One evening there came into his soul the desire to fashion an image of ‘The Pleasure That Abideth For A Moment.’ And he went forth into the world to look for bronze. For he could only think in bronze.
But all the bronze in the whole world had disappeared; nor anywhere in the whole world was there any bronze to be found, save only the bronze of the image of ‘The Sorrow That Endureth For Ever.’
Now this image he had himself, and with his own hands, fashioned and had set it on the tomb of the one thing he had loved in life. On the tomb of the dead thing he had most loved had he set this image of his own fashioning, that it might serve as a sign of the love of man that dieth not, and a symbol of the sorrow of man that endureth for ever. And in the whole world there was no other bronze save the bronze of this image.
And he took the image he had fashioned, and set it in a great furnace, and gave it to the fire.
And out of the bronze of the image of ‘The Sorrow That Endureth For Ever’ he fashioned an image of ‘The Pleasure That Abideth For A Moment.’
— Oscar Wilde, Poems in Prose, 1894