James Joyce quotes

  • When the short days of winter came, dusk fell before we had well eaten our dinners. When we met in the street the houses had grown sombre. The space of sky above us was the colour of ever-changing violet and towards it the lamps of the street lifted their feeble lanterns. The cold air stung us and we played till our bodies glowed. Our shouts echoed in the silent street.
    -- James Joyce

    #Winter #Sky #Space

  • History, Stephen said, is a nightmare from which I am trying to awake.
    -- James Joyce

    #Truth #History #Trying

  • The supreme question about a work of art is out of how deep a life does it spring.
    -- James Joyce

    #Art #Spring #Doe

  • Bury the dead. Say Robinson Crusoe was true to life. Well then Friday buried him. Every Friday buries a Thursday if you come to look at it.
    -- James Joyce

    #Friday #True Life #Looks

  • I've put in so many enigmas and puzzles that it will keep the professors busy for centuries arguing over what I meant, and that's the only way of insuring one's immortality.
    -- James Joyce

    #Writing #Way #Arguing

  • You can still die when the sun is shining.
    -- James Joyce

    #Shining #Sun #Stills

  • His soul swooned slowly as he heard the snow falling faintly through the universe and faintly falling, like the descent of their last end, upon all the living and the dead.
    -- James Joyce

    #Life #Fall #Snow

  • Sometimes he caught himself listening to the sound of his own voice. He thought that in her eyes he would ascent to an angelical stature; and, as he attached the fervent nature of his companion more and more closely to him, he heard the strange impersonal voice which he recognised as his own, insisting on the soul's incurable lonliness. We cannot give ourselves, it said: we are our own.
    -- James Joyce

    #Eye #Voice #Giving

  • It is as painful perhaps to be awakened from a vision as to be born.
    -- James Joyce

    #Art #Philosophy #History

  • It soared, a bird, it held its flight, a swift pure cry, soar silver orb it leaped serene, speeding, sustained, to come, don't spin it out too long long breath he breath long life, soaring high, high resplendent, aflame, crowned, high in the effulgence symbolistic, high, of the ethereal bosom, high, of the high vast irradiation everywhere all soaring all around about the all, the endlessnessnessness...
    -- James Joyce

    #Long #Bird #Orbs

  • Think you're escaping and run into yourself. Longest way round is the shortest way home.
    -- James Joyce

    #Inspirational #Life #Running

  • One great part of every human existence is passed in a state which cannot be rendered sensible by the use of wideawake language, cutanddry grammar and goahead plot.
    -- James Joyce

    #Plot #Use #Language

  • and yet her name was like a summons to all my foolish blood.
    -- James Joyce

    #Blood #Names #Foolish

  • The heaventree of stars hung with humid nightblue fruit.
    -- James Joyce

    #Stars #Science #Fruit

  • He wanted to cry quietly but not for himself: for the words, so beautiful and sad, like music.
    -- James Joyce

    #Beautiful #Cry #Wanted

  • Thought is the thought of thought.
    -- James Joyce

  • There's no friends like the old friends.
    -- James Joyce

    #Old Friends #No Friends

  • You made me confess the fears that I have. But I will tell you also what I do not fear. I do not fear to be alone or to be spurned for another or to leave whatever I have to leave. And I am not afraid to make a mistake, even a great mistake, a lifelong mistake and perhaps as long as eternity too.
    -- James Joyce

    #Mistake #Long #Eternity

  • Love loves to love love.
    -- James Joyce

    #Love #Life

  • Your battles inspired me - not the obvious material battles but those that were fought and won behind your forehead.
    -- James Joyce

    #Mind #Battle #Inspired

  • A man of genius makes no mistakes; his errors are volitional and are the portals of discovery.
    -- James Joyce

    #Life #Spiritual #Mistake

  • Shut your eyes and see.
    -- James Joyce

    #Eye #Insight

  • Redheaded women buck like goats.
    -- James Joyce

    #Goats #Bucks

  • A wild angel had appeared to him, the angel of mortal youth and beauty, an envoy from the fair courts of life, to throw open before him in an instant of ecstasy the gates of all the ways of error and glory.
    -- James Joyce

    #Angel #Errors #Way

  • Mistakes are the portals of discovery.
    -- James Joyce

    #Encouraging #Mistake #Discovery

  • The artist, like the God of the creation, remains within or behind or beyond or above his handiwork, invisible, refined out of existence, indifferent, paring his fingernails.
    -- James Joyce

    #Art #Invisible #Creation

  • All things are inconstant except the faith in the soul, which changes all things and fills their inconstancy with light...
    -- James Joyce

    #Faith #Light #Soul

  • Poetry, even when apparently most fantastic, is always a revolt against artifice, a revolt, in a sense, against actuality.
    -- James Joyce

    #Writing #Fantastic #Revolt

  • Stately, plump Buck Mulligan came from the stairhead, bearing a bowl of lather on which a mirror and a razor lay crossed.
    -- James Joyce

    #Mirrors #Razors #Bucks

  • But my body was like a harp and her words and gestures were like fingers running upon the wires.
    -- James Joyce

    #Beautiful #Running #Wire

  • Whatever else is unsure in this stinking dunghill of a world a mother's love is not.
    -- James Joyce

    #Family #Mom #Mother

  • I am tomorrow, or some future day, what I establish today. I am today what I established yesterday or some previous day.
    -- James Joyce

    #Inspirational #Work #Passion

  • No pen, no ink, no table, no room, no time, no quiet, no inclination.
    -- James Joyce

    #Writing #Ink #Tables

  • They lived and laughed and loved and left.
    -- James Joyce

    #Love #Life #Positive Thinking

  • A way a lone a last a loved a long the riverrun, past Eve and Adam's, from swerve of shore to bend of bay, brings us by a commodius vicus of recirculation back to Howth Castle and Environs.
    -- James Joyce

    #Past #Long #Way

  • The light music of whiskey falling into a glass - an agreeable interlude.
    -- James Joyce

    #Fall #Glasses #Light

  • All Moanday, Tearday, Wailsday, Thumpsday, Frightday, Shatterday.
    -- James Joyce

  • Gazing up into the darkness I saw myself as a creature driven and derided by vanity; and my eyes burned with anguish and anger.
    -- James Joyce

    #Eye #Vanity #Darkness

  • What is better than to sit at the end of the day and drink wine with friends, or substitutes for friends?
    -- James Joyce

    #Wine #The End Of The Day #Drink

  • Our souls, shame-wounded by our sins, cling to us yet more, a woman to her lover clinging, the more the more.
    -- James Joyce

    #Soul #Lovers #Sin

  • Her lips touched his brain as they touched his lips, as though they were a vehicle of some vague speech and between them he felt an unknown and timid preasure, darker than the swoon of sin, softer than sound or odor.
    -- James Joyce

    #Brain #Lips #Sound

  • Though their life was modest, they believed in eating well.
    -- James Joyce

    #Eating #Modest #Wells

  • Every age must look for its sanction to its poetry and philosophy, for in these the human mind, as it looks backward or forward, attains to an eternal state.
    -- James Joyce

    #Philosophy #Mind #Age

  • Man and woman, love, what is it? A cork and a bottle.
    -- James Joyce

    #Men #Bottles #Men And Women

  • For myself, I always write about Dublin, because if I can get to the heart of Dublin I can get to the heart of all the cities of the world. In the particular is contained the universal.
    -- James Joyce

    #Writing #Heart #Cities

  • I have left my book, I have left my room, For I heard you singing Through the gloom.
    -- James Joyce

    #Book #Singing #Rooms

  • Every life is in many days, day after day. We walk through ourselves, meeting robbers, ghosts, giants, old men, young men, wives, widows, brothers-in-love. But always meeting ourselves.
    -- James Joyce

    #Brother #Men #Wife

  • When a man is born...there are nets flung at it to hold it back from flight. You talk to me of nationality, language, religion. I shall try to fly by those nets.
    -- James Joyce

    #Men #Trying #Language

  • What did that mean, to kiss? You put your face up like that to say goodnight and then his mother put her face down. That was to kiss. His mother put her lips on his cheek; her lips were soft and they wetted his cheek; and they made a tiny little noise: kiss. Why did people do that with their two faces?
    -- James Joyce

    #Mother #Mean #Kissing

  • Moments of their secret life together burst like stars upon his memory.
    -- James Joyce

    #Stars #Memories #Secret

  • When I die Dublin will be written on my heart.
    -- James Joyce

    #Heart #Dublin #My Heart

  • Better pass boldly into that other world, in the full glory of some passion, than fade and wither dismally with age.
    -- James Joyce

    #Birthday #Passion #Other Worlds

  • The voices blend and fuse in clouded silence: silence that is infinite of space: and swiftly, silently the sound is wafted over regions of cycles of cycles of generations that have lived.
    -- James Joyce

    #Voice #Space #Silence

  • Men are governed by lines of intellect - women: by curves of emotion.
    -- James Joyce

    #Men #Curves #Lines

  • Secrets, silent, stony sit in the dark palaces of both our hearts: secrets weary of their tyranny: tyrants willing to be dethroned.
    -- James Joyce

    #Heart #Dark #Tyrants

  • The demand that I make of my reader is that he should devote his whole Life to reading my works.
    -- James Joyce

    #Reading #Demand #Should

  • The object of the artist is the creation of the beautiful. What the beautiful is is another question.
    -- James Joyce

    #Beautiful #Artist #Creation

  • Christopher Columbus, as everyone knows, is honored by posterity because he was the last to discover America.
    -- James Joyce

    #Inspirational #America #Lasts

  • I'd love to have the whole place swimming in roses
    -- James Joyce

    #Swimming #Rose

  • Hold to the now, the here, through which all future plunges to the past.
    -- James Joyce

    #Past #Mindfulness #Plunge

  • I am, a stride at a time. A very short space of time through very short time of space.
    -- James Joyce

    #Space #Stride

  • To learn one must be humble. But life is the great teacher.
    -- James Joyce

    #Teacher #Humble #Life Is

  • Shakespeare is the happy hunting ground of all minds that have lost their balance.
    -- James Joyce

    #Hunting #Mind #Balance

  • My words in her mind: cold polished stones sinking through a quagmire.
    -- James Joyce

    #Mind #Quagmire #Stones

  • My mouth is full of decayed teeth and my soul of decayed ambitions.
    -- James Joyce

    #Ambition #Soul #Teeth

  • Life is too short to read a bad book.
    -- James Joyce

    #Book #Life Is Too Short #Life Is

  • Her name sprang to my lips at moments in strange prayers and praises which I myself did not understand. My eyes were often full of tears (I could not tell why) and at times a flood from my heart seemed to pour itself out into my bosom. I thought little of the future. I did not know whether I would ever speak to her or not or, if I spoke to her, how I could tell her of my confused adoration.
    -- James Joyce

    #Prayer #Confused #Eye

  • Mr. Duffy lived a short distance from his body.
    -- James Joyce

    #Distance #Body

  • While you have a thing it can be taken from you…..but when you give it, you have given it. no robber can take it from you. It is yours then forever when you have given it. It will be yours always. That is to give.
    -- James Joyce

    #Taken #Giving #Forever

  • Mr Leopold Bloom ate with relish the inner organs of beasts and fowls. He liked thick giblet soup, nutty gizzards, a stuffed roast heart, liverslices fried with crustcrumbs, fried hencods' roes. Most of all he liked grilled mutton kidneys which gave to his palate a fine tang of faintly scented urine.
    -- James Joyce

    #Food #Heart #Kidneys

  • I am proud to be an emotionalist.
    -- James Joyce

    #Proud

  • God made food; the devil the cooks.
    -- James Joyce

    #Devil #Made #Cooks

  • I will tell you what I will do and what I will not do. I will not serve that in which I no longer believe, whether it calls itself my home, my fatherland, or my church: and I will try to express myself in some mode of life or art as freely as I can and as wholly as I can, using for my defense the only arms I allow myself to use -- silence, exile, and cunning.
    -- James Joyce

    #Life #Art #Believe

  • I fear those big words, Stephen said, which make us so unhappy.
    -- James Joyce

    #Unhappy #Bigs #Said

  • Absence, the highest form of presence.
    -- James Joyce

    #Absence #Form

  • There is not past, no future; everything flows in an eternal present.
    -- James Joyce

    #Past #Flow

  • A corpse is meat gone bad. Well and what's cheese? Corpse of milk.
    -- James Joyce

    #Cheesy #Meat #Gone

  • I wanted real adventures to happen to myself. But real adventures, I reflected, do not happen to people who remain at home: they must be sought abroad.
    -- James Joyce

    #Real #Home #Adventure

  • In the particular is contained the universal.
    -- James Joyce

    #Learning #Programming #Particular

  • I think a child should be allowed to take his father's or mother's name at will on coming of age. Paternity is a legal fiction.
    -- James Joyce

    #Mother #Children #Father

  • There is no heresy or no philosophy which is so abhorrent to the church as a human being.
    -- James Joyce

    #Philosophy #Religion #Atheism

  • And then I asked him with my eyes to ask again yes and then he asked me would I yes and his heart was going like mad and yes I said yes I will yes.
    -- James Joyce

    #Love #Heart #Eye

  • Old father, old artificer, stand me now and ever in good stead.
    -- James Joyce

    #Father

  • Writing in English is the most ingenious torture ever devised for sins committed in previous lives. The English reading public explains the reason why.
    -- James Joyce

    #Reading #Writing #Language

  • I have the words already. What I am seeking is the perfect order of words in the sentence. You can see for yourself how many different ways they might be arranged.
    -- James Joyce

    #Writing #Order #Perfect

  • My eyes were often full of tears (I could not tell why) and at times a flood from my heart seemed to pour itself out.
    -- James Joyce

    #Heart #Eye #Tears

  • White wine is like electricity. Red wine looks and tastes like a liquified beefsteak.
    -- James Joyce

    #Wine #White #Taste

  • Can't bring back time. Like holding water in your hand.
    -- James Joyce

    #Time #Hands #Water

  • People could put up with being bitten by a wolf but what properly riled them was a bite from a sheep.
    -- James Joyce

    #Sheep #People

  • I hear the ruin of all space, shattered glass and toppled masonry, and time one livid final flame.
    -- James Joyce

    #Time #Space #Glasses

  • Save the trees of Ireland for the future men of Ireland on the fair hills of Eire, O.
    -- James Joyce

    #Men #Tree #Hills

  • Do you know what a pearl is and what an opal is? My soul when you came sauntering to me first through those sweet summer evenings was beautiful but with the pale passionless beauty of a pearl. Your love has passed through me and now I feel my mind something like an opal, that is, full of strange uncertain hues and colours, of warm lights and quick shadows and of broken music.
    -- James Joyce

    #Beautiful #Summer #Sweet

  • Deal with him, Hemingway!
    -- James Joyce

    #Heart #Deals

  • Beware the horns of a bull, the heels of the horse, and the smile of an Englishman.
    -- James Joyce

    #Horse #Bulls #Horns

  • When the soul of a man is born in this country there are nets flown at it to hold it back from flight.
    -- James Joyce

    #Country #Men #Soul

  • Ineluctable modality of the visible; at least that if no more, thought through my eyes. Signatures of all things I am here to read.
    -- James Joyce

    #Eye #Vision #Signatures

  • By an epiphany he meant a sudden spiritual manifestation, whether in the vulgarity of speech or of gesture or memorable phrase of the mind itself. He believed it was for the man of letters to record these epiphanies with extreme care (saving them for later use, that is), seeing that they themselves are the most delicate and evanescent of moments.
    -- James Joyce

    #Spiritual #Memorable #Men

  • Ulysses He ... saw the dark tangled curls of his bush floating, floating hair of the stream around the limp father of thousands, a languid flatong flower.
    -- James Joyce

    #Father #Flower #Dark

  • He asked himself what is a woman standing on the stairs in the shadow, listening to distant music, a symbol of. If he were a painter he would paint her in that attitude. Her blue felt hat would show off the bronze of her hair against the darkness and the dark panels of her skirt would show off the light ones. Distant Music he would call the picture if he were a painter.
    -- James Joyce

    #Attitude #Dark #Light

  • Her image had passed into his soul for ever and no word had broken the holy silence of his ecstasy. Her eyes had called him and his soul had leaped at the call. To live, to err, to fall, to triumph, to recreate life out of life! A wild angel had appeared to him, the angel of mortal youth and beauty, an envoy from the fair courts of life, to throw open before him in an instant of ecstasy the gates of all the ways of error and glory. On and on and on and on!
    -- James Joyce

    #Fall #Eye #Angel