We plucked down all His altars, left not oneSave where, perchance (and ah, the joy was fleet),We laid our garlands in the sunAt the white Sea-born's feet.
In the sixties, the recycling of pop culture turning it into Pop art and camp had its own satirical zest. Now we're into a different kind of recycling. Moviemakers give movies of the past an authority that those movies didn't have; they inflate images that may never have compelled belief, images that were no more than shorthand gestures and they use them not as larger-than-life jokes but as altars.Pauline Kael
Blood will stream over Europe until the nations become aware of the frightful madness which drives them in circles. And then, struck by celestial music and made gentle, they approach their former altars all together, hear about the works of peace, and hold a great celebration of peace with fervent tears before the smoking altars.novalis
Of all the gods , Death only craves not gifts : Nor sacrifice , nor yet drink-offering poured Avails; no altars hath he, nor is soothed By hymns of praise . From him alone of all The powers of heaven Persuasion holds aloof.Frag. 146 (trans. by Plumptre), reported in Bartlett's Familiar Quotations, 10th ed. (1919)
You who build these altars now to sacrifice these children , you must not do it anymore. A scheme is not a vision and you never have been tempted by a demon or a god .Leonard Cohen, in "Story of Isaac" on Songs from a Room (1969).
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