Saturday, November 25, 2017

"You Can't Go Home Again" by Thomas Wolfe

Excerpts from"You Can't Go Home Again"
Thomas Wolfe

Child, child, have patience and belief,for life is many days,
and each present hour will pass away. Son, son, you have been
mad and drunken, furious and wild, filled with hatred and despair,
and all the dark confusions of the soul - but so have we.

You found the earth too great for your one life, you found your
brain and sinew smaller than the hunger and desire that fed on them -
but it has been this way with all men. You have stumbled on in darkness,
you have been pulled in opposite directions, you have faltered,
you have missed the way, but, child, this is the chronicle of the earth.

And now, because you have known madness and despair, and because you will
grow desperate again before you come to evening, we who have stormed
the ramparts of the furious earth and been hurled back, we who have been
maddened by the unknowable and bitter mystery of love, we who have hungered
after fame and savored all of life, the tumult, pain, and frenzy, and now
sit quietly by our windows watching all that henceforth never more shall
touch us - we call upon you to take heart, for we can swear to you that
these things pass.

You can't go back home to your family, back home to your childhood,
back home to romantic love, back home to a young man's dreams of glory
and of fame, back home to exile, to escape to Europe and some foreign land,
back home to lyricism, to singing just for singing's sake, back home
to aestheticism, to one's youthful idea of 'the artist' and
the all-sufficiency of 'art' and 'beauty' and 'love,' back home to
the ivory tower, back home to places in the country, to the cottage
in Bermude, away from all the strife and conflict of the world,

back home to the father you have lost and have been looking for,
back home to someone who can help you, save you, ease the burden
for you, back home to the old forms and systems of things which
once seemed everlasting but which are changing all the time--back
home to the escapes of Time and Memory.
Thomas Wolfe,You can't go home again

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