Best 53 of Gretel Ehrlich quotes - MyQuotes

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Gretel Ehrlich
By Anonym 15 Sep

Gretel Ehrlich

Turbulence, like many forms of trouble, cannot always be seen. We bounce so hard my arms sail helplessly above my head. In evolution, wing bones became arms and hands; perhaps I'm de-evolving.

By Anonym 13 Sep

Gretel Ehrlich

Islands are reminders of arrivals and departures.

By Anonym 13 Sep

Gretel Ehrlich

Finally, the lessons of impermanence taught me this: loss constitutes an odd kind of fullness; despair empties out into an unquenchable appetite for life.

By Anonym 14 Sep

Gretel Ehrlich

Love life first, then march through the gates of each season; go inside nature and develop the discipline to stop destructive behavior; learn tenderness toward experience, then make decisions based on creating biological wealth that includes all people, animals, cultures, currencies, languages, and the living things as yet undiscovered; listen to the truth the land will tell you; act accordingly.

By Anonym 14 Sep

Gretel Ehrlich

The fog lifted in the evening and a blue-black band at the horizon marked the end of the sea and the beginning of thought. Where does a beginning begin when nothing has gone on before?

By Anonym 15 Sep

Gretel Ehrlich

A writer makes a pact with loneliness. It is her, or his, beach on which waves of desire, wild mind, speculation break. In my work, in my life, I am always moving toward and away from aloneness. To write is to refuse to cover up the rawness of being alive, of facing death.

By Anonym 15 Sep

Gretel Ehrlich

There is nothing in nature that can't be taken as a sign of both mortality and invigoration.

By Anonym 13 Sep

Gretel Ehrlich

A tree is an aerial garden, a botanical migration from the sea, from those earliest plants, the seaweeds; it is a purchase on crumbled rock, on ground. The human, standing, is only a different upsweep and articulation of cells. How treelike we are, how human the tree.

By Anonym 13 Sep

Gretel Ehrlich

All that's known is this: there is no central processor, no single computer. Nothing that simple. Millions of neurons process information simultaneously and in parallel, not linearly, but the actual chemistry and electrical properties of that integrative process are still being mapped. Even so, it seems odd that during the evolution of brain circuitry and thinking, the ability to understand itself did not get wired in. Such built-in innocence seems like a terrible oversight.

By Anonym 13 Sep

Gretel Ehrlich

Autumn teaches us that fruition is also death; that ripeness is a form of decay. The willows, having stood for so long near water, begin to rust. Leaves are verbs that conjugate the seasons.

By Anonym 13 Sep

Gretel Ehrlich

If anything is endemic to Wyoming it is wind. This big room of space is swept out daily, leaving a bone yard of fossils, agates, and carcasses in every stage of decay. Though it was water that initially shaped the state, wind is the meticulous gardener, raising dust and pruning the sage.

By Anonym 13 Sep

Gretel Ehrlich

Am I like the optimist who, while falling ten stories from a building, says at each story, I'm all right so far?

By Anonym 15 Sep

Gretel Ehrlich

To rise above treeline is to go above thought, and after, the descent back into bird song, bog orchids, willows, and firs is to sink into the preliterate parts of ourselves.

By Anonym 14 Sep

Gretel Ehrlich

I understood why war zones are called 'theaters' because they frame a kind of play acting or, worse, deceit, that can stain a human life forever: the deceit of hate on hearsay - hating an enemy one doesn't know.

By Anonym 13 Sep

Gretel Ehrlich

A black-crowned night heron stood on an apron of wet sand, looking across the channel. The feather plume at the back of his head lifted in a faint breeze. Out there the channel churned its cyclonic eddies counterclockwise. Schools of anchovies, halibut, and sea bass came and went: silver flashes, small storms that well up from the inside of the sea but are short-lived, like lightning.

By Anonym 13 Sep

Gretel Ehrlich

I like to think of the landscape not as a fixed place but as a path that is unwinding before my eyes, under my feet. To see and know a place is a contemplative act. It means emptying our minds and letting what is there, in all its mulitplicity and endless variety, come in.

By Anonym 15 Sep

Gretel Ehrlich

To trace the history of a river . . . is to trace the history of the soul, the history of the mind descending and arising in the body.

By Anonym 15 Sep

Gretel Ehrlich

The retreat and disappearance of glaciers—there are only 160,000 left—means we're burning libraries and damaging the planet, possibly beyond repair. Bit by bit, glacier by glacier, rib by rib, we're living the Fall.

By Anonym 15 Sep

Gretel Ehrlich

Thirty years ago, my sister, Gale (so named because a gale hit Boston Harbor the night she was born), some friends and I stole a boat in the middle of the night and sailed it out of the Santa Barbara harbor. Suddenly we were becalmed and the current began pushing us toward the breakwall. With no running lights and no power, we were dead in the water. Out of that darkness a steel hull appeared: it was the local Coast Guard cutter. My father, stern-faced and displeased, stood in the bow.

By Anonym 15 Sep

Gretel Ehrlich

To trace the history of a river or a raindrop is also to trace the history of the soul, the history of the mind descending and arising in the body. In both, we constantly seek and stumble upon divinity, which like feeding the lake, and the spring becoming a waterfall, feeds, spills, falls, and feeds itself all over again.

By Anonym 13 Sep

Gretel Ehrlich

Fog rolled in like a form of sorrow. To live exiled from a place you have known intimately is to experience sensory deprivation. A wide-awake coma. ... The sea was a memory bank into which everything fell and was lost. I dove in but came out empty-handed.

By Anonym 13 Sep

Gretel Ehrlich

As fog moved to the mainland I heard a flock of birds fly over. They sounded like a dress rustling, a dress being unfastened and dropping to the floor. Fog came unpinned like hair. On the beach cliffs, great colonies of datura - jimson weed - with their white trumpet flowers, looked like brass bands.

By Anonym 19 Sep

Gretel Ehrlich

What shocks me so is the detachment with which we dispense destruction -- not just bombs, but blows to the head of the earth, to populations of insects, plants, and animals, and to one another with senseless betrayal -- and how the proposed solutions are always mechanistic, as if we could fabricate the health of the planet the way we make a new car.

By Anonym 13 Sep

Gretel Ehrlich

A tree is a thought, an obstruction stopping the flow of wind and light, trapping water, housing insects, birds, and animals, and breathing in and out. How treelike the human, how human the tree.

By Anonym 13 Sep

Gretel Ehrlich

History is not truth versus falsehoods, but a mixture of both, a mélange of tendencies, reactions, dreams, errors, and power plays. What's important is what we make of it; its moral use. By writing history, we can widen readers' thinking and deepen their sympathies in every direction. Perhaps history should show us not how to control the world, but how to enlarge, deepen, and discipline ourselves.

By Anonym 15 Sep

Gretel Ehrlich

What Flaubert refers to as the “mélancholies du voyage” is like the sadness I feel as one season departs and another arrives.

By Anonym 13 Sep

Gretel Ehrlich

I like big, open, spare landscapes. There's lots of room. Nobody bothers you... I feel as if I can think there.

By Anonym 15 Sep

Gretel Ehrlich

To long for love, to have experienced passion's deep pleasure, even once, is to understand the mercilessness of having a human body whose memory rides desire's back unanchored from season to season.

By Anonym 15 Sep

Gretel Ehrlich

We are often like rivers: careless and forceful, timid and dangerous, lucid and muddied, eddying, gleaming, still. Lovers, farmers, and artists have one thing in common, at least - a fear of 'dry spells,' dormant periods in which we do no blooming, internal droughts only the waters of imagination and psychic release can civilize.

By Anonym 15 Sep

Gretel Ehrlich

There was not one cause for our internment, but many - a deep-seated racial prejudice working on top of fear, distrust, and greed. So how is one to say exactly where history begins or ends? It is all slow oscillations, curves, and waves which take so long to reveal themselves ... like watching a tree grow.

By Anonym 13 Sep

Gretel Ehrlich

I designed furniture that pulled apart, folded, and broke down into neat stacks. Since arriving in California, I had moved four times and it looked as if I would move again. Was it the land running under my feet or my feet running over the land?

By Anonym 13 Sep

Gretel Ehrlich

Everything in nature invites us constantly to be what we are. We are often like rivers: careless and forceful, timid and dangerous, lucid and muddied, eddying, gleaming, still.

By Anonym 13 Sep

Gretel Ehrlich

Animals give us their constant, unjaded faces, and we burden them with our bodies and civilized ordeals.

By Anonym 13 Sep

Gretel Ehrlich

How odd it is that sewing is thought to be 'women's work' when surgeons, sailors, and cowboys sew too. Yet how many female thoracic surgeons are there? And if precision motor activities are thought to be performed better by women, why wouldn't they make better surgeons too?

By Anonym 13 Sep

Gretel Ehrlich

Gary Snyder's The Practice of the Wild is an exquisite, far-sighted articulation of what freedom, wildness, goodness, and grace mean, using the lessons of the planet to teach us how to live.

By Anonym 13 Sep

Gretel Ehrlich

All through autumn we hear a double voice: one says everything is ripe; the other says everything is dying. The paradox is exquisite. We feel what the Japanese call "aware"--an almost untranslatable word meaning something like "beauty tinged with sadness.

By Anonym 13 Sep

Gretel Ehrlich

Honesty is stronger medicine than sympathy, which may console but often conceals.

By Anonym 14 Sep

Gretel Ehrlich

Ritual which could entail a wedding or brushing one's teeth goes in the direction of life. Through it we reconcile our barbed solitude with rushing, irreducible conditions of life.

By Anonym 15 Sep

Gretel Ehrlich

To know something, then, we must be scrubbed raw, the fasting heart exposed.

By Anonym 14 Sep

Gretel Ehrlich

I thought: to be tough is to be fragile; to be tender is to be truly fierce.

By Anonym 15 Sep

Gretel Ehrlich

The toughness I was learning was not a martyred doggedness, a dumb heroism, but the art of accommodation. I thought: to be tough is to be fragile; to be tender is to be truly fierce.

By Anonym 13 Sep

Gretel Ehrlich

History is an illogical record. It hinges on nothing. It is a story that changes, and has accidents, and recovers with scars.

By Anonym 14 Sep

Gretel Ehrlich

It's no wonder human beings are so narcissistic. The way our ears are constructed, we can hear only what is right next to us or else the internal monologue inside.

By Anonym 15 Sep

Gretel Ehrlich

Walking is also an ambulation of mind.

By Anonym 14 Sep

Gretel Ehrlich

June marked the end of spring on California's central coast and the beginning of five months of dormancy that often erupted in fire. Mustard's yellow robes had long since turned red, then brown. Fog and sun mixed to create haze. The land had rusted. The mountains, once blue-hued with young oaks and blooming ceanosis, were tan and gray. I walked across the fallen blossoms of five yucca plants: only the bare poles of their stems remained to mark where their lights had shone the way.

By Anonym 13 Sep

Gretel Ehrlich

From the clayey soil of northern Wyoming is mined bentonite, which is used as filler in candy, gum, and lipstick. We Americans are great on fillers, as if what we have, what we are, is not enough. We have a cultural tendency toward denial, but being affluent, we strangle ourselves with what we can buy. We gave only to look at the houses we build to see how we build *against* space, the way we drink against pain and loneliness. We fill up space as if it were a pie shell, with things whose opacity further obstructs our ability to see what is already there.

By Anonym 15 Sep

Gretel Ehrlich

The truest art I would strive for in any work would be to give the page the same qualities as earth: weather would land on it harshly; light would elucidate the most difficult truths; wind would sweep away obtuse padding.

By Anonym 14 Sep

Gretel Ehrlich

Leaves are verbs that conjugate the seasons.

By Anonym 16 Sep

Gretel Ehrlich

Ice lies on water as far as the eye can see: scattered rhinestones, spiral arms of ice, ice walls and icebergs, and bits of ice that have splintered off larger pieces whose translucent edges are shaped like miniature whales.

By Anonym 13 Sep

Gretel Ehrlich

Between highway sounds I heard waves and thought how the curve of the coastline here had sheltered and nurtured live-born sharks, humans, and migrating whales. Here, at the edge of the continent, time and distance stopped; in the lull between sets of waves I could get a fresh start.