IlluStratIoN: Paul DavIS, tex.sct: craIG taylor.
know? Standing right there, isn’t he?
He loves her just as much as he did the
The Best Bit
day before and she’s thinking: yeah, this
could be all right after all. I got away
with this one. I just told the truth.
David R., Bristol, age 37, on Tess of the d’Urbervilles
But then – and this just broke my
bloody heart – Tess finds her letter. An-
ll She waNtS is to go to a place know they shouldn’t. But they do matter, at gel Clare’s not read it after all. She finds
where no ghost of the past can reach least to some. You’re not proud of them. It’s it tucked under the carpet – that bloody
her. She says that, you know – or words to just, you know … they’re there. I’m glad carpet, know what I mean? I literally
that ef_fect. That’s all Tess wants. I think it’s he was able to write it like that. I like when looked at carpet dif_ferently after that.
moving to hear a sentiment like that, don’t Hardy does that sort of thing. He can really You know, you don’t get carpet playing
you? I mean, I moved to Oldham once kick you in the goolies sometimes, that guy. the role of a villain in a lot of books. And
because I wanted to get away from Bristol, Emotionally, I mean. now it’s too late for Tess, isn’t it? She can’t
but it wasn’t the same. I was mostly just sick But the bit that gets me is when Tess tell the truth. I swear, when I read that it
of the pubs. Tess has got more of a reason writes her letter. She just spills out the was like my heart was put in the shred-
to want to forget the past. For me, this bit truth about herself and the next day, after der, one of those massive paper shredders.
of the book comes down to a simple lesson: this horrible night, she’s trying to figure You don’t come away from that bit light-
you know at heart you’re a good person, out if Angel Clare has read the thing ly. To this day I tell my friends, ‘Check
yeah? You know things have happened and if he’ll still marry her. It’s excruciat- the carpet after your mail gets delivered.
in your past. They shouldn’t matter. You ing. But there he is in the morning, you Every time.’
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