• When I was a child I truly loved:Unthinking love as calm and deepAs the North Sea. But I have lived,And now I do not sleep

    John Gardner
  • So childhood too feels good at first, before one happens to notice the terrible sameness, age after age

    John Gardner
  • It would be, for me, mere pointless pleasure, an illusion of order for this one frail, foolish, flicker-flash in the long dull fall of eternity

    John Gardner
  • It was said in the old days that every year Thor made a circle around Middle-earth, beating back the enemies of order. Thor got older every year, and the circle occupied by gods and men grew smaller. The wisdom god, Woden, went out to the king of the trolls, got him in an armlock, and demanded to know of him how order might triumph over chaos."Give me your left eye," said the king of the trolls, "and I'll tell you." Without hesitation, Woden gave up his left eye. "Now tell me." The troll said, "The secret is, Watch with both eyes!

    John Gardner
  • All order, I've come to understand, is theoretical, unreal — a harmless, sensible, smiling mask men slide between the two great, dark realities, the self and the world — two snake pits

    John Gardner
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