More Aphorisms by Richard Krause

I first blogged about Richard Krause’s aphorisms back in 2009, noting that his “aphorisms often take the form of ‘proverbial play’; i.e. the core of the aphorism consists of a well-known proverbial saying or familiar expression, which the aphorism then tweaks through some ironic reversal or witty gloss.” This is still Mr. Krause’s modus operandi, luring readers into a psychological double take when the expected meaning of the immanent truism is suddenly upended, which leaves you invigorated if slightly uneasy about many of the sayings’ darker undertones…

 

You take people’s word and soon find that you’ve appropriated their whole vocabulary.

 

The fear of falling in love with yourself is that you will displace no one.

 

When you are washed up you never realize the extent of shoreline you have to yourself.

 

The faith you lose in people is almost enough to start a religion elsewhere.

 

Too many women around a man always camouflages his inability to make friends.

 

No matter how we talk a thing to death, death always has the last word.

 

What we want to hear determines almost everything people say.

 

You get carried away less often the older you get despite being closer to ending up on a stretcher.

 

We are always at the mercy of our inability to give it.

 

Murmurs often appear in those hearts that have no say.

 

That life is almost meaningless in its brevity naturally shortens the attention span.

 

Brilliance turns into glare when it loses its timing.

 

A person’s pride is accountable for almost all their loneliness.

 

What you love never leaves you, who you love always does.

 

You are all that is left of your childhood.

“The Mind Is a Metaphor” Database

Dave Lull alerts me to The Mind is a Metaphor database, “an evolving work of reference, an ever more interactive, more solidly constructed collection of mental metaphorics,” as it assembler and taxonomizer Brad Pasanek of the University of Virginia describes it. “This collection of eighteenth-century metaphors of mind serves as the basis for a scholarly study of the metaphors and root-images appealed to by the novelists, poets, dramatists, essayists, philosophers, belle-lettrists, preachers, and pamphleteers of the long eighteenth century. While the database does include metaphors from classical sources, from Shakespeare and Milton, from the King James Bible, and from more recent texts, it does not pretend to any depth or density of coverage in literature other than that of the British eighteenth century.” Next time you’re in search of an eighteenth-century metaphor, browse on by here…

 

A dry gleam of light is the wisest and best soul. —Heraklitus

 

When a human embryo is seven weeks old, / the brain shines through its forehead, a cloud / of light, belly-deep and breathing, / the whole, luminous mass cabled and alone. —Sam Witt

 

Curiosity is the thirst of the soul; it inflames and torments us, and makes us taste every thing with joy, however otherwise insipid, by which it may be quenched. —Samuel Johnson

 

A beauteous face may be the index of a beauteous mind. —James Miller