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I believe that the base of the heavenly ladder, upon which we seek to ascend into higher regions, has to be fastened to our life, so that everyone may be able to follow. If then, climbing steadily higher and higher, we find ourselves in a fantastic, magical world, then we will recognize that this realm also belongs in our life; that it indeed may be the most wonderful, the most magnificent part.
–E.T.A. Hoffmann , Die Serapions-Brüder (1819) in: Gesammelte Werke vol. 1, p. 599 (Winkler ed. 1963)(S.H. transl.)
More from Scott Horton:
Six Questions — October 18, 2014, 8:00 pm
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A man sued Pennsylvania state police who detained him for 29 days when they mistook his homemade soap for cocaine.
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“Shelby is waiting for something. He himself does not know what it is. When it comes he will either go back into the world from which he came, or sink out of sight in the morass of alcoholism or despair that has engulfed other vagrants.”