That poem of Browning owes much of its haunting charm to this very circumstance, that the reader is never told who Childe Roland is, or why he wants to get to the Dark Tower, or what he expects to find when he does get there. There is a skillfully constructed atmosphere of Giants, and Ogres, and Hunchbacks, and the rest of the apparatus of fairy-tales; but there is no trace of the influence of Bædeker in the style. Now this is really very irritating to anybody who happens to be seriously concerned to get to that tower. I remember, as a boy, what misery I suffered over this poem. Had Browning been alive, I think I would have sought him out, so seriously did I take the Quest.
There’s always been disaster and war, ups and downs, dark ages and golden eras. It’s not the first time that something’s wiped out a big chunk of life on the planet, either. But each time that happens and the world recovers, some species don’t make it. This time it just might be us.
Jackie: That’s a cut, Zoey. It’s not an existential crisis.
Zoey: Everything happens for a reason.
Jackie: Sometimes that reason is bad plumbing.
Abe Sylvia, Nurse Jackie, s05e06