Bea, your web site is spectacular. I love the colors, the approach, the design, the words.

Nancy

The great amulet

The great amulet

What a wonderful tribute to love. Why not tell someone that you love them, and enjoy love's protective amulet?And if you're into gardening, let this inspire you to get out your digging gear and start making 'the world a garden'.  (I just planted several hundred...

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Of knee-deep snow and sky-deep silence

Of knee-deep snow and sky-deep silence

I found this a lovely echo, above and below; a soft-silencing deep blanket of snow on the ground reverberating in a boundless, soundless sky-deep silence overhead. From the first book in a trilogy by the Hungarian writer Lajos Zilahy, covering the life and fate of...

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Just visiting

Just visiting

In 1946 John Steinbeck, with his friend the photographer Robert Capa, spent a month in the Soviet Union, including the war-ravaged city of Stalingrad. Here Steinbeck describes a touching encounter with a little boy for whom the memory of his lost father was clearly...

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A slow creation

A slow creation

A marvelously succinct summary of the vast universe that is the evolution of a single human being, with all its subtleties and complexities.'A human being in this aged nation of ours is a very wonderful whole, the slow creation of long interchanging influences.'See...

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The banner of beauty

The banner of beauty

This is one of those wonder-lines which resonate without your necessarily quite understanding them. David Esterly, whose attunement to beauty was nano-fine, probably did. I enjoy the resonance despite the incomprehension and was reassured to find that even someone as...

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They could have danced all night

They could have danced all night

In 1946 John Steinbeck and the photographer Robert Capa spent a month travelling in the Soviet Union. Here they find themselves in the Ukraine, knocked sideways by the strength and joie de vivre of the farm girls. After another long day of hard physical work in the...

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Summer radiance whatever the weather

Summer radiance whatever the weather

Having sent a new year card to a friend, I learned from her partner that she passed away last year. He sent me his in memoriam with a rich array of photos. Exactly as I remembered her, vivacious and luminous, beautiful and strong. The line quoted here seemed a...

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Stake your life, again, in what you dream

Stake your life, again, in what you dream

Isn't this as good a moment as any to stake your life again in what you dream? The start of a new year, a new decade and a once-every-101-years double-digit (101 years since the last one, in 1919, and 101 years until the next, 2121).And if you don't have ready access...

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A weight of glory

A weight of glory

 Merry Christmas if you celebrate it, and if you don't, may you in any case enjoy bright stars and their weight of glory. The message of the day is an ancient one: peace on earth and goodwill to all men.'The stars shone so brightly that they made a weight of glory in...

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Warm blood and solid bones

Warm blood and solid bones

Zorba is one of the great Nuannaarpoqians of the world, running the gamut from Authentic to Zestful. Here is his uncomplicated capacity to feel joy and suffering in equal measure. I also like the phrase 'fine sieve of metaphysics', though not if it impedes rather than...

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Happiness and exhilaration

Happiness and exhilaration

A simple response to what could be taken as a complex question. Send me your own definitions. From the magnificent book which inspired this website - enjoy our quote studded mosaic review. 'Knud Rasmussen, an arctic traveler, once asked an Eskimo man about happiness,...

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Happiness in triplicate

Happiness in triplicate

Here a young woman is three times happy, including the awareness of her happiness and its cause. May you enjoy similar moments of triple whammy happiness! 'She was happy, she knew she was happy, and knew she ought to be happy.'    Source: Jane Austen, Emma,...

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Many legended-island

Many legended-island

Are those legends still alive or did they die with the war, or with the people who told them?  And what if we made our own mental - or real - 'many-legended island' to walk in? Or created legends for the real world? If you have a memory or idea of a 'many-legended...

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Weaving into vivid joys

Weaving into vivid joys

The spirit of nuannaarpoq includes the capacity for feeling joy vividly, regardless of the passing of years, or as Luiz puts it, the 'accumulation of youth'. May your joys remain vivid, wherever you are in life. '... that wove itself into my joys when joys were...

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To be what we are

To be what we are

Another interesting take on authenticity. I like Thoreau's hopeful assumption that being what we are leans towards worthy and nobler qualities.And curious about that invitation - what or who does he believe is inviting us to be ourselves?'We are constantly invited to...

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Master of whirlpools

Master of whirlpools

I loved this entrancing description of joyous and playful mastery. Tarka is a splendid character depicted after months of close observation of his kind, by a man disaffected with humanity following the horrors of the First World War. Although often hunted, the animal...

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The chief element of happiness

The chief element of happiness

  How contemporary this sounds, and yet it is a five-hundred year old classic. Erasmus reaching down the centuries by speaking lightly in the voice of a woman and, what is more, a woman self-styled as the goddess of folly. He manages to imbue her with such witty...

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The lilt of desire

The lilt of desire

What an eloquent depiction of a perfect moment, suspended in the lilt of its desire. Think of similar moments you have experienced, or places which can induce them in you. Then fly there in your mind for a moment. Or an hour. For me such places are always either...

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Expanding confidence

Expanding confidence

I liked the implication that Dante's confidence expands by the agency of another, in this case likened to the sun unfolding a rose. How about that as a metaphor for being a mentor to someone?'My confidence expands just as the sunUnfolds the rose into its fullest...

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Of sleep, sky and an infinite future

Of sleep, sky and an infinite future

From Seethaler's subtle, sensitive and slender novel on a whole life (you can interpret the title either way).Here he describes the easy sleep of the protagonist, adaptable to many places including the open air. I liked the lack of fretful concern for the future, and...

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A hamper of friendship

A hamper of friendship

Something magical about hampers and other gifts of food and drink. I could live without the arack, but love the cheese, pomegranates, and raisin and fig selection, a perfect picnic snack. See also Pliny the Younger on a gift of dates.'A little later he sent us two...

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Island pebbles

Island pebbles

As a committed pebble picker, I was delighted to read that Keats also thought to bend down and scoop up a few when he travelled. Here he brings them back from his trip to Scotland, as a memento for his sister.On the metaphorical benefits of holding a pebble in your...

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Young and younger

Young and younger

A wonderful, playful evocation of youth remembered, in heaps and piles, years, decades and even centuries later. But keep in mind one definition of age; that of 'accumulated youth'. There, don't you feel younger already? 'I was very young in those days, exceedingly...

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Love of the earth

Love of the earth

If ever we needed to remember our love of the earth, it is now. I like George Eliot's hypothesis that our love of it is anchored in our childhood experience of it. Get your kids - or yourselves - down to the park or into the country, and start kicking up the autumn...

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Of longing and living

Of longing and living

An unusual take on the link between longing and being fully alive. Perhaps the Dalai Lama would question its validity, but I believe he would show compassion towards its all too human weakness. And I don't see this view as being contrary to an all-pervasive sense of...

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In praise of later love

In praise of later love

George Eliot noticed a bias in poets' treatment of love, a tendency to say many fine things about its first experience, and far fewer about those that happen later in life. I confess to having a special interest in sharing this quotation on this day, being the joyous...

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The resilience of the gardener

The resilience of the gardener

A beautiful image of resilience despite decades of war and years of drought: a green, tended and elaborate garden. Rory Stewart is humbled by this and other signs of precious normality. 'Despite twenty-four years of war and four years of drought, the grass was green...

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Of sweet sleep

Of sweet sleep

Keat's evocation of perfect sleep is particularly moving considering he was soon robbed of health and 'quiet breathing' by the assault of tuberculosis.  He had also nursed his mother and younger brother through it, losing both of them to its wreckage, and so no doubt...

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Still as a stone

Still as a stone

Try it, next time you have a quiet moment. Sit, if you will, maybe on a stone, and hold a smaller one in your hand, as a talisman for the history of man. Sense its weight and form. 'You can sit for a long time with the history of man like a stone in your hand. The...

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The joy of peace

The joy of peace

I believe we have a tendency to take peace for granted, though every day of it is a gift. Here Iris Origo captures the exuberance they felt when the Second World War came to an end. She was married to an Italian and kept a diary as the frontlines moved to and fro...

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Sleeping beauty

Sleeping beauty

In the winter of 2004-2005 seven inches of rain fell in Death Valley, a once in generations weather event. When spring came the floor of the valley was a carpet of flowers. It had been sleeping, not dead. I was struck by this account of a rare deluge in a place...

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Gifts from strangers

Gifts from strangers

I am curious and charmed by the rituals and choices of gift-giving, particularly when done with kindness and generosity rather than from obligation. Here Rory Stewart lists the humble but thoughtful gifts given to him on his walk across Afghanistan, for his family in...

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Opening the gate

Opening the gate

This is a touching idea, installing a gate around your home not to exclude people, but rather to hold it open for them, making them feel all the more welcome. From a slender, quiet, moving novel. 'Right at the end he erected a low fence around his new home and put in...

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A man on a carpet

A man on a carpet

Rory Stewart walked long stretches of several countries, including Pakistan, Iran and Afghanistan. He was therefore struck by the absence of people when he did a sea-to-sea hike along Hadrian's Wall.I love the apparently not uncommon sight of men on carpets in Iranian...

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Of youth and memory

Of youth and memory

Memory is a key theme of nuannaarpoq.com, as somehow it came to the surface as a principal element of a life well lived when I was considering what to highlight. Here Mark Twain embellishes the concept with his usual wit and verve.'When I was younger I could remember...

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Walks as miracles

Walks as miracles

Rory Stewart put this belief to the test in some mammoth walks, one across several countries including Pakistan, Iran, Turkey and Afghanistan, and one weaving the length of Hadrian's Wall. Walking does seem to have a near miraculous capacity to ease stress and worry,...

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Of jam and idleness

Of jam and idleness

Maggie Tulliver is an adorable and vulnerable child, full of dreams, emotions and ideas, both affectionate and affection-craving. Here she loses herself in the freedom and joy of seesawing on a tree branch, with nothing in mind but 'a vague sense of jam and idleness'....

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Nuannaarpoq Interviews – Question 003

Nuannaarpoq Interviews – Question 003

‘If you had an opportunity to put a question to Socrates what would it be?’ This is a quotation from Lawrence Durrell's enchanting exploration of the island of Corfu, Prospero's Cell. I have been pondering it for months and decided it was a good question to include in...

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I don’t know when I have felt so happy

I don’t know when I have felt so happy

Those spectacular occasions when it all conspires in your favour, when the people, the place and the moment are perfect. And those 'black, liquid, effortless birds'!  The boat, too, 'horse-like in her strength'.Send me descriptions of such moments now and...

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Not now, but soon

Not now, but soon

One of the sweetest sounds of spring is a blossom-bursting tree humming with a hundred bees. And after the blossoms fall and the bees move to the next awakening, you just wait for the fruit to grow and fall.  Not now, but soon, with that 'somehow, some day' carrying...

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Unwritten knowledge

Unwritten knowledge

Our relationship with landscape fascinates me, particularly when it manifests in people who have a deep knowledge and love of a particular place, whether from an agricultural, historical, geological or other angle. This quotation is from a love letter to a landscape...

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Nothing more marvelous

Nothing more marvelous

A delicious dinner with friends, the table noise, also the talk noise. In our case, these are mostly at home, so we are the waiters filling the glasses and plates. The summer is coming and if it is kind, we can hold most of those dinners in the garden, accompanied by...

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Lightening hours

Lightening hours

Isn't this a signal of perfect companionship, whether as friends, family or lovers? That hours pass like lightening? 'We started off in the direction of the village. The hours among the rocks had passed as time passes between lovers, like lightening.'   Source:...

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Treasured, threaded moments

Treasured, threaded moments

Arundhati Roy's heart-rending novel captures moments of intense sweetness, all the more precious for their rarity. Here the two children make of them a scant necklace of joy-beads. 'Moments like these, the twins treasured and threaded like precious beads on a...

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