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Face

  • ... it was ... the face of a man difficult to lead, and impossible to drive.

  • Age plays cruel tricks on the human face; all our repressed feelings become visible on the surface, where they harden like a mask.

  • Time engraves our faces with all the tears we have not shed.

  • I have heard that some faces look younger after death; in Rex's case it was a lack of life while still living which gave him a fictitious youth.

  • Throughout our lives, we see in the mirror the same innocent trusting face we have seen there since childhood.

  • Dr. Aspirin's face wore the expression of one who has a soufflé in the oven when they start blasting down the street.

  • I carry my unwritten poems in cipher on my face!

  • Sometimes I not only stand there and take it, I even smile at them and say I'm sorry. When I feel that smile coming onto my face, I wish I could take my face off and stamp on it.

  • She was no longer young and had a mild worried face like a sheep.

  • There was hardly a wrinkle on her placid face. Dr. Lavendar had been heard to say, in this connection, that 'thought made wrinkles.' And the inference was obvious.

  • She looked as new as a peeled egg.

    • Dorothy Parker,
    • "Here We Are," The Collected Stories of Dorothy Parker ()
  • Then she took from her lap a case of gold or some substance near it, and in a minute mirror scanned her face as carefully as if it were verse.

  • Dalloway's face tightened like a fist ...

  • When she smiled the smile was only in the mouth and a little bitter: the face of an incurable yet to be stricken with its malady.

  • Una's face was an unbroken block of calculation, saving where, upon her upper lip, a little down of hair fluttered. Yet it gave one an uncanny feeling. It made one think of a tassel on a hammer.

    • Djuna Barnes,
    • "The Earth," (1916), Smoke and Other Early Stories ()
  • I was so wrinkled I could screw my hats on.

  • I think your whole life shows in your face and you should be proud of that.

  • The happiness of people who are in love and who are loved shows in their faces. They have an expression that's at once very far away and very much part of the present.

  • It has been said that a pretty face is a passport. But it's not, it's a visa, and it runs out fast.

  • She had a creditable collection of features, but one had to take an inventory of them to find out that she was good-looking. The fusing grace had been omitted.

  • ... his face looked as if it had rotted when it should have matured.

  • Wearing makeup is an apology for our actual faces.

  • ... Alfred, with his nose like a sharply cut wedge of Camembert, his tiny gray eyes like dusty, furtive mice.

  • [On being criticized for her serious expression:] I simply ache from smiling. Why are women expected to beam all the time? It's unfair. If a man looks solemn, it's automatically assumed he's a serious person, not a miserable one.

  • Circumstances alter faces.

  • With a triumphant smile, / I confront time / as its edged diamond / sculpts my features.

  • For beauty I am not a star, / There are others more handsome by far; / But my face I don't mind it, / For I am behind it, / It's the people in front that I jar.

  • His skin is the most interesting thing about him, to a lover of the antique. It seems to have been in constant use since the original camel took it out of the ark with him, it is so battered and tattered, so seamy and patched, so disreputably parchment-colored.

  • His mouth was as thin as the cutting edge of an axe and it turned down at the corners in the same way.

  • She had a plump little mouth like a buttonhole worked with a heavy satin stitch.

  • Nothing ruins a face so fast as double-dealing. Your face telling one story to the world. Your heart yanking your face to pieces, trying to let the truth be known. One eyelid'll hang down lower than the other, one side of your mouth'll stay stiff while the other smiles. I know a dozen cases like that.

  • Miss McManaman had gazed at Ada's face. It had every appurtenance faces have, yet it seemed primitive: an early, trial face to which, century after century, endearing and humanizing details would be added. It was a small granite face, made by a hurried man with a sharp chisel.

    • Jessamyn West,
    • "The Singing Lesson," Collected Stories of Jessamyn West ()
  • His expression was at once ravenous and demure; he had a profile as accurate as though it had been snipped out of a piece of paper ...

  • General de Gaulle is again pictured in our newspapers, looking as usual like an embattled codfish.

  • Beware the man whose mouth is small / For he'll give nothing and take all.

    • Stevie Smith,
    • "Beware the Man," A Good Time Was Had by All ()
  • Norma Shearer, the face unclouded by thought ...

  • Yes, I've had a face-lift, but who hasn't?

    • Cher,
    • in Parade ()
  • The nose is surely one of the most impressionable, if not positively erotic, of all our unruly members.

  • ... she drooped her eyelids and put on an expression that made her face look like an unmade bed ...

  • On their faces lay that plastered, flattened look of loyalty to a cause ...

  • He had the kind of face that lost its boyishness before he was twenty and yet would never be quite mature. An underdone sort of man ...

  • ... the dark-haired man stood observing her steadily, with his arms crossed protectively in front of him, wearing an expression only a cello could play.

  • There is no sight so ugly as the human face in anger.

  • Francesca's expression was that of a woman who has been offered a dish of pickled mice ...

  • Her face worked and broke into strained, hardening lines, as if there had been a death — that too-explicit evidence of agony in the desire to communicate.

  • Froody lifted his lip, and it was like a small fat mouse sneering.

  • What is a face? A mask that moves for the will behind it.

  • My God, how fatuous they were, Father Cheney thought, and their indulgent father with the face like a buttered scone, dripping complacency, and their stubbornly blond mother who would price everything in the gift shop after dinner.

  • ... she could imagine his expression ... anxiety and annoyance chasing each other like the hands of a clock around his wide, flat face.

  • He had, he told himself, better things to do than eat fish on Friday with Pike and his wife, a pale flat woman with a face like a fillet of flounder.

  • Mary blushed again. Funny how unbecoming her frequent rise of color was. Her whole face looked chapped, exposed to the wind of imagined censure and disapproval.

  • And I have not learned happily / to live with my face.

    • Diane Wakoski,
    • "I Have Had to Learn to Live With My Face," The Motorcycle Betrayal Poems ()
  • After forty a woman has to choose between losing her figure or her face. My advice is to keep your face, and stay sitting down.

    • Barbara Cartland,
    • in Libby Purves, "Luncheon à la Cartland," in The Times ()
  • Her face is closed as a nut, / closed as a careful snail / or a thousand-year-old seed.

  • If God had to give a woman wrinkles, he might at least have put them on the soles of her feet.

  • The face of a woman is always a help or a hindrance in her life story, whatever the strength or range of her mind, however important the things which concern her. Men have wanted it to be this way.

  • There are deep lines on each side of his mouth and I know they are the scars from the thin blade of life.

  • She had ... the over-alert look of a ventriloquist's dummy.

  • That grin! She could have taken it off her face and put it on the table.

  • He looked like a goat. He had little raisin eyes and a string beard ...

  • Money is what causes wrinkles. (Little kids don't have money, do they? And they don't have wrinkles.)

  • A face that has the marks of having lived intensely, that expresses some phase of life, some dominant quality or intellectual power, constitutes for me an interesting face. For this reason, the face of an older person, perhaps not beautiful in the strictest sense, is usually more appealing than the face of a younger person who has scarcely been touched by life.

    • Doris Ulmann,
    • in Dale Warren, "Doris Ulmann: Photographer-in-Waiting," The Bookman ()
  • Makeup: Western equivalent of the veil. A daily reminder that something is wrong with women's normal looks. A public apology.

  • ... boredom has a tendency to bring out the worst in people's faces.

  • The mind, the tongue, soon learn to dissemble, to guard a secret well, but the human face is a window.

  • She's well featured, if it were not for her nose, and that looks as if it had been thrown at her, and she wasn't particular about having it on firm, in hopes of getting a better one.

  • In every person's face, there is one place that seems to express them most accurately. With my grandmother, you always looked at her mouth.

  • ... very bright teeth as big and orderly as piano keys.

  • After a certain number of years, our faces become our biographies. We get to be responsible for our faces.

    • Cynthia Ozick,
    • in Tom Teicholz, "The Art of Fiction No. 95," The Paris Review ()
  • Nature gives you the face you have at twenty; it is up to you to merit the face you have at fifty.

  • Captain Callowhill's face had all the best features, I thought, of a brace of working ferrets.

  • ... faces deceive, and the loveliness of youth is not like the loveliness of age — an absolute mirror of the soul within.

  • ... he had the kind of mustache a college roommate of hers used to say looked like it had crawled up to find a warm spot to die.

  • She had the bulging forehead of obstinacy ...

  • I have the perfect face for radio.

  • Miss Doggett again looked puzzled; it was as if she had heard that men only wanted one thing, but had forgotten for the moment what it was.

  • Your face is a billboard advertising your philosophy of life!

  • ... the facial contours of youth were deceptive. ... It was only when age began to write on the face that the signature could no longer be forged.

  • ... misery marks the countenance worse than sickness.

  • Orin was pacing the floor with a face as long as the moral law.

  • My mirror is the cemetery of smiles.

    • Tada Chimako,
    • "Mirror," in Aliki Barnstone and Willis Barnstone, eds., A Book of Women Poets From Antiquity to Now ()
  • To be kissed by a man without a mustache was like eating an egg without salt.

  • I don't have false teeth. Do you think I'd buy teeth like these?

  • His eyes were narrow and black, his nose sharp, and his lips thin as a new thought.

  • Of all the things you wear, your expression is the most important.

  • ... fashion in faces goes faster than fashion in clothes.

  • Women were once permitted a mourning period for their youthful faces; it was called middle age. Now we don't even have that. Instead we have the science of embalming disguised as grooming.

  • He had a tragic wisp of a mustache of which he was perversely proud, often patting it as if to make it grow.