Cloud Quotes

We've searched our database for all the quotes and captions related to Cloud. Here they are! All 200 of them:

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Clouds come floating into my life, no longer to carry rain or usher storm, but to add color to my sunset sky.
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Rabindranath Tagore (Stray Birds)
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Only once in your life, I truly believe, you find someone who can completely turn your world around. You tell them things that you’ve never shared with another soul and they absorb everything you say and actually want to hear more. You share hopes for the future, dreams that will never come true, goals that were never achieved and the many disappointments life has thrown at you. When something wonderful happens, you can’t wait to tell them about it, knowing they will share in your excitement. They are not embarrassed to cry with you when you are hurting or laugh with you when you make a fool of yourself. Never do they hurt your feelings or make you feel like you are not good enough, but rather they build you up and show you the things about yourself that make you special and even beautiful. There is never any pressure, jealousy or competition but only a quiet calmness when they are around. You can be yourself and not worry about what they will think of you because they love you for who you are. The things that seem insignificant to most people such as a note, song or walk become invaluable treasures kept safe in your heart to cherish forever. Memories of your childhood come back and are so clear and vivid it’s like being young again. Colours seem brighter and more brilliant. Laughter seems part of daily life where before it was infrequent or didn’t exist at all. A phone call or two during the day helps to get you through a long day’s work and always brings a smile to your face. In their presence, there’s no need for continuous conversation, but you find you’re quite content in just having them nearby. Things that never interested you before become fascinating because you know they are important to this person who is so special to you. You think of this person on every occasion and in everything you do. Simple things bring them to mind like a pale blue sky, gentle wind or even a storm cloud on the horizon. You open your heart knowing that there’s a chance it may be broken one day and in opening your heart, you experience a love and joy that you never dreamed possible. You find that being vulnerable is the only way to allow your heart to feel true pleasure that’s so real it scares you. You find strength in knowing you have a true friend and possibly a soul mate who will remain loyal to the end. Life seems completely different, exciting and worthwhile. Your only hope and security is in knowing that they are a part of your life.
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Bob Marley
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Life should not be a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in a pretty and well preserved body, but rather to skid in broadside in a cloud of smoke, thoroughly used up, totally worn out, and loudly proclaiming "Wow! What a Ride!
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Hunter S. Thompson (The Proud Highway: Saga of a Desperate Southern Gentleman, 1955-1967)
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Try to be a rainbow in someone's cloud.
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Maya Angelou (Letter to My Daughter)
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My life amounts to no more than one drop in a limitless ocean. Yet what is any ocean, but a multitude of drops?
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David Mitchell (Cloud Atlas)
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Ho! Ho! Ho! To the bottle I go To heal my heart and drown my woe Rain may fall, and wind may blow And many miles be still to go But under a tall tree will I lie And let the clouds go sailing by
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J.R.R. Tolkien
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Raindrops are my only reminder that clouds have a heartbeat. That I have one, too.
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Tahereh Mafi (Shatter Me (Shatter Me, #1))
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There was a star riding through clouds one night, & I said to the star, 'Consume me'.
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Virginia Woolf (The Waves (Annotated))
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A half-read book is a half-finished love affair.
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David Mitchell (Cloud Atlas)
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Not into older guys, huh?" asked Adrian once we were alone. "You're imagining things," I said. "Clearly, my stunning beauty has clouded your mind.
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Richelle Mead (Frostbite (Vampire Academy, #2))
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He was the crazy one who had painted himself black and defeated the world. She was the book thief without the words. Trust me, though, the words were on their way, and when they arrived, Liesel would hold them in her hands like the clouds, and she would wring them out like rain.
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Markus Zusak (The Book Thief)
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Don't worry, little dhampir. You might be surrounded by clouds, but you'll always be like sunshine to me.
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Richelle Mead (Shadow Kiss (Vampire Academy, #3))
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Moths," repeats Will. "You're afraid of moths?" "Not just a cloud of moths," she says, "like...a swarm of them. Everywhere. All those wings and legs and..." She shudders and shakes her head. "Terrifying," Will says with mock seriousness. "That's my girl. Tough as cotton balls." "Oh, Shut up.
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Veronica Roth (Divergent (Divergent, #1))
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A mother is the truest friend we have, when trials heavy and sudden fall upon us; when adversity takes the place of prosperity; when friends desert us; when trouble thickens around us, still will she cling to us, and endeavor by her kind precepts and counsels to dissipate the clouds of darkness, and cause peace to return to our hearts.
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Washington Irving
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Our lives are not our own. We are bound to others, past and present, and by each crime and every kindness, we birth our future.
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David Mitchell (Cloud Atlas)
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Be a rainbow in somebody else's cloud.
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Maya Angelou
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He sighed. "The clouds I can handle. But I can't fight with an eclipse.
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Stephenie Meyer (Eclipse (The Twilight Saga, #3))
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We are crayons and lunchboxes and swinging so high our sneakers punch holes in the clouds.
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Laurie Halse Anderson (Wintergirls)
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Sunny day Sweepin' the clouds away On my way to where the air is sweet
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Joe Raposo
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Life is so beautiful that death has fallen in love with it, a jealous, possessive love that grabs at what it can. But life leaps over oblivion lightly, losing only a thing or two of no importance, and gloom is but the passing shadow of a cloud...
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Yann Martel (Life of Pi)
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Feelings come and go like clouds in a windy sky. Conscious breathing is my anchor.
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Thich Nhat Hanh (Stepping into Freedom: Rules of Monastic Practice for Novices)
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I have learned that if you must leave a place that you have lived in and loved and where all your yesteryears are buried deep, leave it any way except a slow way, leave it the fastest way you can. Never turn back and never believe that an hour you remember is a better hour because it is dead. Passed years seem safe ones, vanquished ones, while the future lives in a cloud, formidable from a distance.
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Beryl Markham (West with the Night)
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If clouds are blocking the sun, there will always be a silver lining that reminds me to keep on trying.
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Matthew Quick (The Silver Linings Playbook)
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Travel far enough, you meet yourself.
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David Mitchell (Cloud Atlas)
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As a lamp, a cataract, a star in space an illusion, a dewdrop, a bubble a dream, a cloud, a flash of lightning view all created things like this.
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Red Pine (The Diamond Sutra)
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Books don't offer real escape, but they can stop a mind scratching itself raw.
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David Mitchell (Cloud Atlas)
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We all do things we desperately wish we could undo. Those regrets just become part of who we are, along with everything else. To spend time trying to change that, well, it's like chasing clouds.
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Libba Bray
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People observe the colors of a day only at its beginnings and ends, but to me it's quite clear that a day merges through a multitude of shades and intonations with each passing moment. A single hour can consist of thousands of different colors. Waxy yellows, cloud-spot blues. Murky darkness. In my line of work, I make it a point to notice them.
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Markus Zusak (The Book Thief)
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I believe there is another world waiting for us. A better world. And I'll be waiting for you there.
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David Mitchell (Cloud Atlas)
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Home is behind, the world ahead, And there are many paths to tread Through shadows to the edge of night, Until the stars are all alight. Then world behind and home ahead, We'll wander back and home to bed. Mist and twilight, cloud and shade, Away shall fade! Away shall fade!
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J.R.R. Tolkien (The Fellowship of the Ring (The Lord of the Rings, #1))
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When I am attacked by gloomy thoughts, nothing helps me so much as running to my books. They quickly absorb me and banish the clouds from my mind.
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Michel de Montaigne (Les Essais)
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Human minds are more full of mysteries than any written book and more changeable than the cloud shapes in the air.
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Louisa May Alcott (The Abbot's Ghost: A Christmas Story)
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Be still, sad heart! and cease repining; Behind the clouds is the sun still shining; Thy fate is the common fate of all, Into each life some rain must fall
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Henry Wadsworth Longfellow (Ballads and Other Poems)
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She was a whirling cloud of death, a queen of shadows, and these men were already carrion.
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Sarah J. Maas (Queen of Shadows (Throne of Glass, #4))
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You say you're 'depressed' - all i see is resilience. You are allowed to feel messed up and inside out. It doesn't mean you're defective - it just means you're human.
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David Mitchell (Cloud Atlas)
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People usually consider walking on water or in thin air a miracle. But I think the real miracle is not to walk either on water or in thin air, but to walk on earth. Every day we are engaged in a miracle which we don't even recognize: a blue sky, white clouds, green leaves, the black, curious eyes of a childβ€”our own two eyes. All is a miracle.
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Thich Nhat Hanh (The Miracle of Mindfulness: An Introduction to the Practice of Meditation)
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She was a beautiful dreamer. The kind of girl, who kept her head in the clouds, loved above the stars and left regret beneath the earth she walked on.
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Robert M. Drake
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The words were on their way, and when they arrived, she would hold them in her hands like the clouds, and she would wring them out like the rain.
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Markus Zusak (The Book Thief)
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Rest is not idleness, and to lie sometimes on the grass under trees on a summer's day, listening to the murmur of the water, or watching the clouds float across the sky, is by no means a waste of time.
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John Lubbock (The Use Of Life)
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Romance takes place in the middle distance. Romance is looking in at yourself through a window clouded with dew. Romance means leaving things out: where life grunts and shuffles, romance only sighs.
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Margaret Atwood
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Every gun that is made, every warship launched, every rocket fired signifies in the final sense, a theft from those who hunger and are not fed, those who are cold and are not clothed. This world in arms is not spending money alone. It is spending the sweat of its laborers, the genius of its scientists, the hopes of its children. This is not a way of life at all in any true sense. Under the clouds of war, it is humanity hanging on a cross of iron.
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Dwight D. Eisenhower
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Power, time, gravity, love. The forces that really kick ass are all invisible.
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David Mitchell (Cloud Atlas)
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Walk with the dreamers, the believers, the courageous, the cheerful, the planners, the doers, the successful people with their heads in the clouds and their feet on the ground. Let their spirit ignite a fire within you to leave this world better than when you found it...
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Wilferd Peterson
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Hope clouds observation.
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Frank Herbert (Dune (Dune Chronicles, #1))
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I want to tear myself from this place, from this reality, rise up like a cloud and float away, melt into this humid summer night and dissolve somewhere far, over the hills. But I am here, my legs blocks of concrete, my lungs empty of air, my throat burning. There will be no floating away.
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Khaled Hosseini (The Kite Runner)
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There are no rules of architecture for a castle in the clouds.
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G.K. Chesterton
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Souls cross ages like clouds cross skies, an' tho' a cloud's shape nor hue nor size don't stay the same, it's still a cloud an' so is a soul. Who can say where the cloud's blowed from or who the soul'll be 'morrow? Only Sonmi the east an' the west an' the compass an' the atlas, yay, only the atlas o' clouds.
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David Mitchell (Cloud Atlas)
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Meditate. Live purely. Be quiet. Do your work with mastery. Like the moon, come out from behind the clouds! Shine
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Gautama Buddha
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Wherever you are, at any moment, try and find something beautiful. A face, a line out of a poem, the clouds out of a window, some graffiti, a wind farm. Beauty cleans the mind.
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Matt Haig (Reasons to Stay Alive)
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I still search for you in crowds, in empty fields and soaring clouds. In city lights and passing cars, on winding roads and wishing stars.
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Lang Leav (Lullabies)
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Nothing is original. Steal from anywhere that resonates with inspiration or fuels your imagination. Devour old films, new films, music, books, paintings, photographs, poems, dreams, random conversations, architecture, bridges, street signs, trees, clouds, bodies of water, light and shadows. Select only things to steal from that speak directly to your soul. If you do this, your work (and theft) will be authentic. Authenticity is invaluable; originality is non-existent. And don’t bother concealing your thievery - celebrate it if you feel like it. In any case, always remember what Jean-Luc Godard said: β€œIt’s not where you take things from - it’s where you take them to." [MovieMaker Magazine #53 - Winter, January 22, 2004 ]
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Jim Jarmusch
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You think because he doesn't love you that you are worthless. You think that because he doesn't want you anymore that he is right -- that his judgement and opinion of you are correct. If he throws you out, then you are garbage. You think he belongs to you because you want to belong to him. Don't. It's a bad word, 'belong.' Especially when you put it with somebody you love. Love shouldn't be like that. Did you ever see the way the clouds love a mountain? They circle all around it; sometimes you can't even see the mountain for the clouds. But you know what? You go up top and what do you see? His head. The clouds never cover the head. His head pokes through, beacuse the clouds let him; they don't wrap him up. They let him keep his head up high, free, with nothing to hide him or bind him. You can't own a human being. You can't lose what you don't own. Suppose you did own him. Could you really love somebody who was absolutely nobody without you? You really want somebody like that? Somebody who falls apart when you walk out the door? You don't, do you? And neither does he. You're turning over your whole life to him. Your whole life, girl. And if it means so little to you that you can just give it away, hand it to him, then why should it mean any more to him? He can't value you more than you value yourself.
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Toni Morrison
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Unlimited power in the hands of limited people always leads to cruelty.
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David Mitchell (Cloud Atlas)
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Gaze into the fire, into the clouds, and as soon as the inner voices begin to speak... surrender to them. Don't ask first whether it's permitted, or would please your teachers or father or some god. You will ruin yourself if you do that.
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Hermann Hesse (Demian: Die Geschichte von Emil Sinclairs Jugend)
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Time that withers you will wither me. We will fall like ripe fruit and roll down the grass together. Dear friend, let me lie beside you watching the clouds until the earth covers us and we are gone.
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Jeanette Winterson (Written on the Body)
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Fantasy. Lunacy. All revolutions are, until they happen, then they are historical inevitabilities.
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David Mitchell (Cloud Atlas)
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It hurts to look at the clouds, but it also helps, like most things that cause pain.
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Matthew Quick (The Silver Linings Playbook)
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What wouldn't I give now for a never-changing map of the ever-constant ineffable? To possess, as it were, an atlas of clouds.
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David Mitchell (Cloud Atlas)
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Be comforted, dear soul! There is always light behind the clouds.
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Louisa May Alcott (Little Women)
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The Journey One day you finally knew what you had to do, and began, though the voices around you kept shouting their bad advice -- though the whole house began to tremble and you felt the old tug at your ankles. "Mend my life!" each voice cried. But you didn't stop. You knew what you had to do, though the wind pried with its stiff fingers at the very foundations, though their melancholy was terrible. It was already late enough, and a wild night, and the road full of fallen branches and stones. But little by little, as you left their voices behind, the stars began to burn through the sheets of clouds, and there was a new voice which you slowly recognized as your own, that kept you company as you strode deeper and deeper into the world, determined to do the only thing you could do -- determined to save the only life you could save.
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Mary Oliver
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Yes, I understand why things had to happen this way. I understand his reason for causing me pain. But mere understanding does not chase away the hurt. It does not call upon the sun when dark clouds have loomed over me. Let the rain come then if it must come! And let it wash away the dust that hurt my eyes!
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Jocelyn Soriano (Mend My Broken Heart)
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To the girl who reads by flashlight who sees dragons in the clouds who feels most alive in worlds that never were who knows magic is real who dreams This is for you
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Meagan Spooner (Hunted)
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all of us have a place in history. mine is clouds.
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Richard Brautigan
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Recognize that the very molecules that make up your body, the atoms that construct the molecules, are traceable to the crucibles that were once the centers of high mass stars that exploded their chemically rich guts into the galaxy, enriching pristine gas clouds with the chemistry of life. So that we are all connected to each other biologically, to the earth chemically and to the rest of the universe atomically. That’s kinda cool! That makes me smile and I actually feel quite large at the end of that. It’s not that we are better than the universe, we are part of the universe. We are in the universe and the universe is in us.
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Neil deGrasse Tyson
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We all want to do something to mitigate the pain of loss or to turn grief into something positive, to find a silver lining in the clouds. But I believe there is real value in just standing there, being still, being sad.
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John Green
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I'll be looking for you, Will, every moment, every single moment. And when we do find each other again, we'll cling together so tight that nothing and no one'll ever tear us apart. Every atom of me and every atom of you... We'll live in birds and flowers and dragonflies and pine trees and in clouds and in those little specks of light you see floating in sunbeams... And when they use our atoms to make new lives, they wont' just be able to take one, they'll have to take two, one of you and one of me, we'll be joined so tight...
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Philip Pullman (His Dark Materials Trilogy: The Golden Compass/The Subtle Knife/The Amber Spyglass)
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I believe cats to be spirits come to earth. A cat, I am sure, could walk on a cloud without coming through.
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Jules Verne
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...there ain't no journey what don't change you some.
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David Mitchell (Cloud Atlas)
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Truth is singular. Its 'versions' are mistruths.
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David Mitchell (Cloud Atlas)
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Keeping your body healthy is an expression of gratitude to the whole cosmos β€” the trees, the clouds, everything.
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Thich Nhat Hanh (Touching Peace: Practicing the Art of Mindful Living (Being Peace, #2))
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For a second I was almost jealous of the clouds. Why was he looking to them for an escape when I was right here beside him?
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Kamila Shamsie (Kartography)
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Our revels now are ended. These our actors, As I foretold you, were all spirits and Are melted into air, into thin air: And, like the baseless fabric of this vision, The cloud-capp’d towers, the gorgeous palaces, The solemn temples, the great globe itself, Yea, all which it inherit, shall dissolve And, like this insubstantial pageant faded, Leave not a rack behind. We are such stuff As dreams are made on, and our little life Is rounded with a sleep.
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William Shakespeare (The Tempest)
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We are only what we know, and I wished to be so much more than I was, sorely.
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David Mitchell (Cloud Atlas)
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And there it is, against all hope, like the sun peeking out from behind the clouds. The smallest hint of a smile.
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Amie Kaufman (These Broken Stars (Starbound, #1))
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For one moment we are not failed tests and broken condoms and cheating on essays; we are crayons and lunch boxes and swinging so high our sneakers punch holes in the clouds.
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Laurie Halse Anderson (Wintergirls)
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This is how I would die into the love I have for you: As pieces of cloud dissolve in sunlight.
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Rumi
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It was many and many a year ago, In a kingdom by the sea, That a maiden there lived whom you may know By the name of ANNABEL LEE; And this maiden she lived with no other thought Than to love and be loved by me. I was a child and she was a child, In this kingdom by the sea; But we loved with a love that was more than love- I and my Annabel Lee; With a love that the winged seraphs of heaven Coveted her and me. And this was the reason that, long ago, In this kingdom by the sea, A wind blew out of a cloud, chilling My beautiful Annabel Lee; So that her highborn kinsman came And bore her away from me, To shut her up in a sepulchre In this kingdom by the sea. The angels, not half so happy in heaven, Went envying her and me- Yes!- that was the reason (as all men know, In this kingdom by the sea) That the wind came out of the cloud by night, Chilling and killing my Annabel Lee. But our love it was stronger by far than the love Of those who were older than we- Of many far wiser than we- And neither the angels in heaven above, Nor the demons down under the sea, Can ever dissever my soul from the soul Of the beautiful Annabel Lee. For the moon never beams without bringing me dreams Of the beautiful Annabel Lee; And the stars never rise but I feel the bright eyes Of the beautiful Annabel Lee; And so, all the night-tide, I lie down by the side Of my darling- my darling- my life and my bride, In the sepulchre there by the sea, In her tomb by the sounding sea.
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Edgar Allan Poe
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I felt like lying down by the side of the trail and remembering it all. The woods do that to you, they always look familiar, long lost, like the face of a long-dead relative, like an old dream, like a piece of forgotten song drifting across the water, most of all like golden eternities of past childhood or past manhood and all the living and the dying and the heartbreak that went on a million years ago and the clouds as they pass overhead seem to testify (by their own lonesome familiarity) to this feeling.
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Jack Kerouac (The Dharma Bums)
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I have been feeling very clearheaded lately and what I want to write about today is the sea. It contains so many colors. Silver at dawn, green at noon, dark blue in the evening. Sometimes it looks almost red. Or it will turn the color of old coins. Right now the shadows of clouds are dragging across it, and patches of sunlight are touching down everywhere. White strings of gulls drag over it like beads. It is my favorite thing, I think, that I have ever seen. Sometimes I catch myself staring at it and forget my duties. It seems big enough to contain everything anyone could ever feel.
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Anthony Doerr (All the Light We Cannot See)
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All shadows of clouds the sun cannot hide like the moon cannot stop oceanic tide; but a hidden star can still be smiling at night's black spell on darkness, beguiling
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Munia Khan
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The Bible did not arrive by fax from heaven. The Bible is the product of man, my dear. Not of God. The Bible did not fall magically from the clouds. Man created it as a historical record of tumultuous times, and it has evolved through countless translations, additions, and revisions. History has never had a definitive version of the book.
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Dan Brown (The Da Vinci Code (Robert Langdon, #2))
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All Birds find shelter during a rain. But Eagle avoids rain by flying above the Clouds. Problems are common, but attitude makes the difference!!!
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A.P.J. Abdul Kalam
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We looked at each other for the last time; nothing is as eloquent as nothing.
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David Mitchell (Cloud Atlas)
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She soared above the ground, and he kept her tethered to the earth. Without him she would be lost among the clouds.
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Cassandra Clare (Lady Midnight (The Dark Artifices, #1))
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I believe death is only a door. One closes, and another opens. If I were to imagine heaven, I would imagine a door opening. And he would be waiting for me there.
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David Mitchell (Cloud Atlas)
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But the cloud never comes in that quarter of the horizon from which we watch for it.
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Elizabeth Gaskell (North and South)
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There, peeping among the cloud-wrack above a dark tor high up in the mountains, Sam saw a white star twinkle for a while. The beauty of it smote his heart, as he looked up out of the forsaken land, and hope returned to him. For like a shaft, clear and cold, the thought pierced him that in the end the Shadow was only a small and passing thing: there was light and high beauty for ever beyond its reach.
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J.R.R. Tolkien (The Return of the King (The Lord of the Rings, #3))
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I painted stars and the moon and clouds and just endless, dark sky.” I finished the sixth, and was well on my way sawing through the seventh before I said, β€œI never knew why. I rarely went outside at nightβ€”usually, I was so tired from hunting that I just wanted to sleep. But I wonder … ” I pulled out the seventh and final arrow. β€œI wonder if some part of me knew what was waiting for me. That I would never be a gentle grower of things, or someone who burned like fireβ€”but that I would be quiet and enduring and as faceted as the night. That I would have beauty, for those who knew where to look, and if people didn’t bother to look, but to only fear it … Then I didn’t particularly care for them, anyway. I wonder if, even in my despair and hopelessness, I was never truly alone. I wonder if I was looking for this placeβ€”looking for you all.
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Sarah J. Maas (A Court of Mist and Fury (A Court of Thorns and Roses, #2))
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God writes the gospel not in the Bible alone, but on trees and flowers and clouds and stars.
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Martin Luther
β€œ
the stars began to burn through the sheets of clouds, and there was a new voice which you slowly recognized as your own
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Mary Oliver
β€œ
Always forgive, but never forget, else you will be a prisoner of your own hatred, and doomed to repeat your mistakes forever.
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Wil Zeus (Sun Beyond the Clouds)
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Roads Go Ever On Roads go ever ever on, Over rock and under tree, By caves where never sun has shone, By streams that never find the sea; Over snow by winter sown, And through the merry flowers of June, Over grass and over stone, And under mountains in the moon. Roads go ever ever on, Under cloud and under star. Yet feet that wandering have gone Turn at last to home afar. Eyes that fire and sword have seen, And horror in the halls of stone Look at last on meadows green, And trees and hills they long have known. The Road goes ever on and on Down from the door where it began. Now far ahead the Road has gone, And I must follow, if I can, Pursuing it with eager feet, Until it joins some larger way, Where many paths and errands meet. The Road goes ever on and on Down from the door where it began. Now far ahead the Road has gone, And I must follow, if I can, Pursuing it with weary feet, Until it joins some larger way, Where many paths and errands meet. And whither then? I cannot say. The Road goes ever on and on Out from the door where it began. Now far ahead the Road has gone. Let others follow, if they can! Let them a journey new begin. But I at last with weary feet Will turn towards the lighted inn, My evening-rest and sleep to meet.
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J.R.R. Tolkien (The Lord of the Rings)
β€œ
I am terrified by this dark thing That sleeps in me; All day I feel its soft, feathery turnings, its malignity. Clouds pass and disperse. Are those the faces of love, those pale irretrievables? Is it for such I agitate my heart? I am incapable of more knowledge. What is this, this face So murderous in its strangle of branches? - Its snaky acids kiss. It petrifies the will. These are the isolate, slow faults That kill, that kill, that kill. From the poem "Elm", 19 April 1962
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Sylvia Plath (The Collected Poems)
β€œ
This is my wish for you: Comfort on difficult days, smiles when sadness intrudes, rainbows to follow the clouds, laughter to kiss your lips, sunsets to warm your heart, hugs when spirits sag, beauty for your eyes to see, friendships to brighten your being, faith so that you can believe, confidence for when you doubt, courage to know yourself, patience to accept the truth, Love to complete your life.
”
”
Ralph Waldo Emerson
β€œ
You may not control all the events that happen to you, but you can decide not to be reduced by them. Try to be a rainbow in someone's cloud. Do not complain. Make every effort to change things you do not like. If you cannot make a change, change the way you have been thinking. You might find a new solution.
”
”
Maya Angelou (Letter to My Daughter)
β€œ
People pontificate, "Suicide is selfishness." Career churchmen like Pater go a step further and call in a cowardly assault on the living. Oafs argue this specious line for varying reason: to evade fingers of blame, to impress one's audience with one's mental fiber, to vent anger, or just because one lacks the necessary suffering to sympathize. Cowardice is nothing to do with it - suicide takes considerable courage. Japanese have the right idea. No, what's selfish is to demand another to endure an intolerable existence, just to spare families, friends, and enemies a bit of soul-searching.
”
”
David Mitchell (Cloud Atlas)
β€œ
It is the way of weakened minds to see everything through a black cloud. The soul forms its own horizons; your soul is darkened, and consequently the sky of the future appears stormy and unpromising
”
”
Alexandre Dumas (The Count of Monte Cristo)
β€œ
I see at intervals the glance of a curious sort of bird through the close set bars of a cage: a vivid, restless, resolute captive is there; were it but free, it would soar cloud-high.
”
”
Charlotte BrontΓ« (Jane Eyre)
β€œ
Time is what stops history happening at once; time is the speed at which the past disappears.
”
”
David Mitchell (Cloud Atlas)
β€œ
The Poet is a kinsman in the clouds Who scoffs at archers, loves a stormy day; But on the ground, among the hooting crowds, He cannot walk, his wings are in the way.
”
”
Charles Baudelaire (Les Fleurs Du Mal)
β€œ
I know that I shall meet my fate somewhere among the clouds above; those that I fight I do not hate, those that I guard I do not love.
”
”
W.B. Yeats
β€œ
We change our behavior when the pain of staying the same becomes greater than the pain of changing. Consequences give us the pain that motivates us to change.
”
”
Henry Cloud
β€œ
So fine was the morning except for a streak of wind here and there that the sea and sky looked all one fabric, as if sails were stuck high up in the sky, or the clouds had dropped down into the sea.
”
”
Virginia Woolf (To the Lighthouse)
β€œ
I stood willingly and gladly in the characters of everything - other people, trees, clouds. And this is what I learned, that the world's otherness is antidote to confusion - that standing within this otherness - the beauty and the mystery of the world, out in the fields or deep inside books - can re-dignify the worst-stung heart.
”
”
Mary Oliver
β€œ
Night falls. Or has fallen. Why is it that night falls, instead of rising, like the dawn? Yet if you look east, at sunset, you can see night rising, not falling; darkness lifting into the sky, up from the horizon, like a black sun behind cloud cover. Like smoke from an unseen fire, a line of fire just below the horizon, brushfire or a burning city. Maybe night falls because it’s heavy, a thick curtain pulled up over the eyes. Wool blanket.
”
”
Margaret Atwood (The Handmaid's Tale (The Handmaid's Tale, #1))
β€œ
Shoot for the stars, so if you fall you land on a cloud.
”
”
Kanye West
β€œ
I like eggs and bacon," George tells me. "But" - his face clouds - "do you know that bacon is" - tears leap to his eyes - "Wilbur?
”
”
Huntley Fitzpatrick (My Life Next Door)
β€œ
I am a flawed person. A brook with many stones, a clear blue sky with many blackbirds. I have many shortcomings. A rainbow that’s not long enough, a starry night with clouds. But I can only be thankful to the God who loves me just this way, and I can only be grateful to the people in my life who accept the clear blue sky with many blackbirds and who are patient with the rainbow that isn’t long enough. And because of this, I am taught love, because of this I love my God, and I love these people.
”
”
C. JoyBell C.
β€œ
Be thou the rainbow in the storms of life. The evening beam that smiles the clouds away, and tints tomorrow with prophetic ray.
”
”
Lord Byron
β€œ
We love the night and its quiet; and there is no night that we love so well as that on which the moon is coffined in clouds.
”
”
Fitz-James O'Brien (Classic Ghost Stories by Wilkie Collins, M.R. James, Charles Dickens and Others)
β€œ
You say, it's dark. And in truth, I did place a cloud before your sun. But do you not see how the edges of the cloud are already glowing and turning light.
”
”
Friedrich Nietzsche
β€œ
The sun always shines above the clouds.
”
”
Paul F. Davis
β€œ
The richness of the rain made me feel safe and protected; I have always considered the rain to be healingβ€”a blanketβ€”the comfort of a friend. Without at least some rain in any given day, or at least a cloud or two on the horizon, I feel overwhelmed by the information of sunlight and yearn for the vital, muffling gift of falling water.
”
”
Douglas Coupland (Life After God)
β€œ
Out of my thoughts! You are part of my existence, part of myself. You have been in every line I have ever read, since I first came here, the rough common boy whose poor heart you wounded even then. You have been in every prospect I have ever seen since – on the river, on the sails of the ships, on the marshes, in the clouds, in the light, in the darkness, in the wind, in the woods, in the sea, in the streets. You have been the embodiment of every graceful fancy that my mind has ever become acquainted with. The stones of which the strongest London buildings are made, are not more real, or more impossible to displace with your hands, than your presence and influence have been to me, there and everywhere, and will be. Estella, to the last hour of my life, you cannot choose but remain part of my character, part of the little good in me, part of the evil. But, in this separation I associate you only with the good, and I will faithfully hold you to that always, for you must have done me far more good than harm, let me feel now what sharp distress I may. O God bless you, God forgive you!
”
”
Charles Dickens (Great Expectations)
β€œ
Joy, sorrow, tears, lamentation, laughter -- to all these music gives voice, but in such a way that we are transported from the world of unrest to a world of peace, and see reality in a new way, as if we were sitting by a mountain lake and contemplating hills and woods and clouds in the tranquil and fathomless water.
”
”
Albert Schweitzer
β€œ
What is any ocean but a multitude of drops?
”
”
David Mitchell (Cloud Atlas)
β€œ
Nico scowled. β€˜It’s none of your business, but I don’t belong. That’s obvious. No one wants me. I’m a child of –’ β€˜Oh, please.’ Will sounded unusually angry. β€˜Nobody at Camp Half-Blood ever pushed you away. You have friends – or at least people who would like to be your friend. You pushed yourself away. If you’d get your head out of that brooding cloud of yours for once –
”
”
Rick Riordan (The Blood of Olympus (The Heroes of Olympus, #5))
β€œ
Rain makes me feel less alone. All rain is, is a cloud- falling apart, and pouring its shattered pieces down on top of you. It makes me feel good to know I'm not the only thing that falls apart . It makes me feel better to know other things in nature can shatter.
”
”
Lone Alaskan Gypsy
β€œ
One of the strangest things about life is that it will chug on, blind and oblivious, even as your private world - your little carved-out sphere - is twisting and morphing, even breaking apart. One day you have parents; the next day you're an orphan. One day you have a place and a path. The next day you're lost in the wilderness. And still the sun rises and clouds mass and drift and people shop for groceries and toilets flush and blinds go up and down. That's when you realize that most of it - life, the relentless mechanism of existing - isn't about you. It doesn't include you at all. It will thrust onward even after you've jumped the edge. Even after you're dead.
”
”
Lauren Oliver (Delirium (Delirium, #1))
β€œ
You were my tempest, my thunder cloud, my tree in the downpour. I loved all those things, and I loved you. But now? You’re a fucking drought. I thought that all the assholes drove German cars, but it turns out that pricks in Mustangs can still leave scars.
”
”
Penelope Douglas (Bully (Fall Away, #1))
β€œ
They loved each other, not driven by necessity, by the "blaze of passion" often falsely ascribed to love. They loved each other because everything around them willed it, the trees and the clouds and the sky over their heads and the earth under their feet.
”
”
Boris Pasternak (Doctor Zhivago)
β€œ
Cress?" "It's beautiful out there." A hesitation, before, "Could you be more specific?" "The sky is gorgeous, intense blue color." She pressed her fingers to the glass and traced the wavy hills on the horizon. "Oh, good. You've really narrowed it down for me." "I'm sorry, it's just..." She tried to stamp down the rush of emotion. "I think we're in a desert." "Cactuses and tumbleweeds?" "No just a lot of sand. It's kind of orangish-gold, with hints of pink, and I can see tiny clouds of it floating above the ground, like...like smoke." "Piles up in lots of hills?" "Yes, exactly! And it's beautiful." Thorne snorted. "If this is how you feel about a desert, I can't wait until you see your first real tree. Your mind will explode.
”
”
Marissa Meyer (Cress (The Lunar Chronicles, #3))
β€œ
I Wandered Lonely as a Cloud I wandered lonely as a cloud That floats on high o'er vales and hills, When all at once I saw a crowd, A host, of golden daffodils; Beside the lake, beneath the trees, Fluttering and dancing in the breeze. Continuous as the stars that shine And twinkle on the milky way, They stretched in never-ending line Along the margin of a bay: Ten thousand saw I at a glance, Tossing their heads in sprightly dance. The waves beside them danced; but they Out-did the sparkling waves in glee: A poet could not but be gay, In such a jocund company: I gazed--and gazed--but little thought What wealth the show to me had brought: For oft, when on my couch I lie In vacant or in pensive mood, They flash upon that inward eye Which is the bliss of solitude; And then my heart with pleasure fills, And dances with the daffodils.
”
”
William Wordsworth (I Wander'd Lonely as a Cloud)
β€œ
Adam strokes my head, my face, he kisses my tears. We are blessed. Let them all go. The sound of a bird flying low across the garden. Then nothing. Nothing. A cloud passes. Nothing again. Light falls through the window, falls onto me, into me. Moments. All gathering towards this one.
”
”
Jenny Downham (Before I Die)
β€œ
...now I'm a spent firework; but at least I've been a firework.
”
”
David Mitchell (Cloud Atlas)
β€œ
God uses broken things. It takes broken soil to produce a crop, broken clouds to give rain, broken grain to give bread, broken bread to give strength. It is the broken alabaster box that gives forth perfume. It is Peter, weeping bitterly, who returns to greater power than ever.
”
”
Vance Havner
β€œ
Shall I tell you the secret of the whole world? It is that we have only known the back of the world. We see everything from behind, and it looks brutal. That is not a tree, but the back of a tree. That is not a cloud, but the back of a cloud. Cannot you see that everything is stooping and hiding a face? If we could only get round in front--
”
”
G.K. Chesterton (The Man Who Was Thursday)
β€œ
. . .my dreams are the single unpredictable factor in my zoned days and nights. Nobody allots them, or censors them. Dreams are all I have ever truly owned.
”
”
David Mitchell (Cloud Atlas)
β€œ
In an individual, selfishness uglifies the soul; for the human species, selfishness is extinction.
”
”
David Mitchell (Cloud Atlas)
β€œ
Be not afeard; the isle is full of noises, Sounds, and sweet airs, that give delight and hurt not. Sometimes a thousand twangling instruments Will hum about mine ears; and sometime voices, That, if I then had waked after long sleep, Will make me sleep again: and then, in dreaming, The clouds methought would open, and show riches Ready to drop upon me; that, when I waked, I cried to dream again.
”
”
William Shakespeare (The Tempest)
β€œ
But I've never even been to Olympus! Zeus is crazy!" Chiron and Grover glanced nervously at the sky. The clouds didn't seem to be parting around us, as Grover had promised. They were rolling straight over our valley, sealing us in like a coffin lid. Er, Percy ...?" Grover said. "We don't use the c-word to describe the Lord of the Sky.
”
”
Rick Riordan (The Lightning Thief (Percy Jackson and the Olympians, #1))
β€œ
A kiss about apple pie a la mode with the vanilla creaminess melting in the pie heat. A kiss about chocolate, when you haven't eaten chocolate in a year. A kiss about palm trees speeding by, trailing pink clouds when you drive down the Strip sizzling with champagne. A kiss about spotlights fanning the sky and the swollen sea spilling like tears all over your legs.
”
”
Francesca Lia Block
β€œ
Why am I so drawn to you?" He muttered, almost to himself. "Why is it so hard to let go? I thought... at first... it was Ariella, that you remind me of so much. But it's not." Though he didn't smile, his eyes lightened a shade. "You're far more stubborn than she ever was." I sniffed. "That's like the pot calling the kettle black," I whispered, and a faint, tiny grin finally crossed his face, before his expression clouded and he lowered his head, touching his forehead to mine. "What do you want of me, Meghan?" he asked, a low thread of anguish flickering below the surface. Tears blurred my vision, all the fear and heartache of the past few days rising to the surface. "Just you," I whispered. "I just want you." -Ash and Meghan
”
”
Julie Kagawa (The Iron Daughter (The Iron Fey, #2))
β€œ
And see those clouds?' 'Hard to miss' 'Those are cumulus clouds. Did you know that?' 'I'm sure I should.' They're the best ones.' 'How come?' Because they look the way clouds are supposed to look, the way you draw them when you're a kid. Which is nice, you know? ...
”
”
Jennifer E. Smith (The Statistical Probability of Love at First Sight)
β€œ
A large drop of sun lingered on the horizon and then dripped over and was gone, and the sky was brilliant over the spot where it had gone, and a torn cloud, like a bloody rag, hung over the spot of its going. And dusk crept over the sky from the eastern horizon, and darkness crept over the land from the east.
”
”
John Steinbeck (The Grapes of Wrath)
β€œ
The smile that flickers on a baby’s lips when he sleeps- does anyone know where it was born? Yes, there is a rumor that a young pale beam of a crescent moon touched the edge of a vanishing autumn cloud, and there the smile was first born in the dream of a dew-washed morning.
”
”
Rabindranath Tagore
β€œ
Whoever opined "Money can't buy you happiness" obviously had far too much of the stuff.
”
”
David Mitchell (Cloud Atlas)
β€œ
And as he drove on, the rainclouds dragged down the sky after him, for, though he did not know it, Rob McKenna was a Rain God. All he knew was that his working days were miserable and he had a succession of lousy holidays. All the clouds knew was that they loved him and wanted to be near him, to cherish him, and to water him.
”
”
Douglas Adams (So Long, and Thanks for All the Fish (Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy, #4))
β€œ
I understand now that boundaries between noise and sound are conventions. All boundaries are conventions, waiting to be transcended. One may transcend any convention if only one can first conceive of doing so.
”
”
David Mitchell (Cloud Atlas)
β€œ
The better organized the state, the duller its humanity.
”
”
David Mitchell (Cloud Atlas)
β€œ
I have lots of things to teach you now, in case we ever meet, concerning the message that was transmitted to me under a pine tree in North Carolina on a cold winter moonlit night. It said that Nothing Ever Happened, so don't worry. It's all like a dream. Everything is ecstasy, inside. We just don't know it because of our thinking-minds. But in our true blissful essence of mind is known that everything is alright forever and forever and forever. Close your eyes, let your hands and nerve-ends drop, stop breathing for 3 seconds, listen to the silence inside the illusion of the world, and you will remember the lesson you forgot, which was taught in immense milky way soft cloud innumerable worlds long ago and not even at all. It is all one vast awakened thing. I call it the golden eternity. It is perfect. We were never really born, we will never really die. It has nothing to do with the imaginary idea of a personal self, other selves, many selves everywhere: Self is only an idea, a mortal idea. That which passes into everything is one thing. It's a dream already ended. There's nothing to be afraid of and nothing to be glad about. I know this from staring at mountains months on end. They never show any expression, they are like empty space. Do you think the emptiness of space will ever crumble away? Mountains will crumble, but the emptiness of space, which is the one universal essence of mind, the vast awakenerhood, empty and awake, will never crumble away because it was never born.
”
”
Jack Kerouac (The Portable Jack Kerouac)
β€œ
I knew Noah worshipped Charlie Parker and that his toothbrush was green. That he wouldn't bother to button his shirts correctly but always made his bed. That when he slept he curled into himself and that his eyes were the color of the clouds before it rained, and I knew he had no problem eating meat but would subtly leave the room if animals started to kill one another on the Discovery Channel. I knew one hundred little things about Noah Shaw but when he kissed me I couldn't remember my own name.
”
”
Michelle Hodkin
β€œ
I will love you as a thief loves a gallery and as a crow loves a murder, as a cloud loves bats and as a range loves braes. I will love you as misfortune loves orphans, as fire loves innocence and as justice loves to sit and watch while everything goes wrong. I will love you as a battlefield loves young men and as peppermints love your allergies, and I will love you as the banana peel loves the shoe of a man who was just struck by a shingle falling off a house. I will love you as a volunteer fire department loves rushing into burning buildings and as burning buildings love to chase them back out, and as a parachute loves to leave a blimp and as a blimp operator loves to chase after it. I will love you as a dagger loves a certain person’s back, and as a certain person loves to wear dagger proof tunics, and as a dagger proof tunic loves to go to a certain dry cleaning facility, and how a certain employee of a dry cleaning facility loves to stay up late with a pair of binoculars, watching a dagger factory for hours in the hopes of catching a burglar, and as a burglar loves sneaking up behind people with binoculars, suddenly realizing that she has left her dagger at home. I will love you as a drawer loves a secret compartment, and as a secret compartment loves a secret, and as a secret loves to make a person gasp, and as a gasping person loves a glass of brandy to calm their nerves, and as a glass of brandy loves to shatter on the floor, and as the noise of glass shattering loves to make someone else gasp, and as someone else gasping loves a nearby desk to lean against, even if leaning against it presses a lever that loves to open a drawer and reveal a secret compartment. I will love you until all such compartments are discovered and opened, and until all the secrets have gone gasping into the world. I will love you until all the codes and hearts have been broken and until every anagram and egg has been unscrambled. I will love you until every fire is extinguised and until every home is rebuilt from the handsomest and most susceptible of woods, and until every criminal is handcuffed by the laziest of policemen. I will love until M. hates snakes and J. hates grammar, and I will love you until C. realizes S. is not worthy of his love and N. realizes he is not worthy of the V. I will love you until the bird hates a nest and the worm hates an apple, and until the apple hates a tree and the tree hates a nest, and until a bird hates a tree and an apple hates a nest, although honestly I cannot imagine that last occurrence no matter how hard I try. I will love you as we grow older, which has just happened, and has happened again, and happened several days ago, continuously, and then several years before that, and will continue to happen as the spinning hands of every clock and the flipping pages of every calendar mark the passage of time, except for the clocks that people have forgotten to wind and the calendars that people have forgotten to place in a highly visible area. I will love you as we find ourselves farther and farther from one another, where we once we were so close that we could slip the curved straw, and the long, slender spoon, between our lips and fingers respectively. I will love you until the chances of us running into one another slip from slim to zero, and until your face is fogged by distant memory, and your memory faced by distant fog, and your fog memorized by a distant face, and your distance distanced by the memorized memory of a foggy fog. I will love you no matter where you go and who you see, no matter where you avoid and who you don’t see, and no matter who sees you avoiding where you go. I will love you no matter what happens to you, and no matter how I discover what happens to you, and no matter what happens to me as I discover this, and now matter how I am discovered after what happens to me as I am discovering this.
”
”
Lemony Snicket
β€œ
In my arms is a woman who has given me a Skywatcher's Cloud Chart, a woman who knows all my secrets, a woman who knows just how messed up my mind is, how many pills I'm on, and yet she allows me to hold her anyway. There's something honest about all this, and I cannot imagine any other woman lying in the middle of a frozen soccer field with me - in the middle of a snowstorm even - impossibly hoping to see a single cloud break free of a nimbostratus.
”
”
Matthew Quick (The Silver Linings Playbook)
β€œ
One fine day a predatory world shall consume itself.
”
”
David Mitchell (Cloud Atlas)
β€œ
The sun was shining on the sea, Shining with all his might: He did his very best to make The billows smooth and bright -- And this was odd, because it was The middle of the night. The moon was shining sulkily, Because she thought the sun Had got no business to be there After the day was done -- "It's very rude of him," she said, "To come and spoil the fun!" The sea was wet as wet could be, The sands were dry as dry. You could not see a cloud, because No cloud was in the sky: No birds were flying overhead -- There were no birds to fly. In a Wonderland they lie Dreaming as the days go by, Dreaming as the summer die.
”
”
Lewis Carroll (Alice in Wonderland)
β€œ
I’ve never been angry to have been born a woman. There have been times I’ve been angry at how the world treats us, but I see being a woman as a challenge I must fight. Like being born under a stormy sky. Some people are lucky enough to be born on a bright summer’s day. Maybe we were born under clouds. No wind. No rain. Just a mountain of clouds we must climb each morning so that we may see the sun.
”
”
RenΓ©e Ahdieh (Flame in the Mist (Flame in the Mist, #1))
β€œ
Mariam lay on the couch, hands tucked between her knees, watched the whirlpool of snow twisting and spinning outside the window. She remembered Nana saying once that each snowflake was a sigh heaved by an aggrieved woman somewhere in the world. That all the sighs drifted up the sky, gathered into clouds, then broke into tiny pieces that fell silently on the people below. As a reminder of how people like us suffer, she'd said. How quietly we endure all that falls upon us.
”
”
Khaled Hosseini (A Thousand Splendid Suns)
β€œ
& only as you gasp your dying breath shall you understand, your life amounted to no more than one drop in a limitless ocean! Yet what is any ocean but a multitude of drops?
”
”
David Mitchell (Cloud Atlas)
β€œ
who knows if the moon's a balloon,coming out of a keen city in the sky--filled with pretty people? ( and if you and I should get into it,if they should take me and take you into their balloon, why then we'd go up higher with all the pretty people than houses and steeples and clouds: go sailing away and away sailing into a keen city which nobody's ever visited,where always it's Spring)and everyone's in love and flowers pick themselves
”
”
E.E. Cummings (Collected Poems)
β€œ
History admits no rules; only outcomes.
”
”
David Mitchell (Cloud Atlas)
β€œ
From childhood's hour I have not been As others were; I have not seen As others saw; I could not bring My passions from a common spring. From the same source I have not taken My sorrow; I could not awaken My heart to joy at the same tone; And all I loved, I loved alone. Then- in my childhood, in the dawn Of a most stormy life- was drawn From every depth of good and ill The mystery which binds me still: From the torrent, or the fountain, From the red cliff of the mountain, From the sun that round me rolled In its autumn tint of gold, From the lightning in the sky As it passed me flying by, From the thunder and the storm, And the cloud that took the form (When the rest of Heaven was blue) Of a demon in my view.
”
”
Edgar Allan Poe (Alone)
β€œ
Benedicto: May your trails be crooked, winding, lonesome, dangerous, leading to the most amazing view. May your mountains rise into and above the clouds. May your rivers flow without end, meandering through pastoral valleys tinkling with bells, past temples and castles and poets towers into a dark primeval forest where tigers belch and monkeys howl, through miasmal and mysterious swamps and down into a desert of red rock, blue mesas, domes and pinnacles and grottos of endless stone, and down again into a deep vast ancient unknown chasm where bars of sunlight blaze on profiled cliffs, where deer walk across the white sand beaches, where storms come and go as lightning clangs upon the high crags, where something strange and more beautiful and more full of wonder than your deepest dreams waits for you -- beyond that next turning of the canyon walls.
”
”
Edward Abbey
β€œ
I look up at the sky, wondering if I'll catch a glimpse of kindness there, but I don't. All I see are indifferent summer clouds drifting over the Pacific. And they have nothing to say to me. Clouds are always taciturn. I probably shouldn't be looking up at them. What I should be looking at is inside of me. Like staring down into a deep well. Can I see kindness there? No, all I see is my own nature. My own individual, stubborn, uncooperative often self-centered nature that still doubts itself--that, when troubles occur, tries to find something funny, or something nearly funny, about the situation. I've carried this character around like an old suitcase, down a long, dusty path. I'm not carrying it because I like it. The contents are too heavy, and it looks crummy, fraying in spots. I've carried it with me because there was nothing else I was supposed to carry. Still, I guess I have grown attached to it. As you might expect.
”
”
Haruki Murakami (What I Talk About When I Talk About Running)
β€œ
How sweet the morning air is! See how that one little cloud floats like a pink feather from some gigantic flamingo. Now the red rim of the sun pushes itself over the London cloud-bank. It shines on a good many folk, but on none, I dare bet, who are on a stranger errand than you and I. How small we feel with our petty ambitions and strivings in the presence of the great elemental forces of Nature!
”
”
Arthur Conan Doyle (Sherlock Holmes: The Complete Novels and Stories, Volume I)
β€œ
What I am really saying is that you don’t need to do anything, because if you see yourself in the correct way, you are all as much extraordinary phenomenon of nature as trees, clouds, the patterns in running water, the flickering of fire, the arrangement of the stars, and the form of a galaxy. You are all just like that, and there is nothing wrong with you at all.
”
”
Alan W. Watts
β€œ
She stared at the castle unflinchingly, her form silhouetted against the blazing brightness that sat on the edge of the Avery River. Clouds gathered above them and she raised her head. Through a clearing in the swirling mass, a cluster of stars could be seen. He couldn't help thinking that they gazed down at her... The image haunted his dreams throughout the night: a lovely girl gazing at the stars, and the stars who gazed back
”
”
Sarah J. Maas (Throne of Glass (Throne of Glass, #1))
β€œ
I let my head fall back, and I gazed into the Eternal Blue Sky. It was morning. Some of the sky was yellow, some the softest blue. One small cloud scuttled along. Strange how everything below can be such death and chaos and pain while above the sky is peace, sweet blue gentleness. I heard a shaman say once, the Ancestors want our souls to be like the blue sky.
”
”
Shannon Hale (Book of a Thousand Days)
β€œ
Anticipating the end of the world is humanity's oldest pastime
”
”
David Mitchell (Cloud Atlas)
β€œ
Remember that you own what happened to you. If your childhood was less than ideal, you may have been raised thinking that if you told the truth about what really went on in your family, a long bony white finger would emerge from a cloud and point to you, while a chilling voice thundered, "We *told* you not to tell." But that was then. Just put down on paper everything you can remember now about your parents and siblings and relatives and neighbors, and we will deal with libel later on.
”
”
Anne Lamott (Bird by Bird: Some Instructions on Writing and Life)
β€œ
- This isn't an interrogation or a trail. Your version of the truth is the only thing that matters. -Truth is singular. It's 'versions' are mistruths.
”
”
David Mitchell (Cloud Atlas)
β€œ
By each crime and every kindness, we birth our future.
”
”
David Mitchell (Cloud Atlas)
β€œ
You know the best thing about aeroplanes? Apart from the peanuts in the little silver bags, I mean. It's looking out of the windows at the clouds, and thinking, maybe I could go walking in there. Maybe it's a special place where everything's okay. Sometimes I do go walking in the clouds, but it's just cold and wet and empty. But when you look out of a plane it's a special world... and I like that.
”
”
Neil Gaiman (Brief Lives (The Sandman, #7))
β€œ
I've lived to bury my desires and see my dreams corrode with rust now all that's left are fruitless fires that burn my empty heart to dust. Struck by the clouds of cruel fate My crown of Summer bloom is sere Alone and sad, I watch and wait And wonder if the end is near. As conquered by the last cold air When Winter whistles in the wind Alone upon a branch that's bare A trembling leaf is left behind.
”
”
Alexander Pushkin
β€œ
WE ALREADY HAVE everything we need. There is no need for self-improvement. All these trips that we lay on ourselvesβ€”the heavy-duty fearing that we’re bad and hoping that we’re good, the identities that we so dearly cling to, the rage, the jealousy and the addictions of all kindsβ€”never touch our basic wealth. They are like clouds that temporarily block the sun. But all the time our warmth and brilliance are right here. This is who we really are. We are one blink of an eye away from being fully awake.
”
”
Pema ChΓΆdrΓΆn (Start Where You Are: A Guide to Compassionate Living)
β€œ
Three or four times only in my youth did I glimpse the Joyous Isles, before they were lost to fogs, depressions, cold fronts, ill winds, and contrary tides... I mistook them for adulthood. Assuming they were a fixed feature in my life's voyage, I neglected to record their latitude, their longitude, their approach. Young ruddy fool. What wouldn't I give now for a never-changing map of the ever-constant ineffable? To possess, as it were, an atlas of clouds.
”
”
David Mitchell (Cloud Atlas)
β€œ
There is more to a boy than what his mother sees. There is more to a boy then what his father dreams. Inside every boy lies a heart that beats. And sometimes it screams, refusing to take defeat. And sometimes his father's dreams aren't big enough, and sometimes his mother's vision isn't long enough. And sometimes the boy has to dream his own dreams and break through the clouds with his own sunbeams.
”
”
Ben Behunin (Remembering Isaac: The Wise and Joyful Potter of Niederbipp (Remembering Isaac, #1))
β€œ
What would you not have accomplished if you had been free?" "Possibly nothing at all; the overflow of my brain would probably, in a state of freedom, have evaporated in a thousand follies; misfortune is needed to bring to light the treasures of the human intellect. Compression is needed to explode gunpowder. Captivity has brought my mental faculties to a focus; and you are well aware that from the collision of clouds electricity is produced β€” from electricity, lightning, from lightning, illumination.
”
”
Alexandre Dumas (The Count of Monte Cristo)
β€œ
Suddenly, all I can think about are all the things I don't know about him. All the things I never had time to learn. I don't know if his feet are ticklish or how long his toes are. I don't know what nightmares he had as a child. I don't know which stars are his favorites, what shapes he sees in the clouds. I don't know what he is truly afraid of or what memories he holds closest. And I don't have enough time now, never enough time. I want to be in the moment with him, feel his body against mine and think of nothing else, but my mind explodes with grief for all that I am missing. All that I will miss. All that I have wasted.
”
”
Carrie Ryan (The Forest of Hands and Teeth (The Forest of Hands and Teeth, #1))
β€œ
Oh, Will," she said, "What can we do? Whatever can we do? I want to live with you forever. I want to kiss you and lie down with you and wake up with you every day of my life till I die, years and years and years away. I don't want a memory, just a memory..." "No," he said. "Memory's a poor thing to have. It's your own real hair and mouth and arms and eyes and hands I want. I didn't know I could ever love anything so much. Oh, Lyra, I wish this night would never end! If only we could stay here like this, and the world could stop turning, and everyone else could fall into a sleep..." "Everyone except us! And you and I could live here forever and just love each other." "I will love you forever; whatever happens. Till I die and after I die, and when I find my way out of the land of the dead, I'll drift about forever, all my atoms, till I find you again..." "I'll be looking for you, Will, every moment, every single moment. And when we do find each other again, we'll cling together so tight that nothing and no one'll ever tear us apart. Every atom of me and every atom of you...We'll live in birds and flowers and dragonflies and pin trees and in clouds and in those little specks of light you see floating in sunbeams...And when they use our atoms to make new lives, they won't just be able to take one, they'll have to take two, one of you and one of me, we'll be joined so tight..." They lay side by side, hand in hand, looking at the sky.
”
”
Philip Pullman (The Amber Spyglass)
β€œ
You are part of my existence, part of myself. You have been in every line I have ever read, since I first came here, the rough common boy whose poor heart you wounded even then. You have been in every prospect I have ever seen since-on the river, on the sails of the ships, on the marshes, in the clouds, in the light, in the darkness, in the wind, in the woods, in the sea, in the streets. You have been the embodiment of every graceful fancy that my mind has ever become acquainted with.
”
”
Charles Dickens (Great Expectations)
β€œ
For, after all, every one who wishes to gain true knowledge must climb the Hill Difficulty alone, and since there is no royal road to the summit, I must zigzag it in my own way. I slip back many times, I fall, I stand still, I run against the edge of hidden obstacles, I lose my temper and find it again and keep it better, I trudge on, I gain a little, I feel encouraged, I get more eager and climb higher and begin to see the widening horizon. Every struggle is a victory. One more effort and I reach the luminous cloud, the blue depths of the sky, the uplands of my desire.
”
”
Helen Keller (The Story of My Life)
β€œ
The moon will never lie to anyone. Be like the moon. No one hates the moon or wants to kill it. The moon does not take antidepressants and never gets sent to prison. The moon never shot a guy in the face and ran away. The moon has been around a long time and has never tried to rip anyone off. The moon does not care who you want to touch or what color you are. The moon treats everyone the same. The moon never tries to get in on the guest list or use your name to impress others. Be like the moon. When others insult or belittle in an attempt to elevate themselves, the moon sits passively and watches, never lowering itself to anything that weak. The moon is beautiful and bright. It needs no makeup to look beautiful. The moon never shoves clouds out of its way so it can be seen. The moon needs not fame or money to be powerful. The moon never asks you to go to war to defend it. Be like the moon.
”
”
Henry Rollins (Solipsist)
β€œ
The advice I like to give young artists, or really anybody who'll listen to me, is not to wait around for inspiration. Inspiration is for amateurs; the rest of us just show up and get to work. If you wait around for the clouds to part and a bolt of lightning to strike you in the brain, you are not going to make an awful lot of work. All the best ideas come out of the process; they come out of the work itself. Things occur to you. If you're sitting around trying to dream up a great art idea, you can sit there a long time before anything happens. But if you just get to work, something will occur to you and something else will occur to you and something else that you reject will push you in another direction. Inspiration is absolutely unnecessary and somehow deceptive. You feel like you need this great idea before you can get down to work, and I find that's almost never the case.
”
”
Chuck Close
β€œ
I suffered no pain, my hunger had taken the edge off; instead I felt pleasantly empty, untouched by everything around me and happy to be unseen by all. I put my legs up on the bench and leaned back, the best way to feel the true well-being of seclusion. There wasn't a cloud in my mind, nor did I feel any discomfort, and I hadn't a single unfulfilled desire or craving as far as my thought could reach. I lay with open eyes in a state of utter absence from myself and felt deliciously out of it.
”
”
Knut Hamsun (Hunger)
β€œ
I like storms. Thunder torrential rain, puddles, wet shoes. When the clouds roll in, I get filled with this giddy expectation. Everything is more beautiful in the rain. Don't ask me why. But it’s like this whole other realm of opportunity. I used to feel like a superhero, riding my bike over the dangerously slick roads, or maybe an Olympic athlete enduring rough trials to make it to the finish line. On sunny days, as a girl, I could still wake up to that thrilled feeling. You made me giddy with expectation, just like a symphonic rainstorm. You were a tempest in the sun, the thunder in a boring, cloudless sky. I remember I’d shovel in my breakfast as fast as I could, so I could go knock on your door. We’d play all day, only coming back for food and sleep. We played hide and seek, you’d push me on the swing, or we’d climb trees. Being your sidekick gave me a sense of home again. You see, when I was ten, my mom died. She had cancer, and I lost her before I really knew her. My world felt so insecure, and I was scared. You were the person that turned things right again. With you, I became courageous and free. It was like the part of me that died with my mom came back when I met you, and I didn’t hurt if I knew I had you. Then one day, out of the blue, I lost you, too. The hurt returned, and I felt sick when I saw you hating me. My rainstorm was gone, and you became cruel. There was no explanation. You were just gone. And my heart was ripped open. I missed you. I missed my mom. What was worse than losing you, was when you started to hurt me. Your words and actions made me hate coming to school. They made me uncomfortable in my own home. Everything still hurts, but I know none of it is my fault. There are a lot of words that I could use to describe you, but the only one that includes sad, angry, miserable, and pitiful is β€œcoward.” I a year, I’ll be gone, and you’ll be nothing but some washout whose height of existence was in high school. You were my tempest, my thunder cloud, my tree in the downpour. I loved all those things, and I loved you. But now? You’re a fucking drought. I thought that all the assholes drove German cars, but it turns out that pricks in Mustangs can still leave scars.
”
”
Penelope Douglas (Bully (Fall Away, #1))
β€œ
Belief, like fear or love, is a force to be understood as we understand the theory of relativity and principals of uncertainty. Phenomena that determine the course of our lives. Yesterday, my life was headed in one direction. Today, it is headed in another. Yesterday, I believe I would never have done what I did today. These forces that often remake time and space, that can shape and alter who we imagine ourselves to be, begin long before we are born and continue after we perish. Our lives and our choices, like quantum trajectories, are understood moment to moment. That each point of intersection, each encounter, suggest a new potential direction. Proposition, I have fallen in love with Luisa Rey. Is this possible? I just met her and yet, I feel like something important has happened to me.
”
”
David Mitchell (Cloud Atlas)
β€œ
How vulgar, this hankering after immortality, how vain, how false. Composers are merely scribblers of cave paintings. One writes music because winter is eternal and because, if one didn't, the wolves and blizzards would be at one's throat all the sooner.
”
”
David Mitchell (Cloud Atlas)
β€œ
That's death and life, you see. We all shine on. You just have to release your hearts, alert your senses, and pay attention. A leaf, a star, a song, a laugh. Notice all the little things, because somebody is reaching out to you. Qualcuno ti ama. Somebody loves you.
”
”
Ben Sherwood (The Death and Life of Charlie St. Cloud)
β€œ
Every day was like a day out of someone else's life. Nothing had ever happened to me, and now everything was happening to me -- and by everything, I really meant Lena. An hour was both faster and slower. I felt like I had sucked the air out of a giant balloon, like my brain wasn't getting enough oxygen. Clouds were more interesting, the lunchroom less disgusting, music sounded better, the same old jokes were funnier, and Jackson went from being a clump of grayish-green industrial buildings to a map of times and places where I might run into her. I found myself smiling for no reason, keeping my earphones in and replaying our conversations in my head, just so I could listen to them again. I had seen this kind of thing before. I had just never felt it.
”
”
Kami Garcia (Beautiful Creatures (Caster Chronicles, #1))
β€œ
The knowledge that the atoms that comprise life on earth - the atoms that make up the human body, are traceable to the crucibles that cooked light elements into heavy elements in their core under extreme temperatures and pressures. These stars- the high mass ones among them- went unstable in their later years- they collapsed and then exploded- scattering their enriched guts across the galaxy- guts made of carbon, nitrogen, oxygen, and all the fundamental ingredients of life itself. These ingredients become part of gas clouds that condense, collapse, form the next generation of solar systems- stars with orbiting planets. And those planets now have the ingredients for life itself. So that when I look up at the night sky, and I know that yes we are part of this universe, we are in this universe, but perhaps more important than both of those facts is that the universe is in us. When I reflect on that fact, I look up- many people feel small, cause their small and the universe is big. But I feel big because my atoms came from those stars.
”
”
Neil deGrasse Tyson
β€œ
In the first place, his startling likeness to Catherine, connected him fearfully with her. That, however, which you may suppose the most potent to arrest my imagination, is actually the least – for what is not connected with her to me? and what does not recall her? I cannot look down to this floor, but her features are shaped on the flags! In every cloud, in every tree – filling the air at night, and caught by glimpses in every object, by day I am surrounded with her image! The most ordinary faces of men, and women – my own features mock me with a resemblance. The entire world is a dreadful collection of memoranda that she did exist, and that I have lost her!
”
”
Emily BrontΓ« (Wuthering Heights)
β€œ
I want you to tell me about every person you’ve ever been in love with. Tell me why you loved them, then tell me why they loved you. Tell me about a day in your life you didn’t think you’d live through. Tell me what the word home means to you and tell me in a way that I’ll know your mother’s name just by the way you describe your bedroom when you were eight. See, I want to know the first time you felt the weight of hate, and if that day still trembles beneath your bones. Do you prefer to play in puddles of rain or bounce in the bellies of snow? And if you were to build a snowman, would you rip two branches from a tree to build your snowman arms or would leave your snowman armless for the sake of being harmless to the tree? And if you would, would you notice how that tree weeps for you because your snowman has no arms to hug you every time you kiss him on the cheek? Do you kiss your friends on the cheek? Do you sleep beside them when they’re sad even if it makes your lover mad? Do you think that anger is a sincere emotion or just the timid motion of a fragile heart trying to beat away its pain? See, I wanna know what you think of your first name, and if you often lie awake at night and imagine your mother’s joy when she spoke it for the very first time. I want you to tell me all the ways you’ve been unkind. Tell me all the ways you’ve been cruel. Tell me, knowing I often picture Gandhi at ten years old beating up little boys at school. If you were walking by a chemical plant where smokestacks were filling the sky with dark black clouds would you holler β€œPoison! Poison! Poison!” really loud or would you whisper β€œThat cloud looks like a fish, and that cloud looks like a fairy!” Do you believe that Mary was really a virgin? Do you believe that Moses really parted the sea? And if you don’t believe in miracles, tell me β€” how would you explain the miracle of my life to me? See, I wanna know if you believe in any god or if you believe in many gods or better yet what gods believe in you. And for all the times that you’ve knelt before the temple of yourself, have the prayers you asked come true? And if they didn’t, did you feel denied? And if you felt denied, denied by who? I wanna know what you see when you look in the mirror on a day you’re feeling good. I wanna know what you see when you look in the mirror on a day you’re feeling bad. I wanna know the first person who taught you your beauty could ever be reflected on a lousy piece of glass. If you ever reach enlightenment will you remember how to laugh? Have you ever been a song? Would you think less of me if I told you I’ve lived my entire life a little off-key? And I’m not nearly as smart as my poetry I just plagiarize the thoughts of the people around me who have learned the wisdom of silence. Do you believe that concrete perpetuates violence? And if you do β€” I want you to tell me of a meadow where my skateboard will soar. See, I wanna know more than what you do for a living. I wanna know how much of your life you spend just giving, and if you love yourself enough to also receive sometimes. I wanna know if you bleed sometimes from other people’s wounds, and if you dream sometimes that this life is just a balloon β€” that if you wanted to, you could pop, but you never would β€˜cause you’d never want it to stop. If a tree fell in the forest and you were the only one there to hear β€” if its fall to the ground didn’t make a sound, would you panic in fear that you didn’t exist, or would you bask in the bliss of your nothingness? And lastly, let me ask you this: If you and I went for a walk and the entire walk, we didn’t talk β€” do you think eventually, we’d… kiss? No, wait. That’s asking too much β€” after all, this is only our first date.
”
”
Andrea Gibson
β€œ
Sea-fever I must down to the seas again, to the lonely sea and the sky, And all I ask is a tall ship and a star to steer her by, And the wheel's kick and the wind's song and the white sail's shaking, And a grey mist on the sea's face, and a grey dawn breaking. I must down to the seas again, for the call of the running tide Is a wild call and a clear call that may not be denied; And all I ask is a windy day with the white clouds flying, And the flung spray and the blown spume, and the sea-gulls crying. I must down to the seas again, to the vagrant gypsy life, To the gull's way and the whale's way where the wind's like a whetted knife; And all I ask is a merry yarn from a laughing fellow-rover And quiet sleep and a sweet dream when the long trick's over.
”
”
John Masefield (Sea Fever: Selected Poems)
β€œ
I look at the blanked-out faces of the other passengers--hoisting their briefcases, their backpacks, shuffling to disembark--and I think of what Hobie said: beauty alters the grain of reality. And I keep thinking too of the more conventional wisdom: namely, that the pursuit of pure beauty is a trap, a fast track to bitterness and sorrow, that beauty has to be wedded to something more meaningful. Only what is that thing? Why am I made the way I am? Why do I care about all the wrong things, and nothing at all for the right ones? Or, to tip it another way: how can I see so clearly that everything I love or care about is illusion, and yet--for me, anyway--all that's worth living for lies in that charm? A great sorrow, and one that I am only beginning to understand: we don't get to choose our own hearts. We can't make ourselves want what's good for us or what's good for other people. We don't get to choose the people we are. Because--isn't it drilled into us constantly, from childhood on, an unquestioned platitude in the culture--? From William Blake to Lady Gaga, from Rousseau to Rumi to Tosca to Mister Rogers, it's a curiously uniform message, accepted from high to low: when in doubt, what to do? How do we know what's right for us? Every shrink, every career counselor, every Disney princess knows the answer: "Be yourself." "Follow your heart." Only here's what I really, really want someone to explain to me. What if one happens to be possessed of a heart that can't be trusted--? What if the heart, for its own unfathomable reasons, leads one willfully and in a cloud of unspeakable radiance away from health, domesticity, civic responsibility and strong social connections and all the blandly-held common virtues and instead straight toward a beautiful flare of ruin, self-immolation, disaster?...If your deepest self is singing and coaxing you straight toward the bonfire, is it better to turn away? Stop your ears with wax? Ignore all the perverse glory your heart is screaming at you? Set yourself on the course that will lead you dutifully towards the norm, reasonable hours and regular medical check-ups, stable relationships and steady career advancement the New York Times and brunch on Sunday, all with the promise of being somehow a better person? Or...is it better to throw yourself head first and laughing into the holy rage calling your name?
”
”
Donna Tartt (The Goldfinch)
β€œ
When she opened her eyes, she was both in her body and watching it, nowhere near the cavity of the tree. The Blue that was before her stood inches from a boy in an Aglionby sweater. There was a slight stoop to his posture, and his shoulders were spattered darkly with rain. It was his fingers that Blue felt on her face. He touched her cheek with the backs of his fingers. Tears coursed down the other Blue's face. Though some strange magic, Blue could feel them on her face as well. She could feel, too, sick, rising misery she'd felt in the churchyard, the grief that felt bigger than her. The other Blue's tears seemed endless. One drop slid after another, each following an identical path down her cheeks. The boy in the Aglionby sweater leaned his forehead against Blue's. She felt the pressure of his skin against hers, and suddenly she could smell mint. It'll be okay. Gansey told the other Blue. She could tell that he was afraid. It'll be okay. Impossibly, Blue realized that this other Blue was crying because she loved Gansey. And that the reason Gansey touched her like that, his fingers so careful with her, was because he knew that her kiss could kill him. She could feel how badly the other Blue wanted to kiss him, even as she dreaded it. Though she couldn't understand why, her real, present day memories in the tree cavity were clouded with other false memories of their lips nearly touching, a life this other Blue had already lived. Okay, I'm ready- Gansey's voice caught, just a little. Blue, kiss me.
”
”
Maggie Stiefvater (The Raven Boys (The Raven Cycle, #1))
β€œ
A Poem By Max White is the color of little bunnies with pink noses. White is the color of fluffy clouds fluffing their way across the sky. White is the color of angel's wings and Angel's wings. White is the color of brand-new ankle socks fresh out of the bag. White is the color of crisp sheets in schmancy hotels. White is the color of every last freaking, gol-danged thing you see for endless miles and miles if you happen to be in Antarctica trying to save the world, which now you aren't so sure you can do because you feel like if you see any more whiteness-Wonder Bread, someone's underwear, teeth-you will completely and totally lose your ever-lovin' mind and wind up pushing a grocery cart full of empty cans around New York City, muttering to yourself. That was my first poem ever. Okay, so it's not Shakespeare, but I liked it.
”
”
James Patterson (The Final Warning (Maximum Ride, #4))
β€œ
I have known many gods. He who denies them is as blind as he who trusts them too deeply. I seek not beyond death. It may be the blackness averred by the Nemedian skeptics, or Crom's realm of ice and cloud, or the snowy plains and vaulted halls of the Nordheimer's Valhalla. I know not, nor do I care. Let me live deep while I live; let me know the rich juices of red meat and stinging wine on my palate, the hot embrace of white arms, the mad exultation of battle when the blue blades flame and crimson, and I am content. Let teachers and philosophers brood over questions of reality and illusion. I know this: if life is illusion, then I am no less an illusion, and being thus, the illusion is real to me. I live, I burn with life, I love, I slay, and am content.
”
”
Robert E. Howard (Queen of the Black Coast)
β€œ
Like This If anyone asks you how the perfect satisfaction of all our sexual wanting will look, lift your face and say, Like this. When someone mentions the gracefulness of the nightsky, climb up on the roof and dance and say, Like this. If anyone wants to know what "spirit" is, or what "God’s fragrance" means, lean your head toward him or her. Keep your face there close. Like this. When someone quotes the old poetic image about clouds gradually uncovering the moon, slowly loosen knot by knot the strings of your robe. Like this. If anyone wonders how Jesus raised the dead, don’t try to explain the miracle. Kiss me on the lips. Like this. Like this. When someone asks what it means to "die for love," point here. If someone asks how tall I am, frown and measure with your fingers the space between the creases on your forehead. This tall. The soul sometimes leaves the body, the returns. When someone doesn’t believe that, walk back into my house. Like this. When lovers moan, they’re telling our story. Like this. I am a sky where spirits live. Stare into this deepening blue, while the breeze says a secret. Like this. When someone asks what there is to do, light the candle in his hand. Like this. How did Joseph’s scent come to Jacob? Huuuuu. How did Jacob’s sight return? Huuuu. A little wind cleans the eyes. Like this. When Shams comes back from Tabriz, he’ll put just his head around the edge of the door to surprise us Like this.
”
”
Rumi
β€œ
All men fear death. It’s a natural fear that consumes us all. We fear death because we feel that we haven’t loved well enough or loved at all, which ultimately are one and the same. However, when you make love with a truly great woman, one that deserves the utmost respect in this world and one that makes you feel truly powerful, that fear of death completely disappears. Because when you are sharing your body and heart with a great woman the world fades away. You two are the only ones in the entire universe. You conquer what most lesser men have never conquered before, you have conquered a great woman’s heart, the most vulnerable thing she can offer to another. Death no longer lingers in the mind. Fear no longer clouds your heart. Only passion for living, and for loving, become your sole reality. This is no easy task for it takes insurmountable courage. But remember this, for that moment when you are making love with a woman of true greatness you will feel immortal. I believe that love that is true and real creates a respite from death. All cowardice comes from not loving or not loving well, which is the same thing. And when the man who is brave and true looks death squarely in the face like some rhino hunters I know or Belmonte, who is truly brave, it is because they love with sufficient passion to push death out of their minds. Until it returns, as it does to all men. And then you must make really good love again. Think about it.
”
”
Woody Allen
β€œ
You know, I do believe in magic. I was born and raised in a magic time, in a magic town, among magicians. Oh, most everybody else didn’t realize we lived in that web of magic, connected by silver filaments of chance and circumstance. But I knew it all along. When I was twelve years old, the world was my magic lantern, and by its green spirit glow I saw the past, the present and into the future. You probably did too; you just don’t recall it. See, this is my opinion: we all start out knowing magic. We are born with whirlwinds, forest fires, and comets inside us. We are born able to sing to birds and read the clouds and see our destiny in grains of sand. But then we get the magic educated right out of our souls. We get it churched out, spanked out, washed out, and combed out. We get put on the straight and narrow and told to be responsible. Told to act our age. Told to grow up, for God’s sake. And you know why we were told that? Because the people doing the telling were afraid of our wildness and youth, and because the magic we knew made them ashamed and sad of what they’d allowed to wither in themselves. After you go so far away from it, though, you can’t really get it back. You can have seconds of it. Just seconds of knowing and remembering. When people get weepy at movies, it’s because in that dark theater the golden pool of magic is touched, just briefly. Then they come out into the hard sun of logic and reason again and it dries up, and they’re left feeling a little heartsad and not knowing why. When a song stirs a memory, when motes of dust turning in a shaft of light takes your attention from the world, when you listen to a train passing on a track at night in the distance and wonder where it might be going, you step beyond who you are and where you are. For the briefest of instants, you have stepped into the magic realm. That’s what I believe. The truth of life is that every year we get farther away from the essence that is born within us. We get shouldered with burdens, some of them good, some of them not so good. Things happen to us. Loved ones die. People get in wrecks and get crippled. People lose their way, for one reason or another. It’s not hard to do, in this world of crazy mazes. Life itself does its best to take that memory of magic away from us. You don’t know it’s happening until one day you feel you’ve lost something but you’re not sure what it is. It’s like smiling at a pretty girl and she calls you β€œsir.” It just happens. These memories of who I was and where I lived are important to me. They make up a large part of who I’m going to be when my journey winds down. I need the memory of magic if I am ever going to conjure magic again. I need to know and remember, and I want to tell you.
”
”
Robert R. McCammon (Boy's Life)
β€œ
It is also then that I wish I believed in some sort of life after life, that in another universe, maybe on a small red planet where we have not legs but tails, where we paddle through the atmosphere like seals, where the air itself is sustenance, composed of trillions of molecules of protein and sugar and all one has to do is open one's mouth and inhale in order to remain alive and healthy, maybe you two are there together, floating through the climate. Or maybe he is closer still: maybe he is that gray cat that has begun to sit outside our neighbor's house, purring when I reach out my hand to it; maybe he is that new puppy I see tugging at the end of my other neighbor's leash; maybe he is that toddler I saw running through the square a few months ago, shrieking with joy, his parents huffing after him; maybe he is that flower that suddenly bloomed on the rhododendron bush I thought had died long ago; maybe he is that cloud, that wave, that rain, that mist. It isn't only that he died, or how he died; it is what he died believing. And so I try to be kind to everything I see, and in everything I see, I see him.
”
”
Hanya Yanagihara (A Little Life)
β€œ
[Think] of an experience from your childhood. Something you remember clearly, something you can see, feel, maybe even smell, as if you were really there. After all you really were there at the time, weren't you? How else could you remember it? But here is the bombshell: you weren't there. Not a single atom that is in your body today was there when that event took place. Every bit of you has been replaced many times over (which is why you eat, of course). You are not even the same shape as you were then. The point is that you are like a cloud: something that persists over long periods, while simultaneously being in flux. Matter flows from place to place and momentarily comes together to be you. Whatever you are, therefore, you are not the stuff of which you are made. If that does not make the hair stand up on the back of your neck, read it again until it does, because it is important.
”
”
Steve Grand (Creation: Life and How to Make It)
β€œ
Nix to Declan: Begin transcriptβ€” Testing. Hello, hellooo, anybody out there? Check, check, one, two. Soft pee. Puh, puh. Resonance! Sooooooft pee. Alpha bravo disco tango duck. This is NΓ―x! I’m the Ever-Knowing One, a goddess incandescent, incomparable, and irresistible. But enough about what you think of me. It’s a beautiful day in New Orleans. The wind is out of the east at a steady five knots and clouds look like rabbits … But enough about what you think of me! Now, down to businessβ€” Squirrel! Where was I? [Long pause] Why am I in Regin’s car? Bertil, you crawl right back out of that bong this minute! Oh, I remember! I am hereby laying down this track for Magister Declan Chase. If you are a mortal of the recorder peon class, know that Dekko and I go waaaaay back, and he’ll go berserk (snicker snicker) if he doesn’t receive this transmittal. … Chase, riddle me this: what’s beautiful but monstrous, long of tooth but sharp of tooth and soft of mind, and can never ever tell a lie? That’s right. The Enemy of Old can be very useful to you. So use him already. P.S. Your middle name’s about to be spelled r-e-g-r-e-t. And with that, I must bid you adieu. Don’t worry, we’ll catch up very soon. … [Muffled] Who’s mummy’s wittle echolocator? That’s rightβ€”you are! β€”End transcript
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Kresley Cole (Dreams of a Dark Warrior (Immortals After Dark, #10))
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Max," she said. He turned and briefly closed his eyes as the girl continued. There was once a strange, small man,"she said. Her arms were loose but her hands were fists at her side. "But there was a word shaker,too." One of the Jews on his way to Dachau had stopped walking now. He stood absolutely still as the others swerved morosely around him, leaving him completely alone. His eyes staggered, and it was so simple. The words were given across from the girl to the Jew. They climbed on to him. The next time she spoke, the questions stumbled from her mouth. Hot tears fought for room in her eyes as she would not let them out. Better to stand resolute and proud. Let the words do all of it. "Is it really you? the young man asked," she said. " Is it from your cheek that I took the seed.?" Max Vandenburg remained standing. He did not drop to his knees. People and Jews and clouds all stopped. They watched. As he stood, Max looked first at the girl and then stared directly into the sky who was wide and blue and magnificent. There were heavy beams-- planks of son-- falling randomly, wonderfully to the road. Clouds arched their backs to look behind as they started again to move on. "It's such a beautiful day," he said, and his voice was in many pieces. A great day to die. A great day to die,like this. Liesel walked at him. She was courageous enought to reach out and hold his bearded face. "Is it really you,Max?" Such a brilliant German day and its attentive crowd. He let his mouth kiss her palm. "Yes, Liesel, it's me," and he held the girl's hand in his face and cried onto her fingers. He cried as the soldiers came and a small collection of insolent Jews stood and watched.
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Markus Zusak (The Book Thief)
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Because it begins to seem to me at such times that I am incapable of beginning a life in real life, because it has seemed to me that I have lost all touch, all instinct for the actual, the real; because at last I have cursed myself; because after my fantastic nights I have moments of returning sobriety, which are awful! Meanwhile, you hear the whirl and roar of the crowd in the vortex of life around you; you hear, you see, men living in reality; you see that life for them is not forbidden, that their life does not float away like a dream, like a vision; that their life is being eternally renewed, eternally youthful, and not one hour of it is the same as another; while fancy is so spiritless, monotonous to vulgarity and easily scared, the slave of shadows, of the idea, the slave of the first cloud that shrouds the sun... One feels that this inexhaustible fancy is weary at last and worn out with continual exercise, because one is growing into manhood, outgrowing one's old ideals: they are being shattered into fragments, into dust; if there is no other life one must build one up from the fragments. And meanwhile the soul longs and craves for something else! And in vain the dreamer rakes over his old dreams, as though seeking a spark among the embers, to fan them into flame, to warm his chilled heart by the rekindled fire, and to rouse up in it again all that was so sweet, that touched his heart, that set his blood boiling, drew tears from his eyes, and so luxuriously deceived him!
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Fyodor Dostoyevsky (White Nights)
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London The Institute Year of Our Lord 1878 β€œMother, Father, my chwaer fach, It’s my seventeenth birthday today. I know that to write to you is to break the law, I know that I will likely tear this letter into pieces when it is finished. As I have done on all my birthdays past since I was twelve. But I write anyway, to commemorate the occasion - the way some make yearly pilgrimages to a grave, to remember the death of a loved one. For are we not dead to each other? I wonder if when you woke this morning you remembered that today, seventeen years ago, you had a son? I wonder if you think of me and imagine my life here in the Institute in London? I doubt you could imagine it. It is so very different from our house surrounded by mountains, and the great clear blue sky and the endless green. Here, everything is black and gray and brown, and the sunsets are painted in smoke and blood. I wonder if you worry that I am lonely or, as Mother always used to, that I am cold, that I have gone out into the rain again without a hat? No one here worries about those details. There are so many things that could kill us at any moment; catching a chill hardly seems important. I wonder if you knew that I could hear you that day you came for me, when I was twelve. I crawled under the bed to block out the sound of you crying my name, but I heard you. I heard mother call for her fach, her little one. I bit my hands until they bled but I did not come down. And, eventually, Charlotte convinced you to go away. I thought you might come again but you never did. Herondales are stubborn like that. I remember the great sighs of relief you would both give each time the Council came to ask me if I wished to join the Nephilim and leave my family, and each time I said no and I send them away. I wonder if you knew I was tempted by the idea of a life of glory, of fighting, of killing to protect as a man should. It is in our blood - the call to the seraph and the stele, to marks and to monsters. I wonder why you left the Nephilim, Father? I wonder why Mother chose not to Ascend and to become a Shadowhunter? Is it because you found them cruel or cold? I have no fathom side. Charlotte, especially, is kind to me, little knowing how much I do not deserve it. Henry is mad as a brush, but a good man. He would have made Ella laugh. There is little good to be said about Jessamine, but she is harmless. As little as there is good to say about her, there is as much good to say about Jem: He is the brother Father always thought I should have. Blood of my blood - though we are no relation. Though I might have lost everything else, at least I have gained one thing in his friendship. And we have a new addition to our household too. Her name is Tessa. A pretty name, is it not? When the clouds used to roll over the mountains from the ocean? That gray is the color of her eyes. And now I will tell you a terrible truth, since I never intend to send this letter. I came here to the Institute because I had nowhere else to go. I did not expect it to ever be home, but in the time I have been here I have discovered that I am a true Shadowhunter. In some way my blood tells me that this is what I was born to do.If only I had known before and gone with the Clave the first time they asked me, perhaps I could have saved Ella’s life. Perhaps I could have saved my own. Your Son, Will
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Cassandra Clare (Clockwork Prince (The Infernal Devices, #2))
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Man is a rope stretched between the animal and the Superman--a rope over an abyss. A dangerous crossing, a dangerous wayfaring, a dangerous looking-back, a dangerous trembling and halting. What is great in man is that he is a bridge and not a goal: what is lovable in man is that he is an OVER-GOING and a DOWN-GOING. I love those that know not how to live except as down-goers, for they are the over-goers. I love the great despisers, because they are the great adorers, and arrows of longing for the other shore. I love those who do not first seek a reason beyond the stars for going down and being sacrifices, but sacrifice themselves to the earth, that the earth of the Superman may hereafter arrive. I love him who lives in order to know, and seeks to know in order that the Superman may hereafter live. Thus seeks he his own down-going. I love him who labors and invents, that he may build the house for the Superman, and prepare for him earth, animal, and plant: for thus seeks he his own down-going. I love him who loves his virtue: for virtue is the will to down-going, and an arrow of longing. I love him who reserves no share of spirit for himself, but wants to be wholly the spirit of his virtue: thus walks he as spirit over the bridge. I love him who makes his virtue his inclination and destiny: thus, for the sake of his virtue, he is willing to live on, or live no more. I love him who desires not too many virtues. One virtue is more of a virtue than two, because it is more of a knot for one's destiny to cling to. I love him whose soul is lavish, who wants no thanks and does not give back: for he always bestows, and desires not to keep for himself. I love him who is ashamed when the dice fall in his favor, and who then asks: "Am I a dishonest player?"--for he is willing to succumb. I love him who scatters golden words in advance of his deeds, and always does more than he promises: for he seeks his own down-going. I love him who justifies the future ones, and redeems the past ones: for he is willing to succumb through the present ones. I love him who chastens his God, because he loves his God: for he must succumb through the wrath of his God. I love him whose soul is deep even in the wounding, and may succumb through a small matter: thus goes he willingly over the bridge. I love him whose soul is so overfull that he forgets himself, and all things that are in him: thus all things become his down-going. I love him who is of a free spirit and a free heart: thus is his head only the bowels of his heart; his heart, however, causes his down-going. I love all who are like heavy drops falling one by one out of the dark cloud that lowers over man: they herald the coming of the lightning, and succumb as heralds. Lo, I am a herald of the lightning, and a heavy drop out of the cloud: the lightning, however, is the SUPERMAN.--
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Friedrich Nietzsche (Thus Spoke Zarathustra)
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The dark is generous. Its first gift is concealment: our true faces lie in the dark beneath our skins, our true hearts remain shadowed deeper still. But the greatest concealment lies not in protecting our secret truths, but in hiding from the truths of others. The dark protects us from what we dare not know. Its second gift is comforting illusion: the ease of gentle dreams in night’s embrace, the beauty that imagination brings to what would repel in the day’s harsh light. But the greatest of its comforts is the illusion that dark is temporary: that every night brings a new day. Because it’s the day that is temporary. Day is the illusion. Its third gift is the light itself: as days are defined by the nights that divide them, as stars are defined by the infinite black through which they wheel, the dark embraces the light, and brings it forth from the center of its own self. With each victory of the light, it is the dark that wins. The dark is generous, and it is patient. It is the dark that seeds cruelty into justice, that drips contempt into compassion, that poisons love with grains of doubt. The dark can be patient, because the slightest drop of rain will cause those seeds to sprout. The rain will come, and the seeds will sprout, for the dark is the soil in which they grow, and it is the clouds above them, and it waits behind the star that gives them light. The dark’s patience is infinite. Eventually, even stars burn out. The dark is generous, and it is patient, and it always wins. It always wins because it is everywhere. It is in the wood that burns in your hearth, and in the kettle on the fire; it is under your chair and under your table and under the sheets on your bed. Walk in the midday sun, and the dark is with you, attached to the soles of your feet. The brightest light casts the darkest shadow. The dark is generous and it is patient and it always wins – but in the heart of its strength lies its weakness: one lone candle is enough to hold it back. Love is more than a candle. Love can ignite the stars.
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Matthew Woodring Stover
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The first thing you notice about New Orleans are the burying grounds - the cemeteries - and they're a cold proposition, one of the best things there are here. Going by, you try to be as quiet as possible, better to let them sleep. Greek, Roman, sepulchres- palatial mausoleums made to order, phantomesque, signs and symbols of hidden decay - ghosts of women and men who have sinned and who've died and are now living in tombs. The past doesn't pass away so quickly here. You could be dead for a long time. The ghosts race towards the light, you can almost hear the heavy breathing spirits, all determined to get somewhere. New Orleans, unlike a lot of those places you go back to and that don't have the magic anymore, still has got it. Night can swallow you up, yet none of it touches you. Around any corner, there's a promise of something daring and ideal and things are just getting going. There's something obscenely joyful behind every door, either that or somebody crying with their head in their hands. A lazy rhythm looms in the dreamy air and the atmosphere pulsates with bygone duels, past-life romance, comrades requesting comrades to aid them in some way. You can't see it, but you know it's here. Somebody is always sinking. Everyone seems to be from some very old Southern families. Either that or a foreigner. I like the way it is. There are a lot of places I like, but I like New Orleans better. There's a thousand different angles at any moment. At any time you could run into a ritual honoring some vaguely known queen. Bluebloods, titled persons like crazy drunks, lean weakly against the walls and drag themselves through the gutter. Even they seem to have insights you might want to listen to. No action seems inappropriate here. The city is one very long poem. Gardens full of pansies, pink petunias, opiates. Flower-bedecked shrines, white myrtles, bougainvillea and purple oleander stimulate your senses, make you feel cool and clear inside. Everything in New Orleans is a good idea. Bijou temple-type cottages and lyric cathedrals side by side. Houses and mansions, structures of wild grace. Italianate, Gothic, Romanesque, Greek Revival standing in a long line in the rain. Roman Catholic art. Sweeping front porches, turrets, cast-iron balconies, colonnades- 30-foot columns, gloriously beautiful- double pitched roofs, all the architecture of the whole wide world and it doesn't move. All that and a town square where public executions took place. In New Orleans you could almost see other dimensions. There's only one day at a time here, then it's tonight and then tomorrow will be today again. Chronic melancholia hanging from the trees. You never get tired of it. After a while you start to feel like a ghost from one of the tombs, like you're in a wax museum below crimson clouds. Spirit empire. Wealthy empire. One of Napoleon's generals, Lallemaud, was said to have come here to check it out, looking for a place for his commander to seek refuge after Waterloo. He scouted around and left, said that here the devil is damned, just like everybody else, only worse. The devil comes here and sighs. New Orleans. Exquisite, old-fashioned. A great place to live vicariously. Nothing makes any difference and you never feel hurt, a great place to really hit on things. Somebody puts something in front of you here and you might as well drink it. Great place to be intimate or do nothing. A place to come and hope you'll get smart - to feed pigeons looking for handouts
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Bob Dylan (Chronicles: Volume One)