When Walser first put on his make-up, he looked in the mirror and did not recognise himself ... he experienced the freedom that lies behind the mask, within dissimulation.
(Angela Carter (1940-1992), British postmodern novelist. repr. Penguin. Nights at the Circus, part 2, ch. 1, Chatto & Windus (1984).
The hero contemplates his face shortly after applying clown makeup.)
It required some rudeness to disturb with our boat the mirror-like surface of the water, in which every twig and blade of grass was so faithfully reflected; too faithfully indeed for art to imitate, for only Nature may exaggerate herself.
(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. 47, Houghton Mifflin (1906).)
Modern man likes to pretend that his thinking is wide-awake. But this wide-awake thinking has led us into the mazes of a nightmare in which the torture chambers are endlessly repeated in the mirrors of reason.
(Octavio Paz (b. 1914), Mexican poet, essayist. The Labyrinth of Solitude, ch. 9 (1950, trans. 1961).)