"When I am... completely myself, entirely alone... or during the night when I cannot sleep, it is on such occasions that my ideas flow best and most abundantly. Whence and how these ideas come I know not nor can I force them.
It is a mistake to think that the practice of my art has become easy to me. I assure you, dear friend, nobody has devoted so much time and thought to compositions as I. There is scarcely a famous master whose works I have not frequently and diligently studied. A person of ordinary talent will always be ordinary, whether they travel or not; but one of superior talent will go to pieces if he remains forever in the same place.
I should like to know for what reason idleness is so popular with many young people that it is impossible to dissuade them from it either by words or by chastisements.
Today, is my birthday. The day I was born...
...but the day I come alive, this...
As a little death; when we come to consider it closely, is the true goal of our existence...
All I insist on, and nothing else, is that you should show the whole world that you are not afraid. Be silent, if you choose; but when it is necessary, speak—and speak in such a way that people will remember it."
~ generally quoted,