“The path of its departure still is free.” Mutability.

This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is bernie-wrightson-bernie-wrightson-mary-wollstonecraft-shelleys-frankenstein-unused-illustration-original-art-c..jpg
Bernie Wrightson (American, 1948–2017)
Bernie Wrightson Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley’s Frankenstein Unused Illustration Original Art (c. 1975), ca. 1975

We lived in a little art loft over a quaint bookstore up town Whittier.  Ames is the name of the bookstore. A funny fellow with a beard owned the place. To get away from the overwhelming nature of the business I was involved with: I found this cave in the city. A new world opened to me at Ames. Books came alive and one of the most influential books I found there is the classic story, Frankenstein Or The Modern Prometheus. Mary W. Shelley’s novel inspires me on so many levels and I cannot thank her enough.

This is a quote for the day. This quote speaks of life and freedom resonates there. I love the reflective and subjective nature of her book. I recommend this gem to everyone: read it and life will not be the same…if you have read it already, “so it goes!”

If our impulses were confined to hunger, thirst, and desire, we might be nearly free; but now we are moved by every wind that blows, and a chance word or scene can surprisingly mean a great preciousness to us.

I think Percy Bysshe Shelley wrote The Modern Prometheus. Or maybe Mary and Percy wrote the book together. Percy’s poem Mutability was written before the novel which seems very revealing to me.


“We rest; a dream has power to poison sleep.

We rise; one wandering through pollutes the day.

We feel, conceive, or reason; laugh or weep,

Embrace fond woe, or cast our cares away;

It is the same: for, be it joy or sorrow,

The path of its departure still is free.

Man’s yesterday may ne’er be like his morrow;

Nought may endure but mutability!”

Page 99: Chapter X

Frankenstein; or, The Modern Prometheus

Mary Shelley



Mutability

We are as clouds that veil the midnight moon;
How restlessly they speed, and gleam, and quiver,
Streaking the darkness radiantly!–yet soon
Night closes round, and they are lost forever:

Or like forgotten lyres, whose dissonant strings
Give various response to each varying blast,
To whose frail frame no second motion brings
One mood or modulation like the last.

We rest.–A dream has power to poison sleep;
We rise.–One wandering thought pollutes the day;
We feel, conceive or reason, laugh or weep;
Embrace fond woe, or cast our cares away:

It is the same!–For, be it joy or sorrow,
The path of its departure still is free:
Man’s yesterday may ne’er be like his morrow;
Nought may endure but Mutability.

Percy Bysshe Shelley