"One day you knew what you had to do, and began." - Mary Oliver
I am a collector of quotes. I love them. I read them over and over again, letting them sink deep into my bones. I write them down in books and journals, print them and put them up on my walls, and underline them in books. I am drawn to a beautiful phrase or a profound thought like other people are to paintings or clothes or shoes. I am an addict.
Sometimes you read something and it resonates and you really really love it. You write it down and read it several times and go back to it sometimes and read it again. These are great quotes. Other times you read something and it hits you really hard. You catch your breath and read it several more times and you begin to live it. These are amazing quotes. Then there is the last kind. The last kind is the kind that doesn't necessarily seem like much when you read it for the first time. You might scribble it down or live with it a little, but you don't realize what effect it has had on you. Then it begins to whisper to you. You hear it in your head out of the blue. It actually begins to speak to you and in the end you realize it has changed your life. These are the best quotes.
My life-changing quote was from Women Who Run With the Wolves. If you read my blog much you won't be surprised. This is the passage that made me change the way I wrote and the book I was writing:
"We find lingering evidence of [the Wild Woman] archetype in the images and symbols found in stories, literature, poetry, painting, and religion. it would appear that its glow, its voice, and its fragrance are meant to cause us to be raised up from contemplating the shit on our tails to occasionally traveling the the company of the stars." - Clarissa Pinkola Estes.
It isn't a normal quote but it really echoes inside of me. I'll often be thinking something really yucky and suddenly the last bit pops into my head: stop contemplating the shit on your tail and start traveling in the company of the stars.
My writing is about that.
So as an avid collector I am asking - no, begging - you to use my comments to share with me the quote/ passage/ book/ poem/ lyrics/ words that changed your life. Which words were strung together in just the right way at the right time to make you shift? I would love to add them to my collection!! (And this time I will reply in my comments!)