We should work: if not by preference, at least out of despair. All things considered, work is less boring than amusement.
What matters an eternity of damnation to someone who has found in one second the infinity of joy?
Who haunts the tempest and laughs at the archer.
What a mysterious faculty is that queen of the faculties!
What men call love is a very small, restricted, feeble thing compared with this ineffable orgy, this divine prostitution of the soul giving itself entire, all its poetry and all its charity, to the unexpected as it comes along, to the stranger as he passes.
Who would dare assign to art the sterile function of imitating nature?
What can an eternity of damnation matter to someone who has felt, if only for a second, the infinity of delight?
What strange phenomena we find in a great city, all we need do is stroll about with our eyes open. Life swarms with innocent monsters.
With heart at rest I climbed the citadel's steep height, and saw the city as from a tower, hospital, brothel, prison, and such hells, where evil comes up softly like a flower. Thou knowest, O Satan, patron of my pain, not for vain tears I went up at that hour; but like an old sad faithful lecher, fain to drink delight of that enormous trull whose hellish beauty makes me young again. Whether thou sleep, with heavy vapors full, sodden with day, or, new appareled, stand in gold-laced veils of evening beautiful, I love thee, infamous city! Harlots and hunted have pleasures of their own to give, the vulgar herd can never understand.
What could be more simple and more complex, more obvious and more profound than a portrait.
When a singer puts his hand on his heart, it means usually, I will always love you!
With wine, poetry, or virtue as you choose. But get drunk.
What do I care if you are good? Be beautiful! and be sad!
When an exquisite poem brings one's eyes to the point of tears, those tears are not evidence of an excess of joy, they are witness far more to an exacerbated melancholy, a disposition of the nerves, a nature exiled among imperfect things, which would like to possess, without delay, a paradise revealed on this very same earth.
Within the bottle's depths, the wine's soul sang one night. Drink wine, drink poetry, drink virtue.
What good is it to accomplish projects, when the project itself is enjoyment enough?
When I was a kid, I felt in my heart Ahsasin opposite: horror of life and ecstasy of life ...
Woman is natural, that is to say, abominable.
What I have always found most beautiful in the theatre, in my childhood, and still today, is lustre--a beautiful object, luminous, crystalline, complex, circular, symmetrical. However, I do not absolutely deny the value of dramatic literature. Only, I should like the actors to be mounted on high pattens, to wear masks more expressive than the human face, and to speak through megaphones.
When it meows, one scarcely hears it... It has not the need of words to speak the lengthiest phraseologies.
Women do not know how to separate the soul from the body.
What I say is that the supreme and singular joy of making love resides in the certainty of doing evil.
When old Winter puts his blank face to the glass, I shall close all my shutters, pull the curtains tight, and build me stately palaces by candlelight.
Women need whippings. Man can punish them by love. As their children. But at the same time provides for itself, the pain that will despise their loved ones.
What is annoying in love, is that it is a crime in which one cannot do without an accomplice.