Ford Madox Ford quotes

  • Higher than the beasts, lower than the angels, stuck in our idiot Eden.
    -- Ford Madox Ford

    #Angel #Eden #Idiot

  • If for nine years I have possessed a goodly apple that is rotten at the core and discover its rottenness only in nine years and six months less four days, isn't it true to say that for nine years I possessed a goodly apple?
    -- Ford Madox Ford

    #Years #Apples #Rotten

  • The instances of honesty that one comes across in this world are just as amazing as the instances of dishonesty. After forty-five years of mixing with one's kind, one ought to have acquired the habit of being able to know something about one's fellow beings. But one doesn't
    -- Ford Madox Ford

    #Honesty #Years #World

  • For the judging of contemporary literature the only test is one's personal taste. If you much like a new book, you must call it literature even though you find no other soul to agree with you, and if you dislike a book you must declare that it is not literature though a million voices should shout you that you are wrong. The ultimate decision will be made by Time.
    -- Ford Madox Ford

    #Book #Voice #Judging

  • The world is full of places to which I want to return
    -- Ford Madox Ford

    #World #Want #Return

  • Open the book to page ninety-nine and read, and the quality of the whole will be revealed to you.
    -- Ford Madox Ford

    #Book #Quality #Pages

  • Only two classes of books are of universal appeal. The very best and the very worst.
    -- Ford Madox Ford

    #Book #Class #Two

  • Yes, a war is inevitable. Firstly, there's you fellows who can't be trusted. And then there's the multitude who mean to have bathrooms and white enamel. Millions of them; all over the world. Not merely here. And there aren't enough bathrooms and white enamel in the world to go round.
    -- Ford Madox Ford

    #War #Mean #White

  • What the artist wishes to do — as far as you are concerned — is to take you out of yourself. As far as he is concerned, he wishes to express himself.
    -- Ford Madox Ford

    #Artist #Wish #Concerned

  • The object of the novelist is to keep the reader entirely oblivious of the fact that the author exists - even of the fact he is reading a book.
    -- Ford Madox Ford

    #Reading #Book #Crafts

  • We are all so afraid, we are all so alone, we all so need from the outside the assurance of our own worthiness to exist. So, for a time, if such a passion come to fruition, the man will get what he wants. He will get the moral support, the encouragement, the relief from the sense of loneliness, the assurance of his own worth. But these things pass away; inevitably they pass away as the shadows pass across sundials. It is sad, but it is so. The pages of the book will become familiar; the beautiful corner of the road will have been turned too many times. Well, this is the saddest story.
    -- Ford Madox Ford

    #Beautiful #Encouragement #Loneliness

  • Why can't people have what they want? The things were all there to content everybody; yet everybody has the wrong thing.
    -- Ford Madox Ford

    #People #Want

  • Ford's last Fifth Queen novel is amazing. The whole cycle is a noble conception.
    -- Ford Madox Ford

    #Queens #Noble #Lasts

  • It was an odd friendship, but the oddnesses of friendships are a frequent guarantee of their lasting texture.
    -- Ford Madox Ford

    #Guarantees #Texture #Odd

  • He added that a Frenchman in the train had given him a great sandwich that so stank of garlic that he had been inclined to throw it at the fellow's head.
    -- Ford Madox Ford

    #Sandwiches #Garlic #Culinary

  • Pride and reserve are not the only things in life; perhaps they are not even the best things. But if they happen to be your particular virtues you will go all to pieces if you let them go.
    -- Ford Madox Ford

    #Pride #Pieces #Virtue

  • It is not merely that people must die and people must suffer, if not here, then there. But what is dreadful is that the world goes on and people go on being stupidly cruel - in the old ways and all the time.
    -- Ford Madox Ford

    #People #Suffering #Goes On

  • If you hunch your shoulders too long against a storm your shoulders will grow bowed.…
    -- Ford Madox Ford

    #Long #Storm #Hunches

  • In every man there are two minds that work side by side, the one checking the other; thus emotion stands against reason, intellect corrects passion and first impressions act a little, but very little, before quick reflection.
    -- Ford Madox Ford

    #Passion #Reflection #Men

  • Damn it all, it's the first duty of a soldier - it's the first duty of all Englishmen - to be able to tell a good lie in answer to a charge.
    -- Ford Madox Ford

    #Lying #Soldier #Answers

  • The first thing you have to consider when writing a novel is your story, and then your story - and then your story!
    -- Ford Madox Ford

    #Writing #Stories #Crafts

  • [W]e are almost always in one place with our minds somewhere quite other.
    -- Ford Madox Ford

    #Mind

  • There is no man who loves a woman that does not desire to come to her for the renewal of his courage, for the cutting asunder of his difficulties. And that will be the mainspring of his desire for her. We are all so afraid, we are all so alone, we all so need from the outside the assurance of our own worthiness to exist.
    -- Ford Madox Ford

    #Cutting #Men #Desire

  • I know nothing - nothing in the world - of the hearts of men. I only know that I am alone - horribly alone.
    -- Ford Madox Ford

    #Heart #Men #World

  • ...she had always known under her mind and now she confessed it: her agony had been, half of it, because one day he would say farewell to her, like that, with the inflexion of a verb. As, just occasionally, using the word 'we' - and perhaps without intention - he had let her know that he loved her.
    -- Ford Madox Ford

    #Farewell #Agony #Mind

  • The war had made a man of him! It had coarsened him and hardened him. There was no other way to look at it. It had made him reach a point at which he would no longer stand unbearable things.
    -- Ford Madox Ford

    #War #Men #Way

  • You have to wait together - for a week, for a year, for a lifetime, before the final intimate conversation may be attained ... and exhausted. So that ... That in effect was love.
    -- Ford Madox Ford

    #Years #Waiting #Together

  • He thought he suddenly understood. For the Lincon-shire sergeant-major the word Peace meant that a man could stand up on a hill. For him it meant someone to talk to.
    -- Ford Madox Ford

    #Men #Hills #Shire

  • He wouldn't write a letter because he couldn't without beginning it 'Dear Sylvia' and ending it 'Yours sincerely' or 'truly' or 'affectionately.' He's that sort of precise imbecile. I tell you he's so formal he can't do without all the conventions there are and so truthful he can't use half of them.
    -- Ford Madox Ford

    #Writing #Use #Half

  • But responsibility hardens the heart. It must.
    -- Ford Madox Ford

    #Heart #Responsibility

  • Six months ago I had never been to England, and, certainly, I had never sounded the depths of an English heart. I had known the shallows.
    -- Ford Madox Ford

    #Heart #Depth #Literature

  • You may well ask why I write. And yet my reasons are quite many. For it is not unusual in human beings who have witnessed the sack of a city or the falling to pieces of a people to set down what they have witnessed for the benefit of unknown heirs or of generations infinitely remote; or, if you please, just to get the sight out of their heads.
    -- Ford Madox Ford

    #Fall #Writing #Sight

  • No author, I think, is deserving of much censure for vanity if, taking down one of his ten-year-old books, he exclaims: "Great heavens, did I write as well as that then?" for the implication always is that one does not write any longer so well and few are so envious as to censure the complacencies of an extinct volcano.
    -- Ford Madox Ford

    #Book #Writing #Thinking

  • It's the quality of harmony, sir. The quality of being in harmony with you own soul. God having given you your own soul you are then in harmony with Heaven.
    -- Ford Madox Ford

    #Heaven #Soul #Quality

  • They were simple, earnest people, those early Victorians, and had not yet learnt the trick of avoiding disturbing thoughts and sights.
    -- Ford Madox Ford

    #Simple #Sight #People

  • We are all so afraid, we are all so alone, we all so need from the outside the assurance of our own worthiness to exist.
    -- Ford Madox Ford

    #Fear #Needs #Assurance

  • New York is large, glamorous, easy-going, kindly and incurious, but above all it is a crucible - because it is large enough to be incurious.
    -- Ford Madox Ford

    #New York #Crucible #Easy

  • If you only would!" He added rather diffidently: "If you would not mind remembering that I am a military court of inquiry. It makes it easier for me to report to the general if you say things dully and in the order that they happened.
    -- Ford Madox Ford

    #Military #Order #Mind

  • And it was a most remarkable, a most moving glance, as if for a moment a lighthouse had looked at me.
    -- Ford Madox Ford

    #Moving #Lighthouse #Moments

  • I couldn't regard myself as personally repulsive. No man can, or, if he ever comes to do so, that is the end of him.
    -- Ford Madox Ford

    #Men #Ends

  • Mind, I am not preaching anything contrary to accepted morality. I am not advocating free love in this or any other case. Society must go on, I suppose, and society can only exist if the normal, if the virtuous, and the slightly deceitful flourish, and if the passionate, the headstrong, and the too-truthful are condemned to suicide and madness.
    -- Ford Madox Ford

    #Suicide #Mind #Passionate