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Word Count: 1,252
BETWEEN THE ACTS Miss La Trobe they hailed her now Whats the idea about this She stopped David and Iris each had a hand on the gramophone It must be hidden yet must be close enough to the audience to be heard Well hadnt she given orders Where were the hurdles covered in leaves Fetch them Mr Streatfield had said he would see to it Where was Mr Streatfield No clergyman was visible Perhaps hes in the Barn Tommy cut along and fetch him Tommys wanted in the first scene Beryl then The mothers disputed One child had be chosen another not Fair hair was unjustly preferred to dark Mrs Ebury had forbidden Fanny to act because of the nettle-rash There was another name in the village for nettle-rash Mrs Balls cottage was not what you might call clean In the last war Mrs Ball lived with another man while her husband was in the trenches All this Miss La Trobe knew but refused to be mixed up in it She splashed into the fine mesh like a great stone into the lily pool The criss-cross was shattered Only the roots beneath water were of use to her Vanity for example made them all malleable The boys wanted the big parts the girls wanted the fine clothes Expenses had to be kept down Ten pounds was the limit Thus conventions were outraged Swathed in conventions they couldnt see as she could that a dish cloth wound round a head in the open looked much richer than real silk So they squabbled but she kept out of it Waiting for Mr Streatfield she paced between the birch trees The other trees were magnificently straight They were not too regular but regular enough to suggest columns in a church in a church without a roof in an open-air cathedral a place where swallows darting seemed by the regularity of the trees to make a
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