Nazim Hikmet 1902-1963
“I mean, you must take living so seriously
that even at seventy, for example, you’ll plant olive trees―
and not for your children, either,
but because although you fear death you don’t believe it,
because living, I mean, weighs heavier.”
“It was as if that great rush of anger had washed me clean, emptied me of hope, and, gazing up at the dark sky spangled with its signs and stars, for the first time, the first, I laid my heart open to the benign indifference of the universe.
To feel it so like myself, indeed, so brotherly, made me realize that I’d been happy, and that I was happy still. For all to be accomplished, for me to feel less lonely, all that remained to hope was that on the day of my execution there should be a huge crowd of spectators and that they should greet me with howls of execration.”
― Albert Camus, The Stranger.
“The difficulties (which other people surely find incredible) I have in speaking to people arise from the fact that my thinking, or rather the content of my consciousness, is entirely nebulous, that I remain undisturbed by this, so far as it concerns only myself, and am even occasionally self-satisfied; yet conversation with people demands pointedness, solidity, and sustained coherence, qualities not to be found in me. No one will want to lie in clouds of mist with me, and even if someone did, I couldn’t expel the mist from my head; when two people come together it dissolves of itself and is nothing”
“To love! To surrender absolutely, to prostrate oneself before the divine image, to die a thousand imaginary deaths, to annihilate every trace of self, to find the whole universe embodied and enshrined in the living image of another! Adolescent, we say. Rot! This is the germ of the future life, the seed which we hide away, which we bury deep within us, which we smother and stifle and do our utmost to destroy as we advance from one experience to another and flutter and flounder and lose our way.”