Be patient toward all that is unsolved in your heart and try to love the questions themselves, like locked rooms and like books that are now written in a very foreign tongue. Do not now seek the answers, which cannot be given you because you would not be able to live them. And the point is, to live everything. Live the questions now. Perhaps you will then gradually, without noticing it, live along some distant day into the answer.
Rainer Maria Rilke, Letters to a Young Poet
There are two types of people in the world: those who prefer to be sad among others, and those who prefer to be sad alone.
Nicole Krauss, The History of Love
Pack a pillow and blanket and see as much of the world as you can. You will not regret it.
Jhumpa Lahiri, The Namesake
I am a lover and have not found my thing to love. It makes my destruction inevitable, you see. There are few who understand that.
Sherwood Anderson, Winesburg, Ohio
All human beings have three lives: public, private, and secret.
Gabriel García Márquez, Gabriel García Márquez: a Life
From childhood’s hour I have not been
As others were; I have not seen
As others saw; I could not bring
My passions from a common spring.
From the same source I have not taken
My sorrow; I could not awaken
My heart to joy at the same tone;
And all I loved, I loved alone.
Edgar Allan Poe, The Collected Poetry of Edgar Allan Poe
I don’t want just words. If that’s all you have for me, you’d better go.
F. Scott Fitzgerald, The Beautiful and Damned
Being scared isn’t the problem. It’s not running away that’s the hard part.
John Connolly, Nocturnes
If nature has made you for a giver, your hands are born open, and so is your heart; and though there may be times when your hands are empty, your heart is always full, and you can give things out of that—warm things, kind things, sweet things—help and comfort and laughter—and sometimes gay, kind laughter is the best help of all.
Frances Hodgson Burnett, A Little Princess
A self is not something static, tied up in a pretty parcel and handed to the child, finished and complete. A self is always becoming.
Madeleine L’Engle, A Circle of Quiet
Travel is fatal to prejudice, bigotry, and narrow-mindedness, and many of our people need it sorely on these accounts.
Mark Twain, The Innocents Abroad
I know that’s what people say— you’ll get over it. I’d say it, too. But I know it’s not true. Oh, you’ll be happy again, never fear. But you won’t forget. Every time you fall in love it will be because something in the man reminds you of him.
Betty Smith, A Tree Grows in Brooklyn
All life is an experiment. The more experiments you make the better.
Ralph Waldo Emerson, Journals of Ralph Waldo Emerson
I am so clever that sometimes I don’t understand a single word of what I am saying.
Oscar Wilde, The Happy Prince and Other Stories
People don’t save other people. People save themselves.
Jeffrey Eugenides, The Marriage Plot