Raise High the Roof Beam, Carpenters and Seymour: an Introduction
How we cite our quotes:
I think she feels a mixed maternal and sexual drive in lily general direction. ("Roof Beam" 4.7)
Seymour does seem to have a solid understanding of his relationship with Muriel. Similarly, he also understands why her mother has concerns about him. Yet, for all his understanding, he seems paralyzed when it comes to making things better between Muriel and himself.
Her marital goals are so absurd and touching. She wants to get a very dark sun tan and go up to the desk clerk in some very posh hotel and ask if her Husband has picked up the mail yet. She wants to shop for curtains. She wants to shop for maternity clothes. She wants to get out of her mother's house, whether she knows it or not, and despite her attachment to her. She wants children - good-looking children, with her features, not mine. I have a feeling, too, that she wants her own Christmas tree ornaments to unbox annually, not her mother's. ("Roof Beam" 4.7)
Muriel is more interested in the institution of marriage than she is in marrying Seymour in particular. We have to wonder how she and Seymour, so radically different, ever ended up together. Fortunately, Salinger will explain in a bit…
"How I worship her simplicity, her terrible honesty. How I rely on it." ("Roof Beam" 4.9)
Look at the verbs Seymour uses to describe his feelings for Muriel. These are words of dependence. What does it tell us about his relationship?