A Nathaniel Hawthorne Story

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from "Filling the Long Space of Loneliness"
Ellen Wilson Fielding
in The Word Among Us August 2004

Rose remembered all her life a visit her father recounted making to an English poorhouse. A small, diseased child covered with sores drew close to Hawthorne and held up his arms beseechingly. Hawthorne's body reacted with strong physical revulsion, but he fought his natural response and picked up and hugged the child. He explained later that he felt God had promised the little boy that kindness and that he could never have called himself a man again if he had refused.

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IIRC, Flannery O'Connor recounts this story in her introduction to A Memoir of Mary Ann.



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This page contains a single entry by Steven Riddle published on July 6, 2004 6:59 AM.

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