Boris Pasternak Quotes (53 Quotes)


    A conscious attempt to fall asleep is sure to produce insomnia, to try to be conscious of one's own digestion is a sure way to upset the stomach. Consciousness is a poison when we apply it to ourselves. Consciousness is a light directed outward. it's like the headlights on a locomotive-turn them inward and you'd have a crash.


    A literary creation can appeal to us in all sorts of ways-by its theme, subject, situations, characters. But above all it appeals to us by the presence in it of art. It is the presence of art in Crime and Punishment that moves us deeply rather than the story of Raskolnikov's crime.


    And if he were really to do good he would have needed in addition to his principles, a heart capable of violating them - a heart which knows only of particular not of general cases and which achieves greatness in little actions.


    It?s a good thing when a man is different from your image of him. Is shows he isn?t a type. If he were, it would be the end of him as a man. But if you can?t place him in a category, it means that at least a part of him is what a human being ought to be. He has risen above himself, he has a grain of immortality.

    And now listen carefully. You in others-this is your soul. This is what you are. This is what your consciousness has breathed and lived on and enjoyed throughout your life-your soul, your immortality, your life in others. And what now? You have always been in others and you will remain in others. And what does it matter to you if later on that is called your memory? This will be you-the you that enters the future and becomes a part of it.

    Oh, how one wishes sometimes to escape from the meaningless dullness of human eloquence, from all those sublime phrases, to take refuge in nature, apparently so inarticulate, or in the wordlessness of long, grinding labor, of sound sleep, of true music, or of a human understanding rendered speechless by emotion!

    And then the two basic ideals of modern man- without them he is unthinkable- the idea of free personality and the idea of life as sacrafice

    Oh, what a love it was, utterly free, unique, like nothing else on earth! Their thoughts were like other people's songs.


    Progress in science is governed by the laws of repulsion, every step forward is made by refutation of prevalent errors and false theories. Forward steps in art are governed by the law of attraction, are the result of imitation of and admiration for beloved predecessors.

    As before the collapse, the setting sun brushed the tiles, brought out the warm brown glow on the wallpaper, and hung the shadow of the birch on the wall as if it were a woman's scarf.


    But the division in him was a sorrow and a torment, and he became accustomed to it only as one gets used to an unhealed and frequently reopened wound.


    Farewell, my great one, my own, farewell, my pride, farewell, my swift, deep, dear river, how I loved your daylong splashing, how I loved to plunge into your cold waves.

    You and I, it's as though we have been taught to kiss in heaven and sent down to earth together, to see if we know what we were taught.


    You come out; it is still dark. The door creaks, or perhaps you sneeze, or the snow crunches under your foot, and hares start up from the far cabbage patch and leap away, leaving the snow criss-crossed with tracks. In the distance dogs begin to howl and it takes a long time before the quieten down. The cocks have finished their crowing and have nothing left to say. Then dawn breaks.

    I don't think I could love you so much if you had nothing to complain of and nothing to regret. I don't like people who have never fallen or stumbled. Their virtue is lifeless and of little value. Life hasn't revealed it's beauty to them.


    No deep and strong feeling, such as we may come across here and there in the world, is unmixed with compassion. The more we love, the more the object of our love seems to us to be a victim.

    Poetry is a rich, full-bodied whistle, cracked ice crunching in pails, the night that numbs the leaf, the duel of two nightingales, the sweet pea that has run wild, Creation's tears in shoulder blades.

    In view of the meaning given to this honor in the community to which I belong, I should abstain from the undeserved prize that has been awarded to me. Do not meet my voluntary refusal with ill will.

    The whole of life is symbolic because the whole of it has meaning.

    I come here to speak poetry. It will always be in the grass. It will also be necessary to bend down to hear it. It will always be too simple to be discussed in assemblies.

    One day Lara went out and did not come back.... She died or vanished somewhere, forgotten as a nameless number on a list which was afterwards mislaid.

    I don't like people who have never fallen or stumbled. Their virtue is lifeless and it isn't of much value. Life hasn't revealed its beauty to them.

    What for centuries raised man above the beast is not the cudgel but the irresistible power of unarmed truth.


    More Boris Pasternak Quotations (Based on Topics)


    Life - Art - Man - Literature - Truth - Mind - Power - Vice & Virtue - Time - Society & Civilization - Immortality - Poetry - Love - Emotions - World - Value - Thought & Thinking - Beauty - Memory - View All Boris Pasternak Quotations

    More Boris Pasternak Quotations (By Book Titles)


    - Doctor Zhivago

    Related Authors


    Leo Tolstoy - Charles Dickens - Thomas Wolfe - Maxim Gorky - Louisa May Alcott - J. R. R. Tolkien - Gabriel Garcia Marquez - Fyodor Dostoevsky - Elizabeth Gilbert - Alexander Dumas


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