Marjorie Kinnan Rawlings

Marjorie Kinnan

American Author of "The Yearling"

Author Quotes

I get as much satisfaction from preparing a perfect dinner for a few good friends as from turning out a perfect paragraph in my writing.

When a wave of love takes over a human being... such an exaltation takes him that he knows he has put his finger on the pulse of the great secret and the great answer.

If there can be such a thing as instinctual memory, the consciousness of land and water must lie deeper in the core of us than any knowledge of our fellow beings. We were bred of the earth before we were born of our mothers. Once born, we can live without our mothers or our fathers or any other kin or friend, or even human love. We cannot live without the earth or apart from it, and something is shriveled in man?s heart when he turns away from it and concerns himself only with the affairs of men.

Who owns Cross Creek? The red-birds, I think, more than I, for they will have their nests even in the face of delinquent mortgages. It seems to me that the earth may be borrowed, but not bought. It may be used, but not owned. It gives itself in response to love and tending, offers its seasonal flowering and fruiting. But we are tenants and not possessors, lovers, and not masters. Cross Creek belongs to the wind and the rain, to the sun and the seasons, to the cosmic secrecy of seed, and beyond all, to time...

Jody said, Ma, you're shore good.Oh, yes. When it's rations.Well, I'd a heap ruther you was good about rations and mean about other things.Oh, I be mean, be I?Only about jest a very few things, he soothed her. ? Marjorie Kinnan Rawlings, The Yearling

Women always worry about the things that men forget; men always worry about the things women remember.

A part of the placidity of the South comes from the sense of well-being that follows the heart-and-body-warming consumption of breads fresh from the oven. We serve cold baker's bread to our enemies, trusting that they will never impose on our hospitality again.

No man should have proprietary rights over land who does not use that land wisely and lovingly.

Writing is agony for me. I work at it eight hours every day, hoping to get six pages, but I am satisfied with three.

A pie so delicate, so luscious, that I hope to be propped up on my dying bed and fed a generous portion. Then I think that I should refuse outright to die, for life would be too good to relinquish.

Now he understood. This was death. Death was a silence that gave back no answer.

Writing is agony. I stay at my typewriter for eight hours every day when I?m working and keep as free as possible from all distractions for the rest of the day. I aim to do six pages a day but I?m satisfied with three. Often there are only a few lines to show.

A queer thing happens to me whenever I am all through with one piece of work, and I have wondered if it was common to all writers. Before I go to work on something else, I drop into the most terrific despair. It has always been so ? Then when the new work takes hold of my mind, nothing exists but the necessity for working it out.

Sift each of us through the great sieve of circumstance and you have a residue, great or small as the case may be, that is the man or the woman.

You do somethin' for me? Go tell Twink I'll meet her at the old grove Tuesday about dusk-dark.Jody was frozen. He burst out, I won't do it. I hate her. Ol' yellow-headed somethin'.

A woman has got to love a bad man once or twice in her life, to be thankful for a good one.

Somewhere beyond the sink-hole, past the magnolia, under the live oaks, a boy and a yearling ran side by side, and were gone forever.

You know what I wisht I had, Ma? A pouch like a 'possum, to tote things.

A woman never forgets the men she could have had; a man, the women he couldn?t.

Sorrow was like the wind. It came in gusts.

You've seed how things goes in the world o' men. You've knowed men to be low-down and mean. You've seed ol' Death at his tricks...Ever' man wants life to be a fine thing, and a easy. 'Tis fine, boy, powerful fine, but 'tain't easy. Life knocks a man down and he gits up and it knocks him down agin. I've been uneasy all my life...I've wanted life to be easy for you. Easier'n 'twas for me. A man's heart aches, seein' his young uns face the world. Knowin' they got to get their guts tore out, the way his was tore. I wanted to spare you, long as I could. I wanted you to frolic with your yearlin'. I knowed the lonesomeness he eased for you. But ever' man's lonesome. What's he to do then? What's he to do when he gits knocked down? Why, take it for his share and go on.

Don't go gittin faintified on me.

The human mind messing interests as if they were of fluff thorns, all raised by the wind and driven

Eulalie in a remote fashion belonged to him, Jody, to do with as he pleased, if only to throw potatoes at her.

The individual man is transitory, but the pulse of life and of growth goes on after he is gone, buried under a wreath of magnolia leaves.

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Marjorie Kinnan
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American Author of "The Yearling"