Backyard Beauty Quotes

We've searched our database for all the quotes and captions related to Backyard Beauty. Here they are! All 74 of them:

I leaned forward. “How did I turn out? Are you proud of the monster you made?” Roland smiled. Hugh and Landon were right. It was like the sun had risen. Like digging a hole in your backyard and finding a glittering jewel in the dirt. “Child, my dangerous one, my beautiful one. You’ve claimed your city. You shouldn’t have been able to do that for another hundred years. I’m so proud that my pride could topple mountains. If you let me, I would show you to the world. I would show the world to you.” “So I could see it through your eyes?” “So you could see it through your own.
Ilona Andrews (Magic Breaks (Kate Daniels, #7))
There are many gods . . . gods of beauty and magic, gods of the garden, gods in our own backyards, but we go off to foreign countries to find new ones, we reach to the stars to find new ones--. . . . The god of the church is a jealous god; he cannot live in peace with other gods.
Rudolfo Anaya (Bless Me, Ultima)
To you, the beautiful human in you, who, like everybody else on this planet, is on an everyday struggle to love and be loved. I hope you find the love, happiness, and enlightenment you have been looking for, in you, in your backyard, in your wretched little neighborhood.
Merlin Franco (Saint Richard Parker)
We were lying on the blanket in the backyard of 37 Brooks, like we always did that summer. Lena was on her side, cheek resting on her hand, hair loose. Beautiful.
Lauren Oliver (Requiem (Delirium, #3))
fMr. Oswald places the telescope on the desk in front of us. "This," he says proudly, "Is a Broadhurst. It was the most powerful telescope for backyard veiwing in its day." Which was when?" Lizzy asks. The nineteen thirties," he replies. "Isn't it a beauty? On a clear night, you could see the whole entire solar system with this one." Unable to stop myself, I blurt out, "My very energetic mother just served us nine pizzas." Lizzy gawks at me like I have two heads. "He's lost it; he's finally lost it. I knew this day would come." Mr. Ozwald chuckles. "Jeremy has just given us a mnemonic device for remembering the order of the planets.
Wendy Mass (Jeremy Fink and the Meaning of Life)
The eastern sky was red as coals in a forge, lighting up the flats along the river. Dew had wet the million needles of the chaparral, and when the rim of the sun edged over the horizon the chaparral seemed to be spotted with diamonds. A bush in the backyard was filled with little rainbows as the sun touched the dew. It was tribute enough to sunup that it could make even chaparral bushes look beautiful, Augustus thought, and he watched the process happily, knowing it would only last a few minutes. The sun spread reddish-gold light through the shining bushes, among which a few goats wandered, bleating. Even when the sun rose above the low bluffs to the south, a layer of light lingered for a bit at the level of the chaparral, as if independent of its source. The the sun lifted clear, like an immense coin. The dew quickly died, and the light that filled the bushes like red dirt dispersed, leaving clear, slightly bluish air. It was good reading light by then, so Augustus applied himself for a few minutes to the Prophets. He was not overly religious, but he did consider himself a fair prophet and liked to study the styles of his predecessors. They were mostly too long-winded, in his view, and he made no effort to read them verse for verse—he just had a look here and there, while the biscuits were browning.
Larry McMurtry (Lonesome Dove (Lonesome Dove, #1))
But we’d have each other. And that’s enough for me.” She was crying now, the tears streaking down her face and carrying her mascara with them. I put my arms around her and wiped her cheek with my thumb. “I love you so much, sweetheart. So, so much. And it’s in part because of things like that. You’re an idealist and a romantic, and you have a beautiful soul. And I wish the world was ready to be the way you see it. I wish that the rest of the people on earth with us were capable of living up to your expectations. But they aren’t. The world is ugly, and no one wants to give anyone the benefit of the doubt about anything. When we lose our work and our reputations, when we lose our friends and, eventually, what money we have, we will be destitute. I’ve lived that life before. And I cannot let it happen to you. I will do whatever I can to prevent you from living that way. Do you hear me? I love you too much to let you live only for me.” She heaved into my body, her tears growing inside her. For a moment, I thought she might flood the backyard. “I love you,” she said. “I love you, too,” I whispered into her ear. “I love you more than anything else in the entire world.” “It’s not wrong,” Celia said. “It shouldn’t be wrong, to love you. How can it be wrong?” “It’s not wrong, sweetheart. It’s not,” I said. “They’re wrong.
Taylor Jenkins Reid (The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo)
We were on the patio, Tristan grilling us burgers, as we watched the kids playing in the their park of a backyard. … I pointed a Nikolaj, huddled together with Imogen. “No fucking way,” I told Tristan. “That right there is not happening.” He curled his lip at me, waving a hand at Cleo and Duncan. They were holding hands. They were only six, but that wasn’t the point. “What about that right there? What the ever-loving fuck is up with that? I’ll tell you right now I won’t stand for it.
R.K. Lilley (Mr. Beautiful (Up in the Air, #4))
into the most joyful places I could imagine. It sounds beautiful, adventurous, even romantic in ways, right? It is beautiful. And the crazy thing is, it is so simple. Don’t misunderstand; it is not easy. But it is simple in that each and every one of us was ultimately created to do the same thing. It will not look the same. It may take place in a foreign land or it may take place in your backyard, but I believe that we were each created to change the world for someone. To serve someone. To love someone the way Christ first loved us, to spread
Katie Davis (Kisses from Katie: A Story of Relentless Love and Redemption)
You know that's not true. We have something, Helena. In another life, it would have been a beautiful something." That hurts. God, does it. I've seen that life. He doesn't even know what he's talking about. In his mind, I'm just some possibility that could have been, but in my mind, he's the only possibility. I step close to him, close enough to see the stubble on his cheeks. I reach up to touch it, and it scrapes against the tender side of my hand. Kit closes his eyes. "There's a house uptown on Washington ; we live there together in that life," I say softly. "Everything is green, green, green in our backyard. We have two children, a boy and a girl. She looks like you," I say. "But she acts like me." I carees his cheek because I know it's the last time I'm going to get to do it. Kit's eyes are open and storming. I run my teeth across my bottom lip before I continue. "In the summer, we make love outside, against the big wooden table that still holds our dinner dishes. And we talk about all the places we want to make love." I lick the tears from my lip where they are pooling. Running in a straight line down my cheeks, a leaky faucet. "And we're so happy, Kit. It's like a dream every day." I reach up on my tiptoes and kiss him softly on the lips, letting him taste my tears. He's staring at me so hard I want to crack. "But, it's just a dream, isn't it?
Tarryn Fisher (F*ck Love)
Everyday I rewrite her name across my ribcage so that those who wish to break my heart will know who to answer to later She has no idea that I’ve taught my tongue to make pennies, and every time our mouths are to meet I will slip coins to the back of her throat and make wishes I wish that someday my head on her belly might be like home like doubt to doubt resuscitation because time is supposed to mean more than skin She doesn’t know that I have taught my arms to close around her clocks so they can withstand the fallout from her Autumn She is so explosive, volcanoes watch her and learn terrorists want to strap her to their chests because she is a cause worth dying for Maybe someday time will teach me to pick up her pieces put her back together and remind her to click her heels but she doesn’t need a wizard to tell her that I was here all along Lady let us catch the next tornado home let us plant cantaloupe trees in our backyard then maybe together we will realize that we don’t like cantaloupe and they don’t grow on trees we can laugh about it then we can plant things we’ve never heard of I’ve never heard of a woman who can make flawed look so beautiful the way you do The word smitten is to how I feel about you what a kiss is to romance so maybe my lips to yours could be the penance to this confession because I am the only one preaching your defunct religion sitting alone at your altar, praising you out of faith I cannot do this hard-knock life alone You are all the softness a rock dreams of being the mistakes the rain makes at picnics when Mother Nature bears witness in much better places So yes I will gladly take on your ocean just to swim beneath you so I can kiss the bends of your knees in appreciation for the work they do keeping your head above water
Mike McGee
To begin with, it was important for women to keep up their “curb appeal,” to “look and smell delicious,” to be “feminine, soft, and touchable,” not “dumpy, stringy, or exhausted”—at least if they wanted husbands to come home to them. But that was just the beginning. To keep a husband’s interest, Morgan was a strong believer in the power of costumes in the bedroom (or kitchen, living room, or backyard hammock), so that when a husband opened the front door each night it was like “opening a surprise package.” One day a “smoldering sexpot,” another “an all-American fresh beauty,” a pixie, a pirate, “a cow-girl or a show girl.” (Contrary to popular belief, Morgan never recommended that women clothe themselves in nothing but Saran Wrap. She wasn’t sure where that rumor got its start, though she conceded it was “a great idea.”) 3
Kristin Kobes Du Mez (Jesus and John Wayne: How White Evangelicals Corrupted a Faith and Fractured a Nation)
Eyes Fastened With Pins" How much death works, No one knows what a long Day he puts in. The little Wife always alone Ironing death's laundry. The beautiful daughters Setting death's supper table. The neighbors playing Pinochle in the backyard Or just sitting on the steps Drinking beer. Death, Meanwhile, in a strange Part of town looking for Someone with a bad cough, But the address somehow wrong, Even death can't figure it out Among all the locked doors... And the rain beginning to fall. Long windy night ahead. Death with not even a newspaper To cover his head, not even A dime to call the one pining away, Undressing slowly, sleepily, And stretching naked On death's side of the bed.
Charles Simic
over her head, trying to get some air on her neck. The sun was setting, but it had been an unusually warm September day. “You never go in the backyard.
Ann Napolitano (Hello Beautiful)
I’m not trying to hide from the truth but to balance it, to remind myself that there are other truths, too. I need to remember that the earth, fragile as it is, remains heartbreakingly beautiful. I need to give my attention to a realm that is indifferent to fretful human mutterings and naked human anger, a world unaware of the hatred and distrust taking over the news.
Margaret Renkl (The Comfort of Crows: A Backyard Year)
even the most dependable of men will stumble every now and then There are some people who insist that every time one door closes, another door opens, but this isn't always the case. There are doors that are meant to stay closed, ones that lead to rooms filled with serpents, rooms of regret, rooms that will lbind you if you dare to raise your eye to the keyhole in all innocence, simply to see what's inside Silence doesn't frighten us. We can just look at each other and recognize that there is pain in this world, even on beautiful nights when twilight settles in our backyards , sifting through the grass and the hedges you can't change what's means to be I had found if you didn't expect much, you weren't disappointed as much I'd simply have to live with the doubt hanging over me You could tell she didn't want to, she was trying with all her might to hold it back, but sometimes it's impossible to do that. I know from personal experience. You have to turn yourself cold as ice in order to stop yourself, and then if anything falls from your eyes it will only be blue ice crystals, hard and unbreakable as stone people who have faith were ao lucky, you didn't want to ruin anything for them. you didn't want to plant doubt where there was none. you had to treat such individuals tenderly and hope that some of whatever they were feeling rubs off on you everything is stupid when you really think about it. people get up everyday and they act like whatever they do is so important , but they're all just going to die in the end, so none of it matters.
Alice Hoffman (Blue Diary)
But ‘though we travel the world over to find the beautiful, we must carry it with us or we find it not.’ ” “Can you just say what you mean, Mother?” “Just remember to appreciate your own backyard.
Martha Hall Kelly (Lost Roses (Lilac Girls, #2))
I’m crying all the time now. I cried all over the street when I left the Seattle Wobbly Hall. I cried listening to Bach. I cried looking at the happy flowers in my backyard, I cried at the sadness of the middle aged trees. Happiness exists I feel it. I cried for my soul, I cried for the world’s soul. The world has a beautiful soul. God appearing to be seen and cried over. Overflowing heart of Paterson.
Allen Ginsberg
MAY IN MINNEAPOLIS IS LILAC TIME. AS IF TO COMPENSATE for the punitive winter, the city explodes with flowers overnight—making it, if only for a week or two, one of the most beautiful places on earth. First there are sunny starbursts of forsythia; then the cherry and dogwood trees burst into life, showering petals everywhere, pink and cream, drifting thick as snow on the sidewalks. But it is the lilacs that truly herald the coming of spring: lavender and white and blue and sometimes a purple deep as grapes, they bloom in the alleys and over backyard fences and in graveyards. Beauty is everywhere, including the most unexpected places. There is no respite from it.
Jenna Blum (Those Who Save Us)
There was a small spiky garden at their feet, and Charlie studied it. 'Doesn't hold a candle to your mother's,' he's said. 'How would you know?...You never go in the backyard.' He gave a small smile. 'I presume her greatness.
Ann Napolitano (Hello Beautiful)
Courage is a fleeting commodity and can be crushed effortlessly by a single fond memory of home. A backyard barbecue, a fragmented flashback to a moonlit dance with a beautiful girl--those are psychological bullets in combat. One glimpse of what has been makes a soldier yearn for what can be again. That yearning can be as caustic as acid. It burns away the resolve you need to get the job done. One stray thought can paralyze just as effectively as a bullet in the spine.
Sean Parnell (Outlaw Platoon: Heroes, Renegades, Infidels, and the Brotherhood of War in Afghanistan)
Life is wonderful and strange...and it’s also absolutely mundane and tiresome. It’s hilarious and it’s deadening. It’s a big, screwed-up morass of beauty and change and fear and all our lives we oscillate between awe and tedium. I think stories are the place to explore that inherent weirdness; that movement from the fantastic to the prosaic that is life.... What interests me—and interests me totally—is how we as living human beings can balance the brief, warm, intensely complicated fingersnap of our lives against the colossal, indifferent, and desolate scales of the universe. Earth is four-and-a-half billion years old. Rocks in your backyard are moving if you could only stand still enough to watch. You get hernias because, eons ago, you used to be a fish. So how in the world are we supposed to measure our lives—which involve things like opening birthday cards, stepping on our kids’ LEGOs, and buying toilet paper at Safeway—against the absolutely incomprehensible vastness of the universe? How? We stare into the fire. We turn to friends, bartenders, lovers, priests, drug-dealers, painters, writers. Isn’t that why we seek each other out, why people go to churches and temples, why we read books? So that we can find out if life occasionally sets other people trembling, too?
Anthony Doerr
When you look through a window you gasp at the beautiful tree in the backyard or the magical sunrise coming over the horizon, No one looks at a window and is taken away by the complexity of the transparency of millions of atoms joined together to form, from our perception of a crystal clear yet structural opening to the exterior, the same is with life, if you spend your whole life being a medium to enable others then you will be nothing but a sheet of glass, overused, underappreciated, and fragile to opportunity
Addison Killebrew
There was once a town in the heart of America where all life seemed to live in harmony with its surroundings. The town lay in the midst of a checkerboard of prosperous farms, with fields of grain and hillsides of orchards where, in spring, white clouds of bloom drifted above the green fields. In autumn, oak and maple and birch set up a blaze of color that flamed and flickered across a backdrop of pines. Then foxes barked in the hills and deer silently crossed the fields, half hidden in the mists of the fall mornings. Along the roads, laurel, viburnum, and alder, great ferns and wildflowers delighted the traveler's eye through much of the year. Even in winter the roadsides were places of beauty, where countless birds came to feed on the berries and on the seed heads of the dried weeds rising above the snow. The countryside was, in fact, famous for the abundance and variety of its bird life, and when the flood of migrants was pouring through in spring and fall people traveled from great distances to observe them. Others came to fish the streams, which flowed clear and cold out of the hills and contained shady pools where trout lay. So it had been from the days many years ago when the first settlers raised their homes, sank their wells, and built their barns. Then a strange blight crept over the area and everything began to change. Some evil spell had settled on the community: mysterious maladies swept the flocks of chickens, the cattle, and sheep sickened and died. Everywhere was a shadow of death. The farmers spoke of much illness among their families. In the town the doctors had become more and more puzzled by new kinds of sickness appearing among their patients. There had been sudden and unexplained deaths, not only among adults but even among children whoe would be stricken suddently while at play and die within a few hours. There was a strange stillness. The birds, for example--where had they gone? Many people spoke of them, puzzled and disturbed. The feeding stations in the backyards were deserted. The few birds seen anywhere were moribund; they trembled violently and could not fly. It was a spring without voices. On the mornings that had once throbbed with the dawn chorus of robins, catbirds, doves, jays, wrens, and scores of other bird voices there was no sound; only silence lay over the fields and woods and marsh. On the farms the hens brooded, but no chicks hatched. The farmers complained that they were unable to raise any pigs--the litters were small and the young survived only a few days. The apple trees were coming into bloom but no bees droned among the blossoms, so there was no pollination and there would be no fruit. The roadsides, once so attractive, were now lined with browned and withered vegetation as though swept by fire. These, too, were silent, deserted by all living things. Even the streams were not lifeless. Anglers no longer visited them, for all the fish had died. In the gutters under the eaves and between the shingles of the roofs, a white granular powder still showed a few patches; some weeks before it had fallen like snow upon the roofs and the lawns, the fields and streams. No witchcraft, no enemy action had silenced the rebirth of life in this stricken world. The people had done it to themselves.
Rachel Carson
Beautiful,” she said. I turned the page, and she smiled. It was a picture of the day when we built the human pyramid in my backyard, and I was at the top. The caption read: One day, all these Mexicans built a pyramid to the Sun. “You were my pyramid,” she whispered. “All of you.
Benjamin Alire Sáenz (The Inexplicable Logic of My Life)
Dear New Orleans, What a big, beautiful mess you are. A giant flashing yellow light—proceed with caution, but proceed. Not overly ambitious, you have a strong identity, and don’t look outside yourself for intrigue, evolution, or monikers of progress. Proud of who you are, you know your flavor, it’s your very own, and if people want to come taste it, you welcome them without solicitation. Your hours trickle by, Tuesdays and Saturdays more similar than anywhere else. Your seasons slide into one another. You’re the Big Easy…home of the shortest hangover on the planet, where a libation greets you on a Monday morning with the same smile as it did on Saturday night. Home of the front porch, not the back. This engineering feat provides so much of your sense of community and fellowship as you relax facing the street and your neighbors across it. Rather than retreating into the seclusion of the backyard, you engage with the goings-on of the world around you, on your front porch. Private properties hospitably trespass on each other and lend across borders where a 9:00 A.M. alarm clock is church bells, sirens, and a slow-moving eight-buck-an-hour carpenter nailing a windowpane two doors down. You don’t sweat details or misdemeanors, and since everybody’s getting away with something anyway, the rest just wanna be on the winning side. And if you can swing the swindle, good for you, because you love to gamble and rules are made to be broken, so don’t preach about them, abide. Peddlin worship and litigation, where else do the dead rest eye to eye with the livin? You’re a right-brain city. Don’t show up wearing your morals on your sleeve ’less you wanna get your arm burned. The humidity suppresses most reason so if you’re crossing a one-way street, it’s best to look both ways. Mother Nature rules, the natural law capital “Q” Queen reigns supreme, a science to the animals, an overbearing and inconsiderate bitch to us bipeds. But you forgive her, and quickly, cus you know any disdain with her wrath will reap more: bad luck, voodoo, karma. So you roll with it, meander rather, slowly forward, takin it all in stride, never sweating the details. Your art is in your overgrowth. Mother Nature wears the crown around here, her royalty rules, and unlike in England, she has both influence and power. You don’t use vacuum cleaners, no, you use brooms and rakes to manicure. Where it falls is where it lays, the swerve around the pothole, the duck beneath the branch, the poverty and the murder rate, all of it, just how it is and how it turned out. Like a gumbo, your medley’s in the mix. —June 7, 2013, New Orleans, La.
Matthew McConaughey (Greenlights)
I am an evolutionist. I believe my great backyard Sphexes have evolved like other creatures. But watching them in the October light as one circles my head in curiosity, I can only repeat my dictum softly: in the world there is nothing to explain the world. Nothing to explain the necessity of life, nothing to explain the hunger of the elements to become life, nothing to explain why the stolid realm of rock and soil and mineral should diversify itself into beauty, terror, and uncertainty. To bring organic novelty into existence, to create pain, injustice, joy, demands more than we can discern in the nature that we analyze so completely. Worship, then, like the Maya, the unknown zero, the procession of the time-bearing gods. The equation that can explain why a mere Sphex wasp contains in its minute head the ganglionic centers of its prey has still to be written. In the world there is nothing below a certain depth that is truly explanatory. It is as if matter dreamed and muttered in its sleep. But why, and for what reason it dreams, there is no evidence.
Loren Eiseley (All the Strange Hours: The Excavation of a Life)
Contentment is not something I’ve known much in my life and not something I ever really knew I wanted. This, too, is the body’s grace—a gift of physiology, right there alongside my fading hair and skin. At younger ages, our brains are tuned to learn by novelty. At this stage in life, they incline to greater satisfaction in what is routine. Slowing down is accompanied by space for noticing. I am embodied with an awareness that eluded me when my skin was so much more glowy. I become attentive to beauty in ordinary, everyday aspects of my life. There is nothing more delicious than my first cup of tea in the morning; no experience more pleasurable than when my son, now much taller than me, wraps me in a hug; no view I find more breathtaking, over and over again, than the white pine that stands day in and day out behind my backyard.
Krista Tippett (Becoming Wise: An Inquiry into the Mystery and Art of Living)
One day in the spring of 1894 or so, Amanda Cobb looked out her kitchen window and saw Tyrus and a bunch of Negro boys merrily hauling a cart laden with scrap metal, broken furniture, and other things they’d found in backyards and vacant lots around town. They were headed toward the junkyard to try to make a few dollars, and Mrs. Cobb knew for what. “He was always thinking up ways of earning money to buy baseball supplies,” she would tell a writer for the Springfield (Massachusetts) Sunday Union and Republican in 1928. “He was always playing when he was a child. In fact, we had a hard time getting him to go to school. I remember that the first money he earned he spent for a mitt. He couldn’t have been more than six years old when a neighbor asked him to take his cow to the pasture and gave Ty some change for doing it. Ty didn’t buy candy or ice cream. He knew what he wanted, and he got it—a baseball glove.
Charles Leerhsen (Ty Cobb: A Terrible Beauty)
And I sat there at the patio, while the whole of universe, was getting engulfed, in the whitest whiteness of snow. Down, near my rough paw, is soft snow, mannering a fidgeting embryo. I monitored the snow that plunged, on the soil of my backyard, and realized it melting fast. Was that the temperature or, my eyes on it overcast? While I think of this melted exalt, I am obliged to ask, What ought happens to the thoughts? Where do they get tossed? When they are forgot? Scorched? Scoffed? Deformed? Unadorned?
Jasleen Kaur Gumber
A great, spreading beech tree sheltered the entire backyard. Its beautiful, perfectly symmetrical canopy stretched from one fence line to the other, so dense that it tinted even the hottest summer day a lush green. Only the heaviest rain could penetrate the leaves. Blue had a satchelful of memories of standing by the massive, smooth trunk in the rain, hearing it hiss and tap and scatter across the canopy without ever reaching the ground. Standing under the beech tree, it felt like she was the beech, like the rain rolled off her leaves and off the bark, smooth as skin against her own. With
Maggie Stiefvater (The Raven Boys (The Raven Cycle, #1))
Megan Meade’s Guide to the McGowan Boys Entry One Observation #1: When they’re beautiful, they know they’re beautiful. Like the second-to-oldest one, Evan. He’s a senior. He is perfection personified. And he knows it. You can tell because he just sort of smiles knowingly when you gape at him. Not that I’ve been gaping at him. Not at all. Anyway, too soon yet to tell if it negatively affects his behavior. (Like Mike Blukowsi and his Astrodome-sized ego problem.) Observation #2: They like skin. Especially skin they think they’re not necessarily supposed to be seeing. Like the space between your belly tee and your waistband. Observation #3: They have no problem bringing up events that would mortify me into shamed silence if the roles were reversed. Like Evan totally brought up the wiffleball bat incident, when if that had happened to me, I’d be wishing on every one of my birthday cakes for everyone to forget it. Observation #4: They gossip. Can you believe it? I overheard Finn and Doug in the backyard talking about some girl named Dawn who blew off some guy named Simon for some other guy named Rick for like TWENTY MINUTES! They sounded like those old mole-hair ladies at Sal’s Milkshakes. ‘Member the ones who lectured us for a whole hour that day about how young women shouldn’t wear shorts? Wait, okay, I got sidetracked. Observation #5: The older ones are so cute with the younger ones. They were playing ultimate Frisbee when I first got here and Evan totally let Caleb and Ian tackle him. It was soooooo cute. **sigh.** Observation #6: They’re cliquey. I mean, eye-rolling, secret-handshake, don’t-talk-to-us-unless-you’ve-got-an-X-and-a-Y cliquey. Very schooled in the art of the freeze-out. Observation #7: They have no sense of personal space. I need a lock on my door. STAT. Observation #8: Boys are icky. Do not even get me started on the state of the bathroom. I’m thinking of calling in a haz-mat team. Seriously. Observation #9: They have really freaky things going on down there. Yeah, I don’t think I’m ready to elaborate on that one yet. Observation #10: They know how to make enemies. Big time.
Kate Brian (Megan Meade's Guide to the McGowan Boys)
What if I had made different choices from the start? What if I had stuck around to watch another year of seasons spin here in Oxford, staying to see the daffodils bloom or to wander beneath the privet tunnel hand in hand with Fisher? What if we had kept right on kissing until the naked ladies emerged near the Osage orange? What if I had lingered long enough to see cape jasmine arrive, her voluptuous white bundles an aromatic call for summer love? Or even longer, when the spider lilies burst open in the fall and the yellow autumn light fell low among missy roots? What if I had stayed through winter, forming snow angels with my lover beneath the icy cedar boughs? What if I had not let fear defeat me after Fisher knelt before me in my mother's backyard garden, ring in his hand and happy-ever-after in his heart?
Julie Cantrell (Perennials)
Ah-there's our boy!" Bill pointed at the head of the crowd as they neared the stadium. A lean,muscular boy was running, faster than the others,his back to Luce. His hair was dark brown and shiny, his shoulders deeply tanned and painted with intersecting red-and-black bands. When he turned his head slightly to the left,Luce caught a quick glimpse of his profile.He was nothing like the Daniel she had left in her parents' backyard. And yet- "Daniel!" Luce said. "He looks-" "Different and also precisely the same?" Bill asked. "Yes." "That's his soul you recognize. Regardless of how you two may look on the outside,you'll always know each other's souls." It hadn't occured to Luce until now how remarkable it was that the recognized Daniel in every life. Her soul found his. "That's...beautiful." Bill scratched at a scab on his arm with a gnarly claw. "If you say so.
Lauren Kate (Passion (Fallen, #3))
She saw Daniel hovering over her in his simple peasant's clothes...but then, a moment later, he was bare-chested, with long blond hair...and suddenly he wore a knight's helmet, whose visor he lifted to kiss her lips...but before he did,he shifted into his present self, the Daniel she'd left in her parents' backyard in Thunderbolt when she stepped through into time. This was the Daniel, she realized, she'd been looking for all along. She reached for him,she called his name, but then he changed again. And again. She saw more Daniels than she'd ever thought possible,each one more gorgeous than the last.They folded into each other like a vast accordion, each image of him tilting and altering in the light of the sky behind him.The cut of his nose,the line of his jawbone, the tone of his skin,the shape of his lips, all whirled in and out of focus,morphing all the time. Everything changed except his eyes. His violet eyes always stayed the same. They haunted her,hiding something terrible,something she didn't understand. Something she didn't want to understand. Fear? In the visions,the terror in Daniel's eyes was so intense Luce actually wanted to look away from their beauty. What could someone as powerful as Daniel fear? There was only one thing: Luce's dying. She was experiencing a montage of her death over and over and over again. This was what Daniel's eyes looked like, throughout time,just before her life went up in flames. She had seen this fear in him before.She hated it because it always meant their time was over.She saw it now in every one of his faces. The fear flashed from infinite times and places. Suddenly,she knew there was more: He wasn't afraid for her,not because she was walking into the darkness of another death.He didn't fear that it might cause her pain. Daniel was afraid of her. "Lu Xin!" his voice cried out to her from the battlefield. She could see him through the haze of visions.He was the only thing coming in clearly-because everything else around her was lit up startingly white.Everything inside her was,too.Was her love of Daniel burning her up? Was it her own passion,not his,that destroyed her every time? "No!" His hand reached out for hers. But it was too late.
Lauren Kate (Passion (Fallen, #3))
The sorrow I feel has not disappeared, but it has been integrated into my life as a painful part of a healthy whole. Initially, my loss was so overwhelming to me that it was the dominant emotion—sometimes the only emotion—I had. I felt like I was staring at the stump of a huge tree that had just been cut down in my backyard. That stump, which sat all alone, kept reminding me of the beloved tree that I had lost. I could think of nothing but that tree. Every time I looked out the window, all I could see was that stump. Eventually, however, I decided to do something about it. I landscaped my backyard, reclaiming it once again as my own. I decided to keep the stump there, since it was both too big and too precious to remove. Instead of getting rid of it, I worked around it. I planted shrubs, trees, flowers, and grass. I laid out a brick pathway and built two benches. Then I watched everything grow. Now, three years later, the stump remains, still reminding me of the beloved tree I lost. But the stump is surrounded by a beautiful garden of blooming flowers and growing trees and lush grass. Likewise, the sorrow I feel remains, but I have tried to create a landscape around the loss so that what was once ugly is now an integral part of a larger, lovely whole.
Jerry Sittser (A Grace Disguised: How the Soul Grows through Loss)
It was my father who called the city the Mansion on the River. He was talking about Charleston, South Carolina, and he was a native son, peacock proud of a town so pretty it makes your eyes ache with pleasure just to walk down its spellbinding, narrow streets. Charleston was my father’s ministry, his hobbyhorse, his quiet obsession, and the great love of his life. His bloodstream lit up my own with a passion for the city that I’ve never lost nor ever will. I’m Charleston-born, and bred. The city’s two rivers, the Ashley and the Cooper, have flooded and shaped all the days of my life on this storied peninsula. I carry the delicate porcelain beauty of Charleston like the hinged shell of some soft-tissued mollusk. My soul is peninsula-shaped and sun-hardened and river-swollen. The high tides of the city flood my consciousness each day, subject to the whims and harmonies of full moons rising out of the Atlantic. I grow calm when I see the ranks of palmetto trees pulling guard duty on the banks of Colonial Lake or hear the bells of St. Michael’s calling cadence in the cicada-filled trees along Meeting Street. Deep in my bones, I knew early that I was one of those incorrigible creatures known as Charlestonians. It comes to me as a surprising form of knowledge that my time in the city is more vocation than gift; it is my destiny, not my choice. I consider it a high privilege to be a native of one of the loveliest American cities, not a high-kicking, glossy, or lipsticked city, not a city with bells on its fingers or brightly painted toenails, but a ruffled, low-slung city, understated and tolerant of nothing mismade or ostentatious. Though Charleston feels a seersuckered, tuxedoed view of itself, it approves of restraint far more than vainglory. As a boy, in my own backyard I could catch a basket of blue crabs, a string of flounder, a dozen redfish, or a net full of white shrimp. All this I could do in a city enchanting enough to charm cobras out of baskets, one so corniced and filigreed and elaborate that it leaves strangers awed and natives self-satisfied. In its shadows you can find metalwork as delicate as lace and spiral staircases as elaborate as yachts. In the secrecy of its gardens you can discover jasmine and camellias and hundreds of other plants that look embroidered and stolen from the Garden of Eden for the sheer love of richness and the joy of stealing from the gods. In its kitchens, the stoves are lit up in happiness as the lamb is marinating in red wine sauce, vinaigrette is prepared for the salad, crabmeat is anointed with sherry, custards are baked in the oven, and buttermilk biscuits cool on the counter.
Pat Conroy (South of Broad)
Michelle Obama, spoke to supporters in rural Iowa about why she agreed to let her husband run. “Barack and I talked long and hard about this decision. This wasn’t an easy decision for us,” she explained, “because we’ve got two beautiful little girls and we have a wonderful life and everything was going fine, and there would have been nothing that would have been more disruptive than a decision to run for president of the United States. “And as more people talked to us about it, the question came up again and again, what people were most concerned about. They were afraid. It was fear. Fear again, raising its ugly head in one of the most important decisions that we would make. Fear of everything. Fear that we might lose. Fear that he might get hurt. Fear that this might get ugly. Fear that it would hurt our family. Fear. “You know the reason why I said ‘Yes’? Because I am tired of being afraid. I am tired of living in a country where every decision that we have made over the last ten years wasn’t for something, but it was because people told us we had to fear something. We had to fear people who looked different from us, fear people who believed in things that were different from us, fear one another right here in our own backyards. I am so tired of fear, and I don’t want my girls to live in a country, in a world, based on fear.” May her words reverberate well into the future.
Barry Glassner (The Culture of Fear: Why Americans Are Afraid of the Wrong Things: Crime, Drugs, Minorities, Teen Moms, Killer Kids, Muta)
Subject of Thought Number of Times Thought Occurred per Year (in descending order) L. 580.0 Family 400.0 Brushing tongue 150.0 Earplugs 100.0 Bill-paying 52.0 Panasonic three-wheeled vacuum cleaner, greatness of 45.0 Sunlight makes you cheerful 40.0 Traffic frustration 38.0 Penguin books, all 35.0 Job, should I quit? 34.0 Friends, don't have any 33.0 Marriage, a possibility? 32.0 Vending machines 31.0 Straws don't unsheath well 28.0 Shine on moving objects 25.0 McCartney more talented than Lennon? 23.0 Friends smarter, more capable than I am 19.0 Paper-towel dispensers 19.0 "What oft was thought, but ne'er" etc. 18.0 People are very dissimilar 16.0 Trees, beauty of 15.0 Sidewalks 15.0 Friends are unworthy of me 15.0 Indentical twins separated at birth, studies of traits 14.0 Intelligence, going fast 14.0 Wheelchair ramps, their insane danger 14.0 Urge to kill 13.0 Escalator invention 12.0 People are very similar 12.0 "Not in my backyard" 11.0 Straws float now 10.0 DJ, would I be happy as one? 9.0 "If you can't get out of it, get into it" 9.0 Pen, felt-tip 9.0 Gasoline, nice smell of 8.0 Pen, ballpoint 8.0 Stereo systems 8.0 Fear of getting mugged again 7.0 Staplers 7.0 "Roaches check in, but they don't check out" 6.0 Dinner roll, image of 6.0 Shoes 6.0 Bags 5.0 Butz, Earl 4.0 Sweeping, brooms 4.0 Whistling, yodel trick 4.0 "You can taste it with your eyes" 4.0 Dry-cleaning fluid, smell of 3.0 Zip-lock tops 2.0 Popcorn 1.0 Birds regurgitate food and feed young with it 0.5 Kant, Immanuel 0.5
Nicholson Baker (The Mezzanine)
I loved driving with Marlboro Man. I saw things I’d never seen before, things I’d never even considered in my two and a half decades of city life. For the first time ever, I began to grasp the concept of north, south, east, and west, though I imagine it would take another twenty-five years before I got them straight. I saw fence lines and gates made of welded iron pipe, and miles upon miles of barbed wire. I saw creeks--rocky, woodsy creeks that made the silly water hazard in my backyard seem like a little mud puddle. And I saw wide open land as far as the eye could see. I’d never known such beauty. Marlboro Man loved showing me everything, pointing at pastures and signs and draws and lakes and giving me the story behind everything we saw. The land, both on his family’s ranch and on the ranches surrounding it, made sense to him: he saw it not as one wide open, never-ending space, but as neatly organized parcels, each with its own purpose and history. “Betty Smith used to own this part of our ranch with her husband,” he’d say. “They never had kids and were best friends with my grandparents.” Then he’d tell some legend of Betty Smith’s husband’s grandfather, remembering such vivid details, you’d think he’d been there himself. I absorbed it all, every word of it. The land around him pulsated with the heartbeats of all who’d lived there before…and as if it were his duty to pay honor to each and every one of them, he told me their names, their stories, their relationship, their histories. I loved that he knew all those things.
Ree Drummond (The Pioneer Woman: Black Heels to Tractor Wheels)
For while asceticism is certainly an important strand in the frugal tradition, so, too, is the celebration of simple pleasures. Indeed, one argument that is made repeatedly in favor of simple living is that it helps one to appreciate more fully elementary and easily obtained pleasures such as the enjoyment of companionship and natural beauty. This is another example of something we have already noted: the advocates of simple living do not share a unified and consistent notion of what it involves. Different thinkers emphasize different aspects of the idea, and some of these conflict. Truth, unlike pleasure, has rarely been viewed as morally suspect. Its value is taken for granted by virtually all philosophers. Before Nietzsche, hardly anyone seriously considered as a general proposition the idea that truth may not necessarily be beneficial.26 There is a difference, though, between the sort of truth the older philosophers had in mind and the way truth is typically conceived of today. Socrates, the Epicureans, the Cynics, the Stoics, and most of the other sages assume that truth is readily available to anyone with a good mind who is willing to think hard. This is because their paradigm of truth—certainly the truth that matters most—is the sort of philosophical truth and enlightenment that can be attained through a conversation with like-minded friends in the agora or the garden. Searching for and finding such truth is entirely compatible with simple living. But today things are different. We still enjoy refined conversation about philosophy, science, religion, the arts, politics, human nature, and many other areas of theoretical interest. And these conversations do aim at truth, in a sense. As Jürgen Habermas argues, building on Paul Grice’s analysis of conversational conventions, regardless of how we actually behave and our actual motivations, our discussions usually proceed on the shared assumption that we are all committed to establishing the truth about the topic under discussion.27 But a different paradigm of truth now dominates: the paradigm of truth established by science. For the most part this is not something that ordinary people can pursue by themselves through reflection, conversation, or even backyard observation and experiment. Does dark matter exist? Does eating blueberries decrease one’s chances of developing cancer? Is global warming producing more hurricanes? Does early involvement with music and dance make one smarter or morally better? Are generous people happier than misers? People may discuss such questions around the table. But in most cases when we talk about such things, we are ultimately prepared to defer to the authority of the experts whose views and findings are continually reported in the media.
Emrys Westacott (The Wisdom of Frugality: Why Less Is More - More or Less)
I rail a lot against passion, because I feel like passion can be very exclusionary, and very elitist, and it can leave a lot of people feeling like they don't belong... I'm much more interested in allowing people to follow curiosity, which is a much more gentle impulse that doesn't require that you sacrifice your entire life for something. It's more of kind of a scavenger hunt, where you're allowed to pick up these tiny beautiful little clues along the pathway. It's more of a tap on the shoulder that asks you to turn your attention one inch to the left. Oh that's a little bit mildly interesting - what is that? Okay now I'm going to take that clue... I'm going to take it another inch, and I'm going to take it another inch. Rather than this idea that the symphony is born whole, because you sit down and you're struck by lightening and then you start to create. Curiosity I think, is a far more friendly way to do creativity than passion." ...this is why I say the path of curiosity is the scavenger hunt, because it took my probably three years between "gee it would be nice to put some plants in my backyard" to here I am in the South Pacific exploring the history of moss and inventing this giant novel. You know I think everybody thinks that creativity comes in lightening strikes, but I think it comes with whispers. And then the whispers can grow thunderous over time if you are patient enough to explore it, almost in the way that a scientist would. Be open to - you don't need to know why you are interested in this, it will be revealed if you continue to investigate. That's all that curiosity asks of you. Passion asks you to throw it all in the bonfire. And curiosity is way more generous in that it just says - give me a little bit of your time and let's see what we can do. Fear is part of our make-up, it's something that's inherent in us, it's a protective device. My experience with fear is to permit it to exist and then to figure out how to work with it. And to me working with fear is what courage is. I've never started any project that I wasn't afraid... during the entire thing.And the conversation that I have with fear is not to say you are the death of creativity and I can't be creative because you exist, but rather to say: "You are part of the family of my consciousness. You are one of the emotions that I possess and I hear your complaint. I see your anxiety and I see everything you are putting before me about how this is going to be a disaster, and how I'm going to die and how everyone's going to mock me and how I'm going to fail... and I thank you so much for your contribution, but your sister creativity and I are going to go off on this journey now and do this thing but you are allowed to be in the car. We're going on a road trip, but I don't expect you to not come." And once you allow fear to just be present it seems to quiet down and go to sleep and then you can go about your work. But it's never out of the picture and I don't waste my energy trying to kick it out of the picture because that feels to me just like a colossal exhausting waste of energy. Whereas a radical kind of inclusive self acceptance seems to be a way to create a lot more.
Elizabeth Gilbert
Could this be a picture of me praying by the kitchen sink while I’m washing my dishes? It could be. And, yes, the Lord assures me that my eyes might be open as I take in the view from the backyard. I see the trees that my husband and I planted together, and I praise God for His gift of a husband. Could this be a picture of me praising the Lord as I snuggle in close to my husband
Darlene Schacht (Messy Beautiful Love: Hope and Redemption for Real-Life Marriages)
Petrified, my body is trembling uncontrollably as every nerve violently pulsates at my fingertips. My heart pounds hard, knocking at my chest, wanting to burst from my body as I stare out the window to the backyard that overlooks a magnificent lake, and what was once a beautiful backdrop to a loving home. Frozen in place with the phone to one ear, I listen in disbelief to the cruel words coming from the woman who is my entire world. At this moment, it seems as though she can easily dismiss my life as if it never meant anything to her. Confused and traumatized, I pull the hammer back on the gun, and put my finger on the trigger. Gasping for air, I struggle to find each breath as I uncontrollably hyperventilate. My breathing is so erratic that when I speak saliva spews from my mouth and drools down my chin. I’m losing control of all emotions and sensibility. I can’t think straight. I don’t even know who I am anymore. I’m in utter distress as I put the gun to my head and scream my heart out, “Tell me now! Do you still love me or not?” The woman on the other end of the line is listening, but cannot hear my distress or just doesn’t want to.
Steven Craig (Ghost of a Rose)
We realized that what too often comes from a conventional user-centered innovation process, even in partnership with some of the greatest companies on earth, is unicorns: ideas that are beautiful to think about and highly interesting, but that will never appear in the marketplace or your backyard, because they’re conceived in blinkered isolation from the myriad of things that actually determine what makes it to market and what doesn’t.
Mark Payne (How to Kill a Unicorn: How the World's Hottest Innovation Factory Builds Bold Ideas That Make It to Market)
Stop judging by mere appearances, but instead judge correctly.” —John 7:24 (NIV) Driving home from work, I glanced into my rearview mirror to see a beautiful pink sky. It looked like another great sunset. I turned onto my street and noticed three young teenage boys hanging out two doors down from where I live. Too bad they won’t notice this great sunset, I thought. I pulled into my driveway and walked inside. My husband, Johnny, called out from the backyard, “Beautiful sunset tonight! Come on out!” The sky had turned a bright crimson red with streaks of leftover pink etched through it. I glanced to where the boys were still talking. “Those boys have no clue that there is a magnificent sunset happening right before their eyes! Too bad,” I said, shaking my head. At that moment, I heard one of them call out, “Hey, guys, check it out! The sky’s all red! It looks awesome!” “Wow!” the others exclaimed in unison. “Cool!” “Oh my,” I said, dismayed, “I sure jumped to a mighty quick conclusion.” Later that evening, I read an inspirational quote that comes daily to my in-box: “When you’re forming your opinions, do it carefully—go slow; hasty judgments oft are followed by regretting—that I know. —Anon.” After work the next day, I saw the boys again. I pulled the car over and rolled down the window. “Hey, guys,” I called out, “great sunset last night, huh?” “Yes, ma’am!” they all replied. One of the boys held up his cell phone. “I got a really good picture of it on my phone. Want to see?” “Sure,” I said with a big smile. “I’d love to.” Forgive me, Lord, for I truly want to see the best in everyone—right from the start. —Melody Bonnette Swang Digging Deeper: Prv 12:18, 31:26
Guideposts (Daily Guideposts 2014)
Two years before our arrival at Maplehurst, we had left the Midwest eager for new jobs, milder weather, and a house of our own with a real backyard. We were unprepared for the enormity of our losses. Good friends. Close-knit community. A meaningful connection with the work of our minds and our hands. There was one lost thing, in particular. It was such a natural part of our prewilderness lives that I only ever recognized it after it was gone. In our northern city, we had lived a seasonal rhythm of summer festivals and winter sledding, spring baseball games and autumn apple picking. Our moments and our months were distinguished by the color of the trees, deep red or spring green, and the color of the lake, sparkling and playful in summer, menacing and dull in winter. These things were the beautiful, sometimes harsh, but always rhythmic backdrop in our days. Time was like music. It had a melody. In the wilderness, the only thing that differentiated one season from the next was my terrible winter asthma. Without time's music, I became aimless and disconnected, like a child's lost balloon.
Christie Purifoy (Roots and Sky: A Journey Home in Four Seasons)
The potential for experiencing pleasure is without limits, and the well of previously unknown beauty essentially bottomless. For—when free from modern life’s clouding distractions, and released from its obstinate grasp—one can tune into nature’s wavelength and experience her every breath, from the bobbing flight of a wagtail to the thundering cascade of a waterfall, as a new thrill. In these timeless moments, as one receives pulse after exhilarating pulse from the ecospheric orchestra, philosophy becomes redundant, just as life’s meaning is made abundantly clear.
Joe Gray (Thirteen Paces by Four: Backyard Biophilia and the Emerging Earth Ethic)
In another life, we might have spent this evening nestled in a corner table at some café, drinking good Bordeaux, listening to Chet Baker, discussing hypothetical trips to the Greek islands or the construction of a backyard greenhouse where we would consider the merits of growing a lemon (or avocado?) tree in a pot and sit under a bougainvillea vine like the one my mom planted the year I turned eleven, before my dad left. Jazz. Santorini. Lemon trees. Beautiful, loving details, none of which matter anymore. Not in this life, anyhow. That chapter has ended. No, the book has.
Sarah Jio (All the Flowers in Paris)
Max was a lover of dogs the way some men are indiscriminate lovers of women. Nothing turned his head more quickly than a dog trotting down the street or cutting through a backyard. Dogs could do no wrong; no amount of garbaging, rug pissing, or flea infestation could alter the course of Max’s true love. Bilko, in all other eyes save Max’s, was unremarkable. She knew no tricks, had few endearing habits, but he didn’t care.
Jon Cohen (Max Lakeman and the Beautiful Stranger)
became a blurry swirl of shapes and colors narrowing into a luminous spot of white light at the end of a black anoxic tunnel and dissolving into a rapid series of bright sharp images that I recognized at once from my childhood: long forgotten memories of important moments flashing by faster than anything I’d ever experienced, twenty to thirty frames a second, each one of them original, like perfect photographic slides from the archives of my young life, every scene compressed into a complete story with sights and sounds and smells and feelings from the time. Each image was euphoric, rapturous. The smiling face of my beautiful young mother / a gentle touch from her hand on my face / absorbing her love / playing in the sand at the seashore with my father / waves washing up on the beach / feeling the strength and security of his presence / soothing, kind-hearted praise from a teacher at school / faces and voices of adoring aunts and uncles / steam trains coming in at the local railroad station / hearing myself say “choo-choo” / the excitement of shared discovery with my brother on Christmas morning / running free through a familiar forest with a happy dog / hitting a baseball hard and hearing encouraging cries from my parents behind me in the bleachers / shooting baskets in a backyard court with a buddy from high school / a tender kiss from the soft warm lips of a lovely teenage girl / the encouraging thrust of her stomach and thighs against mine.
John Laurence (The Cat From Hue: A Vietnam War Story)
Here’s how these events work. As you stand in this beautifully groomed backyard next to huge platters of steaks, lobsters, and clams, you get interrogated by the high-dollar donors who pepper you with questions about what the party intends to do about the issue they consider to be the most important. How you respond to these questions about climate change and the Trans-Pacific Partnership determines the amount these donors will give. These are smart people who know a tremendous amount about the subject they’re questioning you on, so you cannot give vague answers. You have to be on your toes. You also have to look confident and casual and show that you are not manipulating or hiding anything.
Donna Brazile (Hacks: The Inside Story of the Break-ins and Breakdowns That Put Donald Trump in the White House)
My childhood was elegant homes, tree-lined streets, the milkman, building backyard forts, droning airplanes, blue skies, picket fences, green grass, cherry trees. Middle America as it’s supposed to be. But on the cherry tree, there’s this pitch oozing out – some black, some yellow – and millions of red ants crawling all over it. I discovered that if one looks a little closer at this beautiful world, there are always red ants underneath.
David Lynch
Brad and I were very excited to order a few of these delectable beauties in order to reenact the skinning and spitting-over-an-open-fire scene from Game of Thrones. Now, I hate to split hares, but…first of all, it is NOT at all as easy as it looks in that scene. Meera and Osha made it look so simple. But both Brad and my pulling together couldn’t get that damn skin off. The rabbit wound up looking more like Theon Greyjoy’s finger than a rabbit. Second, apparently you cannot light an open fire in your backyard in Los Angeles. No one told us that. Thanks, LAFD, for understanding. Third, it pretty much tastes like chicken.
Amazon Reviewers (Did You Read That Review?: A Compilation of Amazon's Funniest Reviews)
they liked to listen to the kids who played in the backyard. The kids were always talking about how they had done this or that, or gone here or there, downtown. Wiggly knew that towns had parks and stores and restaurants and bakeries and places to get sweet treats. That sounded wonderful to him! “All we have here is plants,” he said to his friends. “Wouldn’t it be amazing if we had all kinds of special places to go, like the kids always talk about?” “I’d like that,” said Rattles. “Imagine a five-star restaurant where we could eat tasty little insects all day long. Except for mosquitoes, of course!” he added, glancing quickly at Munchy. Munchy laughed. “I’d like a soda fountain where we garden creatures could order sugar-water shakes and other yummy treats!” she chimed. “I’d like a park,” said Wiggly. “A beautiful park with a maze of fun tunnels to wiggle through.” Munchy’s eyes lit up. “Oh, that would be so much fun! What would you like, Snarky?
Arnie Lightning (Wiggly the Worm)
Some of us are born to live lives on an exaggerated scale. Even as children we have a larger suitcase in which to carry all the things that will one day be on our backs. We are cumbersome, beautiful and ugly, fistfighters and bug savers. We are the living words of poems, we little kids who are abused, and we have cut-out rainbows hidden where only we can make wishes upon them. I mean to say, we have imagination, and maybe mine was always active; while others were shining their Sunday shoes, I was capturing a herd of wild horses in my backyard. I must have seemed very . . . wrong.
Rickie Lee Jones (Last Chance Texaco: Chronicles of an American Troubadour)
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Aqua Hot Tubs
Of course there’d been whispers. At the Lemon Drop, barbershops and beauty salons, backyard barbecues. Sanctuaries of Black truth. Murmurs and speculation about innocent people gunned or beaten down for the crime of not dying with the first devastating waves.
Veronica G. Henry (The Quarter Storm (Mambo Reina, #1))
Write down your intention on a small piece of paper. Make sure that it is a direct statement. Take the paper in your hands, close your eyes, and visualize what you wish to manifest. Imagine it right in front of you. What does your life look like if you have it? Focus on all the details. Fold the piece of paper three times and imagine that it is a seed. Bury the paper in your backyard, or in a potted plant in your home. As you nurture that plant, you will be nurturing what you wish to manifest. Think about that intention every time you see that plant or tend to your backyard. Imagine your intention blooming like a beautiful flower over time.
Mystic Dylan (The Witch's Guide to Manifestation: Witchcraft for the Life You Want)
As a group which believed in civic responsibility and the salutary effect of applied social science, it was natural that the WASP elite would take an interest in housing. In cities like Philadelphia, Chicago, Detroit, and Boston, the panels of experts in the housing field invariably had a definite ethnic cast. They became certified as experts either by going to the already mentioned Ivy League universities or by getting appointed to boards of the various cities’ planning commissions, which were often descendants of local ruling class initiatives that began with the city-beautiful movement or the settlement house movement around the time of World War I. The Philadelphia Housing Association was one such group. It started off as a blueblood organization complaining about backyard privies and piggeries in South Philadelphia and recommending common-sense measures for local improvement of the housing situation, things like liens against absentee landlords to pay for repairs. All of that changed in 1937 with the New Deal housing act of that year, which established local housing authorities across the country with federal money and government authority. The various housing authorities were charged with creating master plans by staffs of “experts” of a certain ethnic (i.c., WASP) cast which was invariably not the ethnic cast of the neighborhoods which were targeted for destruction. Urban renewal as practiced in the case of Berman v. Parker meant that certain people were empowered to come up with a master plan for the cities, one that would now have the power of law, specifically eminent domain, behind it along with enormous amounts of federal money, which was made available to tear down neighborhoods where people from other ethnic groups lived. The experts could do this according to their own purportedly scientific but ultimately ethnocentric criteria of things like blight, hygiene, decay, etc. Taken together the WASP penchant for meddling in housing along with residual WASP anti-Catholicism meant bad news for places like Bridesburg and Poletown, especially when this group was empowered to act on its ethnic prejudices by federal money and a Supreme Court that was willing to abridge property rights in the interest of increased social engineering.
E. Michael Jones (The Slaughter of Cities: Urban Renewal as Ethnic Cleansing)
This is crazy!” I went on. “Think about what you’re doing! What about your rose garden? What about the gate you and Beverly put in between our backyards? What about the dent in Tommy’s door from when I threw that shoe at him? What about the growth-chart lines on the kitchen doorway? What about the crepe myrtle you planted in the spot where we buried Bailey?” my voice had ratcheted up a bit. The tears started to spill over. “Mom!” I was pleading now. “You can’t do this! You will always regret it.
Katherine Center (Everyone Is Beautiful)
so by way of providing an intellectual first-aid kit, I would suggest the following: Do not look for familiar landmarks-you won't find them; you are not entering the backyard of your neighbors, but a universe you did not know existed. Do not look for familiar faces - you are about to meet a race of giants, who might have and ought to have been your neighbors. Do not say that these giants are "unreal" because you have never seen them before - check your eyesight, not Hugo's, and your premises, not his; it was not his purpose to show you what you had seen a thousand times before. Do not say the actions of these giants are "impossible" because they are heroic, noble, intelligent, beautiful - remember that the cowardly, the depraved, the mindless, the ugly are not all that is possible to man. Do not say that this glowing new universe is an "escape" - you will witness harder, more demanding, more tragic battles than any you have seen on poolroom street corners; Do not say that "life is not like that" - ask yourself WHOSE life?
Ayn Rand (The Romantic Manifesto)
We didn’t have to go all the way to China to see beauty. Or to have an adventure. They were both right here, literally in our backyard.
Justina Chen (North of Beautiful)
tonight the backyard is brutal in its twilit emptiness & I have put my lips on the glass of his face again so I won't be lonely & I have dressed to please him because it's too quiet here my hand alive in the cage of his an actual dandelion in the grass beside his sandal the mosquitoes grazing our ankles we should go inside he says as the pitchblack comes on again like arsenic over the glowing lawn
Deborah Landau (The Last Usable Hour (Lannan Literary Selections))
Whitney Sanderson has loved horses since she was a child, riding in a 4-H club and reading series like The Saddle Club and The Black Stallion. In addition to always having a horse or two in the backyard, she grew up surrounded by beautiful equine artwork created by her mother, Horse Diaries illustrator Ruth Sanderson. Whitney is the author of Horse Diaries #5: Golden Sun and Horse Diaries #10: Darcy, as well as another chapter book called Horse Rescue: Treasure.
Whitney Sanderson (Lily (Horse Diaries #15))
I never deadhead the coneflowers, though, for there are few things more beautiful than the sight of a goldfinch still wearing his summer finery and riding a coneflower tossing in the autumn wind.
Margaret Renkl (The Comfort of Crows: A Backyard Year)
The coffee filling the pot looks beautiful this morning, made from mountain water, then I realize I had forgotten to put any ground beans in, and I start over. I am starting over. I am laying down my ambition—to disguise that I am a creature of narcissus, as if a daughter of narcissus could be anything but a narcissus. I am not seeking a man to love and be loved by, though of course I always am, I am asking to learn to like this large awkward being, flightless dragon damsel fly— Fashion thyself, then others shall thee beare— to pull up my vanity, out of the backyard dirt, where I buried it when I saw that it and I could not both go forth alive from that house.
Sharon Olds (Arias)
But it is the lilacs that truly herald the coming of spring: lavender and white and blue and sometimes a purple deep as grapes, they bloom in the alleys and over backyard fences and in graveyards. Beauty is everywhere, including the most unexpected places. There is no respite from it.
jena blum
What if I had made different choices from the start? What if I had stuck around to watch another year of seasons spin here in Oxford, staying to see the daffodils bloom or to wander beneath the privet tunnel hand in hand with Fisher? What if we had kept right on kissing until the naked ladies emerged near the Osage orange? What if I had lingered long enough to see cape jasmine arrive, her voluptuous white bundles an aromatic call for summer love? Or even longer, when the spider lilies burst open in the fall and the yellow autumn light fell low among mossy roots? What if I had stayed through winter, forming snow angels with my lover beneath the icy cedar boughs? What if I had not let fear defeat me after Fisher knelt before me in my mother's backyard garden, ring in his hand and happy-ever-after in his heart?
Julie Cantrell (Perennials)
It was a beauty at war with time, not in harmony with who she was.
J.N. Chaney (Path of Tyrants (Backyard Starship, #13))
A loud knock at the door interrupts us. “Abre la puerta, soy Elena.” “Who’s that?” “The bride.” “Let me in!” Elena commands. Alex unlocks the door. A vision in white ruffles with dozens of dollar bills safety-pinned to the back of her dress squeezes her way into the bathroom, then shuts the door behind her. “Okay, what’s goin’ on?” She, too, sniffs a bunch of times. “Was Paco in here?” Alex and I nod. “What the fuck does that guy eat that it comes out his other end smelling so rotten? Dammit,” she says, wadding up tissue and putting it over her nose. “It was a beautiful ceremony,” I say through my own tissue. This is the most awkward and surreal situation I’ve ever been in. Elena grabs my hand. “Come outside and enjoy the party. My aunt can be confrontational, but she doesn’t mean any harm. Besides, I think deep down she likes you.” “I’m taking her home,” Alex says, playing the role of my hero. I wonder when he’ll get sick of it. “No, you’re not takin’ her home or I’ll lock both of you in this stinkin’ smelly room so you’ll stay.” Elena means every word. Another knock at the door. “Vete vete.” I don’t know what Elena said, but she sure said it with gusto. “Soy Jorge.” I shrug and look to Alex for an explanation. “It’s the groom,” he says, clueing me in. Jorge slips in. He isn’t as crude as the rest of us because he ignores the fact that the room smells like something died. But he sniffs loudly a few times and his eyes start to water. “Come on, Elena,” Jorge says, trying to cover his nose inconspicuously but doing a poor job of it. “Your guests are wondering where you are.” “Can’t you see I’m talkin’ to my cousin and his date?” “Yeah, but--” Elena holds up a hand to silence him while holding the tissue over her nose with the other. “I said, I’m talkin’ to my cousin and his date,” she declares with attitude. “And I’m not finished yet.” “You,” Elena says, pointing directly at me. “Come with me. Alex, I want you and your brothers to sing.” Alex shakes his head. “Elena, I don’t think--” Elena holds up a hand in front of Alex, silencing even him. “I didn’t ask you to think. I asked you to join your brothers in singin’ to me and my new husband.” Elena opens the door and yanks me through the house, stopping only when we reach the backyard. She lets me go only to grab the microphone from the lead singer. “Paco!” she announces loudly. “Yeah, I’m talkin’ to you,” Elena says, pointing to Paco talking to a bunch of girls. “Next time you want to take a dump, do it in someone else’s house.
Simone Elkeles (Perfect Chemistry (Perfect Chemistry, #1))
She lives in the coolest house. It’s really big and super modern. They even have a spa bath in the bathroom as well as a jacuzzi out by the pool. We talked about spending time sunbathing in her backyard as soon as the weather was warm enough. The lounge chairs that were scattered around the sides of the pool were so inviting that I had to try them out. Then when I found that they reclined right back, I lied there picturing myself during the summer months, just relaxing by that beautiful sparkling pool. Sara is so lucky! She seems to have pretty much everything a girl could wish for. Her bedroom has the prettiest pink wallpaper with a gorgeous white flower print as a feature wall. And her furniture is all white. She has a huge comfy bed with matching bedside tables. I’ve never known a girl our age to have a queen sized bed though. Even my parents only have a double bed and Sara’s bed seems enormous in comparison. The two hot pink chrome lamps that sit on her bedside tables are the coolest design and I just love the fluffy pink rug that spreads across the middle of her floor. And she even has
Katrina Kahler (Julia Jones' Diary / Horse Mad Girl / Diary of an Almost Cool Girl / Diary of Mr TDH)
I’m not trying to hide from the truth but to balance it, to remind myself that there are other truths, too. I need to remember that the earth, fragile as it is, remains heartbreakingly beautiful. I need to give my attention to a realm that is indifferent to fretful human mutterings and naked human anger, a world unaware of the hatred and distrust taking over the news.
Margaret Renkl (The Comfort of Crows: A Backyard Year)
World, world, forgive our ignorance and our foolish fears. Absolve us of our anger and our error. In your boundless gift for renewal, disregard our undeserving. For no reason but the hope that one day we will know the beauty of unloved things, accept our unuttered thanks.
Margaret Renkl (The Comfort of Crows: A Backyard Year)