Sleep Fictions: A Digital Companion

II.II.1 Mirth

George Dorst becomes increasingly anxious and exhausted by his wife's scandalous, night-time behavior. Like Lily's father, he takes on the characteristics of a broken-down clock. Lily's increasing pity for him echoes the recollections she has of her father, who she remembers in Book 1, Chapter 3, as "the hazy outline of a neutral-tinted father [who] filled an intermediate space between the butler and the man who came to wind the clocks." The term "clock" appears 23 times in the novel and is often associated with Lily's anxieties over time's slippage or mechanic breakdown in human form. 

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