Thursday, December 30, 2010

Meandering we go . . .

Today is the birthday of Paul Frederic Bowles (December 30, 1910 – November 18, 1999), composer, author, and translator. He is best known for his first novel The Sheltering Sky.

"Death is always on the way, but the fact that you don't know when it will arrive seems to take away from the finiteness of life. It's that terrible precision that we hate so much. But because we don't know, we get to think of life as an inexhaustible well. Yet everything happens a certain number of times, and a very small number, really. How many more times will you remember a certain afternoon of your childhood, some afternoon that's so deeply a part of your being that you can't even conceive of your life without it? Perhaps four or five times more. Perhaps not even. How many more times will you watch the full moon rise? Perhaps twenty. And yet it all seems limitless."
- Paul Bowles

"Whereas the tourist generally hurries back home at the end of a few weeks or months, the traveler, belonging no more to one place than to the next, moves slowly, over periods of years, from one part of the earth to another."
- Paul Bowles

"Another important difference between tourist and traveler is that the former accepts his own civilization without question; not so the traveler, who compares it with the others, and rejects those elements he finds not to his liking."
- Paul Bowles

"If people and their manner of living were alike everywhere, there would not be much point in moving from one place to another."
- Paul Bowles

"There is a way to master silence
Control its curves, inhabit its dark corners
And listen to the hiss of time outside."
- Paul Bowles

Bowles image source (1)

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