Well, what fun it has been to see the contest entries emerge in the last week. Eleven readers responded, some with one sentence, and some with several. I had great plans to find a polling widget and install it on this site to make tracking easier, but I think the numbers are small enough that we can keep track of the votes through the comments section both here and in FaceBook. I will try. Each contestant has been given a number and a name or nickname. Please vote for the number, name, and (in the case of multiple entries) the sentence you like best. It would be wonderful if you include your reasons. Winners will be announced on June 4. Have fun. At least one of these contestants will win a hand-picked memoir from my bookshelf. Who shall it be?
The distance between Mooreland in 1965 and a city like San Francisco in 1965 is roughly equivalent to the distance starlight must travel before we look up casually from a cornfield and see it. –Haven Kimmel in A girl named Zippy
You promised me gloves from the skins of the fishes
The smile of the dolphin for a ring in my hands
From the song, “You Brought Me Up.” Words by Louis De Paor. I know the song from a CD by Karan Casey, who used to sing with the Irish group Solas.
“There were ten thousand, thousand fruit to touch, / cherish in hand, and not let fall.” — Robert Frost, from “After Apple Picking”
And what you thought you came for
Is only a shell, a husk of meaning
From which the purpose breaks only when it is fulfilled
If at all. — T.S. Eliot, “Little Gidding”
If I take the wings of the morning, and dwell in the uttermost parts of the sea, even there shall thy hand lead me, and thy right hand shall hold me. — Psalm 139
Haply I think on thee, and then my state,
Like to the lark at break of day arising
From sullen earth, sings hymns at heaven’s gate;
For thy sweet love remember’d such wealth brings
That then I scorn to change my state with kings.
– Shakespeare, sonnet 29
Coleridge’s “As idle as a painted ship
Upon a painted ocean.”
“LOVELIEST of trees, the cherry now
Is hung with bloom along the bough,
And stands about the woodland ride
Wearing white for Eastertide.”
“I WONDER by my troth, what thou and I
Did, till we loved ?”
“Let me not to the marriage of true minds
“WHEN you are old and gray and full of sleep
And nodding by the fire, take down this book, And slowly read, and dream of the soft look
Your eyes had once, and of their shadows deep
And older still, maybe we all begin to think in terms of gratitude and appreciation for being alive, for the blessings of life and the divine presence in life”
“There are only two ways to live your life. One is as though nothing is a miracle. The other is as though everything is a miracle.”
i thank You God for most this amazing
day:for the leaping greenly spirits of trees
and a blue true dream of sky;and for everything
which is natural which is infinite which is yes
“The gloom of the world is but a shadow,
behind it, yet within reach, is joy.
There is a radiance and glory in the darkness, could we but see,
and to see, we only have to look. I beseech you to look.”
“If the only prayer you said in your whole life was, ‘thank you,’ that would suffice.” -
Still, the most beautiful, intelligent and spiritual line I know may be from that great spiritual teacher Yogi Berra, who said:
“When you come to a fork in the road, take it.”
Two from G. M. Hopkins:
…Because the Holy Ghost over the bent
World broods with warm breast and with ah ! bright wings.
—-from “God’s Grandeur”
All things counter, original, spare, strange;
Whatever is fickle, freckled (who knows how?)
With swift, slow; sweet, sour; adazzle, dim;
He fathers-forth whose beauty is past change;
—-from Pied Beauty
“But tonight they’ve forgotten their feet are so sore
and that’s what the wonderful night time is for.”
- Dr. Seuss (from The Sleep Book)
“It may not be automatic necessity that makes all daisies alike; it may be that God makes every daisy separately, but has never got tired of making them.” -G. K. Chesterton in “Orthodoxy”
“You can’t test courage cautiously” — Annie Dillard
“An original life is unexplored territory. You don’t get there by taking a taxi — you get there by carrying a canoe.” — Alan Alda
The most beautiful sentence…I love you.
The second most beautiful sentence…I forgive you.
Happiness is real only when shared.
11. Chin Pheng Oh
“Stand on the table once in awhile and open your eyes to a different view and perspective. Nothing is what it seems at first glance.”