Friday, December 11, 2020

1,001 Nights: 17


"The Overcoat" by Nikolai Gogol (story)

A minor clerk works all day, saves little, his overcoat is wearing out over the years, the weather is harsh and wintry, and the clerk must get a new overcoat. He saves up a lot of money and pays an embroider to sew one from whole cloth. The office celebrates. But then through a series of unfortunate circumstances, he has the overcoat nicked from him. One of the best stories of all time.

"The Mower to the Glow-Worms" by Andrew Marvell (poem)

A gardener praises the glow-worms for guiding the way. Alas, the glow-worms cannot show this gardener his way. He is lost in his love for Julianna.

"Circles" by Ralph Waldo Emerson (essay)

One of the greatest essays of all time. Poetic, obscure, challenging. Emerson uses circles as a metaphor for our perception of life. As soon as one circle is drawn, another is drawn around it, and another circle around it, and then we realize that the march of progress is never finished, nothing is complete, every circle can be circumscribed by another circle.

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