Intensity, that's how I rank souls. Not IQ, not achievement, not beauty, but that which makes everything within a soul submit to a mighty goal. Empty are most faces, devoid of meaning. Yet I look beneath every rock, for how can it be that the fierceness of Romeo or the cold hand of Genghiz has no echo in our age?
A shrill shriek, a howling menace constantly pummels the emaciated branches of my Oak. The North wind announces winters coming, and I wonder at the million times these branches must have been twisted, bent, the sheer agony of the blows from this cold merciless wind, before the Oak acquired it's great height. Such are the origins of beauty, great beauty.
- The Afghan Girl, photo by Steve McCurry, December 1984 AD