In this book there will often be mention of wisdom and destiny, of happiness, justice, and love. There may seem to be some measure of irony in thus calling forth an intangible happiness where so much real sorrow prevails; a justice that may well be ideal in the bosom of an injustice, alas! only too material; a love that eludes the grasp in the midst of palpable hatred and callousness. The moment may seem but ill-chosen for leisurely search, in the hidden recess of man's heart, for motives of peace and tranquility; occasions for gladness, uplifting, and love; reasons for wonder and gratitudeseeing that the vast bulk of mankind, in whose name we would fain lift our voice, have not even the time or assurance to drain to the dregs the misery and desolation of life.
Maurice Maeterlinck was Nobel Prize in Literature, in 1911.