W H Auden quotes, quotations, poems, phrases, words
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W H Auden QUOTES / QUOTATIONS
A poet can write about a man slaying a dragon, but not about a man pushing a button that releases a bomb.
Quotation of W H Auden
A poet is a professional maker of verbal objects.
Quotation of W H Auden
A poet is, before anything else, a person who is passionately in love with language.
Quotation of W H Auden
A professor is one who talks in someone else's sleep.
Quotation of W H Auden
A professor is someone who talks in someone else's sleep.
Quotation of W H Auden
A real book is not one that we read, but one that reads us.
Quotation of W H Auden
A tremendous number of people in America work very hard at something that bores them. Even a rich man thinks he has to go down to the office everyday. Not because he likes it but because he can't think of anything else to do.
Quotation of W H Auden
A verbal art like poetry is reflective; it stops to think. Music is immediate, it goes on to become.
Quotation of W H Auden
All sin tends to be addictive, and the terminal point of addiction is what is called damnation.
Quotation of W H Auden
All sins tend to be addictive, and the terminal point of addiction is damnation.
Quotation of W H Auden
All that we are not stares back at what we are.
Quotation of W H Auden
All works of art are commissioned in the sense that no artist can create one by a simple act of will but must wait until what he believes to be a good idea for a work comes to him.
Quotation of W H Auden
Almost all of our relationships begin and most of them continue as forms of mutual exploitation, a mental or physical barter, to be terminated when one or both parties run out of goods.
Quotation of W H Auden
Among those whom I like or admire, I can find no common denominator, but among those whom I love, I can: all of them make me laugh.
Quotation of W H Auden
Among those whom I like or admire, I can find no common denominator; but among those whom I love, I can: all of them can make me laugh.
Quotation of W H Auden
Art is born of humiliation.
Quotation of W H Auden
Art is our chief means of breaking bread with the dead.
Quotation of W H Auden
Before people complain of the obscurity of modern poetry, they should first examine their consciences and ask themselves with how many people and on how many occasions they have genuinely and profoundly shared some experience with another.
Quotation of W H Auden
Between friends differences in taste or opinion are irritating in direct proportion to their triviality.
Quotation of W H Auden
Choice of attention - to pay attention to this and ignore that - is to the inner life what choice of action is to the outer. In both cases, a man is responsible for his choice and must accept the consequences, whatever they may be.
Quotation of W H Auden
Composing mortals with immortal fire.
Quotation of W H Auden
Death is the sound of distant thunder at a picnic.
Quotation of W H Auden
Every American poet feels that the whole responsibility for contemporary poetry has fallen upon his shoulders, that he is a literary aristocracy of one.
Quotation of W H Auden
Every autobiography is concerned with two characters, a Don Quixote, the Ego, and a Sancho Panza, the Self.
Quotation of W H Auden
Evil is unspectacular and always human, and shares our bed and eats at our own table.
Quotation of W H Auden
Fame often makes a writer vain, but seldom makes him proud.
Quotation of W H Auden
For who can bear to feel himself forgotten?
Quotation of W H Auden
Geniuses are the luckiest of mortals because what they must do is the same as what they most want to do.
Quotation of W H Auden
God bless the USA, so large, so friendly, and so rich.
Quotation of W H Auden
Good can imagine Evil; but Evil cannot imagine Good.
Quotation of W H Auden
''Healing,'' Papa would tell me, ''is not a science, but the intuitive art of wooing nature.''
Quotation of W H Auden
Health is the state about which medicine has nothing to say: Sanctity is the state about which theology has nothing to say.
Quotation of W H Auden
Health is the state about which medicine has nothing to say.
Quotation of W H Auden
History is, strictly speaking, the study of questions; the study of answers belongs to anthropology and sociology.
Quotation of W H Auden
I don't get acting jobs because of my looks.
Quotation of W H Auden
I'll love you, dear, I'll love you till China and Africa meet and the river jumps over the mountain and the salmon sing in the street.
Quotation of W H Auden
If equal affection cannot be, let the more loving be me.
Quotation of W H Auden
If time were the wicked sheriff in a horse opera, I'd pay for riding lessons and take his gun away.
Quotation of W H Auden
In a world of prayer, we are all equal in the sense that each of us is a unique person, with a unique perspective on the world, a member of a class of one.
Quotation of W H Auden
In relation to a writer, most readers believe in the Double Standard: they may be unfaithful to him as often as they like, but he must never, never be unfaithful to them.
Quotation of W H Auden
In times of joy, all of us wished we possessed a tail we could wag.
Quotation of W H Auden
It is a sad fact about our culture that a poet can earn much more money writing or talking about his art than he can by practicing it.
Quotation of W H Auden
It is already possible to imagine a society in which the majority of the population, that is to say, its laborers, will have almost as much leisure as in earlier times was enjoyed by the aristocracy. When one recalls how aristocracies in the past actually behaved, the prospect is not cheerful.
Quotation of W H Auden
It takes little talent to see clearly what lies under one's nose, a good deal of it to know in which direction to point that organ.
Quotation of W H Auden
It takes little talent to see what lies under one's nose, a good deal to know in what direction to point that organ.
Quotation of W H Auden
It's a sad fact about our culture that a poet can earn much more money writing or talking about his art than he can by practicing it.
Quotation of W H Auden
It's frightening how easy it is to commit murder in America. Just a drink too much. I can see myself doing it. In England, one feels all the social restraints holding one back. But here, anything can happen.
Quotation of W H Auden
Learn from your dreams what you lack.
Quotation of W H Auden
Like everything which is not the involuntary result of fleeting emotion but the creation of time and will, any marriage, happy or unhappy, is infinitely more interesting than any romance, however passionate.
Quotation of W H Auden
May it not be that, just as we have to have faith in Him, God has to have faith in us and, considering the history of the human race so far, may it not be that ''faith'' is even more difficult for Him than it is for us?
Quotation of W H Auden
Men will pay large sums to whores for telling them they are not bores.
Quotation of W H Auden
Murder is commoner among cooks than among members of any other profession.
Quotation of W H Auden
Murder is unique in that it abolishes the party it injures, so that society has to take the place of the victim and on his behalf demand atonement or grant forgiveness; it is the one crime in which society has a direct interest.
Quotation of W H Auden
Music can be made anywhere, is invisible and does not smell.
Quotation of W H Auden
Music is the best means we have of digesting time.
Quotation of W H Auden
My face looks like a wedding-cake left out in the rain.
Quotation of W H Auden
No good opera plot can be sensible, for people do not sing when they are feeling sensible.
Quotation of W H Auden
No hero is immortal till he dies.
Quotation of W H Auden
No hero is mortal till he dies.
Quotation of W H Auden
No human being is innocent, but there is a class of innocent human actions called Games.
Quotation of W H Auden
No poet or novelist wishes he were the only one who ever lived, but most of them wish they were the only one alive, and quite a number fondly believe their wish has been granted.
Quotation of W H Auden
Nobody knows what the cause is, though some pretend they do; it like some hidden assassin waiting to strike at you. Childless women get it, and men when they retire; it as if there had to be some outlet for their foiled creative fire.
Quotation of W H Auden
Now is the age of anxiety.
Quotation of W H Auden
Of all possible subjects, travel is the most difficult for an artist, as it is the easiest for a journalist.
Quotation of W H Auden
One cannot walk through an assembly factory and not feel that one is in Hell.
Quotation of W H Auden
Perhaps there is only one cardinal sin: impatience. Because of impatience we were driven out of Paradise, because of impatience we cannot return.
Quotation of W H Auden
Slavery is so intolerable a condition that the slave can hardly escape deluding himself into thinking that he is choosing to obey his master's commands when, in fact, he is obliged to. Most slaves of habit suffer from this delusion and so do some writers, enslaved by an all too ''personal'' style.
Quotation of W H Auden
Sob, heavy world Sob as you spin, Mantled in mist Remote from the happy.
Quotation of W H Auden
Some books are undeservedly forgotten; none are undeservedly remembered.
Quotation of W H Auden
Some writers confuse authenticity, which they ought always to aim at, with originality, which they should never bother about.
Quotation of W H Auden
The center that I cannot find is known to my unconscious mind.
Quotation of W H Auden
The class distinctions proper to a democratic society are not those of rank or money, still less, as is apt to happen when these are abandoned, of race, but of age.
Quotation of W H Auden
The countenances of children, like those of animals, are masks, not faces, for they have not yet developed a significant profile of their own.
Quotation of W H Auden
The ear tends to be lazy, craves the familiar and is shocked by the unexpected; the eye, on the other hand, tends to be impatient, craves the novel and is bored by repetition.
Quotation of W H Auden
The words of a dead man are modified in the guts of the living.
Quotation of W H Auden
Thousands have lived without love, not one without water.
Quotation of W H Auden
To save your world you asked this man to die; would this man, could he see you now, ask why?
Quotation of W H Auden
To the man-in-the-street, who, I'm sorry to say, is a keen observer of life, the word 'Intellectual' suggests straight away a man who's untrue to his wife.
Quotation of W H Auden
We all have these places where shy humiliations gambol on sunny afternoons.
Quotation of W H Auden
We are all here on earth to help others; what on earth the others are here for I don't know.
Quotation of W H Auden
We are here on Earth to do good to others. What the others are here for, I don't know.
Quotation of W H Auden
What the mass media offers is not popular art, but entertainment which is intended to be consumed like food, forgotten, and replaced by a new dish.
Quotation of W H Auden
When I am in the company of scientists, I feel like a shabby curate who has strayed by mistake into a drawing room full of dukes.
Quotation of W H Auden
When I find myself in the company of scientists, I feel like a shabby curate who has strayed by mistake into a room full of dukes.
Quotation of W H Auden
You have to see the sex act comically, as a child.
Quotation of W H Auden
You know there are no secrets in America. It's quite different in England, where people think of a secret as a shared relation between two people.
Quotation of W H Auden
You must go to bed with friends or whores, where money makes up the difference in beauty or desire.
Quotation of W H Auden
You owe it to us all to get on with what you're good at.
Quotation of W H Auden