Tuesday, February 15, 2005

The Apple

Then Digory took a minute to get his breath, and then went softly into his Mother's room. And there she lay, as he had seen her lie so many other times, propped up on the pillows, with a thin, pale face that would make you cry to look at. Digory took the Apple of Life out of his pocket.

And just as the Witch Jadis had looked different when you saw her in our world instead of in her own, so the fruit of that mountain garden looked different too. There were of course all sorts of coloured things in the bedroom; the coloured counterpane on the bed, the wallpaper, the sunlight from the window, and Mother's pretty, pale blue dressing jacket. But the moment Digory took the Apple out of his pocket, all those things seemed to have scarcely any colour at all. Every one of them, even the sunlight, looked faded and dingy. The brightness of the Apple threw strange lights on the ceiling. Nothing else was worth looking at: you couldn't look at anything else. And the smell of the Apple of Youth was as if there was a window in the room that opened on Heaven.

"Oh, darling, how lovely," said Digory's Mother.

"You will eat it, won't you? Please," said Digory.

"I don't know what the Doctor would say," she answered. "But really - I almost feel as if I could."

He peeled it and cut it up and gave it to her piece by piece. And no sooner had she finished it than she smiled and her head sank back on the pillow and she was asleep: a real, natural, gentle sleep, without any of those nasty drugs, which was, as Digory knew, the thing in the whole world that she wanted most. And he was sure now that her face looked a little different. He bent down and kissed her very softly and stole out of the room with a beating heart; taking the core of the apple with him. For the rest of that day, whenever he looked at the things about him, and saw how ordinary and unmagical they were, he hardly dared to hope; but when he remembered the face of Aslan he did hope.
~C.S. Lewis, The Magician's Nephew (1955)

On this day:

1908 Lewis's mother, Flora Lewis, undergoes major cancer surgery.

3 Comment(s):

At Tue Feb 15, 04:00:00 AM EST, Blogger MrKimi said...

This is one of my favourite Lewis passages. My grandmother lived with us when I was a child. She liked her apples peeled and cut up. So I always get a little teary over this one.

At Tue Feb 15, 01:02:00 PM EST, Blogger Arevanye said...

Awww...sorry MrKimi. And bless your granny for giving you such sweet memories of her.

I also think it is so sad that Lewis's mother died when he was so young. I can never read this passage without thinking of him trying to write a different ending to her illness.

At Tue Feb 15, 02:43:00 PM EST, Blogger Arevanye said...

Just testing mail-to Blogger...that is all. Nothing to see here folks! ;-)


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