Don Marquis


Publishing a volume of verse is like dropping a rose petal down the Grand Canyon and waiting for the echo.

I never think at all when I write. Nobody can do two things at the same time and do them both well.

In order to influence a child, one must be careful not to be that child’s parent or grandparent.

An optimist is a guy that never has had much experience.

When you can’t have anything else, you can have virtue.

Middle age is the time when a man is always thinking that in a week or two he will feel as good as ever.

The trouble with the public is that there is too much of it; what we need in public is less quantity and more quality.

An idea isn’t responsible for the people who believe in it.

If you make people think they’re thinking, they’ll love you; but if you really make them think, they’ll hate you.

Pity the meek, for they shall inherit the earth.

Honesty is a good thing, but it is not profitable to its possessor unless it is kept under control.

Man cannot be uplifted; he must be seduced into virtue.

The Almost Perfect State

A pessimist is a person who has had to listen to too many optimists.

Ideas pull the trigger, but instinct loads the gun.

The Almost Perfect State

Did you ever notice that when a politician does get an idea he usually gets it all wrong.

A demagogue is a person with whom we disagree as to which gang should mismanage the country.

The successful people are the ones that think up things for the rest of the world to keep busy at.

Procrastination is the art of keeping up with yesterday.

The most pleasant and useful persons are those who leave some of the problems of the universe for God to worry about.

Punctuality is one of the cardinal virtues. Always insist on it in your subordinates and dependents.

One of the most important things to remember about infant care is: don’t change diapers in midstream.

Ours is a world where people don’t know what they want and are willing to go through hell to get it.