Dorothy Parker

(22 August 1893 - 7 June 1967 / Long Branch / New Jersey)

Dorothy Parker Quotes

  • ''That woman speaks eighteen languages and can't say No in any of them.''
    Dorothy Parker (1893-1967), U.S. humorous writer. Quoted in While Rome Burns, "Our Mrs. Parker," Alexander Woollcott (1934). Referring to a departing guest.
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  • ''It serves me right for putting all my eggs in one bastard.''
    Dorothy Parker (1893-1967), U.S. humorous writer. quoted in You Might As Well Live, pt. 2, ch.3, John Keats (1970). On her abortion.
  • ''Wit has truth in it ... wisecracking is simply calisthenics with words.''
    Dorothy Parker (1893-1967), U.S. author and humorist. As quoted in The Late Mrs. Dorothy Parker, ch. 9, by Leslie Frewin (1986). Parker was reputed to be the wittiest woman of her time.
  • ''The affair between Margot Asquith and Margot Asquith will live as one of the prettiest love stories in all literature.''
    Dorothy Parker (1893-1967), U.S. author and humorist. As quoted in The Late Mrs. Dorothy Parker, ch. 28, by Leslie Frewin (1986). In a review, probably written in the early 1920s, of the autobiography of Margot Asquith (1864-1945).
  • ''The two most beautiful words in the English language are "check enclosed."''
    Dorothy Parker (1893-1967), U.S. author and humorist. As quoted in The Late Mrs. Dorothy Parker, ch. 17, by Leslie Frewin (1986). Said in the 1920s; Parker, trying to earn her living as a writer, was referring to the financial insecurity of the profession.
  • ''Money is only congealed snow.''
    Dorothy Parker (1893-1967), U.S. author and humorist. As quoted in The Late Mrs. Dorothy Parker, ch. 25, by Leslie Frewin (1986). A popular writer who had earned considerable sums of money, Parker spent carelessly and always seemed to be in need.
  • ''Maybe it is only I, but conditions are such these days, that if you use studiously correct grammar, people suspect you of homosexual tendencies.''
    Dorothy Parker (1893-1967), U.S. author and humorist. As quoted in The Late Mrs. Dorothy Parker, ch. 11, by Leslie Frewin (1986). Parker was a grammatically fastidious writer of fiction, poetry, essays, and reviews. She said this ca. 1925.
  • ''I was the toast of two continents: Greenland and Australia.''
    Dorothy Parker (1893-1967), U.S. author and humorist. As quoted in You Might as Well Live, part 1, ch. 6, by John Keats (1970). Parker was recalling her 1920s reputation as a rather silly "smartcracker."
  • ''Scratch a lover, and find a foe.''
    Dorothy Parker (1893-1967), U.S. humorous writer. Ballade of a Great Weariness, Enough Rope (1926).
  • ''... if this world were anything near what it should be there would be no more need of a Book Week than there would be a of a Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children.''
    Dorothy Parker (1893-1967), U.S. author and humorist. Constant Reader, column dated February 11, 1928 (1970).

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Best Poem of Dorothy Parker

A Very Short Song

Once, when I was young and true,
Someone left me sad-
Broke my brittle heart in two;
And that is very bad.

Love is for unlucky folk,
Love is but a curse.
Once there was a heart I broke;
And that, I think, is worse.

Read the full of A Very Short Song

August

When my eyes are weeds,
And my lips are petals, spinning
Down the wind that has beginning
Where the crumpled beeches start
In a fringe of salty reeds;
When my arms are elder-bushes,
And the rangy lilac pushes
Upward, upward through my heart;

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