Diane Vogel Ferri is a teacher, poet and writer. Her essays have been published in Scene Magazine, Cleveland Christmas Memories, Raven’s Perch, and by Cleveland State University among others. Her poems can be found in numerous journals. Her chapbook, Liquid Rubies, was published by Pudding House. The Volume of Our Incongruity was published by Finishing Line Press. Diane’s essay, “I Will Sing for You” was featured at the Cleveland Humanities Fest in 2018. Her novel, The Desire Path can be found on Amazon. She is a graduate of Kent State University and holds an M.Ed from Cleveland State University.

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Written at Walden Pond

One of my lofty goals this summer is to read some classic books that either I have never read or read many moons ago in high school. I began with "Walden" by Henry David Thoreau. What strikes me the most about Thoreau's observations is that so many of them are completely relevant 150 years later. Get this one on fashion and trends:
The childish and savage taste of men and women for new patterns keeps how many shaking and squinting through kaleidoscopes that they may discover the particular figure which this generation requires day to-day. The manufacturers have learned that this taste is merely whimsical. Of course, two patterns which differ only by a few threads more or less of a particular color, the one will be sold readily;the other lie on the shelf, though it frequently happens that after the lapse of a season the latter becomes the most fashionable. Comparatively, tattooing is not the hideous custom which it is called. It is not barbarous merely because the printing is skin-deep and unalterable.

Books are the treasured wealth of the world and the fit inheritance of generations and nations. Books, the oldest and the best, stand naturally and rightfully on the shelves of every cottage. They have no cause of their own to plead, but while they enlighten and sustain the reader his common sense will not refuse them. (I'm reading something published in 1854, am I not?)

The life which men praise and regard as successful is but one kind. why should we exaggerate any one kind at the expense of the others?




1 comment:

Jan said...

My BA was in English. I keep thinking that I need to re-read all those classics that somehow seemed wasted on me when I was so young, though I did not realize it then. Glad you are reading heavier things than the Harry Potter series, which I read earlier this month.