June 27, 2008

Shakespeare fills us with wonder

Shakespeare fills us with wonder the first time we approach him. We go away, & work, & think, for years, & and come again, he astonishes us anew. Then having drank deeply & saturated us with his genius, we lose sight of it for another period of years. By & by we return, & there he stands immeasurable as at first. We have grown wiser, but only that we should see him wiser than ever. He resembles a high mountain which the traveller sees the morning & thinks he shall quickly near it & pass it & leave it behind. But he journeys all day till noon, till night. There still is the dim mountain close by him, having scarce altered its bearings since the morning light.



—Ralph Waldo Emerson [from his journals, Nov. 10-11, 1838], in EMERSON IN HIS JOURNALS, selected and edited by Joel Porte, Harvard University Press, Cambridge (Massachsetts) - London (England), 1982.



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