Monday, July 20, 2009

Excerpts Usurped

Along my clicks, I come across quotes that stop me. I read them as part of something, expecting nothing. Then I go back and read them again. Slower. They open my eyelids or slack my jaw or drop my heart, and I say some variation on the word "yes" and I copy and paste them into a notepad file to make them mine, so I can come back to them when I need to.

Most of them have to do with either the creative process or perception. Those are the kind that hit close, the ones I find useful being who I am and how I feel and what I need. This is to share them, and to clean folders. Some quotes:

"They say that the human smile is in fact one of those primordial things - that in fact it's a showing of teeth, that it's a warning. That when we smile, in a primeval way it has to do with fear." -Christopher Walken

"I write differently from what I speak, I speak differently from what I think, I think differently from the way I ought to think, and so it all proceeds into deepest darkness." -Franz Kafka

"Altogether, I think we ought to read only books that bite and sting us. If the book we are reading doesn't shake us awake like a blow to the skull, why bother reading it in the first place? So that it can make us happy, as you put it? Good God, we'd be just as happy if we had no books at all; books that make us happy we could, in a pinch, write ourselves. What we need are books that hit us like a most painful misfortune, like the death of someone we loved more than we love ourselves, that make us feel as though we had been banished to the woods, far away from any human presence, like a suicide. A book must be the ax for the frozen sea within us. That is what I believe." -Franz Kafka

"We don't see things as they are, we see them as we are." -Anaïs Nin

"[The poet] arrives at the unknown: and even if, half crazed, in the end, he loses the understanding of his visions, he has seen them! Let him be destroyed in his leap by those unnamable, unutterable and innumerable things: there will come other horrible workers: they will begin at the horizons where he has succumbed." -Arthur Rimbaud

"The successful warrior is the average man, with laser-like focus." -Bruce Lee

"Criticism is something we can avoid easily by saying nothing, doing nothing, and being nothing." -Aristotle

"We cannot mature and be fully creative by burying or displacing anxiety, but only by moving through it." -Soren Kierkegaard

"I pretty much try to stay in a constant state of confusion just because of the expression it leaves on my face." -Johnny Depp

"The only people for me are the mad ones, the ones who are mad to live, mad to talk, mad to be saved, desirous of everything at the same time, the ones who never yawn or say a commonplace thing, but burn, burn, burn like fabulous yellow roman candles exploding like spiders across the stars." -Jack Kerouac

1 comment:

Annette Flowers said...

Thank you. These reawakened some favorites I had forgotten about.