Quotes by W. H. Auden (Poet/English).

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Among those whom I like or admire, I can find no common denominator, but among those whom I love, I can: all of them make me laugh.
• W. H. Auden
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One cannot walk through an assembly factory and not feel that one is in Hell.
• W. H. Auden
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Like everything which is not the involuntary result of fleeting emotion but the creation of time and will, any marriage, happy or unhappy, is infinitely more interesting than any romance, however passionate.
• W. H. Auden
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All that we are not stares back at what we are.
• W. H. Auden
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A tremendous number of people in America work very hard at something that bores them. Even a rich man thinks he has to go down to the office everyday. Not because he likes it but because he can't think of anything else to do.
• W. H. Auden
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Before people complain of the obscurity of modern poetry, they should first examine their consciences and ask themselves with how many people and on how many occasions they have genuinely and profoundly shared some experience with another.
• W. H. Auden
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All sins tend to be addictive, and the terminal point of addiction is damnation.
• W. H. Auden
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To save your world you asked this man to die; would this man, could he see you now, ask why?
• W. H. Auden
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In times of joy, all of us wished we possessed a tail we could wag.
• W. H. Auden
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Murder is commoner among cooks than among members of any other profession.
• W. H. Auden
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We are all here on earth to help others; what on earth the others are here for I don't know.
• W. H. Auden
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Every autobiography is concerned with two characters, a Don Quixote, the Ego, and a Sancho Panza, the Self.
• W. H. Auden
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Death is the sound of distant thunder at a picnic.
• W. H. Auden
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No human being is innocent, but there is a class of innocent human actions called Games.
• W. H. Auden
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Some books are undeservedly forgotten; none are undeservedly remembered.
• W. H. Auden
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If time were the wicked sheriff in a horse opera, I'd pay for riding lessons and take his gun away.
• W. H. Auden
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The center that I cannot find is known to my unconscious mind.
• W. H. Auden
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Murder is unique in that it abolishes the party it injures, so that society has to take the place of the victim and on his behalf demand atonement or grant forgiveness; it is the one crime in which society has a direct interest.
• W. H. Auden
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Every American poet feels that the whole responsibility for contemporary poetry has fallen upon his shoulders, that he is a literary aristocracy of one.
• W. H. Auden
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In relation to a writer, most readers believe in the Double Standard: they may be unfaithful to him as often as they like, but he must never, never be unfaithful to them.
• W. H. Auden
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It's frightening how easy it is to commit murder in America. Just a drink too much. I can see myself doing it. In England, one feels all the social restraints holding one back. But here, anything can happen.
• W. H. Auden
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Some writers confuse authenticity, which they ought always to aim at, with originality, which they should never bother about.
• W. H. Auden
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A poet can write about a man slaying a dragon, but not about a man pushing a button that releases a bomb.
• W. H. Auden
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All works of art are commissioned in the sense that no artist can create one by a simple act of will but must wait until what he believes to be a good idea for a work comes to him.
• W. H. Auden
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Choice of attention - to pay attention to this and ignore that - is to the inner life what choice of action is to the outer. In both cases, a man is responsible for his choice and must accept the consequences, whatever they may be.
• W. H. Auden

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