winter, again

It had begun to snow again. He watched sleepily the flakes, silver and dark, falling obliquely against the lamplight.  The time had come for him to set out on his journey westward.  Yes, the newspapers were right: snow was general all over Ireland.  It was falling on every part of the dark central plain, on the treeless hills, falling softly upon the Bog of Allen and, further westward, softly falling into the dark mutinous Shannon waves…It lay thickly drifted on the crooked crosses and headstones, on the spears of the little gate, on the barren thorns.  His soul swooned slowly as he heard the snow falling faintly through the universe and faintly falling, like the descent of their last end, upon all the living and the dead.~James Joyce, “The Dead”

Here, it’s falling fast, in morning, over the cars and grass, swirling in two directions.  The flakes dance their way down, spinning.  It’s a light snow, or was, for now it’s the next day, and it’s stopped at last.  It fell for two days.  The ground is sparkling now with snow and sun.  Why do these lines sound so cheesy?  Is it because they follow Joyce, who really wrote about snow?


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