Can I Quote You?

I have a confession about something not many know about me.  I love quotes. I often Google quotes on whatever subject is tickling my fancy at that moment.

I have one that sits on my dining room table almost every day.  The picture above is a close up of the serving plate that holds a quote by a favorite source of quotes: Maya Angelou.  My other favorites are Helen Keller, Martin Luther King, Jr., Abraham Lincoln, and of course, Dr. Seuss.  (See below) I’ll get into some great quotes from this amazing group later.

The reason I’m thinking so much about quotes right now is because Saturday morning I started a book called “On Fire” by John O’Leary.  I finished it Sunday night. I never do that.  I would have honestly finished it sooner, had I not had kids and responsibilities. From inside the pages that were full of wonderful quotes, jumped out my current favorite quote:

When you know your why, you can endure any how.

It was not written, or said by John.  He was quoting a man named Viktor Frankl.  This man was in a Concentration Camp during WWII and survived torture, starvation, and the pain of losing those he loved.  When he got out, he wrote a book called “Man’s Search for Ultimate Meaning”.  I may have to read that, or at the very least Google quotes from him.  Now, this quote has me searching for my new “why”.

I love good quotes so much, I even kept a fortune from a fortune cookie because when I read it, I had to stop and reflect.  I had not before, nor since, opened a fortune cookie to such inspiration.

Nine little words:

Find a place to stand, and move the world.

Just find your spot, and make big movements to make the world better. I taped it on the monitor of my The Weather Channel computer until I left the place.  I must have been out to lunch with friends at TWC, and decided I needed that inspiration daily.  I still have it somewhere, but the TWC boxes weren’t a priority to unpack. 

I want to share some quotes from some of the greats.  I often wonder if they knew how profound they were as speakers, or if they were just speaking from the heart and we figured it out.

First, Helen Keller, who I’ve admired since 1976.  In 1st grade, I read every book on her I could find, and in 6th grade, I dressed up as her for a project on someone I admire.  I even took the girls to see her birthplace during a road trip last summer.


Back to her quotes, some can really stop you in your tracks when you remember she can’t see, hear, or speak in any conventional manner.

The best and most beautiful things in the world cannot be seen or even touched – they must be felt with the heart.

Everything has its wonders, even darkness and silence, and I learn, whatever state I may be in, therein to be content.

The highest result of education is tolerance.

Oooo, that last one is one of my favorites from her.  Reread it if you must, I have read it so many times.  She took a pretty common thought and said it in a positive way!

For me, quotes, if they are great ones, inspire.

Martin Luther King, Jr. inspires me every time I find a quote from him I hadn’t seen.  I have read all the main ones, but it is those I hadn’t heard that continue to shed light on who he was.  Here is one I love:

Science investigates; religion interprets. Science gives man knowledge, which is power; religion gives man wisdom, which is control. Science deals mainly with facts; religion deals mainly with values. The two are not rivals.

Another favorite from him:

Darkness cannot drive out darkness; only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate; only love can do that.

Listen, though, nothing, and I mean nothing, tops his “I Have a Dream” speech.  I know it’s not obscure, making me super cool and different to love it, but I don’t really think anything can top that speech.

I have a dream that one day right there in Alabama little black boys and little black girls will be able to join hands with little white boys and white girls as sisters and brothers.

The imagery is powerful to me.

We will not be satisfied until justice rolls down like waters and righteousness like a mighty stream.

President Lincoln has so many quotes, we own a book on them.

Those who deny freedom to others deserve it not for themselves.

Whatever you are, be a good one.

Do I not destroy my enemies when I make them my friends?

I’m not sure I could ever live up to that last one.

Let’s not forget the great Dr. Seuss.  There is no way I can even begin to write out all his goodies.  I’ll just post a couple of pictures from my kids’ bedroom walls.

If you have a quote you love, funny, sad, deep, strange, or even very obscure and hard to decipher…. I would LOVE to read it.  Leave it in the comments!

I will leave you with one from a former Peoria, IL, native.  Dan Fogleberg sang it.  I know, it’s a song lyric, but it is still a great quote:

Love when you can, cry when you have to, be who you must, that’s a part of the plan.

3 thoughts on “Can I Quote You?

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