categorized under:


“I am as alive to the world as I have ever been—alive to everything I see and hear and feel. I revel in the spring sunshine, and the cream and purple hellebore in the garden; I listen to a radio discussion about the ethics of selective abortion, and chip in at points; the sound of a beloved voice on the phone brings a surge of pleasure. I think there is a sea-change, in old age—a metamorphosis of the sensibilities. With those old consuming vigours now muted, something else comes into its own—an almost luxurious appreciation of the world that you are still in. Spring was never so vibrant; autumn never so richly gold. People are of abiding interest—observed in the street, overheard on a bus. The small pleasures have bloomed into points of relish in the day—food, opening the newspaper (new minted, just for me), a shower, the comfort of bed. It is almost like some kind of end-game salute to the intensity of childhood experience, when the world was new. It is an old accustomed world now, but invested with fresh significance; I’ve seen all this before, done all this, but am somehow able to find new and sharpened pleasure.”

more info

source: “‘So This Is Old Age,'” The Guardian, October 4, 2013.

category: , , ,

medium: Newspaper essay

“It is an incalculable added pleasure to any one’s sum of happiness if he or she grows to know, even slightly and imperfectly, how to read and enjoy the wonder-book of nature.”

more info

source: Outdoor Pastimes of an American Hunter (New York: Charles Scribner’s Sons, 1908), 339.

view on Google Books

category: , ,

medium: nonfiction

“Now there is one thing I can tell you: you will enjoy certain pleasures you would not fathom now.”

more info

source: 1907 letter to Georges de Lauris, whose mother had just died, in Mourning Diary by Roland Barthes (New York: Hill and Wang, 2010), 170.

category: , ,

medium: letter

via: Carolyn Deuschle
Quality Quote Collecting