Cut Off Quotes

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Did you know that 'I told you so' has a brother,Jacob?" she asked cutting me off. "His name is 'Shut the hell up'.
Stephenie Meyer (Breaking Dawn (The Twilight Saga, #4))
Narrow minds devoid of imagination. Intolerance, theories cut off from reality, empty terminology, usurped ideals, inflexible systems. Those are the things that really frighten me. What I absolutely fear and loathe.
Haruki Murakami (Kafka on the Shore)
I cut an inch off of every straw I see, just to make the world suck a little less.

Jarod Kintz (This Book Has No Title)
You're an interesting species. An interesting mix. You're capable of such beautiful dreams, and such horrible nightmares. You feel so lost, so cut off, so alone, only you're not. See, in all our searching, the only thing we've found that makes the emptiness bearable, is each other.
Carl Sagan (Contact)
I will tell you what Jeanne was like. She was like a piano in a country where everyone has had their hands cut off.
Angela Carter
It is true, we shall be monsters, cut off from all the world; but on that account we shall be more attached to one another.
Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley (Frankenstein)
Two words. Three vowels. Four constenants. Seven letters. It can either cut you open to the core and leave you in ungodly pain or it can free your soul and lift a tremendous weight off you shoulders. The phrase is: It's over.
Maggi Richard
I cut off his fingers to get him to talk, and when he'd confessed everything I wanted to hear, I had his fucking tongue cut out, and the stump cauterized." Everyone in the room stared at him. "I called him an asshole, too," said Locke. "He didn't like that.
Scott Lynch (The Lies of Locke Lamora (Gentleman Bastard, #1))
Before we go, I gotta know: If mind-reading abilities are real, there's something else I wondered if fiction got right about vampires-" "Ask me if I sparkle and I'll kill you where you stand," Bones cut him off with utmost seriousness.
Jeaniene Frost (This Side of the Grave (Night Huntress, #5))
When you argue against Him you are arguing against the very power that makes you able to argue at all: it is like cutting off the branch you are sitting on.
C.S. Lewis (Mere Christianity)
I wouldn't cut you out of my life Clary, any more than I would cut off my right hand and give it to someone as a Valentine's Day gift." Gross," said Clary. "Must you?" Simon grinned. "I must.
Cassandra Clare (City of Glass (The Mortal Instruments, #3))
The truly creative mind in any field is no more than this: A human creature born abnormally, inhumanly sensitive. To him... a touch is a blow, a sound is a noise, a misfortune is a tragedy, a joy is an ecstasy, a friend is a lover, a lover is a god, and failure is death. Add to this cruelly delicate organism the overpowering necessity to create, create, create -- so that without the creating of music or poetry or books or buildings or something of meaning, his very breath is cut off from him. He must create, must pour out creation. By some strange, unknown, inward urgency he is not really alive unless he is creating.
Pearl S. Buck
For in grief nothing "stays put." One keeps on emerging from a phase, but it always recurs. Round and round. Everything repeats. Am I going in circles, or dare I hope I am on a spiral? But if a spiral, am I going up or down it? How often -- will it be for always? -- how often will the vast emptiness astonish me like a complete novelty and make me say, "I never realized my loss till this moment"? The same leg is cut off time after time.
C.S. Lewis (A Grief Observed)
I may think of you softly from time to time. But I’ll cut off my hand before I ever reach for you again.
Arthur Miller (The Crucible: A Play in Four Acts)
Your love should never be offered to the mouth of a Stranger / Only to someone who has the valor and daring to cut pieces of their soul off with a knife / Then weave them into a blanket to protect you.
null
Confidence is like a dragon where, for every head cut off, two more heads grow back.
Criss Jami (Venus in Arms)
The quality of owning freezes you forever in "I," and cuts you off forever from the "we.
John Steinbeck (The Grapes of Wrath)
Use your head; cut off theirs.
Max Brooks (Zombie Survival Guide, The: Complete Protection From The Living Dead)
Wish you could turn off the questions, turn off the voices, turn off all sound. Yearn to close out the ugliness, close out the filthiness, close out all light. Long to cast away yesterday, cast away memory, cast away all jeapordy. Pray you could somehow stop uncertainty, somehow stop the loathing, somehow stop the pain. Act on your impulse, swallow the bottle, cut a little deeper, put the gun to your chest.
Ellen Hopkins (Impulse (Impulse, #1))
You cut yourself off from all sorts of experiences because you tell yourself you are ‘not that sort of person’” “But, I’m not.” “How do you know? You’ve done nothing, been nowhere. How do you have the faintest idea what kind of person you are?
Jojo Moyes (Me Before You (Me Before You, #1))
Wholeness is not achieved by cutting off a portion of one’s being, but by integration of the contraries.
C.G. Jung
If you develop an ear for sounds that are musical it is like developing an ego. You begin to refuse sounds that are not musical and that way cut yourself off from a good deal of experience.
John Cage
Love fills everything. It cannot be desired because it is an end in itself. It cannot betray because it has nothing to do with possession. It cannot be held prisoner because it is a river and will overflow its banks. Anyone who tries to imprison love will cut off the spring that feeds it, and the trapped water will grow stagnant.
Paulo Coelho (The Witch of Portobello)
They are children, Sansa thought. They are silly little girls, even Elinor. They’ve never seen a battle, they’ve never seen a man die, they know nothing. Their dreams were full of songs and stories, the way hers had been before Joffrey cut her fathers head off. Sansa pitied them. Sansa envied them.
George R.R. Martin (A Storm of Swords (A Song of Ice and Fire, #3))
Funeral Blues Stop all the clocks, cut off the telephone, Prevent the dog from barking with a juicy bone, Silence the pianos and with muffled drum Bring out the coffin, let the mourners come. Let aeroplanes circle moaning overhead Scribbling on the sky the message He is Dead, Put crêpe bows round the white necks of the public doves, Let the traffic policemen wear black cotton gloves. He was my North, my South, my East and West, My working week and my Sunday rest, My noon, my midnight, my talk, my song; I thought that love would last for ever: I was wrong. The stars are not wanted now; put out every one, Pack up the moon and dismantle the sun; Pour away the ocean and sweep up the wood; For nothing now can ever come to any good.
W.H. Auden (Another Time)
Unbelievable. Every girl at this college would cut her frickin’ arm off to help me out. But this one? Runs away like I just asked her to murder a cat so we could sacrifice it to Satan.
Elle Kennedy (The Deal (Off-Campus, #1))
when your little girl asks you if she’s pretty your heart will drop like a wineglass on the hardwood floor part of you will want to say of course you are, don’t ever question it and the other part the part that is clawing at you will want to grab her by her shoulders look straight into the wells of her eyes until they echo back to you and say you do not have to be if you don’t want to it is not your job both will feel right one will feel better she will only understand the first when she wants to cut her hair off or wear her brother’s clothes you will feel the words in your mouth like marbles you do not have to be pretty if you don’t want to it is not your job
Caitlyn Siehl
We all screw up. Everyone makes mistakes. That’s what she did. It was bad judgment, that’s all. You don’t cut off the people you love for mistakes like that.
Richelle Mead (The Golden Lily (Bloodlines, #2))
Can I cut off your head?" "Are you asking for my permission?
Amanda Hocking (Ascend (Trylle, #3))
Quentin Tarantino is interested in watching somebody's ear getting cut off; David Lynch is interested in the ear.
David Foster Wallace (A Supposedly Fun Thing I'll Never Do Again: Essays and Arguments)
I should like to know which is worse: to be ravished a hundred times by pirates, and have a buttock cut off, and run the gauntlet of the Bulgarians, and be flogged and hanged in an auto-da-fe, and be dissected, and have to row in a galley -- in short, to undergo all the miseries we have each of us suffered -- or simply to sit here and do nothing?' That is a hard question,' said Candide.
Voltaire (Candide)
Sometimes we just have to cut off the dead branches in our life. Sometimes that's the only way we can keep the tree alive. It's hard and it hurts, but it's what's best.
Nicole Williams (Lost & Found (Lost & Found, #1))
Wilderness is not a luxury but a necessity of the human spirit, and as vital to our lives as water and good bread. A civilization which destroys what little remains of the wild, the spare, the original, is cutting itself off from its origins and betraying the principle of civilization itself.
Edward Abbey (Desert Solitaire)
When she came to her senses again she cut off all contact with him. It had not been easy, but she had steeled herself. The last time she saw him she was standing on a platform in the tunnelbana at Gamla Stan and he was sitting in the train on his way downtown. She had stared at him for a whole minute and decided that she did not have a grain of feeling left, because it would have been the same as bleeding to death. Fuck you.
Stieg Larsson (The Girl Who Played with Fire (Millennium, #2))
I love how you aren't weird and awkward, despite the fact that you've been severely cut off from socialization to the point where you make the Amish look trendy.
Colleen Hoover (Hopeless (Hopeless, #1))
Who's Kreacher?" "The house-elf who lives here," said Ron. "Nutter. Never met one like him." "He is not a nutter," said Hermione. "His life's ambition is to have his head cut off and stuck up on a plaque like his mother", said Ron. "Is that normal, Hermione?
J.K. Rowling (Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix (Harry Potter, #5))
If I weren't standing next to your boyfriend, I'd be tempted to ask you out myself." She blushes, and St. Clair bounds inside the box office and wrestles her into a hug. "Miiiiiiiiine!" he says. "Cut it out." Anna pushes him off, laughing. "You'll get fired. And then I'll have to support your sorry arse for the rest of our lives.
Stephanie Perkins (Lola and the Boy Next Door (Anna and the French Kiss, #2))
There are different wells within your heart. Some fill with each good rain, Others are far too deep for that. In one well You have just a few precious cups of water, That "love" is literally something of yourself, It can grow as slow as a diamond If it is lost. Your love Should never be offered to the mouth of a Stranger, Only to someone Who has the valor and daring To cut pieces of their soul off with a knife Then weave them into a blanket To protect you. There are different wells within us. Some fill with each good rain, Others are far, far too deep For that.
The Divan
Zane was starting to piss him off again. Which was good, he supposed. It meant the urge to lick him all over was passing, at least.
Abigail Roux (Cut & Run (Cut & Run, #1))
Hatred is like a long, dark shadow. Not even the person it falls upon knows where it comes from, in most cases. It is like a two-edged sword. When you cut the other person, you cut yourself. The more violently you hack at the other person, the more violently you hack at yourself. It can often be fatal. But it is not easy to dispose of. Please be careful, Mr.Okada. It is very dangerous. Once it has taken root in your heart, hatred is the most difficult think in the world to shake off.
Haruki Murakami (The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle)
i was music but you had your ears cut off
Rupi Kaur (milk and honey)
I’m nobody’s sidekick,” Annabeth growled. “And, Percy, his accent sounds familiar because he sounds like his mother. We killed her in New Jersey.” Percy frowned. “I’m pretty sure that accent isn’t New Jersey. Who’s his—? Oh.” It all fell into place. Aunty Em’s Garden Gnome Emporium—the lair of Medusa. She’d talked with that same accent, at least until Percy had cut off her head. “Medusa is your mom?” he asked. “Dude, that sucks for you.
Rick Riordan (The Mark of Athena (The Heroes of Olympus, #3))
You want a piece of all this fabulousness?" He gestured to himself. "Well, my best friend comes along with it. I wouldn't cut you out of my life, Clary, any more than I would cut off my right hand and give it to someone as a Valentine's Day gift." "Gross," said Clary. "Must you?" He grinned. "I must.
Cassandra Clare (City of Glass (The Mortal Instruments, #3))
For everything in this journey of life we are on, there is a right wing and a left wing: for the wing of love there is anger; for the wing of destiny there is fear; for the wing of pain there is healing; for the wing of hurt there is forgiveness; for the wing of pride there is humility; for the wing of giving there is taking; for the wing of tears there is joy; for the wing of rejection there is acceptance; for the wing of judgment there is grace; for the wing of honor there is shame; for the wing of letting go there is the wing of keeping. We can only fly with two wings and two wings can only stay in the air if there is a balance. Two beautiful wings is perfection. There is a generation of people who idealize perfection as the existence of only one of these wings every time. But I see that a bird with one wing is imperfect. An angel with one wing is imperfect. A butterfly with one wing is dead. So this generation of people strive to always cut off the other wing in the hopes of embodying their ideal of perfection, and in doing so, have created a crippled race.
C. JoyBell C.
Wesley Rush was the most disgusting womanizing playboy to ever darken the doorstep of Hamilton High… but he was kind of hot. Maybe if you could put him on mute… and cut off his hands… maybe—just maybe—he’d be tolerable then. Otherwise, he was a real piece of shit. Horn dog shit.
Kody Keplinger (The DUFF: Designated Ugly Fat Friend (Hamilton High, #1))
And that is how we are. By strength of will we cut off our inner intuitive knowledge from admitted consciousness. This causes a state of dread, or apprehension, which makes the blow ten times worse when it does fall.
D.H. Lawrence (Lady Chatterley’s Lover)
Depression is a painfully slow, crashing death. Mania is the other extreme, a wild roller coaster run off its tracks, an eight ball of coke cut with speed. It's fun and it's frightening as hell. Some patients - bipolar type I - experience both extremes; other - bipolar type II - suffer depression almost exclusively. But the "mixed state," the mercurial churning of both high and low, is the most dangerous, the most deadly. Suicide too often results from the impulsive nature and physical speed of psychotic mania coupled with depression's paranoid self-loathing.
David Lovelace (Scattershot: My Bipolar Family)
How does this whole guardian angel business work? Am I the only person who can see you? I mean, are you invisible to everyone else?" Patch stared at me like he hoped I wasn't serious.    "You're not invisible?" I squeaked. "You have to get out of here!" I made a movement to push Patch off the bed but was cut short by a searing jab in my ribs. "She'll kill me if she finds you in here. Can you climb trees? Tell me you can climb a tree!"    Patch grinned. "I can fly."    Oh. Right. Well, okay.
Becca Fitzpatrick (Hush, Hush (Hush, Hush, #1))
Yes, my tiara sets off the whole thing nicely," said Auntie Muriel in a rather carrying whisper. "But I must say, Ginevra's dress is far too low-cut." Ginny glanced round, grinning, winked at Harry, then quickly faced the front again.
J.K. Rowling (Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows (Harry Potter, #7))
Listen, street punk. You're a guy, and you're a couple inches taller, and maybe forty pounds heavier, and ooh, you're in a gang. But I've survived ten years of Catholic school, and I will cut you off at your knees without a blink. Do you understand?
James Patterson (Angel (Maximum Ride, #7))
First, Lord: No tattoos. May neither Chinese symbol for truth nor Winnie-the-Pooh holding the FSU logo stain her tender haunches. May she be Beautiful but not Damaged, for it’s the Damage that draws the creepy soccer coach’s eye, not the Beauty. When the Crystal Meth is offered, May she remember the parents who cut her grapes in half And stick with Beer. Guide her, protect her When crossing the street, stepping onto boats, swimming in the ocean, swimming in pools, walking near pools, standing on the subway platform, crossing 86th Street, stepping off of boats, using mall restrooms, getting on and off escalators, driving on country roads while arguing, leaning on large windows, walking in parking lots, riding Ferris wheels, roller-coasters, log flumes, or anything called “Hell Drop,” “Tower of Torture,” or “The Death Spiral Rock ‘N Zero G Roll featuring Aerosmith,” and standing on any kind of balcony ever, anywhere, at any age. Lead her away from Acting but not all the way to Finance. Something where she can make her own hours but still feel intellectually fulfilled and get outside sometimes And not have to wear high heels. What would that be, Lord? Architecture? Midwifery? Golf course design? I’m asking You, because if I knew, I’d be doing it, Youdammit. May she play the Drums to the fiery rhythm of her Own Heart with the sinewy strength of her Own Arms, so she need Not Lie With Drummers. Grant her a Rough Patch from twelve to seventeen. Let her draw horses and be interested in Barbies for much too long, For childhood is short – a Tiger Flower blooming Magenta for one day – And adulthood is long and dry-humping in cars will wait. O Lord, break the Internet forever, That she may be spared the misspelled invective of her peers And the online marketing campaign for Rape Hostel V: Girls Just Wanna Get Stabbed. And when she one day turns on me and calls me a Bitch in front of Hollister, Give me the strength, Lord, to yank her directly into a cab in front of her friends, For I will not have that Shit. I will not have it. And should she choose to be a Mother one day, be my eyes, Lord, that I may see her, lying on a blanket on the floor at 4:50 A.M., all-at-once exhausted, bored, and in love with the little creature whose poop is leaking up its back. “My mother did this for me once,” she will realize as she cleans feces off her baby’s neck. “My mother did this for me.” And the delayed gratitude will wash over her as it does each generation and she will make a Mental Note to call me. And she will forget. But I’ll know, because I peeped it with Your God eyes.
Tina Fey (Bossypants)
We were eighteen and had begun to love life and the world; and we had to shoot it to pieces. The first bomb, the first explosion, burst in our hearts. We are cut off from activity, from striving, from progress. We believe in such things no longer, we believe in the war." - All Quiet On The Western Front, Ch. 5
Erich Maria Remarque
Iz," Alec said tiredly. "It's not like it's one big bad thing. It's a lot of little invisible things. When Magnus and I were traveling, and I'd call from the road, Dad never asked how he was. When I get up to talk in Clave meetings, no one listens, and I don't know if that's because I'm young or if it's because of something else. I saw Mom talking to a friend about her grandchildren and the second I walked into the room they shut up. Irina Cartwright told me it was a pity no one would ever inherit my blue eyes now." He shrugged and looked toward Magnus, who took a hand off the wheel for a moment to place it on Alec's. "It's not like a stab wound you can protect me from. It's a million little paper cuts every day.
Cassandra Clare (City of Lost Souls (The Mortal Instruments, #5))
Let him come to Charcy, with his hithertos and his wherefores, and there he will find me, and with all the might of my kingdom I will scourge him from the field. "And if you want a personal message," said Laurent, "You can tell my uncle boykiller that he can cut the head off every child from here to the capital. It won't make him into a king, it will simply mean he has no one left to fuck.
C.S. Pacat (Captive Prince: Volume Two (Captive Prince, #2))
You might imagine that a person would resort to self-mutilation only under extremes of duress, but once I'd crossed that line the first time, taken that fateful step off the precipice, then almost any reason was a good enough reason, almost any provocation was provocation enough. Cutting was my all-purpose solution.
Caroline Kettlewell (Skin Game)
Grief reunites you with what you've lost. It's a merging; you go with the loved thing or person that's going away. You follow it a far as you can go. But finally,the grief goes away and you phase back into the world. Without him. And you can accept that. What the hell choice is there? You cry, you continue to cry, because you don't ever completely come back from where you went with him -- a fragment broken off your pulsing, pumping heart is there still. A cut that never heals. And if, when it happens to you over and over again in life, too much of your heart does finally go away, then you can't feel grief any more. And then you yourself are ready to die. You'll walk up the inclined ladder and someone else will remain behind grieving for you.
Philip K. Dick (Flow My Tears, the Policeman Said)
Why? You want to know why? Step into a tanning booth and fry yourself for two or three days. After your skin bubbles and peels off, roll in coarse salt, then pull on long underwear woven from spun glass and razor wire. Over that goes your regular clothes, as long as they are tight. Smoke gunpowder and go to school to jump through hoops, sit up and beg, and roll over on command. Listen to the whispers that curl into your head at night, calling you ugly and fat and stupid and bitch and whore and worst of all, "a disappointment." Puke and starve and cut and drink because you don't want to feel any of this. Puke and starve and drink and cut because you need the anesthetic and it works. For a while. But then the anesthetic turns into poison and by then it's too late because you are mainlining it now, straight into your soul. It is rotting you and you can't stop. Look in a mirror and find a ghost. Hear every heartbeat scream that everysinglething is wrong with you. "Why?" is the wrong question. Ask "Why not?
Laurie Halse Anderson (Wintergirls)
How many wives have told their husbands, “I’m fine,” when they really mean, “I want to cut your balls off with a butcher knife”? How many men have told their girlfriends, “You look fine,” when they really mean, “You need to go back to the gym and work out—a lot.” It’s the universal way of saying we’re just peachy—when we’re really anything but.
Emma Chase (Tangled (Tangled, #1))
When you notice someone does something toxic the first time, don't wait for the second time before you address it or cut them off. Many survivors are used to the "wait and see" tactic which only leaves them vulnerable to a second attack. As your boundaries get stronger, the wait time gets shorter. You never have justify your intuition.
Shahida Arabi
Love is no game. People cut their ears off over this stuff. People jump off the Eiffel Tower and sell all their possessions and move to Alaska to live with the grizzly bears, and then they get eaten and nobody hears them when they scream for help. That’s right. Falling in love is pretty much the same thing as being eaten alive by a grizzly bear.
Jess Rothenberg (The Catastrophic History of You and Me)
Brace yourself , Effie." "Jesus Ch-" A grunt cut off the swearing. Wrath poked his head out of the window and whispered , "You're supposed to be a good Catholic. Isn't that blasphemy ?" Butch's tone was like someone had pissed out a fire on his bed. " You just threw half a car at me with nothing but a quote from Mrs. fucking Doubtfire.
J.R. Ward (Lover Avenged (Black Dagger Brotherhood, #7))
Words are not enough. Not mine, cut off at the throat before they breathe. Never forming, broken and swallowed, tossed into the void before they are heard. It would be easy to follow, fall to my knees, prostrate before the deli counter. Sweep the shelves clear, scatter the tins, pound the cakes to powder. Supermarket isles stretching out in macabre displays. Christmas madness, sad songs and mistletoe, packed car parks, rotten leaves banked up in corners. Forgotten reminders of summer before the storm. Never trust a promise, they take prisoners and wishes never come true. Fairy stories can have grim endings and I don’t know how I will face the world without you.
Peter B. Forster (More Than Love, A Husband's Tale)
Naughty John, Naughty John, does his work with his apron on. Cuts your throat and takes your bones, sells 'em off for a coupla stones.
Libba Bray (The Diviners (The Diviners, #1))
It’s four o’clock, guys. I’m going up to watch Oprah. Unless the shop catches fire or we’re under massive zombie invasion, I don’t exist for the next hour. On second thought, don’t bother me if it’s zombies – I’ll deal with them later. Today’s a special episode on how to make peace with people who piss you off. And I definitely need to find my Zen. (Bubba) Your Zen’s shooting stuff, Bubba. Embrace your inner violence. (Mark) Fine, then. My inner violence says I’ll cut your throat if you bother me until Oprah ends, so sod off. (Bubba)
Sherrilyn Kenyon (Infinity (Chronicles of Nick, #1))
She told me to wait,that I was going to lose a finger." Earl looked toward the kitchen and back at Ty and Duece. He snorted. "I asked her, did she think I was stupid? Then a couple of snips later, whack. Off went the finger. And you know what that woman said to me? I said 'Mara you cut my finger off.' And your mother said to me, 'Well Earl who's stupid now?
Abigail Roux (Stars & Stripes (Cut & Run, #6))
Will!” He turned at the familiar voice and saw Tessa. There was a small path cut along the side of the hill, lined with unfamiliar white flowers, and she was walking up it, toward him. Her long brown hair blew in the wind — she had taken off her straw bonnet, and held it in one hand, waving it at him and smiling as if she were glad to see him. His own heart leaped up at the sight of her. “Tess,” he called. But she was still such a distance away — she seemed both very near and very far suddenly and at the same time. He could see every detail of her pretty, upturned face, but could not touch her, and so he stood, waiting and desiring, and his heart beat like the wings of seagulls in his chest. At last she was there, close enough that he could see where the grass and flowers bent beneath the tread of her shoes. He reached out for her —
Cassandra Clare (Clockwork Princess (The Infernal Devices, #3))
When love first happens, the individuals are giving each other energy unconsciously and both people feel buoyant and elated. That's the incredible high we call being ‘in love.’ Unfortunately, once they expect this feeling to come from another person, they cut themselves off from the energy in the universe and begin to rely even more on the energy from each other--only now there doesn’t seem to be enough and so they stop giving each other energy and fall back into their dramas in an attempt to control each other and force the other’s energy their way.
James Redfield (The Celestine Prophecy (Celestine Prophecy, #1))
I didn't get to grow up and pull away from her and bitch about her with my friends and confront her about the things I'd wished she'd done differently and then get older and understand that she had done the best she could and realize that what she had done was pretty damn good and take her fully back into my arms again. Her death had obliterated that. It had obliterated me. It had cut me short at the very heigh of my youthful arrogance. It had forced me to instantly grow up and forgive her every motherly fault at the same time that it kept me forever a child, my life both ended and begun in that premature place where we'd left off. She was my mother, but I was motherless. I was trapped by her, but utterly alone. She would always be the empty bowl that no one could full. I'd have to fill it myself again and again and again.
Cheryl Strayed (Wild: From Lost to Found on the Pacific Crest Trail)
Have a care, Sir Tucker, lest you find yourself in the stockades." He scoffs and looks at Mr. Erikson. "She can't do that, can she? She's not the ruler of this class. Brady is." ... "You could strip him of his title," suggests Brady, apparently not minding at all that I have usurped his throne. "Make him a serf." "Yeah," says Christian. "Make him a serf. Being a serf blows." As a serf, poor Christian has already been killed several times in our class. Aside from dying of the Black Plague on the first day, he's starved to death, had his hands cut off for stealing a loaf of bread, and been run down by his master's horse just for kicks. He's like Christian the fifth now.
Cynthia Hand (Unearthly (Unearthly, #1))
Um, Bella? You've got a huge cut on your forehead, and it's gushing blood," he informed me. I clapped my hand over my head. Sure enough, it was wet and sticky. I could smell nothing but the damp moss on my face, and that held off the nausea. Oh, I'm so sorry, Jacob." I pushed hard against the gash, as if I could force the blood back inside my head. Why are you apologizing for bleeding?" he wondered as he wrapped a long arm around my waist and and pulled me to my feet.
Stephenie Meyer (New Moon (The Twilight Saga, #2))
So, Belle, what's new today?" Dad," I said, grasping his hands and looking directly into his eyes. "I'm in the deepest love that has ever occurred in the history of the world." Gosh, Belle. When someone asks you 'What's new?' the correct answer is 'Not much'. Besides, isn't it a little soon to cut yourself off from the rest of your peers, depending on a boyfriend to satisfy your social needs as opposed to making friends? Imagine what would happen if something forced that boy to leave! I'm imagining pages and pages would happen - with nothing but the names of the months on them.
The Harvard Lampoon (Nightlight: A Parody)
With the passing of time, she would slowly tire of this exercise. She would find it increasingly exhausting to conjure up, to dust off, to resuscitate once again what was long dead. There would come a day, in fact, years later, when [she] would no longer bewail his loss. Or not as relentlessly; not nearly. There would come a day when the details of his face would begin to slip from memory's grip, when overhearing a mother on the street call after her child by [his] name would no longer cut her adrift. She would not miss him as she did now, when the ache of his absence was her unremitting companion--like the phantom pain of an amputee.
Khaled Hosseini (A Thousand Splendid Suns)
Narrow minds devoid of imagination. Intolerance, theories cut off from reality, empty terminology, usurped ideals, inflexible systems. Those are the things that really frighten me. What I absolutely fear and loathe. Of course it’s important to know what’s right and what’s wrong. Individual errors in judgment can usually be corrected. As long as you have the courage to admit mistakes, things can be turned around. But intolerant, narrow minds with no imagination are like parasites that transform the host, change form, and continue to thrive. They’re a lost cause, and I don’t want anyone like that coming in here.
Haruki Murakami (Kafka on the Shore)
Emotional neglect lays the groundwork for the emotional numbing that helps boys feel better about being cut off. Eruptions of rage in boys are most often deemed normal, explained by the age-old justification for adolescent patriarchal misbehavior, "Boys will be boys." Patriarchy both creates the rage in boys and then contains it for later use, making it a resource to exploit later on as boys become men. As a national product, this rage can be garnered to further imperialism, hatred and oppression of women and men globally. This rage is needed if boys are to become men willing to travel around the world to fight wars without ever demanding that other ways of solving conflict can be found.
bell hooks
I will love you with no regard to the actions of our enemies or the jealousies of actors. I will love you with no regard to the outrage of certain parents or the boredom of certain friends. I will love you no matter what is served in the world’s cafeterias or what game is played at each and every recess. I will love you no matter how many fire drills we are all forced to endure, and no matter what is drawn upon the blackboard in blurry, boring chalk. I will love you no matter how many mistakes I make when trying to reduce fractions, and no matter how difficult it is to memorize the periodic table. I will love you no matter what your locker combination was, or how you decided to spend your time during study hall. I will love you no matter how your soccer team performed in the tournament or how many stains I received on my cheerleading uniform. I will love you if I never see you again, and I will love you if I see you every Tuesday. I will love you if you cut your hair and I will love you if you cut the hair of others. I will love you if you abandon your baticeering, and I will love you if you if you retire from the theater to take up some other, less dangerous occupation. I will love you if you drop your raincoat on the floor instead of hanging it up and I will love you if you betray your father. I will love you even if you announce that the poetry of Edgar Guest is the best in the world and even if you announce that the work of Zilpha Keatley Snyder is unbearably tedious. I will love you if you abandon the theremin and take up the harmonica and I will love you if you donate your marmosets to the zoo and your tree frogs to M. I will love you as a starfish loves a coral reef and as a kudzu loves trees, even if the oceans turn to sawdust and the trees fall in the forest without anyone around to hear them. I will love you as the pesto loves the fettuccini and as the horseradish loves the miyagi, as the tempura loves the ikura and the pepperoni loves the pizza. I will love you as the manatee loves the head of lettuce and as the dark spot loves the leopard, as the leech loves the ankle of a wader and as a corpse loves the beak of the vulture. I will love you as the doctor loves his sickest patient and a lake loves its thirstiest swimmer. I will love you as the beard loves the chin, and the crumbs love the beard, and the damp napkin loves the crumbs, and the precious document loves the dampness in the napkin, and the squinting eye of the reader loves the smudged print of the document, and the tears of sadness love the squinting eye as it misreads what is written. I will love you as the iceberg loves the ship, and the passengers love the lifeboat, and the lifeboat loves the teeth of the sperm whale, and the sperm whale loves the flavor of naval uniforms. i will love you as a child loves to overhear the conversations of its parents, and the parents love the sound of their own arguing voices, and as the pen loves to write down the words these voices utter in a notebook for safekeeping. I will love you as a shingle loves falling off a house on a windy day and striking a grumpy person across the chin, and as an oven loves malfunctioning in the middle of roasting a turkey. I will love you as an airplane loves to fall from a clear blue sky and as an escalator loves to entangle expensive scarves in its mechanisms. I will love you as a wet paper towel loves to be crumpled into a ball and thrown at a bathroom ceiling and as an eraser loves to leave dust in the hairdos of people who talk too much. I will love you as a cufflink loves to drop from its shirt and explore the party for itself and as a pair of white gloves loves to slip delicately into the punchbowl. I will love you as the taxi loves the muddy splash of a puddle and as a library loves the patient tick of a clock.
Lemony Snicket
It's like you took a bottle of ink and you threw it at a wall. Smash! And all that ink spread. And in the middle, it's dense, isn't it? And as it gets out on the edge, the little droplets get finer and finer and make more complicated patterns, see? So in the same way, there was a big bang at the beginning of things and it spread. And you and I, sitting here in this room, as complicated human beings, are way, way out on the fringe of that bang. We are the complicated little patterns on the end of it. Very interesting. But so we define ourselves as being only that. If you think that you are only inside your skin, you define yourself as one very complicated little curlique, way out on the edge of that explosion. Way out in space, and way out in time. Billions of years ago, you were a big bang, but now you're a complicated human being. And then we cut ourselves off, and don't feel that we're still the big bang. But you are. Depends how you define yourself. You are actually--if this is the way things started, if there was a big bang in the beginning-- you're not something that's a result of the big bang. You're not something that is a sort of puppet on the end of the process. You are still the process. You are the big bang, the original force of the universe, coming on as whoever you are. When I meet you, I see not just what you define yourself as--Mr so-and- so, Ms so-and-so, Mrs so-and-so--I see every one of you as the primordial energy of the universe coming on at me in this particular way. I know I'm that, too. But we've learned to define ourselves as separate from it.
Alan W. Watts
In Mongolia, when a dog dies, he is buried high in the hills so people cannot walk on his grave. The dog’s master whispers in the dog’s ear his wishes that the dog will return as a man in his next life. Then his tail is cut off and put beneath his head, and a piece of meat of fat is cut off and placed in his mouth to sustain his soul for its journey; before he is reincarnated, the dog’s soul is freed to travel the land, to run across the high desert plains for as long as it would like. I learned that from a program on the National Geographic Channel, so I believe it is true. Not all dogs return as men, they say; only those who are ready. I am ready.
Garth Stein (The Art of Racing in the Rain)
Hey, if you'd wanted to avoid 'this,' you shouldn't have lured me last night. Now it's too late. You might as well avoid the long, drawn-out pain and get it over with quickly. Sort of like taking off a Band-Aid. Or cutting off a limb." "Wow, who says there's no romance left in the world?
Richelle Mead (Succubus Blues (Georgina Kincaid, #1))
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. Ash? “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))
I’m alright,” Loki assured me with a grin and stepped out into the hall, so we could have some privacy from onlookers. “What can I do for you, Princess?” “Can I cut off your head?” I asked. “Are you asking for my permission?” Loki tilted his head and cocked an eyebrow. “Because I’m going to have to say no to this one request, Princess.” “No, I mean, can I?” I asked. “As in, am I capable of it? Would you die if I did?” “Of course I would die.” Loki put one hand against the wall and leaned on it. “I’m not a bloody cockroach. What’s all this about? What are you trying to find out?
Amanda Hocking (Ascend (Trylle, #3))
We are vampires, Kanin had told me, on one of our last nights together. It makes no difference who we are, where we came from. Princes, Masters and rabids alike, we are monsters, cut off from humanity. They will never trust us. They will never accept us. We hide in their midst and walk among them, but we are forever separate. Damned. Alone. You don’t understand now, but you will. There will come a time when the road before you splits, and you must decide your path. Will you choose to become a demon with a human face, or will you fight your demon until the end of time, knowing you will forever struggle alone?
Julie Kagawa (The Immortal Rules (Blood of Eden, #1))
The second we put a bullet in the head of one of those undead monsters -- the moment one of us drove a hammer into one of their faces -- or cut a head off. We became what we are! And that's just it. THAT's what it comes down to. You people don't know what we are. We're surrounded by the DEAD. We're among them -- and when we finally give up we become them! We're living on borrowed time here. Every minute of our life is a minute we steal from them! You see them out there. You KNOW that when we die -- we become them. You think we hide behind walls to protect us from the walking dead? Don't you get it? We ARE the walking dead! WE are the walking dead.
Robert Kirkman (The Walking Dead, Vol. 5: The Best Defense)
A little kid asks my dad why that man is chopping down the tree. Dad: He's not chopping it down. He's saving it. Those branches were long dead from disease. All plants are like that. By cutting off the damage you make it possible for the tree to grow again. You watch - by the end of summer, this tree will be the strongest on the block.
Laurie Halse Anderson (Speak)
Well," he said, "I don't believe that either." "Believe what? That I messed up? Why not?" "Weren't you just listening? I saw you in Spokane. Someone like you doesn't mess up freeze." I was about to give him the same line I had given the guardians, that killing Strigoi didn't make me invincible, but he cut me off: "Plus I saw your face out there." "Out.... on the quad?" "Yeah," several more quite moments passed. "I don't know what happened, but the way you looked...that wasn't the look of someone trying to get back at a person. It wasn't the look of someone blanking out of Alto's attack either. It was something different...I don't know. But you were completely consumed by something else—and honestly? Your expression? Kind of scary." "Yet...you aren't giving me a hard time over that either." "Not my business. If it was big enough to take you over like that, then it must be serious. But if push comes to shove, I feel safe with you, Rose. I know you'd protect me if there really was a Strigoi there." He yawned. "Okay. Now that I have bared my soul, can we please go to bed? Maybe you don't need beauty sleep, but some of us aren't so lucky.
Richelle Mead (Shadow Kiss (Vampire Academy, #3))
The funny thing about mundies," Jace said, to nobody in particular, "is how obsessed with magic they are for a bunch of people who don't even know what the word means." I know what it means," Clary snapped. No, you don't, you just think you do. Magic is a dark elemental force, not just a lot of sparkly wands and crystal balls and talking goldfish." I never said it was a lot of talking goldfish, you-" Jace waved a hand, cutting her off. "Just because you call an electric eel a rubber duck doesn't make it a rubber duck, does it? And God help the poor bastard who decides they want to take a bath with the duckie.
Cassandra Clare
I’m a modern man, a man for the millennium. Digital and smoke free. A diversified multi-cultural, post-modern deconstruction that is anatomically and ecologically incorrect. I’ve been up linked and downloaded, I’ve been inputted and outsourced, I know the upside of downsizing, I know the downside of upgrading. I’m a high-tech low-life. A cutting edge, state-of-the-art bi-coastal multi-tasker and I can give you a gigabyte in a nanosecond! I’m new wave, but I’m old school and my inner child is outward bound. I’m a hot-wired, heat seeking, warm-hearted cool customer, voice activated and bio-degradable. I interface with my database, my database is in cyberspace, so I’m interactive, I’m hyperactive and from time to time I’m radioactive. Behind the eight ball, ahead of the curve, ridin the wave, dodgin the bullet and pushin the envelope. I’m on-point, on-task, on-message and off drugs. I’ve got no need for coke and speed. I've got no urge to binge and purge. I’m in-the-moment, on-the-edge, over-the-top and under-the-radar. A high-concept, low-profile, medium-range ballistic missionary. A street-wise smart bomb. A top-gun bottom feeder. I wear power ties, I tell power lies, I take power naps and run victory laps. I’m a totally ongoing big-foot, slam-dunk, rainmaker with a pro-active outreach. A raging workaholic. A working rageaholic. Out of rehab and in denial! I’ve got a personal trainer, a personal shopper, a personal assistant and a personal agenda. You can’t shut me up. You can’t dumb me down because I’m tireless and I’m wireless, I’m an alpha male on beta-blockers. I’m a non-believer and an over-achiever, laid-back but fashion-forward. Up-front, down-home, low-rent, high-maintenance. Super-sized, long-lasting, high-definition, fast-acting, oven-ready and built-to-last! I’m a hands-on, foot-loose, knee-jerk head case pretty maturely post-traumatic and I’ve got a love-child that sends me hate mail. But, I’m feeling, I’m caring, I’m healing, I’m sharing-- a supportive, bonding, nurturing primary care-giver. My output is down, but my income is up. I took a short position on the long bond and my revenue stream has its own cash-flow. I read junk mail, I eat junk food, I buy junk bonds and I watch trash sports! I’m gender specific, capital intensive, user-friendly and lactose intolerant. I like rough sex. I like tough love. I use the “F” word in my emails and the software on my hard-drive is hardcore--no soft porn. I bought a microwave at a mini-mall; I bought a mini-van at a mega-store. I eat fast-food in the slow lane. I’m toll-free, bite-sized, ready-to-wear and I come in all sizes. A fully-equipped, factory-authorized, hospital-tested, clinically-proven, scientifically- formulated medical miracle. I’ve been pre-wash, pre-cooked, pre-heated, pre-screened, pre-approved, pre-packaged, post-dated, freeze-dried, double-wrapped, vacuum-packed and, I have an unlimited broadband capacity. I’m a rude dude, but I’m the real deal. Lean and mean! Cocked, locked and ready-to-rock. Rough, tough and hard to bluff. I take it slow, I go with the flow, I ride with the tide. I’ve got glide in my stride. Drivin and movin, sailin and spinin, jiving and groovin, wailin and winnin. I don’t snooze, so I don’t lose. I keep the pedal to the metal and the rubber on the road. I party hearty and lunch time is crunch time. I’m hangin in, there ain’t no doubt and I’m hangin tough, over and out!
George Carlin
There’s an organic grocery store just off the highway exit. I can’t remember the last time I went shopping for food.” A smile glittered in his eyes. “I might have gone overboard.” I walked into the kitchen, with gleaming stainless-steel appliances, black granite countertops, and walnut cabinetry. Very masculine, very sleek. I went for the fridge first. Water bottles, spinach and arugula, mushrooms, gingerroot, Gorgonzola and feta cheeses, natural peanut butter, and milk on one side. Hot dogs, cold cuts, Coke, chocolate pudding cups, and canned whipped cream on the other. I tried to picture Patch pushing a shopping cart down the aisle, tossing in food as it pleased him. It was all I could do to keep a straight face.
Becca Fitzpatrick (Silence (Hush, Hush, #3))
It's astonishing the amount of time that certain straight people devote to gay sex - trying to determine what goes where and how often. They can't imagine any system outside their own, and seem obsessed with the idea of roles, both in bed and out of it. Who calls whom a bitch? Who cries harder when the cat dies? Which one spends the most time in the bathroom? I guess they think that it's that cut-and-dried, though of course it's not. Hugh might do the cooking, and actually wear an apron while he's at it, but he also chops the firewood, repairs the hot-water heater, and could tear off my arm with no more effort than it takes to uproot a dandelion.
David Sedaris (When You Are Engulfed in Flames)
And I put my hand on her arm to stop her rowing. Aaron’s Noise roars up in red and black. The current takes us on. “I’m sorry!” I cry as the river takes us away, my words ragged things torn from me, my chest pulled so tight I can’t barely breathe. “I’m sorry, Manchee!” “Todd?” he barks, confused and scared and watching me leave him behind. “Todd?” “Manchee!” I scream. Aaron brings his free hand towards my dog. “MANCHEE!” “Todd?” And Aaron wrenches his arms and there’s a CRACK and a scream and a cut-off yelp that tears my heart in two forever and forever. And the pain is too much it’s too much it’s too much and my hands are on my head and I’m rearing back and my mouth is open in a never-ending wordless wail of all the blackness that’s inside of me.
Patrick Ness (The Knife of Never Letting Go (Chaos Walking, #1))
Take the case of courage. No quality has ever so much addled the brains and tangled the definitions of merely rational sages. Courage is almost a contradiction in terms. It means a strong desire to live taking the form of a readiness to die. 'He that will lose his life, the same shall save it,' is not a piece of mysticism for saints and heroes. It is a piece of everyday advice for sailors or mountaineers. It might be printed in an Alpine guide or a drill book. This paradox is the whole principle of courage; even of quite earthly or brutal courage. A man cut off by the sea may save his life if we will risk it on the precipice. He can only get away from death by continually stepping within an inch of it. A soldier surrounded by enemies, if he is to cut his way out, needs to combine a strong desire for living with a strange carelessness about dying. He must not merely cling to life, for then he will be a coward, and will not escape. He must not merely wait for death, for then he will be a suicide, and will not escape. He must seek his life in a spirit of furious indifference to it; he must desire life like water and yet drink death like wine. No philosopher, I fancy, has ever expressed this romantic riddle with adequate lucidity, and I certainly have not done so. But Christianity has done more: it has marked the limits of it in the awful graves of the suicide and the hero, showing the distance between him who dies for the sake of living and him who dies for the sake of dying.
G.K. Chesterton (Orthodoxy)
I know your character. I know you're going to be a great guardian.” His confidence made that warm feeling return. "I'm glad someone does. Everyone else thinks I'm totally irresponsible.” "With the way you worry more about Lissa than yourself…" He shook his head. "No. You understand your responsibilities better than guardians twice your age. You'll do what you have to do to succeed.” I thought about that. "I don't know if I can do everything I have to do.” He did that cool one-eyebrow thing. "I don't want to cut my hair," I explained. He looked puzzled. "You don't have to cut your hair. It's not required.” "All the other guardian women do. They show off their tattoos.” Unexpectedly, he released my hands and leaned forward. Slowly, he reached out and held a lock of my hair, twisting it around one finger thoughtfully. I froze, and for a moment, there was nothing going on in the world except him touching my hair. He let my hair go, looking a little surprised—and embarrassed—at what he'd done. "Don't cut it," he said gruffly. Somehow, I remembered how to talk again. "But no one'll see my tattoos if I don't.” He moved toward the doorway, a small smile playing over his lips. "Wear it up.
Richelle Mead (Vampire Academy (Vampire Academy, #1))
I lifted my face to meet the kiss, wanting the comfort of his touch as much as I was willing to provide the comfort of mine. The contact was sweet and soft, yet at the same time desperate. It was Zane who pulled away first. "Danica, I think..." He trailed off and kissed me again, this time briefly, just the barest touch of lips to lips. "I love you." From a man who frequently uttered eloquent speeches, the tentative declaration was not the most flattering of compliments-especially when every movement he made and look he cast my way had shown the long truth before now. But coming from the serpent who had once informed me that he did not love me and did not think he ever could, whose cool, polished words could cut to the bone and freeze the Earth's frozen molten blood — whose eyes right now were just a bid dazed, and whose expression was as open and startled as I had ever seen it — the words were more than enough. "I know," I answered. Then, soft but certain, I answered, "I love you too." His smile matched mine and said the same as mine: I know.
Amelia Atwater-Rhodes (Hawksong (The Kiesha'ra, #1))
I have nothing but contempt for the people who despise money. They are hypocrites or fools. Money is like a sixth sense without which you cannot make a complete use of the other five. Without an adequate income half the possibilities of life are shut off. The only thing to be careful about is that you do not pay more than a shilling for the shilling you earn. You will hear people say that poverty is the best spur to the artist. They have never felt the iron of it in their flesh. They do not know how mean it makes you. It exposes you to endless humiliation, it cuts your wings, it eats into your soul like a cancer.
W. Somerset Maugham (Of Human Bondage)
War seems like a fine adventure, the greatest most of them will ever know. Then they get a taste of battle. For some, that one taste is enough to break them. Others go on for years, until they lose count of all the battles they have fought in, but even a man who has survived a hundred fights can break in his hundred-and-first. Brothers watch their brothers die, fathers lose their sons, friends see their friends trying to hold their entrails in after they’ve been gutted by an axe. They see the lord who led them there cut down, and some other lord shouts that they are his now, They take the wound, and when that’s still half-healed they take another. There is never enough to eat, their shoes fall to pieces from marching, their clothes are torn and rotting, and half of them are shitting in their breeches from drinking bad water. If they want new boots or a warmer cloak or maybe a rusted iron half helm, they need to take them from a corpse, and before long they are stealing from the living too, from the small folk whose land they’re fighting in, men very like the men they used to be. They slaughter their sheep and steal their chickens, and from there it’s just a short step to carrying off their daughters too. And one day they look around and realize all their friends and kin are gone, that they are fighting beside strangers beneath a banner that they hardly recognize. They don’t know where they are or how to get back home and the lord they’re fighting for does not know their names, yet here he comes, shouting for them to form up, to make a line with their spears and scythes and sharpened hoes, to stand their ground. And the knights come down on them, faceless men clad in all steel, and the iron thunder of their charge seems to fill the world. And the man breaks.
George R.R. Martin (A Feast for Crows (A Song of Ice and Fire, #4))
There are few of us who have not sometimes wakened before dawn, either after one of those dreamless nights that make us almost enamoured of death, or one of those nights of horror and misshapen joy, when through the chambers of the brain sweep phantoms more terrible than reality itself, and instinct with that vivid life that lurks in all grotesques, and that lends to Gothic art its enduring vitality, this art being, one might fancy, especially the art of those whose minds have been troubled with the malady of reverie. Gradually white fingers creep through the curtains, and they appear to tremble. In black fantastic shapes, dumb shadows crawl into the corners of the room and crouch there. Outside, there is the stirring of birds among the leaves, or the sound of men going forth to their work, or the sigh and sob of the wind coming down from the hills and wandering round the silent house, as though it feared to wake the sleepers and yet must needs call forth sleep from her purple cave. Veil after veil of thin dusky gauze is lifted, and by degrees the forms and colours of things are restored to them, and we watch the dawn remaking the world in its antique pattern. The wan mirrors get back their mimic life. The flameless tapers stand where we had left them, and beside them lies the half-cut book that we had been studying, or the wired flower that we had worn at the ball, or the letter that we had been afraid to read, or that we had read too often. Nothing seems to us changed. Out of the unreal shadows of the night comes back the real life that we had known. We have to resume it where we had left off, and there steals over us a terrible sense of the necessity for the continuance of energy in the same wearisome round of stereotyped habits, or a wild longing, it may be, that our eyelids might open some morning upon a world that had been refashioned anew in the darkness for our pleasure, a world in which things would have fresh shapes and colours, and be changed, or have other secrets, a world in which the past would have little or no place, or survive, at any rate, in no conscious form of obligation or regret, the remembrance even of joy having its bitterness and the memories of pleasure their pain.
Oscar Wilde (The Picture of Dorian Gray)
Can we get back to work now?" Haley asked, sounding innocent, but Zoe didn't miss the woman's lips twitching or the humor sparkling in her eyes. Something told her that this woman truly enjoyed torturing her husband. "For god sake's, my little grasshopper, you love the Yankees more than I do! What the hell is going on?" He turned accusing eyes on Zoe. "How dare you brainwash my wife?" he hissed. "A re you going to leave so that we can get some work done?" Haley demanded, turning her attention to the computer. "No," he said stubbornly, folding his arms over his chest, glaring at them. "Buttercream frosting," Haley said softly, never taking her eyes away from her computer screen. Jason licked his lips as he looked his pregnant wife over hungrily. "Tonight?" he croaked out. "If you're good," Haley said, with a small shrug. "But you have to leave-" "Bye," Jason said quickly, cutting her off and rushing out of the trailer just as fast as he came.
R.L. Mathewson (Perfection (Neighbor from Hell, #2))
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)
How often since then has she wondered what might have happened if she'd tried to remain with him; if she’d returned Richard's kiss on the corner of Bleeker and McDougal, gone off somewhere (where?) with him, never bought the packet of incense or the alpaca coat with rose-shaped buttons. Couldn’t they have discovered something larger and stranger than what they've got. It is impossible not to imagine that other future, that rejected future, as taking place in Italy or France, among big sunny rooms and gardens; as being full of infidelities and great battles; as a vast and enduring romance laid over friendship so searing and profound it would accompany them to the grave and possibly even beyond. She could, she thinks, have entered another world. She could have had a life as potent and dangerous as literature itself. Or then again maybe not, Clarissa tells herself. That's who I was. This is who I am--a decent woman with a good apartment, with a stable and affectionate marriage, giving a party. Venture too far for love, she tells herself, and you renounce citizenship in the country you've made for yourself. You end up just sailing from port to port. Still, there is this sense of missed opportunity. Maybe there is nothing, ever, that can equal the recollection of having been young together. Maybe it's as simple as that. Richard was the person Clarissa loved at her most optimistic moment. Richard had stood beside her at the pond's edge at dusk, wearing cut-off jeans and rubber sandals. Richard had called her Mrs. Dalloway, and they had kissed. His mouth had opened to hers; (exciting and utterly familiar, she'd never forget it) had worked its way shyly inside until she met its own. They'd kissed and walked around the pond together. It had seemed like the beginning of happiness, and Clarissa is still sometimes shocked, more than thirty years later to realize that it was happiness; that the entire experience lay in a kiss and a walk. The anticipation of dinner and a book. The dinner is by now forgotten; Lessing has been long overshadowed by other writers. What lives undimmed in Clarissa's mind more than three decades later is a kiss at dusk on a patch of dead grass, and a walk around a pond as mosquitoes droned in the darkening air. There is still that singular perfection, and it's perfect in part because it seemed, at the time, so clearly to promise more. Now she knows: That was the moment, right then. There has been no other.
Michael Cunningham (The Hours)
Here's the thing, say Shug. The thing I believe. God is inside you and inside everybody else. You come into the world with God. But only them that search for it inside find it. And sometimes it just manifest itself even if you not looking, or don't know what you looking for. Trouble do it for most folks, I think. Sorrow, lord. Feeling like shit. It? I ast. Yeah, It. God ain't a he or a she, but a It. But what do it look like? I ast. Don't look like nothing, she say. It ain't a picture show. It ain't something you can look at apart from anything else, including yourself. I believe God is everything, say Shug. Everything that is or ever was or ever will be. And when you can feel that, and be happy to feel that, you've found It. Shug a beautiful something, let me tell you. She frown a little, look out cross the yard, lean back in her chair, look like a big rose. She say, My first step from the old white man was trees. Then air. Then birds. Then other people. But one day when I was sitting quiet and feeling like a motherless child, which I was, it come to me: that feeling of being part of everything, not separate at all. I knew that if I cut a tree, my arm would bleed. And I laughed and I cried and I run all around the house. I knew just what it was. In fact, when it happen, you can't miss it. It sort of like you know what, she say, grinning and rubbing high up on my thigh. Shug! I say. Oh, she say. God love all them feelings. That's some of the best stuff God did. And when you know God loves 'em you enjoys 'em a lot more. You can just relax, go with everything that's going, and praise God by liking what you like. God don't think it dirty? I ast. Naw, she say. God made it. Listen, God love everything you love? and a mess of stuff you don't. But more than anything else, God love admiration. You saying God vain? I ast. Naw, she say. Not vain, just wanting to share a good thing. I think it pisses God off if you walk by the color purple in a field somewhere and don't notice it. What it do when it pissed off? I ast. Oh, it make something else. People think pleasing God is all God care about. But any fool living in the world can see it always trying to please us back. Yeah? I say. Yeah, she say. It always making little surprises and springing them on us when us least expect. You mean it want to be loved, just like the bible say. Yes, Celie, she say. Everything want to be loved. Us sing and dance, make faces and give flower bouquets, trying to be loved. You ever notice that trees do everything to git attention we do, except walk? Well, us talk and talk bout God, but I'm still adrift. Trying to chase that old white man out of my head. I been so busy thinking bout him I never truly notice nothing God make. Not a blade of corn (how it do that?) not the color purple (where it come from?). Not the little wildflowers. Nothing. Now that my eyes opening, I feels like a fool. Next to any little scrub of a bush in my yard, Mr. ____s evil sort of shrink. But not altogether. Still, it is like Shug say, You have to git man off your eyeball, before you can see anything a'tall. Man corrupt everything, say Shug. He on your box of grits, in your head, and all over the radio. He try to make you think he everywhere. Soon as you think he everywhere, you think he God. But he ain't. Whenever you trying to pray, and man plop himself on the other end of it, tell him to git lost, say Shug. Conjure up flowers, wind,water, a big rock. But this hard work, let me tell you. He been there so long, he don't want to budge. He threaten lightening, floods and earthquakes. Us fight. I hardly pray at all. Every time I conjure up a rock, I throw it. Amen
Alice Walker (The Color Purple)
Gulls wheel through spokes of sunlight over gracious roofs and dowdy thatch, snatching entrails at the marketplace and escaping over cloistered gardens, spike topped walls and treble-bolted doors. Gulls alight on whitewashed gables, creaking pagodas and dung-ripe stables; circle over towers and cavernous bells and over hidden squares where urns of urine sit by covered wells, watched by mule-drivers, mules and wolf-snouted dogs, ignored by hunch-backed makers of clogs; gather speed up the stoned-in Nakashima River and fly beneath the arches of its bridges, glimpsed form kitchen doors, watched by farmers walking high, stony ridges. Gulls fly through clouds of steam from laundries' vats; over kites unthreading corpses of cats; over scholars glimpsing truth in fragile patterns; over bath-house adulterers, heartbroken slatterns; fishwives dismembering lobsters and crabs; their husbands gutting mackerel on slabs; woodcutters' sons sharpening axes; candle-makers, rolling waxes; flint-eyed officials milking taxes; etiolated lacquerers; mottle-skinned dyers; imprecise soothsayers; unblinking liars; weavers of mats; cutters of rushes; ink-lipped calligraphers dipping brushes; booksellers ruined by unsold books; ladies-in-waiting; tasters; dressers; filching page-boys; runny-nosed cooks; sunless attic nooks where seamstresses prick calloused fingers; limping malingerers; swineherds; swindlers; lip-chewed debtors rich in excuses; heard-it-all creditors tightening nooses; prisoners haunted by happier lives and ageing rakes by other men's wives; skeletal tutors goaded to fits; firemen-turned-looters when occasion permits; tongue-tied witnesses; purchased judges; mothers-in-law nurturing briars and grudges; apothecaries grinding powders with mortars; palanquins carrying not-yet-wed daughters; silent nuns; nine-year-old whores; the once-were-beautiful gnawed by sores; statues of Jizo anointed with posies; syphilitics sneezing through rotted-off noses; potters; barbers; hawkers of oil; tanners; cutlers; carters of night-soil; gate-keepers; bee-keepers; blacksmiths and drapers; torturers; wet-nurses; perjurers; cut-purses; the newborn; the growing; the strong-willed and pliant; the ailing; the dying; the weak and defiant; over the roof of a painter withdrawn first from the world, then his family, and down into a masterpiece that has, in the end, withdrawn from its creator; and around again, where their flight began, over the balcony of the Room of Last Chrysanthemum, where a puddle from last night's rain is evaporating; a puddle in which Magistrate Shiroyama observes the blurred reflections of gulls wheeling through spokes of sunlight. This world, he thinks, contains just one masterpiece, and that is itself.
David Mitchell (The Thousand Autumns of Jacob de Zoet)