word craft



One of my dic­tio­nar­ies defines apho­rism as a short pithy state­ment or max­im. I’m not sure if one can con­sid­er them a lit­er­ary form, but I delight in them. 

Some favorites: 

 “It is as easy to dream a book as it is hard to write one.” (Balzac) 

“Man shall not live by bread alone.” (Matthew 4:4)

“You can pre­tend to be seri­ous; you can’t pre­tend to be wit­ty.” (Sacha Guitry)

“Hap­py fam­i­lies are all alike; every unhap­py fam­i­ly is unhap­py in its own way.” (Tol­stoy) 

“Man is least him­self in his own per­son. Give him a mask and he will tell you the truth.” (Oscar Wilde)

“Pow­er is much more eas­i­ly man­i­fest­ed in destroy­ing than in cre­at­ing.” (Wordsworth)

If I can slip them into my own writ­ing it gives me pleasure. 

“A sailor may choose the wind to ride out of sea­port, but the wind has a mind of its own.” (True Con­fes­sions of Char­lotte Doyle)

“The eas­i­est part of being a par­ent is lov­ing your child. The hard­est part is con­vinc­ing them you do.” (The Most Impor­tant Thing)

 “The cure for unhap­pi­ness is this: What a per­son needs is always more than they say.” (What Do Fish Have To Do with Any­thing?)

“The more I knew of the world the more I knew I knew it not.” (Crispin: Cross of Lead)

“Peo­ple are freer in Amer­i­ca. But there are more tears.” (City of Orphans

“Roads at night are always new.” (Night Jour­neys)

“Ask­ing some­one to say they love you is like buy­ing your­self a birth­day present. It’s more than like­ly exact­ly what you want. But it must make you feel awful­ly sad to get it.” (Some­times I Think I Hear My Name)

Read­ers are wel­come to sup­ply their own favorite apho­rism in the comments.

6 thoughts on “Aphorisms”

  1. “It is always with excite­ment that I wake up in the morn­ing won­der­ing what my intu­ition will toss up to me, like gifts from the sea.” ‑Jonas Salk
    “Your favorite author knows you too well, with­out know­ing you at all.”
    ~Van­shi­ka Dhyani

  2. I’m grow­ing old­er but not up.
    Jim­my Buffett
    I’d rather die while I’m liv­ing than live while I’m dead.
    Jim­my Buffett

  3. “Fairy tales are more than true: not because they tell us that drag­ons exist, but because they tell us that drag­ons can be beat­en.” – Neil Gaiman

  4. My favorite apho­rism: “Noth­ing in all the world is more dan­ger­ous than sin­cere igno­rance and con­sci­en­tious stu­pid­i­ty.” — Mar­tin Luther King, Jr.

  5. “You are per­son­al­ly respon­si­ble for every­thing in your life once you become aware that you are per­son­al­ly respon­si­ble for every­thing in your life.” ‑Bruce Lip­ton, Biol­o­gy of Belief


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