— Carly Simon , Boys in the Trees
My 'morals' were sound, even a bit puritanic, but when a hidebound old deacon inveighed against dancing I rebelled. By the time of graduation I was still a 'believer' in orthodox religion, but had strong questions which were encouraged at Harvard. In Germany I became a freethinker and when I came to teach at an orthodox Methodist Negro school I was soon regarded with suspicion, especially when I refused to lead the students in public prayer. When I became head of a department at Atlanta, the engagement was held up because again I balked at leading in prayer. I refused to teach Sunday school. When Archdeacon Henry Phillips, my last rector, died, I flatly refused again to join any church or sign any church creed. From my 30th year on I have increasingly regarded the church as an institution which defended such evils as slavery, color caste, exploitation of labor and war..
Whose woods these are I think I know.
His house is in the village, though;
He will not see me stopping here
To watch his woods fill up with snow.
My little horse must think it queer
To stop without a farmhouse near
Between the woods and frozen lake
The darkest evening of the year.
He gives his harness bells a shake
To ask if there is some mistake.
The only other sound's the sweep
Of easy wind and downy flake.
The woods are lovely, dark, and deep,
But I have promises to keep,
And miles to go before I sleep,
And miles to go before I sleep.
There’s no way that Michael Jackson or whoever Jackson should have a million thousand droople billion dollars and then there’s people starving. There’s no way! There’s no way that these people should own planes and there people don’t have houses. Apartments. Shacks. Drawers. Pants! I know you’re rich. I know you got 40 billion dollars, but can you just keep it to one house? You only need ONE house. And if you only got two kids, can you just keep it to two rooms? I mean why have 52 rooms and you know there’s somebody with no room?! It just don’t make sense to me. It don’t.
I never considered disobeying an order or even a request from Daddy. I loved and admired him, and one of my preeminent goals in life was to earn his approbation. I learned to expect his criticisms, always constructive, but his accolades were rare. My
But let me tell you this: sometimes at night, when I look up at the stars, an see the whole sky jus laid out there, don't you think I ain't rememberin it all. I still got dreams like anybody else, an ever so often, I am thinkin about how things might of been. An then, all of a sudden, I'm forty, fifty, sixty years ole, you know?
Well, so what? I may be a idiot, but most of the time, anyway, I tried to do the right thing-- an dreams is jus dreams, ain't they? So whatever else has happened, I am figgerin this: I can always look back an say, at least I ain't led no hum-drum life.
You know what I mean?
I'm tired of living unable to love anyone. I don't have a single friend - not one. And, worst of all, I can't even love myself. Why is that? Why can't I love myself? It's because I can't love anyone else. A person learns how to love himself through the simple acts of loving and being loved by someone else. Do you understand what I am saying? A person who is incapable of loving another cannot properly love himself.
At present I absolutely want to paint a starry sky. It often seems to me that night is still more richly coloured than the day; having hues of the most intense violets, blues and greens. If only you pay attention to it you will see that certain stars are lemon-yellow, others pink or a green, blue and forget-me-not brilliance. And without my expatiating on this theme it is obvious that putting little white dots on the blue-black is not enough to paint a starry sky.
In his early twenties, a man started collecting paintings, many of which later became famous: Picasso, Van Gogh, and others. Over the decades he amassed a wonderful collection. Eventually, the man’s beloved son was drafted into the military and sent to Vietnam, where he died while trying to save his friend. About a month after the war ended, a young man knocked on the devastated father’s door. “Sir,” he said, “I know that you like great art, and I have brought you something not very great.” Inside the package, the father found a portrait of his son. With tears running down his cheeks, the father said, “I want to pay you for this.ℍ “No,” the young man replied, “he saved my life. You don’t owe me anything.ℍ The father cherished the painting and put it in the center of his collection. Whenever people came to visit, he made them look at it. When the man died, his art collection went up for sale. A large crowd of enthusiastic collectors gathered. First up for sale was the amateur portrait. A wave of displeasure rippled through the crowd. “Let’s forget about that painting!” one said. “We want to bid on the valuable ones,” said another. Despite many loud complaints, the auctioneer insisted on starting with the portrait. Finally, the deceased man’s gardener said, “I’ll bid ten dollars.ℍ Hearing no further bids, the auctioneer called out, “Sold for ten dollars!” Everyone breathed a sigh of relief. But then the auctioneer said, “And that concludes the auction.” Furious gasps shook the room. The auctioneer explained, “Let me read the stipulation in the will: “Sell the portrait of my son first, and whoever buys it gets the entire art collection. Whoever takes my son gets everything.ℍ It’s the same way with God Almighty. Whoever takes his Son gets everything.
I have heard there are troubles of more than one kind. Some come from ahead and some come from behind. But I've bought a big bat. I'm all ready you see. Now my troubles are going to have troubles with me!
We are all alone, born alone, die alone, and—in spite of True Romance magazines—we shall all someday look back on our lives and see that, in spite of our company, we were alone the whole way. I do not say lonely—at least, not all the time—but essentially, and finally, alone. This is what makes your self-respect so important, and I don't see how you can respect yourself if you must look in the hearts and minds of others for your happiness.