W. H. Auden:

We would rather be ruined than changed.

We would rather die in our dread

Than climb the cross of the present

And let our illusions die.

John Steinbeck:

Men do change, and change comes like the stealthy perfume of wildflowers hidden in the grass. Change may be announced by a small ache, so that you think you’re catching cold. Or you may feel a faint disgust for something you loved yesterday. It may even take the form of a hunger that peanuts will not satisfy. Isn’t overeating said to be one of the strongest symptoms of discontent? And isn’t discontent the lever of change?

Sources: John Steinbeck’s Sweet Thursday (p. 18) and W. H. Auden’s Age of Anxiety poem.


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