I love you, Minerva. I love that you believe in me no matter what. I love how you take whatever you see and distill it into your books. I love your clever mind and your generous heart and every inch of your beautiful body. I love you even when you give me heart failure, by risking your life before my very eyes." He smiled tenderly. "I only hope in time I can prove worthy of your love.
Now it seems to me that love of some kind is the only possible explanation of the extraordinary amount of suffering that there is in the world. I cannot conceive of any other explanation. I am convinced that there is no other, and that if the world has indeed, as I have said, been built of sorrow, it has been built by the hands of love, because in no other way could the soul of man, for whom the world was made, reach the full stature of its perfection. Pleasure for the beautiful body, but pain for the beautiful soul.
If one had to define one essential gift with which a dancer needs to be endowed, there might be a rush of answers. A beautiful body, grace of line, graciousness of spirit, joy in the work, ability to please, unswerving integrity, relentless ambition towards some abstract perfection. Certainly all these factors determine a dancer's character, and every element exists in some combination within the performing artist's presence.
If I were a painter, I would paint beautiful bodies - I would paint nipples, and I would paint Bibles. Am I going to say, 'I'm not going to paint this woman's neck because people will think I just want to lick on necks?' Please! That's not what art is about.
I guess my mom raised me right. She was very celebratory of her body. I never heard her once say, 'I feel fat.' Back when I was modeling, the first time I went to Italy I was having cappuccinos every day, and I gained 15 pounds. And I felt gorgeous! I would take my clothes off in front of the mirror and be like, Oh, I look like a woman. And I felt beautiful, and I never tried to lose it, 'cause I loved it.