“All the seas of the world tumbled about her heart. He was drawing her into them: he would drown her. She gripped with both hands at the iron railing” Pg. 31 Lines 158-160 “Eveline”
The story of Eveline and her want to abandon the drunken ruins of Dublin that her family and friends have provided comes to a resolution in these three lines. Unfortunately for Eveline Ireland beholds nothing of mystery anymore, and there is no longer entertainment and beauty in her mediocre life. Frank’s promises of a wonderful life in Argentina, however, offer the exact opposite. As she is making her way to the boat to leave, she begins to ponder “all the seas of the world” as they “tumbled about her heart.” Eveline’s second thoughts make her realize that despite being in Argentina her life would be no different. “[Frank] would drown her” in his expectations of a good wife and housekeeper. Because of this Eveline realizes that the life with Frank is no more romantic than a life with a drunken father in Ireland. She becomes scared of the mystery that she lacked because regardless of the beauty, Argentina was not an environment she knew, and, if Eveline was going to be stuck in a motherly role, she figures she should stay in a safe environment. So, “she gripped with both hands the iron railing” leaving Frank and his fantasies by staying in the familiar, yet paralyzing setting of Dublin.