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March for The Arts Group

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Rodion Belousov
Rodion Belousov

Free Download Primeval: Time Is Fleeting


The feeling of unreality persisted during the long train journey whichfollowed. The conveyance of the three thousand horses which belonged tothe brigade was a business ineffably tedious. Feeding and watering thehorses took up much time, and the men needed to have a sharp eye kept onthem, because everyone in France seemed to have entered into aconspiracy to make the men drunk--there was free wine for them whereverthey came in contact with civilians, and the young soldiers drank inignorance of its potency and the old soldiers drank with delightedappreciation.




Free Download Primeval: Time Is Fleeting



Perhaps it had been a premonition which had caused the Brigadier-Generalto talk so freely to Curzon about what should be done should the lattersucceed to his command. It was no later than next morning, when theGerman bombardment was searching for the shallow seam in the earthwherein crouched the Twenty-second Lancers, that a mud-daubed runnercame crawling up the drainage ditch which had already assumed thefunction of a communication trench in this section, and gave Curzon afolded scrap of paper. The writing was blurred and shaky, and thesignature was indecipherable, but the meaning was clear. The General wasdead and Curzon was in command of the brigade. The runner was able tosupplement the information--a shell had hit the brigade headquarters andhad killed or wounded everyone there and left everything disorganized.It was clearly necessary that Curzon should waste no time in taking overhis duties.


For a long time Curzon dealt out death and despair among those old men;it was fortunate that he did not feel the awkwardness which a moresensitive man might have felt. After all, casualties were a perfectlynatural subject for a military man to discuss. It was need for his lunchwhich caused him in the end to break off the conversation, and even atlunch he was not free from interruption. Someone came up and spoke tohim as he began on his soup--a tall, heavily-built bald old man in theuniform of a captain of a very notable regiment of infantry. Hedisplayed all the embarrassment of an English gentleman addressing astranger with an unconventional request.


Her Grace was mildly surprised at finding Curzon in her house, and sheendeavoured to freeze him by displaying exactly that mildness ofsurprise which could not be construed as rudeness but which mostdefinitely could not be called overwhelming hospitality. It was all verywell to have a successful general to dinner at a time when successfulgenerals were more fashionable than poets or pianists, but that gave himno excuse for presuming on his position--especially when he promised tobe of no use at all in her political manoeuvres. But before Curzon hadtime to take note of the drop in temperature and to take his leave LadyEmily had interposed--unconsciously, perhaps.


The Duke's sense of proportion was less warped than his wife's, althoughnaturally he was inclined to attribute undue importance to hisactivities under the new Government. Between Curzon's anxiety for Emily,and the Duchess's desire to tell him much and to hear a little from him,it was some time before Curzon and the Duke were able to converseprivately and at leisure, but when they did the conversation was amomentous one. The Duke was as anxious as all his other colleagues inthe Government to receive an unbiased account of what was reallyhappening on the Western Front, freed from official verbiage and told bysomeone without a cause to plead. Out of Curzon's brief sentences--forthe conversation was of the fashion of small talk, in which the state ofmilitary affairs usurped the time-honoured pre-eminence of the weatheras a topic of conversation--the Duke was able to form a clearer picturethan ever before of the bloody confusion which had been the battle ofLoos. He stroked his chin and said, "H'm" a great many times, but he wasable to keep the conversational ball rolling by the aid of a fewconjunctive phrases.


Emily was fortunate in finding plenty to say. She told how her fatherhad given up the hopeless task of keeping Bude House properly heated andstaffed in war-time, and had solved his difficulties by lending theplace to the Government as offices. She described her rural life inSomersetshire, and the patriotic efforts she was making to increase thenational food supply. She dwelt in happy reminiscence on Curzon's lastleave, and told how much she was looking forward to his next, althoughshe appreciated how difficult it was for a man in his position to getaway. In fact Emily chattered away in her letters with a spirit andfreedom only to be explained by her delight in having a confidant forthe first time in her life.


We are now entering a period of incredible ironies. Let us cite but one of these ironies which is yet in its subtle stages: we shall see in our time a maximum if indirect effort made to establish irreligion as the state religion. It is actually a new form of paganism that uses the carefully preserved and cultivated freedoms of Western civilization to shrink freedom even as it rejects the value essence of our rich Judeo-Christian heritage.


Quite understandably, the manner in which things unfold seems to us mortals to be so natural. Our not knowing what is to come (in the perfect way that God knows) thus preserves our free agency completely. When, through a process we call inspiration and revelation, we are permitted at times to tap that divine databank, we are accessing, for the narrow purposes at hand, the knowledge of God. No wonder that experience is so unforgettable! 350c69d7ab


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