“Ms. O’Brien describes her young self this way: “I was ravenous. For food. For life. For the stories that I would write, except that everything was effervescent and inchoate in my overexcitable brain.” She desired, she says, to be “drawn into the wild heart of things.”
— Edna O’Brien,Seeking the Ardent Life. O, joy! To the wild, wild heart of things!
And, from Pico Iyer:
“I travel because I feel that the world is much larger than my ideas of it. Every stereotype dissolves as soon as I set foot in Syria or Cuba or Vietnam (though not North Korea) and, sitting at home, I’m usually in a perfect state of ignorance and complacency. Living in rural Japan for more than a quarter of a century now has taught me that questions are much richer and deeper than most answers, and that the more I live with someone or something, the less I know of them. So maybe I travel and write to get past the dangerous illusion of knowingness. I’m ever more keen to acknowledge the mystery in everything, even my prosaic old self.”
“As Thoreau famously said, it doesn’t matter where or how far you go – the farther commonly the worse – the important thing is how alive you are. Writing of every kind is a way to wake oneself up and keep as alive as when one has just fallen in love.”
“So it is that Lonely Places attract as many lonely people as they produce, and the loneliness we see in them is partly in ourselves.”
“Finding a sanctuary, a place apart from time, is not so different from finding a faith.”
“…home lies in the things you carry with you everywhere and not the ones that tie you down.”