I fly because it releases my mind from the tyranny of petty things.
~Antoine de Saint-Exupery
The air up there in the clouds is very pure and fine, bracing and delicious. And why shouldn't it be? - it is the same the angels breathe.
~Mark Twain, "Roughing It"
You haven't seen a tree until you've seen its shadow from the sky.
How strange is this combination of proximity and separation. That ground - seconds away - thousands of miles away.
~Charles A. Lindbergh
There is an art, or rather a knack to flying. The knack lies in learning how to throw yourself at the ground and miss.
~Douglas Adams, Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy
There are only two emotions in a plane: boredom and terror.
Both optimists and pessimists contribute to our society. The optimist invents the airplane and the pessimist the parachute.
Flight is the only truly new sensation than men have achieved in modern history.
O! for a horse with wings!
~William Shakespeare, Cymbeline
The butterfly is a flying flower...
~Ponce Denis Écouchard Lebrun
More than anything else the sensation is one of perfect peace mingled with an excitement that strains every nerve to the utmost, if you can conceive of such a combination.
The modern airplane creates a new geographical dimension. A navigable ocean of air blankets the whole surface of the globe. There are no distant places any longer: the world is small and the world is one.
Once you have learned to fly your plane, it is far less fatiguing to fly than it is to drive a car. You don't have to watch every second for cats, dogs, children, lights, road signs, ladies with baby carriages and citizens who drive out in the middle of the block against the lights.... Nobody who has not been up in the sky on a glorious morning can possibly imagine the way a pilot feels in free heaven.
~William T. Piper
Lovers of air travel find it exhilarating to hang poised between the illusion of immortality and the fact of death.
~Alexander Chase, "Perspectives," 1966
Flying without feathers is not easy; my wings have no feathers.
~Titus Maccius Plautus
Within all of us is a varying amount of space lint and star dust, the residue from our creation. Most are too busy to notice it, and it is stronger in some than others. It is strongest in those of us who fly and is responsible for an unconscious, subtle desire to slip into some wings and try for the elusive boundaries of our origin.
~K.O. Eckland, "Footprints On Clouds"
He who would learn to fly one day must first learn to stand and walk and run and climb and dance; one cannot fly into flying.
The bluebird carries the sky on his back.
~Henry David Thoreau
If God had really intended men to fly, he'd make it easier to get to the airport.
The engine is the heart of an airplane, but the pilot is its soul.
Angels can fly because they carry no burdens.
~Quoted in The Angels' Little Instruction Book by Eileen Elias Freeman, 1994
Whenever we safely land in a plane, we promise God a little something.
~Mignon McLaughlin, The Neurotic's Notebook, 1960
Pilots are a rare kind of human. They leave the ordinary surface of the word, to purify their soul in the sky, and they come down to earth, only after receiving the communion of the infinite.
~Jose Maria Velasco Ibarra
Thank God men cannot fly, and lay waste the sky as well as the earth.
~Henry David Thoreau
The desire to reach for the sky runs deep in our human psyche.
Why fly? Simple. I'm not happy unless there's some room between me and the ground.
This is the first convention of the space age - where a candidate can promise the moon and mean it.
I never liked riding in helicopters because there's a fair probability that the bottom part will get going around as fast as the top part.
In the space age, man will be able to go around the world in two hours - one hour for flying and one hour to get to the airport.
When once you have tasted flight, you will forever walk the earth with your eyes turned skyward, for there you have been, and there you will always long to return.
~Leonardo Da Vinci (Thanks, Tommy)
The Wright Brothers created the single greatest cultural force since the invention of writing. The airplane became the first World Wide Web, bringing people, languages, ideas, and values together.
Given angel's wings, where might you fly?
In what sweet heaven might you find your love?
Unwilling to be bound, where might you move,
Lost between the wonder and the why?...
~Nicholas Gordon, poemsforfree.com
Bicycling is the nearest approximation I know to the flight of birds. The airplane simply carries a man on its back like an obedient Pegasus; it gives him no wings of his own.
~Louis J. Helle, Jr., Spring in Washington
When you think about flying, it's nuts really. Here you are at about 40,000 feet, screaming along at 700 miles an hour and you're sitting there drinking Diet Pepsi and eating peanuts. It just doesn't make any sense.
I feel about airplanes the way I feel about diets. It seems to me that they are wonderful things for other people to go on.
~Jean Kerr, "Mirror, Mirror, on the Wall," The Snake Has All the Lines, 1958
I pick the prettiest part of the sky and I melt into the wing and then into the air, till I'm just soul on a sunbeam.
I think progress began to retrogress when Wilbur and Orville started tinkering around in Dayton and at Kitty Hawk, because I believe that two Wrights made a wrong.
~Ogden Nash, "Come, Come, Kerouac! My Generation is Beater Than Yours," New Yorker, 1959 April 4
If black boxes survive air crashes, why don't they make the whole plane out of that stuff?
Those who gave away their wings are sad not to see them fly.
~Antonio Porchia, Voces, 1943, translated from Spanish by W.S. Merwin
I think it is a pity to lose the romantic side of flying and simply to accept it as a common means of transport....
My soul is in the sky.
~William Shakespeare, A Midsummer Night's Dream
I always thought that my airplane conveyed a silent sermon. To the earthbound observer, its silhouette was the shape of the cross on which Jesus was crucified.
The reason angels can fly is because they take themselves lightly.
~G.K. Chesterton, "Orthodoxy"
Now I know why they tell you to put your head between your knees on crash landings. You think you're going to kiss your ass good-bye.
There is just one thing I can promise you about the outer-space program - your tax-dollar will go further.
~Werner von Braun
Aerodynamically the bumblebee shouldn't be able to fly, but the bumblebee doesn't know that so it goes on flying anyway.
~Mary Kay Ash
Spread your wings and let the fairy in you fly!
If happy little bluebirds fly beyond the rainbow, why oh why can't I?
The desire to fly is an idea handed down to us by our ancestors who, in their grueling travels across trackless lands in prehistoric times, looked enviously on the birds soaring freely through space, at full speed, above all obstacles, on the infinite highway of the air.