. . . nothing can be said about music, except when it is bad.
A writer is not so much someone who has something to say as he is someone who has found a process that will bring about new things he would not have thought of if he had not started to say them. That is, he does not draw on a reservoir; instead, he engages in an activity that brings to him a whole succession of unforseen stories, poems, essays, plays, laws, philosophies, religions . . .
Spontaneity (the impulses from our best self) get confused with impulsivity and acting-out (the impulses from our sick self) and there is then no way to tell the difference.
Only the man who can consciously assent to the power of the inner voice becomes a personality.
I don’t want you to follow me or anyone else. I would not lead you into the promised land if I could, because if I could lead you in, somebody else would lead you out.
Put out my eyes, and I can see you still; slam my ears to, and I can hear you yet; and without any feet can go to you; and tongueless, I can conjure you at will. Break off my arms, I shall take hold of you and grasp you with my heart as with a hand; arrest my heart, my brain will beat as true; and if you set this brain of mine afire, upon my blood I then will carry you.
Whatever has form is in the process still of being formed. Form is never fixed.
Invest in the “process” rather than the product. Process living neutralizes the depleting and impoverishing effects of chronically living in anticipation. Even when impossible goals occasionally are reached, satisfactions derived from them are invariably disappointing unless the process has given ample satisfaction along the way.
A wind blew, from what quarter I know not, but it lifted the half-grown leaves so that there was a flash of silver grey in the air. It was the time between the lights when colors undergo their intensification and purples and golds burn in windowpanes like the beat of an excitable heart; when for some reason the beauty of the world revealed and yet soon to perish . . . has two edges, one of laughter, one of anguish, cutting the heart asunder.
God will invade. But I wonder whether people who ask God to interfere openly and directly in our world quite realize what it will be like when he does. When that happens, it is the end of the world. When the author walks on to the stage the play is over. God is going to invade, all right: but what is the good of saying you are on His side then, when you see the whole natural universe melting away like a dream and something else — something it never entered your head to conceive — comes crashing in; something so beautiful to some of us and so terrible to others that none of us will have any choice left?
The reason why kids are crazy is because nobody can face the responsibility of bringing them up. Everybody’s too scared to deal with children all the time, so we reject them and send them away and torture them. The ones who survive are the conformists — their bodies are cut to the size of suits — the ones we label good. The ones who don’t fit the suits either are put in mental homes or become artists.
Creativity is not infinite; analysis is.