Purple Passages and Fine China


La Lectura es el viaje de los que no pueden tomar el tren.        – F. Croisset

(Reading is the journey of those who cannot take the train.)

Marian Reading_14mos._2x4_300

Some books are to be tasted, others to be swallowed, and some few to be chewed and digested . . . .           Sir Francis Bacon  “Of Studies”

I find television very educating. Every time somebody turns on the set, I go into the other room and read a book.     Groucho Marx

It is what you read when you don’t have to that determines what you will be when you can’t help it.    Oscar Wilde


When we laugh, a sort of temporary anesthesia is released within us that blocks the pain as our attention is diverted.      Chuck Swindoll in Five Meaningful Minutes a Day

I love people who make me laugh. I honestly think it’s the thing I like most, to laugh. It cures a multitude of ills. It’s probably the most important thing in a person.    Audrey Hepburn


Friendship is delicate as [china], once broken it can be fixed but there will always be cracks.    Waqar Ahmed

Pitcher Broken

It’s a wise husband who will buy his wife such fine china that she won’t trust him to wash the dishes.    – Honoré de Balzac


I’ll love you, dear, I’ll love you till China and Africa meet and the river jumps over the mountain and salmon sing in the street.      – W. H. Auden

We have a week and a half left of work and we are like delicate china speeding toward a brick wall. Sounds fun, huh?     – Jennifer Anniston

Start living now. Stop saving the good china for that special occasion. Stop withholding your love until that special person materializes. Every day you are alive is a special occasion. Every minute, every breath, is a gift from God.     

                   Mary Manin Morrissey

A comment? Another quotation? Both are welcome here!


34 thoughts on “Purple Passages and Fine China

  1. Is that you in the photo, Marian? What a great (and adorable) photo! Great quotes–as usual. I’ve read some of them before, but I particularly like Bacon’s well-known quote on books and Auden’s line on loving.


    1. You are right about the photo, Merril.

      You pointed out some of my favorite quotes, including the one by Auden, who wasn’t referring to fine china at all but to the audacious love of a man for a woman. Thanks again today for initiating the discussion.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. What a beautiful picture of you. Your quotes are a great reminder to always find laughter even in our deepest pain. Cherish friendships so that we don’t have cracks. I had two very close friendships that were broken through a third party. Although we have fixed it the cracks are there. What was once a primary friendship fell to an associate friend so trust is not there.

    Friends are gifts from God to have to trust and to love through all our faults. When you have a good friend, treasure that relationship as you would fine china.
    Thank you for your post. Have a nice day.


    1. The broken china is a great metaphor for your experiences – mine too. Trust is at the heart of friendship. Trust fractured is like broken china, fixable but never again perfect. Thanks always for expressing your point of view, Gloria.


    1. I do know that you teach Spanish, so reading the first lines had to be a breeze for you. Now you can check on Croisset, which sounds like a French name to me. Thanks for noticing and commenting, Georgette.


  3. Delightful, eclectic, just like YOU, Marian.

    Here’s an old favorite to add to the reading collection:

    There is no frigate like a book (1263)
    Emily Dickinson, 1830 – 1886

    There is no Frigate like a Book
    To take us Lands away,
    Nor any Coursers like a Page
    Of prancing Poetry –
    This Traverse may the poorest take
    Without oppress of Toll –
    How frugal is the Chariot
    That bears a Human soul.


    1. I am glad you posted Dickinson’s whole poem for those of us who remember only the first few lines. And the closing lines which remind us that even poverty doesn’t prevent brave souls from reading books.

      Great addition to the collection, Shirley!


  4. What a perfect picture of you! At first I thought it had to be too long ago to be you, but I see that you’ve affirmed that it is. Very sweet. I like your inclusion of Jennifer Anniston’s quote in with the more literary types. How cool is that. It has a nice turn of phrase: “delicate china speeding toward a brick wall.” I had not heard that before so I do wonder if she borrowed it or made it up–context of the end of their long TV run??


    1. I like especially your observation about the Jennifer Anniston quote, either part of a script or expressed at a moment of extreme emotion. I believe the source for that one is brainyquotes.com

      Always thankful for your feedback, Melodie.


      1. I would think, also, that the Jennifer Anniston quote was from the ending of the show. It was on for so long and I would think the cast and crew would be very emotional towards the end, and maybe having had to hold themselves together. I never saw the show on TV but have borrowed the DVDS and it is quite funny.


  5. Marian — I love the photo of you as a little girl, nose in book! Of the quotes you shared, I particularly resonated with Groucho Marx’s thoughts on television, and Audrey Hepburn’s thoughts on laughter.

    Rather than a quote, I’ll share a bumper sticker that was part of our library’s give-away at their fund raiser last year in Crystal Lake, Illinois:

    Reading can seriously damage your ignorance


      1. Laurie, I am definitely borrowing that quote to put on the Library bulletin board at school! I have not heard/seen that one before. At Christmas my bulletin board display is READING IS A PRESENT YOU GIVE YOURSELF.


  6. Lovely, lovely post and what a precious photograph of little girl Marian! I’m still challenged to use my good china more often and wonder what will become of it one day. It holds such dear memories of my mom for me.


  7. Hello Marian I’m your new Lady from U.K… and an avid lovely Laurie fan .
    I collect quotes like I collect books …I love them . I really love ‘ Reading is for those who can not take the train ‘ so good .
    I tend to write quotes in journals or scraps of paper or even on the back of bills to help me like them a bit better.
    I have found this one in my present journals ;
    ‘It’s one of the blessing of old friends that you can afford to be stupid with them’
    sorry forgot to write the author .


    1. Happy, happy to see you showing up here again, Cherry. You can expect me to post in Purple Passages monthly. In fact, you can click on Purple Passages via the menu bar on the Welcome page and catch up with previous posts with quotes. (This is # 14.) And in between I sprinkle my posts liberally with quotes. Thanks for your latest contribution: “It’s one of the blessing of old friends that you can afford to be stupid with them.”


  8. Lovely quotes thank you Marian! And comments/quotes from others too … poor guy re putting the long stemmed glasses in the dishwasher.
    Plato: Everything that deceives, may be said to enchant


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