Love is heavy and light, bright and dark, hot and cold, sick and healthy, asleep and awake- its everything except what it is! (Act 1, scene 1)
William Shakespeare (Romeo & Juliet)
With my last breath, I’ll exhale my love for you. I hope it’s a cold day, so you can see what you meant to me.
Jarod Kintz (This is the best book I've ever written, and it still sucks (This isn't really my best book))
Here's something else to think about: calling when you say you're going to is the very first brick in the house you are building of love and trust. If he can't lay this one stupid brick down, you ain't never gonna have a house baby, and it's cold outside.
Greg Behrendt (He's Just Not That Into You: The No-Excuses Truth to Understanding Guys)
You know,” he said, “this is why I love you so much.”
Her tone was heartbreakingly warm. “What do you mean?”
You don’t ask me to go inside because it’s cold. You just want to make it easier for me to be where I want to stand.
J.R. Ward (Lover Avenged (Black Dagger Brotherhood, #7))
The Queen's Pride was his ship, and he loved her. (That was the way his sentences always went: It is raining today and I love you. My cold is better and I love you. Say hello to Horse and I love you. Like that.)
William Goldman (The Princess Bride)
What about Gale?"
"He's not a bad kisser either," I say shortly.
"And it was okay with both of us? You kissing the other?" He asks.
"No. It wasn't okay with either of you. But I wasn't asking your permission," I tell him.
Peeta laughs again, coldly, dismissively. "Well, you're a piece of work, aren't you?
Suzanne Collins (Mockingjay (The Hunger Games, #3))
Everything with me is either worship and passion or pity and understanding. I hate rarely, though when I hate, I hate murderously. For example now, I hate the bank and everything connected with it. I also hate Dutch paintings, penis-sucking, parties, and cold rainy weather. But I am much more preoccupied with loving.
Anaïs Nin (Henry and June: From "A Journal of Love": The Unexpurgated Diary of Anaïs Nin, 1931-1932)
When you miss someone....it’s weird…your body doesn’t function normally..as it should. Because I miss you, and my heart…it’s not steady…my soul it sings numb. Fingers are cold…like you…your soul.
Coco J. Ginger
Please don’t expect me to always be good and kind and loving. There are times when I will be cold and thoughtless and hard to understand.
(This quote is probably wrongly attributed to Sylvia Plath)
Being soaked alone is cold. Being soaked with your best friend is an adventure.
Emily Wing Smith (Back When You Were Easier to Love)
Why is it that words like these seem dull and cold? Is it because there is no word tender enough to be your name?
James Joyce (The Dead)
I would rather a romantic relationship turn into contempt than turn into apathy. The passion in the extremities make it appear as though it once meant something. We grow from hot or cold, but lukewarm is the biggest insult.
Criss Jami (Killosophy)
So when you're cold
From the inside out
And don't know what to do,
Remember love and friendship,
And warmth will come to you.
Stephen Cosgrove (Gnome from Nome)
I love that you get cold when it's 71 degrees out. I love that it takes you an hour and a half to order a sandwich. I love that you get a little crinkle above your nose when you're looking at me like I'm nuts. I love that after I spend the day with you, I can still smell your perfume on my clothes. And I love that you are the last person I want to talk to before I go to sleep at night. And it's not because I'm lonely, and it's not because it's New Year's Eve. I came here tonight because when you realize you want to spend the rest of your life with somebody, you want the rest of your life to start as soon as possible.
Nora Ephron (When Harry Met Sally)
I love thee, I love but thee,
With a love that shall not die
Till the sun grows cold,
And the stars are old
Bayard Taylor (The Poems of Bayard Taylor)
Yet each man kills the thing he loves,
By each let this be heard,
Some do it with a bitter look,
Some with a flattering word,
The coward does it with a kiss,
The brave man with a sword!
Some kill their love when they are young,
And some when they are old;
Some strangle with the hands of Gold:
The kindest use a knife, because
The dead so soon grow cold.
Some love too little, some too long,
Some sell and others buy;
Some do the deed with many tears,
And some without a sigh:
For each man kills the thing he loves,
Yet each man does not die.
Oscar Wilde (Selected Poems of Oscar Wilde including the Ballad of Reading Gaol)
To love someone is like moving into a house," Sonja used to say. "At first you fall in love in everything new, you wonder every morning that this is one's own, as if they are afraid that someone will suddenly come tumbling through the door and say that there has been a serious mistake and that it simply was not meant to would live so fine. But as the years go by, the facade worn, the wood cracks here and there, and you start to love this house not so much for all the ways it is perfect in that for all the ways it is not. You become familiar with all its nooks and crannies. How to avoid that the key gets stuck in the lock if it is cold outside. Which floorboards have some give when you step on them, and exactly how to open the doors for them not to creak. That's it, all the little secrets that make it your home.
Fredrik Backman (A Man Called Ove)
I'm like a starving man who has been given food. Maybe he's cold, and his clothes are torn, and he's ashamed, but he's not unhappy.
Leo Tolstoy (Anna Karenina)
Prayer is a relationship; half the job is mine. If I want transformation, but can't even be bothered to articulate what, exactly, I'm aiming for, how will it ever occur? Half the benefit of prayer is in the asking itself, in the offering of a clearly posed and well-considered intention. If you don't have this, all your pleas and desires are boneless, floppy, inert; they swirl at your feet in a cold fog and never lift.
Elizabeth Gilbert (Eat, Pray, Love)
...and you drink a little too much and try a little too hard. And you go home to a cold bed and think, 'That was fine'. And your life is a long line of fine.
Gillian Flynn (Gone Girl)
I want a life that sizzles and pops and makes me laugh out loud. And I don't want to get to the end, or to tomorrow, even, and realize that my life is a collection of meetings and pop cans and errands and receipts and dirty dishes. I want to eat cold tangerines and sing out loud in the car with the windows open and wear pink shoes and stay up all night laughing and paint my walls the exact color of the sky right now. I want to sleep hard on clean white sheets and throw parties and eat ripe tomatoes and read books so good they make me jump up and down, and I want my everyday to make God belly laugh, glad that he gave life to someone who loves the gift.
Shauna Niequist (Cold Tangerines: Celebrating the Extraordinary Nature of Everyday Life)
Man...heats up like a lightbulb: red hot in the twinkling of an eye and cold again in a flash. The female, on the other hand...heats up like an iron. Slowly, over a low heat, like tasty stew. But then, once she has heated up, there's no stopping her.
Carlos Ruiz Zafón (The Shadow of the Wind (The Cemetery of Forgotten Books, #1))
I love you Layla. Do you hear me? I've loved you since the first moment I heard your voice and I will continue to love you. No matter what. I love you.
Jennifer L. Armentrout (Stone Cold Touch (The Dark Elements, #2))
You, of all people, deserve a happy ending. Despite everything that happened to you, you aren't bitter. You aren't cold. You've just retreated a little and been shy, and that's okay. If I were a fairy godmother, I would give you your heart's desire in an istant. And I would wipe away your tears and tell you not to cry.
-Rachel to Julia
Sylvain Reynard (Gabriel's Inferno (Gabriel's Inferno, #1))
You have never loved me as I love you--never--never! Yours is not a passionate heart--your heart does not burn in a flame! You are, upon the whole, a sort of fay, or sprite-- not a woman!
Thomas Hardy (Jude the Obscure)
I Think it is lost.....but nothing is ever lost nor can be lost .
The body sluggish, aged, cold, the ember left from earlier fires
shall duly flame again.
Why then, O brawling love! O loving hate!
O any thing, of nothing first create!
O heavy lightness, serious vanity,
Misshapen chaos of well-seeming forms,
Feather of lead, bright smoke, cold fire, sick health,
Still-waking sleep, that is not what it is!
This love feel I, that feel no love in this.
William Shakespeare (Romeo and Juliet)
I'll take the dream I had last night
And put it in my freezer,
So someday long and far away
When I'm an old grey geezer,
I'll take it out and thaw it out,
This lovely dream I've frozen,
And boil it up and sit me down
A dip my old cold toes in.
Shel Silverstein (A Light in the Attic)
You overrate my capacity of love. I don't posess half the warmth of nature you believe me to have. An unprotected childhood in a cold world has beaten gentleness out of me.
Thomas Hardy (Far From the Madding Crowd)
He looked different in sleep, beautiful but cold as moonlight. I found myself wishing he would wake so that I might watch the life return.
Madeline Miller (The Song of Achilles)
You flirt with everything." She could tell that her eyes were popping-- her eyeballs actually felt cold around the edges. "You flirt with old people and babies and everybody in between.
Rainbow Rowell (Fangirl)
He loved books; books are cold but safe friends.
Victor Hugo (Les Misérables)
Do you really have any idea how important you are to me? Any concept at all of how much I love you?" He pulled me tighter against his hard chest, tucking my head under his chin.
I pressed my lips against his snow-cold neck. "I know how much I love you," I answered.
You compare one small tree to the entire forest."
I rolled my eyes, but he couldn't see. "Impossible.
Stephenie Meyer (Eclipse (The Twilight Saga, #3))
Of two hearts one is always warm and one is always cold: the cold heart is more precious than diamonds: the warm heart has no value and is thrown away.
Graham Greene (The Heart of the Matter)
It was heartfelt, it was heartbreaking. It was extreme joy, it was bone-crushing grief. It was fiery hot, it was icy-cold. It was true love sprouting... it was true love dying.
It's like we were both trying to hold onto something that was slipping through our fingers, and we didn't understand why.
S.C. Stephens (Thoughtless (Thoughtless, #1))
No mistake about it. Ice is cold; roses are red; I'm in love. And this love is about to carry me off somewhere. The current's too overpowering; I don't have any choice. It may very well be a special place, some place I've never seen before. Danger may be lurking there, something that may end up wounding me deeply, fatally. I might end up losing everything. But there's no turning back. I can only go with the flow. Even if it means I'll be burned up, gone forever.
Haruki Murakami (Sputnik Sweetheart)
And he leans in, so carefully. Breathing
and not breathing and hearts beating
between us and he’s so close, he’s so close and I can’t feel my legs anymore. I can’t feel my fingers or the cold or the emptiness of this room because all I feel is him, everywhere,filling everything and he whispers
He says “Please don’t shoot me for this.”
And he kisses me.
His lips are softer than anything I've ever known, soft like a first snowfall, like biting into cotton candy, like melting and floating and being weightless in water. It’s sweet, it’s
so effortlessly sweet.
And then it changes.
He kisses me again, this time stronger,
desperate, like he has to have me, like he’s dying to memorize the feel of my lips against his own. The taste of him is making me crazy; he’s all heat and desire and peppermint and I want more. I've just begun reeling him in, pulling him into me when he breaks away.
He’s breathing like he’s lost his mind andhe’s looking at me like something has brokeninside of him, like he’s woken up to find that
his nightmares were just that, that they never existed, that it was all just a bad dream that felt far too real but now he’s awake and he’s safe and everything is going to be okay and
I’m falling apart and into his heart and I’m a disaster.
Tahereh Mafi (Unravel Me (Shatter Me, #2))
I do not love you except because I love you;
I go from loving to not loving you,
From waiting to not waiting for you
My heart moves from cold to fire.
I love you only because it's you the one I love;
I hate you deeply, and hating you
Bend to you, and the measure of my changing love for you
Is that I do not see you but love you blindly.
Maybe January light will consume
My heart with its cruel
Ray, stealing my key to true calm.
In this part of the story I am the one who
Dies, the only one, and I will die of love because I love you,
Because I love you, Love, in fire and blood.
She was a ray of sunshine, a warm summer rain, a bright fire on a cold winter’s day, and now she could be dead because she had tried to save the man she loved.
She enjoys rain for its wetness, winter for its cold, summer for its heat. She loves rainbows as much for fading as for their brilliance. It is easy for her, she opens her heart and accepts everything.
Morgan Llywelyn (Bard: The Odyssey of the Irish)
I'm ruined beyond repair, is what I fear...And if so, in time we'd both be wretched and bitter."
"I know people can be mended. Not all, and some more immediately than others. But some can be. I don't see why not you."
"Why not me?
Charles Frazier (Cold Mountain)
When you're older you'll know what people who love suffer. The agony. It's better to be cold and young than to love. It's happened to me before but never like this - so accidental - just when everything was going well.
F. Scott Fitzgerald (Tender Is the Night)
I love Canada...It is a great country much too cold for good sense, inhabited by compassionate, intelligent people with bad hairdos.
Yann Martel (Life of Pi)
Arin pulled her onto his lap. He held her shaking form, tucked his face into the crook of her cold neck as she sobbed against him. He murmured that he loved her more than he could say. He promised that he would always choose her first.
Marie Rutkoski (The Winner's Kiss (The Winner's Trilogy, #3))
His hand was on my throat, and he was crushing me back with his body into the cold steel beam behind me. "Yes, I have loved, Ms. Lane, and although it‘s none of your business, I have lost. Many things. And no, I am not like any other player in this game and I will never be like V‘lane, and I get a hard-on a great deal more often than occasionally." He leaned fully against me and I gasped.
"Sometimes it‘s over a spoiled little girl, not a woman at all. And yes, I trashed the bookstore when I couldn‘t find you. You‘ll have to choose a new bedroom, too. And I‘m sorry your pretty little world got all screwed up, but everybody‘s does, and you go on. It‘s how you go on that defines you." His hand relaxed on my throat. "And I am going to tattoo you, Ms. Lane, however and wherever I please.
Karen Marie Moning (Bloodfever (Fever, #2))
I thought of you and how you love this beauty,
And walking up the long beach all alone
I heard the waves breaking in measured thunder
As you and I once heard their monotone.
Around me were the echoing dunes, beyond me
The cold and sparkling silver of the sea --
We two will pass through death and ages lengthen
Before you hear that sound again with me.
You're not hurt, Watson? For God's sake, say that you are not hurt!"
It was worth a wound -- it was worth many wounds -- to know the depth of loyalty and love which lay behind that cold mask. The clear, hard eyes were dimmed for a moment, and the firm lips were shaking. For the one and only time I caught a glimpse of a great heart as well as of a great brain. All my years of humble but single-minded service culminated in that moment of revelation.
Arthur Conan Doyle (The Case-Book of Sherlock Holmes (Sherlock Holmes, #9))
Jesus watches from the wall,
But his face is cold as stone,
And if he loves me
As she tells me
Why do I feel so all alone?
Stephen King (Carrie)
You forgot to call,' he says.
I throw open my arms. He pulls me into them, and we kiss, and his lips are cold, and I think he's crying, and I'm definitely crying, and I pull back to say, 'I am so in love with you, Joshua Wasserstein. Of course I'll wait for you.
Stephanie Perkins (Isla and the Happily Ever After (Anna and the French Kiss, #3))
They kissed for the first time then in the cold spring rain, though neither one of them now knew that it was raining. Tristran's heart pounded in his chest as if it was not big enough to contain all the joy that it held. He opened his eyes as he kissed the star. Her sky-blue eyes stared back into his, and in her eyes he could see no parting from her.
Neil Gaiman (Stardust)
Love is not a victory march
It's a cold and it's a broken Hallelujah
Leonard Cohen (Songs of Leonard Cohen, Herewith: Music, Words and Photographs)
The more I love humanity in general the less I love man in particular. In my dreams, I often make plans for the service of humanity, and perhaps I might actually face crucifixion if it were suddenly necessary. Yet I am incapable of living in the same room with anyone for two days together. I know from experience. As soon as anyone is near me, his personality disturbs me and restricts my freedom. In twenty-four hours I begin to hate the best of men: one because he’s too long over his dinner, another because he has a cold and keeps on blowing his nose. I become hostile to people the moment they come close to me. But it has always happened that the more I hate men individually the more I love humanity.
Fyodor Dostoevsky (The Brothers Karamazov)
Instructions for freedom":
1. Life's metaphors are God's instructions.
2. You have just climbed up and above the roof, there is nothing between you and the Infinite; now, let go.
3. The day is ending, it's time for something that was beautiful to turn into something else that is beautiful. Now, let go.
4. Your wish for resolution was a prayer. You are being here is God's response, let go and watch the stars came out, in the inside and in the outside.
5. With all your heart ask for Grace and let go.
6. With all your heart forgive him, forgive yourself and let him go.
7. Let your intention be freedom from useless suffering then, let go.
8. Watch the heat of day pass into the cold night, let go.
9. When the Karma of a relationship is done, only Love remains. It's safe, let go.
10. When the past has past from you at last, let go.. then, climb down and begin the rest of your life with great joy.
Elizabeth Gilbert (Eat, Pray, Love)
If you have never spent whole afternoons with burning ears and rumpled hair, forgetting the world around you over a book, forgetting cold and hunger--
If you have never read secretly under the bedclothes with a flashlight, because your father or mother or some other well-meaning person has switched off the lamp on the plausible ground that it was time to sleep because you had to get up so early--
If you have never wept bitter tears because a wonderful story has come to an end and you must take your leave of the characters with whom you have shared so many adventures, whom you have loved and admired, for whom you have hoped and feared, and without whose company life seems empty and meaningless--
If such things have not been part of your own experience, you probably won't understand what Bastian did next.
Michael Ende (The Neverending Story)
Why would you stick someone you love down in a lonely hole in the dirt? Where it's cold, and dirty, and full of bugs?
Kami Garcia (Beautiful Creatures (Caster Chronicles, #1))
We were just two teenagers, looking up at the sky on a cold February night. So no, he didn’t give me flowers or candy. He gave me the moon and the stars. Infinity.
Falling in love is like getting hit by a truck and yet not being mortally wounded. just sick to your stomach, high one minute, low the next. Starving hungry but unable to eat. hot, cold, forever horny, full of hope and enthusiasm, with momentary depressions that wipe you out.
It is also not being able to remove the smile from your face, loving life with a mad passionate intensity, and feeling ten years younger.
Love does not appear with any warning signs. You fall into it as if pushed from a high diving board. No time to think about what's happening. It's inevitable. An event you can't control. A crazy, heart-stopping, roller-coaster ride that just has to take its course.
Jackie Collins (Lucky (Lucky Santangelo, #2))
the cup of coffee
your sleepy lips
every cold and
Sade Andria Zabala
All the fires of hell could burn for a thousand years and it wouldn't equal what I feel for you in one minute of the day. I love you so much there is no pleasure in it. Nothing but torment. Because if I could dilute what I feel for you to the millionth part, it would still be enough to kill you. And even if it drives me mad, I would rather see you live in the arms of that cold, soulless bastard than die in mine," Merripen said to Win.
Lisa Kleypas (Seduce Me at Sunrise (The Hathaways, #2))
in the cold you wrap me. in my uncertainty you listen. in all my joys you celebrate. at every turn you meet me with competence and grace. what a fine dance we have together.
Mary Anne Radmacher
Like how I feel
right now. Love
is strange. One
Ellen Hopkins (Fallout (Crank, #3))
Music is storming, driving, relentless, devotional, slinky, subtle, heartbreakingly-beautiful sounds that, lyrically, switch from the cynical to the sanguine, the defeated to the defiant, dealing in love, war, beauty, children, romance, rejection, Pethedine, poetry, panties, God, Auden, Johnny Cash, cold potatoes, too-much-money, not enough money, writer’s block, flowers, animals and more flowers. But maybe I’m projecting here.
Considering what Pauline's been through . . ." Will began, then stopped himself. "She's not very nice."
"She's a cold-blooded bitch."
"I'm surprised I haven't fallen in love with her.
Karin Slaughter (Undone (Will Trent, #3))
I loved him. I loved this man so much that losing him was going to break my cold, dead heart into so many pieces I was just going to have to stick them in the same box I kept my dreams and carry it around with me forever.
Mariana Zapata (From Lukov with Love)
Statement: A girl and a boy jump into a river. The boy swims over to the girl and says, "God, it's cold."
Question: What's the probability they will kiss?
Jenny Downham (You Against Me)
But you just said you loved me."
"I do, Mer. That's the point. I can't make you like me. I can't stand the thought of you hungry or cold or scared. I can't make you a Six.
Kiera Cass (The Selection (The Selection, #1))
You know I love you more when you're cold and heartless.
Charlaine Harris (Dead to the World (Sookie Stackhouse, #4))
And what is the bloodydamn point of surviving in this cold world if I run from the only warmth it has to offer?
Pierce Brown (Golden Son (Red Rising Saga, #2))
Dorian looked at the carpet, at all the threads woven together. 'What do I do now?' They were gone: the woman he'd loved--and the man he hated. He met her stare. No calculation, no coldness, no pity in those turquoise eyes. Just unflinching honesty, as there had been from the very start with her. 'What do I do?'
She had to swallow before she said. 'You light up the darkness.
Sarah J. Maas (Queen of Shadows (Throne of Glass, #4))
Never cease loving a person, and never give up hope for him, for even the prodigal son who had fallen most low, could still be saved; the bitterest enemy and also he who was your friend could again be your friend; love that has grown cold can kindle.
The married thing. Sometimes I look at it and feel like someone from a Dickens novel, standing outside in the cold and staring in at Christmas dinner. Relationships hadn't ever really worked for me. I think it's had something to do with all the demons, ghosts, and human sacrifice.
Jim Butcher (Grave Peril (The Dresden Files, #3))
Meghan,” whispered a voice, heart wrenchingly familiar, drawing me out of the void. I recognized it immediately, just as I realized it was a figment of my desperate imagination, because the real owner of that voice would never be here, talking to me.
“Wake up,” he murmured, his deep voice cutting through the layers of the darkness. “Don’t do this. If you don’t come out of this soon, you’ll fade away and drift forever. Fight it. Come back to us.”
I didn’t want to wake up. There was nothing but pain waiting for me in the real world. If I was asleep, I couldn’t feel anything. If I was asleep, I didn’t have to face Ash and the cold contempt on his face when he looked at me. Darkness was my retreat, my sanctuary. I drew back from Ash’s voice, deeper into the comforting blackness. And, through the layer of dreams and delirium, I heard a quiet sob.
“Please.” A hand gripped mine, real and solid, anchoring me to the present. “I know what you must think of me, but…” The voice broke off, took a ragged breath. “Don’t leave,” it whispered. “Meghan, don’t go. Come back to me.
Julie Kagawa (The Iron Daughter (The Iron Fey, #2))
She was cold by nature, self-love predominating over passion; rather than being virtuous, she preferred to have her pleasures all to herself.
Émile Zola (Pot Luck)
Oh, my Margaret--my Margaret! no one can tell what you are to me! Dead--cold as you lie there you are the only woman I ever loved! Oh, Margaret--Margaret!
Elizabeth Gaskell (North and South)
That is what is wrong with cold people. Not that they have ice in their souls - we all have a bit of that - but that they insist every word and deed mirror that ice. They never learn the beauty or value of gesture. The emotional necessity. For them, it is all honesty before kindness, truth before art. Love is art, not truth. It's like painting scenery.
Lorrie Moore (Self-Help)
Grace: I picked up my sweater from the floor and crawled back into bed. Shoving my pillow aside, I balled up the sweater to use instead.
I fell asleep to the scent of my wolf. Pine needles, cold rain, earthy perfume, coarse bristles on my face.
It was almost like he was there.
Maggie Stiefvater (Shiver (The Wolves of Mercy Falls, #1))
She found him standing before the water staring unseeing at its frozen surface. He was shivering. She watched him doubtfully for a moment. 'Po,' she said to his back, where’s your coat?'
She moved to stand beside him. 'I’m warm.'
He tilted his head to her. 'If you’re warm and I’m coatless, there’s only one friendly thing for you to do.'
'Go back and get your coat for you?'
He smiled. Reaching out to her, he pulled her close against him. Katsa wrapped her arms around him, surprised, and tried to rub some warmth into his shivering shoulders and back.
'That’s it exactly,' Po said. 'You must keep me warm.'
She laughed and held him tighter.
Kristin Cashore (Graceling (Graceling Realm, #1))
You think you can’t survive without Livvy, but you can. We will go through it together.” Kit’s face was cold; he
realized he was crying. “I love you, Ty. I love you.
Cassandra Clare (Queen of Air and Darkness (The Dark Artifices, #3))
Life sneaks up on us every once in a while and gives us something we didn't ever know we wanted, and lights within us a love we didn't even know existed.
Shauna Niequist (Cold Tangerines: Celebrating the Extraordinary Nature of Everyday Life)
With callused hands
the softness of the moon
in the coldest winds
in the roughness
of his stubble
the tenderest love.
Sanober Khan (A Thousand Flamingos)
But my memories are like a fire in winter—whenever I'm cold I can warm my hands at them.
Madeleine L'Engle (The Joys of Love)
Farewell, my great one, my own, farewell, my pride, farewell, my swift, deep, dear river, how I loved your daylong splashing, how I loved to plunge into your cold waves.
Boris Pasternak (Doctor Zhivago)
Winter is much like unrequited love; cold and merciless.
I have always, essentially, been waiting. Waiting to become something else, waiting to be that person I always thought I was on the verge of becoming, waiting for that life I thought I would have. In my head, I was always one step away. In high school, I was biding my time until I could become the college version of myself, the one my mind could see so clearly. In college, the post-college “adult” person was always looming in front of me, smarter, stronger, more organized. Then the married person, then the person I’d become when we have kids. For twenty years, literally, I have waited to become the thin version of myself, because that’s when life will really begin.
And through all that waiting, here I am. My life is passing, day by day, and I am waiting for it to start. I am waiting for that time, that person, that event when my life will finally begin.
I love movies about “The Big Moment” – the game or the performance or the wedding day or the record deal, the stories that split time with that key event, and everything is reframed, before it and after it, because it has changed everything. I have always wanted this movie-worthy event, something that will change everything and grab me out of this waiting game into the whirlwind in front of me. I cry and cry at these movies, because I am still waiting for my own big moment. I had visions of life as an adventure, a thing to be celebrated and experienced, but all I was doing was going to work and coming home, and that wasn’t what it looked like in the movies.
John Lennon once said, “Life is what happens when you’re busy making other plans.” For me, life is what was happening while I was busy waiting for my big moment. I was ready for it and believed that the rest of my life would fade into the background, and that my big moment would carry me through life like a lifeboat.
The Big Moment, unfortunately, is an urban myth. Some people have them, in a sense, when they win the Heisman or become the next American Idol. But even that football player or that singer is living a life made up of more than that one moment. Life is a collection of a million, billion moments, tiny little moments and choices, like a handful of luminous, glowing pearl. It takes so much time, and so much work, and those beads and moments are so small, and so much less fabulous and dramatic than the movies.
But this is what I’m finding, in glimpses and flashes: this is it. This is it, in the best possible way. That thing I’m waiting for, that adventure, that move-score-worthy experience unfolding gracefully. This is it. Normal, daily life ticking by on our streets and sidewalks, in our houses and apartments, in our beds and at our dinner tables, in our dreams and prayers and fights and secrets – this pedestrian life is the most precious thing any of use will ever experience.
Shauna Niequist (Cold Tangerines: Celebrating the Extraordinary Nature of Everyday Life)
The ones who are not soul-mated – the ones who have settled – are even more dismissive of my singleness: It’s not that hard to find someone to marry, they say. No relationship is perfect, they say – they, who make do with dutiful sex and gassy bedtime rituals, who settle for TV as conversation, who believe that husbandly capitulation – yes, honey, okay, honey – is the same as concord. He’s doing what you tell him to do because he doesn’t care enough to argue, I think. Your petty demands simply make him feel superior, or resentful, and someday he will fuck his pretty, young coworker who asks nothing of him, and you will actually be shocked.
Give me a man with a little fight in him, a man who calls me on my bullshit. (But who also kind of likes my bullshit.) And yet: Don’t land me in one of those relationships where we’re always pecking at each other, disguising insults as jokes, rolling our eyes and ‘playfully’ scrapping in front of our friends, hoping to lure them to our side of an argument they could not care less about. Those awful if only relationships: This marriage would be great if only… and you sense the if only list is a lot longer than either of them realizes.
So I know I am right not to settle, but it doesn’t make me feel better as my friends pair off and I stay home on Friday night with a bottle of wine and make myself an extravagant meal and tell myself, This is perfect, as if I’m the one dating me. As I go to endless rounds of parties and bar nights, perfumed and sprayed and hopeful, rotating myself around the room like some dubious dessert. I go on dates with men who are nice and good-looking and smart – perfect-on-paper men who make me feel like I’m in a foreign land, trying to explain myself, trying to make myself known. Because isn’t that the point of every relationship: to be known by someone else, to be understood? He gets me. She gets me. Isn’t that the simple magic phrase?
So you suffer through the night with the perfect-on-paper man – the stutter of jokes misunderstood, the witty remarks lobbed and missed. Or maybe he understands that you’ve made a witty remark but, unsure of what to do with it, he holds it in his hand like some bit of conversational phlegm he will wipe away later. You spend another hour trying to find each other, to recognise each other, and you drink a little too much and try a little too hard. And you go home to a cold bed and think, That was fine. And your life is a long line of fine.
Gillian Flynn (Gone Girl)
In fact, he's never taken an interest in a woman before. I was beginning to to suspect he might prefer one of his male sneaks, but now..." She paused dramatically. "Now, we have the lovely, intelligent Yelena to get Valek's cold heart pumping."
"You really should get out of your sewing room more. You need fresh air and a dose of reality," I said knowing better than to believe a word Dilana said, but unable to control the silly little grin on my face.
Her sweet, melodious laughter followed me into the hallway.
"You know I'm right, " she called.
Maria V. Snyder (Poison Study (Study, #1))
I know the truth now. You've figured out I'm falling in love with you and you're trying to make me stop by hurting me this way. Well it won't work.
One way or another, I'm going to make you care about me. Yes, I am, unless your cold attitude kills me first.
It's only fair, Connor. If I'm going to be miserable, by God, so are you.
I am not a common wench and I will not be treated like one.
Julie Garwood (The Wedding (Lairds' Fiancées, #2))
Sociopathy is the inability to process emotional experience, including love and caring, except when such experience can be calculated as a coldly intellectual task.
Martha Stout (The Sociopath Next Door)
I’ll tell them,” she said. “I’ll tell them it was my fault.”
He looked at her, gold eyes incredulous. “You can’t lie to them.”
“I’m not. I brought you back,” she said. “You were dead, and I brought you back. I upset the balance, not you. I opened the door for Lilith and her stupid ritual. I could have asked for anything, and I asked for you.” She tightened her grip on his shirt, her fingers white with cold and pressure. “And I would do it again. I love you, Jace Wayland—Herondale—Lightwood—whatever you want to call yourself. I don’t care. I love you and I wil always love you, and pretending it could be any other way is just a waste of time.
Cassandra Clare (City of Fallen Angels (The Mortal Instruments, #4))
Love didn’t end all at once, no matter how much you needed it to or how inconvenient it was. You couldn’t command love to stop any more than a marriage document could order it to appear. Maybe love had to bleed away a drop at a time until your heart was numb and cold and mostly dead.
Mary E. Pearson (The Beauty of Darkness (The Remnant Chronicles, #3))
A love story can never be about full possession. The happy marriage, the requited love, the desire that never dims--these are lucky eventualites but they aren't love stories. Love stories depend on disappointment, on unequal births and feuding families, on matrimonial boredom and at least one cold heart. Love stories, nearly without exception, give love a bad name.
We value love not because it's stronger than death but because it's weaker. Say what you want about love: death will finish it. You will not go on loving in the grave, not in any physical way that will at all resemble love as we know it on earth. The perishable nature of love is what gives love its importance in our lives. If it were endless, if it were on tap, love wouldn't hit us the way it does.
And we certainly wouldn't write about it.
Jeffrey Eugenides (My Mistress's Sparrow Is Dead: Great Love Stories from Chekhov to Munro)
At some point in my life I'd honestly hoped love would rescue me from the cold, drafty castle I lived in. But at another point, much earlier I think, I'd quietly begun to hope for nothing at all in the way of love, so as not to be disappointed. It works. It gets to be a habit.
Barbara Kingsolver (Animal Dreams)
Too unconcerned to love and too passionless to hate, too detached to be selfish and too lifeless to be unselfish, too indifferent to experience joy and too cold to express sorrow, they are neither dead nor alive; they merely exist.
Martin Luther King Jr. (Strength to Love)
It hurts so much, she thought. Our children, Ned, all our sweet babes. Rickon, Bran, Arya, Sansa, Robb… Robb… please, Ned, please, make it stop, make it stop hurting… The white tears and the red ones ran together until her face was torn and tattered, the face that Ned had loved. Catelyn Stark raised her hands and watched the blood run down her long fingers, over her wrists, beneath the sleeves of her gown. Slow red worms crawled along her arms and under her clothes. It tickles. That made her laugh until she screamed. “Mad,” someone said, “she’s lost her wits,” and someone else said, “Make an end,” and a hand grabbed her scalp just as she’d done with Jinglebell, and she thought, No, don’t, don’t cut my hair, Ned loves my hair. Then the steel was at her throat, and its bite was red and cold.— Catelyn Stark
George R.R. Martin (A Storm of Swords (A Song of Ice and Fire, #3))
And I want to play hide-and-seek and give you my clothes and tell you I like your shoes and sit on the steps while you take a bath and massage your neck and kiss your feet and hold your hand and go for a meal and not mind when you eat my food and meet you at Rudy's and talk about the day and type up your letters and carry your boxes and laugh at your paranoia and give you tapes you don't listen to and watch great films and watch terrible films and complain about the radio and take pictures of you when you're sleeping and get up to fetch you coffee and bagels and Danish and go to Florent and drink coffee at midnight and have you steal my cigarettes and never be able to find a match and tell you about the tv programme I saw the night before and take you to the eye hospital and not laugh at your jokes and want you in the morning but let you sleep for a while and kiss your back and stroke your skin and tell you how much I love your hair your eyes your lips your neck your breasts your arse your
and sit on the steps smoking till your neighbour comes home and sit on the steps smoking till you come home and worry when you're late and be amazed when you're early and give you sunflowers and go to your party and dance till I'm black and be sorry when I'm wrong and happy when you forgive me and look at your photos and wish I'd known you forever and hear your voice in my ear and feel your skin on my skin and get scared when you're angry and your eye has gone red and the other eye blue and your hair to the left and your face oriental and tell you you're gorgeous and hug you when you're anxious and hold you when you hurt and want you when I smell you and offend you when I touch you and whimper when I'm next to you and whimper when I'm not and dribble on your breast and smother you in the night and get cold when you take the blanket and hot when you don't and melt when you smile and dissolve when you laugh and not understand why you think I'm rejecting you when I'm not rejecting you and wonder how you could think I'd ever reject you and wonder who you are but accept you anyway and tell you about the tree angel enchanted forest boy who flew across the ocean because he loved you and write poems for you and wonder why you don't believe me and have a feeling so deep I can't find words for it and want to buy you a kitten I'd get jealous of because it would get more attention than me and keep you in bed when you have to go and cry like a baby when you finally do and get rid of the roaches and buy you presents you don't want and take them away again and ask you to marry me and you say no again but keep on asking because though you think I don't mean it I do always have from the first time I asked you and wander the city thinking it's empty without you and want what you want and think I'm losing myself but know I'm safe with you and tell you the worst of me and try to give you the best of me because you don't deserve any less and answer your questions when I'd rather not and tell you the truth when I really don't want to and try to be honest because I know you prefer it and think it's all over but hang on in for just ten more minutes before you throw me out of your life and forget who I am and try to get closer to you because it's beautiful learning to know you and well worth the effort and speak German to you badly and Hebrew to you worse and make love with you at three in the morning and somehow somehow somehow communicate some of the overwhelming undying overpowering unconditional all-encompassing heart-enriching mind-expanding on-going never-ending love I have for you.
Sarah Kane (Crave)
Loving someone is like moving into a house," Sonja used to say. "At first you fall in love with all the new things, amazed every morning that all this belongs to you, as if fearing that someone would suddenly come rushing in through the door to explain that a terrible mistake had been made, you weren't actually supposed to live in a wonderful place like this. Then over the years the walls become weathered, the wood splinters here and there, and you start to love that house not so much because of all its perfection, but rather for its imperfections. You get to know all the nooks and crannies. How to avoid getting the key caught in the lock when it's cold outside. Which of the floorboards flex slightly when one steps on them or exactly how to open the wardrobe doors without them creaking. These are the little secrets that make it your home.
Fredrik Backman (A Man Called Ove)
I love you and I love you and I love you, on battlefields, in shadows, in fading ink, on cold ice splashed with the blood of seals. In the rings of trees. In the wreckage of a planet crumbling to space. In bubbling water. In bee stings and dragonfly wings, in stars. In the deapths of lonely woods where I wandered in my youth, staring up - and even then you watched me. You slid back through my life, and I have known you since before I knew you.
Amal El-Mohtar (This is How You Lose the Time War)
… What about the main thing in life, all its riddles? If you want, I'll spell it out for you right now. Do not pursue what is illusionary -property and position: all that is gained at the expense of your nerves decade after decade, and is confiscated in one fell night. Live with a steady superiority over life -don't be afraid of misfortune, and do not yearn for happiness; it is, after all, all the same: the bitter doesn't last forever, and the sweet never fills the cup to overflowing. It is enough if you don't freeze in the cold and if thirst and hunger don't claw at your insides. If your back isn't broken, if your feet can walk, if both arms can bend, if both eyes can see, if both ears hear, then whom should you envy? And why? Our envy of others devours us most of all. Rub your eyes and purify your heart -and prize above all else in the world those who love you and who wish you well. Do not hurt them or scold them, and never part from any of them in anger; after all, you simply do not know: it may be your last act before your arrest, and that will be how you are imprinted on their memory.
Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn (The Gulag Archipelago 1918–1956 (Abridged))
Then out spake brave Horatius,
The Captain of the gate:
‘To every man upon this earth
Death cometh soon or late.
And how can man die better
Than facing fearful odds,
For the ashes of his fathers,
And the temples of his Gods,
‘And for the tender mother
Who dandled him to rest,
And for the wife who nurses
His baby at her breast,
And for the holy maidens
Who feed the eternal flame,
To save them from false Sextus
That wrought the deed of shame?
‘Hew down the bridge, Sir Consul,
With all the speed ye may;
I, with two more to help me,
Will hold the foe in play.
In yon strait path a thousand
May well be stopped by three.
Now who will stand on either hand,
And keep the bridge with me?
Then out spake Spurius Lartius;
A Ramnian proud was he:
‘Lo, I will stand at thy right hand,
And keep the bridge with thee.’
And out spake strong Herminius;
Of Titian blood was he:
‘I will abide on thy left side,
And keep the bridge with thee.’
‘Horatius,’ quoth the Consul,
‘As thou sayest, so let it be.’
And straight against that great array
Forth went the dauntless Three.
For Romans in Rome’s quarrel
Spared neither land nor gold,
Nor son nor wife, nor limb nor life,
In the brave days of old.
Then none was for a party;
Then all were for the state;
Then the great man helped the poor,
And the poor man loved the great:
Then lands were fairly portioned;
Then spoils were fairly sold:
The Romans were like brothers
In the brave days of old.
Now Roman is to Roman
More hateful than a foe,
And the Tribunes beard the high,
And the Fathers grind the low.
As we wax hot in faction,
In battle we wax cold:
Wherefore men fight not as they fought
In the brave days of old.
Thomas Babington Macaulay (Horatius)
You love me?” he asked quietly. I dipped my face close and answered quietly, “On a cold night, a long time ago, you put your hands almost exactly where they are right now and, I might have been six years old, but I fell hard. So, yeah. For over twenty-seven years, every day, every minute, every second, I’ve loved you, Tucker Creed.
Kristen Ashley (Creed (Unfinished Hero, #2))
I will love you if you don’t marry me. I will love you if you marry someone else your co-star, perhaps, or Y., or even O., or anyone Z. through A., even R. Although sadly I believe it will be quite some time before two women can be allowed to marry and I will love you if you have a child, and I will love you if you have two children, or three children, or even more, although I personally think three is plenty, and I will love you if you never marry at all, and never have children, and spend your years wishing you had married me after all, and I must say that on late, cold nights I prefer this scenario out of all the scenarios I have mentioned. That, Beatrice, is how I will love you even as the world goes on its wicked way.
Strip back the beliefs pasted on by governesses, schools, and states, you find indelible truths at one's core. Rome'll decline and fall again, Cortés'll lay Tenochtitlán to waste again, and later, Ewing will sail again, Adrian'll be blown to pieces again, you and I'll sleep under the Corsican stars again, I'll come to Bruges again, fall in and out of love with Eva again, you'll read this letter again, the sun'll grow cold again. Nietzsche's gramophone record. When it ends, the Old One plays it again, for an eternity of eternities.
David Mitchell (Cloud Atlas)
Here I love you and the horizon hides you in vain.
I love you still among these cold things.
Sometimes my kisses go on those heavy vessels
that cross the sea towards no arrival.
I see myself forgotten like those old anchors.
The piers sadden when the afternoon moors there.
My life grows tired, hungry to no purpose.
I love what I do not have. You are so far.
My loathing wrestles with the slow twilights.
But night comes and starts to sing to me.
Pablo Neruda (Twenty Love Poems and a Song of Despair)
We waste so much energy trying to cover up who we are when beneath every attitude is the want to be loved, and beneath every anger is a wound to be healed and beneath every sadness is the fear that there will not be enough time.
When we hesitate in being direct, we unknowingly slip something on, some added layer of protection that keeps us from feeling the world, and often that thin covering is the beginning of a loneliness which, if not put down, diminishes our chances of joy.
It’s like wearing gloves every time we touch something, and then, forgetting we chose to put them on, we complain that nothing feels quite real. Our challenge each day is not to get dressed to face the world but to unglove ourselves so that the doorknob feels cold and the car handle feels wet and the kiss goodbye feels like the lips of another being, soft and unrepeatable.
Mark Nepo (The Book of Awakening: Having the Life You Want by Being Present to the Life You Have)
And they say
She's in the class A Team
Stuck in her daydream
Been that way since eighteen, but lately,
Her face seems
Slowly sinking, wasting
Crumbling like pastries
And they scream
The worst things in life come free to us
Cos we're just under the upperhand
Go mad for a couple grams
And she don't want to go outside tonight
And in a pipe she flies to the Motherland
Or sells love to another man
It's too cold outside
For angels to fly
Angels to fly
He fell to the seat, she by his side. There were no more words. The stars were beginning to shine. How was it that the birds sing, that the snow melts, that the rose opens, that May blooms, that the dawns whitens behind the black trees on the shivering summit of the hills?
One kiss, and that was all.
Both trembled, and they looked at each other in the darkness with brilliant eyes.
They felt neither the cool night, nor the cold stone, nor the damp ground, nor the wet grass; they looked at each other, and their hearts were full of thought. They had clasped hands, without knowing it.
She did not ask him; did not even think where and how he had managed to get into the garden. It seemed so natural to her that he should be there.
From time to time Marius’ knee touched Cosette’s. A touch that thrilled.
At times, Cosette faltered out a word. Her soul trembled on her lips like a drop of dew on a flower.
Gradually, they began to talk. Overflow succeeded to silence, which is fullness. The night was serene and glorious above their heads. These two beings, pure as spirits, told each other everything, their dreams, their frenzies, their ecstasies, their chimeras, their despondencies, how they had adored each other from afar, how they had longed for each other, their despair when they had ceased to see each other. They had confided to each other in an intimacy of the ideal, which already, nothing could have increased, all that was most hidden and most mysterious in themselves. They told each other, with a candid faith in their illusions, all that love, youth and the remnant of childhood that was theirs, brought to mind. These two hearts poured themselves out to each other, so that at the end of an hour, it was the young man who had the young girl’s soul and the young girl who had the soul of the young man. They interpenetrated, they enchanted, they dazzled each other.
When they had finished, when they had told each other everything, she laid her head on his shoulder, and asked him: "What is your name?"
My name is Marius," he said. "And yours?"
My name is Cosette.
Victor Hugo (Les Misérables)
Then is courtesy a turncoat. But it is certain I am loved of all ladies, only you excepted: and I would I could find in my heart that I had not a hard heart; for, truly, I love none.
Beatrice: A dear happiness to women: they would else have been troubled with a pernicious suitor. I thank God and my cold blood, I am of your humour for that: I had rather hear my dog bark at a crow than a man swear he loves me. -Much Ado About Nothing
William Shakespeare (Much Ado About Nothing)
Dante laughed. "No cold soup, no goat cheese. I'll make a mental note. And no Gottfried Curse."
"And for you it's no food at all. No sleep. And no tunnels."
"I'm low maintenance."
"Is that what you are? Because I've been trying to figure it out all semester."
"And what have you concluded?"
"A mutant. A rare disease. A creature from the inferno. Dante."
"And what if you found out you were right?" he asked. "What if it meant that I could hurt you?"
"I would say that I'm not scared. Everyone has the ability to hurt. It's the choice that matters.
Yvonne Woon (Dead Beautiful (Dead Beautiful, #1))
I love you, i love your smile your snarl your grin, your face when your sleeping.I love your hair streaming behind you as we fly, with the sunlight making it shine, if it doesn't have too much mud or blood in it, I love seeing your wings spreading out, white and brown and tan and speckled, and the tiny downy feathers right at the top of your shoulders. I love your eyes, whether they're cold or calculating or suspicious or laughing or warm, like when you look at me.
She was too quiet, or she was too loud. She took things too seriously, or not seriously at all. She was too sensitive, or too cold-hearted. She hated with every fiber of her being, or loved with all her heart. There was no in-between for her. It was either all or nothing. She wanted everything, but in the end, she settled for nothing.
Stacey T. Hunt (Game of Nightmares)
Charisma is the numinous aura around a narcissistic personality. It flows outward from a simplicity or unity of being and a composure and controlled vitality. There is gracious accommodation, yet commanding impersonality. Charisma is the radiance produced by the interaction of male and female elements in a gifted personality. The charismatic woman has a masculine force and severity. The charismatic man has an entrancing female beauty. Both are hot and cold, glowing with presexual self love.
To Sherlock Holmes she is always the woman. I have seldom heard him mention her under any other name. In his eyes she eclipses and predominates the whole of her sex. It was not that he felt any emotion akin to love for Irene Adler. All emotions, and that one particularly, were abhorrent to his cold, precise but admirably balanced mind. He was, I take it, the most perfect reasoning and observing machine that the world has seen.... And yet there was but one woman to him, and that woman was the late Irene Adler, of dubious and questionable memory.
Arthur Conan Doyle (The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes)
She fit her head under his chin, and he could feel her weight settle into him. He held her tight and words spilled out of him without prior composition. And this time he made no effort to clamp them off. He told her about the first time he had looked on the back of her neck as she sat in the church pew. Of the feeling that had never let go of him since. He talked to her of the great waste of years between then and now. A long time gone. And it was pointless, he said, to think how those years could have been put to better use, for he could hardly have put them to worse. There was no recovering them now. You could grieve endlessly for the loss of time and the damage done therein. For the dead, and for your own lost self. But what the wisdom of the ages says is that we do well not to grieve on and on. And those old ones knew a thing or two and had some truth to tell, Inman said, for you can grieve your heart out and in the end you are still where you are. All your grief hasn't changed a thing. What you have lost will not be returned to you. It will always be lost. You're left with only your scars to mark the void. All you can choose to do is go on or not. But if you go on, it's knowing you carry your scars with you. Nevertheless, over all those wasted years, he had held in his mind the wish to kiss her on the back of her neck, and now he had done it. There was a redemption of some kind, he believed, in such complete fulfillment of a desire so long deferred.
Charles Frazier (Cold Mountain)
I threw myself against the bars, so rapidly that even Mikhail flinched. "But I love you!" I hissed. "And I know you love me too. Do you really think you can spend the rest of your life ignoring that when you're around me?"
"...All my feelings...my emotions for you...they changed. I don't feel the way I used to. I might be a dhampir again, but after what I went through...well, it's scarred me. It altered my soul. I can't love anyone now. I can't—I don't—love you. There's nothing more between you and me.
My blood turned cold. I refused to believe his words, not after the way he'd looked at me earlier. "No! That's not true! I love you and you—"
Richelle Mead (Spirit Bound (Vampire Academy, #5))
When I have ceased to break my wings
Against the faultiness of things,
And learned that compromises wait
Behind each hardly opened gate,
When I can look Life in the eyes,
Grown calm and very coldly wise,
Life will have given me the Truth,
And taken in exchange -- my youth.
Sara Teasdale (Love Songs)
Do you hear that?
That's the sound of my heart beating...
Do you hear that? That's the sound of your heart beating.
It was the first day of October. I was wearing my blue sweater, you know the one I bought at Dillard’s? The one with a double knitted hem and holes in the ends of the sleeves that I could poke my thumbs through when it was cold but I didn't feel like wearing gloves? It was the same sweater you said made my eyes look like reflections of the stars on the ocean.
You promised to love me forever that night...
It was the first day of December this time. I was wearing my blue sweater, you know the one I bought at Dillard’s? The one with a double knitted hem and holes in the ends of the sleeves that I could poke my thumbs through when it was cold but I didn't feel like wearing gloves? It was the same sweater you said made my eyes look like reflections of the stars on the ocean.
I told you I was three weeks late
You said it was fate.
You promised to love me forever that night...
It was the first day of May. I was wearing my blue sweater, although this time the double stitched hem was worn
and the strength of each thread tested as they were pulled tight against my growing belly. You know the one. The same one I bought at Dillard’s? The one with holes in the ends of the
sleeves that I could poke my thumbs through when it was cold but I didn't feel like wearing gloves? It was the same sweater you said made my eyes look like reflections of the stars on the
The SAME sweater you RIPPED off of my body as you shoved me to the
calling me a
you didn't love me
Do you hear that? That's the sound of my heart beating.
Do you hear that? That's the sound of your heart
(There is a long silence as she clasps her hands to her stomach, tears streaming down her face)
Do you hear that? Of course you don't. That's the silence
of my womb.
Colleen Hoover (Slammed (Slammed, #1))
Stars, that hand gets cold,” Kai murmured. Rolling onto his back, he took the prosthetic hand in between both of his palms, warming it as he would warm icy fingers on a winter’s day. Cinder sat up and looked down at him. His eyes were still closed. He could have fallen asleep again, but for his palms rubbing over her metal hand. His shirt was rumpled, his hair tousled against the sheets.
He grunted in response.
“I love you.”
A sleepy smile curved across his mouth. “I love you too.”
“Good.” Leaning over, she kissed him fast. “Because I’m taking the shower first.
Marissa Meyer (Stars Above (The Lunar Chronicles, #4.5))
Never seek to tell thy love,
Love that never told can be;
For the gentle wind doth move
I told my love, I told my love,
I told her all my heart,
Trembling, cold, in ghastly fears.
Ah! she did depart!
Soon after she was gone from me,
A traveller came by,
He took her with a sigh.
- "LOVE'S SECRET
William Blake (The Complete Poems)
Sometimes she'd go a whole day without thinking of him or missing him. Why not? She had quite a full life, and really, he'd often been hard to deal with and hard to live with. A project, the Yankee oldtimers like her very own Dad might have said. And then sometimes a day would come, a gray one (or a sunny one) when she missed him so fiercely she felt empty, not a woman at all anymore but just a dead tree filled with cold November blow. She felt like that now, felt like hollering his name and hollering him home, and her heart turned sick with the thought of the years ahead and she wondered what good love was if it came to this, to even ten seconds of feeling like this.
Stephen King (Lisey's Story)
You had every intention of being depressed forever, but as it turns out, there's work to be done, meals to eat, movies to see, errands to run. You meant to be in ruins permanently, your misery a monument, a gash across the cold hard earth, but honestly, who has the time for that? Instead, you survived - apparently, you both did - and things are shockingly okay.
Raphael Bob-Waksberg (Someone Who Will Love You in All Your Damaged Glory: Stories)
You can have everything in the world, but if you don't have love, none of it means crap," he said promptly. "Love is patient. Love is kind. Love always forgives, trusts, supports, and endures. Love never fails. When every star in the heavens grows cold, and when silence lies once more on the face of the deep, three things will endure: faith, hope, and love."
And the greatest of these is love," I finished. "That's from the Bible."
First Corinthians, chapter thirteen," Thomas confirmed. "I paraphrased. Father makes all of us memorize that passage. Like when parents put those green yucky-face stickers on the poisonous cleaning products under the kitchen sink.
Jim Butcher (Blood Rites (The Dresden Files, #6))
Some may say that such a girl is not ready for a relationship with a man, especially a man in his late sixties. But to that I say: We don't know anything. We don't know how to cure a cold or what dogs are thinking. We do terrible things, we make wars, we kill people out of greed. So who are we to say how to love. I wouldn't force her. I wouldn't have to. She would want me. We would be in love. What do you know. You don't know anything. Call me when you've cured AIDS, give me a ring then and I'll listen.
Miranda July (No One Belongs Here More Than You)
Whoever he is who opposite you
sits and listens close
to your sweet speaking
and lovely laughing – oh it
puts the heart in my chest on wings
for when I look at you, even a moment, no speaking
is left in me
no: tongue breaks and thin
fire is racing under skin
and in eyes no sight and drumming
and cold sweat holds me and shaking
grips me all, greener than grass
I took all the blame. I admitted mistakes I hadn't made, intentions I'd never had. Whenever she turned cold and hard, I begged her to be good to me again, to forgive me and love me. Sometimes I had the feeling that she hurt herself when she turned cold and rigid. As if what she was yearning for was the warmth of my apologies, protestations, and entreaties. Sometimes I thought she just bullied me. But either way, I had no choice.
Bernhard Schlink (The Reader)
If I told you that I wanted to spend my days and nights with you, live with you, as my partner, because out there, in Hell, I realised that you mean the world to me? That you are my sanity, my laughter, my lust, my love, my comfort, my day and my night, my heat and cold and everything? If I told you that, would you think that translates to 'convenient'?
Marquesate & Vashtan
He'd come to recognize the bizarre phenomenon of Zoya's beauty, the way men loved to create stories around it. They said she was cruel because she'd been harmed in the past. They claimed she was cold because she just hadn't met the right fellow to warm her. Anything to soften the edges and sweeten her disposition--and what was the fun in that? Zoya's company was like strong drink. Bracing--and best to abstain if you couldn't handle the kick.
Leigh Bardugo (King of Scars (King of Scars, #1))
I measure every Grief I meet
With narrow, probing, Eyes;
I wonder if It weighs like Mine,
Or has an Easier size.
I wonder if They bore it long,
Or did it just begin?
I could not tell the Date of Mine,
It feels so old a pain.
I wonder if it hurts to live,
And if They have to try,
And whether, could They choose between,
It would not be, to die.
I note that Some --
gone patient long --
At length, renew their smile.
An imitation of a Light
That has so little Oil.
I wonder if when Years have piled,
Some Thousands -- on the Harm
Of early hurt -- if such a lapse
Could give them any Balm;
Or would they go on aching still
Through Centuries above,
Enlightened to a larger Pain
By Contrast with the Love.
The Grieved are many,
I am told;
The reason deeper lies, --
Death is but one
and comes but once,
And only nails the eyes.
There's Grief of Want
and Grief of Cold, --
A sort they call "Despair";
There's Banishment from native Eyes,
In sight of Native Air.
And though I may not guess the kind
Correctly, yet to me
A piercing Comfort it affords
In passing Calvary,
To note the fashions of the Cross,
And how they're mostly worn,
Still fascinated to presume
That Some are like My Own.
Emily Dickinson (I'm Nobody! Who Are You?)
One smile has the power to...
Soften stone walls.
Warm a cold heart.
Invite a new friend.
Mimic a loving hug.
Beautify the bearer.
Lighten heavy loads.
Promote good deeds.
Brighten a gloomy day.
Comfort a grieving spirit.
Offer hope to the forlorn.
Send a message of caring.
Lift the downtrodden soul.
Patch up invisible wounds.
Weaken the hold of misery.
Act as medicine for suffering.
Attract the companionship of angels.
Fulfill the human need for recognition.
Who knew changing the world would prove so simple?
Richelle E. Goodrich (Smile Anyway: Quotes, Verse, and Grumblings for Every Day of the Year)
Why love the woman who is your wife? Her nose breathes in the air of a world that I know; therefore I love that nose. Her ears hear music I might sing half the night through; therefore I love her ears. Her eyes delight in seasons of the land; and so I love those eyes. Her tongue knows quince, peach, chokeberry, mint and lime; I love to hear it speaking. Because her flesh knows heat, cold, affliction, I know fire, snow, and pain. Shared and once again shared experience.
Ray Bradbury (Something Wicked This Way Comes (Green Town, #2))
In uncertainty I am certain that underneath their topmost layers of frailty men want to be good and want to be loved. Indeed, most of their vices are attempted short cuts to love. When a man comes to die, no matter what his talents and influence and genius, if he dies unloved his life must be a failure to him and his dying a cold horror. It seems to me that if you or I must choose between two courses of thought or action, we should remember our dying and try to live so that our death brings no pleasure to the world.
John Steinbeck (East of Eden)
Satan, on the contrary, is thin, ascetic and a fanatical devotee of logic. He reads Machiavelli, Ignatius of Loyola, Marx and Hegel; he is cold and unmerciful to mankind, out of a kind of mathematical mercifulness. He is damned always to do that which is most repugnant to him: to become a slaughterer, in order to abolish slaughtering, to sacrifice lambs so that no more lambs may be slaughtered, to whip people with knouts so that they may learn not to let themselves be whipped, to strip himself of every scruple in the name of a higher scrupulousness, and to challenge the hatred of mankind because of his love for it--an abstract and geometric love.
Arthur Koestler (Darkness at Noon)
Maybe you've never fallen into a frozen stream. Here's what happens.
1. It is cold. So cold that the Department of Temperature Acknowledgment and Regulation in you brain gets the readings and says, "I can't deal with this. I'm out of here." It puts up the OUT TO LUNCH sign and passes all responsibility to the...
2. Department of Pain and the Processing Thereof, which gets all this gobbledygook from the temperature department that it can't understand. "This is so not our job," it says. So it just starts hitting random buttons, filling you with strange and unpleasant sensations, and calls the...
3. Office of Confusion and Panic, where there is always someone ready to hop on the phone the moment it rings. This office is at least willing to take some action. The Office of Confusion and Panic loves hitting buttons.
Maureen Johnson (Let It Snow: Three Holiday Romances)
Does a leaf, when it falls from the tree in winter, feel defeated by the cold?
The tree says to the leaf:
"That’s the cycle of life. You may think you’re going to die, but you live on in me. It’s thanks to you that I’m alive, because I can breathe. It’s also thanks to you that I have felt loved, because I was able to give shade to the weary traveller. Your sap is in my sap; we are one thing.
Paulo Coelho (Manuscript Found in Accra)
That time of year thou mayst in me behold
When yellow leaves, or none, or few, do hang
Upon those boughs which shake against the cold,
Bare ruin'd choirs, where late the sweet birds sang.
In me thou seest the twilight of such day
As after sunset fadeth in the west,
Which by and by black night doth take away,
Death's second self, that seals up all in rest.
In me thou see'st the glowing of such fire
That on the ashes of his youth doth lie,
As the death-bed whereon it must expire
Consumed with that which it was nourish'd by.
This thou perceivest, which makes thy love more strong,
To love that well which thou must leave ere long.
William Shakespeare (Shakespeare's Sonnets)
You must know that I do not love and that I love you,
because everything alive has its two sides;
a word is one wing of silence,
fire has its cold half.
I love you in order to begin to love you,
to start infinity again
and never to stop loving you:
that’s why I do not love you yet.
I love you, and I do not love you, as if I held
keys in my hand: to a future of joy-
a wretched, muddled fate-
My love has two lives, in order to love you.
[The Old Astronomer to His Pupil]
Reach me down my Tycho Brahe, I would know him when we meet,
When I share my later science, sitting humbly at his feet;
He may know the law of all things, yet be ignorant of how
We are working to completion, working on from then to now.
Pray remember that I leave you all my theory complete,
Lacking only certain data for your adding, as is meet,
And remember men will scorn it, 'tis original and true,
And the obloquy of newness may fall bitterly on you.
But, my pupil, as my pupil you have learned the worth of scorn,
You have laughed with me at pity, we have joyed to be forlorn,
What for us are all distractions of men's fellowship and smiles;
What for us the Goddess Pleasure with her meretricious smiles.
You may tell that German College that their honor comes too late,
But they must not waste repentance on the grizzly savant's fate.
Though my soul may set in darkness, it will rise in perfect light;
I have loved the stars too fondly to be fearful of the night.
What, my boy, you are not weeping? You should save your eyes for sight;
You will need them, mine observer, yet for many another night.
I leave none but you, my pupil, unto whom my plans are known.
You 'have none but me,' you murmur, and I 'leave you quite alone'?
Well then, kiss me, -- since my mother left her blessing on my brow,
There has been a something wanting in my nature until now;
I can dimly comprehend it, -- that I might have been more kind,
Might have cherished you more wisely, as the one I leave behind.
I 'have never failed in kindness'? No, we lived too high for strife,--
Calmest coldness was the error which has crept into our life;
But your spirit is untainted, I can dedicate you still
To the service of our science: you will further it? you will!
There are certain calculations I should like to make with you,
To be sure that your deductions will be logical and true;
And remember, 'Patience, Patience,' is the watchword of a sage,
Not to-day nor yet to-morrow can complete a perfect age.
I have sown, like Tycho Brahe, that a greater man may reap;
But if none should do my reaping, 'twill disturb me in my sleep
So be careful and be faithful, though, like me, you leave no name;
See, my boy, that nothing turn you to the mere pursuit of fame.
I must say Good-bye, my pupil, for I cannot longer speak;
Draw the curtain back for Venus, ere my vision grows too weak:
It is strange the pearly planet should look red as fiery Mars,--
God will mercifully guide me on my way amongst the stars.
Sarah Williams (Twilight Hours: A Legacy Of Verse)
Sometimes the notes are ferocious,
skirmishes against the author
raging along the borders of every page
in tiny black script.
If I could just get my hands on you,
Kierkegaard, or Conor Cruise O'Brien,
they seem to say,
I would bolt the door and beat some logic into your head.
Other comments are more offhand, dismissive -
Nonsense." "Please!" "HA!!" -
that kind of thing.
I remember once looking up from my reading,
my thumb as a bookmark,
trying to imagine what the person must look like
who wrote "Don't be a ninny"
alongside a paragraph in The Life of Emily Dickinson.
Students are more modest
needing to leave only their splayed footprints
along the shore of the page.
One scrawls "Metaphor" next to a stanza of Eliot's.
Another notes the presence of "Irony"
fifty times outside the paragraphs of A Modest Proposal.
Or they are fans who cheer from the empty bleachers,
Hands cupped around their mouths.
Absolutely," they shout
to Duns Scotus and James Baldwin.
Yes." "Bull's-eye." "My man!"
Check marks, asterisks, and exclamation points
rain down along the sidelines.
And if you have managed to graduate from college
without ever having written "Man vs. Nature"
in a margin, perhaps now
is the time to take one step forward.
We have all seized the white perimeter as our own
and reached for a pen if only to show
we did not just laze in an armchair turning pages;
we pressed a thought into the wayside,
planted an impression along the verge.
Even Irish monks in their cold scriptoria
jotted along the borders of the Gospels
brief asides about the pains of copying,
a bird singing near their window,
or the sunlight that illuminated their page-
anonymous men catching a ride into the future
on a vessel more lasting than themselves.
And you have not read Joshua Reynolds,
they say, until you have read him
enwreathed with Blake's furious scribbling.
Yet the one I think of most often,
the one that dangles from me like a locket,
was written in the copy of Catcher in the Rye
I borrowed from the local library
one slow, hot summer.
I was just beginning high school then,
reading books on a davenport in my parents' living room,
and I cannot tell you
how vastly my loneliness was deepened,
how poignant and amplified the world before me seemed,
when I found on one page
A few greasy looking smears
and next to them, written in soft pencil-
by a beautiful girl, I could tell,
whom I would never meet-
Pardon the egg salad stains, but I'm in love.
Billy Collins (Picnic, Lightning)
She loved him. But he didn’t know how to love.
He could talk about love. He could see love and feel love. But he couldn’t give love.
He could make love. But he couldn’t make promises.
She had desperately wanted his promises.
She wanted his heart, knew she couldn’t have it so she took what she could get.
Temporary bliss. Passionate highs and lows. Withdrawal and manipulation.
He only stayed long enough to take what he needed and keep moving.
If he stopped moving, he would self-destruct.
If he stopped wandering, he would have to face himself.
He chose to stay in the dark where he couldn’t see.
If he exposed himself and the sun came out, he’d see his shadow.
He was deathly afraid of his shadow.
She saw his shadow, loved it, understood it. Saw potential in it.
She thought her love would change him.
He pushed and he pulled, tested boundaries, thinking she would never leave.
He knew he was hurting her, but didn’t know how to share anything but pain.
He was only comfortable in chaos. Claiming souls before they could claim him.
Her love, her body, she had given to him and he’d taken with such feigned sincerity, absorbing every drop of her.
His dark heart concealed.
She’d let him enter her spirit and stroke her soul where everything is love and sensation and surrender.
Wide open, exposed to deception.
It had never occurred to her that this desire was not love.
It was blinding the way she wanted him.
She couldn’t see what was really happening, only what she wanted to happen.
She suspected that he would always seek to minimize the risk of being split open, his secrets revealed.
He valued his soul’s privacy far more than he valued the intimacy of sincere connection so he kept his distance at any and all costs.
Intimacy would lead to his undoing—in his mind, an irrational and indulgent mistake.
When she discovered his indiscretions, she threw love in his face and beat him with it.
Somewhere deep down, in her labyrinth, her intricacy, the darkest part of her soul, she relished the mayhem.
She felt a sense of privilege for having such passion in her life.
He stirred her core.
The place she dared not enter.
The place she could not stir for herself.
But something wasn’t right.
His eyes were cold and dark.
His energy, unaffected.
He laughed at her and her antics, told her she was a mess.
Frantic, she looked for love hiding in his eyes, in his face, in his stance, and she found nothing but disdain.
And her heart stopped.
G.G. Renee Hill (The Beautiful Disruption)
His desperation and misery swept her up like a storm capturing the sea. She turned her mind to even these feelings, because they were his, like his terrified rage in the lift when they had first met, being wrapped in his arms in the cold well, being dazzled by his wonder at the woods and her home and her. Like being a child, awareness of him the morning chorus that woke her and the lullaby that sent her to sleep, his thoughts always her first and last song.
I love you, Kami told him, and cut.
Sarah Rees Brennan (Unspoken (The Lynburn Legacy, #1))
I turned to see his expression. When I saw that he was serious, I shot hum a dubious look. “Sleeping in between the toilet and the tub on a cold, hard tile floor with a vomiting idiot was one of your best nights? That’s sad, Trav.”
“No, sitting up with you when you’re sick and you falling asleep in my lap was one of my best night.” (…) “Thanks, Trav. I won’t make you babysit me again.”
He leaned against his pillow. “Whatever. No one can hold your hair back like I can.
Jamie McGuire (Beautiful Disaster (Beautiful, #1))
ROSE: I love you, Jack.
JACK: No...don’t say your goodbyes, Rose. Don’t you give up. Don’t do it.
ROSE: I’m so cold.
JACK: You’re going to get out of this...you’re going to go on and you’re going to make babies and watch them grow and you’re going to die an old lady, warm in your bed. Not here...Not this night. Do you understand me?
ROSE: I can’t feel my body.
JACK: Rose, listen to me. Winning that ticket was the best thing that ever happened to me. It brought me to you. And I’m thankful, Rose. I’m thankful. You must do me this honor...promise me you will survive....that you will never give up...not matter what happens...no matter how hopeless...promise me now, and never let go of that promise.
ROSE: I promise.
JACK: Never let go.
ROSE: I promise. I will never let go, Jack. I’ll never let go.
James Cameron (" Titanic " Script Book)
Mare,” he whispers. “Choose me.”
Choose a crown. Choose another king’s cage. Choose a betrayal to everything you’ve bled for.
I find my thread of steel too. Thin but unbreakable.
“I am in love with you, and I want you more than anything else in the world.” His words sound hollow coming from me. “Anything else in this world.”
Slowly, my eyelids flutter open. He finds the spine to match my gaze.
“Think what we could do together,” he murmurs, trying to pull me closer. My feet hold firm. “You know what you are to me. Without you, I have no one. I am alone. I have nothing left. Don’t leave me alone.”
My breathing turns ragged.
I kiss him for what could be, what might be, what will be—the last time. His lips feel strangely cold as we both turn to ice.
“You aren’t alone.” The hope in his eyes cuts deeply. “You have your crown.
Victoria Aveyard (King's Cage (Red Queen, #3))
My child, I know you're not a child
But I still see you running wild
Between those flowering trees.
Your sparkling dreams, your silver laugh
Your wishes to the stars above
Are just my memories.
And in your eyes the ocean
And in your eyes the sea
The waters frozen over
With your longing to be free.
Yesterday you'd awoken
To a world incredibly old.
This is the age you are broken
Or turned into gold.
You had to kill this child, I know.
To break the arrows and the bow
To shed your skin and change.
The trees are flowering no more
There's blood upon the tiles floor
This place is dark and strange.
I see you standing in the storm
Holding the curse of youth
Each of you with your story
Each of you with your truth.
Some words will never be spoken
Some stories will never be told.
This is the age you are broken
Or turned into gold.
I didn't say the world was good.
I hoped by now you understood
Why I could never lie.
I didn't promise you a thing.
Don't ask my wintervoice for spring
Just spread your wings and fly.
Though in the hidden garden
Down by the green green lane
The plant of love grows next to
The tree of hate and pain.
So take my tears as a token.
They'll keep you warm in the cold.
This is the age you are broken
Or turned into gold.
You've lived too long among us
To leave without a trace
You've lived too short to understand
A thing about this place.
Some of you just sit there smoking
And some are already sold.
This is the age you are broken
Or turned into gold.
This is the age you are broken or turned into gold.
Antonia Michaelis (The Storyteller)
My friend's wiry arms were around me and he was leading me to the chair.
"You're not hurt, Watson? For God's sake say that you're not hurt!"
It was worth a wound -it was worth many wounds- to know the depth of loyalty and love which lay beyond that cold mask. The clear, hard eyes were dimmed for a moment, and the firm lips were shaking. For the one and only time I caught a glimpse of a great heart as well as of a great brain.
Arthur Conan Doyle (The Adventure of the Three Garridebs)
Three passions, simple but overwhelmingly strong, have governed my life: the longing for love, the search for knowledge, and unbearable pity for the suffering of mankind. These passions, like great winds, have blown me hither and thither, in a wayward course, over a great ocean of anguish, reaching to the very verge of despair.
I have sought love, first, because it brings ecstasy - ecstasy so great that I would often have sacrificed all the rest of life for a few hours of this joy. I have sought it, next, because it relieves loneliness--that terrible loneliness in which one shivering consciousness looks over the rim of the world into the cold unfathomable lifeless abyss. I have sought it finally, because in the union of love I have seen, in a mystic miniature, the prefiguring vision of the heaven that saints and poets have imagined. This is what I sought, and though it might seem too good for human life, this is what--at last--I have found.
With equal passion I have sought knowledge. I have wished to understand the hearts of men. I have wished to know why the stars shine. And I have tried to apprehend the Pythagorean power by which number holds sway above the flux. A little of this, but not much, I have achieved.
Love and knowledge, so far as they were possible, led upward toward the heavens. But always pity brought me back to earth. Echoes of cries of pain reverberate in my heart. Children in famine, victims tortured by oppressors, helpless old people a burden to their sons, and the whole world of loneliness, poverty, and pain make a mockery of what human life should be. I long to alleviate this evil, but I cannot, and I too suffer.
This has been my life. I have found it worth living, and would gladly live it again if the chance were offered me.
When We Two Parted
When we two parted
In silence and tears,
To sever for years,
Pale grew thy cheek and cold,
Colder thy kiss;
Truly that hour foretold
Sorrow to this.
The dew of the morning
Sunk chill on my brow—
It felt like the warning
Of what I feel now.
Thy vows are all broken,
And light is thy fame:
I hear thy name spoken,
And share in its shame.
They name thee before me,
A knell to mine ear;
A shudder comes o'er me—
Why wert thou so dear?
They know not I knew thee,
Who knew thee too well:
Long, long shall I rue thee,
Too deeply to tell.
In secret we met—
In silence I grieve,
That thy heart could forget,
Thy spirit deceive.
If I should meet thee
After long years,
How should I greet thee?
With silence and tears.
Lord Byron (Poetical Works)
I must be in love with this woman, Sumire realized with a start. No
mistake about it. Ice is cold; roses are red; I'm in love. And this
love is about to carry me off somewhere. This current's too
overpowering; I don't have any choice. It may very well be a special
place, some place I've never seen before. Danger may be lurking
there, something that may end up wounding me deeply, fatally. I might
end up losing everything. But there's no turning back. I can only go
with the flow. Even if it means I'll be burned up, gone forever.
Haruki Murakami (Sputnik Sweetheart)
We are important and our lives are important, magnificent really, and their details are worthy to be recorded. This is how writers must think, this is how we must sit down with pen in hand. We were here; we are human beings; this is how we lived. Let it be known, the earth passed before us. Our details are important. Otherwise, if they are not, we can drop a bomb and it doesn't matter. . . Recording the details of our lives is a stance against bombs with their mass ability to kill, against too much speed and efficiency. A writer must say yes to life, to all of life: the water glasses, the Kemp's half-and-half, the ketchup on the counter. It is not a writer's task to say, "It is dumb to live in a small town or to eat in a café when you can eat macrobiotic at home." Our task is to say a holy yes to the real things of our life as they exist – the real truth of who we are: several pounds overweight, the gray, cold street outside, the Christmas tinsel in the showcase, the Jewish writer in the orange booth across from her blond friend who has black children. We must become writers who accept things as they are, come to love the details, and step forward with a yes on our lips so there can be no more noes in the world, noes that invalidate life and stop these details from continuing.
Natalie Goldberg (Writing Down the Bones: Freeing the Writer Within)
There's a wonderful old Italian joke about a poor man who goes to church every day and prays before the statue of a great saint, begging, "Dear saint-please, please, please...give me the grace to win the lottery." This lament goes on for months. Finally the exasperated staue comes to life, looks down at the begging man and says in weary disgust, "My son-please, please, please...buy a ticket."
Prayer is a realtionship; half the job is mine. If I want transformation, but can't even be bothered to articulate what, exactly, I'm ainming for, how will it ever occur? Half the benefit of prayer is in the asking itself, in the offering of a clearly posed and well-considered intention. If you don't have this, all your pleas and desires are boneless, floppy, inert; they swirl at your feet in a cold fog and never lift.
This is how the entire course of life can be changed – by doing nothing. On Chesil beach he could have called out to Florence, he could have gone after her. He did not know, or would not have cared to know, that as she ran away from him, certain in her distress that she was about to lose him, she had never loved him more, or more hopelessly, and that the sound of his voice would have been a deliverance, and she would have turned back. Instead, he stood in cold and righteous silence in the summer’s dusk, watching her hurry along the shore, the sound of her difficult progress lost to the breaking of small waves, until she was blurred, receding against the immense straight road of shingle gleaming in the pallid light.
Ian McEwan (On Chesil Beach)
But he would understand,” he said dazedly. “If we explained it to him. If we told him…he would understand.”
She made her voice as cold as she could. As calm. “Told him what?”
Will only looked at her. There had been light in his eyes on the stairs… And it was going now, fading like the last breath of someone dying. She felt as if she were watching the life bleed out of Will Herondale.
“Jem would forgive me,” Will said, but there was hopelessness in his face, his voice, already. He had given up, Tessa thought. “He would,” she said, “He would never stay angry at you, Will; he loves you too well for that. I do not even think he would hold anger toward me. But this morning he told me he thought he would die without ever loving anyone as his father loved his mother, without ever being loved like that in return. Do you want me to go down the hallway and knock on his door and take that away from him? And would you love me still, if I did?”
“Then…please, Tessa, don’t tell him what I just told you…”
“I will tell no one,” she said. “I swear it…
Cassandra Clare (Clockwork Prince (The Infernal Devices, #2))
A great tree develops over time and can tell stories not only those of happiness, but also those that contain pain from what it has seen over the years, and as a result is the wise ancient tree that it is today. As the seasons change, the tree naturally goes through changes as well: where the leaves turn yellow and orange in the fall, falling by the Winter, returning in the Spring, and with full set of new leafs by the Summer. Love is no different in that there will be times when we are fully naked in the Winter, and left to wonder about Spring when it seemed so easy to love, yet the wise tree knows that no winter will last forever no matter how cold it may be.
Forrest Curran (Purple Buddha Project: Purple Book of Self-Love)
It was what she'd most enjoyed about being married to Jim. It wasn't only the heady flush of emotions when they'd made love that enthralled her; more than that, it was the lazy mornings they'd spent reading the newspaper in bed while drinking coffee, or the cold December mornings they'd planted bulbs in the garden, or the hours they'd spent traipsing through various stores, picking out bedroom furniture, debating cherry or maple. Those were the moments she felt most content, when she finally allowed herself to believe in the impossible. Those were the moments when all seemed right in the world.
Nicholas Sparks (The Guardian)
Love potions? For Will 'erondale? 'Tain't my way to turn down payment, but any man who looks like you 'as got no need of love potions, and that's a fact."
"No," Will said, a little desperation in his voice. "I was looking for the opposite, really -- something that might put an end to being in love."
"An 'atred potion?" Mol still sounded amused.
"I was hoping for something more akin to indifference? Tolerance?"
She made a snorting noise, astonishingly human for a ghost. "I 'ardly like to tell you this, Nephilim, but if you want a girl to 'ate you, there's easy enough ways of making it 'appen. You don't need my help with the poor thing."
And with that she vanished, spinning away into the mists among the graves. Will, looking after her, sighed. "Not for her," he said under his breath, though there was no one to hear him, "for me..." And he leaned his head against the cold iron gate.
Cassandra Clare (Clockwork Prince (The Infernal Devices, #2))
It slowly began to dawn on me that I had been staring at her for an impossible amount of time. Lost in my thoughts, lost in the sight of her. But her face didn't look offended or amused. It almost looked as if she were studying the lines of my face, almost as if she were waiting.
I wanted to take her hand. I wanted to brush her cheek with my fingertips. I wanted to tell her that she was the first beautiful thing that I had seen in three years. The sight of her yawning to the back of her hand was enough to drive the breath from me. How I sometimes lost the sense of her words in the sweet fluting of her voice. I wanted to say that if she were with me then somehow nothing could ever be wrong for me again.
In that breathless second I almost asked her. I felt the question boiling up from my chest. I remember drawing a breath then hesitating--what could I say? Come away with me? Stay with me? Come to the University? No. Sudden certainty tightened in my chest like a cold fist. What could I ask her? What could I offer? Nothing. Anything I said would sound foolish, a child's fantasy.
I closed my mouth and looked across the water. Inches away, Denna did the same. I could feel the heat of her. She smelled like road dust, and honey, and the smell the air holds seconds before a heavy summer rain.
Neither of us spoke. I closed my eyes. The closeness of her was the sweetest, sharpest thing I had ever known.
Patrick Rothfuss (The Name of the Wind (The Kingkiller Chronicle, #1))
Tie your heart at night to mine, love,
and both will defeat the darkness
like twin drums beating in the forest
against the heavy wall of wet leaves.
Night crossing: black coal of dream
that cuts the thread of earthly orbs
with the punctuality of a headlong train
that pulls cold stone and shadow endlessly.
Love, because of it, tie me to a purer movement,
to the grip on life that beats in your breast,
with the wings of a submerged swan,
So that our dream might reply
to the sky's questioning stars
with one key, one door closed to shadow.
There’s power in the touch of another person’s hand. We acknowledge it in little ways, all the time. There’s a reason human beings shake hands, hold hands, slap hands, bump hands.
“It comes from our very earliest memories, when we all come into the world blinded by light and color, deafened by riotous sound, flailing in a suddenly cavernous space without any way of orienting ourselves, shuddering with cold, emptied with hunger, and justifiably frightened and confused. And what changes that first horror, that original state of terror?
“The touch of another person’s hands.
“Hands that wrap us in warmth, that hold us close. Hands that guide us to shelter, to comfort, to food. Hands that hold and touch and reassure us through our very first crisis, and guide us into our very first shelter from pain. The first thing we ever learn is that the touch of someone else’s hand can ease pain and make things better.
“That’s power. That’s power so fundamental that most people never even realize it exists.
Jim Butcher (Skin Game (The Dresden Files, #15))
Think of the sound you make when you let go after holding your breath for a very, very long time. Think of the gladdest sound you know: the sound of dawn on the first day of spring break, the sound of a bottle of Coke opening, the sound of a crowd cheering in your ears because you're coming down to the last part of a race--and you're ahead. Think of the sound of water over stones in a cold stream, and the sound of wind through green trees on a late May afternoon in Central Park. Think of the sound of a bus coming into the station carrying someone you love.
Then put all those together.
Gary D. Schmidt (The Wednesday Wars)
It seems that a profound, impartial, and absolutely just opinion of our fellow-creatures is utterly unknown. Either we are men, or we are women. Either we are cold, or we are sentimental. Either we are young, or growing old. In any case life is but a procession of shadows, and God knows why it is that we embrace them so eagerly, and see them depart with such anguish, being shadows. And why, if this -- and much more than this is true -- why are we yet surprised in the window corner by a sudden vision that the young man in the chair is of all things in the world the most real, the most solid, the best known to us--why indeed? For the moment after we know nothing about him.
Such is the manner of our seeing. Such the conditions of our love.
Virginia Woolf (Jacob's Room)
I like places like this," he announced.
I like old places too," Josh said, "but what's to like about a place like this?"
The king spread his arms wide. "What do you see?"
Josh made a face. "Junk. Rusted tractor, broken plow, old bike."
Ahh...but I see a tractor that was once used to till these fields. I see the plow it once pulled. I see a bicycle carefully placed out of harm's way under a table."
Josh slowly turned again, looking at the items once more.
And i see these things and I wonder at the life of the person who carefully stored the precious tractor and plow in the barn out of the weather, and placed their bike under a homemade table."
Why do you wonder?" Josh asked. "Why is it even important?"
Because someone has to remember," Gilgamesh snapped, suddenly irritated. "Some one has to remember the human who rode the bike and drove the tractor, the person who tilled the fields, who was born and lived and died, who loved and laughed and cried, the person who shivered in the cold and sweated in the sun." He walked around the barn again, touching each item, until his palm were red with rust." It is only when no one remembers, that you are truely lost. That is the true death.
Michael Scott (The Sorceress (The Secrets of the Immortal Nicholas Flamel, #3))
For a moment nothing happens. The figure stands still and I stand cold and alive and-
He starts to run. I make my way down the rocks, slipping, sliding, trying to get to the plain. I wish, I think, my feet clumsy, moving too fast, not fast enough, I wish i could run, I wish I'd written a whole poem, I wish I kept the compass-
And then I reach the plain and wish for nothing but what I have. Ky. Running toward me. I have never seen him run like this, fast, free, strong, wild. He looks so beautiful, his body moves so right. He stops just close enough for me to see the blue of his eyes and forget the red on my hands and the green I wish I wore. "You're here," he says, breathing hard and hungry. sweat and dirt cover his face, and he looks at me as though I'm the only thing he ever needed to see. I open my mouth to say yes. But I only have time to breathe in before he closes the last of the distance. All I know is the kiss.
Ally Condie (Crossed (Matched, #2))
When I am with you, we stay up all night.
When you're not here, I can't go to sleep.
Praise God for these two insomnias!
And the difference between them.
The minute I heard my first love story
I started looking for you, not knowing
how blind that was.
Lovers don't finally meet somewhere.
They're in each other all along.
We are the mirror as well as the face in it.
We are tasting the taste this minute of eternity. We are pain
and what cures pain, both. We are
the sweet cold water and the jar that pours.
I want to hold you close like a lute,
so we can cry out with loving.
You would rather throw stones at a mirror?
I am your mirror, and here are the stones.
Rumi (The Essential Rumi)
Magic comes from the heart, from your feelings, your deepest expressions of desire. That's why black magic is so easy—it comes from lust, from fear and anger, from things that are easy to feed and make grow. The sort I do is harder. It comes from something deeper than that, a truer and purer source—harder to tap, harder to keep, but ultimately more elegant, more powerful. My magic. That was at the heart of me. It was a manifestation of what I believed, what I lived. It came from my desire to see to it that someone stood between the darkness and the people it would devour. It came from my love of a good steak, from the way I would sometimes cry at a good movie or a moving symphony. From my life. From the hope that I could make things better for someone else, if not always for me. Somewhere, in all of that, I touched on something that wasn't tapped out, in spite of how horrible the past days had been, something that hadn't gone cold and numb inside of me. I grasped it, held it in my hand like a firefly, and willed its energy out, into the circle I had created with the spinning amulet on the end of its chain.
Jim Butcher (Fool Moon (The Dresden Files, #2))
believe that this way of living, this focus on the present, the daily, the tangible, this intense concentration not on the news headlines but on the flowers growing in your own garden, the children growing in your own home, this way of living has the potential to open up the heavens, to yield a glittering handful of diamonds where a second ago there was coal. This way of living and noticing and building and crafting can crack through the movie sets and soundtracks that keep us waiting for our own life stories to begin, and set us free to observe the lives we have been creating all along without ever realizing it.
I don’t want to wait anymore. I choose to believe that there is nothing more sacred or profound than this day. I choose to believe that there may be a thousand big moments embedded in this day, waiting to be discovered like tiny shards of gold. The big moments are the daily, tiny moments of courage and forgiveness and hope that we grab on to and extend to one another. That’s the drama of life, swirling all around us, and generally I don’t even see it, because I’m too busy waiting to become whatever it is I think I am about to become. The big moments are in every hour, every conversation, every meal, every meeting.
The Heisman Trophy winner knows this. He knows that his big moment was not when they gave him the trophy. It was the thousand times he went to practice instead of going back to bed. It was the miles run on rainy days, the healthy meals when a burger sounded like heaven. That big moment represented and rested on a foundation of moments that had come before it.
I believe that if we cultivate a true attention, a deep ability to see what has been there all along, we will find worlds within us and between us, dreams and stories and memories spilling over. The nuances and shades and secrets and intimations of love and friendship and marriage an parenting are action-packed and multicolored, if you know where to look.
Today is your big moment. Moments, really. The life you’ve been waiting for is happening all around you. The scene unfolding right outside your window is worth more than the most beautiful painting, and the crackers and peanut butter that you’re having for lunch on the coffee table are as profound, in their own way, as the Last Supper. This is it. This is life in all its glory, swirling and unfolding around us, disguised as pedantic, pedestrian non-events. But pull of the mask and you will find your life, waiting to be made, chosen, woven, crafted.
Your life, right now, today, is exploding with energy and power and detail and dimension, better than the best movie you have ever seen. You and your family and your friends and your house and your dinner table and your garage have all the makings of a life of epic proportions, a story for the ages. Because they all are. Every life is.
You have stories worth telling, memories worth remembering, dreams worth working toward, a body worth feeding, a soul worth tending, and beyond that, the God of the universe dwells within you, the true culmination of super and natural.
You are more than dust and bones.
You are spirit and power and image of God.
And you have been given Today.
Shauna Niequist (Cold Tangerines: Celebrating the Extraordinary Nature of Everyday Life)
Casting back her head, Arya gazed up at the twinkling sky, her long neck gold with firelight, her face pale with the radiance of the heavenx. "Do you ask out of friendly concern or your own self-interest?" She gave an abrupt, choked laugh, the sound of water falling over cold rocks. "Never mind. The night air has addled me. It has undone my sense of courtesy and left me free to say the most spiteful things that occur to me."
"It does matter, because I regret it, and I shall not tolerate it. Did I love Faolin? How would you define love? For over twenty years, we traveled together, the only immortals to walk among the short-lived races. We were companions...and friends.
My hopes were all dead --- struck with a subtle doom, such as, in one night, fell on all the first-born in the land of Egypt. I looked on my cherished wishes, yesterday so blooming and glowing; they lay stark, chill, livid corpses that could never revive. I looked at my love: that feeling which had been my master's --- which he had created; it shivered in my heart, like a suffering child in a cold cradle; sickness and anguish had seized it; it could not seek Mr Rochester's arms --- it could not derive warmth from his breast. Oh, never more could it turn to him; for faith was blighted -- confidence destroyed!
Charlotte Brontë (Jane Eyre)
The stars are brilliant at this time of night
and I wander these streets like a ritual I don’t dare to break
for darling, the times are quite glorious.
I left him by the water’s edge,
still waving long after the ship was gone
and if someone would have screamed my name I wouldn’t have heard for I’ve said goodbye so many times in my short life that farewells are a muscular task and I’ve taught them well.
There’s a place by the side of the railway near the lake where I grew up and I used to go there to burry things and start anew.
I used to go there to say goodbye.
I was young and did not know many people but I had hidden things inside that I never dared to show and in silence I tried to kill them,
one way or the other,
leaving sin on my body
scrubbing tears off with salt
and I built my rituals in farewells.
Endings I still cling to.
So I go to the ocean to say goodbye.
He left that morning, the last words still echoing in my head
and though he said he’d come back one day I know a broken promise from a right one
for I have used them myself and there is no coming back.
Minds like ours are can’t be tamed and the price for freedom is the price we pay.
I turned away from the ocean
as not to fall for its plea
for it used to seduce and consume me
and there was this one night
a few years back and I was not yet accustomed to farewells
and just like now I stood waving long after the ship was gone.
But I was younger then and easily fooled
and the ocean was deep and dark and blue
and I took my shoes off to let the water freeze my bones.
I waded until I could no longer walk and it was too cold to swim but still I kept on walking at the bottom of the sea for I could not tell the difference between the ocean and the lack of someone I loved and I had not yet learned how the task of moving on is as necessary as survival.
Then days passed by and I spent them with my work
and now I’m writing letters I will never dare to send.
But there is this one day every year or so
when the burden gets too heavy
and I collect my belongings I no longer need
and make my way to the ocean to burn and drown and start anew
and it is quite wonderful, setting fire to my chains and flames on written words
and I stand there, starring deep into the heat until they’re all gone.
Nothing left to hold me back.
You kissed me that morning as if you’d never done it before and never would again and now I write another letter that I will never dare to send, collecting memories of loss
like chains wrapped around my veins,
and if you see a fire from the shore tonight
it’s my chains going up in flames.
The time of moon i quite glorious.
We could have been so glorious.
Charlotte Eriksson (You're Doing Just Fine)
I love the stillness of the wood;
I love the music of the rill:
I love the couch in pensive mod
Upon some silent hill.
Scarce heard, beneath yon arching trees,
The silver-crested ripples pass;
and, like a mimic brook, the breeze
Whispers among the grass.
Here from the world I win release,
Nor scorn of men, nor footstep rude,
Break into mar the holy peace
Of this great solitude.
Here may the silent tears I weep
Lull the vested spirit into rest,
As infants sob themselves to sleep
Upon a mothers breast.
But when the bitter hour is gone,
And the keen throbbing pangs are still,
Oh, sweetest then to couch alone
Upon some silent hill!
To live in joys that once have been,
To put the cold world out of sight,
And deck life's drear and barren scene
With hues of rainbow-light.
For what to man the gift of breath,
If sorrow be his lot below;
If all the day that ends in death
Be dark with clouds of woe?
Shall the poor transport of an hour
Repay long years of sore distress-
The fragrance of a lonely flower
Make glad the wilderness?
Ye golden house of life's young spring,
Of innocence, of love and truth!
Bright, beyond all imagining,
Thou fairy-dream of youth!
I'd give all wealth that years have piled,
The slow result of Life's decay,
To be once more a little child
For on bright summers day.
Year of Our Lord 1878
“Mother, 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.
Cassandra Clare (Clockwork Prince (The Infernal Devices, #2))
I was born in the congo
I walked to the fertile crescent and built
I designed a pyramid so tough that a star
that only glows every one hundred years falls
into the center giving divine perfect light
I am bad
I sat on the throne
drinking nectar with allah
I got hot and sent an ice age to europe
to cool my thirst
My oldest daughter is nefertiti
the tears from my birth pains
created the nile
I am a beautiful woman
I gazed on the forest and burned
out the sahara desert
with a packet of goat's meat
and a change of clothes
I crossed it in two hours
I am a gazelle so swift
so swift you can't catch me
For a birthday present when he was three
I gave my son hannibal an elephant
He gave me rome for mother's day
My strength flows ever on
My son noah built new/ark and
I stood proudly at the helm
as we sailed on a soft summer day
I turned myself into myself and was
men intone my loving name
All praises All praises
I am the one who would save
I sowed diamonds in my back yard
My bowels deliver uranium
the filings from my fingernails are
On a trip north
I caught a cold and blew
My nose giving oil to the arab world
I am so hip even my errors are correct
I sailed west to reach east and had to round off
the earth as I went
The hair from my head thinned and gold was laid
across three continents
I am so perfect so divine so ethereal so surreal
I cannot be comprehended except by my permission
I mean...I...can fly
like a bird in the sky...
Not too long ago thousands spent their lives as recluses to find spiritual vision in the solitude of nature. Modern man need not become a hermit to achieve this goal, for it is neither ecstasy nor world-estranged mysticism his era demands, but a balance between quantitative and qualitative reality. Modern man, with his reduced capacity for intuitive perception, is unlikely to benefit from the contemplative life of a hermit in the wilderness. But what he can do is to give undivided attention, at times, to a natural phenomenon, observing it in detail, and recalling all the scientific facts about it he may remember. Gradually, however, he must silence his thoughts and, for moments at least, forget all his personal cares and desires, until nothing remains in his soul but awe for the miracle before him. Such efforts are like journeys beyond the boundaries of narrow self-love and, although the process of intuitive awakening is laborious and slow, its rewards are noticeable from the very first. If pursued through the course of years, something will begin to stir in the human soul, a sense of kinship with the forces of life consciousness which rule the world of plants and animals, and with the powers which determine the laws of matter. While analytical intellect may well be called the most precious fruit of the Modern Age, it must not be allowed to rule supreme in matters of cognition. If science is to bring happiness and real progress to the world, it needs the warmth of man's heart just as much as the cold inquisitiveness of his brain.
I'll tell you how the sun rose
A ribbon at a time...
It's a living book, this life; it folds out in a million settings, cast with a billion beautiful characters, and it is almost over for you. It doesn't matter how old you are; it is coming to a close quickly, and soon the credits will roll and all your friends will fold out of your funeral and drive back to their homes in cold and still and silence. And they will make a fire and pour some wine and think about how you once were . . . and feel a kind of sickness at the idea you never again will be.
So soon you will be in that part of the book where you are holding the bulk of the pages in your left hand, and only a thin wisp of the story in your right. You will know by the page count, not by the narrative, that the Author is wrapping things up. You begin to mourn its ending, and want to pace yourself slowly toward its closure, knowing the last lines will speak of something beautiful, of the end of something long and earned, and you hope the thing closes out like last breaths, like whispers about how much and who the characters have come to love, and how authentic the sentiments feel when they have earned a hundred pages of qualification.
And so my prayer is that your story will have involved some leaving and some coming home, some summer and some winter, some roses blooming out like children in a play. My hope is your story will be about changing, about getting something beautiful born inside of you, about learning to love a woman or a man, about learning to love a child, about moving yourself around water, around mountains, around friends, about learning to love others more than we love ourselves, about learning oneness as a way of understanding God. We get one story, you and I, and one story alone. God has established the elements, the setting and the climax and the resolution. It would be a crime not to venture out, wouldn't it?
Donald Miller (Through Painted Deserts: Light, God, and Beauty on the Open Road)
Thy husband is thy lord, thy life, thy keeper,
Thy head, thy sovereign, one that cares for thee,
And for thy maintenance; commits his body
To painful labor, both by sea and land;
To watch the night in storms, the day in cold,
Whilst thou li’st warm at home, secure and safe;
And craves no other tribute at thy hands
But love, fair looks, and true obedience-
Too little payment for so great a debt.
Such duty as the subject owes the prince,
Even such a woman oweth to her husband;
And when she is froward, peevish, sullen, sour,
And no obedient to his honest will,
What is she but a foul contending rebel,
And graceless traitor to her loving lord?
I asham’d that women are so simple
‘To offer war where they should kneel for peace,
Or seek for rule, supremacy, and sway,
When they are bound to serve, love, and obey.
Why are our bodies soft, and weak, and smooth,
Unapt to toil and trouble in the world,
But that our soft conditions, and our hearts,
Should well agree with our external parts?
William Shakespeare (The Taming of the Shrew)
I have no idea whether parents can be of help, and I do not blame mine. It was my own affair to come to terms with myself and to find my own way, and like most well-brought-up children, I managed it badly.
Everyone goes through this crisis. For the average person this is the point when the demands of his own life come into the sharpest conflict with his environment, when the way forward has to be sought with the bitterest means at his command. Many people experience the dying and rebirth - which is our fate - only this once during their entire life. Their childhood becomes hollow and gradually collapses, everything they love abandons them and they suddenly feel surrounded by the loneliness and mortal cold of the universe. Very many are caught forever in this impasse, and for the rest of their lives cling painfully to an irrevocable past, the dream of the lost paradise - which is the worst and most ruthless of dreams.
Hermann Hesse (Demian: Die Geschichte von Emil Sinclairs Jugend)
He steps back, still looking. In the painting, Willem's torso is directed toward the viewer, but his face is turned to the right so that he is almost in profile, and he is leaning towards something or someone and smiling. And because he knows Willem's smiles, he knows that Willem has been captured looking at something he loves, he knows Willem in that instant is happy. Willem's face and neck dominate the canvas and although the background is suggested rather than shown, he knows that Willem is at their table. He knows it from the way that JB has drawn the light and shadows on Willem's face. He has the sense that if he says Willem's name that the face in the painting will turn toward him and answer; he has the sense that if he stretches his hand out and strokes the canvas he will feel beneath his fingertips Willem's hair, his fringe of eyelashes.
But he doesn't do this, of course, just looks up at last and sees JB smiling at him, sadly. "The title card's been mounted already," JB says, and he goes slowly to the wall behind the painting and sees its title - "Willem Listening to Jude Tell a Story, Greene Street"-and he feels his beneath abandon him; it feels as if his heart is made of something oozing and cold, like ground meat, and it is being squeezed inside a fist so that chunks of it are falling, plopping to the ground near his feet.
Hanya Yanagihara (A Little Life)
Dear Max -
You looked so beautiful today. I'm going to remember what you looked like forever.
And I hope you remember me the same way - clean, ha-ha. I'm glad our last time together was happy.
But I'm leaving tonight, leaving the flock, and this time it's for good. I don't know if I'll ever see any of you again. The thing is, Max, that everyone is a little bit right. Added up all together, it makes this one big right.
Dylan's a little bit right about how my being here might be putting the rest of you in danger. The threat might have been just about Dr. Hans, but we don't know that for sure. Angel is a little bit right about how splitting up the flock will help all of us survive. And the rest of the flock is a little bit right about how when you and I are together, we're focused on each other - we can't help it.
The thing is, Maximum, I love you. I can't help but be focused on you when we're together. If you're in the room, I want to be next to you. If you're gone, I think about you. You're the one who I want to talk to. In a fight, I want you at my back. When we're together, the sun is shining. When we're apart, everything is in shades of gray.
I hope you'll forgive me someday for turning our worlds into shades of gray - at least for a while.
You're not at your best when you're focused on me. I mean, you're at your best Maxness, but not your best leaderness. I mostly need Maxness. The flock mostly needs leaderness. And Angel, if you're listening to this, it ain't you, sweetie. Not yet.
At least for a couple more years, the flock needs a leader to survive, no matter how capable everyone thinks he or she is. The truth is that they do need a leader, and the truth is that you are the best leader. It's one of the things I love about you.
But the more I thought about it, the more sure I got that this is the right thing to do. Maybe not for you, or for me, but for all of us together, our flock.
Please don't try to find me. This is the hardest thing I've ever done in my life, besides wearing that suit today, and seeing you again will only make it harder. You'd ask me to come back, and I would, because I can't say no to you. But all the same problems would still be there, and I'd end up leaving again, and then we'd have to go through this all over again.
Please make us only go through this once.
I love you. I love your smile, your snarl, your grin, your face when you're sleeping. I love your hair streaming out behind you as we fly, with the sunlight making it shine, if it doesn't have too much mud or blood in it. I love seeing your wings spreading out, white and brown and tan and speckled, and the tiny, downy feathers right at the top of your shoulders. I love your eyes, whether they're cold or calculating or suspicious or laughing or warm, like when you look at me.
You're the best warrior I know, the best leader. You're the most comforting mom we've ever had. You're the biggest goofball, the worst driver, and a truly lousy cook. You've kept us safe and provided for us, in good times and bad. You're my best friend, my first and only love, and the most beautiful girl I've ever seen, with wings or without.
Tell you what, sweetie: If in twenty years we haven't expired yet, and the world is still more or less in one piece, I'll meet you at the top of that cliff where we first met the hawks and learned to fly with them. You know the one. Twenty years from today, if I'm alive, I'll be there, waiting for you. You can bet on it.
Good-bye, my love.
P.S. Tell everyone I sure will miss them
There is an internal landscape, a geography of the soul; we search for its outlines all our lives. Those who are lucky enough to find it ease like water over a stone, onto its fluid contours, and are home. Some find it in the place of their birth; others may leave a seaside town, parched, and find themselves refreshed in the desert. There are those born in rolling countryside who are really only at ease in the intense and busy loneliness of the city. For some, the search is for the imprint of another; a child or a mother, a grandfather or a brother, a lover, a husband, a wife, or a foe. We may go through our lives happy or unhappy, successful or unfulfilled, loved or unloved, without ever standing cold with the shock of recognition, without ever feeling the agony as the twisted iron in our soul unlocks itself and we slip at last into place.
Here's the thing about people with good hearts:
They give you excuses when you don't explain yourself.
They accept the apologies you don't give.
They see the best in you.
They always lift you up, even if that means putting their own priorities aside.
They will never be too "busy" for you.
They make time, even when you don't.
And you wonder why they're the most sensitive people, the most caring people, why they are willing to give so much of themselves with no expectation in return.
You wonder why their existence is not so essential to your well-being. It's because they don't make you work hard for the attention they give you. They accept the love they think they deserve
- and you accepted the love you think you're entitled to.
Don't take them for granted.
Fear the day when a good heart gives up on you.
Our skies don't become grey out of nowhere, our sunshine does not allow the darkness to take over for no reason.
A heart does turn cold unless it's been treated with coldness for a while
At 12 years old I started bleeding with the moon
and beating up boys who dreamed of becoming astronauts.
I fought with my knuckles white as stars,
and left bruises the shape of Salem.
There are things we know by heart,
and things we don't.
At 13 my friend Jen tried to teach me how to blow rings of smoke.
I'd watch the nicotine rising from her lips like halos,
but I could never make dying beautiful.
The sky didn't fill with colors the night I convinced myself
veins are kite strings you can only cut free.
I suppose I love this life,
in spite of my clenched fist.
I open my palm and my lifelines look like branches from an Aspen tree,
and there are songbirds perched on the tips of my fingers,
and I wonder if Beethoven held his breath
the first time his fingers touched the keys
the same way a soldier holds his breath
the first time his finger clicks the trigger.
We all have different reasons for forgetting to breathe.
But my lungs remember
the day my mother took my hand and placed it on her belly
and told me the symphony beneath was my baby sister's heartbeat.
And I knew life would tremble
like the first tear on a prison guard's hardened cheek,
like a prayer on a dying man's lips,
like a vet holding a full bottle of whisky like an empty gun in a war zone…
just take me just take me
Sometimes the scales themselves weigh far too much,
the heaviness of forever balancing blue sky with red blood.
We were all born on days when too many people died in terrible ways,
but you still have to call it a birthday.
You still have to fall for the prettiest girl on the playground at recess
and hope she knows you can hit a baseball
further than any boy in the whole third grade
and I've been running for home
through the windpipe of a man who sings
while his hands playing washboard with a spoon
on a street corner in New Orleans
where every boarded up window is still painted with the words
We're Coming Back
like a promise to the ocean
that we will always keep moving towards the music,
the way Basquait slept in a cardboard box to be closer to the rain.
Beauty, catch me on your tongue.
Thunder, clap us open.
The pupils in our eyes were not born to hide beneath their desks.
Tonight lay us down to rest in the Arizona desert,
then wake us washing the feet of pregnant women
who climbed across the border with their bellies aimed towards the sun.
I know a thousand things louder than a soldier's gun.
I know the heartbeat of his mother.
Don't cover your ears, Love.
Don't cover your ears, Life.
There is a boy writing poems in Central Park
and as he writes he moves
and his bones become the bars of Mandela's jail cell stretching apart,
and there are men playing chess in the December cold
who can't tell if the breath rising from the board
is their opponents or their own,
and there's a woman on the stairwell of the subway
swearing she can hear Niagara Falls from her rooftop in Brooklyn,
and I'm remembering how Niagara Falls is a city overrun
with strip malls and traffic and vendors
and one incredibly brave river that makes it all worth it.
Ya'll, I know this world is far from perfect.
I am not the type to mistake a streetlight for the moon.
I know our wounds are deep as the Atlantic.
But every ocean has a shoreline
and every shoreline has a tide
that is constantly returning
to wake the songbirds in our hands,
to wake the music in our bones,
to place one fearless kiss on the mouth of that brave river
that has to run through the center of our hearts
to find its way home.
Keep a guard over your eyes and ears as the inlets of your heart, and over your lips as the outlet, lest they betray you in a moment of unwariness. Receive, coldly and dispassionately, every attention, till you have ascertained and duly considered the worth of the aspirant; and let your affections be consequent upon approbation alone. First study; then approve; then love. Let your eyes be blind to all external attractions, your ears deaf to all the fascinations of flattery and light discourse. - These are nothing - and worse than nothing - snares and wiles of the tempter, to lure the thoughtless to their own destruction. Principle is the first thing, after all; and next to that, good sense, respectability, and moderate wealth. If you should marry the handsomest, and most accomplished and superficially agreeable man in the world, you little know the misery that would overwhelm you if, after all, you should find him to be a worthless reprobate, or even an impracticable fool.
Anne Brontë (The Tenant of Wildfell Hall)
You cold or something?' he said. She strained against him; she wanted to pass clear through him: 'It's a chill, it's nothing'; and then, pushing a little away: 'Say you love me.'
I said it.'
No, oh no. You haven't. I was listening. And you never do.'
Well, give me time.'
He sat up and glanced at a clock across the room. It was after five. Then decisively he pulled off his windbreaker and began to unlace his shoes.
Aren't you going to, Clyde?'
He grinned back at her. 'Yeah, I'm going to.'
I don't mean that; and what's more, I don't like it: you sound as though you were talking to a whore.'
Come off it, honey. You didn't drag me up here to tell you about love.'
You disgust me,' she said.
Listen to her! She's sore!'
A silence followed that circulated like an aggrieved bird. Clyde said, 'You want to hit me, huh? I kind of like you when you're sore: that's the kind of girl you are,' which made Grady light in his arms when he lifted and kissed her. 'You still want me to say it?' Her head slumped on his shoulder. 'Because I will,' he said, fooling his fingers in her hair. 'Take off your clothes--and I'll tell it to you good.
Truman Capote (Summer Crossing)
I am a book.
Sheaves pressed from the pulp of oaks and pines
a natural sawdust made dingy from purses, dusty
Steamy and anxious, abused and misused,
kissed and cried over,
smeared, yellowed, and torn,
loved, hated, scorned.
I am a book.
I am a book that remembers,
days when I stood proud in good company
When the children came, I leapt into their arms,
when the women came, they cradled me against their soft breasts,
when the men came, they held me like a lover,
and I smelled the sweet smell of cigars and brandy as we sat together in leather chairs,
next to pool tables, on porch swings, in rocking chairs,
my words hanging in the air like bright gems, dangling,
then forgotten, I crumbled,
dust to dust.
I am a tale of woe and secrets,
a book brand-new, sprung from the loins of ancient fathers clothed in tweed,
born of mothers in lands of heather and coal soot.
A family too close to see the blood on its hands,
too dear to suffering, to poison, to cold steel and revenge,
deaf to the screams of mortal wounding,
amused at decay and torment,
a family bred in the dankest swamp of human desires.
I am a tale of woe and secrets,
I am a mystery.
I am intrigue, anxiety, fear,
I tangle in the night with madmen, spend my days cloaked in black,
hiding from myself, from dark angels,
from the evil that lurks within
and the evil we cannot lurk without.
I am words of adventure,
of faraway places where no one knows my tongue,
of curious cultures in small, back alleys, mean streets,
the crumbling house in each of us.
I am primordial fear, the great unknown,
I am life everlasting.
I touch you and you shiver, I blow in your ear and you follow me,
down foggy lanes, into places you've never seen,
to see things no one should see,
to be someone you could only hope to be.
I ride the winds of imagination on a black-and-white horse,
to find the truth inside of me, to cure the ills inside of you,
to take one passenger at a time over that tall mountain,
across that lonely plain to a place you've never been
where the world stops for just one minute
and everything is right.
I am a mystery.
-Rides a Black and White Horse
A song of despair
The memory of you emerges from the night around me.
The river mingles its stubborn lament with the sea.
Deserted like the dwarves at dawn.
It is the hour of departure, oh deserted one!
Cold flower heads are raining over my heart.
Oh pit of debris, fierce cave of the shipwrecked.
In you the wars and the flights accumulated.
From you the wings of the song birds rose.
You swallowed everything, like distance.
Like the sea, like time. In you everything sank!
It was the happy hour of assault and the kiss.
The hour of the spell that blazed like a lighthouse.
Pilot's dread, fury of blind driver,
turbulent drunkenness of love, in you everything sank!
In the childhood of mist my soul, winged and wounded.
Lost discoverer, in you everything sank!
You girdled sorrow, you clung to desire,
sadness stunned you, in you everything sank!
I made the wall of shadow draw back,
beyond desire and act, I walked on.
Oh flesh, my own flesh, woman whom I loved and lost,
I summon you in the moist hour, I raise my song to you.
Like a jar you housed infinite tenderness.
and the infinite oblivion shattered you like a jar.
There was the black solitude of the islands,
and there, woman of love, your arms took me in.
There was thirst and hunger, and you were the fruit.
There were grief and ruins, and you were the miracle.
Ah woman, I do not know how you could contain me
in the earth of your soul, in the cross of your arms!
How terrible and brief my desire was to you!
How difficult and drunken, how tensed and avid.
Cemetery of kisses, there is still fire in your tombs,
still the fruited boughs burn, pecked at by birds.
Oh the bitten mouth, oh the kissed limbs,
oh the hungering teeth, oh the entwined bodies.
Oh the mad coupling of hope and force
in which we merged and despaired.
And the tenderness, light as water and as flour.
And the word scarcely begun on the lips.
This was my destiny and in it was my voyage of my longing,
and in it my longing fell, in you everything sank!
Oh pit of debris, everything fell into you,
what sorrow did you not express, in what sorrow are you not drowned!
From billow to billow you still called and sang.
Standing like a sailor in the prow of a vessel.
You still flowered in songs, you still brike the currents.
Oh pit of debris, open and bitter well.
Pale blind diver, luckless slinger,
lost discoverer, in you everything sank!
It is the hour of departure, the hard cold hour
which the night fastens to all the timetables.
The rustling belt of the sea girdles the shore.
Cold stars heave up, black birds migrate.
Deserted like the wharves at dawn.
Only tremulous shadow twists in my hands.
Oh farther than everything. Oh farther than everything.
It is the hour of departure. Oh abandoned one!
When did they stop putting toys in cereal boxes? When I was little, I remember wandering the cereal aisle (which surely is as American a phenomenon as fireworks on the Fourth of July) and picking my breakfast food based on what the reward was: a Frisbee with the Trix rabbit's face emblazoned on the front. Holographic stickers with the Lucky Charms leprechaun. A mystery decoder wheel. I could suffer through raisin bran for a month if it meant I got a magic ring at the end.
I cannot admit this out loud. In the first place, we are expected to be supermoms these days, instead of admitting that we have flaws. It is tempting to believe that all mothers wake up feeling fresh every morning, never raise their voices, only cook with organic food, and are equally at ease with the CEO and the PTA.
Here's a secret: those mothers don't exist. Most of us-even if we'd never confess-are suffering through the raisin bran in the hopes of a glimpse of that magic ring.
I look very good on paper. I have a family, and I write a newspaper column. In real life, I have to pick superglue out of the carpet, rarely remember to defrost for dinner, and plan to have BECAUSE I SAID SO engraved on my tombstone.
Real mothers wonder why experts who write for Parents and Good Housekeeping-and, dare I say it, the Burlington Free Press-seem to have their acts together all the time when they themselves can barely keep their heads above the stormy seas of parenthood.
Real mothers don't just listen with humble embarrassment to the elderly lady who offers unsolicited advice in the checkout line when a child is throwing a tantrum. We take the child, dump him in the lady's car, and say, "Great. Maybe YOU can do a better job."
Real mothers know that it's okay to eat cold pizza for breakfast.
Real mothers admit it is easier to fail at this job than to succeed.
If parenting is the box of raisin bran, then real mothers know the ratio of flakes to fun is severely imbalanced. For every moment that your child confides in you, or tells you he loves you, or does something unprompted to protect his brother that you happen to witness, there are many more moments of chaos, error, and self-doubt.
Real mothers may not speak the heresy, but they sometimes secretly wish they'd chosen something for breakfast other than this endless cereal.
Real mothers worry that other mothers will find that magic ring, whereas they'll be looking and looking for ages.
Rest easy, real mothers. The very fact that you worry about being a good mom means that you already are one.
Jodi Picoult (House Rules)
We're the unmended, the untended,
cold soldiers of the shoe. We're the neglected,
the never resurrected, agonies of the few.
We're the once kissed, unmissed and always
refused. Because we're the unfinished
and feared and we're never pursued.
And just that easily, on my behalf,
I come around. Because I'm burning.
The beast of War feeds only on the meats of War.
And now I'm for carnage.
Here's how my anguish frees.
Destroy everyone of course. Because I'm unwanted
and unsafe. And I'll take tears away with torments and rape,
killings and fears not even the dead will escape.
Encircling the Guilty, Ashamed, Blameless and
Enslaved. Absolved. Butchering their prejudice.
Patience. Their Value. Because I'm without value.
I'm the coming of every holocaust. Turning no lost.
Rending tissue, sinew and bone. Excepting no suffering.
By me all levees will break. All silos heave.
I will walk heavy.
And I will walk strange.
Because I am too soon.
Because without Her, I am only revolutions
Because I am too soon.
Because without You, I am only revolutions
I'm the prophecy prophecies pass.
Why need dies at last.
How oceans dry. Islands drown.
And skies of salt crash to the ground.
I turn the powerful. Defy the weak.
Only grass grows down abandoned streets.
For a greater economy shall follow Us
and it will be undone.
And a greater autonomy shall follow Us
and it too will be undone.
And a greater feeling shall follow Love
and it too we will blow to dust.
For I am longings without trust. The cycloidal haste
freedom from Hailey forever wastes.
Dust cares for only dust.
And time only for Us.
Because I am too soon.
Because without Her, I am only revolutions
Because I am too soon.
Because without You, I am only revolutions
We are always sixteen...
Mark Z. Danielewski (Only Revolutions)
Someday I will stop being young and wanting stupid tattoos.
There are 7 people in my house. We each have different genders. I cut my hair over the bathroom sink and everything I own has a hole in it. There is a banner in our living room that says “Love Cats Hate Capitalism.” We sit around the kitchen table and argue about the compost pile and Karl Marx and the necessity of violence when The Rev comes. Whatever the fuck The Rev means.
Every time my best friend laughs I want to grab him by the shoulders and shout “Grow old with me and never kiss me on the mouth!” I want us to spend the next 80 years together eating Doritos and riding bikes. I want to be Oscar the Grouch. I want him and his girlfriend to be Bert and Ernie. I want us to live on Sesame Street and I will park my trash can on their front stoop and we will be friends every day. If I ever seem grouchy it’s just because I am a little afraid of all that fun.
There is a river running through this city I know as well as my own name. It’s the first place I’ve ever called home. I don’t think its poetry to say I’m in love with the water. I don’t think it’s poetry to say I’m in love with the train tracks. I don’t think it’s blasphemy to say I see God in the skyline.
There is always cold beer asking to be slurped on back porches.
There are always crushed packs of Marlboro’s in my back pockets. I have been wearing the same patched-up shorts for 10 days.
Someday I will stop being young and wanting stupid tattoos.
Clementine von Radics
I KNEW IT WAS OVER
when tonight you couldn't make the phone ring
when you used to make the sun rise
when trees used to throw themselves
in front of you
to be paper for love letters
that was how i knew i had to do it
swaddle the kids we never had
against january's cold slice
bundle them in winter
clothes they never needed
so i could drop them off at my mom's
even though she lives on the other side of the country
and at this late west coast hour is
assuredly east coast sleeping
her house was lit like a candle
the way homes should be
warm and golden
and the kids ran in
and jumped at the bichon frise
that she never had
they hugged the dog
and the kids were happy
yours and mine
the ones we never had
and my mom was
grand maternal, which is to say, with style
that only comes when you've seen
enough to know grace
like when to pretend it's christmas or
a birthday so
she lit her voice with tiny
lights and pretended
she didn't see me crying
as i drove away
to the hotel connected to the bar
where i ordered the cheapest whisky they had
just because it shares your first name
because they don't make a whisky
and i only thought what i got
i toasted the hangover
inevitable as sun
that used to rise
in your name
i toasted the carnivals
we never went to
and the things you never won
the ferris wheels we never
kissed on and all the dreams
that sat there
like balloons on a carney's board
waiting to explode with passion
but slowly deflated
under the pin-
prick of a tack
when it doesn't
work, like me
at last call
after too many cheap
too many sweet
whisky makes me
sick, like the smell of cheap,
like the smell of
like the cheap, dead flowers
you never sent
that i never threw
out of the window
of a car
Daphne Gottlieb (Final Girl)
Yes, such has been my lot since childhood. Everyone read signs of non-existent evil traits in my features. But since they were expected to be there, they did make their appearance. Because I was reserved, they said I was sly, so I grew reticent. I was keenly aware of good and evil, but instead of being indulged I was insulted and so I became spiteful. I was sulky while other children were merry and talkative, but though I felt superior to them I was considered inferior. So I grew envious. I was ready to love the whole world, but no one understood me, and I learned to hate. My cheerless youth passed in conflict with myself and society, and fearing ridicule I buried my finest feelings deep in my heart, and there they died. I spoke the truth, but nobody believed me, so I began to practice duplicity. Having come to know society and its mainsprings, I became versed in the art of living and saw how others were happy without that proficiency, enjoying for free the favors I had so painfully striven for. It was then that despair was born in my heart--not the despair that is cured with a pistol, but a cold, impotent desperation, concealed under a polite exterior and a good-natured smile. I became a moral cripple; I had lost one half of my soul, for it had shriveled, dried up and died, and I had cut it off and cast it away, while the other half stirred and lived, adapted to serve every comer. No one noticed this, because no one suspected there had been another half. Now, however, you have awakened memories of it in me, and what I have just done is to read its epitaph to you. Many regard all epitaphs as ridiculous, but I do not, particularly when I remember what rests beneath them.
Mikhail Lermontov (A Hero of Our Time)
Hatred is a bitter, damaging emotion. It winds itself through the blood, infecting its host and driving it forward without any reason. Its view is jaundiced and it skews even the clearest of eye sights. Sacrifice is noble and tender. It’s the action of a host who values others above himself. Sacrifice is bought through love and decency. It is truly heroic. Vengeance is an act of violence. It allows those who have been wronged to take back some of what was lost to them. Unlike sacrifice, it gives back to the one who practices it. Love is deceitful and sublime. In its truest form, it brings out the best in all beings. At its worst, it’s a tool used to manipulate and ruin anyone who is stupid enough to hold it. Don’t be stupid. Sacrifice is for the weak. Hatred corrupts. Love destroys. Vengeance is the gift of the strong. Move forward, not with hatred, not with love. Move forward with purpose. Take back what was stolen. Make those who laughed at your pain pay. Not with hatred, but with calm, cold rationale. Hatred is your enemy. Vengeance is your friend. Hold it close and let it loose. May the gods have mercy on those who have wronged me because I will have no mercy for them. (Xypher)
Sherrilyn Kenyon (Dream Chaser (Dark-Hunter, #13; Dream-Hunter, #3))
Young people, Lord. Do they still call it infatuation? That magic ax that chops away the world in one blow, leaving only the couple standing there trembling? Whatever they call it, it leaps over anything, takes the biggest chair, the largest slice, rules the ground wherever it walks, from a mansion to a swamp, and its selfishness is its beauty. Before I was reduced to singsong, I saw all kinds of mating. Most are two-night stands trying to last a season. Some, the riptide ones, claim exclusive right to the real name, even though everybody drowns in its wake. People with no imagination feed it with sex—the clown of love. They don’t know the real kinds, the better kinds, where losses are cut and everybody benefits. It takes a certain intelligence to love like that—softly, without props. But the world is such a showpiece, maybe that’s why folks try to outdo it, put everything they feel onstage just to prove they can think up things too: handsome scary things like fights to the death, adultery, setting sheets afire. They fail, of course. The world outdoes them every time. While they are busy showing off, digging other people’s graves, hanging themselves on a cross, running wild in the streets, cherries are quietly turning from greed to red, oysters are suffering pearls, and children are catching rain in their mouths expecting the drops to be cold but they’re not; they are warm and smell like pineapple before they get heavier and heavier, so heavy and fast they can’t be caught one at a time. Poor swimmers head for shore while strong ones wait for lightning’s silver veins. Bottle-green clouds sweep in, pushing the rain inland where palm trees pretend to be shocked by the wind. Women scatter shielding their hair and men bend low holding the women’s shoulders against their chests. I run too, finally. I say finally because I do like a good storm. I would be one of those people in the weather channel leaning into the wind while lawmen shout in megaphones: ‘Get moving!
Toni Morrison (Love)
What was she thinking?” muttered Alexander, closing his eyes and imagining his Tania.
“She was determined. It was like some kind of a personal crusade with her,” Ina said. “She gave the doctor a liter of blood for you—”
“Where did she get it from?”
“Herself, of course.” Ina smiled. “Lucky for you, Major, our Nurse Metanova is a universal donor.”
Of course she is, thought Alexander, keeping his eyes tightly shut.
Ina continued. “The doctor told her she couldn’t give any more, and she said a liter wasn’t enough, and he said, ‘Yes, but you don’t have more to give,’ and she said, ‘I’ll make more,’ and he said, ‘No,’ and she said, ‘Yes,’ and in four hours, she gave him another half-liter of blood.”
Alexander lay on his stomach and listened intently while Ina wrapped fresh gauze on his wound.
He was barely breathing.
“The doctor told her, ‘Tania, you’re wasting your time. Look at his burn. It’s going to get infected.’ There wasn’t enough penicillin to give to you, especially since your blood count was so
low.” Alexander heard Ina chuckle in disbelief. “So I’m making my rounds late that night, and who do I find next to your bed? Tatiana. She’s sitting with a syringe in her arm, hooked up to a
catheter, and I watch her, and I swear to God, you won’t believe it when I tell you, Major, but I see that the catheter is attached to the entry drip in your IV.” Ina’s eyes bulged. “I watch her
draining blood from the radial artery in her arm into your IV. I ran in and said, ‘Are you crazy? Are you out of your mind? You’re siphoning blood from yourself into him?’ She said to me in
her calm, I-won’t-stand-for-any-argument voice, ‘Ina, if I don’t, he will die.’ I yelled at her. I said, ‘There are thirty soldiers in the critical wing who need sutures and bandages and their wounds cleaned. Why don’t you take care of them and let God take care of the dead?’ And she said, ‘He’s not dead. He is still alive, and while he is alive, he is mine.’ Can you believe it, Major? But that’s what she said. ‘Oh, for God’s sake,’ I said to her. ‘Fine, die yourself. I don’t care.’ But the next morning I went to complain to Dr. Sayers that she wasn’t following procedure,
told him what she had done, and he ran to yell at her.” Ina lowered her voice to a sibilant, incredulous whisper. “We found her unconscious on the floor by your bed. She was in a dead faint, but you had taken a turn for the better. All your vital signs were up. And Tatiana got up from the floor, white as death itself, and said to the doctor coldly, ‘Maybe now you can give him the penicillin he needs?’ I could see the doctor was stunned. But he did. Gave you penicillin and more plasma and extra morphine. Then he operated on you, to get bits of the shell fragment out
of you, and saved your kidney. And stitched you. And all that time she never left his side, or yours. He told her your bandages needed to be changed every three hours to help with drainage,
to prevent infection. We had only two nurses in the terminal wing, me and her. I had to take care of all the other patients, while all she did was take care of you. For fifteen days and nights she unwrapped you and cleaned you and changed your dressings. Every three hours. She was a ghost by the end. But you made it. That’s when we moved you to critical care. I said to her, ‘Tania, this man ought to marry you for what you did for him,’ and she said, ‘You think so?’ ” Ina tutted again. Paused. “Are you all right, Major? Why are you crying?
Paullina Simons (The Bronze Horseman (The Bronze Horseman, #1))
You weren’t meant for the ice, you weren’t made for the pain.
The world that lives inside of me was not the world you were meant to contain.
You were meant for castles and living in the sun. Thecold running through me should have made you run.
Yet you stay. Holding onto me, yet you stay, reachingout a hand that I push away. The cold is not meant for you yet you stay, you stay, you stay. When I know it’s not right for you.
The ice fills my veins and I can’t feel the pain, yet you’re there like the heat that sends me screaming in fear.
I can’t feel the warmth I need to feel the ice. I want to hold it all in and numb it till I can’t feel the knife.
Your heat threatens to melt it all and I know I can’t bear the pain if the ice melts away.
So I push you away and I scream out your name and I know I can’t need you yet you give anyway and I run wishing you would run too.
Yet you stay. Holding onto me yet you stay reaching out a hand that I push away. The cold is not meant for you yet you stay, you stay, you stay. When I know it’s not right for you.
The blackness is my shield. I pull it closer still.
You’re the light that I hide from, the light that I hate.
You’re the light to this darkness and I can’t let you stay.
I need the dark around me like I need the ice in my veins.
The cold is my healer. The cold is my safe place. Youaren’t welcome with your heat you don’t belong beside me.
I hate you yet I love, I don’t want you yet I need you.
The dark will always be my cloak and you are the threat to unveil my pain, so leave. Leave and erase the memories.
I need to face the life that’s meant for me. Don’t stay and ruin all my plans.
You can’t have my soul I’m not a man.
The empty vessel I dwell in is not meant to feel the heat you bring. I push you away and I push you away.
Yet you stay.
Abbi Glines (Existence (Existence, #1))
I smiled sweetly at his embarressment, beginning to walk again, kicking up golden leaves. I heard him scuffling leaves behind me. "And what was the point of this again?"
Forget it!" Sam said. "Do you you like this place or not?"
I stoped in my tracks, spinning to face him. "Hey." I pointed at him; he raised his eyebrows and stopped in his tracks. "You didn't think Jack would be here at all, did you?"
His thick black eyebrows went up even farther.
Did you evan intend to look for him at all?"
He held his hands up as if a surrender. "What do you want me to say?"
You were trying to see if I would reconize it, wern't you?" I took anouther step, colsing the distance between us. I could feel the heat of his body, even without touching him, in the increasing cold of the day. "YOU told me about this wood somehow. How did you show it to me?"
I keep trying to tell you. You wont listen. Because you're stubbon. It's how we speek- it's the only words we have. Just pictures. Just simple little picters. You HAVE changed Grace. Just not your skin. I want you to believe me." His hands were still raise, but he was starting to grin at me in the failing light.
So you brought me here to see this." I stepped forward again, and he stepped back.
Do you like it?"
Under false pretence." Anouther step forward; anouther back. The grine widened
So do you like it?"
When you knew we wouldn't come across anybody else."
His teeth flashed in his grin. "Do you like it?"
I punched my hands into his chest. "You know I love it. You knew I would." I went to punch him, and he grabed my wrists. For a moment we stood there like that, him looking down at me with a grin half-caught on his face, and me lookingup at him: Still Life with Boy and Girl. It would've been the perfect moment to kiss me, but he didn't. He just looked at me and looked at me, and by the time I relizeed I could just as easily kiss him, I noticed that his grin was slipping away.
Sam slowly lowered my wrists and relesed them. "I'm glad." he said very quietly.
My arms still hung by my sides, right where Sam had put them. I frowned at him. "You were supposed to kiss me."
I thought about it."
I just kept looking at the soft, sad shape of his lips, looking just like his voice sounded. I was probably staring, but I couldn't stop thinking about how much I wanted him to kiss me and how stupide it was to want it so badly. "Why don't you?"
He leaned over and gave mr the lightest of kisses. His lips, cool and dry, ever so polite and incredibly maddening. "I have to get inside soon," he whispered "It's getting cold
Maggie Stiefvater (Shiver (The Wolves of Mercy Falls, #1))
She's locked up with a spinning wheel
She can't recall what it was like to feel
She says, "This room's gonna be my grave
And there's no one who can save me,"
She sits down to her colored thread
She knows lovers waking up in their beds
She says, "How long can I live this way
Is there someone I can pay to let me go
'Cause I'm half sick of shadows
I want to see the sky
Everyone else can watch as the sun goes down
So why can't I
And it's raining
And the stars are falling from the sky
And the wind
And the wind I know it's cold
I've been waiting
For the day I will surely die
And it's here
And it's here for I've been told
That I'll die before I'm old
And the wind I know it's cold...
She looks up to the mirrored glass
She sees a horse and rider pass
She says, "This man's gonna be my death
'Cause he's all I ever wanted in my life
And I know he doesn't know my name
And that all the girls are all the same to him
But still I've got to get out of this place
'Cause I don't think I can face another night
Where I'm half sick of shadows
And I can't see the sky
Everyone else can watch as the tide comes in
So why can't I
But there's willow trees
And little breezes, waves, and walls, and flowers
And there's moonlight every single night
As I'm locked in these towers
So I'll meet my death
But with my last breath I'll sing to him I love
And he'll see my face in another place,"
And with that the glass above
Her cracked into a million bits
And she cried out, "So the story fits
But then I could have guessed it all along
'Cause now some drama queen is gonna write a song for me,"
She went down to her little boat
And she broke the chains and began to float away
And as the blood froze in her veins she said,
"Well then that explains a thing or two
'Cause I know I'm the cursed one
I know I'm meant to die
Everyone else can watch as their dreams untie
So why can't I
A moth goes into a podiatrist’s office, and the podiatrist’s office says, “What seems to be the problem, moth?”
The moth says “What’s the problem? Where do I begin, man? I go to work for Gregory Illinivich, and all day long I work. Honestly doc, I don’t even know what I’m doing anymore. I don’t even know if Gregory Illinivich knows. He only knows that he has power over me, and that seems to bring him happiness. But I don’t know, I wake up in a malaise, and I walk here and there… at night I…I sometimes wake up and I turn to some old lady in my bed that’s on my arm. A lady that I once loved, doc. I don’t know where to turn to. My youngest, Alexendria, she fell in the…in the cold of last year. The cold took her down, as it did many of us. And my other boy, and this is the hardest pill to swallow, doc. My other boy, Gregarro Ivinalititavitch… I no longer love him. As much as it pains me to say, when I look in his eyes, all I see is the same cowardice that I… that I catch when I take a glimpse of my own face in the mirror. If only I wasn’t such a coward, then perhaps…perhaps I could bring myself to reach over to that cocked and loaded gun that lays on the bedside behind me and end this hellish facade once and for all…Doc, sometimes I feel like a spider, even though I’m a moth, just barely hanging on to my web with an everlasting fire underneath me. I’m not feeling good. And so the doctor says, “Moth, man, you’re troubled. But you should be seeing a psychiatrist. Why on earth did you come here?”
And the moth says, “‘Cause the light was on.
-You know how to call me
although such a noise now
would only confuse the air
Neither of us can forget
the steps we danced
the words you stretched
to call me out of dust
Yes I long for you
not just as a leaf for weather
or vase for hands
but with a narrow human longing
that makes a man refuse
any fields but his own
I wait for you at an
unexpected place in your journey
like the rusted key
or the feather you do not pick up.-
-I WILL NEVER FIND THE FACES
FOR ALL GOODBYES I'VE MADE.-
For Anyone Dressed in Marble
The miracle we all are waiting for
is waiting till the Parthenon falls down
and House of Birthdays is a house no more
and fathers are unpoisoned by renown.
The medals and the records of abuse
can't help us on our pilgrimage to lust,
but like whips certain perverts never use,
compel our flesh in paralysing trust.
I see an orphan, lawless and serene,
standing in a corner of the sky,
body something like bodies that have been,
but not the scar of naming in his eye.
Bred close to the ovens, he's burnt inside.
Light, wind, cold, dark -- they use him like a bride.
I Had It for a Moment
I had it for a moment
I knew why I must thank you
I saw powerful governing men in black suits
I saw them undressed
in the arms of young mistresses
the men more naked than the naked women
the men crying quietly
No that is not it
I'm losing why I must thank you
which means I'm left with pure longing
How old are you
Do you like your thighs
I had it for a moment
I had a reason for letting the picture
of your mouth destroy my conversation
Something on the radio
the end of a Mexican song
I saw the musicians getting paid
they are not even surprised
they knew it was only a job
Now I've lost it completely
A lot of people think you are beautiful
How do I feel about that
I have no feeling about that
I had a wonderful reason for not merely
It was tied up with the newspapers
I saw secret arrangements in high offices
I saw men who loved their worldliness
even though they had looked through
big electric telescopes
they still thought their worldliness was serious
not just a hobby a taste a harmless affectation
they thought the cosmos listened
I was suddenly fearful
one of their obscure regulations
could separate us
I was ready to beg for mercy
Now I'm getting into humiliation
I've lost why I began this
I wanted to talk about your eyes
I know nothing about your eyes
and you've noticed how little I know
I want you somewhere safe
far from high offices
I'll study you later
So many people want to cry quietly beside you
Leonard Cohen (Flowers for Hitler)
A Kite is a Victim
A kite is a victim you are sure of.
You love it because it pulls
gentle enough to call you master,
strong enough to call you fool;
because it lives
like a desperate trained falcon
in the high sweet air,
and you can always haul it down
to tame it in your drawer.
A kite is a fish you have already caught
in a pool where no fish come,
so you play him carefully and long,
and hope he won't give up,
or the wind die down.
A kite is the last poem you've written
so you give it to the wind,
but you don't let it go
until someone finds you
something else to do.
A kite is a contract of glory
that must be made with the sun,
so you make friends with the field
the river and the wind,
then you pray the whole cold night before,
under the travelling cordless moon,
to make you worthy and lyric and pure.
You tell me that silence
is nearer to peace than poems
but if for my gift
I brought you silence
(for I know silence)
you would say
This is not silence
this is another poem
and you would hand it back to me
There are some men
There are some men
who should have mountains
to bear their names through time
Grave markers are not high enough
and sons go far away to lose the fist
their father’s hand will always seem
I had a friend he lived and died
in mighty silence and with dignity
left no book son or lover to mourn.
Nor is this a mourning song
but only a naming of this mountain
on which I walk
fragrant, dark and softly white
under the pale of mist
I name this mountain after him.
-Believe nothing of me
Except that I felt your beauty
more closely than my own.
I did not see any cities burn,
I heard no promises of endless night,
I felt your beauty
more closely than my own.
Promise me that I will return.-
-When you call me close
to tell me
your body is not beautiful
I want to summon
the eyes and hidden mouths
of stone and light and water
to testify against you.-
I almost went to bed
the four white violets
I put in the button-hole
of your green sweater
and how i kissed you then
and you kissed me
shy as though I'd
never been your lover
-Reach into the vineyard of arteries for my heart.
Eat the fruit of ignorance and share with me the mist and
fragrance of dying.-
Leonard Cohen (The Spice-Box of Earth)
The Western States nervous under the beginning change.
Texas and Oklahoma, Kansas and Arkansas, New Mexico,
Arizona, California. A single family moved from the land.
Pa borrowed money from the bank, and now the bank wants
the land. The land company--that's the bank when it has land
--wants tractors, not families on the land. Is a tractor bad? Is
the power that turns the long furrows wrong? If this tractor
were ours it would be good--not mine, but ours. If our tractor
turned the long furrows of our land, it would be good.
Not my land, but ours. We could love that tractor then as
we have loved this land when it was ours. But the tractor
does two things--it turns the land and turns us off the land.
There is little difference between this tractor and a tank.
The people are driven, intimidated, hurt by both. We must think
One man, one family driven from the land; this rusty car
creaking along the highway to the west. I lost my land, a
single tractor took my land. I am alone and bewildered.
And in the night one family camps in a ditch and another
family pulls in and the tents come out. The two men squat
on their hams and the women and children listen. Here is the
node, you who hate change and fear revolution. Keep these
two squatting men apart; make them hate, fear, suspect each
other. Here is the anlarge of the thing you fear. This is the
zygote. For here "I lost my land" is changed; a cell is split
and from its splitting grows the thing you hate--"We lost our
land." The danger is here, for two men are not as lonely and
perplexed as one. And from this first "we" there grows a still
more dangerous thing: "I have a little food" plus "I have
none." If from this problem the sum is "We have a little
food," the thing is on its way, the movement has direction.
Only a little multiplication now, and this land, this tractor are
ours. The two men squatting in a ditch, the little fire, the side-
meat stewing in a single pot, the silent, stone-eyed women;
behind, the children listening with their souls to words their
minds do not understand. The night draws down. The baby
has a cold. Here, take this blanket. It's wool. It was my mother's
blanket--take it for the baby. This is the thing to bomb.
This is the beginning--from "I" to "we."
If you who own the things people must have could understand
this, you might preserve yourself. If you could separate
causes from results, if you could know Paine, Marx,
Jefferson, Lenin, were results, not causes, you might survive.
But that you cannot know. For the quality of owning freezes
you forever into "I," and cuts you off forever from the "we."
The Western States are nervous under the begining
change. Need is the stimulus to concept, concept to action.
A half-million people moving over the country; a million
more restive, ready to move; ten million more feeling the
And tractors turning the multiple furrows in the vacant land.
John Steinbeck (The Grapes of Wrath)
I shall never get out of this! There are two of me now:
This new absolutely white person and the old yellow one,
And the white person is certainly the superior one.
She doesn't need food, she is one of the real saints.
At the beginning I hated her, she had no personality --
She lay in bed with me like a dead body
And I was scared, because she was shaped just the way I was
Only much whiter and unbreakable and with no complaints.
I couldn't sleep for a week, she was so cold.
I blamed her for everything, but she didn't answer.
I couldn't understand her stupid behavior!
When I hit her she held still, like a true pacifist.
Then I realized what she wanted was for me to love her:
She began to warm up, and I saw her advantages.
Without me, she wouldn't exist, so of course she was grateful.
I gave her a soul, I bloomed out of her as a rose
Blooms out of a vase of not very valuable porcelain,
And it was I who attracted everybody's attention,
Not her whiteness and beauty, as I had at first supposed.
I patronized her a little, and she lapped it up --
You could tell almost at once she had a slave mentality.
I didn't mind her waiting on me, and she adored it.
In the morning she woke me early, reflecting the sun
From her amazingly white torso, and I couldn't help but notice
Her tidiness and her calmness and her patience:
She humored my weakness like the best of nurses,
Holding my bones in place so they would mend properly.
In time our relationship grew more intense.
She stopped fitting me so closely and seemed offish.
I felt her criticizing me in spite of herself,
As if my habits offended her in some way.
She let in the drafts and became more and more absent-minded.
And my skin itched and flaked away in soft pieces
Simply because she looked after me so badly.
Then I saw what the trouble was: she thought she was immortal.
She wanted to leave me, she thought she was superior,
And I'd been keeping her in the dark, and she was resentful --
Wasting her days waiting on a half-corpse!
And secretly she began to hope I'd die.
Then she could cover my mouth and eyes, cover me entirely,
And wear my painted face the way a mummy-case
Wears the face of a pharaoh, though it's made of mud and water.
I wasn't in any position to get rid of her.
She'd supported me for so long I was quite limp --
I had forgotten how to walk or sit,
So I was careful not to upset her in any way
Or brag ahead of time how I'd avenge myself.
Living with her was like living with my own coffin:
Yet I still depended on her, though I did it regretfully.
I used to think we might make a go of it together --
After all, it was a kind of marriage, being so close.
Now I see it must be one or the other of us.
She may be a saint, and I may be ugly and hairy,
But she'll soon find out that that doesn't matter a bit.
I'm collecting my strength; one day I shall manage without her,
And she'll perish with emptiness then, and begin to miss me.
--written 26 Feburary 1961
Sylvia Plath (The Collected Poems)
Once upon a time, there lived a boy and a girl. The boy was eighteen and the girl sixteen. He was not unusually handsome, and she was not especially beautiful. They were just an ordinary lonely boy and an ordinary lonely girl, like all the others. But they believed with their whole hearts that somewhere in the world there lived the 100% perfect boy and the 100% perfect girl for them. Yes, they believed in a miracle. And that miracle actually happened.
One day the two came upon each other on the corner of a street.
“This is amazing,” he said. “I’ve been looking for you all my life. You may not believe this, but you’re the 100% perfect girl for me.”
“And you,” she said to him, “are the 100% perfect boy for me, exactly as I’d pictured you in every detail. It’s like a dream.”
They sat on a park bench, held hands, and told each other their stories hour after hour. They were not lonely anymore. They had found and been found by their 100% perfect other. What a wonderful thing it is to find and be found by your 100% perfect other. It’s a miracle, a cosmic miracle.
As they sat and talked, however, a tiny, tiny sliver of doubt took root in their hearts: Was it really all right for one’s dreams to come true so easily?
And so, when there came a momentary lull in their conversation, the boy said to the girl, “Let’s test ourselves - just once. If we really are each other’s 100% perfect lovers, then sometime, somewhere, we will meet again without fail. And when that happens, and we know that we are the 100% perfect ones, we’ll marry then and there. What do you think?”
“Yes,” she said, “that is exactly what we should do.”
And so they parted, she to the east, and he to the west.
The test they had agreed upon, however, was utterly unnecessary. They should never have undertaken it, because they really and truly were each other’s 100% perfect lovers, and it was a miracle that they had ever met. But it was impossible for them to know this, young as they were. The cold, indifferent waves of fate proceeded to toss them unmercifully.
One winter, both the boy and the girl came down with the season’s terrible inluenza, and after drifting for weeks between life and death they lost all memory of their earlier years. When they awoke, their heads were as empty as the young D. H. Lawrence’s piggy bank.
They were two bright, determined young people, however, and through their unremitting efforts they were able to acquire once again the knowledge and feeling that qualified them to return as full-fledged members of society. Heaven be praised, they became truly upstanding citizens who knew how to transfer from one subway line to another, who were fully capable of sending a special-delivery letter at the post office. Indeed, they even experienced love again, sometimes as much as 75% or even 85% love.
Time passed with shocking swiftness, and soon the boy was thirty-two, the girl thirty.
One beautiful April morning, in search of a cup of coffee to start the day, the boy was walking from west to east, while the girl, intending to send a special-delivery letter, was walking from east to west, but along the same narrow street in the Harajuku neighborhood of Tokyo. They passed each other in the very center of the street. The faintest gleam of their lost memories glimmered for the briefest moment in their hearts. Each felt a rumbling in their chest. And they knew:
She is the 100% perfect girl for me.
He is the 100% perfect boy for me.
But the glow of their memories was far too weak, and their thoughts no longer had the clarity of fouteen years earlier. Without a word, they passed each other, disappearing into the crowd. Forever.
A sad story, don’t you think?
Haruki Murakami (The Elephant Vanishes)