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Waking Up at Rembrandt's

Thomas Lloyd Qualls

Top 10 Best Quotes

“It's true we all build imaginary prisons for ourselves. Believe that we are trapped behind the invisible bars of the lives we have somehow carelessly constructed for ourselves, despite our youthful promises to ourselves. We see adults who are stagnant and miserable as we grow up. They graffiti the walls behind them with their mistakes and we swear secret oaths that we will heed those warnings. We’re much too clever, we know all the shortcuts and the back alleys.”

“You might think of a thought as an invisible, innocuous little thing. Something that barely exists. But a thought is something hard to conceal. Hold a thought and it melts all over your hands. Touch something else and now you’ve left traces of it. Hide it under your shirt and it bleeds through.”

“To paint one must forget everything else. Where you live, who you know, what you eat, when to sleep. The landscape of the canvas becomes your only reality. The planet you inhabit is a single plane of infinite dimensions, stretched like a guitar string, and standing before you like a concubine waiting for your command.”

“The painter knew that color was not something you controlled but something you set free. He believed that color knew its way home.”

“In the end there is only light and dark. And the two are not so far apart.”

“You are tired of always needing answers. Always answering questions. Always asking questions that demand answers. Pretending all the questions have to be answered. Pretending there are actually answers. And even getting paid to convince others they’re true. That there is such a thing as right answers.”

“The planet you inhabit is a single plane of infinite dimensions, stretched like a guitar string, and standing before you like a concubine waiting for your command.”

“Life isn’t really linear. Although it’s generally perceived that way. The stories we tell are woven like snakes around a divining rod. A center of time containing all that’s ever been told and heard. Remembered and forgotten. Lost and found. Our pasts, presents and futures are unwound, stretched flat, cut into pieces and held up with human arms.”

“It’s hard to say where a story begins and ends. You have to draw an arbitrary line somewhere. Somewhere between perception and reality. Between what is spoken and what is heard. Between what is written and what is edited out. I know this, you can’t have an ending without a beginning. Even if they are really just random pieces of the middle that tend to stand out. Staccato notes on the page. Points on a circle.”

“The painter knew the mirror lied. And the canvas told the truth.”

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