Quotes about Desire
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Quotes about Desire

Quotes about Desperation


Quotes about Desire

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I think most of the things I published have been published out of desperation, not because they were perfected. (M. H. Abrams)

So long as we have failed to eliminate any of the causes of human despair, we do not have the right to try to eliminate those means by which man tries to cleanse himself of despair. (Antonin Artaud)

The feeling of desperation and unhappiness are more useful to an artist than the feeling of contentment, because desperation and unhappiness stretch your whole sensibility. (Francis Bacon)

- Rolling Stone, 1983...
Action is the antidote to despair. (Joan Baez)

...such incidents brought me to the verge of despair, but little more and I would have put an end to my life – only art it was that withheld me, – ah, it seemed impossible to leave the world until I had produced all that I had felt called upon to produce. (Ludwig van Beethoven)

In the dark times / Will there also be singing? / Yes, there will also be singing. / About the dark times. (Bertolt Brecht)

Despair makes victims sometimes victors. (Edward G. Bulwer-Lytton)

Desperation is the raw material of drastic change. Only those who can leave behind everything they have ever believed in can hope to escape. (William S. Burroughs)

When you feel that you have reached the end and that you cannot go one step further, when life seems to be drained of all purpose - what a wonderful opportunity to start all over again, to turn over a new page. (Eileen Caddy)

Desperation is a necessary ingredient to learning anything, or creating anything. Period. If you ain't desperate at some point, you ain't interesting. (Jim Carrey)

Let judges secretly despair of justice: their verdicts will be more acute. Let generals secretly despair of triumph; killing will be defamed. Let priests secretly despair of faith: their compassion will be true. (Leonard Cohen)

It is only when you despair of all ordinary means, it is only when you're convinced that it must help you or you will perish, that the seed of life in you bestirs itself to provide a new resource. (Robert Collier)

The greatest inspiration is often born of desperation. (Comer Cotrell)

Rather than trying to kill or ignore the beast, I feed it. It remains a beast, but changes suddenly into one of desire instead of despair. (Warren Criswell)

Desperation is sometimes as powerful an inspirer as genius. (Benjamin Disraeli)

Despair is the damp of hell, as joy is the serenity of heaven. (John Donne)

Let me do my work each day, and if the darkened hours of despair overcome me, may I not forget the strength that comforted me in the desolation of other times... (Max Ehrmann)

But what we call our despair is often only the painful eagerness of unfed hope. (George Eliot)

There is no despair so absolute as that which comes with the first moments of our first great sorrow, when we have not yet known what it is to have suffered and be healed, to have despaired and have recovered hope. (George Eliot)

Despair is the price one pays for setting oneself an impossible aim. (Henry Graham Greene)

Don't despair, not even over the fact that you don't despair. (Franz Kafka)

Anyone who cannot come to terms with his life while he is alive needs one hand to ward off a little of his despair over his fate... but with his other hand he can note down what he sees among the ruins. (Franz Kafka)

The most common form of despair is not being who you are. (Soren Kierkegaard)

My interest in desperation lies only in that sometimes I find myself having become desperate. Very seldom do I start out that way. I can see of course that, in the abstract, thinking and all activity is rather desperate. (Willem de Kooning)

No matter what sort of difficulties, how painful experience is, if we lose our hope, that's our real disaster. (Dalai Lama)

The lowest ebb is the turn of the tide. (Henry Wadsworth Longfellow)

Close scrutiny will show that most crisis situations are opportunities to either advance, or stay where you are. (Maxwell Maltz)

- Life of Pi, 2001...
Despair was a heavy blackness that let no light in or out. It was a hell beyond expression. I thank God it always passed. (Yann Martel)

Innumerable confusions and a feeling of despair invariably emerge in periods of great technological and cultural transition. (Marshall McLuhan)

-on Vincent Van Gogh...
Wheels of fire, cosmic, rich, full-bodied honest victories over desperation. (Thomas Merton)

Despair is not a particularly respectable condition and yet despair and delight alternate like systole and diastole in my heart. (Stephanie Mills)

-to Arsene Houssaye...
You might perhaps like to see the few canvases I was able to save from the bailiffs and the rest, since I thought you might be so good as to help me a little, as I am in quite a desperate state, and the worst is that I can no longer even work. (Claude Monet)

If you are curious, you will learn. If you are desperate, you will discover. (Mooji)

Most artists create out of despair. The very nature of creation is not a performing glory on the outside, it's a painful, difficult search within. (Louise Nevelson)

Sometimes despair drags you from the studio... and sometimes it's the boot that drives your bum back into it. (K. Ann Price)

Art is always to a large extent about need, despair and hopelessness. (Gerhard Richter)

-writing to his lover Camille Claudel...
Have pity, mean girl. I can't go on. I can't go another day without seeing you. Atrocious madness, it's the end, I won't be able to work anymore. Malevolent goddess, and yet I love you furiously. (Auguste Rodin)

We must try not to sink beneath our anguish... but battle on. (J. K. Rowling)

Life begins on the other side of despair. (Jean-Paul Sartre)

-Trouble...
No storm is forever. (Gary D. Schmidt)

Finding permanent and universal causes for misfortune is the practice of despair... (Martin Seligman)

Give sorrow words. The grief that does not speak / Whispers the o're-fraught heart, and bids it break. (William Shakespeare)

Never despair, but if you do, work on in despair. (Publius Terentius Afer, Terence)

The mass of men lead lives of quiet desperation and go to the grave with the song still in them. (Henry David Thoreau)

Do not despair of life. Think of the fox, prowling in a winter night to satisfy his hunger. His race survives; I do not believe any of them ever committed suicide. (Henry David Thoreau)

- A Confession...
Can it be that I have overlooked something, that there is something which I have failed to understand? Is it not possible that this state of despair is common to everyone? (Leo Tolstoy)

In extreme situations, the entire universe becomes our foe; at such critical times, unity of mind and technique is essential - do not let your heart waver! (Morihei Ueshiba)

Because I remember, I despair. Because I remember, I have the duty to reject despair. (Elie Wiesel)

We have to go into the despair and go beyond it, by working and doing for somebody else, by using it for something else. (Elie Wiesel)

Your willingness to wrestle with your demons will cause your angels to sing. (August Wilson)


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Last modified: October 23, 2014