A baby is God's opinion that the world should go on.

I'm either going to be a writer or a bum.

Nothing happens... but first a dream.

Let a joy keep you. Reach out your hands and take it when it runs by.

I tell you the past is a bucket of ashes.

I have always felt that a woman has the right to treat the subject of her age with ambiguity until, perhaps, she passes into the realm of over ninety. Then it is better she be candid with herself and with the world.

In these times you have to be an optimist to open your eyes when you awake in the morning.

Valor is a gift. Those having it never know for sure whether they have it till the test comes. And those having it in one test never know for sure if they will have it when the next test comes.

Time is the most valuable coin in your life. You and you alone will determine how that coin will be spent. Be careful that you do not let other people spend it for you.

Yesterday and tomorrow cross and mix on the skyline. The two are lost in a purple haze. One forgets, one waits.

There was always the consolation that if I didn't like what I wrote I could throw it away or burn it.

I had been keeping an off eye on the advertising field, thinking I might become an idea man and a copywriter.

Thumbs understand the fingers better than the fingers understand the thumb. Sometimes the fingers feel sorry the thumb is not a finger. The thumb is needed more often than any of the fingers. Look close at any thumb and you see it is not proud. Each finger has two knuckles, a thumb only one knuckle, and they need each other.

Where was I going? I puzzled and wondered about it til I actually enjoyed the puzzlement and wondering.

He had ten hopes to your one.

Nothing happens unless first we dream.

I say now, by God, only fighters today will save the world.

Life is like an onion; you peel it off one layer at a time, and sometimes you weep.

I decided I would go to Chicago and try my luck as a writer after those eight months as a fireman.

I am an idealist. I don't know where I'm going, but I'm on my way.

I will be back soon if not sooner and when I come back I will return.

I couldn't see myself filling some definite niche in what is called a career. This was all misty.

There are men and women so lonely they believe God, too, is lonely.

My room for books and study or for sitting and thinking about nothing in particular to see what would happen was at the end of a hall.

Now I am here - now read me - give me a name.

Beware of advice—even this.

All human actions are equivalent... and all are on principle doomed to failure.

There are some people who can receive a truth by no other way than to have their understanding shocked and insulted.

Money is power, freedom, a cushion, the root of all evil, the sum of blessings.

I have become infected, now that I see how beautifully a book is coming out of all this.

In reply to the question What was it the last man on earth said Where is everybody.

Come and show me another city with lifted head singing so proud to be alive and coarse and strong and cunning...proud to be Hog Butcher, Tool Maker, Stacker of Wheat, Player with Railroads and Freight Handler to the Nation.

I took to wearing a black tie known as the Ascot, with long drooping ends. I had seen pictures of painters, sculptors, poets, wearing this style of tie.

I can remember only a few of the strange and curious words now dead but living and spoken by the English people a thousand years ago.

Life is an onion - you peel it year by year and sometimes cry.

Poetry is the synthesis of hyacinths and biscuits.

I tell you the past is a bucket of ashes, so live not in your yesterdays, no just for tomorrow, but in the here and now. Keep moving and forget the post mortems; and remember, no one can get the jump on the future.

By night the skyscraper looms in the smoke and the stars and has a soul.

Here I saw a city rise and say to the peoples round world: Listen, I am strong, I know what I want.

Ordering a man to write a poem is like commanding a pregnant woman to give birth to a red-headed child.

SONG OF THE MAN WHO WAS TO BE HUNG The thunders will take me home, whenever I mind to go home, my friends, and the wind it will take me home, too.

An ambition is a little creeper that creeps and creeps in your heart night and day, singing a little song, 'Come and find me, come and find me'.

Time is the coin of life. Only you can determine how it will be spent.

I won't take my religion from any man who never works except with his mouth.

OJIBWA Flitting white-fire insects! Wandering small-fire beasts! Wave little stars about my bed! Weave little stars into my sleep! Come, little dancing white-fire bug, Come, little flitting white-fire beast! Light me with your white-flame magic, Your little star-torch.

Here is the difference between Dante, Milton, and me. They wrote about hell and never saw the place. I wrote about Chicago after looking the town over for years and years.

I knew I would read all kinds of books and try to get at what it is that makes good writers good. But I made no promises that I would write books a lot of people would like to read.

The doorknobs open the doors. The windows are always either open or shut. We are always either upstairs or downstairs in this house. Everything is the same as it always was.

I've written some poetry I don't understand myself.