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written by "Smith, Logan Pearsall, 1865-1949"
... written now. For how can I now recapture the sadness, the self-pity of youth? Alas! What do the compensations of age after all amount to? What joy can the years bring half so sweet as the unhappiness they take away? [Pg 137] WELTANSCHAUUNG When, now and then, on a calm night I look up at the Stars, I reflect on the wonders of Creation, the unimportance of this Planet, and the possible existence of other worlds like ours. Sometimes it is the self-poised and passionless shining of those serene orbs which I think of; sometimes Kant's phrase comes into my mind about the majesty of the Starry Heavens and the Moral Law; or I remember Xenophanes gazing at the broad firmament, and crying, 'All is One!' and thus, in that sublime exclamation, enunciating for the first time the great doctrine of the Unity of Being. But these Thoughts are not my thoughts; they eddy through my mind like scraps of old paper, or withered leaves in the wind. What I really feel is the survival of a much more primitive mood—a view of the world which dates indeed from before the invention of language. It has never been put into literature; no poet has sung of it, no historian of human thought has so much as alluded to it; astronomers in their glazed observatories, with their eyes glued to the ends of telescopes, seem to have had no notion of it. But sometimes, far off at night, I have heard a dog howling it at the Moon. [Pg 138] THE ALIEN The older I grow, the more of an alien I find myself in the world; I cannot get used to it, cannot believe that it is real. I think I must have been made to live on some other Star. Or perhaps I am subject to hallucinations and hear voices; perhaps what I seem to see is delusion and doesn't happen; perhaps people don't really say the things I think I hear them saying. Ah, some one ought to have told me when I was young, I should certainly have been told of the horrible songs that are sung in drawing-roo...

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