Dom Casmurro

by Machado de Assis

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CXII - The Imitations of Ezekiel

Such would not Ezekiel. I would not make poisoned balls, I suppose, but I would not turn them down either. What he would do for sure was to go after the dogs, the stone, as far as his legs would go. And if I had a stick, I'd go stick. Capitú died for that future battler.

"It does not leave us, that we like peace," she told me one day, "but Papa was still young like that; Mommy counted.

"Yes, you will not," I replied; I only find you a defect, like to imitate others.

-Imitar how?

-Immit the gestures, the manners, the altitudes; mimes cousin Justina, imitates Jose Dias; I've even found you a little bit of Escobar's feet and eyes ...

Capitú let himself be thinking and looking at me, and said at last that it was necessary to mend him. Now he saw that it was really his son's turn, but it seemed to him that it was only imitation to imitate, as it happens to many great people, who take the ways of others; and so that it would not go further ...

"We will not mortify him, either. There's always time to correct it.

-Ha, I'll see. You were not like that either, when you were angry with someone ...

"When I was angry, I agree; boy revenge.

"Yes, but I do not like imitations at home.

"And you liked me at that time?" I said, striking him in the face.

The Capitú's answer was a sweet laughter, one of those laughter that is not described, and will only be painted; then he stretched out his arms and threw them on his shoulders, so full of grace that they looked like a picture of flowers. I did the same to mine, and I felt that there was not a sculptor there that would transfer us the altitude to a piece of marble. Only the artist would shine, that's right. When a person or group does well, no one wants to know about the model, but about the work, and the work remains. Does not matter; we would know it was us.


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