I shan’t wait any longer; I’m going out. I’ll find dry places between the puddles for my dainty paws to step on. An imperceptible thrill runs through the streaming garden, making the jewels hung all about, tremble and sparkle.... The slanting rays of the setting sun find their reflection in my eyes which are spangled with green and gold. Down near the horizon, where the sky is still unsettled, a glittering sword leaps up and puts to flight the dark, fuming cloud-horses, that have been galloping over our heads. Now the odor of the daturas rises and perfumes all the air, mingled with that of lemon leaves, bruised by the hail. The roses are crowned with midges. Oh sudden springtime! An involuntary smile stretches the corners of my mouth. I’m going to play at tickling my nostrils with the point of a sweet-smelling blade of grass, carefully stretching my neck to avoid the falling drops. But I want Him to follow and admire me. Will He not come out and enjoy himself with us?
(A voice is heard humming the motif of the Regensbogen: sol, si, re, sol, la, si,—all flats. A door opens and closes again. HE appears under the dripping foliage of vines and jasmine, framing the veranda, and at the same moment, a rainbow is seen in the sky.)
(A winter’s afternoon, in Paris. The studio; a fire crackles gently in the tower-shaped stove. TOBY-DOG and KIKI-THE-DEMURE, one on the floor, the other on his own particular cushion, proceed with the minute toilet which follows a long siesta. Peace reigns.)
My nails grow faster here than in the country.
It’s the contrary, with mine.
Not to be wondered at! She clips them for the
sake of the hangings ...
Well! (Magniloquently), what can’t be cured must be endured.
What are you going to do to-day?
Why ... nothing.
For a change I suppose.
KIKI-THE-DEMURE Pardon, to avoid change. What is this rage for change that takes possession of you all? Change means destruction. Only that which remains stationary is eternal.
I’m eternal then, these three hours past.
But you’ve been out with Her, haven’t you? You came in like a whirlwind; bells rang, clothes were shaken out, you were sneezing and laughing and aureoled with icy air.... The end of her nose felt so cold when She kissed me on the forehead. She always kisses me there, just over the dark stripes forming the classic M, which She assures me stands for miaou and for Minet, my name in French.