You wanna fly, you got to give up the shit that weighs you down.— Toni Morrison
The most viral Toni Morrison quotes you will be delighted to read
I have only to break into the tightness of a strawberry, and I see summer - its dust and lowering skies.
If you want to fly, you have to give up the things that weigh you down.
The function of freedom is to free someone else.
Write at the edges of the day.
Don’t beg anybody for anything, especially love.
There is no such thing as race. None. There is just a human race - scientifically, anthropologically. Racism is a construct, a social construct... it has a social function, racism.
If there's a book you really want to read, but it hasn't been written yet, then you must write it.
There is no time for despair, no place for self-pity, no need for silence, no room for fear. We speak, we write, we do language. That is how civilizations heal.
In times of dread, artists must never choose to remain silent.
I know the world is bruised and bleeding, and though it is important not to ignore its pain, it is also critical to refuse to succumb to its malevolence. Like failure, chaos contains information that can lead to knowledge - even wisdom. Like art.
I tell my students, 'When you get these jobs that you have been so brilliantly trained for, just remember that your real job is that if you are free, you need to free somebody else. If you have some power, then your job is to empower somebody else. This is not just a grab-bag candy game.
All water has a perfect memory and is forever trying to get back to where it was.
She is a friend of mind. She gather me, man. The pieces I am, she gather them and give them back to me in all the right order. It's good, you know, when you got a woman who is a friend of your mind.
A sister can be seen as someone who is both ourselves and very much not ourselves - a special kind of double.
Racism will disappear when it's no longer profitable, and no longer psychologically useful. And when that happens, it'll be gone. But at the moment, people make a lot of money off of it, pro and con.
The peace I am thinking of is the dance of an open mind when it engages another equally open one.
Please don't settle for happiness. It's not good enough. Of course you deserve it, but if that's all you have in mind - happiness - I want to suggest to you that personal success devoid of meaningfulness, free of a steady commitment to social justice - that's more than a barren life. It's a trivial one.
At some point in life, the world's beauty becomes enough.
Books ARE a form of political action.
Books are knowledge. Books are reflection. Books change your mind.
They seemed to have taken all of their smoothly cultivated ignorance, their exquisitely learned self-hatred, their elaborately designed hopelessness and sucked it all up into a fiery cone of scorn that had burned for ages in the hollows of their minds― cooled ―and spilled over lips of outrage, consuming whatever was in its path.
Risky, thought Paul D, very risky. For a used-to-be-slave woman to love anything that much was dangerous, especially if it was her children she had settled on to love. The best thing, he knew, was to love just a little bit, so when they broke its back, or shoved it in a croaker sack, well, maybe you'd have a little love left over for the next one.
All paradises, all utopias are designed by who is not there, by the people who are not allowed in.
I am a writer and my faith in the world of art is intense, but not irrational, nor naïve - because art takes us and makes us take a journey beyond price, beyond cost, into bearing witness to the world as it is and as it should be. Art invites us to know beauty and to solicit it, summon it, from even the most tragic of circumstances.
At some point in life the world's beauty becomes enough.
You don't need to photograph, paint or even remember it. It is enough.
I really want some meaning. It used to be easy to toss it off. Now it's harder and harder. You have to navigate just to find something that has nourishment. It's the absence of nourishment. What do you do in place of nourishment? It's usually junk. Either it's junk food or junk clothes or junk ideas.
Birth, life, and death― each took place on the hidden side of a leaf.
At some point in life the world's beauty becomes enough.
You don't need to photograph, paint or even remember it. It is enough. No record of it needs to be kept and you don't need someone to share it with or tell it to. When that happens — that letting go — you let go because you can.
When a child walks in the room, your child or anybody else’s child, do your eyes light up? That’s what they’re looking for.
The writing is - I'm free of pain. It's the place where I live; it's where I have control; it's where nobody tells me what to do; it's where my imagination is fecund and I am really at my best. Nothing matters more in the world or in my body or anywhere when I'm writing.
Don't ever think I fell for you, or fell over you. I didn't fall in love, I rose in it.
I tell my students there is such a thing as 'writer's block,' and they should respect it. You shouldn't write through it. It's blocked because it ought to be blocked, because you haven't got it right now.
Sexist language, racist language, theistic language - all are typical of the policing languages of mastery, and cannot, do not, permit new knowledge or encourage the mutual exchange of ideas.
If you're going to hold someone down you're going to have to hold on by the other end of the chain. You are confined by your own repression.
Sweet, crazy conversations full of half sentences, daydreams and misunderstandings more thrilling than understanding could ever be.
You are your own stories and therefore free to imagine and experience what it means to be human... And although you don't have complete control over the narrative - no author does, I can tell you - you could nevertheless create it.
Each member of the family in his own cell of consciousness, each making his own patchwork quilt of reality - collecting fragments of experience here, pieces of information there. From the tiny impressions gleaned from one another, they created a sense of belonging and tried to make do with the way they found each other.
You free. Nothing and nobody is obliged to save you but you.
We mistook violence for passion, indolence for leisure, and thought recklessness was freedom.
The pieces I am, she gather them and gave them back to me in all the right order.
What I think the political correctness debate is really about is the power to be able to define. The definers want the power to name. And the defined are now taking that power away from them.
An innocent man is a sin before God. Inhuman and therefore untrustworthy. No man should live without absorbing the sins of his kind, the foul air of his innocence, even if it did wilt rows of angel trumpets and cause them to fall from their vines.
There is really nothing more to say-except why.
But since why is difficult to handle, one must take refuge in how.
The ability of writers to imagine what is not the self, to familiarize the strange and mystify the familiar, is the test of their power.
I know what every colored woman in this country is doing.
.. Dying. Just like me. But the difference is they dying like a stump. Me, I’m going down like one of those redwoods. I sure did live in this world.
We're all surrounded by what I call faux language, fake language of commerce, of news media.
From my point of view, which is that of a storyteller, I see your life as something artful, waiting, just waiting and ready for you to make it art.
Access to knowledge is the superb, the supreme act of truly great civilizations.
Of all the institutions that purport to do this, free libraries stand virtually alone in accomplishing this mission.
Unpersecuted, unjailed, unharrassed writers are trouble for the ignorant bully, the sly racist, and the predators feeding off the world's resources.
She learned the intricacy of loneliness: the horror of color, the roar of soundlessness and the menace of familiar objects lying still.
Love it, love it and the beat and beating heart, love that too.
More than eyes or feet. More than lungs that have yet to draw free air. More than your life-holding womb and your life-giving private parts, hear me now, love your heart. For this is the prize.