85+ Best Dorothy Parker Quotes From The American Poet And Satirist

Rajnandini Roychoudhury
Dec 12, 2023 By Rajnandini Roychoudhury
Originally Published on Feb 24, 2021
Edited by Luca Demetriou
Quill pen and ink well
Age: 0-99
Read time: 12.0 Min

Dorothy Parker was a renowned American poet and satirist.

Her exquisite satires and wise sayings earned her huge fame. Dorothy Parker was extensively influenced by William Makepeace Thackeray, Sara Murphy and Robert Benchley.

She also tried her hand at screenplay writing which ultimately earned her two Academy nominations. Do give a look at this article and we are sure that you will find it interesting.

If you find our content interesting then do check out these Fran Lebowitz quotes and Susan Sontag quotes.

Best Quotes By Dorothy Parker

Poetry word cloud on a napkin

Listed below are some of the best quotes of Dorothy Parker.

1."The best way to keep children at home is to make the home atmosphere pleasant, and let the air out of the tires."

- Dorothy Parker.

2. "I don't know much about being a millionaire, but I'll bet I'd be darling at it."

- Dorothy Parker.

3. "That woman speaks eighteen languages, and can't say 'No' in any of them."

- Dorothy Parker.

4. "I require three things in a man: he must be handsome, ruthless, and stupid."

- Dorothy Parker.

5. "I hate writing, I love having written."

- Dorothy Parker.

6. "There's a hell of a distance between wise-cracking and wit. Wit has truth in it; wise-cracking is simply calisthenics with words."

- Dorothy Parker.

7. "Men seldom make passes at girls who wear glasses."

- Dorothy Parker.

8. "Constant use had not worn ragged the fabric of their friendship."

- Dorothy Parker.

9. "Take me or leave me; or, as is the usual order of things, both."

- Dorothy Parker.

10. "The two most beautiful words in the English language are 'cheque enclosed."

- Dorothy Parker.

11. "I'd like to have money. And I'd like to be a good writer. These two can come together, and I hope they will, but if that's too adorable, I'd rather have money."

- Dorothy Parker.

12. "Money cannot buy health, but I'd settle for a diamond-studded wheelchair."

- Dorothy Parker.

13. "Heterosexuality is not normal, it's just common."

- Dorothy Parker.

14. "If you want to know what God thinks of money, just look at the people he gave it to."

- Dorothy Parker.

15. "That would be a good thing for them to cut on my tombstone: Wherever she went, including here, it was against her better judgment."

- Dorothy Parker.

Dorothy Parker Poetry Quotes

Here are some of the coolest Dorothy Parker poems.

16. "And I'll forget the way of tears,

And rock, and stir my tea."

- Dorothy Parker, 'Afternoon'.

17. "I think, no matter where you be,

You'll hold me in your memory."

- Dorothy Parker, 'But Not Forgotten'.

18. "Star, that gives a gracious dole,

What am I to choose?

Oh, will it be a shriven soul,

Or little buckled shoes?"

- Dorothy Parker, 'Star Light, Star Bright'.

19. "And so must Beauty bow her imperfect head

Because a dream has joined the wistful dead!"

- Dorothy Parker, 'A Dream Lies Dead'.

20. "I think that I shall never know

Why I am thus, and I am so."

- Dorothy Parker, 'A Fairly Sad Tale'.

21. "Why is it no one ever sent me yet

One perfect limousine, do you suppose?

Ah no, it's always just my luck to get

One perfect rose."

- Dorothy Parker, 'One Perfect Rose'.

22. "You- you'd only a lilting song,

Only a melody, happy and high,

You were sudden and swift and strong-

Never a thought for another had I."

- Dorothy Parker, 'The Choice'.

23. "And you believe, so well I know my part,

That I am gay as morning, light as snow,

And all the straining things within my heart

You'll never know."

- Dorothy Parker, 'A Certain Lady'.

24. "I shudder at the thought of men.

I'm due to fall in love again."

- Dorothy Parker, 'Symptom Recital'.

25. "And if you do not like me so,

To hell, my love, with you!"

- Dorothy Parker, 'Indian Summer'.

26. "By the time you swear you're his,

And he vows his passion is,

Infinite, undying.

Lady make note of this -

One of you is lying."

- Dorothy Parker, 'Unfortunate Coincidence'.

27. "If I abstain from fun and such,

I'll probably amount to much,

But I shall stay the way I am,

Because I do not give a damn."

- Dorothy Parker, 'Observation'.

28. "Three be the things I shall never attain:

Envy, content, and sufficient champagne.

Three be the things I shall have till I die:

Laughter and hope and a sock in the eye."

- Dorothy Parker, 'Inventory'.

29. "Her mind lives tidily, apart

From cold and noise and pain,

And bolts the door against her heart,

Out wailing in the rain."

- Dorothy Parker, 'Interior'.

30. "Four be the things I am wiser to know:

Idleness, sorrow, a friend, and a foe.

Four be the things I'd been better without:

Love, curiosity, freckles, and doubt."

- Dorothy Parker, 'Inventory'.

Humorous And Funny Dorothy Parker Quotes

Listed below are some hilarious Dorothy Parker quotes.

31. "The writer's way is rough and lonely, and who would choose it while there are vacancies in more gracious professions, such as, say, cleaning out ferryboats?"

- Dorothy Parker.

32. "When your bank account is so overdrawn that it is positively photographic, steps must be taken."

- Dorothy Parker.

33. "Summer makes me drowsy. Autumn makes me sing. Winter's pretty lousy, but I hate Spring."

- Dorothy Parker.

34. "Gertrude Stein did us the most harm when she said, 'You're all a lost generation.' That got around to certain people and we all said, 'Whee! We're lost."

- Dorothy Parker.

35. "I like to think of my shining tombstone. It gives me, as you might say, something to live for."

- Dorothy Parker.

36. "This must be a gift book. That is to say a book, which you wouldn't take on any other terms."

- Dorothy Parker.

37. "Then if my friendships break and bend,

There's little need to cry

The while I know that every foe

Is faithful till I die."

- Dorothy Parker, 'The Leal'.

38. "I wanted to be cute. That's the terrible thing. I should have had more sense."

- Dorothy Parker.

39. "Of course I talk to myself. I like a good speaker, and I appreciate an intelligent audience."

- Dorothy Parker.

40. "This wasn't just plain terrible, this was fancy terrible. This was terrible with raisins in it."

- Dorothy Parker.

41. "Excuse me, everybody, I have to go to the bathroom. I really have to telephone, but I'm too embarrassed to say so."

- Dorothy Parker.

Love Quotes From Dorothy Parker

Here you will find Dorothy Parker quotes about love.

42. "Oh, seek, my love, your newer way;

I'll not be left in sorrow."

- Dorothy Parker, 'Godspeed'.

43. "Into love and out again,

Thus I went, and thus I go."

- Dorothy Parker, 'Theory'.

44. "Lady, lady, should you meet

One who keeps assuring you

That he never was untrue,

Never loved another one…

Lady, lady, better run!"

- Dorothy Parker, 'Social Note'.

45. "For art is a form of catharsis,

And love is a permanent flop."

- Dorothy Parker, 'Coda'.

46. "Love is for unlucky folk,

Love is but a curse."

- Dorothy Parker, 'A Very Short Song'.

47. "Hell's afloat in lover's tears."

- Dorothy Parker.

48. "Drink and dance and laugh and lie,

Love, the reeling midnight through,

For tomorrow we shall die!

(But, alas, we never do.)

- Dorothy Parker, 'The Flaw In Paganism'.

49. "Oh, life is a glorious cycle of song,

A medley of extemporanea."

- Dorothy Parker, ' Comment'.

50. "Love is like quicksilver in the hand. Leave the fingers open and it stays. Clutch it and it darts away."

- Dorothy Parker.

51. "The sweeter the apple, the blacker the core:

Scratch a lover, and find a foe!"

- Dorothy Parker, 'Ballade Of A Great Weariness'.

52. "We're as Nature has made us -- hence

I loved them until they loved me."

- Dorothy Parker, 'Ballade At Thirty-Five'.

Iconic Dorothy Parker Quotes

Here are some iconic Dorothy Parker quotes along with Dorothy Parker quotes about life.

53. "A list of authors who have made themselves most beloved and therefore, most comfortable financially, shows that it is our national joy to mistake for the first-rate, the fecund rate."

- Dorothy Parker.

54. "I know this will come as a shock to you, Mr. Goldwyn, but in all history, which has held billions and billions of human beings, not a single one ever had a happy ending."

- Dorothy Parker.

55. "There is no such hour on the present clock as 6:30, New York time. Yet, as only New Yorkers know, if you can get through the twilight, you'll live through the night."

- Dorothy Parker.

56. "Travel, trouble, music, art,

A kiss, a frock, a rhyme-

I never said they feed my heart,

But still they pass my time."

- Dorothy Parker, 'Faute De Mieux'.

57. "Innocence is a desirable thing, a dainty thing, an appealing thing, in its place; but carried too far, it is merely ridiculous."

- Dorothy Parker.

58. "If you looked for things to make you feel hurt and wretched and unnecessary, you were certain to find them, more easily each time, so easily, soon, that you did not even realize you had gone out searching."

- Dorothy Parker.

59. "Some men break your heart in two,

Some men fawn and flatter,

Some men never look at you;

And that cleans up the matter."

- Dorothy Parker, 'Experience'.

60. "Most good women are hidden treasures who are only safe because nobody looks for them."

- Dorothy Parker.

61. "I had been fed, in my youth, a lot of old wives' tales about the way men would instantly forsake a beautiful woman to flock around a brilliant one. It is but fair to say that, after getting out in the world, I had never seen this happen."

- Dorothy Parker.

62. "The only dependable law of life - everything is always worse than you thought it was going to be."

- Dorothy Parker.

63. "Never throw mud: you can miss the target, but your hands will remain dirty."

- Dorothy Parker.

64. "The cleverest woman on earth is the biggest fool on earth with a man."

- Dorothy Parker.

Dorothy Parker Quotes From Her Books

Here are Dorothy Parker quotes from her books.

65. "I'm quite all right. I'm not even scared. You see, I've learned from looking around, there is something worse than loneliness--and that's the fear of it."

- Dorothy Parker, 'The Ladies of the Corridor'.

66. "If I could sit still, maybe I could read. Oh, all the books are about people who love each other, truly and sweetly. What do they want to write about that for? Don't they know it isn't true?"

- Dorothy Parker, 'A Telephone Call'.

67. "There's life for you. Spend the best years of your life studying penmanship and rhetoric and syntax and Beowulf and George Eliot, and then somebody steals your pencil."

- Dorothy Parker, 'The Portable Dorothy Parker'.

68. "It's not the tragedies that kill us; it's the messes."

- Dorothy Parker, 'Dorothy Parker in Her Own Words'.

69. "All right, God, send me to hell. You think You're frightening me with Your hell, don't You? You think Your hell is worse than mine."

- Dorothy Parker, 'A Telephone Call'.

70. "They'd make of you another person.

They cannot let you go your gait;

They influence and educate."

- Dorothy Parker, 'The Portable Dorothy Parker'.

71. "I'll be the way I was when I first met him. Then maybe he'll like me again."

- Dorothy Parker, 'Collected Stories'.

72. "I'm never going to be famous. My name will never be writ large on the roster of Those Who Do Things. I don't do anything."

- Dorothy Parker, 'Here Lies'.

73. "You don't have to give me strength, God; I have it myself."

- Dorothy Parker, 'The Portable Dorothy Parker'.

74. "Sorrow is tranquility remembered in emotion."

- Dorothy Parker, 'Here Lies'.

75. "Bewildered is the fox who lives to find that grapes beyond reach can be really sour."

- Dorothy Parker, 'Constant Reader'.

Other Famous Dorothy Parker Quotes

Listed below are some of the cool Dorothy Parker quotes.

76. "When I was young and bold and strong, The right was right, the wrong was wrong."

- Dorothy Parker.

77. "If all the young ladies who attended the Yale promenade dance were laid end to end, no one would be the least surprised."

- Dorothy Parker.

78. "Honesty means nothing until you are tested under circumstances where you are sure you could get away with dishonesty."

- Dorothy Parker.

79. "Every year, back comes Spring, with nasty little birds yapping their fool heads off and the ground all mucked up with plants."

- Dorothy Parker.

80. "Time may be a great healer, but it's a lousy beautician."

- Dorothy Parker.

81. "I'm not a writer with a drinking problem, I'm a drinker with a writing problem."

- Dorothy Parker.

82. "Q: What's the difference between an enzyme and a hormone? A: You can't hear an enzyme."

- Dorothy Parker

83. "If you have any young friends who aspire to become writers, the second-greatest favor you can do them is to present them with copies of The Elements of Style. The first-greatest, of course, is to shoot them now, while they're happy."

- Dorothy Parker.

84. "Now I know the things I know, and I do the things I do; and if you do not like me so, to hell, my love, with you!"

- Dorothy Parker, 'Not So Deep As A Well'.

85. "I hate almost all rich people, but I think I’d be darling at it."

- Dorothy Parker, 'Dorothy Parker In Her Own Words'.

86. "Misfortune, and recited misfortune especially, can be prolonged to the point where it ceases to excite pity and arouses only irritation."

- Dorothy Parker.

87. "The Monte Carlo casino refused to admit me until I was properly dressed so I went and found my stockings, and then came back and lost my shirt."

- Dorothy Parker.

88. "Years are only garments, and you either wear them with style all your life, or else you go dowdy to the grave."

- Dorothy Parker.

Here at Kidadl, we have carefully created lots of interesting family-friendly quotes for everyone to enjoy! If you liked our suggestions for Dorothy Parker quotes then why not take a look at [Emily Dickenson quotes] or Betty Friedan quotes.

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Written by Rajnandini Roychoudhury

Bachelor of Arts specializing in English, Master of Arts specializing in English

Rajnandini Roychoudhury picture

Rajnandini RoychoudhuryBachelor of Arts specializing in English, Master of Arts specializing in English

With a Master of Arts in English, Rajnandini has pursued her passion for the arts and has become an experienced content writer. She has worked with companies such as Writer's Zone and has had her writing skills recognized by publications such as The Telegraph. Rajnandini is also trilingual and enjoys various hobbies such as music, movies, travel, philanthropy, writing her blog, and reading classic British literature. 

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