Patti Smith, fully Patricia Lee "Patti" Smith

Smith, fully Patricia Lee "Patti" Smith

American Writer, Poet, Recording Artist, Singer-Songwriter and Visual Artist

Author Quotes

We used to laugh at our small selves, saying that I was a bad girl trying to be good and that he was a good boy trying to be bad. Through the years these roles would reverse, then reverse again, until we came to accept our dual natures. We contained opposing principles, light and dark.

When I was in high school, to me being a model was the heaviest. It was the logical extension of being an artist's mistress.

You can't carve up the world. It's not a pie.

There were days, rainy gray days, when the streets of Brooklyn were worthy of a photograph, every window the lens of a Leica, the view grainy and immobile. We gathered our colored pencils and sheets of paper and drew like wild, feral children into the night, until, exhausted, we fell into bed. We lay in each other's arms, still awkward but happy, exchanging breathless kisses into sleep.

We wanted, it seemed, what we already had, a lover and a friend to create with, side by side. To be loyal, yet be free.

When I was young, all I wanted was to write books and be an artist.

You can't, he said. It's like drumming. If you miss a beat, you create another.

There's always new stuff, that's for sure.

We went our separate ways, but within walking distance of one another.

When I was young, I knew William Burroughs really well. And William's secret desire, which he never quite did, was to write a straightforward detective novel.

Your work, coming from a fluid source, can be traced to the naked song of your youth. You spoke then of holding hands with God. Remember, through everything, you have always held that hand, grip it hard, Robert, and don't let go.

These are the times, the times of our own, these are the shapes the world we formed.

We were a crew of misfits, even within the liberal terrain of an art school. We often joked that we were a ?losers? salon.?

When I was younger, I also dreamed of being an opera singer, simply because of Maria Callas.

Those who have suffered understand suffering and therefore extend their hand.

We were as Hansel and Gretel and we ventured out into the black forest of the world.

When I was younger, I felt it was my duty to wake people up. I thought poetry was asleep. I thought rock 'n' roll was asleep.

To be an artist is to enter into competition with god.

We were walking toward the fountain, the epicenter of activity, when an older couple stopped and openly observed us. Robert enjoyed being noticed, and he affectionately squeezed my hand. Oh, take their picture, said the woman to her bemused husband, I think they're artists. Oh, go on, he shrugged. They're just kids.

When Robert and Patti were young and poor, only one of them could afford to go into a gallery at a time. The other waited outside, waiting to hear about it.

To me, punk rock is the freedom to create, freedom to be successful, freedom to not be successful, freedom to be who you are. It's freedom.

Well, I'm not one of those people who needs the limelight. If I'm performing, that's what I'm doing. If I'm not, I don't long for it. I don't need the approval of an audience, or applause.

When we awoke he greeted me with his crooked smile, and I knew he was my knight.

Truthfully, I don't really think of myself as a photographer. I don't have all the disciplines and knowledge of a person who's spent their life devoted to photography.

What a model of an artist was for me was an artist who worked. Picasso was the ultimate model, because the work ethic he had.

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Smith, fully Patricia Lee "Patti" Smith
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American Writer, Poet, Recording Artist, Singer-Songwriter and Visual Artist