Photo of Charles Bukowski

Charles Bukowski // "I spent weeks, months, years mulling about, passing my life away in tiny rooms and I was content with that... What a delicious thing it was to stretch out on a lumpy mattress in the dark on some second floor over an avenue, watching the headlights of cars work patterns across the ceiling... Rolling cigarettes in the dark, watching the red ash glow so red, it was magic even when a bit of ash would fall on your chest and burn you...shit!’d leap up laughing, then settle back down, wanting nothing, having nothing... I think I fattened my god damned soul in these rooms. All those hours of years...I suppose I was hiding, not wanting to be them, not wanting to be what my father had become...It looked like shit, it looked like waste... I hid, I hid, I hid, like a gopher, a mole, all I had was myself to feed upon and it filled me. I only became emptied when at times I had to enter the marketplace to sustain myself and I couldn’t believe those lives: men as slaves, doing monotonous and repetitive work they would never escape except by being discharged or dying but they accepted the horrible hours in order to make payment upon major necessities and minor luxuries. I preferred suicide, attempted several, failed, went back to the small rooms. And in those rooms, I blossomed again, like a flower, more like a flower on a cactus, but Christ it was marvelous, an out, a waiting, a calm place...I understood men who sat on mountain tops, who lived in caves. I understood that to have nothing was to have everything. The most valuable thing on earth was to have each hour as your own, that was all there was... To go up, fumble for your key, find it, fit it to the door, and the door opens and there is the dresser and there is the bed and there is the chair and there is the window and the dripping sink and there is the mouse sitting on the dresser, he has gotten bold, your eyes meet and his are much more beautiful than yours, and then with a lightning dart, he is gone and you are a young man in a very old world and you know it and it is absolutely strange and you sit down on the bed and take off your shoes and everything everywhere is quiet, final and perfect."

Photo of John Lewis

John Lewis // "Study the path of others to make your way easier and more abundant. Lean toward the whispers of your own heart, discover the universal truth, and follow its dictates... Release the need to hate, to harbor division, and the enticement of revenge. Release all bitterness. Hold only love, only peace in your heart, knowing that the battle of good to overcome evil is already won. Choose confrontation wisely, but when it is your time don't be afraid to stand up, speak up, and speak out against injustice. And if you follow your truth down the road to peace and the affirmation of love, if you shine like a beacon for all to see, then the poetry of all the great dreamers and philosophers is yours to manifest in a nation, a world community, and a beloved community that is finally at peace with itself."

Albert Camus // "Beauty, no doubt, does not make revolutions. But a day will come when revolutions will have need of beauty."

Photo of Gil Scott-Heron

Gil Scott-Heron // "I consider myself neither a poet, composer or musician. These are merely tools used by sensitive men to carve out a piece of beauty or truth that they hope may lead to peace and salvation."

Photo of Leonora Carrington

Leonora Carrington // "I am never lonely...or rather I never suffer from loneliness. I suffer much from the idea that my loneliness might be taken away from me by a lot of mercilessly well-meaning people."

Photo of Hayao Miyazaki

Hayao Miyazaki // "I believe that children's souls are the inheritors of historical memory from previous generations. It's just that as they grow older and experience the everyday world that memory sinks lower and lower. I feel I need to make a film that reaches down to that level. If I could do that I would die happy."

Photo of Saul Leiter

Saul Leiter // "There are the things that are out in the open and then there are the things that are hidden, and life...the real world has more to do with what is hidden, maybe. You think?"

Photo of James Baldwin

James Baldwin // "No one can possibly know what is about to happen: it is happening, each time, for the first time, for the only time."

Photo of Leonard Cohen

Leonard Cohen // "May you be surrounded by friends and family, and if this is not your lot, may the blessings find you in your solitude."

Photo of Billie Holiday

Billie Holiday // "You can't copy anybody and end up with anything. If you copy, it means you're working without any real feeling."

Photo of Simone de Beauvoir

Simone de Beauvoir // "I was made for another planet altogether. I mistook the way."

Photo of Oscar Wilde

Oscar Wilde // "The moment that an artist takes notice of what other people want, and tries to supply the demand, he ceases to be an artist."