Her antiquity in preceding and surviving succeeding tellurian generations: her nocturnal predominance: her satellitic dependence: her luminary reflection: her constancy under all her phases, rising and setting by her appointed times, waxing and waning: the forced invariability of her aspect: her indeterminate response to inaffirmative interrogation: her potency over effluent and refluent waters: her power to enamour, to mortify, to invest with beauty, to render insane, to incite to and aid delinquency: the tranquil inscrutability of her visage: the terribility of her isolated dominant resplendent propinquity: her omens of tempest and of calm: the stimulation of her light, her motion and her presence: the admonition of her craters, her arid seas, her silence: her splendour, when visible: her attraction, when invisible.
>>7602510 For the moon never beams, without bringing me dreams Of the beautiful Annabel Lee; And the stars never rise, but I feel the bright eyes Of the beautiful Annabel Lee; And so, all the night-tide, I lie down by the side Of my darling—my darling—my life and my bride, In her sepulchre there by the sea— In her tomb by the sounding sea.
"I am," he said. He was staring at me, and I could see the corners of his eyes crinkling. "I'm in love with you, and I'm not in the business of denying myself the simple pleasure of saying true things. I'm in love with you, and I know that love is just a shout into the void, and that oblivion is inevitable, and that we're all doomed and that there will come a day when all our labor has been returned to dust, and I know the sun will swallow the only earth we'll ever have, and I am in love with you.”
>>7602512 I've never fully understood this. I love The Dead for the beauty of its prose but I recall earlier passages being better. The one that stood out was when he looks up the staircase at his wife.
And past them, the criminal lying in the blue lakes of acid, The road between the two hills, upward slowly, The flames patterned in lacquer, crimen est actio, The limbo of chopped ice and saw-dust, And I bathed myself with acid to free myself of the hell ticks, Scales, fallen louse eggs. Palux Laerna, the lake of bodies, aqua morta, of limbs fluid, and mingled, like fish heaped in a bin, and here an arm upward, clutching a fragment of marble, And the embryos, in flux, new inflow, submerging, Here an arm upward, trout, submerged by the eels; and from the bank, the stiff herbage the dry nobbled path, saw many known, and unknown, for an instant; submerging, The face gone, generation.
"He took up her stiff head out of the leaves and held it or he reached to hold what cannot be held, what already ran among the mountains at once terrible and of a great beauty, like flowers that feed on flesh. What blood and bone are made of but can themselves not make on any altar nor by any wound of war. What we may well believe has power to cut and shape and hollow out the dark form of the world surely if wind can, if rain can. But which cannot be held never be held and is no flower but is swift and a huntress and the wind itself is in terror of it and the world cannot lose it."
What I heard was but the melody of children at play, nothing but that, and so limpid was the air that within this vapor of blended voices, majestic and minute, remote and magically near, frank and divinely enigmatic—one could hear now and then, as if released, an almost articulate spurt of vivid laughter, or the crack of a bat, or the clatter of a toy wagon, but it was all really too far for the eye to distinguish any movement in the lightly etched streets. I stood listening to that musical vibration from my lofty slope, to those flashes of separate cries with a kind of demure murmur for background, and then I knew that the hopelessly poignant thing was not Lolita’s absence from my side, but the absence of her voice from that concord.
Sunset found her squatting in the grass, groaning. Every stool was looser than the one before, and smelled fouler. By the time the moon came up she was shitting brown water. The more she drank, the more she shat, but the more she shat, the thirstier she grew, and her thirst sent her crawling to the stream to suck up more water.
"And they are dancing, the board floor slamming under the jackboots and the fiddlers grinning hideously over their canted pieces. Towering over them all is the judge and he is naked dancing, his small feet lively and quick and now in doubletime and bowing to the ladies, huge and pale and hairless, like an enormous infant. He never sleeps, he says. He says he’ll never die. He bows to the fiddlers and sashays backwards and throws back his head and laughs deep in his throat and he is a great favorite, the judge. He wafts his hat and the lunar dome of his skull passes palely under the lamps and he swings about and takes possession of one of the fiddles and he pirouettes and makes a pass, two passes, dancing and fiddling at once. His feet are light and nimble. He never sleeps. He says that he will never die. He dances in light and in shadow and he is a great favorite. He never sleeps, the judge. He is dancing, dancing. He says that he will never die."
But while Govinda with astonishment, and yet drawn by great love and expectation, obeyed his words, bent down closely to him and touched his forehead with his lips, something miraculous happened to him. While his thoughts were still dwelling on Siddhartha’s wondrous words, while he was still struggling in vain and with reluctance to think away time, to imagine Nirvana and Sansara as one, while even a certain contempt for the words of his friend was fighting in him against an immense love and veneration, this happened to him: He no longer saw the face of his friend Siddhartha, instead he saw other faces, many, a long sequence, a flowing river of faces, of hundreds, of thousands, which all came and disappeared, and yet all seemed to be there simultaneously, which all constantly changed and renewed themselves, and which were still all Siddhartha. He saw the face of a fish, a carp, with an infinitely painfully opened mouth, the face of a dying fish, with fading eyes—he saw the face of a new-born child, red and full of wrinkles, distorted from crying—he saw the face of a murderer, he saw him plunging a knife into the body of another person—he saw, in the same second, this criminal in bondage, kneeling and his head being chopped off by the executioner with one blow of his sword—he saw the bodies of men and women, naked in positions and cramps of frenzied love—he saw corpses stretched out, motionless, cold, void—he saw the heads of animals, of boars, of crocodiles, of elephants, of bulls, of birds—he saw gods, saw Krishna, saw Agni—he saw all of these figures and faces in a thousand relationships with one another, each one helping the other, loving it, hating it, destroying it, giving re-birth to it, each one was a will to die, a passionately painful confession of transitoriness, and yet none of them died, each one only transformed, was always re-born, received evermore a new face, without any time having passed between the one and the other face—and all of these figures and faces rested, flowed, generated themselves, floated along and merged with each other, and they were all constantly covered by something thin, without individuality of its own, but yet existing, like a thin glass or ice, like a transparent skin, a shell or mold or mask of water, and this mask was smiling, and this mask was Siddhartha’s smiling face, which he, Govinda, in this very same moment touched with his lips. And, Govinda saw it like this, this smile of the mask, this smile of oneness above the flowing forms, this smile of simultaneousness above the thouSiddhartha: An Open-Source Reader 135 Chapter 12. Govinda sand births and deaths, this smile of Siddhartha was precisely the same, was precisely of the same kind as the quiet, delicate, impenetrable, perhaps benevolent, perhaps mocking, wise, thousand-fold smile of Gotama, the Buddha, as he had seen it himself with great respect a hundred times. Like this, Govinda knew, the perfected ones are smiling
>>7602510 Of Paradise, so late thir happie seat, Wav'd over by that flaming Brand, the Gate With dreadful Faces throng'd and fierie Armes: Som natural tears they drop'd, but wip'd them soon; The World was all before them, where to choose Thir place of rest, and Providence thir guide: They hand in hand with wandring steps and slow, Through Eden took thir solitarie way.
Il faut que je le répète, car je ne veux vraiment pas que vous vous mépreniez: nous ne l’avons jamais fait en réalité. Nous n’en avons même pas parlé, Jack et moi. Je ne suis même pas sûre qu’il accepterait. Mais dans mon fantasme, dès que nous entrerions dans ce bureau, que la porte serait refermée et les lumières éteintes, les bisous et les câlins seraient terminés. C’est moi qui prendrais les rênes.
Only somewhat relevant to the thread, but does anyone have that passage which describes Nietzsche's sad daily routine (nearly blind, voice throaty from disuse), and ends with a statement to the effect of "in these conditions he would write" in order to juxtapose the grandeur of his philosophy with the shittiness of his existence? The whole thing was achingly beautiful and it portrayed Nietzsche in this sympathetic and pathetic, but also noble and vaguely uplifting, light, as if he managed to find refuge from painful mediocrity in the heroics of his work. It compacted all of Stoner into a simple, elegant few paragraphs; few passages have affected me more deeply, and that's coming from someone who's barely even interested in Nietzsche. I wish I could find it.
"He is shy, about five-foot-eight, but a little stooped, almost blind, reserved, unaffected, and especially polite; he lives in modest boarding houses in Sils Maria, Nizza, Mentone, Rome, Turin. Carefully the myopic man sits down to a table; carefully, the man with the sensitive stomach considers every item on the menu: whether the tea is not too strong, the food not spiced too much, for every mistake in his diet upsets his sensitive digestion, and every transgression in his nourishment wreaks havoc with his quivering nerves for days. No glass of wine, no glass of beer, no alcohol, no coffee at his place, no cigar and no cigarette after his meal, nothing that stimulates, refreshes, or rests him: only the short meager meal and a little urbane, unprofound conversation in a soft voice with an occasional neighbor (as a man speaks who for years has been unused to talking and is afraid of being asked too much). "And up again into the small, narrow, modest, coldly furnished chambre garnie, where innumerable notes, pages, writings, and proofs are piled up on the table, but no flower, no decoration. Back in a corner, a heavy and graceless wooden trunk, his only possession, with the two shirts and the other worn suit. Otherwise only books and manuscripts, and on a tray innumerable bottles and jars and potions: against the migraines, which often render him all but senseless for hours, against his stomach cramps, against spasmodic vomiting, against the slothful intestines, and above all the dreadful sedatives against his insomnia, chloral hydrate and Veronal. A frightful arsenal of poisons and drugs, yet the only helpers in the empty silence of this strange room in which he never rests except in brief and artificially conquered sleep. Wrapped in his overcoat and a woolen scarf (for the wretched stove smokes only and does not give warmth), his fingers freezing, his double glasses pressed close to the paper, his hurried hand writes for hours--words the dim eyes can hardly decipher. For hours he sits like this and writes until his eyes burn."
>>7603066 I've never read any McCarthy because of passages like these. I've seen several of them, always quoted in "beautiful prose" threads. I can't buy this, not the whole of it. It was going great, heartrending, deep, until about the middle of the paragraph and then became too much. I got it, what are you doing, don't ruin it, it was perfect, I got it man, restrain yourself, save some for later.
He's like: "You like that, don't you? You like my crème brulée? It's sweet and rich, bet you didn't even expect such goodness right at this point, after all, I've been pretty sparse and rugged up to this point, I've fed you cornbread all this time so the crème brulée would seem sweeter. Oh, you like it? Have some more! Still like it? One more spoonful, that's it, gulp it up, one more, then one more, you know you can't get enough of my creative man-juice, can you, you're a little purple prose bitch, aren't you?" And all this while you, the reader-cum-cumdumpster, are gagging and feeling demeaned. That's how I felt, at least.
Is it all like this? I know, I should read and see for myself. I just can't drag myself through a lot of this. It's beautiful, then it's too much.
Me too, I don’t think that it is bad. The only problem is that it is artificial, and I suppose that most of the book is written in a realistic style, so that kind of expression is not what you would expect from people on real life, let alone young teenagers.
But if you close your eyes to the artificiality and think that this is, after all, fiction, and that the world of books is never quite the real world on which we breathe under the sun then this dialogue is not bad. It might be artificial or cliché, but is not bad.
I was a Flower of the mountain yes when I put the rose in my hair like the Andalusian girls used or shall I wear a red yes and how he kissed me under the Moorish wall and I thought well as well him as another and then I asked him with my eyes to ask again yes and then he asked me would I yes to say yes my mountain flower and first I put my arms around him yes and drew him down to me so he could feel my breasts all perfume yes and his heart was going like mad and yes I said yes I will Yes.
I've always been partial to tge opening of DH Lawrence's 'The Rainbow'.
'So the Brangwens came and went without fear of necessity, working hard because of the life that was in them, not for want of the money. Neither were they thriftless. They were aware of the last halfpenny, and instinct made them not waste the peeling of their apple, for it would help to feed the cattle. But heaven and earth was teeming around them, and how should this cease? They felt the rush of the sap in spring, they knew the wave which cannot halt, but every year throws forward the seed to begetting, and, falling back, leaves the young-born on the earth. They knew the intercourse between heaven and earth, sunshine drawn into the breast and bowels, the rain sucked up in the daytime, nakedness that comes under the wind in autumn, showing the birds' nests no longer worth hiding. Their life and interrelations were such; feeling the pulse and body of the soil, that opened to their furrow for the grain, and became smooth and supple after their ploughing, and clung to their feet with a weight that pulled like desire, lying hard and unresponsive when the crops were to be shorn away. The young corn waved and was silken, and the lustre slid along the limbs of the men who saw it. They took the udder of the cows, the cows yielded milk and pulse against the hands of the men, the pulse of the blood of the teats of the cows beat into the pulse of the hands of the men. They mounted their horses, and held life between the grip of their knees, they harnessed their horses at the wagon, and, with hand on the bridle-rings, drew the heaving of the horses after their will.'
Argus, the dog of his Ulysses, sees his master once more after his twenty years absence:
Thus, near the gates conferring as they drew, Argus, the dog, his ancient master knew: He not unconscious of the voice and tread, Lifts to the sound his ear, and rears his head; Bred by Ulysses, nourish’d at his board, But, ah! not fated long to please his lord; To him, his swiftness and his strength were vain; The voice of glory call’d him o’er the main. Till then in every sylvan chase renown’d, With Argus, Argus, rung the woods around; With him the youth pursued the goat or fawn, Or traced the mazy leveret o’er the lawn. Now left to man’s ingratitude he lay, Unhoused, neglected in the public way; And where on heaps the rich manure was spread, Obscene with reptiles, took his sordid bed.
He knew his lord; he knew, and strove to meet; In vain he strove to crawl and kiss his feet; Yet (all he could) his tail, his tears, his eyes, Salute his master, and confess his joys. Soft pity touch’d the mighty master’s soul; Adown his cheek a tear unbidden stole, Stole unperceived: he turn’d his head and dried The drop humane: then thus impassion’d cried:
“What noble beast in this abandon’d state Lies here all helpless at Ulysses’ gate? His bulk and beauty speak no vulgar praise: If, as he seems, he was in better days, Some care his age deserves; or was he prized For worthless beauty? therefore now despised; Such dogs and men there are, mere things of state; And always cherish’d by their friends, the great.”
“Not Argus so, (Eumaeus thus rejoin’d,) But served a master of a nobler kind, Who, never, never shall behold him more! Long, long since perish’d on a distant shore! Oh had you seen him, vigorous, bold, and young, Swift as a stag, and as a lion strong: Him no fell savage on the plain withstood, None ‘scaped him bosom’d in the gloomy wood; His eye how piercing, and his scent how true, To wind the vapour on the tainted dew! Such, when Ulysses left his natal coast: Now years unnerve him, and his lord is lost! The women keep the generous creature bare, A sleek and idle race is all their care: The master gone, the servants what restrains? Or dwells humanity where riot reigns? Jove fix’d it certain, that whatever day Makes man a slave, takes half his worth away.”
This said, the honest herdsman strode before; The musing monarch pauses at the door: The dog, whom Fate had granted to behold His lord, when twenty tedious years had roll’d, Takes a last look, and having seen him, dies; So closed for ever faithful Argus’ eyes!
honestly the most a passage of literature made me contemplate. When Hazel said "why cant waffles be a dinner food" I honestly had to put the book down and go to the pub, I honestly spent the night getting drunk on hard liquor and I honestly started to cry as I realized everything is just manufactured honestly
>>7606239 not the anon you replied to but it's Molly thinking that Bloom and any other man are really all the same, that she wouldnt be happier or sadder with any other man. It's a pretty sad sentiment, but Joyce expresses it so brilliantly, and hearing Molly's jaded voice saying that she really doesnt love her husband and settled is defeating
Standing up, Alex looked at the endless rows of buildings before him and realized there were things in his apartment, and there were so many things in his apartment, and he imagined that each thing had its own things and those things their own, each collecting more things to put in his apartment. And maybe he was just a thing, a thing in somebody else’s things. And more. He moved through space. There was a likeness to this summer, Alex knew, and to this life, and for a timeless instant a word came to him—one that could describe earth, existence, purpose, in a plane of pluralistic self-invoked philosophical extensions—but was lost as soon as it came
Once, while having sex with his girlfriend Alicia, the theme from Star Wars had gone into Aaron's head and he had suddenly and loudly begun to hum it, which he could not, then, sustain, as he had started to laugh.
He laughed and laughed.
And things changed after that.
Sex became a precarious thing. Often, it could not happen. Songs or tunes, little ditties--tom-tom drum beats, kazoo-y cartoon music--would automatically go into both their heads. They required focus and grave seriousousness of sex, that inner, outer-spacey concentration toward some black and scrappy source, some vague but findable piece of lust--it could not happen anymore.
'Gatsby believed in the green light, the orgastic future that year by year recedes before us. It eluded us then, but that's no matter - tomorrow we will run faster, stretch out our arms further...And one fine morning - So we beat on, boats against the current, borne back ceaselessly into the past.'
There's also a good passage from The Road about how the father takes a minute to realise how fucked up shit actually is, but I don't have a copy on me.
>>7610443 It's a bit of a spoiler, but my take on that passage is that the dead wolf whose head Billy is holding, the wolf he tried to return to its rightful home, represents a kind of old and true order of the world. Everything is become gridded with fences and numbingly vapid cattle, and the wolf is the old, beautiful wildness of the world, a beautiful wildness that we're losing, shown in the death of the wolf.
Despite this I think McCarthy gives us hope in the latter half which you asked about, where he talks about the wolf being untouchable and incorruptible (the intangible element of the wolf is explained further in earlier parts of the book), and that even though the world is changing, we don't fully lose that beautifully ancient thing the wolf stands for.
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