Madeleine L’Engle


American Novelist, Poet, Short Story Writer best known for novel "A Wrinkle In Time" winning the John Newbery Medal

Author Quotes

You've got to learn to walk through a pigpen and not get dirty.

What grievous pain a little fault doth give thee!

When we are self-conscious, we cannot be wholly aware; we must throw ourselves out first. This throwing ourselves away is the act of creativity. So, when we wholly concentrate, like a child in play, or an artist at work, then we share in the act of creating. We not only escape time, we escape our self-conscious selves.

You can always tell Schubert by that sadness that's under everything he writes, even the merriest stuff.

What happens to what's happened?

When we are writing, or painting, or composing, we are, during the time of creativity, freed from normal restrictions, and are opened to a wider world, where colors are brighter, sounds clearer, and people more wondrously complex than we normally realize.

You cannot see the past that did not happen any more than you can foresee the future.

What I must learn is to love with all of me, giving all of me, and yet remain whole in myself. Any other kind of love is too demanding of the other; it takes, rather than gives. To love so completely that you lose yourself in another person is not good. You are giving a weight, not the sense of lightness and light that loving someone should give.

When we fall as we always do, we pick ourselves up and start again. And when our trust is betrayed the only response that is not destructive is to trust again. Not stupidly you understand, but fully aware of the facts, we still have to trust.

You don?t know the meaning of moderation, do you, my darling? A happy medium is something I wonder if you?ll ever learn.

What I think is that if we're still around after we die, it will be more like those moments when we let go, than the way we are most of the time. It'll be--it'll be the self beyond the self we know

When we make ourselves vulnerable, we do open ourselves to pain, sometimes excruciating pain. The more people we love, the more we are liable to be hurt, and not only by the people we love, but for the people we love.

You don't want him for a reason. You want him because he's your father.

What is a self-image? Who started talking about one? I rather fancy it was Madison Avenue. Picture Satan in a business suit, with well-groomed horns and a superbly switching tail, sitting at his huge executive's desk, thinking, 'Aha! If I can substitute images for reality I can get a lot more people under my domination.

when you put something into words, it leads to so many other thoughts

You mean you're comparing our lives to a sonnet? A strict form, but freedom within it? Yes. Mrs. Whatsit said. You're given the form, but you have to write the sonnet yourself. What you say is completely up to you.

What is forever? It cannot be in time, because time can be measured, and forever cannot. Time is inextricably tangled up with place, and can be measured only against place (dark of night in New York; grey of morning in Beja). Time has meaning only in relation to its position in space, the movement of a planet about a sun, of a night through stars.

Where love blooms bright and wild. Had Mary been filled with reason there'd have been no room for the child.

You see, though we travel together, we travel alone.

What is my own shadow? If we all had the ability to recognize our shadows we might not be driven by them.

Wherever there is unity in diversity, then we are free to be ourselves; it cannot be done in isolation; we need each other.

You're given the form, but you have to write the sonnet yourself. What you say is completely up to you.

When a child who has been conceived in love is born to a man and a woman, the joy of that birth sings throughout the universe. The joy of writing or painting is much the same, and the insemination comes not from the artist himself but from his relationship with those he loves, with the whole world. All real art is, in its true sense, religious; it is a religious impulse; there is not such thing as a non-religious subject.

Wherever there's laughter, there is heaven.

You're going to get hurt yourself, and badly, if you take everything so hard.

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American Novelist, Poet, Short Story Writer best known for novel "A Wrinkle In Time" winning the John Newbery Medal