• Pleasant things to hear, though hearing them from him embarrasses me. I soak up the praise but feel obliged to disparage the gift. I believe that most people have some degree of talent for something--forms, colors, words, sounds. Talent lies around in us like kindling waiting for a match, but some people, just as gifted as others, are less lucky. Fate never drops a match on them. The times are wrong, or their health is poor, or their energy low, or their obligations too many. Something.

    Wallace Stegner (2007). “Crossing to Safety”, p.50, Modern Library