12 12 / 2012
"A child playing - a summer evening - doors will open and shut, will keep opening and shutting, through which I see sights that make me weep. For they cannot be imparted. Hence our loneliness; hence our desolation. I turn to that spot in my mind and find it empty. My own infirmities oppress me. Where shall I go then? Shall I go to Hampton Court and look at the red walls and courtyards and the seemliness of herded yew trees making black pyramids symmetrically on the grass among flowers? There, shall I recover beauty, and impose order upon my raked, my dishevelled soul?"
05 11 / 2012
"I like the sense of one lighted room in the house while all the rest of the house, and the world outside, is in darkness. Just one lamp falling on my paper; it gives a concentration, an intimacy. What bad medium letters are; you will read this in daylight, and everything will look different. I think I feel night as poignantly as you feel the separateness of human beings; one of those convictions which are so personal, so sharp, that they hurt. It seems to me that I only begin to live after the sun has gone down and the stars have come out."
02 11 / 2012
"And when we are writing the life of a woman, we may, it is agreed, waive our demand for action, and substitute love instead. Love, the poet has said, is woman’s whole existence. And if we look for a moment at Orlando writing at her table, we must admit that never was there a woman more fitted for that calling. Surely, since she is a woman, and a beautiful woman, and a woman in the prime of life, she will soon give over this pretense of writing and thinking and begin to think, at least of a gamekeeper (and as long as she thinks of a man, nobody objects to a woman thinking). And then she will write him a little note (and as long as she writes little notes nobody objects to a woman writing either) and make an assignation for Sunday dusk; and Sunday dusk will come; and the gamekeeper will whistle under the window- all of which is, of course, the very stuff of life and the only possible subject for fiction."
22 10 / 2012
"I am in the mood to dissolve in the sky."
17 10 / 2012
"For it would seem…that we write, not with the fingers, but with the whole person. The nerve which controls the pen winds itself about every fibre of our being, threads the heart, pierces the liver."
17 10 / 2012
"Then some strange ecstasy came over her. Some wild notion she had of following the birds to the rim of the world and flinging herself on the spongy turf and there drinking forgetfulness, while the rooks’ hoarse laughter sounded over her."
23 9 / 2012
"Sitting alone among the clean cups at the long table, she felt cut off from other people, and able only to go on watching, asking, wondering; what does it mean then? What can it all mean?"
19 9 / 2012
"I am growing up…I am losing my illusions, perhaps to acquire new ones."
17 9 / 2012
She remembered how, as a young man, she had insisted that women must be obedient, chaste, scented, and exquisitely apparelled. “Now I shall have to pay in my own person for those desires,” she reflected; “for women are not (judging by my own short experience of the sex) obedient, chaste, scented, and exquisitely apparelled by nature…”
- Virginia Woolf, Orlando
03 9 / 2012
“The sky is blue,” he said, “the grass is green.” Looking up, he saw that, on the contrary, the sky is like the veils which a thousand Madonnas have let fall from their hair; and the grass fleets and darkens like a flight of girls fleeing the embraces of hairy satyrs from enchanted woods. “Upon my word,” he said (for he had fallen into the bad habit of speaking aloud), “I don’t see that one’s more true than another. Both are utterly false.” And he despaired of being able to solve the problem of what poetry is and what truth is and fell into a deep dejection.
-Virginia Woolf, Orlando
29 8 / 2012
"Are they remedial measures- trances in which the most galling memories, events that seem likely to cripple life for ever, are brushed with a dark wing which rubs their harshness off and gilds them, even the ugliest, and basest, with a lustre, and incandescence? Has the finger of death to be laid on the tumult of life from time to time lest it rend us asunder? Are we so made that we have to take death in small doses daily or we could not go on with the business of living?"
09 7 / 2012
"Happiness is in the quiet, ordinary things. A table, a chair, a book with a paper-knife stuck between the pages. And the petal falling from the rose, and the light flickering as we sit silent."