Cruelty has a human heartAnd jealousy a human face,Terror the human form divine,And secrecy the human dress. The human dress is forged iron,The human form a fiery forge,The human face a furnace seal’d,The human heart its hungry gorge. — William Blake, from “The Divine Image,” Songs of Innocence and of Experience. (1789)
For, after all, how do we know that two and two make four? Or that the force of gravity works? Or that the past is unchangeable? If both the past and the external world exist only in the mind, and if the mind itself is controllable – what then? ― George Orwell, 1984. (Signet Classic… Continue reading George Orwell
Poetry may make us from time to time a little more aware of the deeper unnamed feelings which form the substratum of our being to which we rarely penetrate for our lives are mostly a constant evasion of ourselves. ― T.S. Eliot
She lacks the indefinable charm of weakness. It is the feet of clay that make the gold of the image precious. ― Oscar Wilde, The Picture of Dorian Gray. (Modern Library; Modern Library edition June 1, 1998) Originally published June 20th 1890.
I feel insignificant, lost, but exultant. — Virginia Woolf, The Waves. (Harvest Books 1978) Originally published October 8th 1931.
What a piece of work is a man! How noble inreason, how infinite in faculty! In form and movinghow express and admirable! In action how like an Angel!in apprehension how like a god! The beauty of theworld! The paragon of animals! And yet to me, what isthis quintessence of dust? Man delights not me; no,nor… Continue reading William Shakespeare
Beneath my eyes opens—a book; I see to the bottom; the heart—I see to the depths. I know what loves are trembling into fire; how jealousy shoots its green flashes hither and thither; how intricately love crosses love; love makes knots; love brutally tears them apart. I have been knotted; I have been torn apart.… Continue reading Virginia Woolf
Tonight I lie awake and runyour absence through my fingers:here’s the touch of you,your warmth and give,our conspiracy of flightlessness. — Michael Symmons Roberts, from “Grounded,” Corpus. (Jonathan Cape / Random House; New edition July 20, 2004)
It soared, a bird, it held its flight, a swift pure cry, soar silver orb it leaped serene, speeding, sustained, to come, don’t spin it out too long long breath he breath long life, soaring high, high resplendent, aflame, crowned, high in the effulgence symbolistic, high, of the ethereal bosom, high, of the high vast… Continue reading James Joyce
Did I say that she was beautiful? I was wrong. Beauty is too tame a notion; it evokes only faces in magazines. A lovely eloquence, a calming symmetry; none of that describes this woman’s face. So perhaps I should assume I cannot do it justice with words. Suffice it to say that it would break… Continue reading Clive Barker