Muriel Spark seems to have seen the world as a stage where all the men and women are merely players having their "moments" on the stage of life. "One's prime is the moment one was born for" she has been known to say, and it is those moments, mere spots in time, that she describes in her fiction. Old people become babes again. School-boys (or girls) grow into their prime. That is the cycle of life that can be traced throughout her work, a pattern of birth, growth, and decay that is akin to the seasons.