There are, indeed, men whose souls are like …

28 Feb

There are, indeed, men whose souls are like the sea. Those billows, that ebb and flood, that inexorable going and coming, that noise of all the winds, that blackness and that translucency, that vegetation peculiar to the deep, that democracy of clouds in full hurricane, those eagles flecked with foam, those wonderful star-risings reflected in mysterious agitation by millions of luminous wave-tops, – confused heads of the multitudinous sea, – the errant lightnings which seem to watch, those prodigious sobbings, those half-seen monsters, those nights of darkness broken by howlings, those furies, those frenzies, those torments, those rocks, those shipwrecks, those fleets crushing each other, mingling their human thunders with the divine thunders and staining the sea with blood; then that charm, that mildness, those festivals, those gay white sails, those fishing-boats, those songs amid the uproar, those shining ports, those mists rising from the shore, those cities at the horizon`s edge, that deep blue of sky and water, that useful asperity, that bitter savor which keeps the world wholesome, that harsh salt without which all would putrefy; those wraths and those appeasements, that all in one, the unforeseen amid the changeless, the vast marvel of inexhaustibly varied monotony, that smoothness after an upheaval, those hells and those heavens of the unfathomed, infinite, ever-moving deep, – all this may exist in a mind and then that mind is called genius, and you have Eschylus, you have Isaiah, you have Juvenal, you have Dante, you have Michael Angelo, you have Shakespeare; and it is all one whether you look at these souls or at the sea.

William Shakespeare by Victor Hugo

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