"Creative people are curious, flexible, persistent, and independent with a tremendous spirit of adventure and a love of play." - Henri Matisse (Matisse on Art)
"The capacity to relax and play renews the spirit and makes it possible for us to come to the work of writing clearer, ready for the journey." - Bell Hooks (Remembered Rapture: The Writer at Work)
"To enter into play is to enter into uncertainty. It involves letting go, and it involves the risk that in your looseness, in your un-self-conscious spontaneity, you may say or do something strange, something that someone could shame you for. Therein lies the risk, and therein lies our poetry."
- Matthew Burgess ("Serious Play: Odes to the Everyday," Poetry Foundation)
"A master in the art of living draws no sharp distinction between his work and his play; his labor and his leisure; his mind and his body; his education and his recreation. He hardly knows which is which. He simply pursues his vision of excellence through whatever he is doing, and leaves others to determine whether he is working or playing. To himself, he always appears to be doing both."
- L.P. Jacks (Education Through Recreation)
"A child who does not play is not a child, but the man who does not play has lost forever the child who lived within him and who he will miss terribly." - Pablo Neruda (I Confess I Have Lived)
"So, like a forgotten fire, a childhood can always flare up again within us." - Gaston Bachelard (The Poetics of Reverie)
"I believe that half the trouble in the world comes from people asking 'What have I achieved?' rather than 'What have I enjoyed?' I've been writing about a subject I love as long as I can remember -- horses and the people associated with them, anyplace, anywhere, anytime. I couldn't be happier knowing that young people are reading my books. But even more important to me is that I've enjoyed so much the writing of them." - Walter Farley (author of The Black Stallion)
"We don’t stop playing because we grow old; we grow old because we stop playing.” - Karl Groos (The Play of Animals)
Photographs above: Howard, Victoria, Tilly and I on a dog-friendly beach near Paignton, south Devon, last week.
The L.P. Jacks quote above is often misattributed to François Auguste René Chateaubriand, and the Karl Goos quote to George Bernard Shaw.