It is a gift we humans have, to hold on to beauty felt in a moment for a lifetime. Suddenly beauty comes to us, and gratefully we take it. We may not be able to recite time and place, but the memories can come flooding back, felt full force without warning or brought on purposefully by a triggering event. The smell of pinecones, the whiff of popcorn, the taste of a cold beer, or the bite of mint: a jumble of feelings, and then a sudden clarity of beauty or joy or sadness. Beauty is in the moments that endure, the moments that enliven us again and again. We stand on memory’s sturdy pilings. We thrive on the nourishment provided by the past.
— Nina Sankovitch, Tolstoy and the Purple Chair, p. 42