"I think that the Cold War was an exceptional and unnecessary piece of cruelty."
"He who joyfully marches to music in rank and file has already earned my contempt. He has been given a large brain by mistake, since for him the spinal cord would suffice."Jane Smiley on Albert Einstein
"One of the greatest casualties of the war in Vietnam is the Great Society... shot down on the battlefield of Vietnam."Jane Smiley on Martin Luther King, Jr.
"The release of atomic energy has not created a new problem. It has merely made more urgent the necessity of solving an existing one."Jane Smiley on Albert Einstein
"Every gun that is made, every warship launched, every rocket fired, signifies in the final sense a theft from those who hunger and are not fed, those who are cold and are not clothed."Jane Smiley on Dwight D. Eisenhower
"We shall defend our island, whatever the cost may be, we shall fight on the beaches, we shall fight on the landing grounds, we shall fight in the fields and in the streets, we shall fight in the hills we shall never surrender."Jane Smiley on Winston Churchill
"I learned why 'out riding alone' is an oxymoron: An equestrian is never alone, is always sensing the other being, the mysterious but also understandable living being that is the horse."
"I discovered that the horse is life itself, a metaphor but also an example of life's mystery and unpredictability, of life's generosity and beauty, a worthy object of repeated and ever changing contemplation."
"There are hundreds of Frank Lloyd Wright buildings around the United States and in other countries, too. Wright lived into his 90s, and one of his most famous buildings, the Guggenheim Museum in New York, was completed just before his death. Wright buildings look like Wright buildings - that is their paradox."
"Vets do what doctors used to - diagnose the injury or the condition, patch it up as best they can and remind you that these things happen and that in life we are also in the midst of death."
"Somehow, knowing that Alzheimer's is coming mocks all one's aspirations - to tell stories, to think through certain issues as only a novel can do, to be recognised for one's accomplishments and hard work - in a way that old familiar death does not."