At times a lava of talk came rushing out of
her, shreds of rage or reminiscence, in a jumble of
German and English; she complained that she was a prisoner
in this room, in this house, in this deprived land.
“England, this land without cultivation,” she would sob all day.
But I had begun to reassess these outcries — they seemed
more calculated than spontaneous. They were (I supposed this long
before) feints and trials. In reality they were the lamentations
of exile. It was not that she missed old comforts;
she missed old dignities. Her ideal was an aristocratic humanism.
Paraphrases from the novel Heir to the Glimmering World by Cynthia Ozick.