For authorities whose hopes are shaped by mercenaries? Writers entrapped by teatime fame and by commuters' comforts? Not for these the paper nautilus constructs her thin glass shell. Giving her perishable souvenir of hope, a dull white outside and smooth- edged inner surface glossy as the sea, the watchful maker of it guards it day and night; she scarcely eats until the eggs are hatched. Buried eight-fold in her eight arms, for she is in a sense a devil- fish, her glass ram'shorn-cradled freight is hid but is not crushed; as Hercules, bitten by a crab loyal to the hydra, was hindered to succeed, the intensively watched eggs coming from the shell free it when they are freed,— leaving its wasp-nest flaws of white on white, and close- laid Ionic chiton-folds like the lines in the mane of a Parthenon horse, round which the arms had wound themselves as if they knew love is the only fortress strong enough to trust to.
Marianne Moore - 1887-1972
My father used to say, "Superior people never make long visits, have to be shown Longfellow's grave or the glass flowers at Harvard. Self-reliant like the cat— that takes its prey to privacy, the mouse's limp tail hanging like a shoelace from its mouth— they sometimes enjoy solitude, and can be robbed of speech by speech which has delighted them. The deepest feeling always shows itself in silence; not in silence, but restraint." Nor was he insincere in saying, "Make my house your inn." Inns are not residences.