James Baldwin // "We are responsible for the world in which we find ourselves, if only because we are the only sentient force which can change it."
Ruth Bader Ginsburg // "Dissents speak to a future age. It’s not simply to say, 'My colleagues are wrong and I would do it this way.' But the greatest dissents do become court opinions and gradually over time their views become the dominant view. So that’s the dissenter’s hope: that they are writing not for today but for tomorrow."
Ernest Hemingway // "I would stand and look out over the roofs of Paris and think, 'Do not worry. You have always written before and you will write now. All you have to do is write one true sentence. Write the truest sentence that you know.'"
Henry Miller // "From the little reading I had done I had observed that the men who were most in life, who were molding life, who were life itself, ate little, slept little, owned little or nothing. They had no illusions about duty, or the perpetuation of their kith and kin, or the preservation of the State. They were interested in truth and in truth alone. They recognized only one kind of activity...creation."
Sylvia Plath // "Remember, remember, this is now, and now, and now. Live it, feel it, cling to it. I want to become acutely aware of all I’ve taken for granted."
Leonard Cohen // "I think there’s an appetite for seriousness. Seriousness is voluptuous, and very few people have allowed themselves the luxury of it... Seriousness is the deepest pleasure we have. But now I see people allowing their lives to diminish, to become shallow, so they can’t enjoy the deep wells of experience. Maybe it’s always been this way, when the heart tends to shut down... If only the heart shut down and there were no repercussions, it would be O.K., but when the heart shuts down, the whole system goes into a kind of despair that is intolerable."
Charles Bukowski // "And remember this: the page you are looking at now, I once typed the words with care with you in mind under a yellow light with the radio on."
Salvador Dali // "Every one of my paintings, everybody laughed...but after 12 years, every scientific people recognize that every one of these paintings is a real prophecy. In the moment of painting my watches, a rigid object for everybody, I myself paint these watches very soft...everybody laughed. The last development of nuclear physics proved a new conception that space and time is completely flexible."
Arundhati Roy // "Perhaps it’s true that things can change in a day. That a few dozen hours can affect the outcome of whole lifetimes. And that when they do, those few dozen hours, like the salvaged remains of a burned house...the charred clock, the singed photograph, the scorched furniture...must be resurrected from the ruins and examined. Preserved. Accounted for. Little events, ordinary things, smashed and reconstituted. Imbued with new meaning. Suddenly they become the bleached bones of a story."
Jack Kerouac // "There was nothing to talk about anymore. The only thing to do was go."
Stanley Kubrick // "Children, of course, begin life with an untarnished sense of wonder, a capacity to experience total joy at something as simple as the greenness of a leaf; but as they grow older, the awareness of death and decay begins to impinge on their consciousness and subtly erode their joie de vivre, their idealism...and their assumption of immortality. As a child matures, he sees death and pain everywhere about him, and begins to lose faith in the ultimate goodness of man. But, if he’s reasonably strong...and lucky...he can emerge from this twilight of the soul into a rebirth... Both because of and in spite of his awareness of the meaninglessness of life, he can forge a fresh sense of purpose and affirmation. He may not recapture the same pure sense of wonder he was born with, but he can shape something far more enduring and sustaining. The most terrifying fact about the universe is not that it is hostile but that it is indifferent; but if we can come to terms with this indifference and accept the challenges of life within the boundaries of death...our existence as a species can have genuine meaning and fulfillment. However vast the darkness, we must supply our own light."
Henri Matisse // "The artist must see all things as if he were seeing them for the first time. All his life he must see as he did when he was a child."