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Marjorie Holmes

  • The October breeze catches the cold wet sheets you are hanging on the line. Leaves fall, and trees keep up a gentle undulating dance of branches, like old people nodding their heads in resignation as the children leave home.

  • [Winter trees] are like tall-bodied women dancing unclothed in the tingling embrace of sky and wind ...

  • All the trees are furred with it, the smallest branches bearing their precious ermine carefully against the wind. Now and then glinting veils of it come cascading down, and the trees become graceful dancers, half-hidden, half-revealed through wheeling draperies.

  • Gray are the rains of March, yet paving the streets with silver, mirroring the lights of passing cars, and soaking the trees black as shining knights in suits of mail.

  • ... the forsythias leap into yellow flame. Their fires are purest gold, like fronds of sunshine congealed, thin as lace.

  • ... the habit of shutting doors behind us is invaluable to happiness; we must learn to shut life's doors to cut out the futile wind of past mistakes.

  • One day you're racing about the business of life, harried but vital, a part of its machinery. Then gradually but inexorably you are left out, until one day you find the machinery tearing along without you — and nobody even notices.

  • [The stars] are more than reflected on the water, they are doubled and tripled in brilliance as the wind stirs, as if combing them through its black hair.

  • What feeling in all the world is so nice as that of a child's hand in yours? It is soft. It is small and warm. It is as innocent and guileless as a rabbit or a puppy or a kitten huddling in the shelter of your clasp.

  • Prayer, to the thinking person, is almost inescapable.

  • ... simply to ask a blessing upon one's circumstances, whatever they are, is somehow to improve them, and to tap some mysterious source of energy and joy.

  • Death is the perfect knowing.

  • ... some people seem to graze like sheep in the placid pastures of their faith. Some of them were born there and never broke away ... Others, after some wandering, found shelter there and are quiet and content. They look with a bland mystification at the mavericks.

  • ... poetry ... is another way to be hurled straight into the heart of God.

Marjorie Holmes, U.S. writer, columnist

(1910 - 2002)