Do You Like Quotations?

There are those who make the case for quotations. I simply enjoy them, since I like a well turned phrase, and if it holds a nugget of wisdom or inspiration- so much the better.

I suppose some find quotes of nominal interest, but for those who collect, or simply enjoy, the occasional fine quote. I am giving your a few gems today.

“I walk many times in the pleasant fields of the Holy Scriptures, where I pluck up the goodlisome herbs of sentences by pruning, eat them by reading, digest them by musing, and lay them up at length in the high seat of memory by gathering them together, so that so, having tasted their sweetness, I may less perceive the bitterness of life.” ~Queen Elizaebth I

I found many times this quote of Queen Elizabeth the First was often given while severing off the beginning part (to suit modern tastes no doubt); but if the whole is taken, it makes much more sense and has much more to offer.

“The wisdom of the wise and the experience of the ages may be preserved by quotation.” ~Disreali

“To know how to wait is the great secret of success.” ~De Maistre

“Pride, the most dangerous of all faults, proceeds from want of sense, or want of thought.” ~ Wentworth Dillon

“Our thoughts are ours, their ends none of our own.” ~Shakespeare


Autumn Is Ended
~J. Hazard Hartzell~

DOWN drop the painted leaves;
The world lies stripped and wounded, cold and bare;
Piled are the golden sheaves;
And past is every object sweet and fair.

Now faded are the flowers
And grass on sloping hills and tranquil dales;
And songless are the bowers
Where lovers came and breathed their secret tales.

The fruits are ripe and gone;
The fields have lost their wealth and vernal cheer;
The stars throw smiles upon
The full-armed gleaners of the harvest year.

Winds come with chilling breath;
Rains fall, and brooks from woods begin to rise;
Gloom fills the realm of death;
And birds take flight for warmth of southern skies.

There’s nothing bright nor fair,
Save fields of wheat that wear their cloaks of green;
There’s nothing in the air
But chill, where rays of gold and love have been.

The seed of change was sown
Through months, by viewless hands, in field and town;
And Autumn, near his throne,
Lets fall his crowded horn and brazen crown.

The fire burns on the hearth,
Where tempting fruit and charming books abound;
Love opens springs of mirth,
Where radiant hopes and bubbling joys are found.

The skies hang cold and gray;
Among the hills the winds begin to blow;
Herds strike their homeward way,
And earth grows white and strange with flying snow.

Yesterday, we used the unusually warm and sunny November day to visit the hills of southern Ohio. The trees were largely bereft of their leaves, the stubborn oaks holding their last few browned leaves, washing down in the silent forest, like lazy snowflakes that will soon be coming.

We feasted at Bob Evans restaurant before heading home.
It was a day to savor.

The Little Prince Learns Something

I did not read ‘Little Prince‘ books when I was young. In fact there are a good many classic books that I had seemed to overlook, somehow. Madeleine books, Babar, Anatole -these are the ones I was familiar with. It is with pleasure I came across this story and the truths it reveals, and wanted to share it with you…

The Little Prince and the Fox
Written and illustrated by Antoine de Saint Exupéry.
Translated from the French by Katherine Woods. Harcourt, Brace & World, Inc. New York.

It was then that the fox appeared.

“Good morning,” said the fox.
“Good morning,” the little prince responded politely, although when he turned around he saw nothing.
“I am right here,” the voice said, “under the apple tree.”
“Who are you?” asked the little prince, and added, “You are very pretty to look at.”

“I am a fox,” said the fox.
“Come and play with me,” proposed the little prince. “I am so unhappy.”
“I cannot play with you,” the fox said. “I am not tamed.”

“I am looking for friends. What does that mean– ‘tame’?”
“It is an act too often neglected,” said the fox. “It means to establish ties.”
“‘To establish ties’?”
“Just that,” said the fox. “To me, you are still nothing more than a little boy who is just like a hundred thousand other little boys. And I have no need of you. And you, on your part, have no need of me. To you, I am nothing more than a fox like a hundred thousand other foxes. But if you tame me, then we shall need each other. To me, you will be unique in all the world. To you, I shall be unique in all the world…”
“I am beginning to understand,” said the little prince. “There is a flower… I think that she has tamed me…”

The fox gazed at the little prince, for a long time.
“Please – tame me!” he said.
“I want to, very much,” the little prince replied. “But I have not much time. I have friends to discover, and a great many things to understand.”
“One only understands the things that one tames,” said the fox. “Men have no more time to understand anything. They buy things all ready made at the shops. But there is no shop anywhere where one can buy friendship, and so men have no friends any more. If you want a friend, tame me…”

So the little prince tamed the fox. And when the hour of his departure drew near –

“Ah,” said the fox, “I shall cry.”
“It is your own fault,” said the little prince. “I never wished you any sort of harm;but you wanted me to tame you…”
“Yes, that is so,” said the fox.
“But now you are going to cry!” said the little prince.
“Yes, that is so,” said the fox.
“Then it has done you no good at all!”
“It has done me good,” said the fox.

And then he added:
“Go and look again at the roses.You will understand now that yours is unique in all the world. Then come back to say goodbye to me, and I will make you a present of a secret.”

The little prince went away, to look again at the roses.

“You are not at all like my rose,” he said. “As yet you are nothing. No one has tamed you, and you have tamed no one. You are like my fox when I first knew him. He was only a fox like a hundred thousand other foxes. But I have made him my friend, and now he is unique in all the world.”
And the roses were very much embarrassed.

“You are beautiful, but you are empty,” he went on. “One could not die for you.To be sure,an ordinary passerby would think that my rose looked just like you– the rose that belongs to me. But in herself alone she is more important than all the hundreds of you other roses: because it is she that I have watered; because it is she that I have put under the glass globe; because it is she that I have sheltered behind the screen; because it is for her that I have killed the caterpillars (except the two or three that we saved to become butterflies);
because it is she that I have listened to, when she grumbled, or boasted, or ever sometimes when she said nothing. Because she is my rose.”

And he went back to meet the fox.

“Goodbye,” he said.
“Goodbye,” said the fox.”And now here is my secret, a very simple secret: It is only with the heart that one can see rightly; what is essential is invisible to the eye.”

“What is essential is invisible to the eye,”the little prince repeated,so that he would be sure to remember.
“It is the time you have wasted for your rose that makes your rose so important.”
“It is the time I have wasted for my rose–” said the little prince, so that he would be sure to remember.
“Men have forgotten this truth,” said the fox.”But you must not forget it. You become responsible, forever, for what you have tamed. You are responsible for your rose…”
“I am responsible for my rose,”the little prince repeated, so that he would be sure to remember.

… … …

How often do we remember that relationship comes with responsibility? That we are holding someone’s heart, and they are holding ours?

I believe the Biblical concept of covenant most completely outlines relationships and the expectations that are resident within them. ‘Expectations’ is often seen as a word describing something undesirable, when I think it is just the opposite, in reality.

Importance of History

studying history is intellectually enriching and challenging. The most thought-provoking history asks the “why” questions. Why did the McGuffey Eclectic Readers become so popular in the 19th century? Why were women in colonial America taught to read, but less often to write? Answering questions like these moves us to think about literacy as no other form of inquiry can.

~Michael L. Kamil

Autumn Thought

…Therefore, since the world has still
Much good, but much less good than ill,
And while the sun and moon endure
Luck’s a chance, but trouble’s sure,
I’d face it as a wise man would,
And train for ill and not for good,
‘Tis true the stuff I bring for sale
Is not so brisk a brew as ale:
Out of a stem that scored the hand
I wrung it in a weary land.
But take it: if the smack is sour,
The better for the embittered hour;
It should do good to heart and head
When your soul is in my soul’s stead;
And I will friend you, if I may,
In the dark and cloudy day…

~from “Terence, This is Stupid Stuff,” by A. E. Housman, 1896–

Quoted: True and False Politeness

True and False Politeness
[by F.E.W. Harper]

False politeness can cast a glamour over fashionable follies and popular vices and shrink from uttering unpalatable truths, when truth is needed more than flattery.

True politeness, tender as love and faithful as truth, values intrinsic worth more than artificial surroundings. It will stem the current of the world’s disfavor, rather than float ignobly on the tide of popular favor, with the implied disrespect to our common human nature, that it is a flaccid thing to be won by sophistry, and satisfied with shams.

False politeness is an outgrowth from the surface of life. True politeness is the fair outflowing of a kind and thoughtful life, the sweet ripe fruit of a religion which gives to life its best expression and to humanity its crowning glory.

True politeness is broadly inclusive; false politeness narrowly exclusive. …

True politeness has no scornful epithets for classes or races, who, if not organically inferior, have been born under, or environed by inferior conditions. Humanity is God’s child, and to fail in true kindness and respect to the least of His “little ones” is to fail in allegiance to Him.

Contemptuous injustice to man is treason to God, and one of the worst forms of infidelity is to praise Christ with our lips and trample on the least of His brethren with our feet,-to talk sweetly of His love, and embitter the lives of others by cold contempt, and cruel scorn.

Beyond the narrow limitations of social lines are humanity’s broader interests…

If today you believe that your faith is simple and vision clearer than that of other forms of belief, should not the clasp of your hand be warmer, the earnestness of your soul greater, and the throbbings of your heart quicker to clasp the world in your arms and bring it nearer to the great heart of God and His Son, Our Lord Jesus Christ?

…via Collecting My Thoughts

Thoughts I Feel Like Thinking Upon

Pied Beauty

by Gerard Manley Hopkins

GLORY be to God for dappled things,
For skies of couple-color as a brindled cow,
For rose-moles all in stipple upon trout that swim;
Fresh-firecoal chestnut-falls, finches’ wings;
Landscape plotted and pieced, fold, fallow and plough,
And all trades, their gear and tackle and trim.
All things counter, original, spare, strange,
Whatever is fickle, freckled (who knows how?)
With swift, slow; sweet, sour; adazzle, dim.
He fathers-forth whose beauty is past change;
Praise him.

The Two Wisdoms

Wisdom does not mean what we would ordinarily think it to mean. It is not wise sayings, but more like a value system. As noted, the wisdom of the gods of this world is a system predicated on force, violence, threat, fear, ambition, lust, intimidation and the terror of men to preserve themselves and to make their own survival the first law of life. It is the unchallenged premise by which the world lives its life, namely, the avoidance of pain and the pursuit of pleasure. The world makes that the foremost principle of being. The ability to lay down one’s life and not to consider one’s life as dear to oneself is the wisdom of God and is predicated on contemptible weakness and foolishness. The one wisdom lives for itself, its own preservation and its own advantages, while Gods wisdom lives for another; it is selfless. It is the wisdom of the Son of God who never initiated anything in Himself, or for Himself, but lived entirely for the gratification of His Father.
This is contrary to human nature and how we think we have to live. Anything that is resolved through violence is the wisdom of this world. That is the way the world has lived its life throughout history. God’s wisdom is to relinquish, to give up, to yield and to believe that there is something greater than death and, by that, not to fear death. It is a wisdom that is centered in the Cross of Christ Jesus, namely, to serve and glorify Him. We will know that we have aligned ourselves with God when we constitute a threat to the realm of spirit Powers that brood over us. The overcomers of the end of the age are not those who avoid pain and pursue pleasure, but who overcome,
…because of the blood of the Lamb and because of the word of their testimony, and they did not love their life even to death (Rev. 12:11b).
The world cannot bear this kind of wisdom. The only one who can live like that truly is one who does not think that this life is the whole story, and who realizes that there is a life beyond this life for which this life is preparation. There is an eternity, and it is the true appreciation of that reality that enables us to be fearless in this life. If we suffer the loss of our life, we are fully persuaded that it is not mere happenstance or accident, but ordained of God, and that there will be eternal reward for that sacrifice and suffering.

~Art Katz

The seasons, like greater tides, ebb and flow across the continents.
Spring advances up the United States at the average rate of about
fifteen miles a day. It ascends mountainsides at the rate of about a
hundred feet a day. It sweeps ahead like a flood of water, racing
down the long valleys, creeping up hillsides in a rising tide. Most
of us, like the man who lives on the bank of a river and watches the
stream flow by, see only one phase of the movement of spring. Each
year the season advances toward us out of the south, sweeps around
us, goes flooding away to the north.
– Edwin Way Teale, North With the Spring

Two from Jane Kenyon

The Bat
by Jane Kenyon

I was reading about rationalism,
the kind of thing we do up north
in early winter, where the sun
leaves work for the day at 4:15

Maybe the world is intelligible
to the rational mind;
and maybe we light the lamps at dusk
for nothing…

Then I heard the wings overhead.

The cats and I chased the bat
in circles—living room, kitchen,
pantry, kitchen, living room…
At every turn it evaded us

like the identity of the third person
in the Trinity: the one
who spoke through the prophets,
the one who astounded Mary
by suddenly coming near

Jane Kenyon

I got out of bed
on two strong legs.
It might have been
otherwise. I ate
cereal, sweet
milk, ripe, flawless
peach. It might
have been otherwise.
I took the dog uphill
to the birch wood.
All morning I did
the work I love.

At noon I lay down
with my mate. It might
have been otherwise.
We ate dinner together
at a table with silver
candlesticks. It might
have been otherwise.
I slept in a bed
in a room with paintings
on the walls, and
planned another day
just like this day.
But one day, I know,
it will be otherwise.

HT: A Tidings of Magpies

Self Interest

A selection of quotations.

“Do we really think that a government-dominated education is going to produce citizens capable of dominating their government, as the education of a truly vigilant self-governing people requires?” – Alan Keyes

“Education: the inculcation of the incomprehensible into the indifferent by the incompetent.”-John Maynard Keynes

“The cause of violence is not ignorance. It is self-interest. Only reverance can restrain violence – reverance for human life and the environment.” – William Sloan Coffin

“One of the best ways to check the validity of your investment information is to first check who the advertisers are in the publication you read. Many publications that support the idea of investing for the long term in mutual funds have mutual funds as their primary source of advertising revenue.” -Robert T. Kiyosaki

“The difference between death and taxes is death doesn’t get worse every time Congress meets.” – Will Rogers

“Well, I guess we don’t get to make fun of Burt’s [survivalist] lifestyle anymore.” – Fred Ward as Earl Bassett in Tremors, (1990)

“The problem with political jokes is they get elected.” – Henry Cate, VII