Tuesday, October 30, 2007

I found it!

I had been trying to find this quote for something blog-related a few weeks ago with no luck. And now that I'm looking for a different quote (something about God's touch, or breath, or share in poetry -- I believe it was by Gide, but I first read it as referenced by Cocteau -- can anyone help?), I stumbled back across this one. I have no idea what context I was planning on using it in, so mull and ponder to whatever end your heart desires...

"Listen carefully to first criticisms made of your work. Note just what it is about your work that critics don't like - then cultivate it. That's the only part of your work that's individual and worth keeping." ~Jean Cocteau

EDIT: It was God's share, I found it. But feel free to ponder Cocteau anyway. Hell, since I found it, feel free to ponder Gide as well:

"Before I explain my book to others, I expect them to explain it to me. To claim to explain it first is to immediately narrow down its reach; for if we know what we intended to say, we do not know whether we said only that. - One always says more than THAT. - And what interests me most is what I put in without knowing, - that unconscious share, which I would like to call God's share." ~Andre Gide



Ian said...

These are wonderful quotes!

Paul said...

Thank you, Paul.

Anonymous said...

The Cocteau quote reminds me of the Far Side cartoon in which one caveman is strapped to the outside of a giant stone wheel, and the other cavemen are preparing to roll the wheel down a steep hill. I can imagine that there was at least one other caveman just outside the frame saying, "But..."
Although the quote seems profound, it could also be used as an argument for regression and colossal stupidity. I would be the first to admit that the majority can be wrong. I would, nevertheless, argue that the probability that the majority is right is at least more than fifty-one percent. Cock your snoot at them if you want, but the betting man is putting his dollar on the more likely side.