Centre of equal daughters, equal sons,
All, all alike endear’d, grown, ungrown, young or old,
Strong, ample, fair, enduring, capable, rich,
Perennial with the Earth, with Freedom, Law and Love,
A grand, sane, towering, seated Mother,
Chair’d in the adamant of Time.
—Walt Whitman, “America”
Say that we come, and come by this day’s light;
Fly upon swiftest wing round field and height
But chiefly let one Cottage hear the tale;
There let a mystery of joy prevail,
The kitten frolic, like a gamesome sprite,
— William Wordsworth, Fly, Some Kind Harbinger, to Grasmere-dale
An orphan now, cut from the mother earth
By the keen ax, dishonor’d of its hair,
And cas’d in brass, for Latian kings to bear.”
When thus in public view the peace was tied
With solemn vows, and sworn on either side,
All dues perform’d which holy rites require
- The Aeneid of Virgil: Book 12
He knew now the one thing of importance; and that one thing was at first there, in the drawing-room, and then began moving across and came to a standstill at the door.
- Leo Tolstoy, Anna Karenin
Thou art sweet as the smile when fond lovers meet,
And soft as their parting tear
- Robert Burns, A Health to ane I loe dear
But battle-death seized
and cruel killing my clansmen all,
robbed them of life and a liegeman’s joys.
None have I left to lift the sword, or to cleanse the carven cup of price,
beaker bright. My brave are gone.
And the helmet hard, all haughty with gold,
shall part from its plating.
"Then a man comes along, sees her, and ruins her life because he has nothing better to do. Destroys her like this seagull here."
Chekhov, The Seagull
[photo via Chicago Tribune]