"Perhaps one did not want to be loved so much as to be understood."
"But I don’t want comfort. I want God, I want poetry, I want real danger, I want freedom, I want goodness. I want sin."
"Recently, when I got out of the elevator at my usual hour, it occurred to me that my life, whose days more and more repeat themselves down to the smallest detail, resembles that punishment in which each pupil must according to his offense write down the same meaningless (in repetition, at least) sentence ten times, a hundred times or even oftener; except that in my case the punishment is given me with only this limitation: “as many times as you can stand it."
"Perhaps those deprived of beauty perceive it most instinctively."
"That purple-lined palace of sweet sin."
"There were moments when he looked on evil simply as a mode through which he could realise his conception of the beautiful."
"I had the lonely child’s habit of making up stories and holding conversations with imaginary persons, and I think from the very start my literary ambitions were mixed up with the feeling of being isolated and undervalued. I knew that I had a facility with words and a power of facing unpleasant facts, and I felt that this created a sort of private world in which I could get my own back for my failure in everyday life."
"One writes of scars healed, a loose parallel to the pathology of the skin, but there is no such thing in the life of an individual. There are open wounds, shrunk sometimes to the size of a pin-prick but wounds still. The marks of suffering are more comparable to the loss of a finger, or of the sight of an eye. We may not miss them, either, for one minute in a year, but if we should there is nothing to be done about it."