— John Lennon English singer and songwriter 1940 - 1980
"Julia" (1968); these lines were adapted from lines of Sand and Foam (1926) by Khalil Gibran: "When life does not find a singer to sing her heart she produces a philosopher to speak her mind."
„Then let not what I cannot have
My cheer of mind destroy.
Whilst thus I sing, I am a king,
Although a poor blind boy!“
— Colley Cibber British poet laureate 1671 - 1757
The Blind Boy (l. 17-20).
„I cannot say what loves have come and gone,
I only know that summer sang in me
A little while, that in me sings no more.“
— Edna St. Vincent Millay American poet 1892 - 1950
Context: Thus in the winter stands the lonely tree, Nor knows what birds have vanished one by one, Yet knows its boughs more silent than before: I cannot say what loves have come and gone, I only know that summer sang in me A little while, that in me sings no more. Sonnet XLIII: "What lips my lips have kissed, and where, and why" (1923), Collected Poems", 1931
„Why does everybody not sing a national anthem all together? The player who cannot sing a national anthem is not a Japanese representative.“
— Yoshirō Mori 86th Prime Minister of Japan 1937
As quoted in 森氏「どうして国歌歌わない」五輪壮行会で苦言 http://this.kiji.is/122300577584857095 (in Japanese) (3 July 2016),Kyodo news.
„So I broke into the palace, with a sponge and a rusty spanner
She said "eh, I know you and you cannot sing"
I said "that's nothing you should hear me play piano"“
— Morrissey English singer 1959
From the song "The Queen Is Dead (Take Me Back To Dear Old Blighty)"
„The child is not mine as the first was,
I cannot sing it to rest,
I cannot lift it up fatherly
And bliss it upon my breast;
Yet it lies in my little one's cradle
And sits in my little one's chair,
And the light of the heaven she's gone to
Transfigures its golden hair.“
— James Russell Lowell American poet, critic, editor, and diplomat 1819 - 1891
The Changeling http://seacoastnh.com/poems/changeling2.html, st. 7 (1879)
„I am a bird from mountains you don't know.
My throat feels itchy—so I start to chirp
when sings the morning wind among the leaves,
when dreams the moon at midnight in the blue.
Perched on a branch, the bird longs for its brook—
it will break into song and not know why.
Its ditties cannot make the fruits grow ripe;
its carols cannot help the flowers bloom.
It's profitless to sing, and yet the bird
will burst its throat and heart to sing its best.“
— Xuân Diệu Vietnamese poet 1916 - 1985
"Foreword to a book of poems"
— John Fletcher English Jacobean playwright 1579 - 1625
The Wild Goose Chase (c. 1621; published 1652), Act II. 2.
„Poetry, perhaps the finest of fine arts, certainly the shynest and most elusive?, poetry which must have listeners, which cannot sing into a void.“
— Harriet Monroe American poet and editor 1860 - 1936
'A Poets life, Seventy Years in changing world' Macmillan, New York 1938
„Singing cannot much avail, if from within the heart comes not the song; nor can the song come from the heart, unless there be there noble love, heartfelt.“
— Bernart de Ventadorn troubador 1125 - 1195
"Chantars no pot gaire valer", line 1; translation from Alan R. Press Anthology of Troubadour Lyric Poetry (1971) p. 67.
— Johann Wolfgang von Goethe German writer, artist, and politician 1749 - 1832
Bk. II, Ch. 11
— Bob Dylan American singer-songwriter, musician, author, and artist 1941
Liner notes https://bobdylan.com/albums/freewheelin-bob-dylan/, The Freewheelin' Bob Dylan (1963)
„I think an interpreter has to sing everything, to sing what wants to sing. It cannot be with that foolishness, that here in Brazil we face this thing that when one records a song, later no one can rerecord it. This is madness, absurd. Music doesn't have an owner, the music doesn´t belong to anyone.
- Comment on the excessive protectionism of composers in Brazil. Domingão do Faustão Program, Rede Globo, 2003“
— Simone Bittencourt de Oliveira Brazilian singer 1949