The poet never asks for admiration; he wants to be believed.
Take a commonplace, clean it and polish it, light it so that it produces the same effect of youth and freshness and originality and spontaneity as it did originally, and you have done a poet’s job. The rest is literature.
The actual tragedies of life bear no relation to one’s preconceived ideas. In the event, one is always bewildered by their simplicity, their grandeur of design, and by that element of the bizarre which seems inherent in them.
Man seeks to escape himself in myth, and does so by any means at his disposal. Drugs, alcohol, or lies. Unable to withdraw into himself, he disguises himself. Lies and inaccuracy give him a few moments of comfort.
Topics: Alcohol, Drugs
If an addict who has been completely cured starts smoking again he no longer experiences the discomfort of his first addiction. There exists, therefore, outside alkaloids and habit, a sense for opium, an intangible habit which lives on, despite the recasting of the organism. The dead drug leaves a ghost behind. At certain hours it haunts the house.
Mystery has its own mysteries, and there are gods above gods. We have ours, they have theirs. That is what’s known as infinity.
Such is the role of poetry. It unveils, in the strict sense of the word. It lays bare, under a light which shakes off torpor, the surprising things which surround us and which our senses record mechanically.
Topics: Poetry, Poets
You have comfort.
The instinct of nearly all societies is to lock up anybody who is truly free. First, society begins by trying to beat you up. If this fails, they try to poison you. If this fails too, the finish by loading honors on your head.
Topics: Honor, Society, Yin, Try
Everything one does in life, even love, occurs in an express train racing toward death. To smoke opium is to get out of the train while it is still moving. It is to concern oneself with something other than life or death.
What is line? It is life. A line must live at each point along its course in such a way that the artist’s presence makes itself felt above that of the model. With the writer, line takes precedence over form and content. It runs through the words he assembles. It strikes a continuous note unperceived by ear or eye. It is, in a way, the soul’s style, and if the line ceases to have a life of its own, if it only describes an arabesque, the soul is missing and the writing dies.
A car can massage organs which no masseur can reach. It is the one remedy for the disorders of the great sympathetic nervous system.
The joy of youth is to disobey; but the trouble is that there are no longer any orders.
An original artist is unable to copy. So he has only to copy in order to be original.
I feel that there is an angel inside me whom I am constantly shocking.
- Victor Hugo French Novelist
- Michel Houellebecq French Novelist
- Remy de Gourmont French Poet
- Guillaume Apollinaire Italian-born French Poet
- Anatole France French Novelist
- Jules Renard French Novelist
- Gustave Flaubert French Novelist
- Guy de Maupassant French Short-story Writer
- Voltaire French Philosopher, Author
- Arthur Rimbaud French Poet