of the Passage"
by John McGivering)
|notes on the text|
I cannot be sure that ‘ the blind face that cries and can’t wipe it’s eyes,’ which appears with horrible facetiousness in “La Nuit Blanche” in Departmental Ditties and as pure horror in (this story) rose in Kipling’s own dreams, but he himself has told us in “Brazilian Sketches” (Sussex Edition, Volume 24) that once in a child’s dream he wandered into a Fifth Quarter of the world and ‘ found everything different from all previous knowledge,’ and the memory of that dream must have provided the groundwork for George Cottar’s (“The Brushwood Boy” in The Day’s Work) wanderings …Braybrooke [Kipling's Soldiers, C W Daniel, London 1925, p. 92 ) regards this as a study of a man driven mad by three elementals:
The sense of being alone, the force of the pitiless sun ….. and the curse of being unable to sleep. …. Something robs Hummil of sleep and his mind slowly but surely goes.