PES Friday: This Week’s Recommended Reads – 2/16/2018

Poem

In Memory of Major Robert Gregory by W. B. Yeats

A touching eulogy about a man whose life was cut short much too soon in World War I.

Memorable stanza:

Some burn damp faggots, others may consume
The entire combustible World in one small room
As though dried straw, and if we turn about,
The bare chimney is gone black out
Because the work had finished in that flare.
Soldier, scholar, horseman, he,
As ’twere all life’s epitome.
What made us dream that he could comb grey hair?

Essay

Of Envy by Sir Francis Bacon

Sir Francis is witty, erudite, and was a do-it-aller. I’ve read 10 of 59 essays so far and he has something enlightening to say in each. I’m beginning to feel that at least half of the popular psychology books I’ve read are rooted in some of the material I’ve found here. Of Envy was this week’s favorite.  Here are some quotes which struck a chord:

A man that hath no virtue himself, ever envieth virtue in others.

whoso is out of hope to attain to another’s virtue, will seek to come at even hand by depressing another’s fortune.
it is like a deceit of the eye, that when others come on they think themselves go back.
he that cannot possibly mend his own case will do what he can to impair another.
envy is as the sunbeams, that beat hotter upon a bank or steep rising ground, than upon a flat. And for the same reason those that are advanced by degrees are less envied than those that are advanced suddenly and per saltum [at a bound].
It is also the vilest affection, and the most depraved; for which cause it is the proper attribute of the devil, who is called the envious man, that soweth tares amongst the wheat by night; as it always cometh to pass, that envy worketh subtilly, and in the dark, and to the prejudice of good things, such as is the wheat.

Short Story

Full Service by Steven G. Jackson from It’s All in the Story 

This is a story from an anthology put out last year by the Southern California Writer’s Association. Gas station attendants working at an isolated gas station on a stretch of California’s Mojave Desert take the notion of full service to a new level. A wonderfully fun story. Steven’s a great writer and I look forward to checking out his novel-length work.

Happy Friday!

-Phillip

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