Michael Ondaatje Famous Quotes & Sayings

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Top 100 Michael Ondaatje Quotes

#1. When I read biographies, I skip the first thirty pages about the childhood because it doesn't seem interesting to me. - Author: Michael Ondaatje
Michael Ondaatje Quotes #1027799
#2. In the desert the most loved waters, like a lover's name, are carried blue in your hands, enter your throat. One swallows absence. - Author: Michael Ondaatje
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#3. Her hand touched me at the wrist. "If I gave you my life, you would drop it. Wouldn't you?"
I didn't say anything. - Author: Michael Ondaatje
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#4. So what was better for us all? An ignorance, or a cautiousness like his, towards our own hearts. - Author: Michael Ondaatje
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#5. I've always loved history and history is collage, it is a juxtaposition of the good and the bad and the strange, and how you place those sentences together changes the whole mood of a history. - Author: Michael Ondaatje
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#6. We are full of anarchy. We take our clothes off because we shouldn't take our clothes off. And we behave worse in other countries. - Author: Michael Ondaatje
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#7. When you're writing, it's as if you're within a kind of closed world. - Author: Michael Ondaatje
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#8. Water is the exile, carried back in cans and flasks, the ghost between your hands and your mouth. - Author: Michael Ondaatje
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#9. For those cities that were great in earlier times must have now become small, and those that were great in my time were small in the time before. ... Man's good fortune never abides in the same place. - Author: Michael Ondaatje
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#10. This last night we tear into each other, as if to wound, as if to find the key to everything before morning. - Author: Michael Ondaatje
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#11. How we are almost nothing. We think, in our youth, we are the centre of the universe, but we simply respond, go this way or that by accident, survive or improve by the luck of the draw, with little choice or determination on our part. - Author: Michael Ondaatje
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#12. A well-told lie is worth a thousand facts - Author: Michael Ondaatje
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#13. I am not in love with him, I am in love with ghosts. So is he, he's in love with ghosts. - Author: Michael Ondaatje
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#14. The desert, where there is the communal book of moonlight. We were among the rumour of wells. In the palace of winds. - Author: Michael Ondaatje
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#15. I'll be looking at the moon,
but I'll be seeing you. - Author: Michael Ondaatje
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#16. Could you fall in love with her if she wasn't smarter than you? I mean, she may not be smarter than you. But isn't it important for you to think she is smarter than you in order to fall in love? Think now. - Author: Michael Ondaatje
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#17. First, he though, I need shoes with rubber on the bottom. I need gelato. - Author: Michael Ondaatje
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#18. That's one of the great sadnesses of any life - knowing what you know now and then remembering what you did not know then. - Author: Michael Ondaatje
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#19. The right ending is an open door you can't see too far out of. It can mean exactly the opposite of what you are thinking. - Author: Michael Ondaatje
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#20. In my work I sometimes borrow Claire's nature, as well as her careful focus on the world. - Author: Michael Ondaatje
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#21. We are the real countries, not the boundaries drawn on maps with the names of powerful men. - Author: Michael Ondaatje
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#22. It is important to die in holy places. That was one of the secrets of the desert. So Madox walked into a church in Somerset, a place he felt had lost its holiness, and he committed what he believed was a holy act. - Author: Michael Ondaatje
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#23. When I write my novels I don't really have a huge plan beforehand; I don't have the whole plot and architecture, so the story is sort of discovered as I write it. - Author: Michael Ondaatje
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#24. He will hear the rain before he feels it, a clicking on the dry grass, on the olive leaves. - Author: Michael Ondaatje
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#25. During certain hours, at certain years in our lives, we see ourselves as remnants from the earlier generations that were destroyed. So our job becomes to keep peace with enemy camps, eliminate the chaos at the end of Jacobean tragedies, and with 'the mercy of distance' write the histories. - Author: Michael Ondaatje
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#26. But we were interested in how our lives could mean something to the past. We sailed into the past. - Author: Michael Ondaatje
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#27. People don't write about kids; you have to give them a lot of freedom, and that causes anarchy and that causes farce. - Author: Michael Ondaatje
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#28. The first sentence of every novel should be: Trust me, this will take time but there is order here, very faint, very human. Meander if you want to get to town. - Author: Michael Ondaatje
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#29. It doubles your perception, to write from the point of view of someone you're not. - Author: Michael Ondaatje
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#30. How does this happen? To fall in love and be disassembled. - Author: Michael Ondaatje
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#31. I think precision in writing goes hand in hand with not trying to say everything. You try and say two-thirds, so the reader will involve himself or herself. - Author: Michael Ondaatje
Michael Ondaatje Quotes #1705292
#32. Girls with poison necklaces
to save themselves from torture.
Just as women wear amulets
which hold their rolled up fortunes
transcribed on ola leaf. - Author: Michael Ondaatje
Michael Ondaatje Quotes #1695325
#33. For echo is the soul of the voice exciting itself in hollow places. - Author: Michael Ondaatje
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#34. The word should be thinkering. - Author: Michael Ondaatje
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#35. That's Anil's path. She grows up in Sri Lanka, goes and gets educated abroad, and through fate or chance gets brought back by the Human Rights Commission to investigate war crimes. - Author: Michael Ondaatje
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#36. All his life he has avoided permanent intimacy. Till this war he has been a better lover than husband. He has been a man who slips away, in the way lovers leave chaos, the way thieves leave reduced houses. - Author: Michael Ondaatje
Michael Ondaatje Quotes #1656561
#37. Politically I also don't believe anymore that we can only have one voice to a story, it's like having one radio station to represent a country. You want the politics of any complicated situation to be complicated in a book of fiction or nonfiction. - Author: Michael Ondaatje
Michael Ondaatje Quotes #1650356
#38. The Englishman left months ago, Hana, he's with the Bedouin or in some English garden with its phlox and shit. - Author: Michael Ondaatje
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#39. You want to suggest something new, but at the same time, resolve the drama of the action in the novel. - Author: Michael Ondaatje
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#40. What night gave Rafael was a formlessness in which everything had a purpose. As if darkness had a hidden musical language. - Author: Michael Ondaatje
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#41. There are betrayals in war that are childlike compared with our human betrayals during peace. The new lovers enter the habits of the other. Things are smashed, revealed in a new light. This is done with nervous or tender sentences, although the heart is an organ of fire. - Author: Michael Ondaatje
Michael Ondaatje Quotes #1500493
#42. Caravaggio was constantly diverted by the human element during burglaries. Breaking into a house during Christmas, he would become annoyed if the Advent calendar had not been opened up to the date to which it should have been. - Author: Michael Ondaatje
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#43. We keep wanting to save those who are forlorn in this world. It's a male habit. - Author: Michael Ondaatje
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#44. His conversations lost some of their syllables out of shyness. - Author: Michael Ondaatje
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#45. He had approached the villa on that night of the storm not out of curiosity about the music but because of a danger to the piano player. The retreating army often left pencil mines within musical instruments. Returning owners opened up pianos and lost their hands. - Author: Michael Ondaatje
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#46. The sloshing of their hooves in the paddy field that I heard thirty yards away, my car door open for the breeze, the haunting sound I was caught within as if creatures of magnificence were undressing and removing their wings - Author: Michael Ondaatje
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#47. In Asian gardens you could look at rock and imagine water, you could gaze at a still pool and believe it had the hardness of rock. - Author: Michael Ondaatje
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#48. They broke the way a man dismantling a mine broke the second his geography exploded. - Author: Michael Ondaatje
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#49. Birds prefer trees with dead branches,' said Caravaggio. 'They have complete vistas from where they perch. They can take off in any direction. - Author: Michael Ondaatje
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#50. Some events take a lifetime to reveal their damage and influence. - Author: Michael Ondaatje
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#51. I am someone who has a cold heart. If I am beside a great grief I throw barriers up so the loss cannot go too deep or too far. There is a wall instantly in place, and it will not fall. - Author: Michael Ondaatje
Michael Ondaatje Quotes #208046
#52. What is interesting and important happens mostly in secret, in places where there is no power. - Author: Michael Ondaatje
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#53. Truth, at the wrong time, can be dangerous. - Author: Michael Ondaatje
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#54. You built your walls too, she tells him. So I have my wall. She says it glittering in a beauty he cannot stand. She with her beautiful clothes with her pale face that laughs at everyone who smiles at her ... - Author: Michael Ondaatje
Michael Ondaatje Quotes #336339
#55. Her life with others no longer interests him. He wants only her stalking beauty, her theatre of expressions. He wants the minute secret reflection between them, the depth of field minimal, their foreignness intimate like two pages of a closed book. - Author: Michael Ondaatje
Michael Ondaatje Quotes #316541
#56. Moments before sleep are when she feels most alive, leaping across fragments of the day, bringing each moment into the bed with her like a child with schoolbooks and pencils. The day seems to have no order until these times, which are like a ledger for her, her body full of stories and situations. - Author: Michael Ondaatje
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#57. Commissioner Harris at the far end stared along the mad pathway. This was his first child and it had already become a murderer. - Author: Michael Ondaatje
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#58. They had all grown older, but he still did not feel he had wisdom to go with his aging. - Author: Michael Ondaatje
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#59. He never used words or reason. He just moved dangerously among us. - Author: Michael Ondaatje
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#60. Meanwhile with the help of an anecdote I fell in love. Words caravaggio. They have a power. - Author: Michael Ondaatje
Michael Ondaatje Quotes #231239
#61. Nowadays he doesn't think of his wife, though he knows he can turn around and evoke every move of her, describe any aspect of her, the weigh of her wrist on his heart during the night. - Author: Michael Ondaatje
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#62. I was a man fifteen years older than she, you understand. I had reached that stage in life where I identified with cynical villains in a book. - Author: Michael Ondaatje
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#63. Half a page
and the morning is already ancient. - Author: Michael Ondaatje
Michael Ondaatje Quotes #215732
#64. And that would be unconscionable, I suppose, to feel any obligation? Yes. Of course it would.
Katherine cliffton
The English Patient - Author: Michael Ondaatje
Michael Ondaatje Quotes #404851
#65. I'm a Canadian citizen. But I always want to feel at home in Sri Lanka. I'm a member of both countries. - Author: Michael Ondaatje
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#66. I knew maps of the sea floor, maps that depict weaknesses in the shield of the earth, charts painted on skin that contain the various routes of the Crusades. So - Author: Michael Ondaatje
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#67. Many books open with an author's assurance of order. One slipped into their waters with a silent paddle ... But novels commenced with hesitation or chaos. Readers were never fully in balance. A door a lock a weir opened and they rushed through, one hand holding a gunnel, the other a hat. - Author: Michael Ondaatje
Michael Ondaatje Quotes #159465
#68. I went mad before he did, you killed everything in me. Kiss me,will you. Stop defending yourself. - Author: Michael Ondaatje
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#69. Here. Where I am anonymous and alone in a white room with no history and no parading. So I can make something unknown in the shape of this room. Where I am King of Corners. - Author: Michael Ondaatje
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#70. From this point on, she whispered, we will either find or lose our souls. - Author: Michael Ondaatje
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#71. Everyone has to scratch on walls somewhere or they go crazy - Author: Michael Ondaatje
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#72. -What do you hate most? he asks.
-A lie. And you?
-Ownership, he says. When you leave me, forget me. - Author: Michael Ondaatje
Michael Ondaatje Quotes #50445
#73. Once I've discovered the story, I might restructure it, maybe move things around, set up a clue that something is going to happen later, but that happens much later in an editorial capacity. - Author: Michael Ondaatje
Michael Ondaatje Quotes #23981
#74. What was wonderful was that even within the drunkenness of two a.m., each of you somehow recognized the more permanent worth and pleasure of the other. You may have arrived with others, will perhaps cohabit this night with others, but both of you have found your fates. - Author: Michael Ondaatje
Michael Ondaatje Quotes #4638
#75. Small talk plunged to its death around him. - Author: Michael Ondaatje
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#76. There is God only in the desert, he wanted to acknowledge that now. Outside of this there was just trade and power, money and war. - Author: Michael Ondaatje
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#77. As we left they told us the old joke. To start a journey in a sandstorm is good luck. - Author: Michael Ondaatje
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#78. All the time I hate what I am doing and want the other. In a room full of people I get frantic in their air and their shout and when I'm alone I sniff the smell of their bodies against my clothes. - Author: Michael Ondaatje
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#79. There are no brunettes ... among Florentine Madonnas. - Author: Michael Ondaatje
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#80. Love is the use one makes of another. - Author: Michael Ondaatje
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#81. There's more danger in the violence you don't face. - Author: Michael Ondaatje
Michael Ondaatje Quotes #752332
#82. I have spent weeks in the desert, forgetting to look at the moon, he says, as a married man may spend days never looking into the face of his wife. These are not sins of omission but signs of pre-occuopation. - Author: Michael Ondaatje
Michael Ondaatje Quotes #730380
#83. I know the devices of a demon. I was taught as a child about the demon lover. I was told about a beautiful temptress who came to a young man's room. And he, if he were wise, would demand that she turn around, because demons and witches have no back, only what they wish to present to you. - Author: Michael Ondaatje
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#84. I don't see novels ending with any real sense of closure. - Author: Michael Ondaatje
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#85. He had been slowing down, the way one, half asleep, continually rereads the same paragraph trying to find a connection between sentences. - Author: Michael Ondaatje
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#86. Men had always been the reciters of poetry in the desert. - Author: Michael Ondaatje
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#87. The joyful will stoop with sorrow, and when you have gone to the earth I will let my hair grow long for your sake, I will wander through the wilderness in the skin of a lion - Author: Michael Ondaatje
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#88. I wanted to find one law to cover all of living. I found fear ... - Author: Michael Ondaatje
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#89. Sleep is a prison for a boy who has friends to meet. - Author: Michael Ondaatje
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#90. We own the country we grow up in, or we are aliens and invaders. - Author: Michael Ondaatje
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#91. Could you waste your life on a gift? If you did not use your gift, was it a betrayal? - Author: Michael Ondaatje
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#92. I promised to tell you how one falls in love. - Author: Michael Ondaatje
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#93. Maybe this is the way to come out of a war, he thinks. A burned man to care for, some sheets to wash in a fountain, a room painted like a garden. - Author: Michael Ondaatje
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#94. The rulers of the country generally believed that betting eliminates strikes. Men had to work in order to gamble. - Author: Michael Ondaatje
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#95. She had a laugh that hinted it had rolled around once or twice in the mud. - Author: Michael Ondaatje
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#96. If you look at Japanese film, it is made up of collage or bricolage, it is made up of lists, and suddenly when you stand back from the lists you begin to see the pattern of a life. - Author: Michael Ondaatje
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#97. Death means you are in the third person. - Author: Michael Ondaatje
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#98. Her body had been in a war and, as in love, it had used every part of itself. - Author: Michael Ondaatje
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#99. She had always wanted words, she loved them; grew up on them. Words gave her clarity, brought reason, shape. - Author: Michael Ondaatje
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#100. Githa Hariharan's fiction is wonderful-full of subtleties and humor and tenderness. - Author: Michael Ondaatje
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