“Part of me suspects that I'm a loser,
and the other part of me thinks I'm God Almighty.”
"People like me are aware of their so-called genius
at ten, eight, nine."
"I was different, I was always different. Why didn't
anybody notice me?"
"In one way, I was always hip. I was hip in kindergarten.
I was different from the others. There was something wrong
with me, I thought, because I seemed to see things people
didn't see. I always saw things in a hallucinatory way."
"I'm not going to change the way I look
or the way I feel to conform to anything. I've always been
a freak. So I've been a freak all my life and I have to live
with that, you know. I'm one of those people."
"When I was about twelve, I used to think
I must be a genius, but nobody’s noticed . Either I’m
a genius or I’m mad, which is it? ‘No,’ I
said, ‘I can’t be mad because nobody’s
put me away; therefore I’m a genius.’ Genius
is a form of madness and we’re all that way. But I
used to be coy about it, like me guitar playing. But if there’s
such a thing as genius – I am one. And if there isn’t,
I don’t care."
"The only reason I am a star is because of
my repression. Nothing else would have driven me through
all that if I was 'normal'."
"I used to say to me auntie (Mimi Smith), ``You throw
my f*ckin' poetry out, and you'll regret it when I'm famous,
'' and she threw the bastard stuff out. I never forgave her
for not treating me like a f*ckin' genius or whatever I was,
when I was a child. It was obvious to me."
“If there is such a thing as a genius, I am one, and
if there isn’t, I don’t care. I didn’t
become something when the Beatles made it, or when you heard
about me. I’ve been like this all my life.”
"All kids draw and write poetry and everything, and some
of us last until we're about eighteen, but most drop off
at about twelve when some guy comes up and says, 'You're
no good.' That's all we get told all our lives. 'You haven't
got the ability. You're a cobbler.' It happened to all of
us, but if somebody had told me all my life, 'Yeah, you're
a great artist,' I would have been a more secure person."
“You don't need anybody to tell you who you are or
what you are. You are what you are!”
"Surrealism had a great effect on me because then I
realised that the imagery in my mind wasn't insanity. Surrealism
to me is reality."
"Rituals are important. Nowadays it's hip not to be
married. I'm not interested in being hip."
"I always was a rebel...but on the other hand, I wanted
to be loved and accepted...and not just be a loudmouth, lunatic,
poet, musician. But I cannot be what I am not."