He gave it for his opinion, that whosoever could make two ears of corn or two blades of grass to grow upon a spot of ground where only one grew before, would deserve better of mankind, and do more essential service to his country, than the whole race of politicians put together. ~ Jonathan Swift in Gulliver's Travels (1726)

I been away a long time. ~ "Chief" in One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest (1962) by Ken Kesey

It was not
I who lived, but life rather
that lived me.

~ R. S. Thomas, "In Context" in Frequencies (1978) ~

He had this idea. It was kind of a virologist idea. He believed that you could cure racism and hate — literally cure it, by injecting music and love into people's lives.
One day he was scheduled to perform at a peace rally, gunmen came to his house and shot him down. Two days later, he walked out on that stage and sang.
Somebody asked him "why" he said: "The people that are trying to make this world worse are not taking a day off — how can I? — Light up the darkness." ~ Robert Neville to Anna, about Bob Marley, in I Am Legend (2007) based upon the novel by Richard Matheson.

We don't have education we have inspiration; if I was educated I would be a damn fool. ~ Bob Marley, as recorded in Time Will Tell (1992)

Never laugh at live dragons. ~ J. R. R. Tolkien, in The Hobbit, Ch. 12 (1937)

Great and little cannot understand one another. But in every child born of man, Father Redwood, lurks some seed of greatness — waiting for the Food. ~ H. G. Wells, in The Food of the Gods and How It Came to Earth

Whoever undertakes to set himself up as a judge of Truth and Knowledge is shipwrecked by the laughter of the gods. ~ Edmund Burke in the Preface to Brissot's Address to his Constituents (1794)

In a dream I saw Jesus and My God Pan sitting together in the heart of the forest.
They laughed at each other's speech, with the brook that ran near them, and the laughter of Jesus was the merrier. And they conversed long. ~ Khalil Gibran, in Jesus, The Son of Man (1928), "Sarkis an old Greek Shepherd, called the madman: Jesus and Pan"

I'm struck by how laughter connects you with people. It's almost impossible to maintain any kind of distance or any sense of social hierarchy when you're just howling with laughter. Laughter is a force for democracy. ~ John Cleese, in The Human Face (2001)