In tremendous extremities human souls are like drowning men; well enough they know they are in peril; well enough they know the causes of that peril;Mnevertheless, the sea is the sea, and these drowning men do drown.
(Herman Melville (1819-1891), U.S. author. Pierre (1852), bk. XXII, The Writings of Herman Melville, vol. 7, eds. Harrison Hayford, Hershel Parker, and G. Thomas Tanselle (1971).)
To be rich is to have a ticket of admission to the masterworks and chief men of each race. It is to have the sea, by voyaging; to visit the mountains, Niagara, the Nile, the desert, Rome, Paris, Constantinople: to see galleries, libraries, arsenals, manufactories.
(Ralph Waldo Emerson (1803-1882), U.S. essayist, poet, philosopher. "Wealth," The Conduct of Life (1860).)
The most advanced nations are always those who navigate the most. The power which the sea requires in the sailor makes a man of him very fast, and the change of shores and population clears his head of much nonsense of his wigwam.
(Ralph Waldo Emerson (1803-1882), U.S. essayist, poet, philosopher. "Civilization," Society and Solitude (1870).)
It is the time we have now, and all our wasted time sinks into the sea and is swallowed up without a trace. The past is dust and ashes, and this incommensurably wide way leads to the pragmatic and kinetic future.
(John Ashbery (b. 1927), U.S. poet, critic. "The System.")
The fact that Romans once inhabited her reflects no little dignity on Nature herself; that from some particular hill the Roman once looked out on the sea.
(Henry David Thoreau (1817-1862), U.S. philosopher, author, naturalist. A Week on the Concord and Merrimack Rivers (1849), in The Writings of Henry David Thoreau, vol. 1, p. 264, Houghton Mifflin (1906).)