Extract from The Prelude by Wordsworth:

"That very day,
From a bare ridge we also first beheld
Unveiled the summit of Mont Blanc, and grieved
To have a soulless image on the eye
That had usurped upon a living thought
That never more could be."

And here's a related passage from J.M. Coetzee's Disgrace:

"'Wordsworth is writing about the limits of sense-perception. It is a theme we have touched upon before. As the sense-organs reach the limit of their powers, their light begins to go out. Yet at the moment of expiry that light leaps up one last time like a candle-flame, giving us a glimpse of the invisible. The passage is difficult; perhaps it even contradicts the Mont Blanc moment. Nevertheless, Wordsworth seems to be feeling his way towards a balance: not the pure idea, wreathed in clouds, nor the visual image burned on the retina, overwhelming and disappointing us with its matter-of-fact clarity, but the sense-image, kept as fleeting as possible, as a means toward stirring or activating the idea that lies buried more deeply in the soil of memory.'

He pauses. Blank incomprehension. He has gone too far too fast. How to bring them to him?"

Another couple of lines:

"The irony does not escape him: that the one who comes to teach learns the keenest of lessons, while those who come to learn learn nothing."

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