Art deals with profound and simple moods.. ..Let us suppose that the artist - in this instance (the artist )Picabia - gets a certain impression by looking at our skyscrapers, our city, our way of life, and that he tries to reproduce it.. ..he will convey it in plastic ways on the canvas, even though we see neither skyscrapers nor city on it.
Filippo Tommaso Marinetti
America's skyscrapers were not built by public funds nor for a public purpose: they were built by the energy, initiative and wealth of private individuals for personal profit. And, instead of impoverishing the people, these skyscrapers, as they rose higher and higher, kept raising the people's standard of living - including the inhabitants of the slums.
If you focus your eyes towards the horizon, everything and everyone walking in front of you becomes a blurry mass. That's what everyone else became. All of their dark wool suits began to mesh into one, and they began to rhythmically march in unison, all while I gazed at the sliver of sky that seemed to be pressed tightly in between the skyscrapers. I kept on walking and staring at the sky, and I began to notice the skyscrapers becoming larger and larger, and before I knew it, I had to turn to get to my building, and of course, the automat.
Wonder was the grace of the country. Any action could be justified by that: the wonder it was rooted in. Period followed period, and finally the wonder was that things could be built so big. Bridges, skyscrapers, fortunes, all having a life first in the marketplace, still drew on the force of wonder.
George W. S. Trow
Nature is impersonal, awe-inspiring, elegant, eternal. It's geometrically perfect. It's tiny and gigantic. You can travel far to be in a beautiful natural setting, or you can observe it in your backyard - or, in my case, in the trees lining New York City sidewalks, or in the clouds above skyscrapers.
I thought about all of the things that everyone ever says to each other, and how everyone is going to die, whether it's in a millisecond, or days, or months, or 76.5 years, if you were just born. Everything that's born has to die, which means our lives are like skyscrapers. The smoke rises at different speeds, but they're all on fire, and we're all trapped.
Jonathan Safran Foer
Spider-Man is a genuine American myth with a dark, primal power ... but it's also got this great superhero, and - hey! - he can fly through the theater at 40 miles an hour. It's got villains, it's got skyscrapers, it's colorful, it's Manhattan. I knew it would be a challenge, but I saw the inherent theatricality in it, and I couldn't resist.
As her body expanded so did her interior landscape. She imagined minarets, skyscrapers, entire cities being constructed inside her. Thighs thickened, belly became basketball-sized, buttocks deepened with dimples. Even her taste-buds shifted, and she held her tongue out for crushed ice, chalk, charcoal.
And just as your beautiful skyscrapers were destroyed and caused your grief, beautiful buildings and precious homes crumbled over their owners in Lebanon, Palestine, and Iraq by American weapons.... Americans should feel the pain they have inflicted on other peoples of the world, so as when they suffer, they will find the right solution and the right path.
Mongolia is a country of only three million souls. One million of them live in Ulaanbaatar, where, despite the skyscrapers, half the population sleep in tents. One of the few Mongolians to become famous outside his home country is Ariunbaatar Ganbaatar, who won the BBC Cardiff Singer of the World prize.
In all these products, whether iron bridges, locomotives, automobiles, telescopes, cottages, airport-hangars, funicular railways, skyscrapers, or children's toys, the will towards a new style expresses itself. The similarity of these examples to the new creations in art consists in the same striving for clear, pure form which expresses truth in the objects.
Theo van Doesburg
These cities grew in approximately the same places as our cities do now, however different the shape of the continents was. There was even a New York that in some way resembled the New York familiar to all of you, but was much newer, or, rather, more awash with new products, new toothbrushes, a New York with its own Manhattan that stretched out dense with skyscrapers gleaming like the nylon bristles of a brand-new toothbrush.
New Yorkers love the bigness - the skyscrapers, the freedom, the lights. But they also love it when they can carve out some smallness for themselves. When the guy at the corner store knows which newspaper you want. When the barista has your order ready before you open your mouth. When you start to recognize the people in your orbit, and you know that, say, if you're waiting for the subway at eight fifteen on the dot, odds are the redhead with the red umbrella is going to be there too.
In the later nineteenth century, the tops of skyscrapers often took the shape of domes, surmounted by jaunty gilded lanterns; later came ziggurats, mausoleums, Alexandrian lighthouses, miniature Parthenons. These charming follies contained neither royal corpses nor effigies of gods and goddesses; rather they contained large wooden tanks filled with water.
There is nothing more poetic and terrible than the skyscrapers' battle with the heavens that cover them. Snow, rain, and mist highlight, drench, or conceal the vast towers, but those towers, hostile to mystery and blind to any sort of play, shear off the rain's tresses and shine their three thousand swords through the soft swan of the fog.
Federico Garcia Lorca
Why would anybody be intimidated by mere words? I mean, neither I nor any other athiest that I know ever threatens violence. We never threaten to fly planes into skyscrapers. We never threaten suicide bombs. We are very gentle people. All we do is use words to talk about things like the cosmos, the origin of the universe, evolution, the origin of life. What's there to be frightened of? It's just an opinion.
New York! The white prisons, the sidewalks swarming with maggots, the breadlines, the opium joints that are built like palaces, the kikes that are there, the lepers, the thugs, and above all, the ennui, the monotony of faces, streets, legs, houses, skyscrapers, meals, posters, jobs, crimes, loves... A whole city erected over a hollow pit of nothingness. Meaningless. Absolute meaningless.
Not only in peasant homes, but also in city skyscrapers, there lives alongside the twentieth century, the thirteenth. A hundred million people use electricity and still believe in the magic powers of signs and exorcisms . . . movie stars to mediums. Aviators who pilot miraculous mechanisms created by man's genius wear amulets on their sweaters. What inexhaustible reserves they possess of darkness, ignorance and savagery!
A mirror can trick you day by day into thinking you remain looking and existing in one way forever. But a photograph presents you with the truth: it freezes you eternally, existing as a reminder that you can never, ever go back to any one moment again- that you are always changing, hour by hour, cell by cell, in tiny fragments that build skyscrapers overnight.
Kels Adeline Sapp
In our town there is a secret spot where you can still see the stars at night, believe it or not. It is the only spot like that left, unclouded by the dwindling skyscrapers rising nearby. It is a good place to go to walk and talk in whispers. Following the little hill that rises from the park to a small clearing which overlooks the statue of the armless general on his bronze steed, most of us later remember this spot as the first place we knew we might be in love.
It is easy to forget now, how effervescent and free we all felt that summer. Everything fades: the shimmer of gold over White Cove; the laughter in the night air; the lavender early morning light on the faces of skyscrapers, which had suddenly become so heroically tall. Every dawn seemed to promise fresh miracles, among other joys that are in short supply these days. And so I will try to tell you, while I still remember, how it was then, before everything changed-that final season of the era that roared.
The confusion of spirit and body is quite understandable in a culture where spirit is concretized in magnificent skyscrapers, where cathedrals have become museums for tourists, where woman-flesh-devil are associated, and nature is raped for any deplorable excuse. [...] Dieting with fierce will-power is the masculine route; dieting with love of her own nature is the feminine. Her only real hope is to care for her own body and experience it as the vessel through which her Self may be born.
Intense sunlight rained down on a half-submerged city. Waves crashed between buildings that stood like waterlogged tombstones. Skyscrapers of smashed glass and twisted rusting metal jutted from the churning swell as islands of broken dreams. A familiar tower with a familiar clock face... Big Ben. London stared back at Blue. What was left of it. A sea-drowned cemetery for a time and a place long dead.
YOU LIKE IT? I LOVE IT YOU LOVE IT? I'M ABOVE IT I SUPPOSE WEST COAST WE DON'T LIKE THEM HOES MY LIKE-LIFE'S LIKE LIFE ONLY MORE LIFELIKE I LOVE IT WHY DON'T YOU SHUT THE FUCK UP WE DON'T GOTTA' LIKE YOU CAUSE WE AREN'T LIKE YOU WE'RE LIKE ME AND LIKE ME DO WE LIKE YOU? FOR YOU TO BE AS FLY AS ME YOU HAVE TO GET YOUR PILOT'S WINGS I BUILD SKYSCRAPERS OUT OF SKY PAGERS AND TEXT THE SKY 911 AT MY LEISURE I AIN'T TRYNA' BE LIKED I'M MORE LIKE LIKE, WHO YOU DOPPELGANGERS TRY AND BE LIKE? CELEBRITY LIFE EVERY NIGHT IF EVERYTHING IS EVERYTHING I HATE EVERYTHING TWICE
On the street below, the weather is calm. But up here, high winds threaten to topple the workers. A sudden gust can knock them from their footing with its sheer force or send a fatal vibration through the beams on which they stand. And yet the men joke, laugh, stroll across the foot-wide beams as though they are on solid ground. To the people on the sidewalk, tiny as ants below, the skywalkers appear entirely unafraid. A hundred years ago, their grandfathers and great-grandfathers built the skyscrapers and bridges that surround them.
So in this Hemisphere when the moon goes down, I sit in one of those all-night-into-mornings cafes, watching short short skies below the skyscrapers and low-rises and sense the big turntables turning and the roadies setting up from stadium to stadium from L.A. to New York and all north and south and east and west and in between - and i know there must be a lot of kids who aren't sleeping but listening to their muse - iPad-ing and YouTubing... and the final shore ain't no shore at all but a long ether cable cyperspacing us together - cutting the continent in half.
He tunneled into stories where weak men changed into strong half-animals or used eye beams or magic hammers to power through steel or climb up the sides of skyscrapers. He was the Hulk when angry and Spidey the rest of the time. When he felt his heart hurt he turned into something stronger than a little boy, and he grew up this way. A heart that flashed from heart to stone, heart to stone. As I watched I thought of what Grandma Lynn liked to say when Lindsey and I rolled our eyes or grimaced behind her back. "Watch out what faces you make. You'll freeze that way.
Centralization of society's vital services in giant computer centers, reservoirs, nuclear power plants, air- traffic control centers, 100-story skyscrapers, and government compounds increases its vulnerability. ... choosing his targets, today's saboteur could pollute a city's water supply, dynamite power transmission towers, cripple an airport control center, destroy a corporate or government computer center.
College feminists made fun of skyscrapers, saying they were phallic symbols. They said the same thing about space rockets, even though, if you stopped to think about it, rockets were shaped the way they were not because of phallocentrism but because of aerodynamics. Would a vagina-shaped Apollo 11 have made it to the moon? Evolution had created the penis. It was a useful structure for getting certain things done. And if it worked for the pistils of flowers as well as the inseminatory organs of Homo sapiens, whose fault was that but Biology's? But no-anything large or grand in design, any long novel, big sculpture, or towering building, became, in the opinion of the "women" Mitchell knew at college, manifestations of male insecurity about the size of their penises.
Tolerance is an attitude of reasoned patience toward evil ... a forbearance that restrains us from showing anger or inflicting punishment. Tolerance applies only to persons ... never to truth. Tolerance applies to the erring, intolerance to the error ... Architects are as intolerant about sand as foundations for skyscrapers as doctors are intolerant about germs in the laboratory. Tolerance does not apply to truth or principles. About these things we must be intolerant, and for this kind of intolerance, so much needed to rouse us from sentimental gush, I make a plea. Intolerance of this kind is the foundation of all stability.
Fulton J. Sheen
So time passed on. And the two skyscrapers decided to have a child. And they decided when their child came it should be a free child. "It must be a free child, " they said to each other. "It must not be a child standing still all its life on a street corner. Yes, if we have a child she mist be free to run across the prairie, to the mountains, to the sea. Yes, it must be a free child." So time passed on. Their child came. It was a railroad train, the Golden Spike Limited, the fastest long distance train in the Rootabaga Country. It ran across the prairie, to the mountains, to the sea.
Nothing has changed, Claire. You're still as beautiful as you were when we met first and I am still in love with everything about you. We may be worlds apart but this doesn't keep our hearts at distance. I feel your breath in every breath of mine and I hear your heartbeat in every beat of my heart. I traveled to far away lands, rivers, forests, mountains, glaciers, deserts and skyscrapers but wherever I go I find you there. My dreams aren't illusions but visions of a beautiful yesterday; I play with your hair-locks, I kiss your eyes, I embrace your hands and you giggle in my arms blossoming like a flower. My love, you're my only reality, my only fantasy, my only celebration and my only refuge. I have waited a thousands suns and I can wait a thousand more to witness the moment you call out to me. That day you'll find me and even if I don't live up to see that day I will be with you forever, just remember me.
Okay, I know-my superpower-I'd be able to shoot lightening bolts out from my fingertips-great big knowledge network lightening bolts-and when a person was zapped by one of those bolts, they'd fall down on their knees and once on their knees, they'd be under water, in this place I saw once off the east coast of the Bahamas, a place where a billion electric blue fish swam up to me and made me a part of their school-and then they'd be up in the air, up in Manhattan, above the World Trade Center, with a flock of pigeons, flying amid the skyscrapers, and then-then what? And then they'd go blind, and then they'd be taken away-they'd feel homesick-more homesick than they'd felt in their entire life-so homesick they were throwing up-and they'd be abandoned, I don't know... in the middle of a harvested corn field in Missouri. And then they'd be able to see again, and from the edges of the field people would appear-everybody they'd known-and they'd be carrying Black Forest cakes and burning tiki lamps and boom boxes playing the same song, and they sky would turn into a sunset, the way it does in Walt Disney brochure, and the person I zapped would never be alone or isolated again.
The late 1920s were an age of islands, real and metaphorical. They were an age when Americans by thousands and tens of thousands were scheming to take the next boat for the South Seas or the West Indies, or better still for Paris, from which they could scatter to Majorca, Corsica, Capri or the isles of Greece. Paris itself was a modern city that seemed islanded in the past, and there were island countries, like Mexico, where Americans could feel that they had escaped from everything that oppressed them in a business civilization. Or without leaving home they could build themselves private islands of art or philosophy; or else - and this was a frequent solution - they could create social islands in the shadow of the skyscrapers, groups of close friends among whom they could live as unconstrainedly as in a Polynesian valley, live without moral scruples or modern conveniences, live in the pure moment, live gaily on gin and love and two lamb chops broiled over a coal fire in the grate. That was part of the Greenwich Village idea, and soon it was being copied in Boston, San Francisco, everywhere.
He tans into burning while the opening fanfare to "Peaches en Regalia" flows over him, the bugle call for a hippie army that marched at the peak of the American parabola, that moment when physics held its breath to allow levitation, a small reward before the descent. The hippies knew it then, Maggot Boy Johnson thinks; they couldn't build it into words but they could feel it; a floating in the stomach as history shifted direction. They stopped, hey, what's that sound, and knew that the spiny skyscrapers reflected in the river, the chasms of concrete, the wide streets and sidewalks, the power lines cutting into the hills and mountains above missile silos, the highways drawing lines across the blank plains under enormous skies, the pupil of God's eye, would be the ruins that their grandchildren wandered among, the reminders that once there was always water in the faucet, there was electricity all the time, and America was prying off the shackles of its past. The vision opened up to them and winked out again, and those it blinded staggered through their lives unable to see anything else, while the rest of them wondered if they had only dreamed it.
Brian Francis Slattery
Speak to me about power. What is it?' I do believe I'm being out-Cambridged. 'You want me to discuss power? Right here and now?' Her shapely head tilts. 'No time except the present.' 'Okay.' Only for a ten. 'Power is the ability to make someone do what they otherwise wouldn't, or deter them from doing what they otherwise would.' Immaculee Constantin is unreadable. 'How?' 'By coercion and reward. Carrots and sticks, though in bad light one looks much like the other. Coercion is predicated upon the fear of violence or suffering. 'Obey, or you'll regret it.' Tenth-century Danes exacted tribute by it; the cohesion of the Warsaw Pact rested upon it; and playground bullies rule by it. Law and order relies upon it. That's why we bang up criminals and why even democracies seek to monopolize force.' Immaculee Constantin watches my face as I talk; it's thrilling and distracting. 'Reward works by promising 'Obey and benefit.' This dynamic is at work in, let's say, the positioning of NATO bases in nonmember states, dog training, and putting up with a shitty job for your working life. How am I doing?' Security Goblin's sneeze booms through the chapel. 'You scratch the surface, ' says Immaculee Constantin. I feel lust and annoyance. 'Scratch deeper, then.' She brushes a tuft of fluff off her glove and appears to address her hand: 'Power is lost or won, never created or destroyed. Power is a visitor to, not a possession of, those it empowers. The mad tend to crave it, many of the sane crave it, but the wise worry about its long-term side effects. Power is crack cocaine for your ego and battery acid for your soul. Power's comings and goings, from host to host, via war, marriage, ballot box, diktat, and accident of birth, are the plot of history. The empowered may serve justice, remodel the Earth, transform lush nations into smoking battlefields, and bring down skyscrapers, but power itself is amoral.' Immaculee Constantin now looks up at me. 'Power will notice you. Power is watching you now. Carry on as you are, and power will favor you. But power will also laugh at you, mercilessly, as you lie dying in a private clinic, a few fleeting decades from now. Power mocks all its illustrious favorites as they lie dying. 'Imperious Caesar, dead and turn'd to clay, might stop a hole to keep the wind away.' That thought sickens me, Hugo Lamb, like nothing else. Doesn't it sicken you?
SEPTEMBER 1, 1939 I sit in one of the dives On Fifty-second Street Uncertain and afraid As the clever hopes expire Of a low dishonest decade: Waves of anger and fear Circulate over the bright And darkened lands of the earth, Obsessing our private lives; The unmentionable odour of death Offends the September night. Accurate scholarship can Unearth the whole offence From Luther until now That has driven a culture mad, Find what occurred at Linz, What huge imago made A psychopathic god: I and the public know What all schoolchildren learn, Those to whom evil is done Do evil in return. Exiled Thucydides knew All that a speech can say About Democracy, And what dictators do, The elderly rubbish they talk To an apathetic grave; Analysed all in his book, The enlightenment driven away, The habit-forming pain, Mismanagement and grief: We must suffer them all again. Into this neutral air Where blind skyscrapers use Their full height to proclaim The strength of Collective Man, Each language pours its vain Competitive excuse: But who can live for long In an euphoric dream; Out of the mirror they stare, Imperialism's face And the international wrong. Faces along the bar Cling to their average day: The lights must never go out, The music must always play, All the conventions conspire To make this fort assume The furniture of home; Lest we should see where we are, Lost in a haunted wood, Children afraid of the night Who have never been happy or good. The windiest militant trash Important Persons shout Is not so crude as our wish: What mad Nijinsky wrote About Diaghilev Is true of the normal heart; For the error bred in the bone Of each woman and each man Craves what it cannot have, Not universal love But to be loved alone. From the conservative dark Into the ethical life The dense commuters come, Repeating their morning vow; 'I will be true to the wife, I'll concentrate more on my work, ' And helpless governors wake To resume their compulsory game: Who can release them now, Who can reach the dead, Who can speak for the dumb? All I have is a voice To undo the folded lie, The romantic lie in the brain Of the sensual man-in-the-street And the lie of Authority Whose buildings grope the sky: There is no such thing as the State And no one exists alone; Hunger allows no choice To the citizen or the police; We must love one another or die. Defenseless under the night Our world in stupor lies; Yet, dotted everywhere, Ironic points of light Flash out wherever the Just Exchange their messages: May I, composed like them Of Eros and of dust, Beleaguered by the same Negation and despair, Show an affirming flame.