Jesmyn Ward left her Gulf Coast home for education and experience, but it called her back. It called on her in most painful ways, to mourn. In Men We Reaped, Jesmyn unburies her dead, that they may live again. And through this emotional excavation, she forces us to see the problems of place and race that led these men to their early graves. Full of beauty, love, and dignity, Men We Reaped is a haunting and essential read.
'Boycott caused all the trouble,' they say, as if I could have canvassed all those people personally to take a stand in 1983. Nonsense! The committee were the ones with the power to make the decisions, not me. They started the unrest, they did the sackings, and they reaped what they sowed.
Sometimes, I had very little - if any - idea for whom I was really working: at the end of the day, who reaped the profits? Was it a privately controlled German foundation or a global array of stockholders? A middle-class guy on the Upper West Side or Rupert Murdoch? Were we pursuing mere profit, or self-perpetuation, or something bigger?
Men We Reaped is a fiercely felt meditation on the value of life that at once reminds us of its infinite worth and indicts us - as a society - for our selective, casual complicity in devaluing it. Ward's account of these losses is founded in a compelling emotional honesty, and graced with moments of stark poetry.
Peter Ho Davies
Jesmyn Ward is an alchemist. She transmutes pain and loss into gold. Men We Reaped illustrates hardships but thankfully, vitally, it's just as clear about the humor, the intelligence, the tenderness, the brilliance of the folks in DeLisle, Mississippi. A community that's usually wiped off the literary map can't be erased when it's in a book this good.
anyone lived in a pretty how town (with up so floating many bells down) spring summer autumn winter he sang his didn't he danced his did Women and men(both little and small) cared for anyone not at all they sowed their isn't they reaped their same sun moon stars rain children guessed(but only a few and down they forgot as up they grew autumn winter spring summer) that noone loved him more by more when by now and tree by leaf she laughed his joy she cried his grief bird by snow and stir by still anyone's any was all to her someones married their everyones laughed their cryings and did their dance (sleep wake hope and then)they said their nevers they slept their dream stars rain sun moon (and only the snow can begin to explain how children are apt to forget to remember with up so floating many bells down) one day anyone died i guess (and noone stooped to kiss his face) busy folk buried them side by side little by little and was by was all by all and deep by deep and more by more they dream their sleep noone and anyone earth by april wish by spirit and if by yes. Women and men (both dong and ding) summer autumn winter spring reaped their sowing and went their came sun moon stars rain
What am I then...? Everything that I have seen, heard, and observed I have collected and exploited. My works have been nourished by countless different individuals, by innocent and wise ones, people of intelligence and dunces. Childhood, maturity and old age all have brought me their thoughts....their perspectives on life. I have often reaped what others have sowed. My work is the work of a collective being that bears the name Goethe.
Johann Wolfgang von Goethe
Agriculture probably required a far greater discipline than did any form of food collecting. Seeds had to be planted at certain seasons, some protection had to be given to the growing plants and animals, harvests had to be reaped, stored and divided. Thus, we might argue that it was neither leisure time nor a sedentary existence but the more rigorous demands associated with an agricultural way of life that led to great cultural changes.
The whole of life is a journey toward youthful old age, toward self-contemplation, love, gaiety, and, in a fundamental sense, the most gratifying time of our lives. . . . "Old age" should be a harvest time when the riches of life are reaped and enjoyed, while it continues to be a special period for self-development and expansion.
For the last one hundred and fifty years, the history of the House of Rothschild has been to an amazing degree the backstage history of Western Europe...Because of their success in making loans not to individuals but to nations, they reaped huge profits...Someone once said that the wealth of Rothschild consists of the bankruptcy of nations.
I knew by the signs it would be a hard winter. The hollies bore a heavy crop of berries and birds stripped them bare. Crows quarreled in reaped fields and owls cried in the mountains, mournful as widows. Fur and moss grew thicker than usual. Cold rains came, driven sideways through the trees by north winds, and snows followed.
It is often asserted that woman owes all the advantages of the position she occupies to-day to Christianity, but the facts of history show that the Christian Church has done nothing specifically for woman's elevation. In the general march of civilization, she has necessarily reaped the advantage of man's higher development, but we must not claim for Christianity all that has been achieved by science, discovery and invention.
Elizabeth Cady Stanton
The likeness of this world's life is only as water which We send down from the cloud, then the herbage of the earth of which men and cattle eat grows luxuriantly thereby, until when the earth puts on its golden raiment and it becomes garnished, and its people think that they have power over it, Our command comes to it, by night or by day, so We render it as reaped seed; produce, as though it had not been in existence yesterday; thus do We make clear the communications for a people who reflect.
Is not that government both unjust and ungrateful, that is so prodigal of it's favors to those called gentlemen, or goldsmiths, or such others who are idle, or live either by flattery or by contriving the arts of vain pleasure, and, on the other hand, takes no care of those of a meaner sort, such as ploughmen, colliers, and smiths, without whom it could not subsist? But after the public has reaped all the advantage of their service, and they come to be oppressed with age, sickness, and want, all their labours and the good they have done is forgotten, and all the recompense given them is that they are left to die in great misery.
It's the enjoyment of every step in the process of doing; everything, not only the isolated piece we label art. If accomplishing is the only goal, all that it takes to reach that goal is too slow, too fatiguing- an obstacle to what you want to achieve. If you want to rush the accomplishment, it is an inevitable disappointment. Then you rush to something else. The disappointment is reaped over and over again. But if every step is pleasant, then the accomplishment becomes even more, because it is nourished by what is going on.
[I have seen] workers in whom certain morbid affections gradually arise from some particular posture of the limbs or unnatural movements of the body called for while they work. Such are the workers who all day stand or sit, stoop or are bent double, who run or ride or exercise their bodies in all sorts of [excess] ways. ... the harvest of diseases reaped by certain workers ... [from] irregular motions in unnatural postures of the body.
When our people were fed out of the common store, and laboured jointly together, glad was he could slip from his labour, or slumber over his taske he cared not how, nay, the most honest among them would hardly take so much true paines in a weeke, as now for themselves they will doe in a day: neither cared they for the increase, presuming that howsoever the harvest prospered, the generall store must maintaine them, so that wee reaped not so much Corne from the labours of thirtie, as now three or foure doe provide for themselves.
His three boats stove around him, and oars and men both whirling in the eddies; one captain, seizing the line-knife from his broken prow, had dashed at the whale, as an Arkansas duellist at his foe, blindly seeking with a six inch blade to reach the fathom-deep life of the whale. That captain was Ahab. And then it was, that suddenly sweeping his sickle-shaped lower jaw benieath him, Moby Dick had reaped away Ahab's leg.
Some years ago, someone had come up with the idea that the State should hold all Titles to vehicles, mailing a Certificate of Title to the 'owners'. This created a legal fiction that the State owned the vehicles. Drivers were thus driving a State owned vehicle, mandating drivers must have a license to drive a State vehicle, which was false. The State reaped many millions with its drivers license scam, and began issuing heavy fines for not having a State license.
If Under fell, if Over leaped, If death was life and Death life reaped, Something rises from the gloom, To make the Underland a tomb Hear it scratching down below, Rat of long forgotten snow, Evil cloaked in coat of White, Will the Warrior drain your light? What could turn the Warrior week? What do burning Gnawers seek? Just a barely speaking pup That holds the Land of Under up Die the baby, die his heart Die his most essential part Die the peace that rules the hour, Gnawers have their key to power
Compare King William with the philosopher Haeckel. The king is one of the anointed by the most high, as they claim-one upon whose head has been poured the divine petroleum of authority. Compare this king with Haeckel, who towers an intellectual colossus above the crowned mediocrity. Compare George Eliot with Queen Victoria. The Queen is clothed in garments given her by blind fortune and unreasoning chance, while George Eliot wears robes of glory woven in the loom of her own genius. The world is beginning to pay homage to intellect, to genius, to heart. We have advanced. We have reaped the benefit of every sublime and heroic self-sacrifice, of every divine and brave act; and we should endeavor to hand the torch to the next generation, having added a little to the intensity and glory of the flame.
Robert G. Ingersoll