Dom Casmurro

by Machado de Assis

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L - A Middle Ground

A few minutes later I went to St. Joseph's seminary. If I could count the tears that I had wept in the morning and in the morning, it would be more than all those poured out since Adam and Eve. but it is good to be emphatic, again and again, to compensate for this scrupulousness of accuracy that afflicts me. However, if I follow only the memory of sensation, I am not far from the truth; at fifteen years, everything is infinite. Really, however prepared I was, I suffered a lot. My mother also suffered, but she suffered with her heart and soul; Father Cabral had found a middle ground, to experience my vocation; if at the end of two years I did not reveal an ecclesiastical vocation, I would follow another career.

-The promises must be fulfilled as God wills. Suppose our Lord denies his son a disposition, and that the custom of the seminary does not give him the taste he gave me, it is that the divine will is another. You could not put in your son, before he was born, a vocation that Our Lord refused you ...

It was a priest's grant. I gave my mother an early pardon, making the debt relief come from the creditor. Her eyes flashed, but Bocca said no. Jose Dias, having failed to go with me to Europe, clung to the nearest, and supported the "prowess of Mr. protonotario"; it only seemed to him that a year was enough.

"I am certain," he said, winking at me, "that within a year the ecclesiastical vocation of our Bentinho is manifest and decisive. You must give a priest a full hand. Also if it does not come in a year ...

And to me, later, in particular:

"Go for a year; a year passes quickly. If you do not like it, God does not want it, as the priest says, and in this case, my friend, Europe is the best remedy.

Capitú gave me the same advice, when my mother announced his definitive trip to the seminary:

"My daughter, you're going to lose your growing partner ..."

She treated her daughter so well (it was the first time my mother had given it to her) that she did not even have time to be sad; kissed his hand, and told him that I already knew it by myself. In particular he encouraged me to support everything with patience; at the end of a year things would be changed, and a year would go by quickly. It was not yet our farewell; This was done in the evening, in a way that asks for a special chapter. The only thing I say here is that, while we were holding each other, she would arrest my mother, become more assiduous and tender, live by her, with her eyes on her. My mother was naturally sympathic, and even sensitive; it hurt as much as it pleased any thing. He found in Capitú a lot of new graces, of rare and fine gifts; gave him a ring of his and some gallantry. He did not consent to photograph himself, as the girl asked him, to give him a portrait; but he had a miniature, done at the age of twenty-five, and after some hesitation he decided to give it to him. The eyes of Capitú, when he received the mime, do not describe themselves; they were not oblique, not hungry, they were right, clear, lucid. He kissed the portrait with passion, my mother did the same thing to her. All this reminds me of our farewell.

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