Anna Akhmatova ~ Waking Dreams
Forgive me, that I manage badly,
Manage badly but live gloriously,
That I leave traces of myself in my songs,
That I appeared to you in waking dreams.”
― Anna Akhmatova, The Complete Poems

Anna Akhmatova. Slepnevo.1914
George Orwell ~ On Wisdom
“Every generation imagines itself to be more intelligent than the one that went before it, and wiser than the one that comes after it.”
― George Orwell
Virginia Woolf ~ On Life
“We live our lives, do whatever we do, and then we sleep. It's as simple and ordinary as that. A few jump out windows, or drown themselves, or take pills; more die by accident; and most of us are slowly devoured by some disease, or, if we're very fortunate, by time itself. There's just this for consolation: an hour here or there when our lives seem, against all odds & expectations, to burst open & give us everything we've ever imagined, though everyone but children (and perhaps even they) know these hours will inevitably be followed by others, far darker and more difficult. Still, we cherish the city, the morning, we hope, more than anything for more. Heaven only knows why we love it so.”
― Virginia Woolf
Virginia Woolf ~ The Sea
“The sigh of all the seas breaking in measure round the isles soothed them; the night wrapped them; nothing broke their sleep, until, the birds beginning and the dawn weaving their thin voices in to its whiteness”
― Virginia Woolf, To the Lighthouse
Karen Blixen ~ Consciousness Of Freedom
"It is when one begins to lose the consciousness of freedom, and when the idea of necessity enters the world at all, when there is any hurry or strain anywhere, a letter to be written or a train to catch, when you have got to work, to make the horses of the dream gallop, or to make the rifles go off, that the dream is declining, and turning into the nightmare, which belongs to the poorest and most vulgar class of dreams.”
― Karen Blixen, Out of Africa
Katherine Mansfield ~ I Want To Talk To Tchekov
“Ach, Tchekov! Why are you dead? Why can’t I talk to you in a big darkish room at late evening—where the light is green from the waving trees outside? I’d like to write a series of Heavens: that would be one.”
― Katherine Mansfield, Journal of Katherine Mansfield
Katherine Mansfield playing the cello, Queen's College, Harley Street, London, between 1903-1905
Irene Nemirovsky ~ A Feeling Of Solitude
“But she loved studying and books, the way other people love wine for its power to make you forget. What else did she have? She lived in a deserted, silent house. The sound of her own footsteps in the empty rooms, the silence of the cold streets beyond the closed windows, the rain and the snow, the early darkness, the green lamp beside her that burned throughout the long evenings and which she watched for hours on end until its light began to waver before her weary eyes: this was the setting for her life.”
― Irène Némirovsky, The Wine of Solitude
Zelda Fitzgerald ~ Loneliness
The sky lay over the city like a map showing the strata of things and the big full moon toppled over in a furrow like the abandoned wheel of a gun carriage on a sunset field of battle and the shadows walked like cats and I looked into the white and ghostly interior of things and thought of you and I looked on their structural outsides and thought of you and was lonesome.”
― Zelda Fitzgerald, Dear Scott, Dearest Zelda
Anais Nin ~ Are We Dead Or Alive?
“You live like this, sheltered, in a delicate world, and you believe you are living. Then you read a book… or you take a trip… and you discover that you are not living, that you are hibernating. The symptoms of hibernating are easily detectable: first, restlessness. The second symptom (when hibernating becomes dangerous and might degenerate into death): absence of pleasure. That is all. It appears like an innocuous illness. Monotony, boredom, death. Millions live like this (or die like this) without knowing it. They work in offices. They drive a car. They picnic with their families. They raise children. And then some shock treatment takes place, a person, a book, a song, and it awakens them and saves them from death. Some never awaken.”
― Anaïs Nin, The Diary of Anaïs Nin, Vol. 1: 1931-1934

Zaida Ben-Yúsuf: 'Portrait-Study', 1898
Sylvia Plath ~ I Want…
“I can never read all the books I want; I can never be all the people I want and live all the lives I want. I can never train myself in all the skills I want. And why do I want? I want to live and feel all the shades, tones and variations of mental and physical experience possible in life. And I am horribly limited.”
― Sylvia Plath