a curious love affair (a quotation presentation)

“I must admit to a lifelong love affair with curiosity.” 

-Timothy Findley as Juliet d’Orsey  ( Part 4, pg. 147)


Juliet d’ Orsey is telling her accounts of Robert Ross through reading out her childhood diary. She reveals how her inquisitive nature gave her insight into the private lives of others but also caused her to see events she didn’t otherwise want to see. However, Juliet still found pleasure from overhearing conversations, learning people’s secrets, and being a dedicated observer to the intrigues within and outside her world.


My interpretation of this quote is based on the notion that Juliet’s curiosity served as a comfort tool to subdue her uncertainty of the world. If Juliet wasn’t as curious as she was then we wouldn’t know what we know about Robert Ross, Taffler, and Barbra. This is because Juliet didn’t use her curiosity to feed a perverse or nosy part of her; she used her curiosity to honor the mysteries and realities of Robert, as well as the ways the war impacted injured soldiers. Findley’s use of the phrase ” love affair” suggests a relationship with curiosity out of marriage, indicating an unorthodox, almost erotic attraction towards the feeling of curiosity, but also the revelations one feels after discovering something. To Juliet, curiosity was intrinsic(very much like hunger), so it became painful for her when no answer was produced from her intrigues. Due to this, she was unable to recognize boundaries separating herself, a child, and the unsuitable matters of the adult world; therefore, when introduced to such matters: Juliet was traumatized-left with more questions than answers.


As an AP student, I am naturally incredibly inquisitive. I always want to know beyond the understood and this causes me to sometimes blur the lines between curiosity and corruption. As a result, I struggle with letting go of a question when I am not satisfied with the answer; I need the truth to make sense before I acknowledge it as the truth. Since I am a true believer in progression and moving forward, I am constantly searching for updated solutions to questions-making me vulnerable to perversion. As human beings, we have created curiosity the same way it has created us and because of this: I will always be hungry for knowledge.


History is full of curiosities.

That’s where they live

and scavenge for bones like


picking meat off transcripts,

overturning graves;

licking dust off antiques,

and whenever one makes a discovery

it releases a shriek so shrill it is

heard in the clinks of next century glass.


These curiosities,

these creatures of flight:


they flock and fly back into the past when the present is cold and real;

they huddle amongst the cobwebs and coffins,

they kill cats, sinking their teeth into pharaohs,

gaining 9 lives

only to spend them before their time,

they reverse their birth

to live with the dead,

replacing their mortality with


they could be in your past right now;

drinking up the


until memories are sucked dry, and spit out again

as eternal,




This poem was obviously inspired by the quote but also by the alternate definition of curiosity: “a strange or unusual object or fact.”  I played with the two different meanings of curiosity and what it means to uncover the unknown. Since The Wars was written as a glimpse into Robert Ross’ past through the perspectives of second-hand individuals and photographs, it almost felt like we, the readers, were forced to pick apart the rubble of Robert’s life and find answers where there are gaps in the negative spaces of photographs. I really liked the idea of personifying curiosities as creatures who live in history and make discoveries about the world before our time.


Featured Image:


Print Friendly, PDF & Email

6 thoughts on “a curious love affair (a quotation presentation)

  1. Dearest Liza,

    I adore your poetry. You have this this beautiful oddity to your writing. Nothing comes as expected; for example, a curiosity becoming a scavenger. We expect the past to inform us, to give us what we when we want it. We don’t see the carnivorous nature we adopt. The comparison to magpies and other such creatures is apt,for we often pick through our past, like we are grabbing small morsels. We only grab the “best bits”, the pieces that will fit with our narrative, and omit the rest. The haunting, macabre take on something we generally take as positive (curiosity about our past) was so refreshing to read.

    Improvements are hard to detail when it comes to your work, as I look to it as an exemplar. My main advice is a basic grammar and punctuation check. (I should take my own advice.) For example: in the Mean paragraph, a space between intrinsic and the bracket.

    I can’t wait to rake over your brains this semester; you are such an influence on me. Keep up the incredible work!



    1. Oh my goodness, Claire! This is so incredibly kind and thank you so much for always being so supportive! You are brilliant for picking up what I’m putting down and I’m so grateful you joined AP this year because you are so genius and talented.

      I’ll definitely have a look through my post and fix up those little GUMPS.

      Love you forever, baby!



  2. Dear Liza,

    Your emulation is remarkable and so is your analysis of this quote. What truly is amazing is that you were able to get so much depth out of this quote despite it only being one short sentence. It really shows how anything of the slightest nature can have so many possible meanings. This actually fits perfectly with your topic as although there may not be much for us to look at we are constantly striving to learn more.

    When you started with the meaning behind your quote, the idea of Juliet using curiosity as a medium through which she can comfort herself with the uncertainties of the world was fascinating. It’s nice to have something to provide us with solace even when we know that nothing is truly certain. Her relationship with curiosity did the same for her; it gave her a sense of fulfillment. I liked the way you phrased your words when you described how your own curiosity caused you to “blur the lines between curiosity and corruption”. Your emulation held so much vivid imagery that I am still in awe. The use of less periods helped in proving your point in how curiosity has no boundaries and cannot be compartmentalized.

    Honestly, I sat here forever trying to think about what there is to improve. I could only think of one thing and it was more of a recommendation. Maybe it would be cool if you related your emulation more to how curiosity can corrupt you. So talk more about the consequences of curiosity in how it can consume us from within with a feeling of longing or how it could end up tainting the purity that we already hold. I couldn’t think of anything else to improve upon and your poem is already amazing, so you can choose to do whatever you want with this.

    Overall, your post is concise and has great depth. I can’t wait to see what other ideas you are going to explore throughout this semester.


  3. Dearest Abhay,

    Wow… Thank you so much for providing such a thoughtful and lovely comment. You are such a brilliant, talented, and well spoken individual and I’m so grateful we have AP together!! I’m so happy that you found my piece concise and in depth because those are two aspects in my writing that I am constantly struggling with.

    Thank you so much for the recommendation! I LOVE IT! I didn’t go into too much detail about corruption v.s. curiosity because I wanted to save that concept for an essay, haha. I really appreciate your analysis of my own piece because it makes me understand how people perceive my work and it’s a habit I want to develop into my own writing.



  4. Liza

    The Wars is a great book and everyone should read it. Honestly, during this summer, The Wars was the first book I had read, and I wish it hadn’t been, because it made every other book I read subsequent seem worse. And you and your poetry really aren’t helping.

    Every time I talk about The Wars with you or read your writing or your notes I always gleam something new, something different about it’s themes and characters, and it ultimately makes the book better. That’s just what your presentation did, it made the book a lot better. Even with this fairly simple quote, once you place it in the context of the rest of the book, the meaning of this quote becomes very multi pronged.

    What stood out to me foremost in your analysis was how you made light of the other definition of curiosity to put this quote into a whole different perspective. One can be curious of events and circumstances that are outside their own realm of pertinence, just as one might exude curiosity towards Robert and his life, who he was, and the truth of what really happened to him, one can also see Robert and his story as a curiosity in and of itself. A creature that lives and breathes through past and present, a pattern that you described beautifully in your emulation.

    I don’t really have much to offer in light of improvement, but for the sake of getting a good mark, I do think I can say I could’ve done with a stronger personal connection, as I’m certain that everyone in this class can say they have encountered curiosity in their lives, and they embrace it in some way or another. Perhaps a personal anecdote or two to punctuate the magnitude to which curiosity has shaped your own identity.

    All in all, excellent as expected.



    1. Awww Liam!!

      Thank you so so much! Your praise means so so much to me and I’m so grateful to be able to be in the same English class together. Your insights into my work always blow me away and your work in itself fascinated me.

      Much love,


Leave a Reply to lizamkv Cancel reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *