When I run across a quotation that grabs my attention, I add it to the file of others that accumulate through reading this and that.
The keepers have become fewer over the years perhaps because after living for many decades, it is harder to find new ones that are engaging. Too many fall into the category of affirmations which I find cloying, and as much as I enjoy puns and other forms of wordplay, few offer insight into the mysteries of life.
A good quotation is more than the sum of its parts, a thought worthy of pondering for at least the length of time it takes to brew a pot of coffee, and the best have the power to deepen understanding or, minimally, provide fodder for a blog post when an elder is having a slow brain day.
“In spite of illness, in spite even of the archenemy sorrow, one can remain alive long past the usual date of disintegration if one is unafraid of change, insatiable in intellectual curiosity, interested in big things, and happy in small ways.”
- - Edith Wharton
“The hardest years in life are those between ten and seventy.”
- - Helen Hayes
“The deepest definition of youth is life as yet untouched by tragedy.”
- - Alfred North Whitehead
“You'll find as you grow older that you weren't born such a great while ago after all. The time shortens up.”
- - William Dean Howells
“With age comes the inner, the higher life. Who would be forever young, to dwell always in externals?”
- - Elizabeth Cady Stanton
“The youth gets together his materials to build a bridge to the moon or, perchance, a palace or temple on the earth and, at length, the middle-aged man concludes to build a woodshed with them.”
- - Henry David Thoreau
[At The Elder Storytelling Place today, Sue West gives us an meditation on lives we have lived in There's an Old Woman in My Mirror.]