“And then this element in which we habitually move … this sunshine, here’s another thing … The chance fashion in which its rays fall, the way it moves, infiltrates … becomes part of the earth’s fabric—who will ever paint that? Who will ever tell that story? The physical history of the earth, its psychology … Perhaps the earth’s diffused morality represents the effort it’s making to return to its solar origin. Therein lies its idea of God, its feeling, its dream of God. Everywhere a ray is knocking on some dark door … “
“As they rode up to the door, a man came out, bare-headed, and they saw to their surprise that he was not a Mexican, but an American, of a very unprepossessing type. He spoke to them in some drawling dialect they could scarcely understand and asked if they wanted to stay the night. During the few words they exchanged with him Father Latour felt a growing reluctance to remain even for a few hours under the roof of this ugly, evil-looking fellow. He was tall, gaunt and ill-formed, with a snake-like neck, terminating in a small, bony head. Under his close-clipped hair this repellent head showed a number of thick ridges, as if the skull joinings were overgrown by layers of superfluous bone. With its small, rudimentary ears, this head had a positively malignant look. The man seemed not more than half human, but he was the only householder on the lonely road to Mora.”
— Willa Cather, describing the murderer Buck Scales in Death Comes for the Archbishop.