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Quotations about Deserts


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The desert — beautiful, lonely, merciless. ~Creek Stewart, SOS: How to Survive, 2017


What draws us into the desert is the search for something intimate in the remote. ~Edward Abbey


A mesa loomed up, spare and craggy. It was striped with horizontal layers: a vein of crimson, a seam of granite, a stratum of chalk. ~Abby Geni, The Wildlands, 2018


I'm never, ever happier than when I'm in the desert. ~Jeremy Clarkson, The Grand Tour, "The Beach (Buggy) Boys," 2016  [S1, E7]


I have always loved the desert. One sits down on a desert sand dune, sees nothing, hears nothing. Yet through the silence something throbs, and gleams… ~Antoine de Saint-Exupéry, The Little Prince


If you would know the world go into a desert and study your own heart. ~Austin O'Malley (1858–1932), Thoughts of a Recluse, 1898


My favorite color… the seam of a desert horizon. ~Eileen R. Tabios


Desert — a piece of Earth that God forgot to water. ~Terri Guillemets


All I think about sometimes is desert. Mountains or woods will do, but where I want to be at any given moment, if you catch me staring off, is where boulders are warm to the touch, where rain rarely falls and the air feels like it's being played on the highest, tightest string of a violin, as if you could barely squeeze a drop of water from it. Some people dream in color. I dream in canyons. ~Craig Childs, March 2019, Bean Tree Farm, Tucson Mountains, Arizona, Introduction to Virga & Bone: Essays from Dry Places, 2019


The Desert is—
A brown maiden
Basking in the sun.
~Ruth E. Meakin (b.1888), "April's Secret"


Nothing stood between us and the vibrant desert. Staring at the unlimited space fanned out before me, I felt magnified and ethereal, yet grounded... I'd forgotten how enlivening it could feel, seeing clearly and far. Aridity frees light. It also unleashes grandeur... Desert beauty was "sublime" in the way that the romantic poets had used the word — not peaceful dales but rugged mountain faces, not reassuring but daunting nature, the earth's skin and haunches, its spines and angles arching prehistorically in sunlight. ~Julene Bair, The Ogallala Road: A Memoir of Love and Reckoning, 2014


...letting the desert scratch its own thorny poetry on the enormous moon. ~Douglas Woolf, Wall to Wall, 1962


It was the farthest she had ever been from home, not only in miles but in feeling. The vastness of the desert frightened her. Everything looked too far away, even the cloudless sky. There was nowhere you could hide in such emptiness. ~James Carlos Blake, The Rules of Wolfe: A Border Noir, 2013


Content can soothe, where e'er by fortune placed,
Can rear a garden in a desert waste.
~Henry Kirke White (1785–1806), "Clifton Grove"


In the empire of desert, water is the king and shadow is the queen. ~Mehmet Murat İldan


The desert is a scorpion's tale of stings and survival. ~Terri Guillemets


The desert is a place of bones, where the innards are turned out... ~Vera Nazarian, The Perpetual Calendar of Inspiration: Old Wisdom for a New World, 2010


Man is a complex being: he makes deserts bloom — and lakes die. ~Gil Stern


What makes the desert beautiful... is that somewhere it hides a well… ~Antoine de Saint-Exupéry, The Little Prince


"Desert?"
"Sand," Ragen explained. "Nothing but sand for miles in every direction. No food nor water but what you carry, and nothing to shade you from the scorching sun."
"And people live there?" Arlen asked.
"Oh, yes," Ragen said.
~Peter V. Brett, The Warded Man, 2009


Great big yellow mule-ear sunflowers are blooming along the dirt road... scattered more thinly over the rest of the desert are the others: yellow borage, Indian paintbrush, scarlet penstemon, skyrocket gilia, prickly pear, hedgehog cactus, purple locoweed, the coral-red globemallow, dockweed, sand verbena. Loveliest of all, however... with a fragrance like that of orange blossoms, is the cliffrose... ~Edward Abbey, Desert Solitaire, 1968


This is a storytelling landscape. ~Craig Childs, The Way Out: A True Story of Ruin and Survival, 2004  [Southern Utah —tg]


"Where are the people?" The little prince finally resumed the conversation. "It's a little lonely in the desert…" "It's also lonely with people," said the snake. ~Antoine de Saint-Exupéry, The Little Prince


Sometimes you need to spend time in an empty desert to discover how full your soul is. ~Terri Guillemets


The desert tells a different story every time one ventures on it… ~Robert Edison Fulton, Jr., One Man Caravan, 1937


God takes everyone he loves through a desert. It is his cure for our wandering hearts, restlessly searching for a new Eden. ~Paul E. Miller, A Praying Life: Connecting With God In A Distracting World, 2009


Some say that true love is a mirage; seek it anyway, for all else is surely desert. ~Robert Brault, rbrault.blogspot.com


You cannot blame the Sahara alone for the troubles. But you should also not see the desert simply as some faraway place of little rain. There are many forms of thirst. ~William Langewiesche, Sahara Unveiled: A Journey Across the Desert, 1996


But let not our thoughts be only of happiness. For does not the old Arab proverb — "all sunshine makes a desert" — faithfully remind us that the cloud and the storm are likewise needed for the most complete and satisfactory results? ~William P. Finney, 1907


A scream into the desert returns the echo of your own soul. ~Terri Guillemets


The best gift of the desert is God's presence. ~Paul E. Miller, A Praying Life: Connecting With God In A Distracting World, 2009



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