The aim of literary ambition is to demonstrate one's greatness of soul.
The discontented believe that their regrets are about the past.
Even the most fickle are faithful to a few bad habits.
An academic dialect is perfected when its terms are hard to understand and refer only to one another.
In the street, the gaze of desire is furtive or menacing.
The sage belongs to the same obsolete repertory as the virtuous maiden and the enlightened monarch.
Fail, and your friends feel superior. Succeed, and they feel resentful.
Complainers change their complaints, but they never reduce the amount of time spent in complaining.
Often, when I want to consult my impulses, I cannot find them.
Imagination has rules, but we can only guess what they are.
Living alone makes it harder to find someone to blame.
The power of lying is much less than the power of what is not to be discussed.
Taste refers to the past, imagination to the future.
Every day begins with an act of courage and hope: getting out of bed.
In every death, a busy world comes to an end.
It is possible to interpret without observing, but not to observe without interpreting.
Children use all their wiles to get their way with adults. Adults do the same with children.
Logic and fact keep interfering with the easy flow of conversation.
To understand a literary style, consider what it omits.
Cats are inquisitive, but hate to admit it.
Middle age went by while I was mourning for my lost youth.
A blocked path also offers guidance.
Totem poles and wooden masks no longer suggest tribal villages but fashionable drawing rooms in New York and Paris.
Amazing that the human race has taken enough time out from thinking about food or sex to create the arts and sciences.
Folly always knows the answer.
Expensive advertising courts us with hints and images. The ordinary kind merely says, Buy.
Only the broken-hearted know the truth about love.
Kafka: cries of helplessness in twenty powerful volumes.
Minds will wander even during the Last Judgment.
Ultimately, blind faith is the only kind.
Young poets bewail the passing of love; old poets, the passing of time. There is surprisingly little difference.
Three meals plus bedtime make four sure blessings a day.
Self-hatred and self-love are equally self-centered.
In love, we worry more about the meaning of silences than the meaning of words.
After my spectacular failures, I could not be satisfied with an ordinary success.
Never ask a bore a question.
Fulfillment is often more trouble than it is worth.
Money is to my social existence what health is to my body.
Cure for an obsession: get another one.
Even cats grow lonely and anxious.
Affection reproaches, but does not denounce.
Every literary critic believes he will outwit history and have the last word.
First literature came to refer only to itself, the literary theory.
Cynicism is full of naive disappointments.
Without civilization, we would not turn into animals, but vegetables.
Unlike the actual, the fictional explains itself.
The beginning of self-knowledge: recognizing that your motives are the same as other people's.
A sense of blessedness comes from a change of heart, not from more blessings.
I read less and less. I have not forgiven books for their failure to tell me the truth and make me happy.
Who would not give up wit for power and beauty?