Blog Archives

Quote of the day: 2/26/13

“So avoid using the word ‘very’ because it’s lazy. A man is not very tired, he is exhausted. Don’t use very sad, use morose. Language was invented for one reason, boys – to woo women – and, in that endeavor, laziness will not do. It also won’t do in your essays”.

-N.H. Kleinbaum, Dead Poets Society

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Hymn to Intellectual Beauty by Percy Bysshe Shelley

I

THE AWFUL shadow of some unseen Power

  Floats though unseen among us,—visiting
  This various world with as inconstant wing
As summer winds that creep from flower to flower,—
Like moonbeams that behind some piny mountain shower,         5
    It visits with inconstant glance
    Each human heart and countenance;
Like hues and harmonies of evening,—
    Like clouds in starlight widely spread,—
    Like memory of music fled,—        10
    Like aught that for its grace may be
Dear, and yet dearer for its mystery.
II

Spirit of BEAUTY, that dost consecrate

  With thine own hues all thou dost shine upon
  Of human thought or form,—where art thou gone?        15
Why dost thou pass away and leave our state,
This dim vast vale of tears, vacant and desolate?
    Ask why the sunlight not for ever
    Weaves rainbows o’er yon mountain-river,
Why aught should fail and fade that once is shown,        20
    Why fear and dream and death and birth
    Cast on the daylight of this earth
    Such gloom,—why man has such a scope
For love and hate, despondency and hope?
III

No voice from some sublimer world hath ever

       25
  To sage or poet these responses given—
  Therefore the names of Demon, Ghost, and Heaven,
Remain the records of their vain endeavour,
Frail spells—whose uttered charm might not avail to sever,
    From all we hear and all we see,        30
    Doubt, chance, and mutability.
Thy light alone—like mist o’er mountains driven,
    Or music by the night-wind sent
    Through strings of some still instrument,
    Or moonlight on a midnight stream,        35
Gives grace and truth to life’s unquiet dream.
IV

Love, Hope, and Self-esteem, like clouds depart

  And come, for some uncertain moments lent.
  Man were immortal, and omnipotent,
Didst thou, unknown and awful as thou art,        40
Keep with thy glorious train firm state within his heart.
    Thou messenger of sympathies,
    That wax and wane in lovers’ eyes—
Thou—that to human thought art nourishment,
    Like darkness to a dying flame!        45
    Depart not as thy shadow came,
    Depart not—lest the grave should be,
Like life and fear, a dark reality.
V

While yet a boy I sought for ghosts, and sped

  Through many a listening chamber, cave and ruin,        50
  And starlight wood, with fearful steps pursuing
Hopes of high talk with the departed dead.
I called on poisonous names with which our youth is fed;
    I was not heard—I saw them not—
    When musing deeply on the lot        55
Of life, at that sweet time when winds are wooing
    All vital things that wake to bring
    News of birds and blossoming,—
    Sudden, thy shadow fell on me;
I shrieked, and clasped my hands in ecstasy!        60
VI

I vowed that I would dedicate my powers

  To thee and thine—have I not kept the vow?
  With beating heart and streaming eyes, even now
I call the phantoms of a thousand hours
Each from his voiceless grave: they have in visioned bowers        65
    Of studious zeal or love’s delight
    Outwatched with me the envious night—
They know that never joy illumed my brow
    Unlinked with hope that thou wouldst free
    This world from its dark slavery,        70
    That thou—O awful LOVELINESS,
Wouldst give whate’er these words cannot express.
VII

The day becomes more solemn and serene

  When noon is past—there is a harmony
  In autumn, and a lustre in its sky,        75
Which through the summer is not heard or seen,
As if it could not be, as if it had not been!
    Thus let thy power, which like the truth
    Of nature on my passive youth
Descended, to my onward life supply        80
    Its calm—to one who worships thee,
    And every form containing thee,
    Whom, SPIRIT fair, thy spells did bind
To fear himself, and love all human kind.

quote of the day: 2/13/13

“People fall so in love with their pain, they can’t leave it behind. The same as the stories they tell. We trap ourselves”.

-From Haunted by Chuck Palahniuk

Quote of the day: 2/7/13

127. They that love beyond the World, cannot be separated by it.

128. Death cannot kill, what never dies.

129. Nor can Spirits ever be divided that love and live in the same Divine Principle; the Root and Record of their Friendship.

130. If Absence be not Death, neither is theirs.

131. Death is but Crossing the World, as Friends do the Seas; They live in one another still.

132. For they must needs be present, that love and live in that which is Omnipresent.

133. In this Divine Glass, they see Face to Face; and their Converse is Free, as well as Pure.

134. This is the Comfort of Friends, that though they may be said to Die, yet their Friendship and Society are, in the best Sense, ever present, because Immortal.

-From More Fruits of Solitude by William Penn

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Quote of the day: 2/4/13

“A man gains a drop of blood per day from eating.
Each night, he gets up to slash himself
Across the face and wrist.
He must be bitten by ten thousand mosquitoes.
He sucks and he sucks.
Where would all that blood go otherwise?
Once a month, a woman drops a teacup on the floor,
A fine teacup with bones inside it.
Vietnamese and Germans now speak the same language.

-from Linh Dinh’s “Conversation Table” which is published in All Around What Empties Out

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Quote of the day: 1/31/13

“To be left alone on the tightrope of youthful unknowing is to experience the excruciating beauty of full freedom and the threat of eternal indecision. Few, if any, survive their teens. Most surrender to the vague but murderous pressure of adult conformity. It becomes easier to die and avoid conflict than to maintain a constant battle with the superior forces of maturity”.

-From I Know why the Caged Bird Sings by Maya Angelou

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Quote of the day: 1/29/13

“It’s a strange thing, but when you are dreading something, and would give anything to slow down time, it has a disobliging habit of speeding up”.

-From Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire

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Quote of the day: 1/28/13

“We are not like that. We know that no one ever seizes power with the intention of relinquishing it. Power is not a means, it is an end. One does not establish a dictatorship in order to safeguard a revolution; one makes the revolution in order to establish the dictatorship. The object of persecution is persecution. The object of terrorism is terrorism. The object of oppression is oppression. The object of torture is torture. The object of murder is murder. The object of power is power. Now do you begin to understand me?”

-From 1984 by George Orwell

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From the film adaptation of 1984

1984

Personal notes: Orwell’s 1984 is probably the single most influential novel that I read during high school. It completely reignited my love for literature and pushed me to read genres that I had not previously looked into. Cliche as is sounds,  it taught me lessons about questioning authority, thinking for myself, and inspired me to write in ways that I thought to be ‘vulgar’ or ‘manly’ previously. This is one of those pieces that I credit for changing me in ways that I never really thought that I could be changed. I’m certainly glad that I read it at the time of my life that I did.

quote of the day: 1/27/13

“People aren’t either wicked or noble. They’re like chef salads, with good things and bad things chopped and mixed together in a vinaigrette of confusion or conflict”.

-Lemony Snicket, The Grim Grotto

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Personal notes: The Lemony Snicket books are always something that I can leaf through when I need a smile. I love how the entire series is completely grim and morose, yet peppered with so much humor and wit. Snicket has a rare way of shining light upon the little truths of life in a simplistic and almost childlike way. His writing has always been something that I’ve deemed as special because it’s quirky and completely its own.

Quote of the day: 1/25/13

“This fall I think you’re riding for—it’s a special kind of fall, a horrible kind. The man falling isn’t permitted to feel or hear himself hit bottom. He just keeps falling and falling. The whole arrangement’s designed for men who, at some time or other in their lives, were looking for something their own environment couldn’t supply them with. Or they thought their own environment couldn’t supply them with. So they gave up looking. They gave it up before they ever really even got started.”

-From Catcher in the Rye by J.D. Salinger

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Personal notes: J.D. Salinger’s Catcher in the Rye is the quintessential “lost teenager” book that resonated really well with me during high school. I have to admit, I had the biggest crush on the fictional character Holden Caulfield because I could really relate to how he kind of drifts through life, by just barley skating by. This is a favorite “classic” of mine.