On Barthes

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“nemo alteri loquatur in tenebris”-Spring broke the church, only left harmonious hummings and accordant whispers.

Go Set a Watchman-Harper Lee

“Bus service was erratic and seemed to go nowhere, but the Federal Government had forced a highway or two through the swamps, thus giving the citizens an opportunity for free egress. But few people took advantage of the roads, and why should they? If you did not want much, there was plenty.”-l89

“Revival time was a time of war: war on sin, Coca-Cola, picture shows, hunting on Sunday; war on the increasing tendency of young women to paint themselves and smake in public; war on drinking whiske-in this connection at least fifty children per summer went to the altar and swore they would not drink, smoke, or curse until they were twenty-one; war on something so nebulous Jean Louise never could figure out what it was, except there was nothing to swear concernning it; and was among the town’s ladies over who could set the best table for the evangelist.”-l656

“When you live in Yew York, you often have the feeling that New York’s not the world. I mean this: every time I come home, I feeli like I’m coming back to the world, and when I leave Maycomb it’s like leaving the world. It’s silly. I can’t expalin it, and what makes it sillier is that I’d go stark raving living in Maycomb.

Henry said, ‘You wouldn’t, you know. I don’t mean to press you for an answer-don’t move-but you’ve got to make up your mind to one thing, Jean Louise. You’re gonna see change, you’re gonna see Maycomb change its face completely in our lifetime. Your trouble, now, you want to have your cake and eat it: you want to stop the clock, but you can’t. Sooner or later you’ll have to decide whether it’s Maycomb or New York.'”-l845

“Unruffled by Herbert Jemson’s breach of allegiance, because he had not heard it, Mr. Stone rose and walked to the pulpit with Bible in hand. He opened it and said, ‘My text for today is taken from the twenty-first chapter of Isaiah, verse six:

For thus hath the Lord said unto me,
Go, set a watchman, let him declare what he seeth.'”-l1024

“‘Has it never occurred to you-have you never, somewhere aling the line, received vibrations to the effect-that this territory was a separate nation? No matter what its political bonds, a nation with its own people, exsiting within a nation? A society highly paradoxical, with alarming inequities, but with the private honor of thousands of persons winking like lighting bugs through the night? No war was ever fought for so many different reasons meeting in one reason clear as crystal. They fought to preserve their identitiy. Their political identity, their personal identity.'”-l2129

“‘Every man’s island, Jean Louise, every man’s watchman, is his conscience. There is no such thing as a collective conscious.'”-l2881

“‘You’ve no doubt heard some pretty offensive talk since you’ve been home, but instead of getting on your charge and blindly striking it down, you turned and ran. You said, in effect, ‘i don’t like the way these people do, so I have no time for them.’ You’d better take time for’em, honey, otherwise you’ll never grow. You’ll be the same at sixty as you are now-then you’ll be a case and not my neice. You have a tendency not to give anybody elbow room in your mind for their ideas, no matter how silly you think they are.'”-l2912

“‘It’s always easy to look back and see what we were, yesterday, ten years ago. It is hard to see what you are.'”-l2934

“‘the time your friends need you is when they’re wrong, Jean Louise. They don’t need you when they’re right-‘…

‘I thought fear of the Lord was the beginning of wisdom.’

‘It’s the same thing. Humility.'”-l2983

“Dear goodness, the things I learned. I did not want my world disturbed, but I wanted to crush the man who’s trying to preserve it for me. I wanted to stamp out all the people like him. I guess it’s like an airplane: they’re the drag and we’re the thrust, together we make the thing fly. too much of us and we’re nose-heavy, too much of them and we’re tail-heavy-it’s a matter of balance. I can’t beat him, and I can’t join him-“l3029

Constant education with slightly too much didactic content. But in general it is nice to read the book at this time of my life as a review and underline. I thought I’d go back to Maycomb with the same feeling as I had during summer. But I failed to realize it was ten years ago, and everything has since then changed.

 

 

Nibs

We are all too eager to break through
the darkest hay field and narrowest door.
he comes to us without holding our hands,
with some shuttered words and dirty footprints.

We took the rollercoaster uphill then stuck
no praying no cheating no backward heartbeat.
He dreams the clouds shifting our constructed world
pale faces naked names and painted gestures.

The notebook drafted full with stitches constrains our talks
We are quiet and smiling and pretending to wash them away.
His fussy ideas and antibiotics and smoking pipe
lit up together with the palace of untrustworthy propaganda on their nibs.