Bons Mots

Cover of "Walking a Literary Labyrinth"

Cover of Walking a Literary Labyrinth

Do you wonder if you will ever be quoted? Will you ever have something so astute or stunningly beautiful to say that your bons mots will be worthy of repetition?

I wrote a short essay in this blog that started with a quote from myself, so that if no one else ever quotes me, I have been quoted (that counts in my books if not yours).

Here are a few of my favourite quotes gleaned from various sources. I  am a collector of quotes and have several journals filled with them, so I thought I might share a few.

My definition of life is aptly defined by Adair Lara in her book “Naked, Drunk and Writing”.  She said that she read it somewhere. Without further ado (drum roll please):“It’s all very hard, but there’s a lot of collateral beauty along the way.”

This quote can be directly attributed to Lara: “She painted in all the shadows; but I remember the sunshine.”

William Faulkner sums up how I approach writing: “I never know what I think about something until I’ve read what I’ve written on it.”

English: Portrait of Virginia Woolf

English: Portrait of Virginia Woolf (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

And  this from Virginia Woolf on the love of reading.  It is from her essay, “How One Should Read a Book”:

“Yet who reads to bring about an end, however desirable? Are there not some pursuits that we practice because they are good in themselves, and some pleasures that are final? And is this not among them? I have sometimes dreamt, at least, that when the Day of Judgment dawns and the great conquerors and lawyers and statesmen come to receive their reward—their crowns, their laurels, their names carved indelibly upon imperishable marble – the Almighty will turn to Peter and say, not without a certain envy when he sees us coming with our books under our arms, “Look, these need no reward. We have nothing to give here. They have loved reading”.”

I find the words of Nancy Malone, from her book “Walking a Literary Labyrinth, A Spirituality of Reading” astute, smart even : “…literature can crystallize our knowledge of ourselves.”

To dispel any seriousness which this post may have wrought, I leave you with my very favourite words of wisdom:

“Candy is dandy, but liquor is quicker.”  ~ Ogden Nash

Ogden Nash

Ogden Nash (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Do you have a favourite quote that is on the tip of your tongue for sophisticated chatter? Nash’s poem is my contribution to any cocktail hour that starts with the words—“Well, it is five o’clock somewhere.”

Published in: on June 20, 2012 at 10:37 pm  Comments (22)  
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22 CommentsLeave a comment

  1. Oh, how I love Ogden Nash’s poems.. Right now, one of my fav quotes is a snippet of a Matthew Good lyric, “Murphy’s fighting Occam, you’re in the stands”. I think much of life is a battle between Murphy’s Law and Occams Razor.

    I somehow doubt I’ll ever be quoted for anything other than things that start with, “but mom said!”.

    • and if it is anything like what happens at my house, the “mom said” is never good
      what is Occams Razor?

      • The rule or law that says the simplest answer is usually the right answer.

      • good rule – will use it in a column for the paper–which means you will eventually see it on my blog

  2. I had this idea the other day of quoting other bloggers here and there in my own posts – send me one of your own quotes and I will do it!

  3. Awesome post! Here’s one of my favorites: “Be yourself. Everyone else is taken.” – Oscar Wilde.

    I doubt I will ever be quoted either unless someone wants me to eat my words! LOL

    • hey, I like that – Oscar was such a rascal wasn’t he?
      I like your second statement – think I will use it–then you will have been quoted and I will have something clever to work off of

      • LOL! Go for it!!

  4. “Life isn’t about waiting for the storm to pass, it’s about dancing in the rain.” I don’t know who said it but I like it.

  5. Oh, I love the Ogden Nash quote too! Excellent. I love your idea of keeping a diary of quotes. I’ve just received a new notebook as a gift and I think I will use it to that end. Thanks for sharing your quotes, really enjoyed them.

    • Glad to have been a little inspiration – I go back and read and use mine all the time – it is a nice hobby.

  6. here are a couple of pithy ones by Mae West: ‘too much of a good thing can be wonderful” and “You only live once, but if you do it right,, once is enough!” cheers and thanks for the quotes! SB

    • love them – words to definitely live by – I think she did – must add these to my books of quotes – cheers to you and thank for the additions to my hobby

  7. “Never miss a good chance to shut up.”
    ― Will Rogers

    when it comes to quotes you gotta love Will Rogers.

    • so true and so missed by many – am thrilled that you are now commenting!

      • Haha! I love that one! So funny!


      • I am assuming you like Ogden’s little ditty – me too!

  8. I absolutely love ”literature can crystallize our knowledge of ourselves.” I never realized it but I must say – it is true! One of my favorite quote is from avatar that said : life is only borrowed energy we one day have to give back” – I think I need to watch that movie again 😉

    Great blog post!

  9. […] Bons Mots ( […]

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