Weekend

Weekend Words: Dawn

“No eternal reward will forgive us now for wasting the dawn.”

Solomon Delane, “A View near Tivoli at Dawn” (1777), oil on canvas, 71 x 91 cm, private collection (image via Web Gallery of Art)

Before dawn on July 26th, armed FBI agents staged a raid on the home of Paul Manafort, the former campaign director for Donald J. Trump.

No untroubled day has ever dawned for me.

—Seneca the Elder

A dreamer is one who can only find his way by moonlight, and his punishment is that he sees the dawn before the rest of the world.

—Oscar Wilde

When the child of morning, rosy-fingered Dawn, appeared, we admired the island and wandered all over it, while the nymphs Jove’s daughters roused the wild goats that we might get some meat for our dinner.

—Homer, The Odyssey

I keep the subject of my inquiry constantly before me, and wait till the first dawning opens gradually, by little and little, into a full and clear light.

—Isaac Newton

For what human ill does dawn not seem to be alternative?

—Thornton Wilder

Unreal City
Under the brown fog of a winter dawn,
A crowd flowed over London Bridge,
I hand not thought death had undone so many.

—T. S. Eliot, “The Waste Land”

People who are born even-tempered, placid and untroubled — secure from violent passions or temptations to evil — those who have never needed to struggle all night with the Angel to emerge lame but victorious at dawn, never become great saints.

—Eva Le Gallienne

Bliss was it in that dawn to be alive,
But to be young was very heaven!

—William Wordsworth, “The French Revolution, as It Appeared to Enthusiasts”

It was once said that the moral test of Government is how that Government treats those who are in the dawn of life, the children; those who are in the twilight of life, the elderly; and those who are in the shadows of life, the sick, the needy and the handicapped.

—Hubert H. Humphrey

All these crushing questions; but whatever else remained the same, the light had changed, and you cannot find the pearly dawn at noonday.

—George Eliot, Middlemarch

But, truly, I have wept too much! The Dawns are heartbreaking.
Every moon is atrocious and every sun bitter:
Sharp love has swollen me up with heady langours.
O let my keel split! O let me sink to the bottom!

—Arthur Rimbaud, “The Drunken Boat”

When grace is joined with wrinkles, it is adorable. There is an unspeakable dawn in happy old age.

—Victor Hugo

Slow buds the pink dawn like a rose
From out night’s gray and cloudy sheath;
Softly and still it grows and grows,
Petal by petal, leaf by leaf;
Each sleep-imprisoned creature breaks
Its dreamy fetters, one by one,
And love awakes, and labor wakes,—
The morning comes before the sun.

—Susan Coolidge, “The Morning Comes Before The Sun”

I can taste the tin of the sky — the real tin thing.
Winter dawn is the color of metal,
The trees stiffen into place like burnt nerves.
All night I have dreamed of destruction, annihilations.

—Sylvia Path, “Waking in Winter”

If work and leisure are soon to be subordinated to this one utopian principle — absolute busyness — then utopia and melancholy will come to coincide: an age without conflict will dawn, perpetually busy — and without consciousness.

—Gunther Grass

It is possible to believe that all the past is but the beginning of a beginning, and that all that is and has been is but the twilight of the dawn. It is possible to believe that all the human mind has ever accomplished is but the dream before the awakening.

—H. G. Wells

Blow the dust off the clock. Your watches are behind the times. Throw open the heavy curtains which are so dear to you — you do not even suspect that the day has already dawned outside.

—Alexandr Solzhenitsyn

The song dream happened and the cloven hoofed piper
Played in that holy ground where they felt the awe and wonder
And they all were unafraid of the great god Pan

And the wind in the willows and the piper at the gates of dawn.

—Van Morrison, “Piper at the Gates of Dawn”

No eternal reward will forgive us now for wasting the dawn.

—Jim Morrison, “The WASP (Texas Radio and the Big Beat)”

Though force can protect in emergency, only justice, fairness, consideration and co-operation can finally lead men to the dawn of eternal peace.

—Dwight D. Eisenhower

Not knowing when the dawn will come, I open every door.

—Emily Dickinson

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