Franz Kafka

«I think we ought to read only the kind of books that wound and stab us. If the book we’re reading doesn’t wake us up with a blow on the head, what are we reading it for?»

Franz Kafka


«What's happened to me,' he thought. It was no dream.»

Franz Kafka


«The limited circle is pure.»

Franz Kafka


«Kill me, or you are a murderer.»

Franz Kafka


«So then you’re free?’»

Franz Kafka


«Hombro con hombro, una cadena de hermanos, una sangre no ya encerrada en la mezquina circulación del cuerpo, sino circulando con una dulzura y sin embargo regresando sin fin a través de China.»

Franz Kafka


«Writer speaks a stench.»

Franz Kafka


«The door could not be heard slamming; they had probably left it open, as is the custom in homes where a great misfortune has occurred.»

Franz Kafka


«A non-writing writer is a monster courting insanity."»

Franz Kafka


«People who walk across dark bridges, past saints,»

Franz Kafka


«What is written is merely the dregs of experience.»

Franz Kafka


«Most men are not wicked... They are sleep-walkers, not evil evildoers.»

Franz Kafka


«Every word first looks around in every direction before letting itself be written down by me.»

Franz Kafka


«L'éternité, c'est long ... surtout vers la fin.»

Franz Kafka


«I think we ought to read only the kind of books that wound and stab us.»

Franz Kafka


«All I am is literature, and I am not able or willing to be anything else.»

Franz Kafka


«Writing is utter solitude, the descent into the cold abyss of oneself.»

Franz Kafka


«The truth is always an abyss. One must — as in a swimming pool — dare to dive from the quivering springboard of trivial everyday experience and sink into the depths, in order to later rise again — laughing and fighting for breath — to the now doubly illuminated surface of things.»

Franz Kafka


«However, Gregor had become much calmer. All right, people did not understand his words any more, although they seemed clear enough to him, clearer than previously, perhaps because had gotten used to them»

Franz Kafka


«A book must be the axe for the frozen sea within us.»

Franz Kafka


«Es perfectamente imaginable que el esplendor de la vida está dispuesto, siempre en toda plenitud, alrededor de cada uno, pero cubierto de un velo, en las profundidades, invisible muy lejos. Sin embargo está ahí, no hostil, no a disgusto, no sordo, viene si uno lo llama con la palabra correcta, por su nombre correcto, Es la esencia de la magia, que no crea, sino llama.»

Franz Kafka


«But I’m not guilty,” said K. “there’s been a mistake. How is it even possible for someone to be guilty? We’re all human beings here, one like the other.” “That is true” said the priest “but that is how the guilty speak»

Franz Kafka


«We need the books that affect us like a disaster, that grieve us deeply, like the death of someone we loved more than ourselves, like being banished into forests far from everyone, like a suicide. A book must be the axe for the frozen sea inside us.»

Franz Kafka


«Youth is happy because it has the capacity to see beauty. Anyone who keeps the ability to see beauty never grows old.»

Franz Kafka


«Even the merest gesture is holy if it is filled with faith.»

Franz Kafka


«One of the first signs of the beginning of understanding is the wish to die. This life appears unbearable, another unattainable. One is no longer ashamed of wanting to die; one asks to be moved from the old cell, which one hates, to a new one, which one willl only in time come to hate. In this there is also a residue of belief that during the move the master will chance to come along the corridor, look at the prisoner and say: "This man is not to be locked up again, He is to come with me.»

Franz Kafka


«By your side I’m most quiet and most unquiet, most inhibited and most free.»

Franz Kafka


«Life is merely terrible; I feel it as few others do. Often — and in my inmost self perhaps all the time — I doubt whether I am a human being.»

Franz Kafka


«One of the first signs of the beginnings of understanding is the wish to die. This life appears unbearable, another unattainable. One is no longer ashamed of wanting to die; one asks to be moved from the old cell, which one hates, to a new one, which one will only in time come to hate.»

Franz Kafka


«I am constantly trying to communicate something incommunicable, to explain something inexplicable, to tell about something I only feel in my bones and which can only be experienced in those bones. Basically it is nothing other than this fear we have so often talked about, but fear spread to everything, fear of the greatest as of the smallest, fear, paralyzing fear of pronouncing a word, although this fear may not only be fear but also a longing for something greater than all that is fearful.»

Franz Kafka