Wednesday, March 14, 2012

The New Rythum

Having nibbled a cake at Sherry’s, and left a card in Madison Avenue on the Archbishop of New York (who was yet again, it seemed, a father), Mrs Rosemerchant told Lionel to drop her beneath the elm trees in Central Park.  Turning into Fifty-ninth Street, however, she altered her mind, and directed him to a house on Fifth Avenue a little beyond the synagogue.  Skirting the Park, enchanting now, decked in the very earliest buds of spring, the car slackened speed before an edifice in brown stone, constructed on the lines of a château François Ier


     Assembling simultaneously in a batch together several equipages were obstructing the roadway just ahead.  Blocking her windscreen, she recognized Bertie Waldorf’s handsome English horses of Tetrarch grey, with their white and silver harness, and the closed limousine of Mrs Stella Mandarin Dove. Evidently the committee of the Animals Subscription-ball in aid of the ‘Ada Beamish Maternity-home Extension’ was rallying loyally to the president, Mrs Otto van Cotton.

     ‘It’s remarkable always how Selina can compel attendance,’ Mrs Rosemerchant reflected, alighting between a couple of smiling Sphinxes, bearing a monogram and the device:  Take Nature as it comes.

     Following leisurely in the wake of several vanishing backs, she found herself beneath a Renaissance rotunda, bare but for an antique statue or two, and a vast block fan in miniature mosaics that comprised the floor: from the adjoining reception rooms came a convivial hum of voices.

     Repudiating Birth-control, believing that men and women should multiply and increase, the ‘Ada Beamish’ appeal found in Mrs Van Cotton an ideal supporter.  

     An altercation of the choice of cotillion favours was in progress as Mrs Rosemerchant was announced.

 ‘For the fifth figure let us provide vanity bags for the gentlemen and moustache-brushes for the ladies,’ a bald, clean-shaven man in horn-rimmed glasses had just launched the suggestion.

     ‘Give me to know, Baron, which favour goes to which?’

     ‘Say, everybody, why not whips?’  The proposal fell from the lips of a woman of almost fearsome beauty, recalling Medusa, with her long trembling ear-rings and dark-parted hair.  

          ‘First, give me to know, dear, what we all would do with them? . . .? . . .?

          Welcomed rapturously by her hostess, Mrs Rosemerchant lost the reply.

Birth Control: Lloyd Terrell (aka Charmers), 1970  (Link)

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