Djuna Barnes

(1892-1982 / Storm King Mountain, New York)

Djuna Barnes Quotes

  • ''Well, isn't Bohemia a place where everyone is as good as everyone else—and must not a waiter be a little less than a waiter to be a good Bohemian?''
    Djuna Barnes (1892-1982), U.S. author, poet, columnist. repr. In Djuna Barnes's New York (1989). "Becoming Intimate with the Bohemians," New York Morning Telegraph Sunday Magazine (Nov. 19, 1916).
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  • ''The heart of the jealous knows the best and most satisfying love, that of the other's bed, where the rival perfects the lover's imperfections.''
    Djuna Barnes (1892-1982), U.S. author, poet, columnist. Doctor, in Nightwood, ch. 5 (1936).
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  • ''I'm a fart in a gale of wind, a humble violet, under a cow pat.''
    Djuna Barnes (1892-1982), U.S. author, poet, columnist. Doctor, in Nightwood, ch. 5 (1936).
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  • ''Dreams have only the pigmentation of fact.''
    Djuna Barnes (1892-1982), U.S. author, poet, columnist. Doctor, in Nightwood, ch. 5 (1936).
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  • ''The night is a skin pulled over the head of day that the day may be in torment.''
    Djuna Barnes (1892-1982), U.S. author, poet, columnist. Doctor, in Nightwood, ch. 5 (1936).
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  • ''Sleep demands of us a guilty immunity. There is not one of us who, given an eternal incognito, a thumbprint nowhere set against our souls, would not commit rape, murder and all abominations.''
    Djuna Barnes (1892-1982), U.S. author, poet, columnist. Doctor, in Nightwood, ch. 5 (1936).
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  • ''New York is the meeting place of the peoples, the only city where you can hardly find a typical American.''
    Djuna Barnes (1892-1982), U.S. author, poet, columnist. repr. In Djuna Barnes's New York (1989). "Greenwich Village as It Is," Pearson's Magazine (Oct. 1916).
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  • ''After all, it is not where one washes one's neck that counts but where one moistens one's throat.''
    Djuna Barnes (1892-1982), U.S. author, poet, columnist. repr. In Djuna Barnes's New York (1989). "Greenwich Village As It Is," Pearson's Magazine (Oct. 1916).
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  • ''We are beginning to wonder whether a servant girl hasn't the best of it after all. She knows how the salad tastes without the dressing, and she knows how life's lived before it gets to the parlor door.''
    Djuna Barnes (1892-1982), U.S. author, poet, columnist. repr. In Djuna Barnes's New York (1989). "The Home Club: For Servants Only," Brooklyn Daily Eagle (Oct. 12, 1913).
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Best Poem of Djuna Barnes

Suicide

Corpse A

They brought her in, a shattered small
Cocoon,
With a little bruised body like
A startled moon;
And all the subtle symphonies of her
A twilight rune.

Corpse B

They gave her hurried shoves this way
And that.
Her body shock-abbreviated
As a city cat.
She lay out listlessly like some small mug
Of beer gone flat.

Read the full of Suicide

In Particular

Whatloin-cloth, what rag of wrong
Unpriced?
What turn of body, what of lust
Undiced?
So we've worshipped you a little
More than Christ.

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