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Betty Smith

  • Look at everything as though you were seeing it either for the first or last time. Then your time on earth will be filled with glory.

  • The difference between rich and poor ... is that the poor do everything with their own hands and the rich hire hands to do things.

  • The library was a little old shabby place. Francie thought it was beautiful. The feeling she had about it was as good as the feeling she had about church.

  • 'It's only for now,' we say when we're young. And one fine day we wake up and find out that what's only for now is the whole Goddamned thing!

  • Occasionally there is a moment in a person's life when he takes a great stride forward in wisdom, humility, or disillusionment. For a split second he comes into a kind of cosmic understanding. For a trembling breath of time he knows all there is to know. He is loaned the gift the poet yearned for — seeing himself as others see him.

  • ... she really did understand. Unfortunately, understanding doesn't always connote sanction, conversion, or forgiveness.

  • A child forgets a time of hunger but never forgets the aching want of other things.

  • Bad quarrels come when two people are wrong. Worse quarrels come when two people are right.

  • Is it not so that a son what is bad to his mother is bad to his wife?

  • She felt, vaguely, that she had given away her childhood that night. She had given it to him or he had taken it from her, and made it into something wonderful. In a way, her life was his now.

  • ... all four ... had married in the same year ... And all of their wives still wore their hair the same way. Why is this? Is it because they try out different styles to attract a feller and when they land him they hold on to the old hair style because it worked in the first place? Or is it that they don't care no more after they got a feller hooked?

Betty Smith, U.S. novelist, playwright

(1896 - 1972)

Full name: Betty Wehner Smith.