Cold Mountain Quotes

We've searched our database for all the quotes and captions related to Cold Mountain. Here they are! All 200 of them:

Suddenly this defeat. This rain. The blues gone gray And the browns gone gray And yellow A terrible amber. In the cold streets Your warm body. In whatever room Your warm body. Among all the people Your absence The people who are always Not you. I have been easy with trees Too long. Too familiar with mountains. Joy has been a habit. Now Suddenly This rain.
Jack Gilbert
There, peeping among the cloud-wrack above a dark tor high up in the mountains, Sam saw a white star twinkle for a while. The beauty of it smote his heart, as he looked up out of the forsaken land, and hope returned to him. For like a shaft, clear and cold, the thought pierced him that in the end the Shadow was only a small and passing thing: there was light and high beauty for ever beyond its reach.
J.R.R. Tolkien (The Return of the King (The Lord of the Rings, #3))
Far over the misty mountains cold To dungeons deep and caverns old We must away ere break of day To seek the pale enchanted gold. The dwarves of yore made mighty spells, While hammers fell like ringing bells In places deep, where dark things sleep, In hollow halls beneath the fells. For ancient king and elvish lord There many a gleaming golden hoard They shaped and wrought, and light they caught To hide in gems on hilt of sword. On silver necklaces they strung The flowering stars, on crowns they hung The dragon-fire, in twisted wire They meshed the light of moon and sun. Far over the misty mountains cold To dungeons deep and caverns old We must away, ere break of day, To claim our long-forgotten gold. Goblets they carved there for themselves And harps of gold; where no man delves There lay they long, and many a song Was sung unheard by men or elves. The pines were roaring on the height, The wind was moaning in the night. The fire was red, it flaming spread; The trees like torches blazed with light. The bells were ringing in the dale And men looked up with faces pale; The dragon's ire more fierce than fire Laid low their towers and houses frail. The mountain smoked beneath the moon; The dwarves, they heard the tramp of doom. They fled their hall to dying fall Beneath his feet, beneath the moon. Far over the misty mountains grim To dungeons deep and caverns dim We must away, ere break of day, To win our harps and gold from him!
J.R.R. Tolkien (The Hobbit)
He tried to name which of the deadly seven might apply, and when he failed he decided to append an eighth, regret.
Charles Frazier (Cold Mountain)
They call this war a cloud over the land. But they made the weather and then they stand in the rain and say 'Shit, it's raining!
Charles Frazier (Cold Mountain)
Perhaps in the world's destruction it would be possible at last to see how it was made. Oceans, mountains. The ponderous counterspectacle of things ceasing to be. The sweeping waste, hydroptic and coldly secular. The silence.
Cormac McCarthy (The Road)
What you have lost will not be returned to you; it always be lost. You’re left with only your scars to mark the void. All you can choose to do is go on, or not. But if you go on, it’s knowing you carry your scars with you.
Charles Frazier (Cold Mountain)
I'm ruined beyond repair, is what I fear...And if so, in time we'd both be wretched and bitter." "I know people can be mended. Not all, and some more immediately than others. But some can be. I don't see why not you." "Why not me?
Charles Frazier (Cold Mountain)
I have lots of things to teach you now, in case we ever meet, concerning the message that was transmitted to me under a pine tree in North Carolina on a cold winter moonlit night. It said that Nothing Ever Happened, so don't worry. It's all like a dream. Everything is ecstasy, inside. We just don't know it because of our thinking-minds. But in our true blissful essence of mind is known that everything is alright forever and forever and forever. Close your eyes, let your hands and nerve-ends drop, stop breathing for 3 seconds, listen to the silence inside the illusion of the world, and you will remember the lesson you forgot, which was taught in immense milky way soft cloud innumerable worlds long ago and not even at all. It is all one vast awakened thing. I call it the golden eternity. It is perfect. We were never really born, we will never really die. It has nothing to do with the imaginary idea of a personal self, other selves, many selves everywhere: Self is only an idea, a mortal idea. That which passes into everything is one thing. It's a dream already ended. There's nothing to be afraid of and nothing to be glad about. I know this from staring at mountains months on end. They never show any expression, they are like empty space. Do you think the emptiness of space will ever crumble away? Mountains will crumble, but the emptiness of space, which is the one universal essence of mind, the vast awakenerhood, empty and awake, will never crumble away because it was never born.
Jack Kerouac (The Portable Jack Kerouac)
[No] matter what a waste one has made of one's life, it is ever possible to find some path to redemption, however partial.
Charles Frazier (Cold Mountain)
I know I don't need him, but I think I want him.
Charles Frazier (Cold Mountain)
Marrying a woman for her beauty makes no more sense than eating a bird for its singing. But it's a common mistake nonetheless.
Charles Frazier (Cold Mountain)
...for you can grieve your heart out and in the end you are still where you were. All your grief hasn't changed a thing. What you have lost will not be returned to you. It will always be lost. You're only left with your scars to mark the void. All you can choose to do is go on or not.
Charles Frazier (Cold Mountain)
That's just pain she said. It goes eventually. And when it's gone, there's no lasting memory. Not the worst of it anyway. It fades. Our minds aren't made to hold on to the particulars of pain the way we do bliss. It's a gift God gives us, a sign of His care for us.
Charles Frazier (Cold Mountain)
What I'm certain I don't want is to find myself someday in a new century, an old bitter woman looking back, wishing that right now I'd had more nerve.
Charles Frazier (Cold Mountain)
He had been alone in the world and empty for so long. But she filled him full, and so he believed everything that had been taken out of him might have been for a purpose. To clear space for something better.
Charles Frazier (Cold Mountain)
Far over the misty mountains cold. To dungeons deep, and caverns old
J.R.R. Tolkien (The Hobbit)
I need you to do something for me." He snorted. "You mean other than deserting the army, scaling mountains, and freezing my ass off on the cold ground every night?" "Yes.
Leigh Bardugo (Shadow and Bone (The Shadow and Bone Trilogy, #1))
She fit her head under his chin, and he could feel her weight settle into him. He held her tight and words spilled out of him without prior composition. And this time he made no effort to clamp them off. He told her about the first time he had looked on the back of her neck as she sat in the church pew. Of the feeling that had never let go of him since. He talked to her of the great waste of years between then and now. A long time gone. And it was pointless, he said, to think how those years could have been put to better use, for he could hardly have put them to worse. There was no recovering them now. You could grieve endlessly for the loss of time and the damage done therein. For the dead, and for your own lost self. But what the wisdom of the ages says is that we do well not to grieve on and on. And those old ones knew a thing or two and had some truth to tell, Inman said, for you can grieve your heart out and in the end you are still where you are. All your grief hasn't changed a thing. What you have lost will not be returned to you. It will always be lost. You're left with only your scars to mark the void. All you can choose to do is go on or not. But if you go on, it's knowing you carry your scars with you. Nevertheless, over all those wasted years, he had held in his mind the wish to kiss her on the back of her neck, and now he had done it. There was a redemption of some kind, he believed, in such complete fulfillment of a desire so long deferred.
Charles Frazier (Cold Mountain)
Verbs. All of them tiring.
Charles Frazier (Cold Mountain)
That's not a thing any of us are granted. To go back. Wipe away what later doesn't suit us and make it the way we wish it. You just go on
Charles Frazier (Cold Mountain)
Everybody wants to be on the mountaintop, but if you'll remember, mountaintops are rocky and cold. There is no growth on the top of a mountain. Sure, the view is great, but what's a view for? A view just gives us a glimpse of our next destination-our next target. But to hit that target, we must come off the mountain, go through the valley, and begin to climb the next slope. It is in the valley that we slog through the lush grass and rich soil, learning and becoming what enables us to summit life's next peak.
Andy Andrews (The Noticer: Sometimes, All a Person Needs Is a Little Perspective)
Far over misty mountains cold To dungeons deep and caverns old We must away, ere break of day, To find our long-forgotten gold.
J.R.R. Tolkien (The Hobbit)
There is a solitude, which each and every one of us has always carried with him, more inaccessible than the ice-cold mountains, more profound than the midnight sea; the solitude of self. Our inner being, which we call ourself, no eye nor touch of man or angel has ever pierced.
Elizabeth Cady Stanton
The devil is no fool. He can get people feeling about heaven the way they ought to feel about hell. He can make them fear the means of grace the way they do not fear sin. And he does so, not by light but by obscurity, not by realities but by shadows; not by clarity and substance, but by dreams and the creatures of psychosis. And men are so poor in intellect that a few cold chills down their spine will be enough to keep them from ever finding out the truth about anything.
Thomas Merton (The Seven Storey Mountain)
She wondered if literature might lose some of its interest when she reached an age or state of mind where her life was set on such a sure course that the things she read might stop seeming so powerfully like alternate directions for her being.
Charles Frazier (Cold Mountain)
They say this war is a cloud over the land! But they make the weather and then they stand in the rain and say, ‘Shit, it’s raining!
Charles Frazier (Cold Mountain)
We mark some days as fair, some as foul, because we do not see that the character of every day as identical
Charles Frazier (Cold Mountain)
I had two dreams about him after he died. I dont remember the first one all that well but it was about meetin him in town somewheres and he give me some money and I think I lost it. But the second one it was like we was both back in older times and I was on horseback goin through the mountains of a night. Goin through this pass in the mountains. It was cold and there was snow on the ground and he rode past me and kept on goin. Never said nothin. He just rode on past and he had this blanket wrapped around him and he had his head down and when he rode past I seen he was carryin fire in a horn the way people used to do and I could see the horn from the light inside of it. About the color of the moon. And in the dream I knew that he was goin on ahead and that he was fixin to make a fire somewhere out there in all that dark and all that cold and I knew that whenever I got there he would be there. And then I woke up.
Cormac McCarthy (No Country for Old Men)
Symmetry is only a property of dead things. Did you ever see a tree or a mountain that was symmetrical? It’s fine for buildings, but if you ever see a symmetrical human face, you will have the impression that you ought to think it beautiful, but that in fact you find it cold. The human heart likes a little disorder in its geometry, Kyria Pelagia. Look at your face in a mirror, Signorina, and you will see that one eyebrow is a little higher than the other, that the set of the lid of your left eye is such that the eye is a fraction more open that the other. It is these things that make you both attractive and beautiful, whereas…otherwise you would be a statue. Symmetry is for God, not for us.
Louis de Bernières (Corelli's Mandolin)
Lada made her face stone, her heart a mountain. A mountain that would never be pierced to let cold, clear water flow. “Nothing holds me here.
Kiersten White (And I Darken (The Conqueror's Saga, #1))
There was a redemption of some kind, he believed, in such complete fulfillment of a desire so long deferred.
Charles Frazier (Cold Mountain)
Our minds aren't made to hold on to the particulars of pain the way we do bliss. It's a gift God gives us, a sign of His care for us.
Charles Frazier (Cold Mountain)
Our human tragedy is that we are unable to comprehend our experience, it slips through our fingers, we can't hold on to it, and the more time passes, the harder it gets...My father said that the natural world gave us explanations to compensate for the meanings we could not grasp. The slant of the cold sunlight on a winter pine, the music of water, an oar cutting the lake and the flight of birds, the mountains' nobility , the silence of the silence. We are given life but must accept that it is unattainable and rejoice in what can be held in the eye, the memory, the mind.
Salman Rushdie (Shalimar the Clown)
Are there bears in these mountains?" he asked. His companion nodded. "Of course. But it's a bit early in the year for them to be moving around. Why?" Halt let go a long breath. "Just a vague hope, really. There's a chance that when the Temujai here you crashing around in the trees, they might think you're a bear." Erak smiled, with his mouth only. His eyes were as cold as the snow. "You're a very amusing fellow," he told Halt. "I'd like to brain you with my ax one of these days." "If you could manage to do it quietly, I'd almost welcome it," Halt said.
John Flanagan (The Battle for Skandia (Ranger's Apprentice, #4))
Far over the Misty Mountains cold, To dungeons deep and caverns old, We must away, ere break of day, To seek our pale enchanted gold. The dwarves of yore made mighty spells, While hammers fell like ringing bells, In places deep, where dark things sleep, In hollow halls beneath the fells. The pines were roaring on the heights, The wind was moaning in the night, The fire was red, it flaming spread, The trees like torches blazed with light.
J.R.R. Tolkien (The Hobbit)
She was like the dust that clung to his shirt. She was in the silences that had become so frequent at the house, silences that welled up between their words, sometimes cold and hollow, sometimes pregnant with things that went unsaid, like a cloud filled with rain that never fell.
Khaled Hosseini (And the Mountains Echoed)
It is difficult to find anything more healthy to drink than good cold water, such as flows down to us from springs and snows of our mountains. This is the beverage we should drink. It should be our drink at all times.
Brigham Young (Journal of Discourses, Volume 12)
The leaves were long, the grass was green, The hemlock-umbels tall and fair, And in the glade a light was seen Of stars in shadow shimmering. Tinuviel was dancing there To music of a pipe unseen, And light of stars was in her hair, And in her raiment glimmering. There Beren came from mountains cold, And lost he wandered under leaves, And where the Elven-river rolled. He walked along and sorrowing. He peered between the hemlock-leaves And saw in wonder flowers of gold Upon her mantle and her sleeves, And her hair like shadow following. Enchantment healed his weary feet That over hills were doomed to roam; And forth he hastened, strong and fleet, And grasped at moonbeams glistening. Through woven woods in Elvenhome She lightly fled on dancing feet, And left him lonely still to roam In the silent forest listening. He heard there oft the flying sound Of feet as light as linden-leaves, Or music welling underground, In hidden hollows quavering. Now withered lay the hemlock-sheaves, And one by one with sighing sound Whispering fell the beechen leaves In the wintry woodland wavering. He sought her ever, wandering far Where leaves of years were thickly strewn, By light of moon and ray of star In frosty heavens shivering. Her mantle glinted in the moon, As on a hill-top high and far She danced, and at her feet was strewn A mist of silver quivering. When winter passed, she came again, And her song released the sudden spring, Like rising lark, and falling rain, And melting water bubbling. He saw the elven-flowers spring About her feet, and healed again He longed by her to dance and sing Upon the grass untroubling. Again she fled, but swift he came. Tinuviel! Tinuviel! He called her by her elvish name; And there she halted listening. One moment stood she, and a spell His voice laid on her: Beren came, And doom fell on Tinuviel That in his arms lay glistening. As Beren looked into her eyes Within the shadows of her hair, The trembling starlight of the skies He saw there mirrored shimmering. Tinuviel the elven-fair, Immortal maiden elven-wise, About him cast her shadowy hair And arms like silver glimmering. Long was the way that fate them bore, O'er stony mountains cold and grey, Through halls of iron and darkling door, And woods of nightshade morrowless. The Sundering Seas between them lay, And yet at last they met once more, And long ago they passed away In the forest singing sorrowless.
J.R.R. Tolkien (The Lord of the Rings)
One thing he discovered with a great deal of astonishment was that music held for him more then just pleasure. There was meat to it. The grouping of sounds, their forms in the air as they rang out and faded, said something comforting to him about the rule of Creation. What the music said was that there is a right way for things to be ordered so that life might not always be just tangle and drift, but have a shape, an aim. It was a powerful argument that life did not just happen.
Charles Frazier (Cold Mountain)
London The Institute Year of Our Lord 1878 “Mother, Father, my chwaer fach, It’s my seventeenth birthday today. I know that to write to you is to break the law, I know that I will likely tear this letter into pieces when it is finished. As I have done on all my birthdays past since I was twelve. But I write anyway, to commemorate the occasion - the way some make yearly pilgrimages to a grave, to remember the death of a loved one. For are we not dead to each other? I wonder if when you woke this morning you remembered that today, seventeen years ago, you had a son? I wonder if you think of me and imagine my life here in the Institute in London? I doubt you could imagine it. It is so very different from our house surrounded by mountains, and the great clear blue sky and the endless green. Here, everything is black and gray and brown, and the sunsets are painted in smoke and blood. I wonder if you worry that I am lonely or, as Mother always used to, that I am cold, that I have gone out into the rain again without a hat? No one here worries about those details. There are so many things that could kill us at any moment; catching a chill hardly seems important. I wonder if you knew that I could hear you that day you came for me, when I was twelve. I crawled under the bed to block out the sound of you crying my name, but I heard you. I heard mother call for her fach, her little one. I bit my hands until they bled but I did not come down. And, eventually, Charlotte convinced you to go away. I thought you might come again but you never did. Herondales are stubborn like that. I remember the great sighs of relief you would both give each time the Council came to ask me if I wished to join the Nephilim and leave my family, and each time I said no and I send them away. I wonder if you knew I was tempted by the idea of a life of glory, of fighting, of killing to protect as a man should. It is in our blood - the call to the seraph and the stele, to marks and to monsters. I wonder why you left the Nephilim, Father? I wonder why Mother chose not to Ascend and to become a Shadowhunter? Is it because you found them cruel or cold? I have no fathom side. Charlotte, especially, is kind to me, little knowing how much I do not deserve it. Henry is mad as a brush, but a good man. He would have made Ella laugh. There is little good to be said about Jessamine, but she is harmless. As little as there is good to say about her, there is as much good to say about Jem: He is the brother Father always thought I should have. Blood of my blood - though we are no relation. Though I might have lost everything else, at least I have gained one thing in his friendship. And we have a new addition to our household too. Her name is Tessa. A pretty name, is it not? When the clouds used to roll over the mountains from the ocean? That gray is the color of her eyes. And now I will tell you a terrible truth, since I never intend to send this letter. I came here to the Institute because I had nowhere else to go. I did not expect it to ever be home, but in the time I have been here I have discovered that I am a true Shadowhunter. In some way my blood tells me that this is what I was born to do.If only I had known before and gone with the Clave the first time they asked me, perhaps I could have saved Ella’s life. Perhaps I could have saved my own. Your Son, Will
Cassandra Clare (Clockwork Prince (The Infernal Devices, #2))
Clambering up the Cold Mountain path, The Cold Mountain trail goes on and on: The long gorge choked with scree and boulders, The wide creek, the mist-blurred grass. The moss is slippery, though there's been no rain The pine sings, but there's no wind. Who can leap the world's ties And sit with me among the white clouds?
Gary Snyder (Riprap and Cold Mountain Poems)
I'll tell you how the sun rose A ribbon at a time... It's a living book, this life; it folds out in a million settings, cast with a billion beautiful characters, and it is almost over for you. It doesn't matter how old you are; it is coming to a close quickly, and soon the credits will roll and all your friends will fold out of your funeral and drive back to their homes in cold and still and silence. And they will make a fire and pour some wine and think about how you once were . . . and feel a kind of sickness at the idea you never again will be. So soon you will be in that part of the book where you are holding the bulk of the pages in your left hand, and only a thin wisp of the story in your right. You will know by the page count, not by the narrative, that the Author is wrapping things up. You begin to mourn its ending, and want to pace yourself slowly toward its closure, knowing the last lines will speak of something beautiful, of the end of something long and earned, and you hope the thing closes out like last breaths, like whispers about how much and who the characters have come to love, and how authentic the sentiments feel when they have earned a hundred pages of qualification. And so my prayer is that your story will have involved some leaving and some coming home, some summer and some winter, some roses blooming out like children in a play. My hope is your story will be about changing, about getting something beautiful born inside of you, about learning to love a woman or a man, about learning to love a child, about moving yourself around water, around mountains, around friends, about learning to love others more than we love ourselves, about learning oneness as a way of understanding God. We get one story, you and I, and one story alone. God has established the elements, the setting and the climax and the resolution. It would be a crime not to venture out, wouldn't it?
Donald Miller (Through Painted Deserts: Light, God, and Beauty on the Open Road)
When men see Han-shan They all say he's crazy And not much to look at - Dressed in rags and hides. They don't get what I say And I don't talk their language. All I can say to those I meet: "Try and make it to Cold Mountain.
Gary Snyder (Riprap and Cold Mountain Poems)
When Ada disappeared into the trees, it was like a part of the richness of the world had gone with her. He had been alone in the world and empty for so long. But she filled him full, and so he believed everything that had been taken out of him might have been for a purpose. To clear space for something better. -Cold Mountain
Charles Frazier
She went to the window. A fine sheen of sugary frost covered everything in sight, and white smoke rose from chimneys in the valley below the resort town. The window opened to a rush of sharp early November air that would have the town in a flurry of activity, anticipating the tourists the colder weather always brought to the high mountains of North Carolina. She stuck her head out and took a deep breath. If she could eat the cold air, she would. She thought cold snaps were like cookies, like gingersnaps. In her mind they were made with white chocolate chunks and had a cool, brittle vanilla frosting. They melted like snow in her mouth, turning creamy and warm.
Sarah Addison Allen (The Sugar Queen)
And then she thought that you went on living one day after another, and in time you were somebody else, your previous self only like a close relative, a sister or brother, with whom you shared a past. But a different person, a separate life. Certainly neither she nor Inman were the people they had been the last time they were together. And she believed maybe she liked them both better now.
Charles Frazier (Cold Mountain)
Clouds sink down the hills Coffee is hot again. The dog Turns and turns about, stops and sleeps.
Gary Snyder (Riprap and Cold Mountain Poems)
A man called Ali is in need of money and asks his boss to help him. His Boss sets him a challenge: if he can spend all night at the top of a mountain, he will receive a great reward; if he fails, he will have to work for free. When he left the shop, Ali noticed that an icy wind was blowing. He felt afraid and decided to ask his best friend, Aydi, if he thought he was mad to accept the wager. After considering the matter for a moment Aydi answered, " Don't worry, I'll help you. Tomorrow night, when you're sitting on top of the mountain, look straight ahead. I'll be on top of the mountain opposite, where I'll keep a fire burning all night for you. Look at the fire and think of our friendship, and that will keep you warm. You'll make it through the night, and afterward, I'll ask you for something in return. Ali won the wager, got the money, and went to his friend's house. "you said you wanted some sort of payment in return." Aydi said, "Yes, but it isn't money. Promise that if ever a cold wind blows through my life, you will light the fire of friendship for me
Paulo Coelho (Aleph)
I consider it a mutual duty, that we owe to each other, to communicate in a spirit of the utmost frankness and candor. Let it ever be done with unlocked hearts.
Charles Frazier (Cold Mountain)
The man had asked, Why do you want sheep? The wool? Meat? Monroe's answer had been, For the atmosphere.
Charles Frazier (Cold Mountain)
If I had a brother in jail and one in Georgia, I'd try to bust the one out of Georgia first.
Charles Frazier (Cold Mountain)
He is so full of manure, that man, we could lay him in the dirt and grow another one just like him." Ruby about her dad in "Cold Mountain
Charles Frazier
I am a book. Sheaves pressed from the pulp of oaks and pines a natural sawdust made dingy from purses, dusty from shelves. Steamy and anxious, abused and misused, kissed and cried over, smeared, yellowed, and torn, loved, hated, scorned. I am a book. I am a book that remembers, days when I stood proud in good company When the children came, I leapt into their arms, when the women came, they cradled me against their soft breasts, when the men came, they held me like a lover, and I smelled the sweet smell of cigars and brandy as we sat together in leather chairs, next to pool tables, on porch swings, in rocking chairs, my words hanging in the air like bright gems, dangling, then forgotten, I crumbled, dust to dust. I am a tale of woe and secrets, a book brand-new, sprung from the loins of ancient fathers clothed in tweed, born of mothers in lands of heather and coal soot. A family too close to see the blood on its hands, too dear to suffering, to poison, to cold steel and revenge, deaf to the screams of mortal wounding, amused at decay and torment, a family bred in the dankest swamp of human desires. I am a tale of woe and secrets, I am a mystery. I am intrigue, anxiety, fear, I tangle in the night with madmen, spend my days cloaked in black, hiding from myself, from dark angels, from the evil that lurks within and the evil we cannot lurk without. I am words of adventure, of faraway places where no one knows my tongue, of curious cultures in small, back alleys, mean streets, the crumbling house in each of us. I am primordial fear, the great unknown, I am life everlasting. I touch you and you shiver, I blow in your ear and you follow me, down foggy lanes, into places you've never seen, to see things no one should see, to be someone you could only hope to be. I ride the winds of imagination on a black-and-white horse, to find the truth inside of me, to cure the ills inside of you, to take one passenger at a time over that tall mountain, across that lonely plain to a place you've never been where the world stops for just one minute and everything is right. I am a mystery. -Rides a Black and White Horse
Lise McClendon
There, peeping among the cloud-wrack above a dark tor high up in the mountains, Sam saw a white star twinkle for a while. The beauty of it smote his heart, as he looked up out of the forsaken land, and hope returned to him. For like a shaft, clear and cold, the thought pierced him that in the end the Shadow was only a small and passing thing: there was a light and high beauty for ever beyond its reach. His song in the Tower had been defiance rather than hope; for then he was thinking of himself. Now, for a moment, his own fate, and even his master’s, ceased to trouble him. He crawled back into the brambles and laid himself by Frodo’s side, and putting away all fear he cast himself into a deep untroubled sleep.
J.R.R. Tolkien (The Lord of the Rings)
At the first gesture of morning, flies began stirring.
Charles Frazier (Cold Mountain)
I wanted a good place to settle: Cold Mountain would be safe. Light wind in a hidden pine - Listen close - the sound gets better. Under it a gray haired man Mumbles along reading Huang and Lao. For ten years I havn't gone back home I've even forgotten the way by which I came.
Gary Snyder (Riprap and Cold Mountain Poems)
And it was pointless...to think how those years could have been put to better use, for he could hardly have put them to worse. There was no recovering them now. You could grieve endlessly for the loss of time and for the damage done therein. For the dead, and for your own lost self. But what the wisdom of the ages says is that we do well not to grieve on and on. And those old ones knew a thing or two and had some truth to tell...for you can grieve your heart out and in the end you are still where you were. All your grief hasn't changed a thing. What you have lost will not be returned to you. It will always be lost. You're left with only your scars to mark the void. All you can choose to do is to go on or not. But if you go on, it's knowing you carry your scars with you.
Charles Frazier (Cold Mountain)
God spreads the heavens above us like great wings And gives a little round of deeds and days, And then come the wrecked angels and set snares, And bait them with light hopes and heavy dreams, Until the heart is puffed with pride and goes Half shuddering and half joyous from God's peace; And it was some wrecked angel, blind with tears, Who flattered Edane's heart with merry words. Come, faeries, take me out of this dull house! Let me have all the freedom I have lost; Work when I will and idle when I will! Faeries, come take me out of this dull world, For I would ride with you upon the wind, Run on the top of the dishevelled tide, And dance upon the mountains like a flame. I would take the world And break it into pieces in my hands To see you smile watching it crumble away. Once a fly dancing in a beam of the sun, Or the light wind blowing out of the dawn, Could fill your heart with dreams none other knew, But now the indissoluble sacrament Has mixed your heart that was most proud and cold With my warm heart for ever; the sun and moon Must fade and heaven be rolled up like a scroll But your white spirit still walk by my spirit. When winter sleep is abroad my hair grows thin, My feet unsteady. When the leaves awaken My mother carries me in her golden arms; I'll soon put on my womanhood and marry The spirits of wood and water, but who can tell When I was born for the first time? The wind blows out of the gates of the day, The wind blows over the lonely of heart, And the lonely of heart is withered away; While the faeries dance in a place apart, Shaking their milk-white feet in a ring, Tossing their milk-white arms in the air; For they hear the wind laugh and murmur and sing Of a land where even the old are fair, And even the wise are merry of tongue; But I heard a reed of Coolaney say-- When the wind has laughed and murmured and sung, The lonely of heart is withered away.
W.B. Yeats (The Land of Heart's Desire)
To keep Velaris safe, to keep Mor and Amren and Cassian and Azriel and… Rhys safe. I said to Lucien, low and quiet and as vicious as the talons that formed at the tips of my fingers, as vicious as the wondrous weight between my shoulder blades, “When you spend so long trapped in darkness, Lucien, you find that the darkness begins to stare back.” A pulse of surprise, of wicked delight against my mental shields, at the dark, membranous wings I knew were now poking over my shoulders. Every icy kiss of rain sent jolts of cold through me. Sensitive—so sensitive, these Illryian wings. Lucien backed up a step. “What did you do to yourself?” I gave him a little smile. “The human girl you knew died Under the Mountain. I have no interest in spending immortality as a High Lord’s pet.” Lucien started shaking his head. “Feyre—” “Tell Tamlin,” I said, choking on his name, on the thought of what he’d done to Rhys, to his family, “if he sends anyone else into these lands, I will hunt each and every one of you down. And I will demonstrate exactly what the darkness taught me.” There was something like genuine pain on his face. I didn’t care. I just watched him, unyielding and cold and dark. The creature I might one day have become if I had stayed at the Spring Court, if I had remained broken for decades, centuries… until I learned to quietly direct those shards of pain outward, learned to savor the pain of others.
Sarah J. Maas (A Court of Mist and Fury (A Court of Thorns and Roses, #2))
Needing and getting don’t seem likely to match up any time soon... What needs doing is mine to do.
Charles Frazier (Cold Mountain)
The stars drew light across the night sky in that little mountain village, and the silence and the cold made the darkness vanish away. It was - I don't know how to explain it - as if everything solid melted away into the ether, eliminating all individualtiy and absorbing us, rigid, into the immense darkness. Not a single cloud to lend perspective to the space blocked any portion of the starry sky.
Ernesto Che Guevara
I close my eyes again. There’s the smell of mountain snow on the air. I shiver. I would have brought a coat if I’d known I was going to be in Wyoming today. I’m a wuss about cold. You’re my California flower, I remember Tucker saying to me once. We were sitting on the pasture fence at the Lazy Dog, watching his dad break in a colt, the leaves in the trees red just like they are today. I started shivering so hard my teeth actually began to chatter, and Tucker laughed at me and called me that—his delicate California flower— and wrapped me in his coat.
Cynthia Hand (Boundless (Unearthly, #3))
It's a good thing war is so terrible or else we'd get to liking it too much.
Charles Frazier (Cold Mountain)
...she knew in her heart that nature has a preference for a particular order: parents die, then children die. But it was a harsh design, offering little relief from pain, for being in accord with it means that the fortunate find themselves orphaned.
Charles Frazier (Cold Mountain)
An afternoon drive from Los Angeles will take you up into the high mountains, where eagles circle above the forests and the cold blue lakes, or out over the Mojave Desert, with its weird vegetation and immense vistas. Not very far away are Death Valley, and Yosemite, and Sequoia Forest with its giant trees which were growing long before the Parthenon was built; they are the oldest living things in the world. One should visit such places often, and be conscious, in the midst of the city, of their surrounding presence. For this is the real nature of California and the secret of its fascination; this untamed, undomesticated, aloof, prehistoric landscape which relentlessly reminds the traveller of his human condition and the circumstances of his tenure upon the earth. "You are perfectly welcome," it tells him, "during your short visit. Everything is at your disposal. Only, I must warn you, if things go wrong, don't blame me. I accept no responsibility. I am not part of your neurosis. Don't cry to me for safety. There is no home here. There is no security in your mansions or your fortresses, your family vaults or your banks or your double beds. Understand this fact, and you will be free. Accept it, and you will be happy.
Christopher Isherwood (Exhumations)
As the glow of the cabin windows turned to flickers through the trees and then to black, her eyes adjusted and the starlight alone on the pure white snow was enough to light her way. The cold scorched her cheeks and her lungs, but she was warm in her fox hat and wool. An owl swooped through the spruce boughs, a slow-flying shadow, but she was not frightened. She felt old and strong, like the mountains and the river. She would find her way home.
Eowyn Ivey (The Snow Child)
We often hesitate to follow our intuition out of fear. Most usually, we are afraid of the changes in our own life that our actions will bring. Intuitive guidance, however, is all about change. It is energetic data ripe with the potential to influence the rest of the world. To fear change but to crave intuitive clarity is like fearing the cold, dark night while pouring water on the fire that lights your cave. An insight the size of a mustard seed is powerful enough to bring down a mountain-sized illusion that may be holding our lives together. Truth strikes without mercy. We fear our intuitions because we fear the transformational power within our revelations.
Caroline Myss
I have lived at Cold Mountain These thirty long years. Yesterday I called on friends and family: More than half had gone to the Yellow Springs. Slowly consumed, like fire down a candle; Forever flowing, like a passing river. Now, morning, I face my lone shadow: Suddenly my eyes are bleared with tears.
Gary Snyder (Riprap and Cold Mountain Poems)
Beautiful she is, sir! Lovely! Sometimes like a great tree in flower, sometimes like a white daffadowndilly, small and slender like. Hard as di’monds, soft as moonlight. Warm as sunlight, cold as frost in the stars. Proud and far-off as a snow-mountain, and as merry as any lass I ever saw with daisies in her hair in springtime.
J.R.R. Tolkien (The Two Towers (The Lord of the Rings, #2))
This happened in 1932, when the state penitentiary was still at Cold Mountain. And the electric chair was there, too, of course.
Stephen King (The Green Mile)
I’m sixty-eight” he said, “I first bucked hay when I was seventeen. I thought, that day I started, I sure would hate to do this all my life. And dammit, that’s just what I’ve gone and done.
Gary Snyder (Riprap and Cold Mountain Poems)
A pulse of surprise, of wicked delight against my mental shields, at the dark, membranous wings I knew were now poking over my shoulders. Every icy kiss of rain sent jolts of cold through me. Sensitive-so sensitive, these Illyrian wings. Lucien backed up at step. "What did you do to yourself?" I gave him a little smile. "The human girl you knew died Under the Mountain. I have no interest in spending immortality as a High Lord's pet
Sarah J. Maas (A Court of Mist and Fury (A Court of Thorns and Roses, #2))
My soul is calm and clear, like the mountains in the morning. But they think I am cold, and a mocker with terrible jests.
Friedrich Nietzsche (Thus Spoke Zarathustra)
Snow’s not good. It’s just cold water gone wrong.” “Mountains.
Mark Lawrence (Prince of Fools (The Red Queen's War, #1))
He was himself a case in point, and perhaps not a rare one, for his spirit, it seemed, had been burned out of him but he was yet walking.
Charles Frazier (Cold Mountain)
the path to contentment was to abide by one's own nature and follow it's path.
Charles Frazier (Cold Mountain)
In his eyes shone the reflection of the most beautiful planet in the Universe---a planet that is not too hot and not too cold; that has liquid water on the surface and where the gravity is just right for human beings and the atmosphere is perfect for them to breathe; where there are mountains and deserts and oceans and islands and forests and trees and birds and plants and animals and insects and people---lots and lots of people. Where there is life. Some of it, possibly, intelligent.
Stephen Hawking (George's Cosmic Treasure Hunt)
The vivid memory of the woods had blossomed into a visceral longing for the Ridge, so immediate that I felt the ghost of my vanished house rise around me, a cold mountain wind thrumming past its walls, and thought that, if I reached down, I could feel Adso's soft gray fur under my fingers. I swallowed, hard.
Diana Gabaldon (Written in My Own Heart's Blood (Outlander, #8))
Bleak as the scene was, though, there was growing joy in Inman's heart. He was nearing home; he could feel it in the touch of thin air on skin, in his longing to see the lead of hearth smoke from the houses of people he had known all his life. People he would not be called upon to hate or fear. He rose and took a wide stance on the rock and stood and pinched down his eyes to sharpen the view across the vast propect to one far mountain. It stood apart from the sky only as the stroke of a poorly inked pen, a line thin and quick and gestural. But the shape slowly grew plain and unmistakable. It was to Cold Mountain he looked. He had achieved a vista of what for him was homeland.
Charles Frazier (Cold Mountain)
To the Technocrats: Have mercy on us. Relax a bit, take time out for simple pleasures. For example, the luxuries of electricity, indoor plumbing, central heating, instant electronic communication and such, have taught me to relearn and enjoy the basic human satisfactions of dipping water from a cold clear mountain stream; of building a wood fire in a cast-iron stove; of using long winter nights for making music, making things, making love; of writing long letters, in longhand with a fountain pen, to the few people on this earth I truly care about.
Edward Abbey (Postcards from Ed: Dispatches and Salvos from an American Iconoclast)
All things bright and beautiful, All creatures great and small, All things wise and wonderful, The Lord God made them all. Each little flower that opens, Each little bird that sings, He made their glowing colours, He made their tiny wings. The purple headed mountain, The river running by, The sunset, and the morning, That brightens up the sky. The cold wind in the winter, The pleasent summer sun, The ripe fruit in the garden, He made them every one. He gave us eyes to see them, And lips that we might tell, How great is God Almighty, Who has made all things well.
Cecil Frances Alexander
I read somewhere that flying is like throwing your soul into the heavens and racing to catch it as it falls." "I don't think mine would ever fall," he murmured, looking at the clear cold sky.
Linda Howard (Mackenzie's Mountain (Mackenzie Family, #1))
Being tender and open is beautiful. As a woman, I feel continually shhh’ed. Too sensitive. Too mushy. Too wishy washy. Blah blah. Don’t let someone steal your tenderness. Don’t allow the coldness and fear of others to tarnish your perfectly vulnerable beating heart. Nothing is more powerful than allowing yourself to truly be affected by things. Whether it’s a song, a stranger, a mountain, a rain drop, a tea kettle, an article, a sentence, a footstep, feel it all – look around you. All of this is for you. Take it and have gratitude. Give it and feel love.
Zooey Deschanel
Some believers accuse skeptics of having nothing left but a dull, cold, scientific world. I am left with only art, music, literature, theatre, the magnificence of nature, mathematics, the human spirit, sex, the cosmos, friendship, history, science, imagination, dreams, oceans, mountains, love, and the wonder of birth. That’ll do for me.
Lynne Kelly
Shortly afterwards it started raining, very innocently at first, but the sky was packed tight with cloud and gradually the drops grew bigger and heavier, until it was autumn’s dismal rain that was falling—rain that seemed to fill the entire world with its leaden beat, rain suggestive in its dreariness of everlasting waterfalls between the planets, rain that thatched the heavens with drabness and brooded oppressively over the whole countryside, like a disease, strong in the power of its flat, unvarying monotony, its smothering heaviness, its cold, unrelenting cruelty. Smoothly, smoothly it fell, over the whole shire, over the fallen marsh grass, over the troubled lake, the iron-grey gravel flats, the sombre mountain above the croft, smudging out every prospect. And the heavy, hopeless, interminable beat wormed its way into every crevice in the house, lay like a pad of cotton wool over the ears, and embraced everything, both near and far, in its compass, like an unromantic story from life itself that has no rhythm and no crescendo, no climax, but which is nevertheless overwhelming in its scope, terrifying in its significance. And at the bottom of this unfathomed ocean of teeming rain sat the little house and its one neurotic woman.
Halldór Laxness (Independent People)
A Kite is a Victim A kite is a victim you are sure of. You love it because it pulls gentle enough to call you master, strong enough to call you fool; because it lives like a desperate trained falcon in the high sweet air, and you can always haul it down to tame it in your drawer. A kite is a fish you have already caught in a pool where no fish come, so you play him carefully and long, and hope he won't give up, or the wind die down. A kite is the last poem you've written so you give it to the wind, but you don't let it go until someone finds you something else to do. A kite is a contract of glory that must be made with the sun, so you make friends with the field the river and the wind, then you pray the whole cold night before, under the travelling cordless moon, to make you worthy and lyric and pure. Gift You tell me that silence is nearer to peace than poems but if for my gift I brought you silence (for I know silence) you would say This is not silence this is another poem and you would hand it back to me There are some men There are some men who should have mountains to bear their names through time Grave markers are not high enough or green and sons go far away to lose the fist their father’s hand will always seem I had a friend he lived and died in mighty silence and with dignity left no book son or lover to mourn. Nor is this a mourning song but only a naming of this mountain on which I walk fragrant, dark and softly white under the pale of mist I name this mountain after him. -Believe nothing of me Except that I felt your beauty more closely than my own. I did not see any cities burn, I heard no promises of endless night, I felt your beauty more closely than my own. Promise me that I will return.- -When you call me close to tell me your body is not beautiful I want to summon the eyes and hidden mouths of stone and light and water to testify against you.- Song I almost went to bed without remembering the four white violets I put in the button-hole of your green sweater and how i kissed you then and you kissed me shy as though I'd never been your lover -Reach into the vineyard of arteries for my heart. Eat the fruit of ignorance and share with me the mist and fragrance of dying.-
Leonard Cohen (The Spice-Box of Earth)
I Have Decided I have decided to find myself a home in the mountains, somewhere high up where one learns to live peacefully in the cold and the silence. It’s said that in such a place certain revelations may be discovered. That what the spirit reaches for may be eventually felt, if not exactly understood. Slowly, no doubt. I’m not talking about a vacation. Of course at the same time I mean to stay exactly where I am. Are you following me?
Mary Oliver (A Thousand Mornings: Poems)
The scar on my chest, the beating of my heart, and the mountains that fostered my appreciation for the cold, hard, natural world—these were the few things that mattered.
Daniel Wallock (Right-Hearted: Finding What's Right With a Wrong-Sided Heart)
It gets cold in the desert at night, particularly up in the mountains; the stars hammer on the rock and strike frost.
Tanith Lee (Biting the Sun (Four-BEE, #1-2))
There was nothing about her story remarkable other than that it was her life.
Charles Frazier (Cold Mountain)
He said, I've been coming for you on a hard road. I'm never letting you go. Never.
Charles Frazier (Cold Mountain)
yoga soul today. instant resonation. Spring Somewhere a black bear has just risen from sleep and is staring down the mountain. All night in the brisk and shallow restlessness of early spring I think of her, her four black fists flicking the gravel, her tongue like a red fire touching the grass, the cold water. There is only one question: how to love this world. I think of her rising like a black and leafy ledge to sharpen her claws against the silence of the trees. Whatever else my life is with its poems and its music and its cities, it is also this dazzling darkness coming down the mountain, breathing and tasting; all day I think of her – her white teeth, her wordlessness, her perfect love.
Mary Oliver
The sun was just coming up over the mountains--blood red and cold. I felt as if I was standing in the mightiest cathedral that had ever been built. There was no end to it, and no beginning. All I could do was look at it and worship.
Robert Specht (Tisha: The Wonderful True Love Story of a Young Teacher in the Alaskan Wilderness)
They were both at such an age that they stood on a cusp. They could think in one part of their minds that their whole lives stretched out before them without boundary or limit. At the same time another part guessed that youth was about over for them and what lay ahead was another country entirely, wherein the possibilities narrowed down moment by moment.
Charles Frazier
almost everyone I’ve ever loved is dead. And the only way to live with the constant cull of what you love is to take a little of that cold grave into yourself, every time.
Gregory David Roberts (The Mountain Shadow)
Even if you took it as cascading snowy mountains,it was not a cool snow-white. The cold of the snow and it's warm colour made a kind of music.
Yasunari Kawabata (Beauty and Sadness)
To Ada, Ruby’s monologues seemed composed mainly of verbs, all of them tiring. Plow, plant, hoe, cut, can, feed, kill.
Charles Frazier (Cold Mountain)
I knew by the signs it would be a hard winter. The hollies bore a heavy crop of berries and birds stripped them bare. Crows quarreled in reaped fields and owls cried in the mountains, mournful as widows. Fur and moss grew thicker than usual. Cold rains came, driven sideways through the trees by north winds, and snows followed.
Sarah Micklem (Firethorn (Firethorn, #1))
Max" Shauna greeted him, her voice a contented purr than she looked at me and her eyes grew cold. "Nina." "She bitch from hell" I replied, Bitsy's head shot around and she looked at me with wide eyes, her fear had disappears, delighted astonishment in its place while Max grunted his amusement.
Kristen Ashley (The Gamble (Colorado Mountain, #1))
What would you have me do? Seek for the patronage of some great man, And like a creeping vine on a tall tree Crawl upward, where I cannot stand alone? No thank you! Dedicate, as others do, Poems to pawnbrokers? Be a buffoon In the vile hope of teasing out a smile On some cold face? No thank you! Eat a toad For breakfast every morning? Make my knees Callous, and cultivate a supple spine,- Wear out my belly grovelling in the dust? No thank you! Scratch the back of any swine That roots up gold for me? Tickle the horns Of Mammon with my left hand, while my right Too proud to know his partner's business, Takes in the fee? No thank you! Use the fire God gave me to burn incense all day long Under the nose of wood and stone? No thank you! Shall I go leaping into ladies' laps And licking fingers?-or-to change the form- Navigating with madrigals for oars, My sails full of the sighs of dowagers? No thank you! Publish verses at my own Expense? No thank you! Be the patron saint Of a small group of literary souls Who dine together every Tuesday? No I thank you! Shall I labor night and day To build a reputation on one song, And never write another? Shall I find True genius only among Geniuses, Palpitate over little paragraphs, And struggle to insinuate my name In the columns of the Mercury? No thank you! Calculate, scheme, be afraid, Love more to make a visit than a poem, Seek introductions, favors, influences?- No thank you! No, I thank you! And again I thank you!-But... To sing, to laugh, to dream To walk in my own way and be alone, Free, with a voice that means manhood-to cock my hat Where I choose-At a word, a Yes, a No, To fight-or write.To travel any road Under the sun, under the stars, nor doubt If fame or fortune lie beyond the bourne- Never to make a line I have not heard In my own heart; yet, with all modesty To say:"My soul, be satisfied with flowers, With fruit, with weeds even; but gather them In the one garden you may call your own." So, when I win some triumph, by some chance, Render no share to Caesar-in a word, I am too proud to be a parasite, And if my nature wants the germ that grows Towering to heaven like the mountain pine, Or like the oak, sheltering multitudes- I stand, not high it may be-but alone!
Edmond Rostand (Cyrano de Bergerac)
Ruby said there were many songs that you could not say anybody in particular had made by himself. A song went around from fiddler to fiddler and each one added something and took something away so that in time the song became a different thing from what it had been, barely recognizable in either tune or lyric. But you could not say the song had been improved, for as was true of all human effort, there was never advancement. Everything added meant something lost, and about as often as not the thing lost was preferable to the thing gained, so that over time we'd be lucky if we just broke even. Any thought otherwise was empty pride.
Charles Frazier (Cold Mountain)
His spells portrayed the spirit as a frail thing, contstantly under attack and in need of stength, always threatening to die inside you. Inman found this notion dismal indeed, since he had been taught by sermon and hymn to hold as truth that the soul of man never dies.
Charles Frazier (Cold Mountain)
When she tipped her head and looked upward at the glowing dark blue dome pricked with its millions of lights, bigger and brighter than stars had ever been, she felt the mountains breathe in her face their ancient, frightening cold.
Wallace Stegner (Angle of Repose)
This thing was power from the Outside, and I was a grain of sand to its oncoming tide. But you know what? That grain of sand might be the last remnant of what had once been a mountain, but that which it is, it is. The tide comes and the tide goes. Let it hammer the grain of sand as it may. Let lofty mountains fear the slow, constant assault of the waters. Let the valleys shudder at the pitiless advance of ice. Let continents drown beneath the dark and rising tide. But that grain of sand? It isn’t impressed. Let the tide roll in. The sand will still be there when it rolls out again. -Harry Dresden, Cold Days by Jim Butcher
Jim Butcher (Cold Days (The Dresden Files, #14))
His eyes sliced to me and he clipped, “Stop that shit.” “What shit?” I asked “The cold, remote Faye. It’s shit,” he answered. “You’re right. It is. It’s a façade to hide the fact my heart is breaking. But, whatever. That isn’t your problem anymore. Now, can I point out, you told me you need space but you’re still fraking here?
Kristen Ashley (Breathe (Colorado Mountain, #4))
Damn me not I make a better fool. And there is nothing vaster, more beautiful, remote, unthinking (eternal rose-red sunrise on the surf—great rectitude of rocks) than man, inhuman man, At whom I look for a thousand light years from a seat near Scorpio, amazed and touched by his concern and pity for my plight, a simple star, Then trading shapes again. My wife is gone, my girl is gone, my books are loaned, my clothes are worn, I gave away a car; and all that happened years ago. Mind & matter, love & space are frail as foam on beer.
Gary Snyder (Riprap and Cold Mountain Poems)
In the midst of a thousand clouds and countless waters there is an idle person. By day, he roams the green mountains, at night, he returns to sleep beneath the cliff. Quickly, the seasons pass in serenity, with no worldly bonds. How joyful! What does he depend upon? Quiet, like a large autumn river.
Peter Levitt (The Complete Cold Mountain: Poems of the Legendary Hermit Hanshan)
Why is geometry often described as ""cold" and ""dry?" One reason lies in its inability to describe the shape of a cloud, a mountain, a coastline, or a tree. Clouds are not spheres, mountains are not cones, coastlines are not circles, and bark is not smooth, nor does lightning travel in a straight line.
Benoît B. Mandelbrot (The Fractal Geometry of Nature)
The window apparently wanted only to take his thoughts back. Which was fine with him, for he had seen the metal face of the age and had been so stunned by it that when he thought into the future, all he could vision was a world from which everything he had counted important had been banished or had willingly fled.
Charles Frazier (Cold Mountain)
Lara [Raith] was gorgeous, brilliant, and sexier than a Swedish bikini team hiking up a mountain of money.
Jim Butcher (Cold Days (The Dresden Files, #14))
What use, Milton, a silly story Of our lost general parents, eaters of fruit?
Gary Snyder (Riprap and Cold Mountain Poems)
White clouds gather and billow. Thin grass does for a mattress, The blue sky makes a good quilt. Happy with a stone underhead Let heaven and earth go about their changes.
Gary Snyder (Riprap and Cold Mountain Poems)
He could smell Jack - the intensely familiar odor of cigarettes, musky sweat, and a faint sweetness like grass, and with it the rushing cold of the mountain.
Annie Proulx (Brokeback Mountain)
I thought I heard an axe chop in the woods It broke the dream; and woke up dreaming on a train. It must have been a thousand years ago In some old mountain sawmill of Japan. A horde of excess poets and unwed girls And I that night prowled Tokyo like a bear Tracking the human future Of intelligence and despair.
Gary Snyder (Riprap and Cold Mountain Poems)
Thank God she wasn't wearing shorts. She hadn't shaved her legs in a week, theorizing that October in the mountains was pretty darn cold and she might need the extra layer of insulation.
Victoria Dahl (Talk Me Down (Tumble Creek, #1))
A red leaf danced from a branch like a dropping flame, down into the calm blue lake. A gust had broken it free. There was a cold bite in the wind. It was now deep autumn in the mountains.
Aspen Matis (Girl in the Woods: A Memoir)
From the tower battlements, Dustfinger looked down on a lake as black as night, where the reflection of the castle swam in a sea of stars. The wind passing over his unscarred face was cold from the snow of the surrounding mountains, and Dustfinger relished life as if he were tasting it for the first time. The longing it brought, and the desire. All the bitterness, all the sweetness, even if it was only for a while, never for more than a while, everything gained and lost, lost and found again.
Cornelia Funke
... a man's spirit could be torn apart and cease and yet his body keep on living...His spirit blasted away so that he had become lonesome and estranged from all around him...It seemed a poor swap to find that the only way one might keep from fearing death was to act numb and set apart as if dead already.
Charles Frazier (Cold Mountain)
In the mountains it's cold. Always been cold, not just this year. Jagged scarps forever snowed in Woods in the dark ravines spitting mist. Grass is still sprouting at the end of June, Leaves begin to fall in early August. And here I am, high on mountains, Peering and peering, but I can't even see the sky.
Gary Snyder (Riprap and Cold Mountain Poems)
It was winter, and a night of bitter cold. The snow lay thick upon the ground, and upon the branches of the trees: the frost kept snapping the little twigs on either side of them, as they passed: and when they came to the Mountain-Torrent she was hanging motionless in air, for the Ice-King had kissed her.
Oscar Wilde (The Star-Child and Other Tales)
I drag the body out into the snowdrifts, as far away from our shack as I can muster. I put her in a thicket of trees, where the green seems to still have a voice in the branches, and try not to think about the beasts that’ll soon be gathering. There’s no way of burying her; the ground is a solid rock of ice beneath us. I kneel beside her and want desperately to weep. My throat tightens and my head aches. Everything hurts inside. But I have no way of releasing it. I’m locked up and hard as stone. “I’m sorry, Mamma,” I whisper to the shell in front of me. I take her hand. It could belong to a glass doll. There’s no life there anymore. So I gather rocks, one by one, and set them over her, trying my best to protect her from the birds, the beasts, keep her safe as much as I can now. I pile the dark stones gently on her stomach, her arms, and over her face, until she becomes one with the mountain. I stand and study my work, feeling like the rocks are on me instead, then I leave the body for the forest and ice.
Rachel A. Marks (Winter Rose)
Rivers course through my dreams, rivers cold and fast, rivers well-known and rivers nameless, rivers that seem like ribbons of blue water twisting through wide valleys, narrow rivers folded in layers of darkening shadow, rivers that have eroded down deep in a mountain's belly, sculpted the land, peeled back the planet's history exposing he texture of time itself.
Harry Middleton (Rivers of Memory)
Mr. Crepsley was every bit as composed as he'd sworn he would be. He didn't even shed a tear when the funeral litter was set alight. It was only later, when he was alone in his cell, that he wept loudly, and his cries echoed through the corridors and the tunnels of Vampire Mountain, far in the cold, lonely dawn.
Darren Shan (The Vampire Prince (Cirque Du Freak, #6))
If nobody teaches us the words, the thoughts, we stay ignorant. If nobody shows a little child, two, three years old, how to look for the way, the signs of the path, the landmarks, then it gets lost in the mountain, doesn't it? And dies in the night, in the cold.
Ursula K. Le Guin (The Telling (Hainish Cycle, #8))
The world was young, the mountains green, No stain yet on the Moon was seen, No words were laid on stream or stone When Durin woke and walked alone. He named the nameless hills and dells; He drank from yet untasted wells; He stooped and looked in Mirrormere, And saw a crown of stars appear, As gems upon a silver thread, Above the shadow of his head. The world was fair, the mountains tall, In Elder Days before the fall Of mighty kings in Nargothrond And Gondolin, who now beyond The Western Seas have passed away: The world was fair in Durin's Day. A king he was on carven throne In many-pillared halls of stone With golden roof and silver floor, And runes of power upon the door. The light of sun and star and moon In shining lamps of crystal hewn Undimmed by cloud or shade of night There shone for ever fair and bright. There hammer on the anvil smote, There chisel clove, and graver wrote; There forged was blade, and bound was hilt; The delver mined, the mason built. There beryl, pearl, and opal pale, And metal wrought like fishes' mail, Buckler and corslet, axe and sword, And shining spears were laid in hoard. Unwearied then were Durin's folk; Beneath the mountains music woke: The harpers harped, the minstrels sang, And at the gates the trumpets rang. The world is grey, the mountains old, The forge's fire is ashen-cold; No harp is wrung, no hammer falls: The darkness dwells in Durin's halls; The shadow lies upon his tomb In Moria, in Khazad-dûm. But still the sunken stars appear In dark and windless Mirrormere; There lies his crown in water deep, Till Durin wakes again from sleep. -The Song of Durin
J.R.R. Tolkien
Come live with me and be my love, And we will all the pleasures prove That valleys, groves, hills, and fields, Woods or steepy mountain yields. And we will sit upon the rocks, Seeing the shepherds feed their flocks, By shallow rivers to whose falls Melodious birds sing madrigals. And I will make thee beds of roses And a thousand fragrant posies, A cap of flowers, and a kirtle Embroidered all with leaves of myrtle; A gown made of the finest wool Which from our pretty lambs we pull; Fair lined slippers for the cold, With buckles of th purest gold; A belt of straw and ivy buds, With coral clasps and amber studs: And if these pleasures may thee move, Come live with me and be my love. The shepherds' swains shall dance and sing For thy delight each May morning: If these delights thy mind may move, Then live with me and be my love.
Christopher Marlowe
At the lip of a cliff, I look out over Lake Superior, through the bare branches of birches and the snow-covered branches of aspens and pines. A hard wind blows snow up out of a cavern and over my face. I know this place, I know its seasons - I have hiked these mountains in the summer and walked these winding pathways in the explosion of colour that is a northern fall. And now, the temperature drops well below zero and the deadly cold lake rages below, I feel the stirrings of faith that here, in this place, in my heart, spring will come again. But first the winter must be waited out. And that waiting has worth.
Marya Hornbacher (Waiting: A Nonbeliever's Higher Power)
With the snow piling up outside, the warm dry cabin hidden in its fold of the mountain felt like a safe haven indeed, though it had not been such for the people who had lived there. Soldiers had found them and made the cabin trailhead to a path of exile, loss, and death. But for a while that night, it was a place that held within its walls no pain nor even a vague memory collection of pain.
Charles Frazier (Cold Mountain)
She had a bottle of water in her pack—a big one with a squeeze-top—but suddenly all Trisha wanted in the world was to prime the pump in the little hut and get a drink, cold and fresh, from its rusty lip. She would drink and pretend she was Bilbo Baggins, on his way to the Misty Mountains.
Stephen King (The Girl Who Loved Tom Gordon)
I couldn’t describe the smells of West Virginia, even if I tried. It has something to do with the leaves composting in the woods, the cold trickle of little creeks and waterfalls, the ferns greening up everything. But somewhere deep below, I can smell the rock and the coal this state is built on.
Heather Day Gilbert (Miranda Warning (A Murder in the Mountains, #1))
I lean back, try to forget these fields and flanking hills. A long time before me or these tools, the Teays flowed here. I can almost feel the cold waters and the tickling the trilobites make when they crawl. All the water from the old mountains flowed west. But the land lifted. I have only the bottoms and stone animals I collect. I blink and breathe. My father is a khaki cloud in the canebrakes, and Ginny is no more to me than the bitter smell in the blackberry briers up on the ridge. --from Trilobites
Breece D'J Pancake (The Stories of Breece D'J Pancake)
Musicians add to songs and they evolve: For as was true of human effort, there was never advancement. Everything added meant something lost, and about as often as not the thing lost was preferable to the thing gained, so that over time we'd be lucky if we just broke even. Any thought otherwise was empty pride. p. 380
Charles Frazier (Cold Mountain)
Some enterprising rabbit had dug its way under the stakes of my garden again. One voracious rabbit could eat a cabbage down to the roots, and from the looks of things, he'd brought friends. I sighed and squatted to repair the damage, packing rocks and earth back into the hole. The loss of Ian was a constant ache; at such moments as this, I missed his horrible dog as well. I had brought a large collection of cuttings and seeds from River Run, most of which had survived the journey. It was mid-June, still time--barely--to put in a fresh crop of carrots. The small patch of potato vines was all right, so were the peanut bushes; rabbits wouldn't touch those, and didn't care for the aromatic herbs either, except the fennel, which they gobbled like licorice. I wanted cabbages, though, to preserve a sauerkraut; come winter, we would want food with some taste to it, as well as some vitamin C. I had enough seed left, and could raise a couple of decent crops before the weather turned cold, if I could keep the bloody rabbits off. I drummed my fingers on the handle of my basket, thinking. The Indians scattered clippings of their hair around the edges of the fields, but that was more protection against deer than rabbits. Jamie was the best repellent, I decided. Nayawenne had told me that the scent of carnivore urine would keep rabbits away--and a man who ate meat was nearly as good as a mountain lion, to say nothing of being more biddable. Yes, that would do; he'd shot a deer only two days ago; it was still hanging. I should brew a fresh bucket of spruce beer to go with the roast venison, though . . . (Page 844)
Diana Gabaldon (Drums of Autumn (Outlander, #4))
I will run every mile, i will save every line, i will say i reached the top and i will fall back down standing. I will write down every thing, the good and the bad,I will wake up one day and go back to the start. I will notice that the good ones were nothing but my beautiful lines, were everything painted by my mind. I will notice that the bad ones were nothing but pieces of my pain that should have been crumbled and thrown away the first time i started to rain. I will leave home and i won't mind, i will miss some beating pieces but i will survive.the sky will stay in place, mountains won't shake and my mind will go nowhere.the stars will  take my side not yours, and the new air in your chest will feel forever cold. I will donate a piece of my heart to hurt you forever and a lifelong lasting question about what you have lost.My hands won't ever fit in yours and my faith says that crown on your head will hurt you the most. One day i won't overlook anything anymore. One day i won't remember anything anymore.I will stop pretending i'm ice cold and i will learn how to be strong.one day I will grow out of this, i will grow out of us.
Mennah al Refaey
Shine on me, sunshine Rain on me, rain Fall softly, dewdrops And cool my brow again. Storm, blow me from here With your fiercest wind Let me float across the sky ’Til I can rest again. Fall gently, snowflakes Cover me with white Cold icy kisses and Let me rest tonight. Sun, rain, curving sky Mountain, oceans, leaf and stone Star shine, moon glow You’re all that I can call my own.
Maya Angelou (And Still I Rise)
That was on a night in August. Dad Lewis died early that morning and the young girl Alice from next door got lost in the evening and then found her way home in the dark by the streetlights of town and so returned to the people who loved her. And in the fall the days turned cold and the leaves dropped off the trees and in the winter the wind blew from the mountains and out on the high plains of Holt County there were overnight storms and three-day blizzards.
Kent Haruf (Benediction (Plainsong, #3))
En la película, la pobre Keira Knightley tiene que pasar por toda esa maldita tragedia con James McAvoy, pero si Keira no hubiera sido atractiva, el nunca se habría fijado en ella y no le habría roto el corazón. Al fin y al cabo todos sabemos eso de que “es mejor haber amado y perdido...”, todo ese rollo es una mierda. Esta teoría se aplica a un montón de películas. Piensa en ello. Si Kate winslet hubiese sido la “Duff”, Leonardo DiCaprio no se habría enamorado de ella en Titanic y nosotros nos habríamos ahorrado un montón de lágrimas. Si Nicole Kidman hubiese sido fea en Cold Mountain, no tendría que haberse preocupado por Jude Law cuando se fue a la guerra. La lista es interminable.
Kody Keplinger (The DUFF: Designated Ugly Fat Friend (Hamilton High, #1))
This is life. Learning to love through loss. Seeking warm pockets in the bitter cold. Finding the worth of a smile on a cloudy day. Carrying the weight of the world on weary shoulders—mistakes, sins, injustices—added upon daily. Enduring burdens that spur greater strength. This is life. Sorting through layers of expressions staring you straight in the eye. A battle to be right when wrong, to be good when bad, to be content when in need, and to laugh when tearing up. This is life. Valuing things of no worth. Reevaluating dreams. Laboring ceaselessly against the current. Seeing less, wanting more, having enough. This is life. Chasing the moon when the sun would extend its warmth. Slapping the hand that would offer a gentle caress. Cowering at personal, monstrous shadows. Giving and taking in unbalanced weights. Diminishing the majesty of mountains in order to form our own lowly hills. Hoping for more than we deserve. This is life. Hurting. Despairing. Losing. Weeping. Suffering. Laboring. Sinking. Mourning. Appreciating with greater capacity and sincerity a learned knowledge that these adversities do have their opposites. This is life. A taste. A revelation. A banishment. A mercy. A test. An experience. A turbulent sea-voyage that shall assuredly reach the unseen shore, making seasoned sailors of us all. This is life.
Richelle E. Goodrich (Smile Anyway: Quotes, Verse, and Grumblings for Every Day of the Year)
We didn't talk about problems, or parents, or automobiles, or ambitions. We talked about life....And the sea was there, forty feet away and getting closer, and the sky over the sea, and the sun going down the sky. And it was cold, and it was the high point of my life. I'd had high points before. Once at night walking in the park in the rain in autumn. Once out in the desert, under the stars, when I turned into the earth turning on its axis. Sometimes thinking, just thinking things through. But always alone. By myself. This time I was not alone. I was on the high mountain with a friend. There is nothing, there is nothing that beats that. If it never happens again in my life, still I can say I was there once.
Ursula K. Le Guin (Very Far Away from Anywhere Else)
Tristan?” He turned his face to me, and it was streaked with tears. I wanted to wipe them away, tell him that everything would be all right, but my body was locked stiff with pain. “Promise me you’ll get better,” he whispered. “Tell me you’ll grow strong again. That you’ll gallop on horseback through summer meadows. Dance in spring rains and let snowflakes melt on your tongue in winter. That you’ll travel wherever the wind takes you. That you’ll live.” He stroked my hair. “Promise me.” Confusion crept over me. “You’ll be with me, though. You’ll do those things too?” He kissed my lips, silencing my questions. “Promise me.” “No,” I said, struggling against him.. “No, you said you were coming with me. You said. You promised.” He had to be coming with me - he said he was and Tristan couldn’t lie. Wouldn’t lie. He got to his feet and stepped into the water. I tried to struggle, but he was too strong. “Tristian, no, no, no!” I tried to scream, but I couldn’t. I tried to hold on to him, but my fingers wouldn’t work. The cold of the water bit into my skin and I sobbed, terrified. “You said you would never leave me!” He stopped, the weight of his sorrow greater than any mountain. “And if I had the choice, I never would. I love you, Cécile. I will love you until the day I take my last breath and that is the truth. “ He kissed me hard. “Forgive me.
Danielle L. Jensen (Stolen Songbird (The Malediction Trilogy, #1))
In the morning After taking cold shower —-what a mistake—- I look at the mirror. There, a funny guy, Grey hair, white beard, wrinkled skin, —-what a pity—- Poor, dirty, old man, He is not me, absolutely not. Land and life Fishing in the ocean Sleeping in the desert with stars Building a shelter in the mountains Farming the ancient way Singing with coyotes Singing against nuclear war— I’ll never be tired of life. Now I’m seventeen years old, Very charming young man. I sit quietly in lotus position, Meditating, meditating for nothing. Suddenly a voice comes to me: “To stay young, To save the world, Break the mirror.
Nanao Sakaki (Break the Mirror)
On thing he discovered with a great deal of astonishment was that music held more for him than just pleasure. There was meat to it. The grouping of sounds, their forms in the air as they rang out and faded, said something comforting to him about the rule of creation. What the music said was that there is a right way for things to be ordered so that life might not always be just tangle and drift but have a shape, an aim. It was a powerful argument against the notion that things just happen.
Charles Frazier (Cold Mountain)
In the glittering light I got drunk and reeled through the rooms, And cried, “Cartagena! swamp of unholy loves!” And wept for the Indian whores who were younger than me, and I was eighteen, And splashed after the crew down the streets wearing sandals bought at a stall And got back to the ship, dawn came, we were far out at sea.
Gary Snyder (Riprap and Cold Mountain Poems)
I drank a little California Mountain Red at home and thought--why not--wherever you turn someone is shouting give me liberty of I give you death. Perfectly sensible, thing-owning, Church-fearing neighbours flop their hands over their ears at the sound of a siren to keep fallout from taking hold of their internal organs. You have to be cockeyed to love, and blind in order to look out the window at your own ice-cold street.
Grace Paley (Enormous Changes at the Last Minute: Stories)
Suppose we were planning to impose a dictatorial regime upon the American people—the following preparations would be essential: 1. Concentrate the populace in megalopolitan masses so that they can be kept under close surveillance and where, in case of trouble, they can be bombed, burned, gassed or machine-gunned with a minimum of expense and waste. 2. Mechanize agriculture to the highest degree of refinement, thus forcing most of the scattered farm and ranching population into the cities. Such a policy is desirable because farmers, woodsmen, cowboys, Indians, fishermen and other relatively self-sufficient types are difficult to manage unless displaced from their natural environment. 3. Restrict the possession of firearms to the police and the regular military organizations. 4. Encourage or at least fail to discourage population growth. Large masses of people are more easily manipulated and dominated than scattered individuals. 5. Continue military conscription. Nothing excels military training for creating in young men an attitude of prompt, cheerful obedience to officially constituted authority. 6. Divert attention from deep conflicts within the society by engaging in foreign wars; make support of these wars a test of loyalty, thereby exposing and isolating potential opposition to the new order. 7. Overlay the nation with a finely reticulated network of communications, airlines and interstate autobahns. 8. Raze the wilderness. Dam the rivers, flood the canyons, drain the swamps, log the forests, strip-mine the hills, bulldoze the mountains, irrigate the deserts and improve the national parks into national parking lots. Idle speculations, feeble and hopeless protest. It was all foreseen nearly half a century ago by the most cold-eyed and clear-eyed of our national poets, on California’s shore, at the end of the open road. Shine, perishing republic.
Edward Abbey (Desert Solitaire)
Egypt is a fertile valley of rich river soil, low-lying, warm, monotonous, a slow-flowing river, and beyond the limitless desert. Greece is a country of sparse fertility and keen, cold winters, all hills and mountains sharp cut in stone, where strong men must work hard to get their bread. And while Egypt submitted and suffered and turned her face toward death, Greece resisted and rejoiced and turned full-face to life. For somewhere among those steep stone mountains, in little sheltered valleys where the great hills were ramparts to defend, and men could have security for peace and happy living, something quite new came into the world: the joy of life found expression. Perhaps it was born there, among the shepherds pasturing their flocks where the wild flowers made a glory on the hillside; among the sailors on a sapphire sea washing enchanted islands purple in a luminous air.
Edith Hamilton (The Greek Way)
The verdure of mountains enhancing the beauty of the earth is recounting us to live not only for ourselves but for others too, accepting the dichotomies (dualities) of life like heat, cold rain etc. How true this is in actuality that the greenery of land is owing to the grass, still no one recalls the grass. Likewise, greenery of this life (happiness) always inspire you to enliven not only your own but others’ lives too."- Acharya Balkrishna
Acharya Balkrishna
Who am I? What am I doing here? I fall between the cold walls of human malevolence, a white figure fluttering, sinking down through the cold lake, a mountain of skulls above me. I settle down to the cold latitudes, the chalk steps washed with indigo. The earth in its dark corridors knows my step, feels a foot abroad, a wing stirring, a gasp and a shudder.
Henry Miller (Tropic of Cancer (Tropic, #1))
Are those snow forts?” A nod. Something white shot across the field, white and hard and glistening, and then— Cassian’s yowl echoed off the mountains around us. Followed by, “You bastard!” Rhys’s answering laugh was bright as the sun on snow. I surveyed the three walls of snow—the barricades—that bordered the field as Mor erected an invisible shield against the bitter wind. It did little to drive away the cold, though. “They’re having a snowball fight.
Sarah J. Maas (A Court of Frost and Starlight (A Court of Thorns and Roses, #3.1))
The storm is a glazier. Then fog passes through, touches the cold trees to add to the ice already there. Here the wind spins glass from the water it has stolen off the sea and the lakes, off the hair on my head and the breath out of my mouth, the storm takes the water from us all everywhere, to make of a mountain range a stained-glass depiction of a saint no one knows.
Alexander Chee (Edinburgh)
One thing he discovered with a great deal of astonishment was that music held more for him than just pleasure. There was meat to it. The grouping of sounds, their forms in the air as they rang out and faded, said something comforting to him about the rule of creation. What the music said was that there is a right way for things to be ordered so that life might not always be just tangle and drift, but have a shape, an aim. It was a powerful argument against the notion that things just happen.
Charles Frazier (Cold Mountain)
Thou still unravish’d bride of quietness, Thou foster-child of silence and slow time, Sylvan historian, who canst thus express A flowery tale more sweetly than our rhyme: What leaf-fring’d legend haunts about thy shape Of deities or mortals, or of both, In Tempe or the dales of Arcady? What men or gods are these? What maidens loth? What mad pursuit? What struggle to escape? What pipes and timbrels? What wild ecstasy? Heard melodies are sweet, but those unheard Are sweeter; therefore, ye soft pipes, play on; Not to the sensual ear, but, more endear’d, Pipe to the spirit ditties of no tone: Fair youth, beneath the trees, thou canst not leave Thy song, nor ever can those trees be bare; Bold Lover, never, never canst thou kiss, Though winning near the goal yet, do not grieve; She cannot fade, though thou hast not thy bliss, For ever wilt thou love, and she be fair! Ah, happy, happy boughs! that cannot shed Your leaves, nor ever bid the Spring adieu; And, happy melodist, unwearied, For ever piping songs for ever new; More happy love! more happy, happy love! For ever warm and still to be enjoy’d, For ever panting, and for ever young; All breathing human passion far above, That leaves a heart high-sorrowful and cloy’d, A burning forehead, and a parching tongue. Who are these coming to the sacrifice? To what green altar, O mysterious priest, Lead’st thou that heifer lowing at the skies, And all her silken flanks with garlands drest? What little town by river or sea shore, Or mountain-built with peaceful citadel, Is emptied of this folk, this pious morn? And, little town, thy streets for evermore Will silent be; and not a soul to tell Why thou art desolate, can e’er return. O Attic shape! Fair attitude! with brede Of marble men and maidens overwrought, With forest branches and the trodden weed; Thou, silent form, dost tease us out of thought As doth eternity: Cold Pastoral! When old age shall this generation waste, Thou shalt remain, in midst of other woe Than ours, a friend to man, to whom thou say’st, “Beauty is truth, truth beauty,—that is all Ye know on earth, and all ye need to know.
John Keats (Ode On A Grecian Urn And Other Poems)
The whole skin has this delightful sensitivity; it feels the sun, it feels the wind running inside one's garment, it feels water closing on it as one slips under - the catch in the breath, like a wave held back, the glow that releases one's entire cosmos, running to the ends of the body as the spent wave runs out upon the sand. This plunge into the cold water of a mountain pool seems for a brief moment to disintegrate the very self; it is not to be borne: one is lost: stricken: annihilated. Then life pours back.
Nan Shepherd (The Living Mountain)
There is a tree. At the downhill edge of a long, narrow field in the western foothills of the La Sal Mountains -- southeastern Utah. A particular tree. A juniper. Large for its species -- maybe twenty feet tall and two feet in diameter. For perhaps three hundred years this tree has stood its ground. Flourishing in good seasons, and holding on in bad times. "Beautiful" is not a word that comes to mind when one first sees it. No naturalist would photograph it as exemplary of its kind. Twisted by wind, split and charred by lightning, scarred by brushfires, chewed on by insects, and pecked by birds. Human beings have stripped long strings of bark from its trunk, stapled barbed wire to it in using it as a corner post for a fence line, and nailed signs on it on three sides: NO HUNTING; NO TRESPASSING; PLEASE CLOSE THE GATE. In commandeering this tree as a corner stake for claims of rights and property, miners and ranchers have hacked signs and symbols in its bark, and left Day-Glo orange survey tape tied to its branches. Now it serves as one side of a gate between an alfalfa field and open range. No matter what, in drought, flood heat and cold, it has continued. There is rot and death in it near the ground. But at the greening tips of its upper branches and in its berrylike seed cones, there is yet the outreach of life. I respect this old juniper tree. For its age, yes. And for its steadfastness in taking whatever is thrown at it. That it has been useful in a practical way beyond itself counts for much, as well. Most of all, I admire its capacity for self-healing beyond all accidents and assaults. There is a will in it -- toward continuing to be, come what may.
Robert Fulghum (Uh-oh: Some Observations from Both Sides of the Refrigerator Door)
Yes?” Came the thin and reedy voice. I winced as I pushed the door open. Beth sounded terrible. And when I got an eyeful of her, she looked just as bad. Sitting up against the headboard with a mountain of blankets piled around her, she had dark circles under her eyes. Her pale, waiflike features were sharp, and her hair was an unwashed, tangled mess. I tried not to breathe too deeply, because the room smelled of vomit and sweat. I halted at the bed, shocked to my core. “Are you sick?” Her unfocused gaze drifted away from me, landing on the door to the adjoined bathroom, it didn’t make sense. Hybrids—we couldn’t get sick. Not the common cold or the most dangerous cancer. Like the Luxen, we were immune to everything out there in terms of disease, but Beth? Yeah, she wasn’t looking too good. A great sense of unease blossomed in my belly, stiffening my muscles. “Beth?” Her watery stare finally drifted to me. “Is Dawson back yet?” My heart turned over heavily, almost painfully. The two of them have been through so much, more than Daemon and I had, and this . . . God, this wasn’t fair. “No, he’s not back yet, but you? You look sick.” She raised a slim, pale hand to her throat. “I'm not feeling very well.” I didn’t know how bad this was, and I was almost afraid to find out. “What’s wrong?” One shoulder rose, and it looked like it had taken great effort. “You shouldn’t be worried,” she said, her voice low as she picked at the hem of a blanket. “It’s not a big deal. I’ll be okay once Dawson comes back.” Her gaze floated off again, and as she dropped the edge of the blanket, she reached down, put her hand over her blanket-covered belly, and said, “We’ll be okay once Dawson comes back.” “We’ll be . . . ?” I trailed off as my eyes widened. My jaw came unhinged and dropped as I gaped at her. I stared at where her hand was and watched in dawned horror as she rubbed her belly in slow, steady circles. Oh no. oh, hell to the no to the tenth power. I started forward and then stopped. “Beth, are you . . . are you pregnant?
Jennifer L. Armentrout (Opposition (Lux, #5))
Moominmamma had got up very early to pack their rucksacks, and was bustling to and fro with wooly stockings and packets of sandwiches, while down by the bridge Moominpappa was getting their raft in order. "Mamma, dar," said Moomintroll, "we can't possibly take all that with us. Everyone will laugh." "It's cold in the Lonely Mountains," said Moominmamma, stuffing in an umbrella and a frying pan. "Have you got a compass?" "Yes," answered Moomintroll, "but couldn't you at least leave out the plates -- we can easily eat off rhubarb leaves.
Tove Jansson (Comet in Moominland (The Moomins, #2))
It is impossible to live without hardship. The hardship of daily trifles, Ashely explains, ever accumulating and impossible to ignore, is so much meaner than pain or cold or fatigue. These annoyances make one weak and petty and shallow, just as greater struggles make one brave and wise. It's the little things that bring one down. Delayed trains and burnt puddings and drafty rooms. I was never so miserably cold on a mountain as I was in a drafty room. One can rise to dire occasions, but most of the time one worries about one's burnt pudding. It takes real struggle to see what life is. Then you realize you don't give two straws if your pudding's been burnt.
Justin Go (The Steady Running of the Hour)
To what a world does the illustrious bard carry me! To wander over pathless wilds, surrounded by impetuous whirlwinds, where, by the feeble light of the moon, we see the spirits of our ancestors; to hear from the mountain-tops, mid the roar of torrents, their plaintive sounds issuing from deep caverns, and the sorrowful lamentations of a maiden who sighs and expires on the mossy tomb of the warrior by whom she was adored. I meet this bard with silver hair; he wanders in the valley; he seeks the footsteps of his fathers, and, alas! he finds only their tombs. Then, contemplating the pale moon, as she sinks beneath the waves of the rolling sea, the memory of bygone days strikes the mind of the hero, days when approaching danger invigorated the brave, and the moon shone upon his bark laden with spoils, and returning in triumph. When I read in his countenance deep sorrow, when I see his dying glory sink exhausted into the grave, as he inhales new and heart-thrilling delight from his approaching union with his beloved, and he casts a look on the cold earth and the tall grass which is so soon to cover him, and then exclaims, "The traveller will come, -- he will come who has seen my beauty, and he will ask, 'Where is the bard, where is the illustrious son of Fingal?' He will walk over my tomb, and will seek me in vain!
Johann Wolfgang von Goethe (The Sorrows of Young Werther)
Season late, day late, sun just down, and the sky Cold gunmetal but with a wash of live rose, and she, From water the color of sky except where Her motion has fractured it to shivering splinters of silver, Rises. Stands on the raw grass. Against The new-curdling night of spruces, nakedness Glimmers and, at bosom and flank, drips With fluent silver. The man, Some ten strokes out, but now hanging Motionless in the gunmetal water, feet Cold with the coldness of depth, all History dissolving from him, is Nothing but an eye. Is an eye only. Sees The body that is marked by his use, and Time's, Rise, and in the abrupt and unsustaining element of air, Sway, lean, grapple the pond-bank. Sees How, with that posture of female awkwardness that is, And is the stab of, suddenly perceived grace, breasts bulge down in The pure curve of their weight and buttocks Moon up and, in swelling unity, Are silver and glimmer. Then The body is erect, she is herself, whatever Self she may be, and with an end of the towel grasped in each hand, Slowly draws it back and forth across back and buttocks, but With face lifted toward the high sky, where The over-wash of rose color now fails. Fails, though no star Yet throbs there. The towel, forgotten, Does not move now. The gaze Remains fixed on the sky. The body, Profiled against the darkness of spruces, seems To draw to itself, and condense in its whiteness, what light In the sky yet lingers or, from The metallic and abstract severity of water, lifts. The body, With the towel now trailing loose from one hand, is A white stalk from which the face flowers gravely toward the high sky. This moment is non-sequential and absolute, and admits Of no definition, for it Subsumes all other, and sequential, moments, by which Definition might be possible. The woman, Face yet raised, wraps, With a motion as though standing in sleep, The towel about her body, under her breasts, and, Holding it there hieratic as lost Egypt and erect, Moves up the path that, stair-steep, winds Into the clamber and tangle of growth. Beyond The lattice of dusk-dripping leaves, whiteness Dimly glimmers, goes. Glimmers and is gone, and the man, Suspended in his darkling medium, stares Upward where, though not visible, he knows She moves, and in his heart he cries out that, if only He had such strength, he would put his hand forth And maintain it over her to guard, in all Her out-goings and in-comings, from whatever Inclemency of sky or slur of the world's weather Might ever be. In his heart he cries out. Above Height of the spruce-night and heave of the far mountain, he sees The first star pulse into being. It gleams there. I do not know what promise it makes him.
Robert Penn Warren
She had been struck by the figure of a woman's back in a mirror. She stopped and looked. The dress the figure wore was the color called ashes of roses, and Ada stood, held in place by a sharp stitch of envy or th woman's dress and the fine shape of her back and her thick dark hair and the sense of assurance she seemed to evidence in her very posture. Then Ada took a step forward, and the other woman did too, and Ada realized that it was herself she was admiring, the mirror having caught the reflection of an opposite mirror on the wall behind her. The light of the lamps and the tint of the mirrors had conspired to shift colors, bleaching mauve to rose. She climbed the steps to her room and prepared for bed, but she slept poorly that night, for the music went on until dawn. As she lay awake she thought how odd it had felt to win her own endorsement.
Charles Frazier (Cold Mountain)
In the lives of emperors there is a moment which follows pride in the boundless extension of the territories we have conquered, and the melancholy and relief of knowing we shall soon give up any thought of knowing and understanding them. There is a sense of emptiness that comes over us at evening, with the odor of the elephants after the rain and the sandalwood ashes growing cold in the braziers, a dizziness that makes rivers and mountains tremble on the fallow curves of the planispheres where they are portrayed, and rolls up, one after the other, the despatches announcing to us the collapse of the last enemy troops, from defeat to defeat, and flakes the wax of seals of obscure kings who beseech our armies’ protection, offering in exchange annual tributes of precious metals, tanned hides, and tortoise shell. It is the desperate moment when we discover that this empire, which had seemed to us the sum of all wonders, is an endless, formless ruin, that corruption’s gangrene has spread too far to be healed by our scepter, that the triumph over enemy sovereigns has made us the heirs of their long undoing.
Italo Calvino (Invisible Cities)
The last day i was home i took the rental car up old 14 behind the Sandia Mountains. as i drove north toward Santa Fe past Madrid I rolled the window down halfway and let the cold, brisk, February air come into the car. I smelled the pinon trees and the damp earth. The Gray came over me. My life flashed through my heart in one deep rush of feeling. When I made the turn around the mountain to the west, the mesas and valleys spread out before me under the orange and gold horizon. The sun hit me like a wave that flooded out the past and dissolved any idea of the future, and I felt okay and whole for about twenty minutes.
Marc Maron (The Jerusalem Syndrome: My Life as a Reluctant Messiah)
People say the beach is the great equaliser Who are they kidding? Sit at Bondi and watch the boys flex And the girls walk bolt upright It looks like a nightmare episode of Baywatch. The true equaliser is the mountain cold And stacks of cold flung together Maybe then we’d listen to what each other is saying Instead of checking out the best bods. And as I wrap another layer Around my Size 10 I think of Jack’s favourite saying: “today’s tan is tomorrow’s cancer” I walk outside And whistle at the wind.
Steven Herrick (Kissing Annabel: Love, Ghosts, and Facial Hair; A Place Like This)
olemnly he came forward and mounted the round gunrest. He faced about and blessed gravely thrice the tower, the surrounding land and the awaking mountains. Then, catching sight of Stephen Dedalus, he bent towards him and made rapid crosses in the air, gurgling in his throat and shaking his head. Stephen Dedalus, displeased and sleepy, leaned his arms on the top of the staircase and looked coldly at the shaking gurgling face that blessed him, equine in its length, and at the light untonsured hair, grained and hued like pale oak.
James Joyce (Ulysses)
I lost my voice and my best friend too On swift, fierce winds and wings of blue, The cold rain fell where beams had shone, So I wrapped up tight and safe. Alone. But I missed my friend, I missed my voice, And my heart still whispered of another choice To break out of my binding, safe, and warm, And see what the world looked like after the storm. So I struggled free and was greeted by Colorful brushstrokes across the sky, The melody of the summer breeze And blue wings like mine in hazel trees. On the soft, sweet air of the mountain glade, We gathered together in cool, green shade, And told our stories, beginnings to ends, And found our song in the hearts of new friends.
Elaine Vickers (Like Magic)
The crags of the mountain were ruthless in the moon; cold, deadly and shining. Distance had no meaning. The tangled glittering of the forest roof rolled away, but its furthermost reaches were brought suddenly nearer in a bound by the terrifying effect of proximity in the mountain that they swarmed. The mountain was neither far away nor was it close at hand. It arose starkly, enormously, across the lens of the eye. The hollow itself was a cup of light. Every blade of the grass was of consequence, and the few scattered stones held an authority that made their solid, separate marks upon the brain - each one with its own unduplicated shape: each rising brightly from the ink of its own spilling.
Mervyn Peake (Titus Groan (Gormenghast, #1))
When the storm is over, the new growth, tiny and light, timid-green, starts edging our on the buses and three limbs. Then Nature brings April rain. It whispers down soft and lonesome, making mists in the hollows and on the trails where you walk under the drippings from hanging branches of trees. It's a good feeling, exciting--but sad too--in April rain. Granpa said he always got that kind of mixed-up feeling. He said it was exciting because something new was being born and it was sad, because you knowed you can't hold onto it. It will pass too quick. April wind is soft and warm as a baby's crib. It breathes on the crab apple tree until white blossoms open out, smeared with pink. The smell is sweeter than honeysuckle and brings bees swarming over the blossoms. Mountain laurel with pink-white blooms and purple centers grow everywhere, from the hollows to the top of the mountain, alongside of the dogtooth violet... Then, when April gets its warmest, all of a sudden the cold hits you. It stays cold for four or five days. This is to make the blackberries bloom and is called "blackberry winter." The blackberries will not bloom without it. That's why some years there are no blackberries. When it ends, that's when the dogwoods bloom out like snowballs over the mountainside in places you never suspicioned they grew: in a pine grove or stand of oak of a sudden there's a big burst of white.
Forrest Carter (The Education of Little Tree)
All day, the colours had been those of dusk, mist moving like a water creature across the great flanks of mountains possessed of ocean shadows and depths. Briefly visible above the vapour, Kanchenjunga was a far peak whittled out of ice, gathering the last of the night, a plume of snow blown high by the storms at its summit. Sai, sitting on the veranda, was reading an article about giant squid in an old National Geographic. Every now and then she looked up at Kanchenjunga, observed its wizard phosphorescence with a shiver. The judge sat at the far corner with his chessboard, playing against himself. Stuffed under his chair where she felt safe was Mutt the dog, snoring gently in her sleep. A single bald lightbulb dangled on a wire above. It was cold, but inside the house, it was still colder, the dark, the freeze, contained by stone walls several feet deep.
Kiran Desai (The Inheritance of Loss)
He's not my lover," Isolfr said. She raised an eyebrow, a long feathery, shaggy sweep. "You're his beloved. Both of them. I saw enough on the war-trail to know." Then she laughed, and took her hand off his and pushed his chest like a wolf-cub nudging playfully. "We don't get to pick who loves us, you know. And better to get him to write the song than be remembered forever as 'fair Isolfr, the cold.'" He scrubbed a hand across his face, roughness of beard and scars and the smooth skin of the unmarked cheek. "Is that really what they call me?" She smiled. "You frighten them, Viradechtisbrother. You went down under the mountain and came out again, twice, and the alfar call you friend. They'll have you among the heroes before you know it. And you can seem quite untouchable—'ice-eyes, and ice-heart, and ice-hard, his will.'" "Othinn help me. It is a song already.
Sarah Monette (A Companion to Wolves (Iskryne World, #1))
Hush!’ said the Cabby. They all listened. In the darkness something was happening at last. A voice had begun to sing. It was very far away and Digory found it hard to decide from what direction it was coming. Sometimes it seemed to come from all directions at once. Sometimes he almost thought it was coming out of the earth beneath them. Its lower notes were deep enough to be the voice of the earth herself. There were no words. There was hardly even a tune. But it was, beyond comparison, the most beautiful noise he had ever heard. It was so beautiful he could hardly bear it… ‘Gawd!’ said the Cabby. ‘Ain’t it lovely?’ Then two wonders happened at the same moment. One was that the voice was suddenly joined by other voices; more voices than you could possibly count. They were in harmony with it, but far higher up the scale: cold, tingling, silvery voices. The second wonder was that the blackness overhead, all at once, was blazing with stars. They didn’t come out gently one by one, as they do on a summer evening. One moment there had been nothing but darkness; next moment a thousand, thousand points of light leaped out – single stars, constellations, and planets, brighter and bigger than any in our world. There were no clouds. The new stars and the new voices began at exactly the same time. If you had seen and heard it , as Digory did, you would have felt quite certain that it was the stars themselves who were singing, and that it was the First Voice, the deep one, which had made them appear and made them sing. ‘Glory be!’ said the Cabby. ‘I’d ha’ been a better man all my life if I’d known there were things like this.’ …Far away, and down near the horizon, the sky began to turn grey. A light wind, very fresh, began to stir. The sky, in that one place, grew slowly and steadily paler. You could see shapes of hills standing up dark against it. All the time the Voice went on singing…The eastern sky changed from white to pink and from pink to gold. The Voice rose and rose, till all the air was shaking with it. And just as it swelled to the mightiest and most glorious sound it had yet produced, the sun arose. Digory had never seen such a sun…You could imagine that it laughed for joy as it came up. And as its beams shot across the land the travellers could see for the first time what sort of place they were in. It was a valley through which a broad, swift river wound its way, flowing eastward towards the sun. Southward there were mountains, northward there were lower hills. But it was a valley of mere earth, rock and water; there was not a tree, not a bush, not a blade of grass to be seen. The earth was of many colours: they were fresh, hot and vivid. They made you feel excited; until you saw the Singer himself, and then you forgot everything else. It was a Lion. Huge, shaggy, and bright it stood facing the risen sun. Its mouth was wide open in song and it was about three hundred yards away.
C.S. Lewis (The Magician's Nephew (Chronicles of Narnia, #6))
I think I better leave.” “No.” That one word stopped her dead cold. “Come here.” “Why?” “Because.” As if it was enough of an answer. She shook her head. “It’s only going to confuse things. You don’t want anything serious, and I’m not going to be some late night booty call.” He shot off the bed and was in front of her in seconds. “That offends me.” “Sorry.” She tried to put some space between them, but he just continued to close the gap. “I’m just being honest. Am I wrong?” He grasped her head, threading his fingers through her hair. “I’ll let you know after.” “After what?” “After this.” He kissed her
Elayne DiSano (For Her Honor (Mountain Skulls MC, #2))
Inman guessed Swimmer's spells were right in saying a man's spirit could be torn apart and cease and yet his body keep on living. They could take deathblows independently. He was himself a case in point, and perhaps not a rare one, for his spirit, it seemed, had been about burned out of him to fear that the mere existence of the Henry repeating rifle or the éprouvette mortar made all talk of spirit immediately antique. His spirit, he feared, had been blasted away so that he had become lonesome and estranged from all around him as a sad old heron standing pointless watch in the mudflats of a pond lacking frogs. It seemed a poor swap to find that the only way one might keep from fearing death was to act numb and set apart as if dead already, with nothing left of you but a hut of bones.
Charles Frazier (Cold Mountain)
For those who have walked through the fires of hell and rather than fall to its flames, have emerged battered, but victorious. In the immortal words of Ovid: Quin ninc quoque frigidus artus, dum loquor, horror habet, parsque est meminisse doloris- Even now while I tell it, cold horror envelops me and my pains return the minute I think of it. We can never escape the pain of our pasts, or the flashbacks that assault us when we dare to let our thoughts drift unattended, but we can choose to not let it ruin the future we, alone, can build for ourselves. And for those who are currently trapped in a bad situation. May you find the resolute strength it takes to free yourself, and to finally see the beauty that lives inside you. You are resplendent, and you deserve respect and love. Don't let the minions of hatred or cruelty define you, or steal away your own humanity. When our compassion and ability to love and appreciate others go, then our bullies and oppressors have truly won, for it is not they who are harmed, but rather we who lose our souls and hearts to the same miserable bitterness that causes them to lash out against us. The cycle can be broken- it must be broken, even though the path is never easy or without cost. Yet victory is made sweeter when you know it came from within you, without violent retribution. The best revenge is to leave them mired in their hateful misery while you learn to bask in the warmth of self-esteem and happiness. Never forget that broken wings can and do heal in time, and that those scarred wings can carry the eagle to the top of the highest mountain.
Sherrilyn Kenyon (Born of Silence (The League: Nemesis Rising #6))
Towards four o'clock the dew fell, and she smelled a gust of sweetness from the roses and a paleness showed in the sky to the East. It was cold; the wetness was cold on her hands and she felt her skirt dragging around her ankles... the light spread, there were long lines of cloud in the sky and presently above them the outline of the snow peaks appeared, cold and hard as if they were made of iron; they turned from black to grey to white while the hills were still in darkness. Then the forest came, mysteriously out of the darkness, and the light moved down, turning the trees dark blue and green, and the terrace was full of a swimming light that was colourless and confusing... Then she looked up and saw that the Himalayas were showing in their full range, and were coloured in ash and orange and precious Chinese pink, deeper in the east, paler in the west. The people called it 'the flowering of the snows
Rumer Godden (Black Narcissus)
The Doper's Dream Last night I dreamed I was plugged right in To a bubblin' hookah so high, When all of a sudden some Arab jinni Jump up just a-winkin' his eye. 'I'm here to obey all your wishes,' he told me. As for words I was trying to grope. 'Good buddy,' I cried, 'you could surely oblige me By turning me on to some dope!' With a bigfat smile he took ahold of my hand, And we flew down the sky in a flash, And the first thing I saw in the land where he took me Was a whole solid mountain of hash! All the trees was a-bloomin' with pink 'n' purple pills, Whur the Romilar River flowed by, To the magic mushrooms as wild as a rainbow, So pretty that I wanted to cry. All the girls come to greet us, so sweet in slow motion, Mourning glories woven into their hair, Bringin' great big handfuls of snowy cocaine, All their dope they were eager to share. We we dallied for days, just a-ballin' and smokin', In the flowering Panama Red, Just piggin' on peyote and nutmeg tea, And those brownies so kind to your head. Now I could've passed that good time forever, And I really was fixing to stay, But you know that jinni turned out, t'be a narco man, And he busted me right whur I lay. And he took me back to a cold, cold world 'N' now m'prison's whurever I be... And I dream of the days back in Doperland And I wonder, will I ever go free?
Thomas Pynchon (Gravity's Rainbow)
The staying and doing it, in spite of everything. In spite of the bears and the rattlesnakes and the scat of the mountain lions I never saw; the blisters and scabs and scrapes and lacerations. The exhaustion and the deprivation; the cold and the heat; the monotony and the pain; the thirst and the hunger; the glory and the ghosts that haunted me as I hiked eleven hundred miles from the Mojave Desert to the state of Washington by myself. And finally, once I’d actually gone and done it, walked all those miles for all those days, there was the realization that what I’d thought was the beginning had not really been the beginning at all. That in truth my hike on the Pacific Crest Trail hadn’t begun when I made the snap decision to do it. It had begun before I even imagined it, precisely four years, seven months, and three days before, when I’d stood in a little room at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minnesota, and learned that my mother was going to die.
Cheryl Strayed (Wild: From Lost to Found on the Pacific Crest Trail)
There is a legend that has often been told Of the boy who searched for the Windows of Gold. The beautiful windows he saw far away When he looked in the valley at sunrise each day. And he yearned to go down to the valley below But lived on a mountain covered with snow, And he knew it would be a difficult trek, But that was a journey he wanted to make. So he planned by day and he dreamed by night Of how he could reach The Great Shining Light. And one golden morning when dawn broke through And the valley sparkled with diamond of dew. He started to climb down the mountainside With the Windows of Gold as his goal and his guide. He traveled all day and, weary and worn, With bleeding feet and clothes that were torn. He entered the peaceful valley town Just as the Golden Sun went down. But he seemed to have lost his "Guiding Light," The windows were dark that had once been bright. And hungry and tired and lonely and cold He cried, "Won't You Show Me The Windows of Gold?" And a kind hand touched him and said, "Behold! High On The Mountain Are The Windows of Gold." For the sun going down in a great golden ball Had burnished the windows of his cabin so small, And the Kingdom of God with its Great Shining light, Like the Golden Windows that shone so bright. Is not a far distant place, somewhere, It's as close to you as a silent prayer, And your search for God will end and begin When you look for Him and find Him within.
Helen Steiner Rice
Used to be a hobo right smart. back in the thirties. They wasnt no work I dont care what you could do. I was ridin through the mountains one night, state of Colorado. Dead of winter it was and bitter cold. I had just a smidgin of tobacco, bout enough for one or two smokes. I was in one of them old slatsided cars and I'd been up and down in it like a dog tryin to find some place where the wind wouldnt blow. Directly I scrunched up in a corner and rolled me a smoke and lit it and thowed the match down. Well, they was some sort of stuff in the floor about like tinder and it caught fire. I jumped up and stomped on it and it aint done nothin but burn faster. Wasnt two minutes the whole car was afire. I run to the door and got it open and we was goin up this grade through the mountains in the snow with the moon on it and it was just blue looking and dead quiet out there and them big old black pine trees going by. I jumped for it and lit in a snowbank and what I'm goin to tell you you'll think peculiar but it's the god's truth. That was in nineteen and thirty one and if I live to be a hunnerd year old I dont think I'll ever see anything as pretty as that train on fire goin up that mountain and around the bend and them flames lightin up the snow and the trees and the night.
Cormac McCarthy (Suttree)
Gospel The new grass rising in the hills, the cows loitering in the morning chill, a dozen or more old browns hidden in the shadows of the cottonwoods beside the streambed. I go higher to where the road gives up and there’s only a faint path strewn with lupine between the mountain oaks. I don’t ask myself what I’m looking for. I didn’t come for answers to a place like this, I came to walk on the earth, still cold, still silent. Still ungiving, I’ve said to myself, although it greets me with last year’s dead thistles and this year’s hard spines, early blooming wild onions, the curling remains of spider’s cloth. What did I bring to the dance? In my back pocket a crushed letter from a woman I’ve never met bearing bad news I can do nothing about. So I wander these woods half sightless while a west wind picks up in the trees clustered above. The pines make a music like no other, rising and falling like a distant surf at night that calms the darkness before first light. “Soughing” we call it, from Old English, no less. How weightless words are when nothing will do.
Philip Levine (Breath)
Back out of all this now too much for us, Back in a time made simple by the loss Of detail, burned, dissolved, and broken off Like graveyard marble sculpture in the weather, There is a house that is no more a house Upon a farm that is no more a farm And in a town that is no more a town. The road there, if you’ll let a guide direct you Who only has at heart your getting lost, May seem as if it should have been a quarry— Great monolithic knees the former town Long since gave up pretense of keeping covered. And there’s a story in a book about it: Besides the wear of iron wagon wheels The ledges show lines ruled southeast-northwest, The chisel work of an enormous Glacier That braced his feet against the Arctic Pole. You must not mind a certain coolness from him Still said to haunt this side of Panther Mountain. Nor need you mind the serial ordeal Of being watched from forty cellar holes As if by eye pairs out of forty firkins. As for the woods’ excitement over you That sends light rustle rushes to their leaves, Charge that to upstart inexperience. Where were they all not twenty years ago? They think too much of having shaded out A few old pecker-fretted apple trees. Make yourself up a cheering song of how Someone’s road home from work this once was, Who may be just ahead of you on foot Or creaking with a buggy load of grain. The height of the adventure is the height Of country where two village cultures faded Into each other. Both of them are lost. And if you’re lost enough to find yourself By now, pull in your ladder road behind you And put a sign up CLOSED to all but me. Then make yourself at home. The only field Now left’s no bigger than a harness gall. First there’s the children’s house of make-believe, Some shattered dishes underneath a pine, The playthings in the playhouse of the children. Weep for what little things could make them glad. Then for the house that is no more a house, But only a belilaced cellar hole, Now slowly closing like a dent in dough. This was no playhouse but a house in earnest. Your destination and your destiny’s A brook that was the water of the house, Cold as a spring as yet so near its source, Too lofty and original to rage. (We know the valley streams that when aroused Will leave their tatters hung on barb and thorn.) I have kept hidden in the instep arch Of an old cedar at the waterside A broken drinking goblet like the Grail Under a spell so the wrong ones can’t find it, So can’t get saved, as Saint Mark says they mustn’t. (I stole the goblet from the children’s playhouse.) Here are your waters and your watering place. Drink and be whole again beyond confusion.
Robert Frost
16 Over the footbridge.— In our relations with people who are bashful about their feelings, we must be capable of dissimulation; they feel a sudden hatred against anyone who catches them in a tender, enthusiastic, or elevated feeling, as if he had seen their secrets. If you want to make them feel good at such moments, you have to make them laugh or voice some cold but witty sarcasm; then their feeling freezes and they regain power over themselves. But I am giving you the moral before telling the story. There was a time in our lives when we were so close that nothing seemed to obstruct our friendship and brotherhood, and only a small footbridge separated us. Just as you were about to step on it, I asked you: “Do you want to cross the footbridge to me?” —Immediately, you did not want to any more; and when I asked you again, you remained silent. Since then mountains and torrential rivers and whatever separates and alienates have been cast between us, and even if we wanted to get together, we couldn’t. But when you now think of that little footbridge, words fail you and you sob and marvel.
Friedrich Nietzsche (The Gay Science with a Prelude in Rhymes & an Appendix of Songs)
Interruption is weakness, young Kellhus. It arises from the passions and not from the intellect. From the darkness that comes before.” “I understand, Pragma.” The cold eyes peered through him and saw this was true. “When the Dûnyain first found Ishuäl in these mountains, they knew only one principle of the Logos. What was that principle, young Kellhus?” “That which comes before determines that which comes after.” The Pragma nodded. “Two thousand years have passed, young Kellhus, and we still hold that principle true. Does that mean the principle of before and after, of cause and effect, has grown old?” “No, Pragma.” “And why is that? Do men not grow old and die? Do not even mountains age and crumble with time?” “Yes, Pragma.” “Then how can this principle not be old?” “Because,” Kellhus answered, struggling to snuff a flare of pride, “the principle of before and after is nowhere to be found within the circuit of before and after. It is the ground of what is ‘young’ and what is ‘old,’ and so cannot itself be young or old.” “Yes. The Logos is without beginning or end. And yet Man, young Kellhus, does possess a beginning and end—like all beasts. Why is Man distinct from other beasts?” “Because like beasts, Man stands within the circuit of before and after, and yet he apprehends the Logos. He possesses intellect.
R. Scott Bakker (The Darkness That Comes Before (The Prince of Nothing, #1))
From the mountain peaks for streams descend and flow near the town; in the cascades the white water is calling, but the mistis do not hear it. On the hillsides, on the plains, on the mountaintops the yellow flowers dance in the wind, but the mistis hardly see them. At dawn, against the cold sky, beyond the edge of the mountains, the sun appears; then the larks and doves sing, fluttering their little wings; the sheep and the colts run to and fro in the grass, while the mistis sleep or watch, calculating the weight of their steers. In the evening Tayta Inti gilds the sk, gilds the earth, but they sneeze, spur their horses on the road, or drink coffee, drink hot pisco. But in the hearts of the Puquios, the valley is weeping and laughing, in their eyes the sky and the sun are alive; within them the valley sings with the voice of the morning, of the noontide, of the afternoon, of the evening.
José María Arguedas (Yawar Fiesta)
Across the broken apses and shattered naves of a hundred ruined Byzantine churches, the same smooth, cold, neo-classical faces of the saints and apostles stare down like a gallery of deaf mutes; and through this thundering silence the everyday reality of life in the Byzantine provinces remains persistently difficult to visualise. The sacred and aristocratic nature of Byzantine art means that we have very little idea of what the early Byzantine peasant or shopkeeper looked like; we have even less idea of what he thought, what he longed for, what he loved or what he hated. Yet through the pages of The Spiritual Meadow one can come closer to the ordinary Byzantine than is possible through virtually any other single source. Dalrymple, William (2012-06-21). From the Holy Mountain: A Journey in the Shadow of Byzantium (Text Only) (Kindle Location 248). HarperCollins Publishers. Kindle Edition.
William Dalrymple (From the Holy Mountain: A Journey Among the Christians of the Middle East)
Then Jip went up to the front of the ship and smelt the wind; and he started muttering to himself, "Tar; Spanish onions; kerosene oil; wet raincoats; crushed laurel-leaves; rubber burning; lace-curtains being washed--No, my mistake, lace-curtains hanging out to dry; and foxes--hundreds of 'em--cubs; and--" "Can you really smell all those different things in this one wind?" asked the Doctor. "Why, of course!" said Jip. "And those are only a few of the easy smells--the strong ones. Any mongrel could smell those with a cold in the head. Wait now, and I'll tell you some of the harder scents that are coming on this wind--a few of the dainty ones." Then the dog shut his eyes tight, poked his nose straight up in the air and sniffed hard with his mouth half-open. For a long time he said nothing. He kept as still as a stone. He hardly seemed to be breathing at all. When at last he began to speak, it sounded almost as though he were singing, sadly, in a dream. "Bricks," he whispered, very low--"old yellow bricks, crumbling with age in a garden-wall; the sweet breath of young cows standing in a mountain-stream; the lead roof of a dove-cote--or perhaps a granary--with the mid-day sun on it; black kid gloves lying in a bureau-drawer of walnut-wood; a dusty road with a horses' drinking-trough beneath the sycamores; little mushrooms bursting through the rotting leaves; and--and--and--" "Any parsnips?" asked Gub-Gub. "No," said Jip. "You always think of things to eat. No parsnips whatever.
Hugh Lofting (The Story of Doctor Dolittle (Doctor Dolittle, #1))
What the hell happened to your leg?" Ang asked him. Matt looked down at his shin, which was scraped and oozing and seemed to be caked in mud. "Crashed." "Crashed what?" Ang asked. "My mountain bike. We just got back." "You crashed, then what? Rolled in dirt?" He laughed. "Something like that actually. It's not a successful ride if you don't bleed." He must not have noticed the look of horror on my face, because he asked, suddenly enthusiastic, "You guys ride?"Angelo and I just looked at each other, and he seemed to realize that was a "no." "Too bad. Well, make yourselves at home. Beer's in the fridge. I have to get cleaned up. Kickoff's in ten minutes." "Football?" Angelo asked. Matt looked at his as if he had just asked if the sky was really blue. "Yeah! First game of the regular season!" We just stared blankly at him, and he just laughed and disappeared down the hall. Angelo looked at me with a smile on his face. "Four fags watchin' football. Must be pretty fuckin' cold in hell right now.
Marie Sexton (A to Z (Coda Books, #2))
The dude feels right fatherly. Takes her down to the crick to wash the underground off of her. Just can't bring himself to shoot her while she's filthy and starving. There's time. Offers her a cake of French-milled soap he brought all the way out from Chicago. Smells like gardenias if you know your flowers, and the dude does. Snow White knows something's skewed but she grabs it, strips off like it's nothing and climbs in the water. She don't shiver even though that stream has to be as cold as a wagon tire. The miner's crud comes off her in black ribbons. The duded watches another girl come out of the blind mole-skin she was walking around it. This one has muscles like a mountain cat and a kind of pretty he doesn't know what to do with. For fairness he'd take her stepmother six days and twice on Sunday. The beauty Snow White's got has nothing to do with him. She's scarred up and suspicious an shameless. Her pretty's not for him. It's like saying the moon's got a fine figure on her. Maybe true, but what good is that to a man?
Catherynne M. Valente (Six-Gun Snow White)
As I speak, his fingers trail down my arm. I’m just so relieved he’s willing to touch me after I’ve told him this. He turns my hand over and traces the fine lines on my palm. “And?” He looks up beneath heavy lids. “What else should I know about you?” “My skin—” I stop, swallow. He leans down, presses his lips to my wrist in a feathery kiss. “What about your skin?” “You know. You’ve seen it,” I rasp. “It changes. The color becomes—” “Like fire.” His gaze lifts from my wrist and he says that word he said so long ago surrounded in cold mists, tucked on a ledge above a whispering pool of water. “Beautiful.” “You said that before. In the mountains.” “I meant it. Still do.” I laugh weakly. “I guess this means you’re not mad at me.” “I would be mad, if I could.” He frowns. “I should be.” He inches closer to me on the couch. We sink deeper into the tired cushions. “This is impossible.” “This what?” I clutch the collar of his shirt in my fingers. His face is so close I study the varying color of his eyes. For a long time, he says nothing. Stares at me in that way that makes me want to squirm. For a moment, it seems that his irises glow and the pupils shrink to slits. Then, he mutters, “A hunter in love with his prey.” My chest squeezes. I suck in a breath. Pretty wonderful, I think, but am too embarrassed to say it. Even after what he just admitted. He loves me? Studying him, I let myself consider this and whether he can possibly mean it. But what else could it be? What else could drive him to this moment with me? To turn his back on his family’s way of life? As he looks at me in that desperate, devouring way, I’m reminded of those moments in his car when he tended the cut on my palm and ran his hand over my leg. My belly twists. I glance around, see how seriously, dangerously alone we are. More alone than in the stairwell. Or even the first time together, on that ledge. I lick my lips. Now we’re alone with no school bell ready to rip us apart. Even more alarming, no more secrets stand between us. No barriers. Nothing to stop us at all. I hold my breath until I feel the first press of his lips, certain I’ve never been this close to another soul, this vulnerable. We kiss until we’re both breathless, warm and flushed, twisting against each other on the couch. His hands brush my bare back beneath my shirt, trace every bump of my spine. My back tingles, wings vibrating just beneath the surface. I drink the cooler air from his lips, drawing it into my fiery lungs. I don’t even mind when he stops and watches my skin change colors, or touches my face as it blurs in and out. He kisses my changing face. Cheeks, nose, the corners of my eyes, sighing my name it like a benediction between each caress. His lips slide to my neck and I moan, arch, lost to everything but him. In this, with him . . . I’m as close to the sky as I’ve ever been.
Sophie Jordan (Firelight (Firelight, #1))
Reading is like skiing. When done well, when done by an expert, both reading and skiing are graceful, harmonious, activities. When done by a beginner, both are awkward, frustrating, and slow. Learning to ski is one of the most humiliating experiences an adult can undergo (that is one reason to start young). After all, an adult has been walking for a long time; he knows where his feet are; he knows how to put one foot in front of the other in order to get somewhere. But as soon as he puts skis on his feet, it is as though he had to learn to walk all over again. He slips and slides, falls down, has trouble getting up, gets his skis crossed, tumbles again, and generally looks- and feels- like a fool. Even the best instructor seems at first to be of no help. The ease with which the instructor performs actions that he says are simple but that the student secretly believes are impossible is almost insulting. How can you remember everything the instructors says you have to remember? Bend your knees. Look down the hill Keep your weight on the downhill ski. Keep your back straight, but nevertheless lean forward. The admonitions seem endless-how can you think about all that and still ski? The point about skiing, of course, is that you should not be thinking about the separate acts that, together, make a smooth turn or series of linked turns- instead, you should merely be looking ahead of you down the hill, anticipating bumps and other skiers, enjoying the feel of the cold wind on your cheeks, smiling with pleasure at the fluid grace of your body as you speed down the mountain. In other words, you must learn to forget the separate acts in order to perform all of them, and indeed any of them, well. But in order to forget them as separate acts, you have to learn them first as separate acts. only then can you put them together to become a good skier.
Mortimer J. Adler (How to Read a Book: The Classic Guide to Intelligent Reading)
Yes," he replied, "absolutely sans mademoiselle; for I am to take mademoiselle to the moon, and there I shall seek a cave in one of the white valleys among the volcano-tops, and mademoiselle shall live with me there, and only me." "She will have nothing to eat--you will starve her," observed Adèle. "I shall gather manna for her morning and night; the plains and hell-sides in the moon are bleached with manna, Adèle." "She will want to warm herself; what will she do for a fire?" "Fire rises out of the lunar mountains; when she is cold, I'll carry her up to a peak and lay her down on the edge of a crater." "Oh, she'll be uncomfortable there! And her clothes, they will wear out; how can she get new ones?" Mr. Rochester professed to be puzzled. "Hem!" said he. "What would you do, Adèle? Cudgel your brains for an expedient. How would a white or a pink cloud answer for a gown, do you think? And one could cut a pretty enough scarf out of a rainbow." "She is far better as she is," concluded Adèle, after musing some time; "besides, she would get tired of living with only you in the moon. If I were mademoiselle, I would never consent to go with you.
Charlotte Brontë (Jane Eyre)
CHAPTER  ELEVEN QUIDDITCH As they entered November, the weather turned very cold. The mountains around the school became icy gray and the lake like chilled steel. Every morning the ground was covered in frost. Hagrid could be seen from the upstairs windows defrosting broomsticks on the Quidditch field, bundled up in a long moleskin overcoat, rabbit fur gloves, and enormous beaverskin boots. The Quidditch season had begun. On Saturday, Harry would be playing in his first match after weeks of training: Gryffindor versus Slytherin. If Gryffindor won, they would move up into second place in the House Championship. Hardly anyone had seen Harry play because Wood had decided that, as their secret weapon, Harry should be kept, well, secret. But the news that he was playing Seeker had leaked out somehow, and Harry didn’t know which was worse — people telling him he’d be brilliant or people telling him they’d be running around underneath him holding a mattress. It was really lucky that Harry now had Hermione as a friend. He didn’t know how he’d have gotten through all his homework without her, what with all the last-minute Quidditch practice Wood was making them do. She had also lent him Quidditch Through the Ages, which turned out to be a very interesting read. Harry
J.K. Rowling (Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone (Harry Potter #1))
It was early autumn, then, before the snow began to fly. –(There’s an expression for you, born in the country, born from the imaginations of men and their feeling for the right word, the only word, to mirror clearly what they see! Those with few words must know how to use them.) Men who have seen it, who have watched it day by day outside their cabin window coming down from the sky, like the visible remorse of an ageing year; who have watched it bead upon the ears of the horses they rode, muffle the sound of hoofs on the trail, lie upon spruce boughs and over grass – cover, as if forever, the landscape in which they moved, round off the mountains, blanket the ice in the rivers – for them the snow flies. The snow doesn’t fall. It may ride the wind. It may descend slowly, in utter quiet, from the grey and laden clouds, so that you can hear the flakes touching lightly on the wide white waste, as they come to rest at the end of their flight. Flight – that’s the word. They beat in the air like wings, as if reluctant ever to touch the ground. I have observed them coming down, on a very cold day, near its end when the sky above me was still blue, in flakes great and wide as the palm of my hand. They were like immense moths winging down in the twilight, making the silence about me visible.
Howard O'Hagan (Tay John)
At first she did nothing, waiting for her husband to wake, which he did not, because that wasn’t a thing he ever did. She waited longer than she usually did, waited and waited, the boy wailing while she lay as still as a corpse, patiently waiting for the day when her corpse self would miraculously be reanimated and taken into the Kingdom of the Chosen, where it would create an astonishing art installation composed of many aesthetically interesting beds. The corpse would have unlimited child-care and be able to hang out and go to show openings and drink corpse wine with the other corpses whenever it wanted, because that was heaven. That was it. She lay there as long as she could without making a sound, a movement. Her child’s screams fanned a flame of rage that flickered in her chest. That single, white-hot light at the center of the darkness of herself—that was the point of origin from which she birthed something new, from which all women do. You light a fire early in your girlhood. You stoke it and tend it. You protect it at all costs. You don’t let it rage into a mountain of light, because that’s not becoming of a girl. You keep it secret. You let it burn. You look into the eyes of other girls and see their fires flickering there, offer conspiratorial nods, never speak aloud of a near-unbearable heat, a growing conflagration. You tend the flame because if you don’t you’re stuck, in the cold, on your own, doomed to seasonal layers, doomed to practicality, doomed to this is just the way things are, doomed to settling and understanding and reasoning and agreeing and seeing it another way and seeing it his way and seeing it from all the other ways but your own. And upon hearing the boy’s scream, the particular pitch and slice, she saw the flame behind her closed eyes. For a moment, it quivered on unseen air, then, at once, lengthened and thinned, paused, and dropped with a whump into her chest, then deeper into her belly, setting her aflame
Rachel Yoder (Nightbitch)
No, you don't understand, naturally' said the second swallow. 'First, we feel it stirring within us, a sweet unrest; then back come the recollections one by one, like homing pigeons. They flutter through our dreams at night, they fly with us in our wheelings and circlings by day. We hunger to inquire of each other, to compare notes and assure ourselves that it was all really true, as one by one the scents and sounds and names of long-forgotten places come gradually back and beckon to us...'I tried stopping on one year,' said the third swallow. 'I had grown so fond of the place that when the time came I hung back and let the others go on without me. For a few weeks it was all well enough, but afterwards, O the weary length of the nights! The shivering, sunless days! The air so clammy and chill, and not an insect in an acre of it! No, it was no good; my courage broke down, and one cold, stormy night I took wing, flying well inland on account of the strong easterly gales. It was snowing hard as I beat through the passes of the great mountains, and I had a stiff fight to win through; but never shall I forget the blissful feeling of the hot sun again on my back as I sped down to the lakes that lay so blue and placid below me, and the taste of my first fat insect. The past was like a bad dream; the future was all happy holiday
Kenneth Grahame (The Wind in the Willows)
I believe that there is one story in the world, and only one, that has frightened and inspired us, so that we live in a Pearl White serial of continuing thought and wonder. Humans are caught—in their lives, in their thoughts, in their hungers and ambitions, in their avarice and cruelty, and in their kindness and generosity too—in a net of good and evil. I think this is the only story we have and that it occurs on all levels of feeling and intelligence. Virtue and vice were warp and woof of our first consciousness, and they will be the fabric of our last, and this despite any changes we may impose on field and river and mountain, on economy and manners. There is no other story. A man, after he has brushed off the dust and chips of his life, will have left only the hard, clean questions: Was it good or was it evil? Have I done well—or ill? [...] In uncertainty I am certain that underneath their topmost layers of frailty men want to be good and want to be loved. Indeed, most of their vices are attempted short cuts to love. When a man comes to die, no matter what his talents and influence and genius, if he dies unloved his life must be a failure to him and his dying a cold horror. It seems to me that if you or I must choose between two courses of thought or action, we should remember our dying and try so to live that our death brings no pleasure to the world. We have only one story. All novels, all poetry, are built on the never-ending contest in ourselves of good and evil. And it occurs to me that evil must constantly respawn, while good, while virtue, is immortal. Vice has always a new fresh young face, while virtue is venerable as nothing else in the world is.
John Steinbeck (East of Eden)
I do love Oregon." My gaze wanders over the quiet, natural beauty surrounding us, which isn't limited to just this garden. "Being near the river, and the ocean, and the rocky mountains, and all this nature ... the weather." He chuckles. "I've never met anyone who actually loves rain. It's kind of weird. But cool, too," he adds quickly, as if afraid to offend me. "I just don't get it." I shrug. "It's not so much that I love rain. I just have a healthy respect for what if does. People hate it, but the world needs rain. It washes away dirt, dilutes the toxins in the air, feeds drought. It keeps everything around us alive." "Well, I have a healthy respect for what the sun does," he counters with a smile." "I'd rather have the sun after a good, hard rainfall." He just shakes his head at me but he's smiling. "The good with the bad?" "Isn't that life?" He frowns. "Why do I sense a metaphor behind that?" "Maybe there is a metaphor behind that." One I can't very well explain to him without describing the kinds of things I see every day in my life. The underbelly of society - where twisted morals reign and predators lurk, preying on the lost, the broken, the weak, the innocent. Where a thirteen-year-old sells her body rather than live under the same roof as her abusive parents, where punks gang-rape a drunk girl and then post pictures of it all over the internet so the world can relive it with her. Where a junkie mom's drug addiction is readily fed while her children sit back and watch. Where a father is murdered bacause he made the mistake of wanting a van for his family. In that world, it seems like it's raining all the time. A cold, hard rain that seeps into clothes, chills bones, and makes people feel utterly wretched. Many times, I see people on the worst day of their lives, when they feel like they're drowing. I don't enjoy seeing people suffer. I just know that if they make good choices, and accept the right help, they'll come out of it all the stronger for it. What I do enjoy comes after. Three months later, when I see that thirteen-year-old former prostitute pushing a mower across the front lawn of her foster home, a quiet smile on her face. Eight months later, when I see the girl who was raped walking home from school with a guy who wants nothing from her but to make her laugh. Two years later, when I see the junkie mom clean and sober and loading a shopping cart for the kids that the State finally gave back to her. Those people have seen the sun again after the harshest rain, and they appreciate it so much more.
K.A. Tucker (Becoming Rain (Burying Water, #2))
And all this time I was keeping my eyes open, or trying to, only they kept closing, because I wanted to go on watching the stars, where the most extraordinary things were happening. A bright satellite, a man-made star, very slowly and somehow carefully crossed the sky in a great arc, from one side to the other, a close arc, one knew it was not far away, a friendly satellite slowly going about its business round and round the globe. And then, much much farther away, stars were quietly shooting and tumbling and disappearing, silently falling and being extinguished, lost utterly silent falling stars, falling from nowhere to nowhere into an unimaginable extinction. How many of them there were, as if the heavens were crumbling at last and being dismantled. And I wanted to show all these things to my father. Later I knew that I had been asleep and I opened my eyes with wonder and the sky had utterly changed again and was no longer dark but bright, golden, gold-dust golden, as if curtain after curtain had been removed behind the stars I had seen before, and now I was looking into the vast interior of the universe, as if the universe were quietly turning itself inside out. Stars behind stars and stars behind stars behind stars until there was nothing between them, nothing beyond them, but dusty dim gold of stars and no space and no light but stars. The moon was gone. The water lapped higher, nearer, touching the rock so lightly it was audible only as a kind of vibration. The sea had fallen dark, in submission to the stars. And the stars seemed to move as if one could see the rotation of the heavens as a kind of vast crepitation, only now there were no more events, no shooting stars, no falling stars, which human senses could grasp or even conceive of. All was movement, all was change, and somehow this was visible and yet unimaginable. And I was no longer I but something pinned down as an atom, an atom of an atom, a necessary captive spectator, a tiny mirror into which it was all indifferently beamed, as it motionlessly seethed and boiled, gold behind gold behind gold. Later still I awoke and it had all gone; and for a few moments I thought that I had seen all those stars only in a dream. There was a weird shocking sudden quiet, as at the cessation of a great symphony or of some immense prolonged indescribable din. Had the stars then been audible as well as visible and had I indeed heard the music of the spheres? The early dawn light hung over the rocks and over the sea, with an awful intent gripping silence, as if it had seized these faintly visible shapes and were very slowly drawing tgem out of a darkness in which they wanted to remain. Even the water was now totally silent, not a tap, not a vibration. The sky was a faintly lucid grey and the sea was a lightless grey, and the rocks were a dark fuzzy greyish brown. The sense of loneliness was far more intense than it had been under the stars. Then I had felt no fear. Now I felt fear. I discovered that I was feeling very stiff and rather cold. The rock beneath me was very hard and I felt bruised and aching. I was surprised to find my rugs and cushions were wet with dew. I got up stiffly and shook them. I looked around me. Mountainous piled-up rocks hid the house. And I saw myself as a dark figure in the midst of this empty awfully silent dawn, where light was scarcely yet light, and I was afraid of myself and quickly lay down again and settled my rug and closed my eyes, lying there stiffly and not imagining that I would sleep again.
Iris Murdoch (The Sea, the Sea)
All about the hills the hosts of Mordor raged. The Captains of the West were foundering in a gathering sea. The sun gleamed red, and under the wings of the Nazgul the shadows of death fell dark upon the earth. Aragorn stood beneath his banner, silent and stern, as one lost in thought of things long past or far away; but his eyes gleamed like stars that shine the brighter as the night deepens. Upon the hill-top stood Gandalf, and he was white and cold and no shadow fell on him. The onslaught of Mordor broke like a wave on the beleaguered hills, voices roaring like a tide amid the wreck and crash of arms. As if to his eyes some sudden vision had been given, Gandalf stirred; and he turned, looking back north where the skies were pale and clear. Then he lifted up his hands and cried in a loud voice ringing above the din: The Eagles are coming! And many voices answered crying: The Eagles are coming! The Eagles are coming! The hosts of Mordor looked up and wondered what this sign might mean. There came Gwaihir the Windlord, and Landroval his brother, greatest of all the Eagles of the North, mightiest of the descendants of old Thorondor, who built his eyries in the inaccessible peaks of the Encircling Mountains when Middle-earth was young. Behind them in long swift lines came all their vassals from the northern mountains, speeding on a gathering wind. Straight down upon the Nazgul they bore, stooping suddenly out of the high airs, and the rush of their wide wings as they passed over was like a gale. But the Nazgul turned and fled, and vanished into Mordor's shadows, hearing a sudden terrible call out of the Dark Tower; and even at that moment all the hosts of Mordor trembled, doubt clutched their hearts, their laughter failed, their hands shook and their limbs were loosed. The Power that drove them on and filled them with hate and fury was wavering, its will was removed from them; and now looking in the eyes of their enemies they saw a deadly light and were afraid. Then all the Captains of the West cried aloud, for their hearts were filled with a new hope in the midst of darkness. Out from the beleaguered hills knights of Gondor, Riders of Rohan, Dunedain of the North, close-serried companies, drove against their wavering foes, piercing the press with the thrust of bitter spears. But Gandalf lifted up his arms and called once more in a clear voice: 'Stand, Men of the West! Stand and wait! This is the hour of doom.' And even as he spoke the earth rocked beneath their feet. Then rising swiftly up, far above the Towers of the Black Gate, high above the mountains, a vast soaring darkness sprang into the sky, flickering with fire. The earth groaned and quaked. The Towers of the Teeth swayed, tottered, and fell down; the mighty rampart crumbled; the Black Gate was hurled in ruin; and from far away, now dim, now growing, now mounting to the clouds, there came a drumming rumble, a roar, a long echoing roll of ruinous noise. 'The realm of Sauron is ended!' said Gandalf. 'The Ring-bearer has fulfilled his Quest.' And as the Captains gazed south to the Land of Mordor, it seemed to them that, black against the pall of cloud, there rose a huge shape of shadow, impenetrable, lightning-crowned, filling all the sky. Enormous it reared above the world, and stretched out towards them a vast threatening hand, terrible but impotent: for even as it leaned over them, a great wind took it, and it was all blown away, and passed; and then a hush fell. The Captains bowed their heads...
J.R.R. Tolkien (The Return of the King (The Lord of the Rings, #3))
They [mountains] are portions of the heart of the earth that have escaped from the dungeon down below, and rushed up and out. For the heart of the earth is a great wallowing mass, not of blood, as in the hearts of men and animals, but of glowing hot melted metals and stones. And as our hearts keep us alive, so that great lump of heat keeps the earth alive: it is a huge power of buried sunlight—that is what it is. Now think: out of that caldron, where all the bubbles would be as big as the Alps if it could get room for its boiling, certain bubbles have bubbled out and escaped—up and away, and there they stand in the cool, cold sky—mountains. Think of the change, and you will no more wonder that there should be something awful about the very look of a mountain: from the darkness—for where the light has nothing to shine upon, it is much the same as darkness—from the heat, from the endless tumult of boiling unrest—up, with a sudden heavenward shoot, into the wind, and the cold, and the starshine, and a cloak of snow that lies like ermine above the blue-green mail of the glaciers; and the great sun, their grandfather, up there in the sky; and their little old cold aunt, the moon, that comes wandering about the house at night; and everlasting stillness, except for the wind that turns the rocks and caverns into a roaring organ for the young archangels that are studying how to let out the pent-up praises of their hearts, and the molten music of the streams, rushing ever from the bosoms of the glaciers fresh-born. Think too of the change in their own substance—no longer molten and soft, heaving and glowing, but hard and shining and cold. Think of the creatures scampering over and burrowing in it, and the birds building their nests upon it, and the trees growing out of its sides, like hair to clothe it, and the lovely grass in the valleys, and the gracious flowers even at the very edge of its armour of ice, like the rich embroidery of the garment below, and the rivers galloping down the valleys in a tumult of white and green! And along with all these, think of the terrible precipices down which the traveller may fall and be lost, and the frightful gulfs of blue air cracked in the glaciers, and the dark profound lakes, covered like little arctic oceans with floating lumps of ice. All this outside the mountain! But the inside, who shall tell what lies there? Caverns of awfullest solitude, their walls miles thick, sparkling with ores of gold or silver, copper or iron, tin or mercury, studded perhaps with precious stones—perhaps a brook, with eyeless fish in it, running, running ceaseless, cold and babbling, through banks crusted with carbuncles and golden topazes, or over a gravel of which some of the stones are rubies and emeralds, perhaps diamonds and sapphires—who can tell?—and whoever can't tell is free to think—all waiting to flash, waiting for millions of ages—ever since the earth flew off from the sun, a great blot of fire, and began to cool. Then there are caverns full of water, numbing cold, fiercely hot—hotter than any boiling water. From some of these the water cannot get out, and from others it runs in channels as the blood in the body: little veins bring it down from the ice above into the great caverns of the mountain's heart, whence the arteries let it out again, gushing in pipes and clefts and ducts of all shapes and kinds, through and through its bulk, until it springs newborn to the light, and rushes down the mountain side in torrents, and down the valleys in rivers—down, down, rejoicing, to the mighty lungs of the world, that is the sea, where it is tossed in storms and cyclones, heaved up in billows, twisted in waterspouts, dashed to mist upon rocks, beaten by millions of tails, and breathed by millions of gills, whence at last, melted into vapour by the sun, it is lifted up pure into the air, and borne by the servant winds back to the mountain tops and the snow, the solid ice, and the molten stream.
George MacDonald (The Princess and Curdie (Princess Irene and Curdie, #2))