Cyrano de Bergerac
How we cite our quotes:
And why not? If you love her, tell her so!
You have covered yourself with glory in her eyes
This very day.
My old friend – look at me,
And tell me how much hope remains for me
With this protuberance! Oh I have no more
Illusions! Now and then – bah! I may grow
Tender, walking alone in the blue cool
Of evening, through some garden fresh with flowers
After the benediction of the rain;
My poor big devil of a nose inhales
April…and so I follow with my eyes
Where some boy, with a girl upon his arm,
Passes a patch of silver…and I feel
Somehow, I wish I had a woman too,
Walking with little steps under the moon,
And holding my arm so, and smiling. Then
I dream – and I forget…
And then I see
The shadow of my profile on the wall! (I. 566-583)
Cyrano’s biggest mistake is assuming that Roxane is too shallow to ever love him.
My friend, I have my bitter days,
Knowing myself so ugly, so alone.
Oh, not that ever! No,
That would be too grotesque – tears trickling down
All the long way along this nose of mine?
I will not so profane the dignity
of sorrow. Never any tears for me!
Why, there is nothing more sublime than tears,
Nothing! – Shall I make them ridiculous
In my poor person? (I. 584-593)
Cyrano allows his appearances to dictate his actions.
Speak to her
Through my nose? She might laugh at me;
That is the one thing in this world I fear! (I. 602-604)
Cyrano’s feelings for Roxane have reached paralyzing heights; this is why he acts through Christian – he doesn’t have the guts to act for himself. It is not kindness, then, that dictates his actions, but cowardice.