So we turn back through the forest, walk among trees with long blue needles.
It’s silent here, like the silence when the hawk nears.
These are woods that forgive everything but forget nothing.
It is a curious emotion, this certain homesickness I have in mind … It is no simple longing for the home town or country of our birth. The emotion is Janus-faced: we are torn between a nostalgia for the familiar and an urge for the foreign and strange. As often as not, we are homesick most for the places we have never known.
in music, in poetry, and in life, the rest, the pause, the slow movements are essential to comprehending the whole.
But sometimes being human also means pressing your ear to the pavement and listening to the rumor of something far away, something that belongs to all of us, something that might give us enough soul or enough courage, something we take secondhand and build on.
Her unstartled gaze
Beads on him like a sniper’s sites, until
At the clean report of a cracking poplar branch,
She leaps away like luck, over rapid water,
And snowfall scrims the scene like a mist of tears,
Like a migraine, like sweat or blood streaming into your eyes.
A. E. Stallings, from “Epic Simile”
“Quiet friend who has come so far,
feel how your breathing makes more space around you.
Let this darkness be a bell tower
and you the bell. As you ring,
what batters you becomes your strength.
Move back and forth into the change.
What is it like, such intensity of pain?
If the drink is bitter, turn yourself to wine.
In this uncontainable night,
be the mystery at the crossroads of your senses,
the meaning discovered there.
And if the world has ceased to hear you,
say to the silent earth: I flow.
To the rushing water, speak: I am.”
— Rainer Maria Rilke, from Sonnets to Orpheus (translated by A. Barrows and J. Macy)
For the first time in years the tears were streaming down his face. But they were for himself now. He did not care about mouth and eyes and moving hands. He wanted to care, and he could not care. For he had gone away and he could never go back any more. The gates were closed, the sun was gone down, and there was no beauty but the gray beauty of steel that withstands all time. Even the grief he could have borne was left behind in the country of illusion, of youth, of the richness of life, where his winter dreams had flourished. “Long ago,” he said, “long ago, there was something in me, but now that thing is gone. Now that thing is gone, that thing is gone. I cannot cry. I cannot care. That thing will come back no more
Winter Dreams, F. Scott Fitzgerald
I must stop identifying with the seasons, because this English winter will be the death of me.
— Sylvia Plath
Caroline laughs and
It’s raining all day
She loves to be one of the girls
She lives in the place
In the side of our loves
Where nothing is
Ever put straight
She turns herself round
And she smiles and she says
‘This is it’
‘That’s the end of the joke’
And loses herself
In her dreaming and sleep
And her lovers walk
Through in their coats
Pretty in pink
Pretty in Pink Psychedelic Furs
There is no happiness like that of being loved by your fellow-creatures, and feeling that your presence is an addition to their comfort.
— Charlotte Brontë, Jane Eyre