Wordsworth Quotes

Quotes tagged as "wordsworth" Showing 1-24 of 24
Helen Bevington
“The seasonal urge is strong in poets. Milton wrote chiefly in winter. Keats looked for spring to wake him up (as it did in the miraculous months of April and May, 1819). Burns chose autumn. Longfellow liked the month of September. Shelley flourished in the hot months. Some poets, like Wordsworth, have gone outdoors to work. Others, like Auden, keep to the curtained room. Schiller needed the smell of rotten apples about him to make a poem. Tennyson and Walter de la Mare had to smoke. Auden drinks lots of tea, Spender coffee; Hart Crane drank alcohol. Pope, Byron, and William Morris were creative late at night. And so it goes.”
Helen Bevington, When Found, Make a Verse of

William Wordsworth
“What we have loved, others will love, and we will teach them how; instruct them how the mind of man becomes a thousand times more beautiful than the earth on which he dwells...”
William Wordsworth, Lyrical Ballads

William Wordsworth
“I wandered lonely as a cloud
That floats on high o'er vales and hills
When all at once I saw a crowd
A host of golden daffodils
Beside the lake beneath the trees
Fluttering and dancing in the breeze.”
William Wordsworth, I Wander'd Lonely as a Cloud

William Wordsworth
“In ourselves our safety must be sought.
By our own right hand it must be wrought.”
William Wordsworth

P.G. Wodehouse
“Mr Wisdom,' said the girl who had led him into the presence.
'Ah,' said Howard Saxby, and there was a pause of perhaps three minutes, during which his needles clicked busily. 'Wisdom, did she say?'
'Yes. I wrote "Cocktail Time"'
'You couldn't have done better,' said Mr Saxby cordially. 'How's your wife, Mr Wisdom?'
Cosmo said he had no wife.
"I'm a bachelor.'
Then Wordsworth was wrong. He said you were married to immortal verse. Excuse me a moment,' murmured Mr Saxby, applying himself to the sock again. 'I'm just turning the heel. Do you knit?'
'Sleep does. It knits the ravelled sleave of care.'

(After a period of engrossed knitting, Cosmo coughs loudly to draw attention to his presence.)
'Goodness, you made me jump!' he (Saxby) said. 'Who are you?'
'My name, as I have already told you, is Wisdom'
'How did you get in?' asked Mr Saxby with a show of interest.
'I was shown in.'
'And stayed in. I see, Tennyson was right. Knowledge comes, but Wisdom lingers. Take a chair.'
'I have.'
'Take another,' said Mr Saxby hospitably.”
P.G. Wodehouse

Anderson Cooper
“The rainbow comes and goes. Enjoy it while it lasts. Don't be surprised by its departure, and rejoice when it returns.”
Anderson Cooper, The Rainbow Comes and Goes: A Mother and Son on Life, Love, and Loss

Germany Kent
“Your words control your life, your progress, your results, even your mental and physical health. You cannot talk like a failure and expect to be successful.”
Germany Kent

Pico Iyer
“Everyone is a Wordsworth in certain moods, and every traveler seeks out places that every traveler has missed.”
Pico Iyer, Falling Off the Map: Some Lonely Places of the World

William Wordsworth
“we not only wish to be pleased, but to be pleased in that particular
way in which we have been accustomed to be pleased.”
William Wordsworth, Preface to the Lyrical Ballads

Brigid Brophy
“When sonneteering Wordsworth re-creates the landing of Mary Queen of Scots at the mouth of the Derwent -

Dear to the Loves, and to the Graces vowed,
The Queen drew back the wimple that she wore

- he unveils nothing less than a canvas by Rubens, baroque master of baroque masters; this is the landing of a TRAGIC Marie de Medicis.
Yet so receptive was the English ear to sheep-Wordsworth's perverse 'Enough of Art' that it is not any of these works of supreme art, these master-sonnets of English literature, that are sold as picture postcards, with the text in lieu of the view, in the Lake District! it is those eternally, infernally sprightly Daffodils.”
Brigid Brophy, Fifty Works of English Literature We Could Do Without

Christopher Hitchens
“Offered a job as book critic for Time magazine as a young man, Bellow had been interviewed by Chambers and asked to give his opinion about William Wordsworth. Replying perhaps too quickly that Wordsworth had been a Romantic poet, he had been brusquely informed by Chambers that there was no place for him at the magazine. Bellow had often wondered, he told us, what he ought to have said. I suggested that he might have got the job if he'd replied that Wordsworth was a once-revolutionary poet who later became a conservative and was denounced by Browning and others as a turncoat. This seemed to Bellow to be probably right. More interesting was the related question: What if he'd kept that job?”
Christopher Hitchens, Hitch 22: A Memoir

William Wordsworth
“From heart-experience, and in humblest sense
Of Modesty, that he, who in his youth
A daily wanderer among woods and fields
With living Nature hath been intimate,
Not only in that raw unpractised time
Is stirred to ecstasy, as others are,
By glittering verse but further, doth receive,
In measure only dealt out to himself,
Knowledge and increase of enduring joy
From the great Nature that exists in works
Of mighty Poets.”
William Wordsworth

William Wordsworth
“To them I may have owed another gift,
Of aspect more sublime; that blessed mood,
In which the burthen of the mystery,
In which the heavy and the weary weight
Of all this unintelligible world,
Is lightened:—that serene and blessed mood,
In which the affections gently lead us on,—
Until, the breath of this corporeal frame
And even the motion of our human blood
Almost suspended, we are laid asleep
In body, and become a living soul:
While with an eye made quiet by the power
Of harmony, and the deep power of joy,
We see into the life of things.”
William Wordsworth, Lines composed a few miles above Tintern Abbey

Margaret Irwin
“Tonight, however, Dickens struck him in a different light. Beneath the author’s sentimental pity for the weak and helpless, he could discern a revolting pleasure in cruelty and suffering, while the grotesque figures of the people in Cruikshank’s illustrations revealed too clearly the hideous distortions of their souls. What had seemed humorous now appeared diabolic, and in disgust at these two favourites he turned to Walter Pater for the repose and dignity of a classic spirit.

But presently he wondered if this spirit were not in itself of a marble quality, frigid and lifeless, contrary to the purpose of nature. ‘I have often thought’, he said to himself, ‘that there is something evil in the austere worship of beauty for its own sake.’ He had never thought so before, but he liked to think that this impulse of fancy was the result of mature consideration, and with this satisfaction he composed himself for sleep.

He woke two or three times in the night, an unusual occurrence, but he was glad of it, for each time he had been dreaming horribly of these blameless Victorian works…

It turned out to be the Boy’s Gulliver’s Travels that Granny had given him, and Dicky had at last to explain his rage with the devil who wrote it to show that men were worse than beasts and the human race a washout. A boy who never had good school reports had no right to be so morbidly sensitive as to penetrate to the underlying cynicism of Swift’s delightful fable, and that moreover in the bright and carefully expurgated edition they bring out nowadays. Mr Corbett could not say he had ever noticed the cynicism himself, though he knew from the critical books it must be there, and with some annoyance he advised his son to take out a nice bright modern boy’s adventure story that could not depress anybody.

Mr Corbett soon found that he too was ‘off reading’. Every new book seemed to him weak, tasteless and insipid; while his old and familiar books were depressing or even, in some obscure way, disgusting. Authors must all be filthy-minded; they probably wrote what they dared not express in their lives. Stevenson had said that literature was a morbid secretion; he read Stevenson again to discover his peculiar morbidity, and detected in his essays a self-pity masquerading as courage, and in Treasure Island an invalid’s sickly attraction to brutality.

This gave him a zest to find out what he disliked so much, and his taste for reading revived as he explored with relish the hidden infirmities of minds that had been valued by fools as great and noble. He saw Jane Austen and Charlotte Brontë as two unpleasant examples of spinsterhood; the one as a prying, sub-acid busybody in everyone else’s flirtations, the other as a raving, craving maenad seeking self-immolation on the altar of her frustrated passions. He compared Wordsworth’s love of nature to the monstrous egoism of an ancient bellwether, isolated from the flock.”
Margaret Irwin, Bloodstock and Other Stories

William Wordsworth

- Our birth is but a dream and a forgetting (Wordsworth)

- ...so schläft er sehr rasch wieder ein, und schon nach vierundzwanzig Stunden ist es, als sei man niet weg gewesen und als sei die Reise der Traum einer Nacht. (Thomas Mann)

- Thetis baptized her mortal son in Styx;
A mortal mother would on Lethe fix. (Byron)”
William Wordsworth, Ode: Intimations of Immortality from Recollections of Early Childhood

Michael Bassey Johnson
“The sub-conscious mind is so powerful in such a way that even if you empty your mind of all its components, there will be a little thought; it is synonymous to a well informed person who can never be deformed.”
Michael Bassey Johnson

“In all ages woman has been the source of all that is pure, unselfish, and heroic in the spirit and life of man.....poetry and fiction are based upon woman's love, and the movements of history are mainly due to the sentiments or ambitions she has inspired......there is no aspiration which any man here to-night entertains, no achievement he seeks to accomplish, no great and honorable ambition he desires to gratify, which is not directly related to either or both a mother or a wife. From the hearth-stone around which linger the recollections of our mother, from the fireside where our wife awaits us, come all the purity, all the hope, and all the courage with which we fight the battle of life. The man who is not thus inspired, who labors not so much to secure the applause of the world as the solid and more precious approval of his home, accomplishes little of good for others or of honor for himself. I close with the hope that each of us may always have near us:

'A perfect woman, nobly planned,
To warn, to comfort, and command,
And yet a spirit still, and bright
With something of an angel light.”
Chauncey M. Depew

Harry Whitewolf
“I wandered lonely as a cunt.”
Harry Whitewolf, The Gulag Village Green

Edgar Allan Poe
“Is it sympathy for the sheep you wish to excite? I love a sheep from the bottom of my heart...”
Edgar Allan Poe, The Fall of the House of Usher and Other Tales

Bertrand Russell
“Children were idealized by Wordsworth and un-idealized by Freud. Marx was the Wordsworth of the proletariat; its Freud is still to come.”
Bertrand Russell, Unpopular Essays

“It may fairly be urged that most writing about the history and theory of architecture should be as modest in language and recessive in tone as the writing about its science. You can after all draw effective attention to something special or beautiful without making a song and dance about it. Nor should you try to edge it out of the picture you are drawing. But if Adrian’s notion is true, and buildings and words are complementary, there must be occasions when the writing rises to meet the architecture and does not stand too abjectly in its shadow. The reason why Ruskin and Nairn at their best or, to take two other examples at random, Goethe on Strasbourg Cathedral and Wordsworth on King’s College Chapel, Cambridge, are so exciting and moving is because they have the guts to try and respond to, even emulate, what they are talking about.”
Iain Borden, Forty Ways to Think About Architecture: Architectural History and Theory Today

Jarod Kintz
“What are words worth if you write like Wordsworth? Not as much as a man named Wordsandpicturesworth. That's so long, so I just call him Memesworth.”
Jarod Kintz, 94,000 Wasps in a Trench Coat

Leonardo Sciascia
“Vale la pena soffermarci su quest’incubo [della fine della letteratura e delle arti], per come Borges ce lo racconta in una sua conversazione sui sogni e gli incubi.
Il terribile sogno è del poeta inglese William Wordsworth e si trova nel secondo [rectius: quinto] libro del poema The Prelude — un poema autobiografico, come dice il sottotitolo. Fu pubblicato nel 1850, l’anno stesso della morte del poeta. Allora non si pensava, come invece oggi, a un possibile cataclisma cosmico che annientasse ogni grande opera umana, se non l’umanità interamente.
Ma Wordsworth ne ebbe la preoccupazione e, in sogno, la visione.
Ed ecco come Borges l’assume e riassume nel suo discorso: “Nel sogno la sabbia lo circonda, un Sahara di sabbia nera. Non c’è acqua, non c’è mare. Sta al centro del deserto — nel deserto si sta sempre al centro — ed è ossessionato dal pensiero di come fare per sfuggire al deserto, quando vede qualcuno vicino a lui. Stranamente, è un arabo della tribù dei beduini, che cavalca un cammello e ha nella mano destra una lancia.
Sotto il braccio sinistro ha una pietra; nella mano una conchiglia. L’arabo gli dice che ha la missione di salvare le arti e le scienze e gli avvicina la conchiglia all’orecchio; la conchiglia è di straordinaria bellezza. Wordsworth ci dice che ascoltò la profezia (‘in una lingua che non conoscevo ma che capii’): una specie di ode appassionata, che profetizzava che la Terra era sul punto di essere distrutta dal diluvio che l’ira di Dio mandava. L’arabo gli dice che è vero, che il diluvio si avvicina, ma che egli ha una missione: salvare l’arte e le scienze. Gli mostra la pietra. La pietra, stranamente, è la Geometria di Euclide pur rimanendo una pietra. Poi gli avvicina la conchiglia, che è anche un libro: è quello che gli ha detto quelle cose terribili. La conchiglia è, anche, tutta la poesia del mondo, compreso, perche' no?, il poema di Wordsworth.
Il beduino gli dice: ‘Devo salvare queste due cose, la pietra e la conchiglia, entrambi libri’. Volge il viso all’indietro, e vi è un momento in cui Wordsworth vede che il volto del beduino cambia, si riempie di orrore. Anche lui si volge e vede una gran luce, una luce che ha inondato metà del deserto. Questa luce è quella dell’acqua del diluvio che sta per sommergere la Terra. Il beduino si allontana e Wordsworth vede che è anche don Chisciotte, che il cammello è anche Ronzinante e che allo stesso modo che la pietra è il libro e la conchiglia il libro, il beduino è don Chisciotte e nessuna delle due cose ed entrambe nello stesso tempo”...
l’immagine di don Chisciotte che si allontana invincibilmente richiama quella dipinta da Daumier, forse contemporaneamente. E ci è lecito, in aura borgesiana, chiederci se il poeta e il pittore non abbiano fatto lo stesso sogno.”
Leonardo Sciascia, Ore di Spagna