Tag Archives: quote

Peter Scupham

 
“I would like my poems to be windows, not mirrors. A window frames a scene which has its own strong and independent life; the personality of the poet both shapes that scene and is subordinate to it. The frame, however, is important. A window cuts a shape, and I am fascinated by structure, harmony, balance – all those qualities which give definition to the view which the window elects to show.”
 
– Peter Scupham

John Updike (1932 – 2009)

“A healthy male adult bore consumes each year one and a half times his own weight in other people’s patience.”

“Each morning my characters greet me with misty faces willing, though chilled, to muster for another day’s progress through the dazzling quicksand the marsh of blank paper.”

“Writers take words seriously – perhaps the last professional class that does – and they struggle to steer their own through the crosswinds of meddling editors and careless typesetters and obtuse and malevolent reviewers into the lap of the ideal reader.”

“The writer must face the fact that ordinary lives are what most people live most of the time, and that the novel as a narration of the fantastic and the adventurous is really an escapist plot; that aesthetically the ordinary, the banal, is what you must deal with.”

“The refusal to rest content, the willingness to risk excess on behalf of one’s obsessions, is what distinguishes artists from entertainers, and what makes some artists adventurers on behalf of us all.”

“I would especially like to recourt the Muse of poetry, who ran off with the mailman four years ago, and drops me only a scribbled postcard from time to time.”

“From earliest childhood I was charmed by the materials of my craft, by pencils and paper and, later, by the typewriter and the entire apparatus of printing.  To condense from one’s memories and fantasies and small discoveries dark marks on paper which become handsomely reproducible many times over still seems to me, after nearly 30 years concerned with the making of books, a magical act, and a delightful technical process.  To distribute oneself thus, as a kind of confetti shower falling upon the heads and shoulders of mankind out of bookstores and the pages of magazines is surely a great privilege and a defiance of the usual earthbound laws whereby human beings make themselves known to one another.”

Live every day like your hair was on fire

“Praise be to Nero’s Neptune
The Titanic sails at dawn
And everybody’s shouting
“Which Side Are You On?”
And Ezra Pound and T S Eliot
Fighting in the captain’s tower
While calypso singers laugh at them
And fishermen hold flowers …”
– Bob Dylan

“Perhaps they are not stars, but rather openings in heaven where the love of our lost ones pours through and shines down upon us to let us know they are happy.”
– Eskimo proverb

“There are so many little dyings that it doesn’t matter which one of them is death.”
– Kenneth Patchen

“From my rotting body, flowers shall grow and I am in them and that is eternity.”
– Edvard Munch

“I want a priest, a rabbi, and a Protestant clergyman.  I want to hedge my bets.”
– Wilson Mizner

“I meant, said Ipslore bitterly, what is there in this world that truly makes living worthwhile? 
Death thought about it, Cats, he said eventually, Cats are nice.”
– Terry Pratchett

“It isn’t necessary to imagine the world ending in fire or ice; there are two other possibilities: one is paperwork, and the other is nostalgia.”
– Frank Zappa

“I hope the leaving is joyful; and I hope never to return.”
– Frida Kahlo

“Death makes angels of us all and gives us wings where we had shoulders smooth as raven’s claws.”
– Jim Morrison

“For the Persian poet Rumi, each human life is analogous to a bowl floating on the surface of an infinite ocean.  As it moves along, it is slowly filling with the water around it.  That’s a metaphor for the acquisition of knowledge.  When the water in the bowl finally reaches the same level as the water outside, there is no longer any need for the container, and it drops away as the inner water merges with the outside water.  We call this the moment of death.  That analogy returns to me over and over as a metaphor for ourselves.”
– Bill Viola

“What is life? It is the flash of a firefly in the night. It is the breath of a buffalo in the wintertime. It is the little shadow which runs across the grass and loses itself in the sunset. ”
– Crowfoot

“If the only prayer you ever say in your entire life is thank you, it will be enough.”
– Meister Eckhart

“… and, when he shall die,
Take him and cut him out in little stars,
And he will make the face of heaven so fine
That all the world will be in love with night
And pay no worship to the garish sun.”
– William Shakespeare

“O Captain! my Captain! our fearful trip is done;
The ship has weather’d every rack, the prize we sought is won;
The port is near, the bells I hear, the people all exulting …”
– Walt Whitman

“He was a man, take him for all in all,
I shall not look upon his like again.”
– William Shakespeare

“There is a crack in everything, that’s how the light gets in.”
– Leonard Cohen

“Live every day like your hair was on fire.”
– Zen proverb