If happiness comes at all: which is by no means prearranged; it comes by the way, while you are seeking for something else. Something outside yourself, beyond yourself: in a brief absorption of self-forgetfulness.
Sex divorced from love is the thief of personal dignity.
One should never go back to a place one has loved; for, however, rough the going forward is, it is better than the snuffing out-of-love return.
When the desire is on for one particular person, nobody else will do.
So it is useless to evade reality, because it only makes it more virulent in the end. But instead, look steadfastly into the slit, pin-pointed, malignant eyes of reality: as an old-hand trainer dominates his wild beasts. Take it by the scruff of the neck, and shake the evil intent out of it; till it rattles out harmlessly, like gall bladder stones, fossilized on the floor.
But the true evil of drink lies in the disillusion: that the initial pleasure very soon evaporates, leaving a demoralizing craving for more, which is not even temporarily pleasurable. Which then leads to deterioration of the faculties of both body and mind; plus a bewildering lack of co-operation between the two.
there is no gaiety as gay as the gaiety of grief.
there is this malign curse laid on dipsomaniacs. That they must absolutely have a drink: in order to feel strong enough to stop drinking.
My bitterness is not an abstract substance, it is as solid as a Christmas cake; I can cut it in slices and hand it round and there is still plenty left, for tomorrow.
The wretched Artist himself is alternatively the lowest worm that ever crawled when no fire is in him; or the loftiest God that ever sand when the fire is going.
resignation, perhaps the most stifling word in the language.
England, where nobody ever says what they mean: and by denying feeling, kill it off stone-cold at the roots.
Virtue in a man doesn’t make you want to grab him.
I had got to the dawn of the beautiful not caring, but fully aware, stage, which degenerates so imperceptibly into the doing something unpermissible stage.
Between threading a needle and raving insanity is the smallest eye in creation.
Fearful as reality is, it is less fearful than evasions of reality. Look steadfastly into the slit, pinpointed malignant eyes of reality as an old-hand trainer dominates his wild beasts.
anybody who drinks seriously is poor: so poor, poor, extra poor, me.
In America they make too much fuss of poets; in London they make too little.
… the mere thought of going near a man who is not mellowly pickled, and whose breath reeks of his native fleshy self, is squeamishly unpalatable to me.
none of what I know is out of books. … I prefer tactual learning. Touching, on the quick of the sore nail, of present, mobile life. To toy, to gnaw, to tear: at the living element of pain. Like at a living drumstick.
I am unable, mentally incapable, of relating the dead thing, the broken body refusing to divulge why or where the occupant has gone, to the thing that was alive.
A lot of warm vulgarity is incomparably preferable to a little bit of pinched niceness
Jealousy is the lifelong noose hanging about the neck of love.
There is nothing harder for an Artist than to retain his Artistic integrity in the tomb of success. A tomb, nevertheless, which nearly every Artist: whether he admits it or not; naturally wants to get into.
Anybody who thinks there is any vague chance of adult exchange with a child is up the spout; and would be much less disappointed if they recognized the chasm unbridgeably dividing them.