2.10.2005

Thoreau's Journal: 10-Feb-1852

Now if there are any who think that I am vainglorious, that I set myself up above others and crow over their low estate, let me tell them that I could tell a pitiful story respecting myself as well as them, if my spirits held out to do it; I could encourage them with a sufficient list of failures, and could flow as humbly as the very gutters themselves; I could enumerate a list of as rank offenses as ever reached the nostrils of heaven; that I think worse of myself than they can possibly think of me, being better acquainted with the man. I put the best face on the matter. I will tell them this secret, if they will not tell it to anybody else.

6 comments:

Matt said...

Hi Greg. Do you ever attempt to frame these quotes with your own reflections? Or is it enough to let the Big Other decide? I am simply wondering what made you choose this passage, among so many potential others...Sincerely, Matt

Greg said...

Matt, I never frame with my reflections. My intention here is to give voice to Henry. As for why this particular passage from all the others. Many reasons go into it. You could post from '51 and '52 alone since those were the days leading towards Walden. But I try to dip into those years selectively. I also like passages that are personal. As if a blog. This one fit that bill. But I look for some quality that's difficult to explain. Maybe a keen observation. Maybe something almost spiritual in nature. Maybe a touch of humor. A one-liner sometimes. I like to mix it up. too. But I usually know it when I read it.

Matt said...

Hmmmm....but are they really "your reflections" if you never frame them? Just wondering./

Matt said...

Not that I in any way dispute the worthiness of Thoreau as a resource, mind you.

Greg said...

Then, I never frame with my thoughts. Hmmm, is there a zen koan I'm unaware. If a reflection falls unframed, do you still see the picture?

Jack Saturday said...

A psychic reader of head-bumps came to Athens a while back, and read Socrates- "You are capable of every foul vice and evil" he said. Socrates replied "You know me, sir."