Wednesday, December 11, 2019 Text is available under the CC BY-SA 3.0 licence.

Simon Conway Morris

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The way Conway Morris goes about biting the hand that once fed him would make a shoal of piranha seem decorous.
Richard Fortey
London Review of Books: Vol. 20, No.19: "Shock Lobsters"

Simon Conway Morris

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I am puzzled that Conway Morris apparently doesn't grasp the equally strong (and inevitable) personal preferences embedded in his own view of life.

Simon Conway Morris

In the flush of the hot June prime,
O'ersleek flood-tides afire,
I hear him hurry the chime
To the bidding of checked Desire;
Till the sweated ringers tire
And the wild bob-majors die.
Could I wait for my turn in the godly choir?
(Shoal! 'Ware shoal!) Not I!

Rudyard Kipling

I perceive and bless God for it, that my Lady Conway was my Lady Conway to her last Breath; the greatest Example of Patience and Presence of Mind, in highest Extremities of Pain and Affliction, that we shall easily meet with: Scarce any thing to be found like her since the Primitive times of the Church.

Anne Conway

It would be more decorous not to live. To live is not decorous,
Says he who after many years
Returned to the city of his youth. There was no one left
Of those who once walked these streets
And now they had nothing, except his eyes.
Stumbling, he walked and looked, instead of them,
On the light they had loved, on the lilacs again in bloom.

Czeslaw Milosz

I cannot help thinking that it does not matter what goes into the Clarion this week, because William Morris is dead. And what socialist will care for any other news this week, beyond that one sad fact? ...
William Morris was our best man; and he is dead. It is true that much of his work still lives, and will live. But we have lost him, and, great as was his work, he himself was greater. Many a man of genius is dwarfed by his creations. We could all name men whose personalities seem unworthy of their own words and actions; men who resemble mean jars filled with honey, or foul lamps emitting brilliant beams. Morris was of a nobler kind. He was better than his best. Though his words fell like sword strokes, one always felt that the warrior was stronger than the sword. For Morris was not only a genius, he was a man. Strike at him where you would, he rang true. ... His face was as honest as a lion's and you accepted his word as you accept a date from the almanac. This is a censorious world, and as a rule, let a man be chaste as ice, pure as snow, he shall not escape calumny. Yet I have never heard a single word of detraction or dislike spoken of William Morris. Nor is there a Socialist to-day in England but will feel that he has lost a friend.
He was our best man. We cannot spare him; we cannot replace him. In all England there lives no braver, kinder, honester, cleverer, heartier man than William Morris. He is dead, and we cannot help feeling for a while that nothing else matters.

William Morris
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