I seem, in most of these verses, to have but placed a harp in a window, and noted the contrasted airs which wayward winds have played upon the strings.
(Herman Melville (1819-1891), U.S. author. Prefatory words. "Battle-Pieces" (1866), p. 446, Collected Poems of Herman Melville, ed. Howard P. Vincent (1947).
Describing the composition of his Civil War poetry.)
When the wind carries a cry which is meaningful to human ears, it is simpler to believe the wind shares with us some part of the emotion of Being than that the mysteries of a hurricane's rising murmur reduce to no more than the random collision of insensate molecules.
(Norman Mailer (b. 1923), U.S. author. Narrator, "Advertisement for Myself on the Way Out," Advertisements for Myself, p. 520, Putnam's (1959).)
Lust is a mysterious wound in the side of humanity; or rather, at the very source of its life! To confound this lust in man with that desire which unites the sexes is like confusing a tumor with the very organ which it devours, a tumor whose very deformity horribly reproduces the shape.
(Georges Bernanos (1888-1948), French novelist, political writer. The Diary of a Country Priest, ch. 4 (1936).)
Listening to someone talk isn't at all like listening to their words played over on a machine. What you hear when you have a face before you is never what you hear when you have before you a winding tape.
(Oriana Fallaci (b. 1930), Italian author. The Egotists, foreword (1963).)