Staring out of death

In Telemachus Stephen remembers a ghostly light playing about his mother's face as she lay dying. He thinks of it again in Proteus: "Bridebed, childbed, bed of death, ghostcandled." His thoughts in Telemachus make clear that this spectacle was a source of the nightmare that has turned his mother into a vampirish ghoul: "Her glazing eyes, staring out of death, to shake and bend my soul. On me alone. The ghostcandle to light her agony. Ghostly light on the tortured face. Her hoarse loud breath rattling in horror, all prayed on their knees." Several phrases here strongly evoke the ghost of Hamlet's father.

JH 2011

Patrick Allen as the ghost in Hamlet. Source: