'When we lose our innocence - when we start feeling the weight of the atmosphere and learn that there's death in the pot - we take leave of our senses. Only children can hear the song of the male house mouse. Only children keep their eyes open. The only thing they have got is sense; they have highly developed "input systems," admitting all data indiscriminately. Matt Spireng has collected thousands of arrowheads and spearheads; he says that you really want to find arrowheads, you must walk with a child - a child will pick up everything. All my adult life I have wished to see the cemented case of the caddisfly larva. It took Sally Moore, the youngest daughter of friends, to find one on the pebbled bottom of a shallow stream on whose bank we sat side by side. "What's this?" she asked. That, I wanted to say as I recognized the prize she held, is a momento mori for people who read too much.'
Annie Dillard, Pilgrim at Tinker Creek, p.88.