THE thousand injuries of Fortunato I had borne as I best could, but when he ventured upon insult I vowed revenge. You, who so well know the nature of my soul, will not suppose, however, that gave utterance to a threat. At length I would be avenged; this was a point definitely, settled --but the very definitiveness with which it was resolved precluded the idea of risk. I must not only punish but punish with impunity. A wrong is unredressed when retribution overtakes its redresser. It is equally unredressed when the avenger fails to make himself felt as such to... Read more »
Tell a scoundrel, three or four times a day, that he is the pink of probity, and you make him at least the perfection of "respectability" in good earnest. On the other hand, accuse an honorable man, too petinaciously, of being a villain, and you fill him with a perverse ambition to show you that you are not altogether in the wrong.
And travellers, now, within that valley, Through the red-litten windows see Vast forms, that move fantastically To a discordant melody, While, like a ghastly rapid river, Through the pale door A hideous throng rush out forever And laugh — but smile no more.
There are some secrets which do not permit themselves to be told. Men die nightly in their beds, wringing the hands of ghostly confessors, and looking them piteously in the eyes - die with despair of heart and convulsion of throat, on account of the hideousness of mysteries which will not suffer themselves to be revealed. Now and then, alas, the conscience of man takes up a burden so heavy in horror that it can be thrown down only into the grave. And thus the essence of all crime is undivulged.
But our love was stronger by far than the love Of those who were older than we Of many far wiser than we And neither the angels in heaven above, Nor the demons down under the sea, Can ever dissever my soul from the soul Of the beautiful Annabel Lee.
Thou wouldst be loved? - then let thy heart From its present pathway part not! Being everything which now thou art, Be nothing which thou art not. So with the world thy gentle ways, Thy grace, thy more than beauty, Shall be an endless theme of praise, And love - a simple duty.
With me poetry has been not a purpose, but a passion; and the passions should be held in reverence: they must not they cannot at will be excited, with an eye to the paltry compensations, or the more paltry commendations, of mankind.
The realities of the world affected me as visions, and as visions only, while the wild ideas of the land of dreams became, in turn,—not the material of my every-day existence--but in very deed that existence utterly and solely in itself.
No thinking being lives who, at some luminous point of his life of thought, has not felt himself lost amid the surges of futile efforts at understanding, or believing, that anything exists greater than his own soul.
Were I called on to define, very briefly, the term Art, I should call it 'the reproduction of what the Senses perceive in Nature through the veil of the soul.' The mere imitation, however accurate, of what is in Nature, entitles no man to the sacred name of 'Artist.'
There is then no analogy whatever between the operations of the Chess-Player, and those of the calculating machine of Mr. Babbage , and if we choose to call the former a pure machine we must be prepared to admit that it is, beyond all comparison, the most wonderful of the inventions of mankind.
The fury of a demon instantly possessed me. I knew myself no longer. My original soul seemed, at once, to take its flight from my body; and a more than fiendish malevolence, gin-nurtured, thrilled every fibre of my frame.
Hear the sledges with the bells, Silver bells! What a world of merriment their melody foretells! How they tinkle, tinkle, tinkle, In the icy air of night, While the stars that oversprinkle All the Heavens seem to twinkle With a crystalline delight: Keeping time, time, time, In a sort of Runic rhyme To the tintinnabulation that so musically wells From the bells, bells, bells, bells, Bells, bells, bells-- From the jingling and the tingling of the bells.
I am excessively slothful, and wonderfully industrious-by fits. There are epochs when any kind of mental exercise is torture, and when nothing yields me pleasure but the solitary communion with the 'mountains & the woods'-the 'altars' of Byron. I have thus rambled and dreamed away whole months, and awake, at last, to a sort of mania for composition. Then I scribble all day, and read all night, so long as the disease endures.
Not hear it? --yes, I hear it, and have heard it. Long --long --long --many minutes, many hours, many days, have I heard it --yet I dared not --oh, pity me, miserable wretch that I am! --I dared not --I dared not speak! We have put her living in the tomb!
If we examine a work of ordinary art, by means of a powerful microscope, all traces of resemblance to nature will disappear - but the closest scrutiny of the photogenic drawing discloses only a more absolute truth, a more perfect identity of aspect with the thing represented.
I am SHADOW, and my dwelling is near to the Catacombs of Ptolemais, and hard by those dim plains of Helusion which border upon the foul Charonian canal." And then did we, the seven, start from our seats in horror, and stand trembling, and shuddering, and aghast, for the tones in the voice of the shadow were not the tones of any one being, but of a multitude of beings, and, varying in their cadences from syllable to syllable fell duskly upon our ears in the well-remembered and familiar accents of many thousand departed friends.
The best chess-player in Christendom may be little more than the best player of chess; but proficiency in whist implies capacity for success in all those more important undertakings where mind struggles with mind.
If you have never been at sea in a heavy gale, you can form no idea of the confusion of mind occasioned by wind and spry together. They blind, deafen, and strangle you, and take away all power of action or reflection.
Men have called me mad; but the question is not yet settled, whether madness is or is not the loftiest intelligence– whether much that is glorious– whether all that is profound– does not spring from disease of thought– from moods of mind exalted at the expense of the general intellect.
The Bostonians are really, as a race, far inferior in point of anything beyond mere intellect to any other set upon the continent of North America. They are decidedly the most servile imitators of the English it is possible to conceive.
And have I not told you that what you mistake for madness is but over-acuteness of the sense? --now, I say, there came to my ears a low, dull, quick sound, such as a watch makes when enveloped in cotton. I knew that sound well, too. It was the beating of the old man's heart. It increased my fury, as the beating of a drum stimulates the soldier into courage.
Yes I now feel that it was then on that evening of sweet dreams- that the very first dawn of human love burst upon the icy night of my spirit. Since that period I have never seen nor heard your name without a shiver half of delight half of anxiety.
I never can hear a crowd of people singing and gesticulating, all together, at an Italian opera, without fancying myself at Athens, listening to that particular tragedy, by Sophocles, in which he introduces a full chorus of turkeys, who set about bewailing the death of Meleager.
A fearful instance of the ill consequences attending upon irascibility - alive, with the qualifications of the dead - dead, with the propensities of the living - an anomaly on the face of the earth - being very calm, yet breathless.
After reading all that has been written, and after thinking all that can be thought, on the topics of God and the soul, the man who has a right to say that he thinks at all, will find himself face to face with the conclusion that, on these topics, the most profound thought is that which can be the least easily distinguished from the most superficial sentiment.