himself; feeling hollowed out, utterly empty within. Clarissa refused me, he thought. He stood there thinking, Clarissa refused me.”

Virginia Woolf, Mrs. Dalloway (New York: Harcourt, Inc., 2005), 49.

There’s excellent imagery in this excerpt that emphasizes Peter Walsh’s thoughts. The cloud crossing the sun is a huge metaphor for the way that he is feeling because Clarissa refused him. He feels “hollowed out” and “empty”.