Cesare Pavese was a Piedmontese poet, novelist, literary critic and translator. In Italy, he is widely considered among the major authors of the 20th century.
I love his work. His most famous novel (The Moon and the Bonfire - 1950) is where these beautiful words come from:
There is a reason why I came back to this place—came back here instead of to Canelli, Barbaresco or Alba. It is almost certain that I was not born here; where I was born I don't know. There is not a house or a bit of ground or a handful of dust hereabouts of which I can say: "This was me before I was born" .
That you need a village, if only for the pleasure of leaving it. Your own village means that you're not alone, that you know there's something of you in the people and the plants and the soil, that even when you are not there it waits to welcome you.
Even then he had those piercing cat's eyes of his and when he had said something, finished up by saying: "If I'm wrong, put me right." And so I began to understand that you didn't speak for the sake of speaking to say that you had done this or that, what you had eaten or drunk, but to work out an idea, to find out what makes the world go round.