Thursday, May 31, 2012
Archibald MacLeish Quotes
"A man who lives, not by what he loves but what he hates, is a sick man."
"A real writer learns from earlier writers the way a boy learns from an apple orchard-by stealing what he has a taste for and can carry off."
"America is promises to take! America is promises to us to take them."
"Conventional wisdom notwithstanding, there is no reason either in football or in poetry why the two should not meet in a man's life if he has the weight and cares about the words."
"Democracy is never a thing done. Democracy is always something that a nation must be doing. What is necessary now is one thing and one thing only that democracy become again democracy in action, not democracy accomplished and piled up in goods and gold."
"Freedom is the right to one's dignity as a man."
"I think you have to deal with the confused situation that we're faced with by seizing on the glimpses and particles of life, seizing on them and holding them and trying to make a pattern of them. In other words, trying to put a world back together again out of its fragmentary moments."
"It is not in the world of ideas that life is lived. Life is lived for better or worse in life, and to a man in life, his life can be no more absurd than it can be the opposite of absurd, whatever that opposite may be."
"Journalism is concerned with events, poetry with feelings. Journalism is concerned with the look of the world, poetry with the feel of the world."
"Journalism wishes to tell what it is that has happened everywhere as though the same things had happened for every man. Poetry wishes to say what it is like for any man to be himself in the presence of a particular occurrence as though only he were alone there."
"Spring has many American faces. There are cities where it will come and go in a day and counties where it hangs around and never quite gets there. Summer is drawn blinds in Louisiana, long winds in Wyoming, shade of elms and maples in New England."
"The American mood, perhaps even the American character, has changed. There are few manifestations any longer of the old American self-assurance which so irritated Dickens. Instead, there is a sense of frustration so perceptible that even our politicians have attempted to exploit it."
"The business of the law is to make sense of the confusion of what we call human life - to reduce it to order but at the same time to give it possibility, scope, even dignity."
"The dissenter is every human being at those moments of his life when he resigns momentarily from the herd and thinks for himself."
"There are those who will say that the liberation of humanity, the freedom of man and mind is nothing but a dream. They are right. It is the American Dream."
"There are those, I know, who will reply that the liberation of humanity, the freedom of man and mind, is nothing but a dream. They are right. It is. It is the American Dream."
"To separate journalism and poetry, therefore-history and poetry-to set them up at opposite ends of the world of discourse, is to separate seeing from the feel of seeing, emotion from the acting of emotion, knowledge from the realization of knowledge."
"What is freedom? Freedom is the right to choose: the right to create for oneself the alternatives of choice."
"What is more important in a library than anything else - than everything else - is the fact that it exists."
"You burned the city of London in our houses and we felt the flames."