I never saw love as luck, as that gift from the gods which put everything else in place, and allowed you to succeed. No, I saw love as reward. One could find it only after one's virtue, or one's courage, or self-sacrifice, or generosity, or loss, has succeeded in stirring the power of creation.
(Norman Mailer (b. 1923), U.S. author. Harry Hubbard, in Harlot's Ghost, Omega 6, Random House (1991).)
The history of modern art is also the history of the progressive loss of art's audience. Art has increasingly become the concern of the artist and the bafflement of the public.
(Henry Geldzahler (1935-1994), Belgian-born U.S. curator, art critic. repr. In The New Art: A Critical Anthology, ed. Gregory Battcock (1966, rev. 1973). "The Art Audience and the Critic," Hudson Review (New York, Spring 1965).)
The boys dressed themselves, hid their accoutrements, and went off grieving that there were no outlaws any more, and wondering what modern civilization could claim to have done to compensate for their loss. They said they would rather be outlaws a year in Sherwood Forest than President of the United States forever.
(Mark Twain [Samuel Langhorne Clemens] (1835-1910), U.S. author. The Adventures of Tom Sawyer, ch. 8 (1876).)
The cultivation of one set of faculties tends to the disuse of others. The loss of one faculty sharpens others; the blind are sensitive in touch. Has not the extreme cultivation of the commercial faculty permitted others as essential to national life, to be blighted by disease?
(J. Ellen Foster (1840-1910), U.S. attorney, temperance activist, and suffragist. What America Owes to Women, ch. 33 (1893).
Reflecting on America's national prosperity.)
I have always observed, when there is as much sour as sweet in a compliment, that an Englishman is eternally at a loss within himself, whether to take it, or let it alone: a Frenchman never is.
(Laurence Sterne (1713-1768), British author, clergyman. A Sentimental Journey through France and Italy by Mr. Yorick (1768), ch. "Calais," ed. Gardner D. Stout, Jr., University of California Press (1967).)
We now talk of our killed and wounded. There is however a very happy feeling. Those who escape regret of course the loss of comrades and friends, but their own escape and safety to some extent modifies their feelings.
(Rutherford Birchard Hayes (1822-1893), U.S. president. Diary and Letters of Rutherford Birchard Hayes: Nineteenth President of the United States, vol. II, p. 530, ed. Charles Richard Williams, The Ohio State Archaeological and Historical Society, 5 vols. (1922-1926), Hayes to Lucy Webb Hayes (October 25, 1864).
After the battle of Cedar Creek.)
"Letting go" ...implies generosity, a talent a good mother needs in abundance. Separation is not loss, it is not cutting yourself off from someone you love. It is giving freedom to the other person to be herself before she becomes resentful, stunted, and suffocated by being tied too close. Separation is not the end of love. It creates love.
(Nancy Friday (20th century), U.S. author. My Mother, My Self, ch. 3 (1977).)