Jean Cocteau

French writer and film maker who worked in many artistic media (1889-1963)

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All good music resembles something. Good music stirs by its mysterious resemblance to the objects and feelings which motivated it.
An original artist is unable to copy. So he has only to copy in order to be original.
Art is science made clear.
Art produces ugly things which frequently become more beautiful with time. Fashion, on the other hand, produces beautiful things which always become ugly with time.
I have a piece of great and sad news to tell you: I am dead.
I know that poetry is indispensable, but to what I could not say.
If a hermit lives in a state of ecstasy, his lack of comfort becomes the height of comfort. He must relinquish it.
Mirrors should reflect a little before throwing back images.
Nothing ever gets anywhere. The earth keeps turning round and round and gets nowhere. The moment is the only thing that counts.
One must be a living man and a posthumous artist.
Poetry is indispensable --if I only knew what for.
Since the day of my birth, my death began its walk. It is walking toward me, without hurrying.
The actual tragedies of life bear no relation to one's preconceived ideas. In the event, one is always bewildered by their simplicity, their grandeur of design, and by that element of the bizarre which seems inherent in them.
The actual tragedies of life bear no relation to one's preconceived ideas. In the event, one is always bewildered by their simplicity, their grandeur of design, and by that element of the bizzare which seems inherent in them.
The extreme limit of wisdom-- that is what the public calls madness.
The extreme limit of wisdom--that is what the public calls madness.
The instinct of nearly all societies is to lock up anybody who is truly free. First, society begins by trying to beat you up. If this fails, they try to poison you. If this fails too, they finish by loading honors on your head.
The poet is a liar who always speaks the truth.
The worst tragedy for a poet is to be admired through being misunderstood.
There is always a period when a man with a beard shaves it off. This period does not last. He returns headlong to his beard.
True realism consists in revealing the surprising things which habit keeps covered and prevents us from seeing.
We must believe in luck. For how else can we explain the success of those we don't like

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