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During the First World War, Montgomery, horrified by reports of the " Rape of Belgium " in , was an intense supporter of the war effort, seeing the war as a crusade to save civilization, regularly writing articles urging men to volunteer for the Canadian expeditionary force and for people on the home front to buy victory bonds. Can they be true? They have committed terrible outrages and crimes, that is too surely true, but I hope desperately that these stories of the mutilation of children are false.
They harrow my soul. I walk the floor in my agony over them. I cry myself to sleep about them and wake again in the darkness to cringe with the horror of it. If it were Chester! In Leaskdale, like everywhere else in Canada, recruiting meetings were held where ministers, such as the Reverend MacDonald, would speak of Kaiser Wilhelm II as the personification of evil, described the "Rape of Belgium" in graphic detail, and asked for young men to step up to volunteer to fight for Canada, the British Empire, and for justice, in what was described at the time as a crusade against evil.
War is horrible, but there are things that are more horrible still, just as there are fates worse than death. Since women were playing an equal part to men in the war, it was unfair to give the vote to one and deny the other. Montgomery identified very strongly with the Allied cause, leading her on 10 March to write in her diary: "All my misery seemed to centre around Verdun where the snow was no longer white.
I seemed in my own soul to embrace all the anguish and strain of France. I was at peace. The conviction seized upon me that Verdun was safe-that the Germans would not pass the grim barrier of desperate France. I was as a woman from whom some evil spirit had been driven-or can it be as a priestess of old, who out of depths of agony wins some strange foresight of the future? When she heard of the fall of Kut-al-Amara, she wrote in her diary on 1 May "Kut-el-Amara has been compelled to surrender at last.
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We have expected it for some time, but that did not prevent us from feeling very blue over it all. It is an encouragement to the Germans and a blow to Britain's prestige. I feel too depressed tonight to do anything. As it went on, Lucy wrote in her diary "it unsettles him and he cannot do his work properly". Montgomery, a deeply religious woman, wrote in her diary: "I believe in a God who is good, but not omnipotent. I also believe in a principle of Evil, equal to God in power I believe an infinite ceaseless struggle goes on between them. Her journals show she was absolutely consumed by it, wracked by it, tortured by it, obsessed by it - even addicted to it.
Montgomery underwent several periods of depression while trying to cope with the duties of motherhood and church life and with her husband's attacks of religious melancholia endogenous major depressive disorder and deteriorating health: "For a woman who had given the world so much joy, life was mostly an unhappy one. The drug counters were besieged with frantic people seeking remedies and safeguards". I never felt so sick or weak in my life", going on to express thanks to God and her friends for helping her survive the ordeal. After the First World War, a recurring character in Montgomery's journal that was to obsess her for the rest of her life was "the Piper", who at first appeared as a heroic Highlander piper from Scotland, leading men into battle while playing traditional Highland tunes, but who turned out to be the Pied Piper of Hamelin , a trickster taking children away from their parents forever.
The Reverend Ewen MacDonald, a good Calvinist who believed in predestination, had become convinced that he was not one of "the Elect" chosen by God to go to Heaven, leading him to spend hours depressed and staring into space. Well, if she had a picture of me in my old dress, wresting with the furniture this morning, "cussing" the ashes and clinkers, she would die of disillusionment. However, I shall send her a reprint of my last photo in which I sat in rapt inspiration — apparently — at my desk, with pen in my hand, in gown of lace and silk with hair so — Amen.
A quite passable woman, of no kin whatever to the dusty, ash-covered Cinderella of the furnace-cellar. For much of her life, writing was her one great solace. Montgomery believed her spells of depression and migraine headaches she suffered from were both expressions of her suppressed romantic passions and Leard's ghost haunting her.
Starting in , Montgomery was engaged in five bitter, costly, and burdensome lawsuits with Louis Coues Page , owner of the publishing house L. Montgomery hired a lawyer in Boston and sued Page in the Massachusetts Court of Equity for illegally withholding royalties due her and for selling the U. In , the house where Montgomery grew up in Cavendish was torn down by her uncle, who complained that too many tourists were coming on to the property to see the house that inspired the house in which Anne was depicted as growing up.
In , Montgomery was infuriated with the film version of Anne of Green Gables for changing Anne from a Canadian to an American, writing in her diary:. The landscape and folks were 'New England', never P. A skunk and an American flag were introduced — both equally unknown in PE Island.
I could have shrieked with rage over the latter. Such crass, blatant Yankeeism! Montgomery", who is only mentioned in passing two-thirds into the article with the major focus being on the film's star Mary Miles Minter , who was presented as the true embodiment of Anne. Page had acquired the film rights to the story in , and as such, all of the royalties paid by Hollywood for both versions of Anne of Green Gables went to him, not Montgomery.
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Other series written by Montgomery include the "Emily" and "Pat" books, which, while successful, did not reach the same level of public acceptance as the "Anne" volumes. She also wrote a number of stand-alone novels, which were also generally successful, if not as successful as her Anne books. On 20 August , Montgomery started writing what became the novel Emily of New Moon , as she planned to replace Anne with Emily as the star of new series of novels.
One aspect that Emily, Anne and Montgomery all shared was "the flash"—the mystical power that Montgomery called in Emily of the New Moon "the wonderful moment when the soul seemed to cast aside the bonds of the flesh and spring upward towards the stars", allowing the soul to see "behind the veil" to a transcendent beauty. In , a Massachusetts court ruled in favor of Montgomery against her publisher, Louis Coues Page, as the judge found that he had systemically cheated her out of the profits from the Anne books since In terms of sales, both in her lifetime and since, Montgomery was the most successful Canadian author of all time, but because her books were seen as children's books and as women's books, she was often dismissed by the critics, who saw Montgomery as merely a writer for schoolgirls, and not as a serious writer.
In , Ewen MacDonald became estranged from his folk when he opposed his church joining the United Church of Canada , and was involved in an incident when he nearly ran over a Methodist minister who was promoting the union. Had he not been a minister, he almost certainly would have been charged with attempted murder. In , Montgomery's extremely depressed husband signed himself into a sanatorium in Guelph. In , Montgomery published Pat of the Silver Bush , which reflected a move towards more "adult" stories for young people.
Not externally , but spiritually she is I". In , upon her husband's retirement, Montgomery moved to Swansea , Ontario, a suburb of Toronto , buying a house which she named Journey's End, situated on Riverside Drive along the east bank of the Humber River. Montgomery continued to write, and in addition to writing other material returned to writing about Anne after a year hiatus, filling in previously unexplored gaps in the chronology she had developed for the character.
Writing kept up Montgomery's spirits as she battled depression while taking various pills to improve her mood, but in public she presented a happy, smiling face, giving speeches to various professional groups all over Canada. I thought nobody but Indians ever heard it. We hear it often because we are a silent race. My full name is Laughing Grey Owl. Montgomery liked Grey Owl's speech the same evening stating Canada "greatest asset is her forest lands" saying that most Canadians were too proud of "skyscrapers on Yonge Street" rather than the "natural resources we are destroying as fast as we can".
Scott , Morley Callaghan and Raymond Knister complained about the mostly female membership of the CAA, whom they felt had overly glorified someone like Montgomery who was not a "serious" writer. Montgomery was greatly upset by World War II, calling the war in a letter "this nightmare that has been loosed on the world Such suffering and wretchedness". My oldest son has made a mess of his life and his wife has left him.
My husband's nerves are even worse than mine. I have kept the nature of his attacks from you for over 20 years but they have broken me at last I could not go out to select a book for you this year. Pardon me. I could not even write this if I had not been a hypodermic. The war situation kills me along with many other things.
I expect conscription will come in and they will take my second son and then I will give up all effort to recover because I shall have nothing to live for. In , the Canadian Prime Minister William Lyon Mackenzie King introduced conscription under the National Resources Mobilization Act , but with the caveat that conscripts could only be used in the defence of North America, and only volunteers would be sent overseas.
Mackenzie King scheduled a referendum for 27 April to ask the voters to release him from his promise to only send volunteers overseas, which Montgomery alluded to in her letter mentioning "conscription will come in". In her last entry in her diary on 23 March , Montgomery wrote: "Since then my life has been hell, hell, hell. My mind is gone — everything in the world I lived for has gone — the world has gone mad.
I shall be driven to end my life. Oh God, forgive me. Nobody dreams of what my awful position is. In the last year of her life, Montgomery completed what she intended to be a ninth book featuring Anne, titled The Blythes Are Quoted. It included fifteen short stories many of which were previously published that she revised to include Anne and her family as mainly peripheral characters; forty-one poems most of which were previously published that she attributed to Anne and to her son Walter, who died as a soldier in the Great War; and vignettes featuring the Blythe family members discussing the poems.
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Lucy Maud Montgomery Short Stories, to by L. M. Montgomery - Free Ebook
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