Facts are to the mind what food is to the body.
I am the camera's eye. I am the machine that shows you the world as I alone see it. Starting from today I am forevcr free of human immobility. I am in perpetual movement. I approach and draw away from things--I crawl under them--I climb on them--I am on the head of a galloping horse
Mayakovsky has an essay called How to Write Poems where he says that a poet must spend time and effort choosing the uniquely appropriate words, force them into the rhythm of the poem and then test it out loud ten times or more. Vertov did something very similar at the editing table. A hundred tests, a thousand different variants, endless numbers of try-outs--for meaning, for imagery, for rhythm--and finally, after long intensive efforts, that feeling of joy: it works. . .
The Americans who are the most efficient people on earth...have invented so wide a range of pithy and hackneyed phrases that they can carry on a...conversation without giving a moment's reflection to what they are saying and so leave their minds free to consider more important matters of big business and fornication.
Collecting quotations is an insidious, even embarrassing habit, like ragpicking or hoarding rocks or trying on other people's laundry. I got into it originally while trying to break an addiction to candy. I kicked candy and now seem to be stuck with quotations, which are attacking my brain instead of my teeth.
And really, the reason we think of death in celestial terms is that the visible firmament, especially at night (above our blacked-out Paris with the gaunt arches of its Boulevard Exelmans and the ceaseless Alpine gurgle of desolate latrines), is the most adequate and ever-present symbol of that vast silent explosion.
Then the enchantment became more dreamlike, until he felt that an endless river of swelling gold and silver was flowing over him, too multitudinous for its pattern to be comprehended; it became part of the throbbing air about him, and it drenched and drowned him. Swiftly he sank under its shining weight into a deep realm of sleep.
He who sleeps here, when dying, mistaking the approach of death for the return of health, whispered with his latest breath, I am better now. Let us believe, in spite of doubts and dogmas, of fears and tears, that these dear words are true of all the countless dead.The record of a generous life runs like a vine around the memory of our dead, and every sweet, unselfish act is now a perfumed flower.
Science fiction is the most important literature in the history of the world, because it's the history of ideas, the history of our civilization birthing itself. ...Science fiction is central to everything we've ever done, and people who make fun of science fiction writers don't know what they're talking about.
And now, these books. This. He touched PHYSIOGNOMONIE. The secrets of the individual's character as found on his face. Were Jim and Will, then, featured all angelic, pure, half-innocent, peering up through the sidewalk at marching terror? Did the boys represent the ideal for your Woman, Man, or Child of Excellent Bearing, Color, Balance, and Summer Disposition?Converserly...Charles Halloway turned a page...did the scurrying freaks, the Illustrated Marvel, bear the foreheads of the Irascible, the Cruel, the Covetous, the mouths of the Lewd and Untruthful? the teeth of the Crafty, the Unstable, the Audacious, the Vainglorious, and your Marvelous Beast?No. The book slipped shut. If faces were judged, the freaks were no worse than many he'd been slipping from the liberty late nights in his long career.There was only one thing sure.Two lines of Shakespeare said it. He should write them in the middle of the clock of books, to fix the heart of his apprehension:By the pricking of my thumbs,Something wicked this way comes.So vague yet so immense.He did not want to live with it.Yet he knew that, during this night, unless he lived with it very well, he might have to live with it for all the rest of his life.At the window he looked out and thought Jim, Will, are you coming? Will you get here?Waiting, his flesh took paleness from his bones.