Life has been your art. You have set yourself to music. Your days are your sonnets.
' it used to be called, even by Jews. 'The Jewish Question.' I find I quite like this interrogative formulation, since the question as Gertrude Stein once famously if terminally put it may be more absorbing than the answer. Of course one is flirting with calamity in phrasing things this way, as I learned in school when the Irish question was discussed by some masters as the Irish 'problem.' Again, the word 'solution' can be as neutral as the words 'question' or 'problem,' but once one has defined a people or a nation as such, the search for a resolution can become a yearning for the conclusive. : the final solution.
Music makes me forget myself, my true condition, it carries me off into another state of being, one that isn't my own: under the influence of music I have the illusion of feeling things I don't really feel, of understanding things I don't understand, being able to do things I'm not able to do (...) Can it really be allowable for anyone who feels like it to hypnotize another person, or many other persons, and then do what he likes with them? Particularly if the hypnotist is the first unscrupulous individual who happens to come along?
But what is the good of friendship if one cannot say exactly what one means? Anybody can say charming things and try to please and to flatter, but a true friend always says unpleasant things, and does not mind giving pain. Indeed, if he is a really true friend he prefers it, for he knows that then he is doing good.
Since that deluge of newspaper articles I have been so flooded with questions, invitations, suggestions, that I keep dreaming I am roasting in Hell, and the mailman is the devil eternally yelling at me, showering me with more bundles of letters at my head because I have not answered the old ones.
It was expected, however, that [Erasmus] should make some reply and give some definition. But instead, by availing himself of a rhetorical transition, he drags us who knew nothing of rhetoric away with him, as if the matter at issue here were of no moment, but simply a lot of quibbling, and dashes bravely out of the crowded court, crowned with ivy and laurel.
We can imagine the books we'd like to read, even if they have not yet been written, and we can imagine libraries full of books we would like to possess, even if they are well beyond our reacher, because we enjoy dreaming up a library that reflects every one of our interests and every one of our foibles--a library that, in its variety and complexity, fully reflects the reader we are.