You do not seem to realize that beauty is a liability ratherthanan asset - that in view of the fact that spirit creates formwe are justified in supposingthat you must have brains. For you, a symbol of theunit, stiff and sharp,conscious of surpassing by dint of native superiority andliking for everythingself-dependent, anything anambitious civilization might produce: for you, unaided, toattempt through sheerreserve, to confuse presumptions resulting fromobservation, is idle. You cannot make usthink you a delightful happen-so. But rose, if you arebrilliant, itis not because your petals are the without-which-nothingof pre-eminence. Would you not, minusthorns, be a what-is-this, a mereperculiarity? They are not proof against a worm, theelements, or mildew;but what about the predatory hand? What is brilliancewithout co-ordination? Guarding theinfinitesimal pieces of your mind, compelling audience tothe remark that it is better to be forgotten than to be re-membered too violently,your thorns are the best part of you.

You do not seem to realize that beauty is a...
Marianne Moore

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