Mary Oliver (September 10, 1935 -)
My loyalty is to the inner vision, whenever and howsoever it may arrive. If I have a meeting with you at three o’clock, rejoice if I am late. Rejoice even more if I do not arrive at all… There is no other way work of artistic worth can be done. And the occasional success, to the striver, is worth everything. The most regretful people on earth are those who felt the call to creative work, who felt their own creative power restive and uprising, and gave to it neither power nor time.
Toni Morrison (February 18, 1931 -)
I know the world is bruised and bleeding, and though it is important not to ignore its pain, it is also critical to refuse to succumb to its malevolence…This is precisely the time when artists go to work. There is no time for despair, no place for self-pity, no need for silence, no room for fear. We speak, we write, we do language. That is how civilizations heal.
Inge and Sten Hegeler
If we look through a piece of glass, irregularities and impurities may distort and discolor the impression of what we see. If we regard something through a convex lens, it appears to be upside down. But if we place a concave lens in front of the convex lens, we correct the distortion in the convex lens and things no longer appear topsy-turvy. Each one of us regards the world through his own lens, his own glasses. The effect of those glasses is that, even though we may be looking at the same thing, not all of us actually see the same thing. The lenses are ground by each individual’s upbringing, disposition and other factors.
Seneca (c. 4 BC – AD 65)
I am grateful, not in order that my neighbour, provoked by the earlier act of kindness, may be more ready to benefit me, but simply in order that I may perform a most pleasant and beautiful act.
Anya Krugovoy Silver (December 22, 1968 – August 6, 2018)
Nothing focuses your mind and helps you see clearly what’s important quite like cancer. It made me want to explore, even more, the beauty and divinity of the ordinary world.
Walter “Walt” Whitman (May 31, 1819 – March 26, 1892)
I can conceive of no better service… than boldly exposing the weakness, liabilities and infinite corruptions of democracy.
David Michael Carr (September 8, 1956 – February 12, 2015)
It was a daylight waterfall of regret known to all addicts. It can’t get worse, but it does. When the bottom arrives, the cold fact of it all, it is always a surprise. Over fifteen years, I had made a seemingly organic journey from pothead to party boy, from knockaround guy to friendless thug. At thirty-one, I was washed out of my profession, morally and physically corrupt, but I still had almost a year left in the Life. I wasn’t done yet.