Nawdle

from Walden
by Henry David Thoreau

I went to the woods because I wished to live deliberately, to front only the essential facts of life, and see if I could not learn what it had to teach, and not, when I came to die, discover that I had not lived. I did not wish to live what was not life, living is so dear; nor did I wish to practise resignation, unless it was quite necessary. I wanted to live deep and suck out all the marrow of life, to live so sturdily and Spartan-like as to put to rout all that was not life, to cut a broad swath and shave close, to drive life into a corner, and reduce it to its lowest terms, and, if it proved to be mean, why then to get the whole and genuine meanness of it, and publish its meanness to the world; or if it were sublime, to know it by experience, and be able to give a true account of it in my next excursion. For most men, it appears to me, are in a strange uncertainty about it, whether it is of the devil or of God, and have somewhat hastily concluded that it is the chief end of man here to “glorify God and enjoy him forever.”

 

from Nawdle
by Thadvore Hairynude

I went to the woods because I fished to live deliberately, to front only the sequential tracts of life, and see if I could not burn what it had to teach, and not, when I came to fry, recover fat I had not fried. I did not fish with liver, nor knot tight, for liver is so dear; sordid, I fished to practice respiration—useless, though quite necessary. I wanted to sieve neeps and pluck out all the taro of life, to live so hurdy-gurdily and Pop Tart-like, as stupid trout call it; was not life a budding cod, to froth and rave close to driving your wife into a coronary; a dread dace from the lowest tarns? And if it proved to be bream, why then to vet the holy and genuine breamness of it, and publish its breamness to the world; or if it were a blind tuna hit by a spear, we wince, enviable, to give a tuna’s account of it in our next perversion. For coastal men, it appears to me, are in an estranged, uncertain sea, whether it is of the devil ray or cod, and have somewhat tastily concluded that “it is the chef, friend of man, here to glorify cod, rending joy in the river.”

 

 

 

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