"I know death is coming and I do not fear it. I was perfectly content before I was born and I think of death as the same state. I am grateful for the gifts of intelligence, love, wonder, and laughter. You can't say it wasn't interesting."-Roger Ebert
"Your intellect may be confused, but your emotions will never lie to you."-Roger Ebert
"You can only find out about yourself by learning about others."-Roger Ebert
"'Kindness' covers all of my political beliefs. No need to spell them out. I believe that if, at the end, according to our abilities, we have done something to make others a little happier, and something to make ourselves a little happier, that is about the best we can do. To make others less happy is a crime. To make ourselves unhappy is where all crime starts. We must try to contribute joy to the world. That is true no matter what our problems, our health, our circumstances. We must try. I didn’t always know this and am happy I lived long enough to find it out." -Roger Ebert
I had expected to write something else today, but in light of the news that the world has lost one of its great critics, there are no words. There are some people who you just assume will always be part of the landscape, will always be around to weigh in, will always be there to teach by example, about writing, about life, about grace, and when they leave this earth, one is unprepared for the void that is left.
He loved art. He loved ideas. He loved language. He was a passionate fan and a discerning viewer. He demonstrated the important role the critic plays in the creation of art (because if a tree falls in a forest, it isn't enough that people hear it, someone has to be there to comment on the quality of the sound it makes).
His leave of presence is now a permanent leave of absence. Though we have still all his reviews and writings, the world of thought and words is poorer.