No poet is ever completely lost. He has the secret of his childhood safe with him, like some secret cave in which he can kneel. And, when we read his poetry, we can join him there. Peter Ackroyd
Old age is second childhood. Aristophanes
Nubes ( The Clouds), l.1417.
Childhood is measured out by sounds and smells And sights, before the dark of reason grows. SirJohn Betjeman
Summoned By Bells, ch.4.
But childhood prolonged cannot remain a fairy-land. It becomes a hell. Louise Bogan
On Katherine Mansfield.'Childhood's False Eden'.
We wove a web in childhood, A web of sunny air; We dug a spring in infancy Of water pure and fair; We sowed in youth a mustard seed, We cut an almond rod; We are now grown up to riper age Are they withered in the sod? Charlotte Bronte«
'We Wove a Web in Childhood'.
Remember your own childhood. That complete certainty you had, looking at the grown-ups, that you would never be like that. It was a lonely feeling, but euphoric, too. Jane Campion
Interview with Sarah Gristwood in The Times Magazine, 'Jane Campion: A Childhood',1 Jan.
I long for scenes where man hath never trod A place where woman never smiled or wept There to abide with my Creator God And sleep as I in childhood sweetly slept, Untroubling and untroubled where I lie The grass below, above, the vaulted sky. John Clare
Do you know anyone who wouldsecretly, sincerely, in his innermost selfreally prefer to return to childhood? Anita ne e Mazumbar Desai
The Clear Light of Day, ch.1.
If I could only live at the pitch that is near madness When everything is as it was in my childhood Violent, vivid and of infinite possibility. Richard Ghormley Eberhart
'If I Could Only Live at the Pitch That Is Near Madness'.
and Ireally hopeno white person ever has causetowrite about me because they never understand Black love is Black wealth and they'll probably talk about my hard childhood and never understand that all the while I was quite happy Nikki in full Yolande CorneliaGiovanni,Jr Giovanni
You lost yourability for doing things in childhood It all beganwithyourinability toputonyoursocksand ended by your inability to live. Ivan Alexandrovich Goncharov
Oblomov, pt.4, ch.2 (translated by David Magarshak).
There is always one moment in childhood when the door opens and lets the future in. (Henry) Graham Greene
The Power and the Glory, pt.1, ch.1.
From his childhood onward this boy will be surrounded by sycophants and flatterers by the score, and will be taught to believe himself as of a superior creation. A line will be drawn between him and the people whom he is to be called upon some day to reign over. In due course, following the precedent which has already been set, he will be sent on a tour round the world, and probably rumours of a morganatic alliancewill follow, and the end of it all will bethattheCountry will be calledupontopay the bill. (James) Keir Hardie
Speech in the House of Commons, 28 Jun, opposing an Address of Congratulation to the Queen being passed in the House of Commons, on the birth of a son (the future Edward VIII) to the Duke and Duchess ofYork.
What we've doneinthis country inthepast fewdecades is socialize the cost of growing old and privatize the cost of childhood. Sylvia Ann Hewlett
In the Washington Post, 22 Feb.
I believe that the experience of childhood is irretrievable. All that remains, foranyof us, is a handful of brilliant frozen moments, already dangerously distorted by the wisdoms of maturity. Penelope (Margaret) Lively
Oleander, Jacaranda, preface.
Worse than the ordinary miserable childhood is the miserable Irish childhood, and worse yet isthemiserable Irish Catholic childhood. Frank McCourt
Angela's Ashes, ch.1.
In my childhood trees were green And there was plenty to be seen. Come back early or never come. (Frederick) Louis MacNeice
Plant and Phantom,'Autobiography', l.1^3.
Is it not possible that the rage for confession, autobiography, especially for memories of earliest childhood, is explained by our persistent yet mysterious belief in a self which is continuous and permanent; which, untouched by all we acquire and all we shed, pushes a green spear through the dead leaves and throughthemould, thrusts a scaled bud through years of darkness until, one day, the light discovers it and shakes the flower free andwe are alivewe are flowering for our moment upon the earth? This is the moment which after all, we live forthe moment of direct feeling when we are most ourselves and least personal. Beauchamp
Journal entry, Apr.
For some time I watch the coming of the night Above is the glistening galaxy of childhood, now hidden in the Western world by air pollution and the glare of artificial light; for my children's children, the power, peace and healing of the night will be obliterated. Peter Matthiessen
Of the night sky in Nepal. The Snow Leopard,'Northward, October18'.
Childhood is not from birth to a certain age and at a certain age The child isgrown, and puts away childish things. Childhood is the kingdom where nobody dies. Nobody that matters, that is. Edna St Vincent Millay
Wine From These Grapes,'Childhood is the Kingdom where Nobody dies'.
The childhood shows the man, As morning shows the day. Be famous then By wisdom; as thy empire must extend, So let extend thy mind o'er all the world. John Milton
Paradise Regained, bk.4, l.220^3.
Held in the custody of childhood is a locked chest; the adolescent, byonemeans oranother, triestoopenit. the chest is opened: inside, there is nothing. Yukio pseudonym of Hiraoka Kimitake Mishima
Acts ofWorship,'Cigarette' (translated byJohn Bester,1989).
Down here it was still the England I had known in my childhood:all sleeping the deep, deep sleep of England, fromwhich Isometimesfear that weshall never wake till we are jerked out of it by the roar of bombs. George pseudonym of Eric Arthur Blair Orwell
Homage to Catalonia, ch.14.
The books one reads in childhood, and perhaps most of all the bad and good bad books, create in one's mind a sort of false map of the world, a series of fabulous countries into which one can retreat at odd moments throughout the rest of life, and which in some cases can even survive a visit to the real countries which they are supposed to represent. George pseudonym of Eric Arthur Blair Orwell
'Riding Down from Bangor'.
All those writers who write about their childhood! Gentle God, if I wrote about mine you wouldn't sit in the same room with me. Dorothy ne e Rothschild Parker
In the Paris Review, Summer.
Ich habe um meine Kindheit gebeten, und sie ist wiedergekommen, und ich fu« hle, dass sie immer noch so schwer ist wie damals, und dass es nichts genu« tzt hat, a« lter zu werden. I prayed to rediscover my childhood, and it has come back, and I feel that it is just as difficult as it used to be, and that growing older has served no purpose at all. 687 Rainer Maria Rilke
DieAufzeichnungen des Malte Laurids Brigge (translated by Stephen Mitchell in The Selected Poetry of Rainer Maria Rilke, 1989).
In ancient shadows and twilights Where childhood had strayed, The world's great sorrows were born And its heroes were made. In the lost boyhood of Judas, Christ was betrayed. GeorgeWilliam pseudonym Ã“ Russell
Enchantment and Other Poems,'Germinal'.
Hab|a un solo t u nel, oscuro y solitario: el m|o, el t u nel en que hab|a transcurrido mi infancia, mi juventud, toda mi vida Yentonces, mientras yo avanzaba siempre por mi pasadizo, ella viv|a afuera su vida normal, la vida agitada que llevan esas gentes que viven afuera. There was only one tunnel, dark and solitary: mine, the tunnel in which I had spent my childhood, my youth, my entire life And then, while I kept moving through my passageway, she lived her normal life outside, the exciting life of people who live outside. Ernesto Sa bato
El tu nel, ch.36 (translated asThe Outsider,1950).
If you really want to hear about it, the first thing you'll probably wantto know iswhere Iwasborn, and what my lousy childhood was like, and how my parents were occupied and all before they had me, and all that David Copperfield kind ofcrap, but Idon't feel likegoing into it. J(erome) D(avid) Salinger
The Catcher in the Rye, ch.1.
She was cut off fromthe past and therefore did not live in the present. But suddenly, as she stood close against a pine tree and breathed in its sharp, bitter scent, a clear space opened to her childhood, as though a wind had sprung fromthesea, clearing a mist.It wasnot a memory from the past, it was the past itself, as alive, as real; and she knew that she and the child of forty years ago were the same person. D(onald) M(itchell) Thomas
TheWhite Hotel, ch.4.
We seem but to linger in manhood to tell the dreams of our childhood, and they vanish out of memory ere we learn the language. Henry David Thoreau
Journal entry,19 Feb.
Men, indeed, appear to me to act in a very unphilosophical manner when they try to secure the good conduct of women by attempting to keep them always in a state of childhood. Mary also known as Mrs Godwin WollstonecraftSearch Quotes Webster's New World Dictionary of Quotations Copyright © 2010 by Chambers Harrap Publishers Ltd. All rights reserved. Published by Wiley, Hoboken, NJ. Used by arrangement with John Wiley & Sons, Inc.
AVindication of the Rights ofWoman, pt.1, ch.2.
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