Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Potent Quotables: Hum of dynamos

Stumbled upon this quote today while looking through some books on Ulysses.
For her, it was one of the moments when we are reminded that our lives are not in our keeping, and that whatsoever is to befall us originates in sources beyond our power. Our wills may indeed reach the length of our arms, or as far as our voices can penetrate space; but without us and within us moves one universe* that saves us or ruins us only for its own purposes; and we are no more free amid its laws than the leaves of the forest are free to decide their own shapes and seasons of unfolding, to order the showers by which they are to be nourished, and the storms which shall scatter them at last.---from The Mettle of the Pasture by James Lane Allen
*In Ulysses pg 242, Stephen walks by a powerplant and hears the electric humming which brings about this thought: "Throb always without you and the throb always within."

The quote is taken from a book review Joyce wrote in 1903.

1 comment:

  1. Thanks for that. I was just talking to a friend yesterday who spoke of the universe in just this kind of way, and I'll forward this to her.