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Main > Fairy tale > All authors > Andersen Hans Christian > Fairy tale "The Windmill"

The Windmill

Out in the world thoughts come, too, but they're not my sort; as far as I can see, I cannot make out anything like me. Those wingless houses, that can't make a noise in their throats, have thoughts, too, and these sometimes come to my thoughts, and make love to them, as people call it. Yes, it's very strange, but there are many strange things. Some change has come over me, or inside me, something is different in the working of the mill. It seems as if the one half, the father, has altered and got an even gentler and more affectionate mate - young and good as before, but more tender and gentle through the course of time. The bitter has somehow passed away, and everything is much more pleasant.

"The days pass, and the days come, always forward to brightness and happiness, until the day comes when it will be all over with me and yet not entirely over. I'll have to be torn down so that I can be built up again, new and better; I shall cease, but I'll still live! Become a different being, and yet be the same! Enlightened as I am with sun, moon, wax, oil, and tallow, I still find that difficult to understand. My old timbers and brickwork will rise again from the dust!

"I hope I'll be able to keep my old thoughts, the Miller, the mother, the great ones and little ones - the family, as I call all that great and little company of thoughts; because I cannot do without them.

"And I must also remain myself , with my throat in my chest, wings on my head, and the balcony around my waist; otherwise I wouldn't know myself, and other people wouldn't know me and say, "There's the Mill on the hill, a proud sight to see, and yet not proud at all!"

That's what the Mill said. It said a great many more things, too, but that's the most important part of it.

And the days came and the days passed, and yesterday was the last day. Then the Mill caught fire. The flames shot up: they whipped in; they whipped out; they licked beams and planks and ate them up. The Mill disappeared, and only a heap of ashes remained.

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