Quotations

A tribute to great wordsmiths. I’ll begin with Shel Silverstein

“Underneath my outside face
There’s a face that none can see.
A little less smiley,
A little less sure,
But a whole lot more like me.”

“If you’re sloppy, that’s just fine.
If you’re moody, I won’t mind.
If you’re fat, that’s fine with me.
If you’re skinny, let it be.
If you’re bossy, that’s all right.
if you’re nasty, I won’t fight.
If you’re rough, well that’s just you.
If you’re mean, that’s all right too.
Whatever you are is all okay.
I don’t like you anyway.”

“She had blue skin,
And so did he.
He kept it hid
And so did she.
They searched for blue
Their whole life through,
Then passed right by-
And never knew.”

“A spider lives inside my head
Who weaves a strange and wondrous web
Of silken threads and silver strings
To catch all sorts of flying things,
Like crumbs of thoughts and bits of smiles
And specks of dried-up tears,
And dust of dreams that catch and cling
For years and years and years…”

“The Yesees said yes to anything
That anyone suggested.
The Noees said no to everything
Unless it was proven and tested.
So the Yesees all died of much too much
And the Noees all died of fright,
But somehow I think the Thinkforyourselfees
All came out all right.”

Cool idea for a thread.

I shall contribute when able but for now I offer this gem…

“Dude!” ~ anonymous

from “You Can’t Stop Progress” by Clutch, 2007’s From Beale St to Oblivion album…

“Though it’s the opening track, You Can’t Stop Progress is one of the last songs we wrote for Beale Street. It is sort of a preface to the next track, Power Player. We happened to perform it one night before Power Player, and it became apparent that the two were joined at the hip. We first heard the Bad Brains 20 years ago and in this tune it’s obvious that they’re still influencing us.”

Yes, I’ll be a responsible member
of this great and bless’d society.
I’ve come to understand the wrongful nature
of gun ownership in the age of monarchy.
But sometimes it’s just so hard
to act like the person you weren’t born to be.

Felonious behavior. Countless misdemeanors.
Impersonating an officer of the law.

Bonafide man of action! How you like that?
Bonafide man of action! How you like that?
You can’t stop, you can’t stop progress.
You can’t stop, you can’t stop, no, no, no
You can’t stop, you can’t stop progress.
You can’t stop, you can’t stop, no, no, no

I understand there’s no victimless crimes.
That being said I feel rather victimized.
And I will seek substantial compensation.
Whether legally, illegally-ish, or otherwise.
But sometimes it’s such a hassle
to sit patiently outside the open gates of a loaded castle.

Felonious behavior. Countless misdemeanors.
Impersonating an officer of the law.

Bonafide man of action! How you like that?
Bonafide man of action! How you like that?
You can’t stop, you can’t stop progress.
You can’t stop, you can’t stop, no, no, no
You can’t stop, you can’t stop progress.
You can’t stop, you can’t stop, no, no, no

Gandhi

“Happiness is when what you think, what you say, and what you do are in harmony.”

“I object to violence because when it appears to do good, the good is only temporary; the evil it does is permanent.”

“In matters of conscience, the law of the majority has no place.”

“One needs to be slow to form convictions, but once formed they must be defended against the heaviest odds.”

“You must not lose faith in humanity. Humanity is an ocean; if a few drops of the ocean are dirty, the ocean does not become dirty.”

I loved reading Shel Silverstein when I was in elementary school. The imagery his words and phrases created in my impressionable mind still stick with me today.

I don’t remember if I read The Giving Tree or had it read to me, but I can still clearly remember the emotional impact of the story when it was done. I think because childhood emotion rarely runs outside of your own little world, the memory of what I felt still firmly sticks with me.

I could have done a thread just on Silverstein. His words are simple and well crafted illustrations of this keen sense of being in touch with humankind, emotion, feelings, humor, I don’t know. I wish I could describe his talent with one iota of the mastery he had.

It doesn’t, because you don’t really have a firm grasp on the “outside world.” What you feel and what you know is basically confined to you and your everyday activities and almost nothing else.

The two books I read repeatedly (along with Encyclopedia Brown) were Where the Sidewalk Ends and A Light in the Attic. One of my favorite passages - likely because it’s simplicity and the fact that I have a twin sister - was:

"Teddy said it was a hat
so I put it on.
Now Dad is saying
“Where the heck’s the toilet plunger gone?”

:slight_smile:

Glenn, that’s a great poem. I’ve always liked it, and I really love Heaney. Great stuff. :thumbup:

I’ll first start with what I consider to be possibly the most beautiful sentence ever written in the English language:

“His soul swooned slowly as he heard the snow falling faintly through the universe and faintly falling, like the descent of their last end, upon all the living and the dead.” – James Joyce. That’s the last sentence from “The Dead”, which is the last story in the book Dubliners. It’s also my sig. :slight_smile:

And then there’s this. If you read the whole thing, I’ll give you a nickel and a pat on the head. This is “The Skip”, by James Fenton.

I took my life and threw it on the skip,
Reckoning the next-door neighbours wouldn’t mind
If my life hitched a lift to the council tip
With their dry rot and rubble. What you find

With skips is - the whole community joins in.
Old mattresses appear, doors kind of drift
Along with all that won’t fit in the bin
And what the bin-men can’t be fished to shift.

I threw away my life, and there it lay
And grew quite sodden. `What a dreadful shame,’
Clucked some old bag and sucked her teeth: ‘The way
The young these days … no values … me, I blame…’

But I blamed no one. Quality control
Had loused it up, and that was that. 'Nough said.
I couldn’t stick at home. I took a stroll
And passed the skip, and left my life for dead.

Without my life, the beer was just as foul,
The landlord still as filthy as his wife,
The chicken in the basket was an owl,
And no one said: `Ee, Jim-lad, whur’s thee life?’

Well, I got back that night the worse for wear,
But still just capable of single vision ;
Looked in the skip; my life - it wasn’t there!
Some bugger’d nicked it - without my permission.

Okay, so I got angry and began
To shout, and woke the street. Okay. Okay!
And I was sick all down the neighbour’s van.
And I disgraced myself on the par-kay.

And then … you know how if you’ve had a few
You’ll wake at dawn, all healthy, like sea breezes,
Raring to go, and thinking: `Clever you!
You’ve got away with it.’ And then, oh Jesus,

It hits you. Well, that morning, just at six
I woke, got up and looked down at the skip.
There lay my life, still sodden, on the bricks;
There lay my poor old life, arse over tip.

Or was it mine? Still dressed, I went downstairs
And took a long cool look. The truth was dawning.
Someone had just exchanged my life for theirs.
Poor fool, I thought - I should have left a warning.

Some bastard saw my life and thought it nicer
Than what he had. Yet what he’d had seemed fine.
He’d never caught his fingers in the slicer
The way I’d managed in that life of mine.

His life lay glistening in the rain, neglected,
Yet still a decent, an authentic life.
Some people I can think of, I reflected
Would take that thing as soon as you’d say Knife.

It seemed a shame to miss a chance like that.
I brought the life in, dried it by the stove.
It looked so fetching, stretched out on the mat.
I tried it on. It fitted, like a glove.

And now, when some local bat drops off the twig
And new folk take the house, and pull up floors
And knock down walls and hire some kind of big
Container (say, a skip) for their old doors,

I’ll watch it like a hawk, and every day
I’ll make at least - oh - half a dozen trips.
I’ve furnished an existence in that way.
You’d not believe the things you find on skips.

I am happy to join with you today in what will go down in history as the greatest demonstration for freedom in the history of our nation.

Five score years ago, a great American, in whose symbolic shadow we stand today, signed the Emancipation Proclamation. This momentous decree came as a great beacon light of hope to millions of Negro slaves who had been seared in the flames of withering injustice. It came as a joyous daybreak to end the long night of their captivity.

But 100 years later, the Negro still is not free. One hundred years later, the life of the Negro is still sadly crippled by the manacles of segregation and the chains of discrimination. One hundred years later, the Negro lives on a lonely island of poverty in the midst of a vast ocean of material prosperity. One hundred years later, the Negro is still languished in the corners of American society and finds himself an exile in his own land. And so we’ve come here today to dramatize a shameful condition.

In a sense we’ve come to our nation’s capital to cash a check. When the architects of our republic wrote the magnificent words of the Constitution and the Declaration of Independence, they were signing a promissory note to which every American was to fall heir. This note was a promise that all men – yes, black men as well as white men – would be guaranteed the unalienable rights of life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.

It is obvious today that America has defaulted on this promissory note insofar as her citizens of color are concerned. Instead of honoring this sacred obligation, America has given the Negro people a bad check, a check that has come back marked “insufficient funds.”

But we refuse to believe that the bank of justice is bankrupt. We refuse to believe that there are insufficient funds in the great vaults of opportunity of this nation. And so we’ve come to cash this check, a check that will give us upon demand the riches of freedom and security of justice. We have also come to this hallowed spot to remind America of the fierce urgency of now. This is no time to engage in the luxury of cooling off or to take the tranquilizing drug of gradualism. Now is the time to make real the promises of democracy. Now is the time to rise from the dark and desolate valley of segregation to the sunlit path of racial justice. Now is the time to lift our nation from the quicksands of racial injustice to the solid rock of brotherhood. Now is the time to make justice a reality for all of God’s children.

It would be fatal for the nation to overlook the urgency of the moment. This sweltering summer of the Negro’s legitimate discontent will not pass until there is an invigorating autumn of freedom and equality. 1963 is not an end but a beginning. Those who hoped that the Negro needed to blow off steam and will now be content will have a rude awakening if the nation returns to business as usual. There will be neither rest nor tranquility in America until the Negro is granted his citizenship rights. The whirlwinds of revolt will continue to shake the foundations of our nation until the bright day of justice emerges.

But there is something that I must say to my people who stand on the warm threshold which leads into the palace of justice. In the process of gaining our rightful place we must not be guilty of wrongful deeds. Let us not seek to satisfy our thirst for freedom by drinking from the cup of bitterness and hatred. We must forever conduct our struggle on the high plane of dignity and discipline. We must not allow our creative protest to degenerate into physical violence. Again and again we must rise to the majestic heights of meeting physical force with soul force. The marvelous new militancy which has engulfed the Negro community must not lead us to a distrust of all white people, for many of our white brothers, as evidenced by their presence here today, have come to realize that their destiny is tied up with our destiny. And they have come to realize that their freedom is inextricably bound to our freedom. We cannot walk alone.

As we walk, we must make the pledge that we shall always march ahead. We cannot turn back. There are those who are asking the devotees of civil rights, “When will you be satisfied?” We can never be satisfied as long as the Negro is the victim of the unspeakable horrors of police brutality. We can never be satisfied as long as our bodies, heavy with the fatigue of travel, cannot gain lodging in the motels of the highways and the hotels of the cities. We cannot be satisfied as long as the Negro’s basic mobility is from a smaller ghetto to a larger one. We can never be satisfied as long as our children are stripped of their selfhood and robbed of their dignity by signs stating “for whites only.” We cannot be satisfied as long as a Negro in Mississippi cannot vote and a Negro in New York believes he has nothing for which to vote. No, no we are not satisfied and we will not be satisfied until justice rolls down like waters and righteousness like a mighty stream.

I am not unmindful that some of you have come here out of great trials and tribulations. Some of you have come fresh from narrow jail cells. Some of you have come from areas where your quest for freedom left you battered by storms of persecution and staggered by the winds of police brutality. You have been the veterans of creative suffering. Continue to work with the faith that unearned suffering is redemptive.

Go back to Mississippi, go back to Alabama, go back to South Carolina, go back to Georgia, go back to Louisiana, go back to the slums and ghettos of our northern cities, knowing that somehow this situation can and will be changed.

Let us not wallow in the valley of despair. I say to you today my friends – so even though we face the difficulties of today and tomorrow, I still have a dream. It is a dream deeply rooted in the American dream.

I have a dream that one day this nation will rise up and live out the true meaning of its creed: “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal.”

I have a dream that one day on the red hills of Georgia the sons of former slaves and the sons of former slave owners will be able to sit down together at the table of brotherhood.

I have a dream that one day even the state of Mississippi, a state sweltering with the heat of injustice, sweltering with the heat of oppression, will be transformed into an oasis of freedom and justice.

I have a dream that my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin but by the content of their character.

I have a dream today.

I have a dream that one day down in Alabama, with its vicious racists, with its governor having his lips dripping with the words of interposition and nullification – one day right there in Alabama little black boys and black girls will be able to join hands with little white boys and white girls as sisters and brothers.

I have a dream today.

I have a dream that one day every valley shall be exalted, and every hill and mountain shall be made low, the rough places will be made plain, and the crooked places will be made straight, and the glory of the Lord shall be revealed and all flesh shall see it together.

This is our hope. This is the faith that I go back to the South with. With this faith we will be able to hew out of the mountain of despair a stone of hope. With this faith we will be able to transform the jangling discords of our nation into a beautiful symphony of brotherhood. With this faith we will be able to work together, to pray together, to struggle together, to go to jail together, to stand up for freedom together, knowing that we will be free one day.

This will be the day, this will be the day when all of God’s children will be able to sing with new meaning “My country 'tis of thee, sweet land of liberty, of thee I sing. Land where my father’s died, land of the Pilgrim’s pride, from every mountainside, let freedom ring!”

And if America is to be a great nation, this must become true. And so let freedom ring from the prodigious hilltops of New Hampshire. Let freedom ring from the mighty mountains of New York. Let freedom ring from the heightening Alleghenies of Pennsylvania.

Let freedom ring from the snow-capped Rockies of Colorado. Let freedom ring from the curvaceous slopes of California.

But not only that; let freedom ring from Stone Mountain of Georgia.

Let freedom ring from Lookout Mountain of Tennessee.

Let freedom ring from every hill and molehill of Mississippi – from every mountainside.

Let freedom ring. And when this happens, and when we allow freedom ring – when we let it ring from every village and every hamlet, from every state and every city, we will be able to speed up that day when all of God’s children – black men and white men, Jews and Gentiles, Protestants and Catholics – will be able to join hands and sing in the words of the old Negro spiritual: “Free at last! Free at last! Thank God Almighty, we are free at last!”

Ernest Hemingway - “I love sleep. My life has the tendency to fall apart when I’m awake, you know?”

“Nobody realizes that some people expend tremendous energy merely to be normal.” Albert Camus

^^ That one remind me of the Jim Gaffigan joke “I bet people in a coma occasionally think, “This is pretty sweet actually.””

^ That one is just too true…nothing else to add really.

Jim Gaffigan is one funny guy. I have been inspired to find some more of his jokes to quote.

Life is a little easier for attractive people. Think about it: if a stranger smiles at you and they’re attractive, you think, ‘Oh, they’re nice,’ but if a stranger’s ugly, you’re like, ‘What do they want? Get away from me, weirdo.’

When they first introduced bottled water, I thought it was so funny. I was like, “Bottled water! Ha ha, they’re selling bottled water! I guess I’ll try it… Ahh… this is good. This is more watery than water. Yeah, this has got a water kick to it.”

My favorite channel is the Lifetime Channel because Lifetime is television for women – Lifetime: Television for Women. Yet, for some reason, there’s always a woman getting beaten on that channel.

  • thomas fuller

The cast of Parks and Recreation has got to be one of the best ever assembled and its crown jewel is Ron Swanson. Almost every line that comes out of his mouth is memorable.

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lukjwv_V7Gc[/youtube]

That’s my kind of humor right thar.

“I used to have a drug problem. Now I make enough money.” - David Lee Roth

A few weeks ago, I was reading some Carl Sandburg, and I found what now may be my favorite poem. I have read it probably twenty times since. Here is a fantastic excerpt.

The People, Yes
81

"Who and what is man? He is Atlas and Thor and Yankee Doodle, an eagle, a lion, a rooster, a bear that walks like a man, an elephant, a moon-face, David and Goliath, Paul Bunyan, and the Flying Dutchman, Shakespeare, Lincoln and Christ, the Equator and the Arctic Poles, holding in one hand the Bank of England and the Roman Catholic Church, in the other the Red Army and the Standard Oil Company, holding in easy reach the dogs of war and the doves of peace, the tigers of wrath and the horses of instruction…

"Man is born with rainbows in his heart and you’ll never read him unless you consider rainbows. He is a trouble shooter with big promises. He trades the Oklahoma roan mustang for a tub in the sky with wings falling falling in Alaska. Hard as a rock his head is an egg and ponders ponders. He is a phantasmagoria of crimson dawns and what it takes to build his dreams."

“Gratitude unlocks the fullness of life. It turns what we have into enough, and more. It turns denial into acceptance, chaos to order, confusion to clarity. It can turn a meal into a feast, a house into a home, a stranger into a friend. Gratitude makes sense of our past, brings peace for today, and creates a vision for tomorrow.”
–Melody Beattie

“Find the good – and praise it.”
–Alex Haley

“What if you gave someone a gift, and they neglected to thank you for it–would you be likely to give them another? Life is the same way. In order to attract more of the blessings that life has to offer, you must truly appreciate what you already have.”
–Ralph Marston

“If the only prayer you say in your life is “thank you,” that would suffice.”
–Meister Eckhart

Some of the greatest, from one of the greatest:

http://www.whizzpast.com/20-greatest-hunter-s-thompson-quotes-voted-goodreads/

eg.

“Let us toast to animal pleasures, to escapism, to rain on the roof and instant coffee, to unemployment insurance and library cards, to absinthe and good-hearted landlords, to music and warm bodies and contraceptives… and to the “good life”, whatever it is and wherever it happens to be.”

“A man who procrastinates in his choosing will inevitably have his choice made for him by circumstance.”

“Life should not be a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in a pretty and well preserved body, but rather to skid in broadside in a cloud of smoke, thoroughly used up, totally worn out, and loudly proclaiming “Wow! What a Ride!”