Seeing that I had just discovered the entire principles upon which the half-memory falsely called imagination is based, I felt entitled to laugh, but forbore, for the sake of the tale. "You're right You're the man with imagination. A black-haired chap in a decked ship," I said. "No, an open ship like a big boat." This was maddening.
Dreams had come to her, vague, delicious bits of fancy which had whispered in her ear and passed, leaving a new softness in her eyes, a new flush upon her cheek. There was about her a dewy freshness which seemed to brighten up the world. Vaguely her girl friends wondered what had "come over" Esther Coombe, and at home Aunt Amy's pathetic eyes followed her, dim with a half-memory of long past joy.
He moved closer to her and, leaning against the deck rail, was looking into her face with an expression so different from any she had ever seen in his brown eyes before, wistful and beseeching instead of confident, alert and dauntless, that it set her heart a-flutter with a sudden, tantalizing half-memory. Where, when, had she seen brown eyes with that look in them?
As the Captain lay on his back, looking first at the kneeling Indian, then at the sky overhead, he was thinking of the Long Arrow, again with a half-memory of some other occasion when they had met. Then, slowly, it came to him. It was at the last council to decide on his release from captivity, five years before. The Long Arrow had come from a distant village to urge the death of the prisoner.
For the rest of the way Thurston watched the green hills slide by and the greener hollows and gave himself up to visions of Fort Benton; visions of creaking bull-trains crawling slowly, like giant brown worms, up and down the long hill; of many high-piled bales of buffalo hides upon the river bank, and clamorous little steamers churning up against the current; the Fort Benton that had, for many rushing miles, filled and colored the speech of Hank Graves and stimulated his childish half-memory.
And it's the half-memory of what you do at night that causes this sense of anticipation you now experience; for what is anticipation, after all, but memory thrown forward? There was a pause then, during which Rogers lit a cigarette, while Minks straightened his tie several times in succession.
I had known them, and should return to them again. This dim half-memory, which perhaps comes to all children, I had felt when younger still, almost before I could walk.
There's a dim half-memory of being lifted up to the gangway, and of a big round countenance covered with freckles and surrounded with red hair staring at me over the bulwarks. I also had a disconnected impression of a dark face, with extraordinary eyes, close to mine; but that I thought was a nightmare, until I met it again.
Sometimes a flitting half-memory, of a novel to be written, a novel it was important that he should write, tantalised him for a space before vanishing again; and sometimes whole novels, perfect, splendid, established to endure, rose magically before him. And sometimes the memories were absurdly remote and trivial, of garrets he had inhabited and lodgings that had sheltered him, and so forth.
We took an irresponsible, smiling pleasure in noting these advantages particularly after lunch; and sometimes, where an old house was empty, we would go over it, and stare at beams and chimneypieces and hear the haunted tale of its fortunes, with a faint half-memory in our breasts of that one-time bugbear we had known as "copy."