09w02:4 Shakespeare's Blog III

by timothy. 0 Comments

January 9th

At the Theatre in the mornings they are rehearsing already in their several groups, for that is the one way to deal with short notice, to write a play soft-jointed and separable out. And it was without the walls that I had the good chance to see her and, my heart beating unwontedly, even to address a word. I was leaving for my lodging and her coach was coming by. Then a gentleman appears from Spitalfields way and his horse slipped and slithered in all the foul slushy snowbroth so that her own two took fright and the offside reared and whinnied. It was I that nimbly darted, though panting much after, and seized his head, saying calming words. Her coach-man got down and first her maid put out her face from the coach and the she on the other side, drawing aside her veil to see what was the matter. And so I went up and doffed my hat and bowed.

-All is right now. That horse slipped, see. He had ridden on and all is well again.

-I am beholden. I thank. Wait, I will give …

-Ah, madam, no. I am a gentleman. I am Master Shakespeare of the Theatre there.

-You are there? You are of Master Burbage’s company?

How knows she of him? Her voice is prettily foreign. She cannot say th or w. I tank. Bwait, I bwill geef … I drank in her goldeness.

-You have seen Master Burbage act then, madam?

-Him I did see in Rish Hard de Turd.

And so I smiled, saying:

-The play of which I myself am the author. You are welcome any time at the Theatre. I will be most happy to offer you what hospitality the house affords.

But she smiled queenlily, saying:

-I tank you. Now must we on.

So saying, she bade her coachman continue on their way and left me there standing in the dirty snow. And I was aware that H has said no more of the £1000 and I remain the writing hack whom they will welcome as a whole shareholder can I but find the money.

(Anthony Burgess, Nothing Like The Sun, p. 145-146)

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