Friday, April 04, 2008

uncle jack

more from To Kill a Mockingbird

I was proceeding on the dim theory, aside from the innate attraction of such words, that if Atticus discovered that I had picked them up at school he wouldn't make me go.

But at supper that evening when I asked him to pass the damn ham, please, Uncle Jack pointed at me. "See me afterward, young lady," he said.

When supper was over, Uncle Jack when to the livingroom and sat down. He slapped his thighs for me to come sit on his lap. I liked to smell him: he was like a bottle of alcohol and something pleasantly sweet. He pushed back my bangs and looked at me. "You're more like Atticus than your mother," he said. "You're also growing out of your pants a little."

"I reckon they fit all right."

"You like words like damn and hell now, don't you?"

I said I reckoned so.

"Well, I don't," said Uncle Jack, "not unless there's extreme provocation connected with 'em. I'll be here a week, and I don't want to hear any words like that while I'm here. Scout, you'll get in trouble if you go around saying things like that. You do want to grow up to be a lady, don't you?"

I said not particularly.

- chapter 9

1 comment:

Jim and Julianna said...

I agree, Kate, I love To Kill a Mockingbird, and I love Lee's subtle humor. Nice selection.