Why I Like Quotes. So Much

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The Irish writer Josephine Hart (1942 – 2011), who was fiercely passionate about poetry and about bringing it to a wider audience, said of the literary medium she loved:

“Poetry, this trinity of sound, sense and sensibility, to me gives voice to experience like no other literary art form. It has been a source of joy, sometimes a lifeline. At various times it has given me a key to understanding, expressed what I believed inexpressible, provided me, as a girl with no sense of direction, with a route map through life.”

Her words illuminate the spellbinding power of poetry and its life enhancing and life saving capacity. They also remind me that we are without a navigation system to help us plot a course as we weave our way across life’s uncharted waters.

I haven’t read enough poetry for it to be my lodestar. However quotes, when the sentiments they contain resonate, have sometimes served as my guides by helping me to set my moral compass and by throwing light back on the paths I have trodden thus far.

It may seem strange to have those pathways lit retrospectively but I think what we often most need (or at least I do) is something to help us to knit together the jigsaw pieces of our past so that we can put them into perspective in the present in order to forge a future out of our yesterdays.

The quotes that I love have a way of expressing some of the things I feel but don’t have the words to articulate. So when it comes to putting the past into perspective my favourite quote is.

“Life can only be understood backwards but must be lived forwards.”
Soren Kierkegaard 1813 – 1855

I hope you have a good week.

16 Comments

Filed under Favourite Quotes, Musings

16 responses to “Why I Like Quotes. So Much

  1. I love quotes, sometimes when I cannot express something a quote is the best way to get the point across. With regards to poetry, I do like it very much but am not really that familiar with many poets, I do have great admiration for them and their incredible talent.

    • Quotes are such interesting and useful things. They can act as a type of shorthand for me, as I could spend hundreds of words trying to say what the right quote gets across in a couple of lines.

      I like poetry too but like you I am not familiar with too many poets. πŸ˜‰

  2. One of my favourite quotes is from Peanuts and is on a mug I bought for my son when he was little…Winning may not be everything, but losing isn’t anything. A sense of humour always helps.

  3. A future out of our yesterdays, I like that.

  4. “It may seem strange to have those pathways lit retrospectively but I think what we often most need (or at least I do) is something to help us to knit together the jigsaw pieces of our past so that we can put them into perspective in the present in order to forge a future out of our yesterdays.” This is one of the most articulate things I have read all day! Makes a great quote. πŸ™‚

  5. I love your final quote, what a wonderfully true statement! Quotes do indeed have a special way of expressing what we can’t always put into words ourselves.

  6. I love quotes too. I am a total literary geek. Every time I go to Dublin I have to go back to the writers museum. Emily Dickinson is probably my favourite poet. Seamus Heaney would be my favourite Irish poet. Emma xx

  7. Thanks Emma for your comment. I love the Emily Dickinson’s poems too, or I should say those of them that I have read. I think the house where she once lived is now open as museum and I would love to go and see one day. B xx

  8. I agree with you and I’ve found that quotes can be very comforting and also apply to so many situations over the years… πŸ™‚

  9. Oh, I could never choose a favorite quote. It would be like choosing a favorite child. This one makes me laugh; this one is tender-hearted; this one is witty…

    I also love poetry. I’ll have to look up Josephine Hart. She is the same age as so many famous American poets, and American poets get the spotlight in American reviews and publications, always overshadowing the Irish, Scottish, and English.

    Going to google her right now (thank you for the lead…)

    • Hello Tracy, I realized when I read your comment that I hadn’t made it clear that Josephine Hart was a novelist rather than a poet. (her best know book is Damage which was made into a film of the same name). So sorry about that.

      There are so many great quotes out there and it is good that can elicit so many differing emotions. πŸ˜‰

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