Like children, the elders are a burden. But unlike children, they offer no hope or promise. They are a weight and an encumbrance and a mirror of our own mortality. It takes a person of great heart to see past this fact and to see the wisdom the elders have to offer, and so serve them out of gratitude for the life they have passed on to us.
(Kent Nerburn (20th century), U.S. theologian and author. Letters to My Son, ch. 26 (1994).)
It is, after all, very interesting that sound can reflect like water, like a mirror. And notice that Vinteuil's phrase only shows me that to which I did not pay attention at the time. Of my worries, of my loves at that time, it does not recall a thing, it has made the exchange.
(Marcel Proust (1871-1922), French novelist. Nouvelle Revue Française (1918). Remembrance of Things Past, vol. II, Within a Budding Grove, p. 534, Pléiade (1954).
Vinteuil's phrase is a favorite piece of music of Swann's...)