Adélia Prado: Our verbs are not eternal

Woman-571715_1280

Dear God,
don't punish me for saying
my life was so lovely!
We're human,
our verbs have tenses,
they're not like Yours,
eternal.


Adélia Prado (1935—, Brazilian poet), "Woman at Nightfall" (2013), translated by Ellen Doré Watson

Ó Deus,
não me castigue se falo
minha vida foi tão bonita!
Somos humanos,
nossos verbos têm tempos,
não são como o Vosso,
eterno.

"Mulher ao cair da tarde"

 

 

Photo by Barbara Jackson on Pixabay


Lin Yutang: It was a good show

People-2583943_1920

One can learn such a lot and enjoy such a lot in seventy years, and three generations is a long, long time to see human follies and acquire human wisdom. Anyone who is wise and has lived long enough to witness the changes of fashion and morals and politics through the rise and fall of three generations should be perfectly satisfied to rise from his seat and go away saying, 'It was a good show,' when the curtain falls.

Lin Yutang (1895–1976), The Importance of Living (1937)

 

Photo by StockSnap on Pixabay


Tolkien: Peril, sorrow, and the shadow of death can bestow dignity and sometimes wisdom

Refugee-1226610_1920

It is one of the lessons of fairy-stories (if we can speak of the lessons of things that do not lecture) that on callow, lumpish, and selfish youth peril, sorrow, and the shadow of death can bestow dignity, and even sometimes wisdom.

J.R.R. Tolkien (1892-1973), from lecture On Fairy Stories

 

Photo of a young Afghan refugee by Franz, fsHH on Pixabay


Emily Dickinson: Color, caste, denomination—these are time's affair

5871370

Color - Caste - Denomination -
These - are Time's Affair -
Death's diviner Classifying
Does not know they are -
 
As in sleep - all Hue forgotten -
Tenets - put behind -
Death's large - Democratic fingers
Rub away the Brand -
 
If Circassian - He is careless -
If He put away
Chrysalis of Blonde - or Umber -
Equal Butterfly -
 
They emerge from His Obscuring -
What Death - knows so well -
Our minuter intuitions -
Deem unplausible
 
Emily Dickinson (1830–1886)
 
Photo by Hellerhoff, Wikimedia Commons

Kaysen: In the parallel universe

Bars-929375_960_720

In the parallel universe the laws of physics are suspended. What goes up does not necessarily come down….Time, too, is different. It may run in circles, flow backward, skip about from now to then….

Another odd feature of the parallel universe is that although it is invisible from this side, once you are in it you can easily see the world you came from….

Every window on Alcatraz has a view of San Francisco.

Susanna Kaysen (1948–), Girl, Interrupted

 

Photo by Gianni Crestani at Pixabay