Gentle Influence

Frederick Childe Hassam, ‘Moonlight, Isle of Shoals_, 1892,

“The moon does not fight. It attacks no one. It does not worry. It does not try to crush others. It keeps to its course, but by its very nature, it gently influences. What other body could pull an entire ocean from shore to shore? The moon is faithful to its nature and its power is never diminished.” 
 Ming-Dao Deng

Image: Frederick Childe Hassam, ‘Moonlight, Isle of Shoals’, 1892

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The Night Knows Nothing

Giacomo Balla - Poste

The night knows nothing of the chants of night.
It is what it is as I am what I am:
And in perceiving this I best perceive myself

And you. Only we two may interchange
Each in the other what each has to give.
Only we two are one, not you and night,

Nor night and I, but you and I, alone,
So much alone, so deeply by ourselves,
So far beyond the casual solitudes,

That night is only the background of our selves,
Supremely true each to its separate self,
In the pale light that each upon the other throws.

Wallace Stevens, Re-Statement of Romance, 1935

image: Giacomo Balla – Poste

 

If the Stars…

If the stars should appear but one night every thousand years, how man would marvel and stare. — Ralph Waldo Emerson

“When despair for the world grows in me and I wake in the night at the least sound in fear of what my life and my children’s lives may be, I go and lie down where the wood drake rests in his beauty on the water, and the great heron feeds. I come into the peace of wild things who do not tax their lives with forethought of grief. I come into the presence of still water. And I feel above me the day-blind stars waiting with their light. For a time I rest in the grace of the world, and am free.” Wendell Berry

Human speech is like a cracked kettle on which we tap crude rhythms for bears to dance to, while we long to make music that will melt the stars. — Gustave Flaubert