It's only after we've lost everything that we're free to do anything.
"Was it worth it, two weeks in the hole?"
"Easiest time I ever did."
"Bullshit! There's no such thing as easy time in the hole. A week in the hole is like a year."
"I had Mr. Mozart to keep me company."
"So, they let you tote that record player down there, huh?"
"It was in here. And in here. That's the beauty of music. They can't get that from you. Haven't you ever felt that way about music?"
"Well, I played a mean harmonica, as a younger man. Lost interest in it, though. Didn't make much sense in here."
"Here's where it makes the most sense. You need it, so you don't forget."
"Forget that there are places in the world that aren't made out of stone...that there's something...inside that they can't get to...that they can't touch. It's yours."
"What are you talking about?"
It was a quiet morning, the town covered over with darkness and at ease in bed.
Summer gathered in the weather, the wind had the proper touch, the breathing of the world was long and warm and slow. You had only to rise, lean from your window, and know that this indeed was the first real time of freedom and living, this was the first morning of summer.
Until you’ve lost your reputation, you never realize what a burden it was or what freedom really is.
Don't believe what your eyes are telling you. All they show is limitation. Look with your understanding, find out what you already know, and you'll see the way to fly.
We're free to go where we wish and to be what we are.
I have no idea to this day what those two Italian ladies were singing about. Truth is, I don't want to know. Some things are best left unsaid. I like to think it was something so beautiful... it can't be expressed in words and makes your heart ache because of it. I tell you, those voices soared... higher and farther than anybody in a gray place dares to dream. It was like a beautiful bird flapped into our drab cage and made those walls dissolve away. And for the briefest of moments every last man at Shawshank felt free.
What matters is not what is being done of us, but what we do ourselves with what has been done of us.
L’important n’est pas ce qu’on fait de nous mais ce que nous faisons nous-même de ce qu’on a fait de nous.
Saint Genet, Actor and Martyr (1952), p. 55