You play with ace and diamond, bat and ball, horse and track, gun and fowl, but, frolicsome Americans, is there not a finer game to be played? You exalt brief shows of strength or cunning but sigh impatiently at any talk of wisdom or grace. And from the wild new-world grandstands with their sunlit bunting or from the seats of high office, you guffaw at ugly misfortune and whisper nasty things behind the backs of the abandoned and lonely. And you mock those who desire to be awash in infinity, who want to shrink themselves for just a moment to a mere mote of dust in the vast and intemperate desert of this world, if only to see for just a moment that we are ALL mere motes, one no bigger or more beautiful than any other.
From “Letter from the Pleasant View Baptist Church” (Morganton, North Carolina, 1910)