"And I learned what is obvious to a child. That life is simply a collection of little lives, each lived one day at a time. That each day should be spent finding beauty in flowers and poetry and talking to animals. That a day spent with dreaming and sunsets and refreshing breezes cannot be bettered."
"Does she scare you a little? Good. She should make you fear her love, so that when she lets you be apart of it, you won’t take it lightly. She should remind you of the power that beauty brings, that storms reside in her veins, and that she still wants you in the middle of it all. Do not take this soul for granted, for she is fierce, and she can take you places that you never thought you could go; but she is still loving in the midst of it all, like the calm rain after a storm, she can bring life. Learn her, and cherish her, respect her, and love her; for she is so much more than a pretty face, she is a soul on fire."
"You can’t understand. You’re using the language of reason, not of the heart; you live in a world of abstractions."
"Fleete could not speak, he could only snarl, and his snarls were those of a wolf, not of a man. The human spirit must have been giving way all day and have died out in the twilight. We were dealing with a beast that had once been Fleete…"
- The Mark of the Beast, by Rudyard Kipling, taken from Horror Stories, edited by Darryl Jones.
Gif via giphy.com
"When a thing’s gone, it’s gone. It’s over and done with. Let it go then! Ignore it, and comfort yourself, if you do want comforting, with the thought that you never do recover the same thing that you lose. It’s always a new thing. The moment it leaves you it’s changed."
"But happiness is brittle, and if men and circumstances don’t destroy it, it is threatened by ghosts."
"Hallo, Rabbit,” he said, “is that you?”
"Let’s pretend it isn’t,” said Rabbit, “and see what happens."
"Autumn is a second Spring, when every leaf is a flower."
— Albert Camus
The human heart is like a night bird. Silently waiting for something, and when the time comes, it flies straight toward it.
— Haruki Murakami, from Colorless Tsukuru Tazaki and His Years of Pilgrimage (Knopf, 2014)
"How, in the contemporary period, can we evoke the imagery that communicates the most profound and most richly developed sense of experiencing life? These images must point past themselves to that ultimate truth which must be told: that life does not have one absolutely fixed meaning. These images must point past all meanings given, beyond all definitions and relationships, to that really ineffable mystery that is just the existence, the being of ourselves and of our world. If we give that mystery an exact meaning we diminish the experience of its real depth. But when a poet carries the mind into a context of meanings and then pitches it past those, one knows that marvellous rapture that comes from going past all categories of definition. Here we sense the function of metaphor that allows us to make a journey we could not otherwise make …"
— Joseph Campbell, Thou Art That, p. 8-9
passions form labyrinths in which
we lose and find and
then lose ourselves again."
Bernhard Schlink, from The Reader
(Vintage International, 1995)
"Your soul is blowing apart."
Detail from Edward Gorey’s cover of the Anchor 1950s edition of Le Grand Meaulnes, dubbed The Wanderer.
“The novel’s takeaway, for me, is a don’t-look-back realisation most teenagers have, at some point, wherein they recognise that everything they thought was the best—or the most important, or the worst thing ever—was actually mundane, trivial. That’s a sobering feeling, even when it comes to the vagaries of young love, the ache that feels like a hole in the stomach.”
J. C. Gabel on remembering Alain-Fournier’s Le Grand Meaulnes on the centenary of its author’s death.
"For a moment I was free of feeling. Love, hate, jealousy. And it all felt like…happiness."
— Graham Greene, The End Of The Affair
"This is an important point about symbols: they do not refer to historical events; they refer through historical events to spiritual or psychological principles and powers that are of yesterday, today, and tomorrow, and that are everywhere."
— Joseph Campbell, Goddesses: Mysteries of the Feminine Divine