Page:Manhattan Transfer (John Dos Passos, 1925).djvu/370

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Manhattan Transfer

"And killed a fireman."

Anna saw Elmer coming towards them down the avenue, his thin face stuck forward, his hands hidden in the pockets of his frayed overcoat. She left the two girls and walked towards him, "Was you goin down to the house? Dont lets go, cause the old woman's scoldin somethin terrible. . . . I wish I could get her into the Daughters of Israel. I cant stand her no more."

"Then let's walk over and sit in the square," said Elmer.

"Dont you feel the spring?"

She looked at him out of the corner of her eye. "Dont I? Oh Elmer I wish this strike was over. . . . It gets me crazy doin nothin all day."

"But Anna the strike is the worker's great opportunity, the worker's university. It gives you a chance to study and read and go to the Public Library."

"But you always think it'll be over in a day or two, an what's the use anyway?"

"The more educated a feller is the more use he is to his class."

They sat down on a bench with their backs to the playground. The sky overhead was glittering with motherofpearl flakes of sunset. Dirty children yelled and racketed about the asphalt paths.

"Oh," said Anna looking up at the sky, "I'd like to have a Paris evening dress an you have a dress suit and go out to dinner at a swell restaurant an go to the theater an everything."

"If we lived in a decent society we might be able to. . . . There'd be gayety for the workers then, after the revolution."

"But Elmer what's the use if we're old and scoldin like the old woman?"

"Our children will have those things,"

Anna sat bolt upright on the seat. "I aint never goin to have any children," she said between her teeth, "never, never, never."