Ulysses By James Joyce Chapter 15 - Circe

PRIVATE CARR: (Lurches towards the watch) He insulted my lady friend.

BLOOM: (Angrily) You hit him without provocation. I'm a witness. Constable, take his regimental number.

SECOND WATCH: I don't want your instructions in the discharge of my duty.

PRIVATE COMPTON: (Pulling his comrade) Here, bugger off Harry. Or Bennett'll shove you in the lockup.

PRIVATE CARR: (Staggering as he is pulled away) God fuck old Bennett. He's a whitearsed bugger. I don't give a shit for him.

FIRST WATCH: (Takes out his notebook) What's his name?

BLOOM: (Peering over the crowd) I just see a car there. If you give me a hand a second, sergeant . . .

FIRST WATCH: Name and address.

(Corny Kelleker, weepers round his hat, a death wreath in his hand, appears among the bystanders.)

BLOOM: (Quickly) O, the very man! (He whispers) Simon Dedalus' son. A bit sprung. Get those policemen to move those loafers back.

SECOND WATCH: Night, Mr Kelleher.

CORNY KELLEHER: (To the watch, with drawling eye) That's all right. I know him. Won a bit on the races. Gold cup. Throwaway. (He laughs) Twenty to one. Do you follow me?

FIRST WATCH: (Turns to the crowd) Here, what are you all gaping at? Move on out of that.

(The crowd disperses slowly, muttering, down the lane.)

CORNY KELLEHER: Leave it to me, sergeant. That'll be all right. (He laughs, shaking his head) We were often as bad ourselves, ay or worse. What? Eh, what?

FIRST WATCH: (Laughs) I suppose so.

CORNY KELLEHER: (Nudges the second watch) Come and wipe your name off the slate. (He lilts, wagging his head) With my tooraloom tooraloom tooraloom tooraloom. What, eh, do you follow me?

SECOND WATCH: (Genially) Ah, sure we were too.

CORNY KELLEHER: (Winking) Boys will be boys. I've a car round there.

SECOND WATCH: All right, Mr Kelleher. Good night.

CORNY KELLEHER: I'll see to that.

BLOOM: (Shakes hands with both of the watch in turn) Thank you very much, gentlemen. Thank you. (He mumbles confidentially) We don't want any scandal, you understand. Father is a wellknown highly respected citizen. Just a little wild oats, you understand.

FIRST WATCH: O. I understand, sir.

SECOND WATCH: That's all right, sir.

FIRST WATCH: It was only in case of corporal injuries I'd have to report it at the station.

BLOOM: (Nods rapidly) Naturally. Quite right. Only your bounden duty.

SECOND WATCH: It's our duty.

CORNY KELLEHER: Good night, men.

THE WATCH: (Saluting together) Night, gentlemen. (They move off with slow heavy tread)

BLOOM: (Blows) Providential you came on the scene. You have a car? . . .

CORNY KELLEHER: (Laughs, pointing his thumb over his right shoulder to the car brought up against the scaffolding) Two commercials that were standing fizz in Jammet's. Like princes, faith. One of them lost two quid on the race. Drowning his grief. And were on for a go with the jolly girls. So I landed them up on Behan's car and down to nighttown.

BLOOM: I was just going home by Gardiner street when I happened to . . .

CORNY KELLEHER: (Laughs) Sure they wanted me to join in with the mots. No, by God, says I. Not for old stagers like myself and yourself. (He laughs again and leers with lacklustre eye) Thanks be to God we have it in the house, what, eh, do you follow me? Hah, hah, hah!

BLOOM: (Tries to laugh) He, he, he! Yes. Matter of fact I was just visiting an old friend of mine there, Virag, you don't know him (poor fellow, he's laid up for the past week) and we had a liquor together and I was just making my way home . . .

(The horse neighs.)

THE HORSE: Hohohohohohoh! Hohohohome!

CORNY KELLEHER: Sure it was Behan our jarvey there that told me after we left the two commercials in Mrs Cohen's and I told him to pull up and got off to see. (He laughs) Sober hearsedrivers a speciality. Will I give him a lift home? Where does he hang out? Somewhere in Cabra, what?

BLOOM: No, in Sandycove, I believe, from what he let drop.

(Stephen, prone, breathes to the stars. Corny Kelleher, asquint, drawls at the horse. Bloom, in gloom, looms down.)

CORNY KELLEHER: (Scratches his nape) Sandycove! (He bends down and calls to Stephen) Eh! (He calls again) Eh! He's covered with shavings anyhow. Take care they didn't lift anything off him.

BLOOM: No, no, no. I have his money and his hat here and stick.

CORNY KELLEHER: Ah, well, he'll get over it. No bones broken. Well, I'll shove along. (He laughs) I've a rendezvous in the morning. Burying the dead. Safe home!

THE HORSE: (Neighs) Hohohohohome.

BLOOM: Good night. I'll just wait and take him along in a few . . .

(Corny Kelleher returns to the outside car and mounts it. The horse harness jingles.)

CORNY KELLEHER: (From the car, standing) Night.

BLOOM: Night.

(The jarvey chucks the reins and raises his whip encouragingly. The car and horse back slowly, awkwardly, and turn. Corny Kelleher on the sideseat sways his head to and fro in sign of mirth at Bloom's plight. The jarvey joins in the mute pantomimic merriment nodding from the farther seat. Bloom shakes his head in mute mirthful reply. With thumb and palm Corny Kelleher reassures that the two bobbies will allow the sleep to continue for what else is to be done. With a slow nod Bloom conveys his gratitude as that is exactly what Stephen needs. The car jingles tooraloom round the corner of the tooraloom lane. Corny Kelleher again reassuralooms with his hand. Bloom with his hand assuralooms Corny Kelleher that he is reassuraloomtay. The tinkling hoofs and jingling harness grow fainter with their tooralooloo looloo lay. Bloom, holding in his hand Stephen's hat, festooned with shavings, and ashplant, stands irresolute. Then he bends to him and shakes him by the shoulder.)

BLOOM: Eh! Ho! (There is no answer; he bends again) Mr Dedalus! (There is no answer) The name if you call. Somnambulist. (He bends again and hesitating, brings his mouth near the face of the prostrate form) Stephen! (There is no answer. He calls again.) Stephen!

STEPHEN: (Groans) Who? Black panther. Vampire. (He sighs and stretches himself, then murmurs thickly with prolonged vowels)

Who . . . drive . . . Fergus now
And pierce . . . wood's woven shade? . . .

(He turns on his left side, sighing, doubling himself together.)

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