In a Teapot
He hacked through the fry on the dish and slapped it out on three plates, saying:
"In nomine Patris et Filii et Spiritus Sancti."
Haines sat down to pour out the tea.
"I'm giving you two lumps each," he said. "But, I say, Mulligan, you do make strong tea, don't you?"
Buck Mulligan, hewing thick slices from the loaf, said in an old woman's wheedling voice:
"When I makes tea I makes tea, as old mother Grogan said. And when I makes water I makes water."
"By Jove, it is tea," Haines said.
Buck Mulligan went on hewing and wheedling:
"So I do, Mrs Cahill, says she. Begob, ma'am, says Mrs Cahill, God send you don't make them in the one pot."
He lunged towards his messmates in turn a thick slice of bread, impaled on his knife.
"That's folk," he said very earnestly, "for your book, Haines. Five lines of text and ten pages of notes about the folk and the fishgods of Dundrum. Printed by the weird sisters in the year of the big wind."
He turned to Stephen and asked in a fine puzzled voice, lifting his brows:
"Can you recall, brother, is mother Grogan's tea and water pot spoken of in the Mabinogion or is it in the Upanishads?"
"I doubt it," said Stephen gravely.
"Do you now?" Buck Mulligan said in the same tone. "Your reasons, pray?"
"I fancy," Stephen said as he ate, "it did not exist in or out of the Mabinogion. Mother Grogan was, one imagines, a kinswoman of Mary Ann."
Buck Mulligan's face smiled with delight.
"Charming!" he said in a finical sweet voice, showing his white teeth and blinking his eyes pleasantly. "Do you think she was? Quite charming!" Then, suddenly overclouding all his features, he growled in a hoarsened rasping voice as he hewed again vigorously at the loaf:
For old Mary Ann
She doesn't care a damn.
But, hising up her petticoats ....