I am trying to find a way to explain this place, and failing completely. It’s not because the place is inconstant, or over-large, or complicated, or anything like that, but just that it is, in fact, so very simple that there is no way to explain it without making it seem more complicated than it actually is. As we all know, descriptions should try to present things as they actually are, so it would be pointless of me to tease out some rough and tangled observations as though they managed to get at the thing itself. Since I am thus unable to fulfill even this bare minimum of a writer’s qualifications, I shall desist and offer up a few irrelevant quotations instead.
The pursuit of poetry has helped many a man live to a ripe old age, whereas countless others have died young by seeking more to eat than they really needed. (2002.105, p. 289)
They were all wreathed in fronds of oak, and their hands were full of fragrant herbs or flowers, so that if anyone had encountered them, he would only have been able to say: ‘Either these people will not be vanquished by death, or they will welcome it with joy.’ (ibid., p. 648)