February 25, 2023 - Reading time: ~1 minute
God has lent us the earth for our life; it is a great entail. It belongs as much to those who are to come after us, and whose names are already written in the book of creation, as to us; and we have no right, by anything that we do or neglect, to involve them in unnecessary penalties, or deprive them of benefits which it was in our power to bequeath. And this the more, because it is one of the appointed conditions of the labor of men that, in proportion to the time between the seed-sowing and the harvest, is the fulness of the fruit; and that generally, therefore, the farther off we place our aim, and the less we desire to be ourselves the witnesses of what we have labored for, the more wide and rich will be the measure of our success. Men cannot benefit those that are with them as they can benefit those who come after them; and of all the pulpits from which human voice is ever sent forth, there is none from which it reaches so far as from the grave.

—John Ruskin, from The Seven Lamps of Architecture (1849)

{via newsletter}

November 30, 2011 - Reading time: ~1 minute

Photograph by Julie G (Herding Grasshoppers).

November 29, 2011 - Reading time: ~1 minute

Photograph by Julie G (Herding Grasshoppers).

All is not said

November 9, 2009 - Reading time: 3 minutes

But all has not been said, for words are the shadow and the light of things and things are only what is being born and being;
And so when there is no bread we need only sit and await the new day, and the new day will bring us bread;
In the heart of the hungry man despair lays its traps and the man weeps and curses;

But all is not said,
And a man does ill to weep and curse when to sit and hope is well;
For as bread comes, comes one who does not know his name yet knows he is called by many names;
One to whom women speak, telling the secrets of women and those of the house and village;
And he who is to come depends on no one, has no one, has nothing: he must make his sandals and his pouches and weave his cloting and braid his belts;
For this he must find for himself food and drink and sleep and shelter and guard himself from the perils of solitude;
And he who is to come must go, always, for there is no whole or true coming or arrival without leaving and departure;

But all is not said, for he goes and comes and goes again;
And he who is to come will be unarmed and will refuse arms though they are made and adorned for him;
And he who is to come will be he who secures the roofs and foundations of your house, he who draws from death and the depths those who are all but lost, he who sees your city and your house because he can se the world, he who knows nothing and may be seen by all for what he is;

For all is not said because night follows day and the wise man sleeps until sunrise;
But the brave man's eyes are open and he keeps watch for his brother;
And the woman who rules your house and the daughters she has given you, who knows more than your head, your heart, and your belly, accept the night and subdue it and so night works for your good and that of your people;
But he who is to come is he who arises against the night and says to it, Begone;
For this death comes and does his work like a good workman earning his pay;

But all is not said because absence and presence are not opposites but one same and single thing;
For as a moment takes no time though it seems that time is a succession of moments, so a man is not gone though he seems gone: where could he go? When?

No, all is not said because he has gone and returned and goes and returns and will go and will return;
For this when you sit in the kitchen of your house ask your wife and she will tell you to open your eyes by day and close them by night, that this is best to do, because he who came and went away is to return;

No, all is not said.

Kalpa Imperial, chapter "Down There in the South",
Angélica Gorodischer (translated by Ursula K. le Guin)

February 10, 2009 - Reading time: ~1 minute

"I leave now" she said,
as the leaves that were green,
turned to brown.

And as I remember,
She was a right bonny lass

—Windsong (2004)