Bringing Europe Home

Quotes from the Masters: Fellini

I love to talk.  I really do.  I love to engage others in conversation and witty repartee.  I relish the active, educated, verbalized exchange of ideas and opinions.  I enjoy telling stories and making other people laugh.  But sometimes, I need to keep my mouth shut.  I need to curtail my own enthusiastic urge to jump in with my two cents’ worth, and I need to be quiet long enough to listen…really listen…to what someone else is saying.  I need to allow a tiny detail or a glorious vista to render me speechless.

Those are some thoughts that occurred to me when I came across this quote.

“If there were a little more silence, if we all kept quiet…maybe we could understand something.” Federico Fellini

This rooftop scene is from Lucca, Italy, and it impressed me at the time that the streets were sinking into silence as the sun was sinking below the hills.  I thought that the entire town had taken on its own quiet character, even though there was surely noise within the individual households.  But in that silence, as I watched the sun set across the tiled rooftops, I felt connected with that place and its people and–in a small way–with my own Italian heritage.

I am offering this quote as a challenge, and this will be a unique one.

Do you have a story or a lesson that was learned in silence? Do you have a photo or poem that inspired quiet reflection? You are welcome to create a post using this quote as your inspiration, and please share the link to your post here. I thank you for reading this post, and I thank those of you who choose to join the challenge.


Check out these interpretations of the quote:


    • Your post and photos are inspiring, as well. Great job!

  1. This post reminds me of the wonderful words of Blaise Pascal: “All men’s miseries derive from not being able to sit in a quiet room alone.” Silent, un-distracted reflection is so important and so gravely underestimated! (You have me quietly thinking about it at this very moment, Robin!) Thanks for this great post.

    • Thanks, Sugar! This is a very interesting quote that you’ve added. One thing I can do (and am really very good at!) is sit in a quiet room alone. So, I am encouraged. 🙂
      Thank you for your lovely comments.

  2. Thanks for the challenge, Robin. Who doesn’t like a little silence now and then!

    • Exactly! (I have I think five minutes of it right now…so, bye!)
      Thanks for joining in.

  3. When I read the quote I knew which folder to look in for a photo – here is my silence:

    • Your silence is beautifully expressed in words and photograph, Lynne. Thank you so much for sharing!

  4. I love this quote and its profound nature actually made me stop and think 🙂
    Thank you my friend!
    As far as a story goes, I once saw a homeless man give his, I assume daughter, his last chunk of bread in India. It makes a tear roll down my cheek even now.

    Choc Chip Uru

  5. Thanks again, Robin, for the great “Quotes from a Master”. I find myself very inspired by this challenge. I am so glad you have taken the time to offer this writing opportunity. Here is my interpretation of Fellini’s quote.

    • I’m so glad you are inspired by the challenges, Jamie! Your post is wonderful–thank you so much. 🙂

  6. Love Fellini! And I will actually incorporate this challenge as part of another challenge that I’m participating in starting this week — Let The Inspiration In (which was started by ‘A Taste of Morning’ blog). I’ve already got my post for this week –that’s going up in the next hour– but I will utilize the Fellini quote for next weeks!!

    • I’m so glad to hear all of that, Kenley! I’ll look into the “Inspiration” challenge, which sounds terrific, and I’ll look forward to your new posts.
      Thanks for visiting and for joining in. 🙂

  7. Gina

    Robin what a beautiful and thoughtful post!

  8. TBM

    Lovely photo and words. Time to put my thinking cap on and see if I can come up with something.

  9. What a lovely picture and sentiment. It already has me daydreaming about remembered peaceful times.

    • Yes, we have to delve far back into those memories before we hit “peaceful times.” 😉
      Really, I hope that some of them were fond, recent memories. Thank you, Elisa!

  10. Robin, I love the freaky-good energy that is connecting us across space and time, that sees us both writing to a theme… I just blogged about using your journal to explore that rich silence, in order to find our own answers.

    I am also a daily meditator, and find the space I entre in meditation is both healing and nourishing. It’s a silence that is full and life-giving.

    This is a gorgeous post, and as always, I love your images! They always speak to me.
    Bless xoxo

    • What kind words, Nicole! (kind as opposed to nice 😉 ) Thank you so much. I agree–I find quiet contemplation and contemplative prayer to be life-giving, and I have posted (here) my own reminder to myself to do more of it!
      In the meantime, three cheers for freaky-good-connecting energy! 🙂

  11. I did finally learn to talk less and listen more – doing both at the same time is impossible. it also reminds me of the companionable silence when you are comfortable enough with someone that neither need to fill the silence with words.

  12. Robin, I loved this post and the accompanying photograph!! There are a few precious moments before the sun begins gently creeping over the horizon, and when birds snug in their abodes, fill the morning with song.. I wrote this poem about such a morning…I hope you enjoy it!~Annie

    • Thank you, Annie! I love your comments about the precious moments of the dawn (they make me want to wake up early….almost 😉 ).

  13. GmaB

    “Hello darkness, my old friend- I’ve come to talk with you again- Because a vision softly creeping- Left its seeds while I was sleeping- And the vision that was planted in my brain- Still remains- Within the sound of silence” Paul Simon

    • I love those words and that song, GmaB! I was actually thinking about that song while I was writing this post. Thank you for sharing this. 🙂

    • A favourite song of mine. 🙂

      • One of my favorites, too!
        Thanks again, GmaB, for reminding us of the wonderful poetry of Paul Simon.

  14. I am pleased and honored to nominate you for the Illuminating Blogger Award. Please visit to accept your award. Enjoy!! 🙂

    • You are so kind, Jamie. I am pleased an honored to accept that from you (and I hope to get that post written today!).
      Enjoy your day. 🙂

      • Take as much time as you need. I love your Quotes from the Masters. I will be posting mine soon. 🙂

        • Will do. And thank you.
          And Yay! I’ll be looking forward to your Grandmotherly Wisdom. 🙂

  15. I will think about (silence). I loved Lucca, when I was there.

    • You have such an eye for detail, and you catch so many tiny winged creatures in your photos–you must be a very patient and quiet person to achieve all of that!
      Yes, Lucca was wonderful. I’m so glad we went there.

  16. That is such a still and beautiful photo Robin, I feel I want to sit quietly when I look at it. I like doing a lot of that, sitting quietly, because it allows me to glaze over into a dwam (I think this might be a Scottish word, it means a sort of daydream) and drift off in my thoughts. I probably spend far too much time in a semi-doziing state, mind you, which no doubt contributed to my poor grades at school. I shouldn’t have been allowed to sit next to windows… A couple of things popped into my head when I thought what I might post so I’ll be doing that soon, thank you.

    • Thank you kindly, Lorna. I am not surprised that you often sit quietly and gaze (perhaps along with a cup of tea?)–although I would think that someone as bright and talented as you would have gotten high marks in school. You’re certainly getting high marks in the blogosphere! “Still waters run deep,” as they say (another quote!), and I believe that applies to you! 😉
      I’m so glad this quote inspired a few thoughts for a post.

  17. Great quote, Robin. I think that in the midst of chaos though, in a very crowded place 🙂

    • Sometimes, those chaotic places are the very ones that beg us retreat into ourselves, reflect, and refocus. 🙂

  18. I love this quote, which in itself has made me reflect… Lovely photo too, which fits perfectly.

    • Thank you, Cathy. And, I must say that every time I visit your lovely site, I am inspired to quiet reflection and appreication!

  19. What a great post! I never knew Felini said that! It’s so true! Great idea. I’m going to think on this and see if I can think of something.

    • I’m so glad you like the post, Arnel–thank you! I’d love to see your post on this theme. I’m sure you could present some fine words of wisdom, (maybe along with a few of your beautiful pictures of flowers 😉 ).

  20. Unfortunately I can’t think of a quote or scene that has inspired me regarding silence, but I do like the sentiment you’re writing about. I’m a talker too–I really have to remind myself to LISTEN and not interject, and to keep my brain from skipping ahead about 3 steps and just go with the flow of the conversation. And I have to remind myself to stay in the moment when it’s quiet so I don’t miss all those small moments—like the tiny details and glorious vistas you referred to.

    Lucca looks beautiful. I’m sure it would be much easier to sit and enjoy the silence in a place like that.

    • I love your comments, Weebles. I have a skipping brain as well, and my tongue trips over it far too often. It’s not pretty. I wrote this post as a reminder to myself, more than anything, but I did think there were others out there who could relate.
      Lucca is wonderful, and that sunset view from the belltower truly commanded silence.

  21. Bobby

    Say what he will, no amount of silence will ever allow me to understand the point of that massive fish-thing at the end of La Dolce Vita. Silly man.

    • Guess I’ll have to watch the movie to understand what you’re referring to, Bobby.
      And I’m sure that La Dolce Vita is on somebody’s Top-100-films-of-all-time list, anyway. 😉

  22. Your post is wonderful, Lorna! Thank you for joining in the challenge. 🙂


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