William H. Gass

I would rather it be the weather. It drives us in upon ourselves—an unlucky fate. Of course there is enough to stir our wonder anywhere; there’s enough to love, anywhere, if one is strong enough, if one is diligent enough, if one is perceptive, patient, kind enough—whatever it takes; and surely it’s better to live in the country, to love on a prairie by a drawing of rivers, in Iowa or Illinois or Indiana, say, than in any city, in any stinking fog of human beings, in any blooming orchard of machines. It ought to be. The cities are swollen and poisonous with people. It ought to be better. Man has never been a fit environment for man—for rats, maybe, rats do nicely, or for dogs or cats and the household beetle.

— “In the Heart of the Heart of the Country”