Miss Brill Summary
On a crisp, beautiful fall Sunday, as she rests on her “unique” (1) bench, Miss Brill keeps in mind securing her unique fox fur necklet and thoroughly preparing it for her weekly getaway to the Jardins Publiques, or Public Gardens. After brushing the fur, polishing the little creature’s glass eyes, and repairing his compressed nose, Miss Brill divulges that he is not simply a fur; he is a “rogue” (1) and a companion.
Miss Brill notices every information of her environments as she sits in the park; she talks about the chill in the air and the band conductor’s brand-new coat and his happy manner of carrying out, “like a rooster about to crow” (1 ). The music seems “louder and gayer” (1) today with the Season starting. Sharing her “unique” (1) seat with an old couple she has actually seen here before, she is dissatisfied that they do not talk, because she takes pleasure in eavesdroping on other people’s lives. She reveals that eavesdropping is one of her preferred parts of Sundays in the park, where she can think of “being in other individuals’s lives simply for a minute” (1 ).
Keeping in mind the English couple who sat beside her the previous week, she states her disgust with the wife, who talked about at length her requirement for spectacles and refusal to get them, while her client partner tried to assist her by explaining solutions to all the troubles she pictured spectacles would trigger.
Miss Brill “wished to shake her” (2 ). Continuing to observe individuals in the park this Sunday, Miss Brill explains all of the characters that pass by: kids running around being chased by their mothers, older children playing, running, and laughing, young couples meeting up for a stroll, and two peasant ladies walking through the park leading donkeys.
Miss Brill remarks that the people in the park each Sunday are nearly always the exact same, and that there is something “amusing about nearly all of them. They were odd, quiet, almost all old, and from the way they gazed they looked as though they ‘d simply originate from dark little spaces or even– even cupboards!” (2 ). Suddenly, a scene happens before her: an older female meets a man she knows. She uses a faded, old ermine toque; she is all the same color– yellow and faded– as her hat. He brushes her off rudely, blowing smoke from his cigarette in her face and marching away.
The older girl pretends to see another, much better acquaintance in the range and hurries off. Miss Brill has compassion with this woman, thinking of that the band drum vanquish, “‘The Brute! The Brute! ‘” (2 ), in reaction to the man’s callous disrespect. The old couple gets up and leaves. Miss Brill understands that the scene before her reminds her of a play; they are all actors on the stage of life. In this method, she can picture herself as an essential actress in the play, a needed and integral part of life. She realizes that this is why she is shy about informing her English trainees about what she does on Sundays.
She even envisions the old, invalid guy she reads to being pleased that he is being read to by a starlet. She thinks of informing him that she has been an actress for a long time. The band starts up again, and Miss Brill imagines all of the business– all of the complete strangers in the park– singing along with the band. They are all part of something uplifting and terrific. At this minute, a young couple sits down next to her and Miss Brill right away casts them as the hero and heroine of her internal play. Intent on their own lives, the young man wants the young woman to inform him she enjoys him. She declines.
The boy assumes that his sweetheart is shy due to the fact that of the old woman sitting next to them: he insults Miss Brill, calling her a “silly old thing” (3) whom nobody wants and who need to “keep her silly old mug at home” (3 ). In turn, the lady laughs at Miss Brill’s fur, which she says looks like a “fried whiting” (3 ). Miss Brill goes straight home, not stopping in the bakery for her typical piece of honeycake, a weekly treat. She sits on her bed, in her “little dark room– her room like a cabinet” (4) for a long time; then, she gently puts her fur necklet away. She thinks of that she hears something weeping as she shuts the cover.