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Rhapsody In The Rain Sparknotes

Decent Essays
During her romance with Robert, Francesca reflects on her relationship with Richard during a bath, and her thoughts at this time strike the heart of the problems in her marriage. “Something as simple as a cold glass of beer at bath time felt so elegant. Why didn't she and Richard live this way? Part of it, she knew, was the inertia of protracted custom. All marriages…are susceptible to that. Custom brings predictability, and predictability carries its own comforts…And there was the farm… But there was something more going on here. Predictability is one thing, fear of change is something else. And Richard was afraid of change, any kind of change, in their marriage” (Waller 88-89). Francesca believe aspects of their marriage could use some change,…show more content…
His first evening back home, he says: “‘You okay, Frannie? You seem a little tired or dreamy or somethin'’” (Waller 121). She tells him that nothing is wrong, but they both know that is far frum the truth. The next day, when Francesca sees Robert’s truck pull away out of town and breaks down crying, “Richard looked over at her. ‘What's wrong, Frannie? Will you please tell me what's wrong with you?’ ‘Richard, I just need some time to myself. I'll be all right in a few minutes.’ Richard tuned in the noon livestock reports, looked over at her, and shook his head” (Waller 125). It is unclear to what extent Francesca and Richard work to fix their relationship, but I am convinced they both made a strong effort. They were never going to be perfect for one another, but they lived a full life together. After Richard’s death, Francesca reflects on this. “Francesca thought of him now and his sturdy kindness, his steady ways, and the even life he had given her” (Waller 17). In the end, it was worth staying in Madison County, but that does not mean it was perfect. In Francesca’s letter to her children, she tells them about her husband’s dying words. “I think Richard knew there was something in me he could not reach, and I sometimes wonder if he found the manila envelope [of records of Francesca and Robert’s affair] when I kept it at home in the bureau. Just before he died, I was sitting by him in a Des Moines hospital, and he said this to me: ‘Francesca, I know you had your own dreams, too. I'm sorry I couldn't give them to you’” (Waller 155-156). No matter how hard Richard tried during his life, he could not be everything Francesca wished he could be, but he wishes he could have been. Richard may never have understood his wife, but there is no doubt he loved her
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