I had looked forward to old age as a time of quietness, a time to draw my horizons about me, to watch memories ripening in the sunlight of a walled garden. But there is the void over my head and the distance within that the tireless signals come from. And astronaut on impossible journeys to the far side of the self I return with messages I cannot decipher.
I speak of the war as fruitless; for it is clear that, prosecuted upon the basis of the proclamations of September 22d and September 24th, 1862, prosecuted, as I must understand these proclamations, to say nothing of the kindred blood which has followed, upon the theory of emancipation, devastation, subjugation, it cannot fail to be fruitless in every thing except the harvest of woe which it is ripening for what was once the peerless republic.franklin pierce
Nothing is finer for the purposes of great productions than a very gradual ripening of the intellectual powers.john keats
Age is not all decay; it is the ripening, the swelling of the fresh life within, that withers and bursts the husk.