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Bess Streeter Aldrich

  • There is no division nor subtraction in the heart-arithmetic of a good mother. There are only addition and multiplication.

  • Love is the light that you see by.

  • When I was young I had no means or time, and now I have the means and time, I have no youth.

  • ... not all clever words are true. ... And inversely most things that are true are not clever.

  • Nebraska was favored of the gods. Ceres' throne was in Nebraska. It was as though she chose the state from all others upon which to lavish her goods, — as though the bulk of her fortune had been given to a favorite child.

  • They are the most painful tears in the world ... the tears of the aged ... for they come from dried beds where the emotions have long burned low.

  • Some girls are apparently born with dates; some through much personal activity, achieve them; but others seem by necessity to have dates thrust upon them.

  • It was true, she thought, that the big things awe us but the little things touch us.

  • It takes a small town to keep you humble.

  • Sometime in their lives, everybody wanted to go home.

  • ... Mrs. Schneiderman's theory of life was that earth held no sorrow that food could not heal ...

    • Bess Streeter Aldrich,
    • "Welcome Home, Hal!" The Man Who Caught the Weather ()
  • The moon came up, yellow as a prairie cowslip.

  • Biggest affirmative argument I know in favor of 'If a man die, shall he live again?' is just the way you feel inside you that nothin' can stop you from livin' on.

  • Cut down that there maple tree outside the lean-to door, burn the trunk to ashes, and Ma'll up and leach the ashes for lye. Scatter the leaves and they'll make winter mulchin'. Seeds that have been shook off will come up. No, sir, if you can't kill that old maple you ain't goin' to be able to kill me. I'll be in somethin' a hundred years from now, even if it's just the prairie grass or the wind in the timber or the wild geese ridin' out the storm.

  • Christmas Eve was a night of song that wrapped itself about you like a shawl. But it warmed more than your body. It warmed your heart ... filled it, too, with melody that would last forever. Even though you grew up and found you could never quite bring back the magic feeling of this night, the melody would stay in your heart always — a song for all the years.

  • You were courted and got married in the magic world, but you had your baby in the real one.

  • Our souls may all be equal in the sight of the Lord, but our gumption and ingenuity ain't. So the results of man's labor will never be equal.

  • Things last so much longer than people.

  • ... thoughts are acrobats, agile and quite often untrustworthy.

  • It is better to remember our love as it was in the springtime.

  • Except for our higher order of minds we are like the little moles under the earth carrying out blindly the work of digging, thinking our own dark passage-ways constitute all there is to the world.

Bess Streeter Aldrich, U.S. writer

(1881 - 1954)