Why are all reflections lovelier than what we call reality? - not so grand or so strong, it may be, but always lovelier? Fair as is the gliding sloop on the shining sea, the wavering, trembling, unresting sail below is fairer still... All mirrors are magic mirrors. The commonest room is a room in a poem when I turn to the glass... There must be a truth involved in it, though we may but in part lay hold of the meaning.
Why are all reflections lovelier than what we call reality? -- not so grand or so strong, it may be, but always lovelier? Fair as is the gliding sloop on the shining sea, the wavering, trembling, unresting sail below is fairer still...All mirrors are magic mirrors. The commonest room is a room in a poem when I turn to the glass...There must be a truth involved in it, though we may but in part lay hold of the meaning.
The sun hitched up her trousers and soldiered on up into the sky. September squinted at it and wondered if the sun here was different than the sun in Nebraska. It seemed gentler, more golden, deeper. The shadows it cast seemed more profound. But September could not be sure. When one is traveling, everything looks brighter and lovelier. That does not mean that it is brighter and lovelier; it just means that sweet, kindly home suffers in comparison to tarted-up foreign places with all their jewels on.
Catherynne M. Valente
I have named you queen. There are taller than you, taller. There are purer than you, purer. There are lovelier than you, lovelier. But you are the queen. When you go through the streets No one recognizes you. No one sees your crystal crown, no one looks At the carpet of red gold That you tread as you pass, The nonexistent carpet. And when you appear All the rivers sound In my body, bells Shake the sky, And a hymn fills the world. Only you and I, Only you and I, my love, Listen to it.
When music sounds, gone is the earth I know, And all her lovelier things even lovelier grow; Her flowers in vision flame, her forest trees Lift burdened branches, stilled with ecstasies. When music sounds, out of the water rise Naiads whose beauty dims my waking eyes, Rapt in strange dream burns each enchanted face, With solemn echoing stirs their dwelling-place. When music sounds, all that I was I am Ere to this haunt of brooding dust I came; And from Time's woods break into distant song The swift-winged hours, as I hasten along.
Walter de La Mare
Indonesia isn't the most beautiful country in the world. I don't think so. Italy is much lovelier - and France too. It's a very problematic country. And that's why you have to stay here for the rest of your life. Indonesia is a process. It's not a finished idea. It's a practice, and a trial and error.
Since you walked out on me I'm getting lovelier by the hour. I glow like a corpse in the dark. No one sees how round and sharp my eyes have grown how my carcass looks like a glass urn, how I hold up things in the rags of my hands, the way I can stand through crippled by lust. No, there's just your cruelty circling my head like a bright rotting halo.
You live your life like it's a rare treasure to be savored. You take pleasure from the simplest of things and you never take them for granted. I saw the joy on your face and the life in your eyes when you cradled the permits to your chest. I've never seen anything lovelier. I actually thought you would cry just from the joy of touching them. I've been numb all my life, Megeara, but you... you feel on a level that I can't even imagine, and for a little while I wanted to feel that, too. (Arik)
No human face is exactly the same in its lines on each side, no leaf perfect in its lobes, no branch in its symmetry. All admit irregularity as they imply change; and to banish imperfection is to destroy expression, to check exertion, to paralyze vitality. All things are literally better, lovelier, and more beloved for the imperfections which have been divinely appointed, that the law of human life may be Effort, and the law of human judgment, Mercy.
Within minutes my 115-mile walk through the desert hills becomes a thing apart, a disjunct reality on the far side of a bottomless abyss, immediately beyond physical recollection.But it's all still there in my heart and soul. The walk, the hills, the sky, the solitary pain and pleasure-they will grow larger, sweeter, lovelier in the days to come, like a treasure found and then, voluntarily, surrendered. Returned to the mountains with my blessing. It leaves a golden glowing on the mind.
So spake the enemy of mankind, enclosed In serpent, inmate bad! and toward Eve Addressed his way: not with indented wave, Prone on the ground, as since; but on his rear, Circular base of rising folds, that towered Fold above fold, a surging maze! his head Crested aloft, and carbuncle his eyes; With burnished neck of verdant gold, erect Amidst his circling spires, that on the grass Floated redundant: pleasing was his shape And lovely; never since of serpent-kind Lovelier...
I wondered why it was that places are so much lovelier when one is alone. How commonplace and stupid it would be if I had a friend now, sitting beside me, someone I had known at school, who would say: 'By-the-way, I saw old Hilda the other day. You remember her, the one who was so good at tennis. She's married, with two children.' And the bluebells beside us unnoticed, and the pigeons overhead unheard. I did not want anyone with me. Not even Maxim. If Maxim had been there I should not be lying as I was now, chewing a piece of grass, my eyes shut. I should have been watching him, watching his eyes, his expression. Wondering if he liked it, if he was bored. Wondering what he was thinking. Now I could relax, none of these things mattered. Maxim was in London. How lovely it was to be alone again.
Daphne du Maurier
For it was one of the special mercies of Providence, Lucilla was apt to say, that beauty and shabbiness are quite compatible. The great thing, she would tell her grandchildren, was to start well. A thing of beauty is a joy forever, but it must be a costly and strong beauty, purchased at a high price of service or sacrifice, not skin-deep but bone-deep, if it is to be as desirable at the shabby end as it was at the sumptuous beginning. Pointing a moral to the grandchildren she would wave a hand towards her Sheraton chairs with the petit-point seats worked by her grandmother in a pattern of purple pansies and crimson gilliflowers. She would tell them how the exquisite curves of the wood had been created by the hands of a craftsman, each tool in its aptness and simplicity itself a thing of beauty in his hands as patiently, line by line, he fashioned the vision that was in his mind. And the same with the great-grandmother's needlework. She had spun the wool herself and dyed it to its lovely colors with the juices of plants picked upon her walks, she had seen with the eyes of her mind a vision of her garden, formalized and touched with perpetual stillness, and painted the picture with her needle upon canvas. And now, though their legs were scratched and their colors were faded the chairs were as lovely as ever. Lovelier, Lucilla declared, because a work of art is like a human being, the more it is loved the more beautiful it grows, reflecting the gift of love like light back again to the giver... The odes of Keats, she had heard it said, are lovelier now than when they were written... And the same with her Sheraton chairs, which had been loved now for so many years. And everything in the house, she had told Margaret twenty years ago, must be as love-worthy as they were if Damerosehay was to be a perfect refuge for the grandchildren. Margaret had sighed and asked if this dictum applied to the saucepans. "Certainly, " Lucilla had replied. "I'll have none but the best saucepans.
Bouchalka was not a reflective person. He had his own idea of what a great prima donna should be like, and he took it for granted that Mme. Garnet corresponded to his conception. The curious thing was that he managed to impress his idea upon Cressida herself. She began to see herself as he saw her, to try to be like the notion of her that he carried everywhere in that pointed head of his. She was exalted quite beyond herself. Things that had been chilled under the grind came to life in her that winter, with the breath of Bouchalka's adoration. Then, if ever in her life, she heard the bird sing on the branch outside her window; and she wished she were younger, lovelier, freer. She wished there were no Poppas, no Horace, no Garnets. She longed to be only the bewitching creature Bouchalka imagined her.
The cloudless day is richer at its close; A golden glory settles on the lea; Soft, stealing shadows hint of cool repose To mellowing landscape, and to calming sea. And in that nobler, gentler, lovelier light, The soul to sweeter, loftier bliss inclines; Freed form the noonday glare, the favour'd sight Increasing grace in earth and sky divines. But ere the purest radiance crowns the green, Or fairest lustre fills th' expectant grove, The twilight thickens, and the fleeting scene Leaves but a hallow'd memory of love!
I have been thinking about existence lately. In fact, I have been so full of admiration for existence that I have hardly been able to enjoy it properly... I feel sometimes as if I were a child who opens its eyes on the world once and sees amazing things it will never know any names for and then has to close its eyes again. I know this is all mere apparition compared to what awaits us, but it is only lovelier for that. There is a human beauty in it. And I can't believe that, when we have all been changed and put on incorruptibility, we will forget our fantastic condition of mortality and impermanence, the great bright dream of procreating and perishing that meant the whole world to us. In eternity this world will be Troy, I believe, and all that has passed here will be the epic of the universe, the ballad they sing in the streets. Because I don't imagine any reality putting this one in the shade entirely, and I think piety forbids me to try.
But it so happens that everything on this planet is, ultimately, irrational; there is not, and cannot be, any reason for the causal connexion of things, if only because our use of the word "reason" already implies the idea of causal connexion. But, even if we avoid this fundamental difficulty, Hume said that causal connexion was not merely unprovable, but unthinkable; and, in shallower waters still, one cannot assign a true reason why water should flow down hill, or sugar taste sweet in the mouth. Attempts to explain these simple matters always progress into a learned lucidity, and on further analysis retire to a remote stronghold where every thing is irrational and unthinkable. If you cut off a man's head, he dies. Why? Because it kills him. That is really the whole answer. Learned excursions into anatomy and physiology only beg the question; it does not explain why the heart is necessary to life to say that it is a vital organ. Yet that is exactly what is done, the trick that is played on every inquiring mind. Why cannot I see in the dark? Because light is necessary to sight. No confusion of that issue by talk of rods and cones, and optical centres, and foci, and lenses, and vibrations is very different to Edwin Arthwait's treatment of the long-suffering English language. Knowledge is really confined to experience. The laws of Nature are, as Kant said, the laws of our minds, and, as Huxley said, the generalization of observed facts. It is, therefore, no argument against ceremonial magic to say that it is "absurd" to try to raise a thunderstorm by beating a drum; it is not even fair to say that you have tried the experiment, found it would not work, and so perceived it to be "impossible." You might as well claim that, as you had taken paint and canvas, and not produced a Rembrandt, it was evident that the pictures attributed to his painting were really produced in quite a different way. You do not see why the skull of a parricide should help you to raise a dead man, as you do not see why the mercury in a thermometer should rise and fall, though you elaborately pretend that you do; and you could not raise a dead man by the aid of the skull of a parricide, just as you could not play the violin like Kreisler; though in the latter case you might modestly add that you thought you could learn. This is not the special pleading of a professed magician; it boils down to the advice not to judge subjects of which you are perfectly ignorant, and is to be found, stated in clearer and lovelier language, in the Essays of Thomas Henry Huxley.