We fly to beauty as an asylum from the terrors of finite nature. Emerson, Journals, 1836.

Beauty is a primeval phenomenon, which itself never makes its appearance, but the reflection of which is visible in a thousand different utterances of the creative mind, and is as various as nature herself. Goethe, quoted in Johann Peter Eckermann's Conversations with Goethe, April 18, 1827.


The simple lack of her is more to me than others' presence. Edward Thomas (1878- 1917), English poet.

To live is like to love -all reason is against it, and all healthy instinct for it. Samuel Butler, Life and love.

Oh, love is real enough; you will find it someday, but it has one archenemy -- and that is life. Jean Anouilh, Ardele, 1948, (1, translated by Lucienne Hill).

Love is, above all, the gift of oneself. Jean Anouilh, Ardele, 1948, (2, translated by Lucienne Hill).

To love a thing means wanting it to live. Confucius, Analects, 6th century B.C. (12.10, translated by Ch'u Chai and Winberg Chai).

Love is that condition in which the happiness of another person is essential to your own. Robert A. Heinlein, Stranger in a Strange Land, 1961, 34.

As selfishness and complaint pervert and cloud the mind, so love with its joy clears and sharpens the vision. Helen Keller, My Religion, 1927.

Poetry and Literature

A poet's pleasure is to withhold a little of his meaning, to intensify by mystification. He unzips the veil from beauty, but does not remove it. E. B. White, "Poetry," One Man's Meat, 1944.

Science is for those who learn; poetry, for those who know. Joseph Roux, Meditations of a Parish Priest, 1886, (1.71, translated by Isabel F. Hapgood).

Literature is the human activity that make the fullest and most precise account of variousness, possibility, complexity, and difficulty. Lionel Trilling, preface, The Liberal Imagination, 1950.

It is in literature that the concrete outlook of humanity receives its expression. Alfred North Whitehead, Science and the Modern World, 1925.

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