Apr 23, 2010

Smoke Gets In Your Eyes.



"We cross our bridges when we come to them and burn them behind us, with nothing to show for our progress except a memory of the smell of smoke, and a presumption that once our eyes watered."

-- Tom Stoppard

2 comments:

writersblock501 said...

I'm contemplating the meaning of that right now... Yes, "cross our bridges," we must or we'll never move forward. "Burn them behind us" is sometimes an occurrence but not necessarily true or even recommended. We will not see where we came from, however it does allow us not to back-track. The "memory of the smell of smoke, and a presumption that once our eyes watered" however does show that it is alright to burn the bridges as we still have the memory etched in our senses, physically and spiritually. That sixth sense, gut intuition that you've been in this spot before allows you to learn from your history and not repeat unnecessary things.
Ok, I think I get it now.

PM Summer said...

Interesting, and perhaps a more positive message than (or even Mr. Stoppard) finds there, but even authors miss what they are saying sometimes.

We burn bridges for two reasons: either to prevent our return, or to prevent something from following us. To have a memory of smelling smoke coupled with a presumption of tears speaks to me of the self-delusion of our actions, the actions themselves and their consequences.

Nostalgia and sentimentality are powerful anecdotes to conscience and reality. Or so it seems.