Intriguing isn't it? One day you are the king of your world. And the next day, you stand aside, watching it all burn. Ashes slipping out of your hand, you just stand and stare, your glassy gaze fixed on something no one else could see, no one else could know... People will talk as people do talk. And they will walk over the ashes. And the ashes will dance in front of you, reminding you every second of what was and what might have been. And you will almost give in. But my advice is, don't give in. Because one day, you will decide to turn the corner. Put it all behind you. Just stand strong and still as the great wind comes and takes all the ashes away with with it, leaving fresh air behind. Fresh for you to make a new world, a better world.
This is a valley of ashes--a fantastic farm where ashes grow like wheat into ridges and hills and grotesque gardens; where ashes take the forms of houses and chimneys and rising smoke and, finally, with a transcendent effort, of men who move dimly and already crumbling through the powdery air. Occasionally a line of gray cars crawls along an invisible track, gives out a ghastly creak, and comes to rest, and immediately the ash-gray men swarm up with leaden spades and stir up an impenetrable cloud, which screens their obscure operations from your sight.
F. Scott Fitzgerald
This is a visuality that moves away from view, a cinema, and one that burns away from view, cinders. Bound by the secret homonym and visuality formed from two romanized classical prefixes, "cine". A secret sign and homonym that signifies in two registers, bringing together ashes and movement. To cinefy: to make move, to make cinema and to incinerate, to reduce to ashes. Traces and residues of movement, and the movement of ashes. Cinefaction.
Akira Mizuta Lippit
After all why should our goal be the reinstatement of an illusory 'exact' relationship between events and words? If you probe in the ashes you will never learn anything about the fire: by the time the ashes can be handled the meaning has passed on. Every adventure is a cup so empty it can be drunk from again and again and again. Every adventure is so perfect it verges on silence.
M. John Harrison
Ring around the rosie. A pocket full of posie. Ashes ashes, we all fall down. Some people say that this poem is about the Black Death, the fourteenth-century plague that killed 100-million people... Sadly, though, most experts think this is nonsense... How can I be so sure about this rhyme when all the experts disagree? Because I ate the kid who made it up.
In my beginning is my end. In succession Houses rise and fall, crumble, are extended, Are removed, destroyed, restored, or in their place Is an open field, or a factory, or a by-pass. Old stone to new building, old timber to new fires, Old fires to ashes, and ashes to the earth Which is already flesh, fur and faeces, Bone of man and beast, cornstalk and leaf.
T. S. Eliot
Shadow and dust shall be reclaimed, earth sealing the tomb from which you came. Dust to dust, ashes to ashes, warrior return, breathe your last. Air, earth, fire, water, hear my voice, obey my order, thrice around your grave do bound, evil sink into the ground. I now invoke the law of three, this is my will, so mote it be.
As the leaves randomly fell, she contemplated how they sacrificially gave up their essence to sustain new life. Or was it the tree's sacrifice? Each leaf was a part of Gaia's play. Their final act: to decompose so a new level of soil could be made, an earthen writing tablet for the next layer of history to be recorded. One generation became the groundwork for the next. Ashes to ashes, dust to dust. Nothing was exempt, not even the leaves.
God can take what Satan meant for shame and use it for His glory. Just when we think we've messed up so badly that our lives are nothing but heaps of ashes, God pours His living water over us and mixes the ashes into clay. He then takes this clay and molds it into a vessel of beauty. After He fills us with His overflowing love, He can use us to pour His love into the hurting lives of others.
The search for truth is, as it always has been, the noblest expression of the human spirit. Man's insatiable desire for knowledge about himself, about his environment and the forces by which he is surrounded, gives life its meaning and purpose, and clothes it with final dignity.... And yet we know, deep in our hearts, that knowledge is not enough.... Unless we can anchor our knowledge to moral purposes, the ultimate result will be dust and ashes- dust and ashes that will bury the hopes and monuments of men beyond recovery.
Raymond B. Fosdick
She stood above the sink and broke the Swarovski glass frame - a wedding gift - with her hands. Her thumb got cut. As blood drops fell into the sink, like mercury balls she thought, she lit the photo on fire. Ashes fell into the sink. Fire and vermilion. Ashes and blood. Her marriage from start to finish.
The stamp is something left over from an inpatient hospital program. In some other program RELEASED used to mean a client was set free. Now it means a client is dead. Nobody wanted to special-order a stamp that said DEAD. The caseworker told me this a few years ago when the suicides started back up again. Ashes to ashes. Dust to dust. This is how things get recycled.
We sit in an awkward silence for a few minutes before she speaks. 'You're right. There's more to it.' I'm not sure if I should wait and let her speak, or if she's waiting for an acknowledgement. I slowly turn my head toward her and settle my eyes on hers. 'I went through a rough time a few years ago. I wasn't sure things would get better for me. One day, Rick and Jo were able to knock some sense into me. When a Phoenix dies, it rises from its ashes to have a new life.' Her eyes leave mine as she rolls to her back and stares at the stars. 'The tattoo reminds me of that. One chapter of my life may end, but that doesn't mean a new chapter won't come from the ashes. It probably sounds silly to you.
Time is a lot of the things people say that God is. There's always preexisting, and having no end. There's the notion of being all powerful-because nothing can stand against time, can it? Not mountains, not armies. And time is, of course, all-healing. Give anything enough time, and everything is taken care of: all pain encompassed, all hardship erased, all loss subsumed. Ashes to ashes, dust to dust. Remember, man, that thou art dust; and unto dust thou shalt return. And if time is anything akin to God, I suppose that memory must be the devil.
Clay can be a metaphor for many things. I made it a metaphor for flesh and earth, and these are two kinds of generic givens of life, if you look at it poetically, biblically, the idea of the life of beings, of man, being transitory, the earth abides-ashes to ashes, dust to dust-man returns to earth, grows out of earth like a flower, wilts, goes back to the earth... We are frail, transitory creatures with aspirations of immortality, conscious of our inevitable death, and we have to deal with it somehow.
Stephen De Staebler