But beauty is not the only thing that makes a woman attractive; indeed, great beauty is often somewhat chilling: you admire, but are not moved. ― W. Somerset Maugham, Ten Novels and Their Authors. (Vintage; New Ed edition 2001) Originally published 1948.
It is possible, of course, that I may exaggerate about them. I certainly hope that I do; for where there is no exaggeration there is no love, and where there is no love there is no understanding. It is only about things that do not interest one, that one can give a really unbiassed opinion;… Continue reading Oscar Wilde
Truly fine poetry must be read aloud. A good poem does not allow itself to be read in a low voice or silently. If we can read it silently, it is not a valid poem: a poem demands pronunciation. Poetry always remembers that it was an oral art before it was a written art. It… Continue reading Jorge Luis Borges
When the starry sky, a vista of open seas, or a stained-glass window shedding purple beams fascinate me, there is a cluster of meaning, of colors, of words, of caresses, there are light touches, scents, sighs, cadences that arise, shroud me, carry me away, and sweep me beyond the things I see, hear, or think.… Continue reading Julia Kristeva
The desire for reassurance. And, equally, to be reassured. (The itch to ask whether I’m still loved; and the itch to say, I love you, half-fearing that the other has forgotten, since the last time I said it.) — Susan Sontag, As Consciousness is Harnessed to Flesh: Journals and Notebooks, 1964-1980. (Farrar, Straus and Giroux;… Continue reading Susan Sontag
Literature is like phosphorus: it shines with its maximum brilliance at the moment when it attempts to die. — Roland Barthes, Writing Degree Zero. (Hill and Wang; Reissue edition April 1, 1977) Originally published 1953,
Look man, we’d probably most of us agree that these are dark times, and stupid ones, but do we need fiction that does nothing but dramatize how dark and stupid everything is? In dark times, the definition of good art would seem to be art that locates and applies CPR to those elements of what’s… Continue reading David Foster Wallace