A name tumbling from the sky like a ‘slow-falling arrow’, belonging to and bringing with it her husband whose visits coincide with dead calms at sea allowing him no headway in his cape-conquering quest.

And always the steel-blue feather, perhaps the same that Orlando popped into her hat earlier in the story.

‘The beautiful, glittering name fell out of the sky like a steel-blue feather. She watched it fall, turning and twisting like a slow-falling arrow that cleaves the deep air beautifully.  He was coming, as he always came, in moments of dead calm; when the wave rippled and the spotted leaves fell slowly over her foot in the autumn woods…’

Source: Virginia Woolf, Orlando: A Biography, ed. with an introduction by Rachel Bowlby (Oxford: World’s Classics, 1992), p. 312

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