Chapter 36: - Page 3 of 3

The First Cloud

(English version of “Noli Me Tangere”)

Would these cries unheard by men reach the throne of God or be heard by the Mother of the distressed? The poor maiden who had never known a mother dared to confide these sorrows of an earthly love to that pure heart that knew only the love of daughter and of mother. In her despair she turned to that deified image of womanhood, the most beautiful idealization of the most ideal of all creatures, to that poetical creation of Christianity who unites in herself the two most beautiful phases of womanhood without its sorrows: those of virgin and mother,—to her whom we call Mary!

Mother, mother! she moaned.

Aunt Isabel came to tear her away from her sorrow since she was being asked for by some friends and by the Captain-General, who wished to talk with her.

Aunt, tell them that I’m ill, begged the frightened girlThey’re going to make me play on the piano and sing.

Your father has promised. Are you going to put your father in a bad light?

Maria Clara rose, looked at her aunt, and threw back her shapely arms, murmuring, Oh, if I only had—

But without concluding the phrase she began to make herself ready for presentation.

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