But your reprisals are too severe!

26 November 2014

Cadmus: But your reprisals are too severe!

Dionysus: Yes, because I am a god, and you insulted me.

Cadmus: Gods should not resemble men in their anger!

Dionysus: Long ago Zeus my father approved these things.


The soldier’s greatest fear

25 November 2014

They carried the soldier’s greatest fear, which was the fear of blushing. Men killed, and died, because they were embarrassed not to. It was what had brought them to the war in the first place, nothing positive, no dreams of glory or honor, just to avoid the blush of dishonor. They died so as not to die of embarrassment.

Tim O’Brien, The Things They Carried

For him it was a dark passage

24 November 2014

For him it was a dark passage which led to nowhere, then to nowhere, then again to nowhere, once again to nowhere, always and forever to nowhere.

Ernest Hemingway

Sometimes I can even see Timmy skating with Linda

23 November 2014

Sometimes I can even see Timmy skating with Linda under the yellow floodlights. I’m young and happy. I’ll never die. I’m skimming across the surface of my own history, moving fast, riding the melt beneath the blades, doing loops and spins, and when I take a high leap into the dark and come down thirty years later, I realize it is as Tim trying to save Timmy’s life with a story.

Tim O’Brien, The Things They Carried

It makes you wonder

22 November 2014

It makes you wonder. All the brilliant things we might have done with our lives if only we suspected we knew how.

Ann Patchett, Bel Canto

He understood

21 November 2014

He understood that these were extraordinary times, and if their old life was ever restored to them, nothing would be the same.

Ann Patchett, Bel Canto

So Gen should have said something more

20 November 2014

So Gen should have said something more, and Carmen should have listened more, but instead she kissed him, because the important thing was to forget. That kiss was like a lake, deep and clear, and they swam into it forgetting.

Ann Patchett, Bel Canto

Jess drew the way some people drank whiskey

19 November 2014

Jess drew the way some people drank whiskey. The peace would start at the top of his muddled brain and seep down through his tired and tensed-up body. Lord, he loved to draw. Animals, mostly. Not regular animals like Miss Bessie and the chickens, but crazy animals with problems—for some reason he liked to put his beasts into impossible fixes…

He would like to show his drawings to his dad, but he didn’t dare. When he was in first grade, he told his father than he wanted to be an artist when he grew up. He’d thought he would be pleased. He wasn’t. ‘What are they teaching in that damn school?’ he had asked. ‘Bunch of old ladies turning my son into some kind of a—’ He had stopped on the word, but Jess had gotten the message. It was one you didn’t forget, even after four years.

Katherine Paterson

For you and me

18 November 2014

For you and me, life out here is nothing; but there may be others so constructed that they don’t fit into this life at all; and yet they are finer and better souls than either one of us. She is a better soul than any I’ve ever met. It’s only lately that I have begun to realize all she suffered since we came out here.

O.E. Rölvaag, Giants in the Earth: a saga of the prairie

She was seventy-five

17 November 2014

She was seventy-five and she was going to make some changes in her life.

Last line from The Corrections by Jonathan Franzen

Next Page »