“Therefore, dear Sir, love your solitude and try to sing out with the pain it causes you. For those who are near you are far away… and this shows that the space around you is beginning to grow vast…. be happy about your growth, in which of course you can’t take anyone with you, and be gentle with those who stay behind; be confident and calm in front of them and don’t torment them with your doubts and don’t frighten them with your faith or joy, which they wouldn’t be able to comprehend. […] who are afraid of the aloneness that you trust…. and don’t expect any understanding; but believe in a love that is being stored up for you like an inheritance, and have faith that in this love there is a strength and a blessing so large that you can travel as far as you wish without having to step outside it.”
― Rainer Maria Rilke, Letters to a Young Poet
“For thought is a bird of space, that in a cage of words may indeed unfold its wings but cannot fly.”
― Kahlil Gibran
“She felt all right. Her heart was like a drum hanging from piano wire in her chest, slowly, slowly beaten. Her hands and feet were numb, not with cold but with a sultry torpor. Thoughts moved with a tranquil lethargy, her brain a leisurely machine imbedded in swaths of woolly packing.
She felt all right.”
― Richard Matheson
“..we may value foreign elements not only because they are new but because they seem to accord more faithfully with our identity and commitments than anything our homeland can provide.”
Alain de Botton, The Art of Travel
“All who joy would win
Must share it — Happiness was born a twin.”
― George Gordon Byron, Don Juan
“We all live in a house on fire, no fire department to call; no way out, just the upstairs window to look out of while the fire burns the house down with us trapped, locked in it.”
– Tennessee Williams
“Maybe ever’body in the whole damn world is scared of each other.”
– John Steinbeck
“We are healed of a suffering only by experiencing it to the full.”
– Marcel Proust
I must down to the seas again, to the lonely sea and the sky,
And all I ask is a tall ship and a star to steer her by,
And the wheel’s kick and the wind’s song and the white sail’s shaking,
And a grey mist on the sea’s face, and a grey dawn breaking.
I must down to the seas again, for the call of the running tide
Is a wild call and a clear call that may not be denied;
And all I ask is a windy day with the white clouds flying,
And the flung spray and the blown spume, and the sea-gulls crying.
I must down to the seas again, to the vagrant gypsy life,
To the gull’s way and the whale’s way where the wind’s like a whetted knife;
And all I ask is a merry yarn from a laughing fellow-rover
And quiet sleep and a sweet dream when the long trick’s over”
– John Masefield
“We don’t see things as they are, we see them as we are.”
– Anaïs Nin
“No amount of skillful invention can replace the essential element of imagination.”
– Edward Hopper
“Without music to decorate it, time is just a bunch of boring production deadlines or dates by which bills must be paid.”
– Frank Zappa
Complete with back-up singers…
“I believe in everything until it’s disproved. So I believe in fairies, the myths, dragons. It all exists, even if it’s in your mind. Who’s to say that dreams and nightmares aren’t as real as the here and now?”
– John Lennon
“Many people suffer from the fear of finding oneself alone, and so they don’t find themselves at all.”
– Rollo May
“I am of old and young, of the foolish as much as the wise,
Regardless of others, ever regardful of others,
Maternal as well as paternal, a child as well as a man,
Stuffed with the stuff that is coarse, and stuffed with the stuff that is fine, one of the nation, of many nations, the smallest the same and the largest”
― Walt Whitman
“It’s not the men in your life that matters, it’s the life in your men.”
– Mae West
“With no attempt there can be no failure; with no failure no humiliation. So our self-esteem in this world depends entirely on what we back ourselves to be and do. It is determined by the ratio of our actualities to our supposed potentialities.”
– Alain de Botton
“In the great cities we see so little of the world, we drift into our minority. In the little towns and villages there are no minorities; people are not numerous enough. You must see the world there, perforce.”
– W.B. Yeats
“People aren’t either wicked or noble. They’re like chef’s salads, with good things and bad things chopped and mixed together in a vinaigrette of confusion and conflict.”
– Lemony Snicket
I follow Plato only with my mind
Pure beauty strikes me as a little thin
A little cold, however beautiful.
I am in love with what is mixed and impure
Doubtful, dark and hard to disencumber
I want beauty I must dig for, search for.
Pure beauty is beginning and not end
Begin with the sun and drop from sun to cloud
From cloud to tree, and from tree to earth itself
And deeper yet to the earth dark root.
I am in love with what resists my loving
With what I have to labor to make live.
– Robert Francis
“When art critics get together they talk about Form and Structure and Meaning. When artists get together they talk about where you can buy cheap turpentine.”
– Pablo Picasso
“It was piecework, and she was apt to have a family to keep alive; and stern and ruthless economic laws had arranged it that she could only do this by working just as she did, with all her soul upon her work, and with never an instant for a glance at the well-dressed ladies and gentlemen who came to stare at her, as at some wild beast in a menagerie.”
– Upton Sinclair
“Only a few find the way, some don’t recognize it when they do – some… don’t ever want to. “
-The Cheshire Cat
“Loves are like empires: when the idea they are founded on crumbles, they too, fade away.”
– Milan Kundera
“I see myself forever and ever as the ridiculous man, the lonely soul, the wanderer, the restless frustrated artist, the man in love with love, always in search of the absolute, always seeking the unattainable”
– Henry Miller
“I was here, I saw this and it mattered to me.”
– Alain de Botton
Although it’s time to go home.
“How could we forget those ancient myths that stand at the beginning of all races, the myths about dragons that at the last moment are transformed into princesses? Perhaps all the dragons in our lives are princesses who are only waiting to see us act, just once, with beauty and courage.”
– Rainer Maria Rilke, Letters to a Young Poet
I know a place…
High up on a hill, with walls thick and tall…magical.
A fortress guarded on every side by ancient olive trees and wild cats who demand attention when not hunting the field mice.
A quiet place, where you can hear the sound of the sheep’s bells from miles away and the faint whispers of warriors past that rise from the cobblestone pathways.
Their whispers feel like a soft breeze and carry with them the scent of oranges, lemons, magnolias and lavender which grow from every garden in the village.
Bright white are the walls and red are the rooftops – but lush green are the hills which like waves in the ocean, are as vast as the eye can see. A green ocean dotted with ancient whitecaps/houses.
And if you sit quietly enough on the steps of the fortress when the sun begins to leave you for the day, you’ll witness a fire in the sky. Close your eyes for a moment or two, then open as quickly as you can, and you’ll see off in the distance, the (your) dragon coming home to sit beside you.
“The most beautiful experience we can have is the mysterious – the fundamental emotion which stands at the cradle of true art and true science.”
– Albert Einstein
I took this photo in a garden grotto – while exploring its caves. I like that nature has made the bold statement of “IS.”
This is what I have.
The dull hangover of waiting,
the blush of my heart on the damp grass,
the flower-faced moon.
A gull broods on the shore
where a moment ago there were two.
Softly my right hand fondles my left hand
as though it were you.
“I know what I have given you…
I do not know what you have received.”
– Antonio Porchia
I am spending some days exploring/driving inland Spain – away from the busy coastal cities. I like being inland. As when on my road trip through the Cote d’Azur region of France last year, I find myself surrounded by farms, medieval towns and lovely people.