Earthquake Bird Quotes

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They say that in the hour before an earthquake the clouds hang leaden in the sky, the winds slows to a hot breath, and the birds fall quiet in the trees of the town square. Yes but these are the same portents that precede lunchtime, frankly.
Chris Cleave (Little Bee)
Like the most of you, I was raised among people who knew - who were certain. They did not reason or investigate. They had no doubts. They knew that they had the truth. In their creed there was no guess — no perhaps. They had a revelation from God. They knew the beginning of things. They knew that God commenced to create one Monday morning, four thousand and four years before Christ. They knew that in the eternity — back of that morning, he had done nothing. They knew that it took him six days to make the earth — all plants, all animals, all life, and all the globes that wheel in space. They knew exactly what he did each day and when he rested. They knew the origin, the cause of evil, of all crime, of all disease and death. At the same time they knew that God created man in his own image and was perfectly satisfied with his work... They knew all about the Flood -- knew that God, with the exception of eight, drowned all his children -- the old and young -- the bowed patriarch and the dimpled babe -- the young man and the merry maiden -- the loving mother and the laughing child -- because his mercy endureth forever. They knew too, that he drowned the beasts and birds -- everything that walked or crawled or flew -- because his loving kindness is over all his works. They knew that God, for the purpose of civilizing his children, had devoured some with earthquakes, destroyed some with storms of fire, killed some with his lightnings, millions with famine, with pestilence, and sacrificed countless thousands upon the fields of war. They knew that it was necessary to believe these things and to love God. They knew that there could be no salvation except by faith, and through the atoning blood of Jesus Christ. Then I asked myself the question: Is there a supernatural power -- an arbitrary mind -- an enthroned God -- a supreme will that sways the tides and currents of the world -- to which all causes bow? I do not deny. I do not know - but I do not believe. I believe that the natural is supreme - that from the infinite chain no link can be lost or broken — that there is no supernatural power that can answer prayer - no power that worship can persuade or change — no power that cares for man. Is there a God? I do not know. Is man immortal? I do not know. One thing I do know, and that is, that neither hope, nor fear, belief, nor denial, can change the fact. It is as it is, and it will be as it must be. We can be as honest as we are ignorant. If we are, when asked what is beyond the horizon of the known, we must say that we do not know. We can tell the truth, and we can enjoy the blessed freedom that the brave have won. We can destroy the monsters of superstition, the hissing snakes of ignorance and fear. We can drive from our minds the frightful things that tear and wound with beak and fang. We can civilize our fellow-men. We can fill our lives with generous deeds, with loving words, with art and song, and all the ecstasies of love. We can flood our years with sunshine — with the divine climate of kindness, and we can drain to the last drop the golden cup of joy.
Robert G. Ingersoll (The Works of Robert G. Ingersoll, Vol 1: Lectures)
I hear everything he's ever painted in his voice. I hear that person on the beach, looking at the waves. I hear hearts rocked by earthquakes and disappointed seas. I make myself look at him because he needs to be looked at. He needs to be seen. I hate that he's been on his own so long, painting graffiti moons and bricked-in birds and keeping quiet about who he really is.
Cath Crowley (Graffiti Moon)
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)
After this, I couldn't hear their voices any longer; for in my ears I heard a sound like a bird's wings flapping in panic. Perhaps it was my heart, I don't know. But if you've ever seen a bird trapped inside the great hall of a temple, looking for some way out, well, that was how my mind was reacting. It had never occurred to me that my mother wouldn't simply go on being sick. I won't say I'd never wondered what might happen if she should die; I did wonder about it, in the same way I wondered what might happen if our house were swallowed up in an earthquake. There could hardly be life after such an event.
Arthur Golden (Memoirs of a Geisha)
They saw me. Milton's smile curled off his face like unsticky tape. And I knew immediately, I was a boy band, a boondoggle, born fool. He was going to pull a Danny Zuko in Grease when Sandy says hello to him in front of the T-Birds, a Mrs. Robinson when she tells Elaine she didn't seduce Benjamin, a Daisy when she chooses Tom with the disposition of a sour kiwi over Gatsby, a self-made man, a man engorged with dreams, who didn't mind throwing a pile of shirts around a room if he wanted too. My heart landslided. My legs earthquaked.
Marisha Pessl (Special Topics in Calamity Physics)
Helen of Troy Does Counter Dancing The world is full of women who'd tell me I should be ashamed of myself if they had the chance. Quit dancing. Get some self-respect and a day job. Right. And minimum wage, and varicose veins, just standing in one place for eight hours behind a glass counter bundled up to the neck, instead of naked as a meat sandwich. Selling gloves, or something. Instead of what I do sell. You have to have talent to peddle a thing so nebulous and without material form. Exploited, they'd say. Yes, any way you cut it, but I've a choice of how, and I'll take the money. I do give value. Like preachers, I sell vision, like perfume ads, desire or its facsimile. Like jokes or war, it's all in the timing. I sell men back their worst suspicions: that everything's for sale, and piecemeal. They gaze at me and see a chain-saw murder just before it happens, when thigh, ass, inkblot, crevice, tit, and nipple are still connected. Such hatred leaps in them, my beery worshipers! That, or a bleary hopeless love. Seeing the rows of heads and upturned eyes, imploring but ready to snap at my ankles, I understand floods and earthquakes, and the urge to step on ants. I keep the beat, and dance for them because they can't. The music smells like foxes, crisp as heated metal searing the nostrils or humid as August, hazy and languorous as a looted city the day after, when all the rape's been done already, and the killing, and the survivors wander around looking for garbage to eat, and there's only a bleak exhaustion. Speaking of which, it's the smiling tires me out the most. This, and the pretense that I can't hear them. And I can't, because I'm after all a foreigner to them. The speech here is all warty gutturals, obvious as a slam of ham, but I come from the province of the gods where meaning are lilting and oblique. I don't let on to everyone, but lean close, and I'll whisper: My mothers was raped by a holy swan. You believe that? You can take me out to dinner. That's what we tell all the husbands. There sure are a lot of dangerous birds around. Not that anyone here but you would understand. The rest of them would like to watch me and feel nothing. Reduce me to components as in a clock factory or abattoir. Crush out the mystery. Wall me up alive in my own body. They'd like to see through me, but nothing is more opaque than absolute transparency. Look - my feet don't hit the marble! Like breath or a balloon, I'm rising, I hover six inches in the air in my blazing swan-egg of light. You think I'm not a goddess? Try me. This is a torch song. Touch me and you'll burn.
Margaret Atwood (Morning In The Burned House: Poems)
I've heard that in the moments before an earthquake, all nature falls completely silent. Birds alight and stop chirping, squirrels stop running, rivers stop flowing. I don't know if this is true or not, but that's what the meeting felt like at that moment. An eerie, unnatural quiet before something awful.
Ann M. Martin (Stacey vs. the BSC (The Baby-Sitters Club, #83))
I sit on an outcropping of rock above the lake and try to be angry, but I can’t hold the feeling. I need erupting volcanoes, hurricanes, massive earthquakes. Were I working on Monstrous Sea right now, Orcus’s monsters would bleed from the page in the search for flesh. I need vindication. I do not need little birds twittering over a wide expanse of shimmering lake and a light wind ruffling my hair. Nature defies my anger. Nature defies every emotion I have. I can’t complain to nature, or appeal to it, or rage at it. Nature doesn’t care about me.
Francesca Zappia (Eliza and Her Monsters)
It was because the place was just the same that made your absence seem a savage force, for under all the gentleness there came an earthquake tremor: fountain, bird and grass were shaken by my thinking of your name. (Elizabeth Jennings: Absence)
David J. Gatward (Restless Dead (DCI Harry Grimm, #5))
To the friends I have abandoned: 
I am so sorry for cutting you off.
 Anxiety has found a home deep within my bones. 
I shake in marrow earthquakes; tremors send fissures through my soul.
 A love for you still exists; I feel it when I am most alone.
 This island I’ve become, it is not a permanent home.
It’s just hard to be around other people
 when I can hardly stand being in my own skin.
Faraway Poetry (Sad Birds Still Sing)
A man is building his house. Though warned by his friends it isn’t a safe design, he refuses to listen. There’s an earthquake, and the house collapses. He and a bird that lived in a tree near the house become trapped.” Amisha searched the students’ faces and was pleased to see their interest. “There is only one small hole through which to breathe. The man must decide who gets the oxygen.” She paused to make sure she still had their attention. “Please write about what happens next.
Sejal Badani (The Storyteller's Secret)
The fields, the lakes, the forests, and the streams, ocean, and all the living things that dwell within the daedal earth; lightning, and rain, earthquake, and fiery flood, and hurricane, the torpor of the year when feeble dreams visit the hidden buds, or dreamless sleep holds every future leaf and flower; the bound with which from that detested trance they leap; the works and ways of man, their death and birth, and that of him and all that his may be; all things that move and breathe with toil and sound are born and die; revolve, subside, and swell. Power dwells apart in its tranquillity, remote, serene, and inaccessible: and this, the naked countenance of earth, on which I gaze, even these primeval mountains teach the adverting mind. The glaciers creep like snakes that watch their prey, from their far fountains, slow rolling on; there, many a precipice frost and the sun in scorn of mortal power have pil'd: dome, pyramid, and pinnacle, a city of death, distinct with many a tower and wall impregnable of beaming ice. Yet not a city, but a flood of ruin is there, that from the boundaries of the sky rolls its perpetual stream; vast pines are strewing its destin'd path, or in the mangled soil branchless and shatter'd stand; the rocks, drawn down from yon remotest waste, have overthrown the limits of the dead and living world, never to be reclaim'd. The dwelling-place of insects, beasts, and birds, becomes its spoil; their food and their retreat for ever gone, so much of life and joy is lost. The race of man flies far in dread; his work and dwelling vanish, like smoke before the tempest's stream, and their place is not known. Below, vast caves shine in the rushing torrents' restless gleam, which from those secret chasms in tumult welling meet in the vale, and one majestic river, the breath and blood of distant lands, for ever rolls its loud waters to the ocean-waves, breathes its swift vapours to the circling air.
Percy Bysshe Shelley
True love is in despair and is enchanted over a glove lost or a handkerchief found, and eternity is required for its devotion and its hopes. It is composed both of the infinitely great and the infinitely little. If you are a stone, be adamant; if you are a plant, be the sensitive plant; if you are a man, be love. Free eBooks at Planet 1579 Nothing suffices for love. We have happiness, we desire paradise; we possess paradise, we desire heaven. Oh ye who love each other, all this is contained in love. Understand how to find it there. Love has contemplation as well as heaven, and more than heaven, it has voluptuousness. ‘Does she still come to the Luxembourg?’ ‘No, sir.’ ‘This is the church where she attends mass, is it not?’ ‘She no longer comes here.’ ‘Does she still live in this house?’ ‘She has moved away.’ ‘Where has she gone to dwell?’ ‘She did not say.’ What a melancholy thing not to know the address of one’s soul! Love has its childishness, other passions have their pettinesses. Shame on the passions which belittle man! Honor to the one which makes a child of him! There is one strange thing, do you know it? I dwell in the night. There is a being who carried off my sky when she went away. Oh! would that we were lying side by side in the same grave, hand in hand, and from time to time, in the darkness, gently caressing a finger,—that would suffice for my eternity! Ye who suffer because ye love, love yet more. To die of love, is to live in it. Love. A sombre and starry transfiguration is mingled with this torture. There is ecstasy in agony. Oh joy of the birds! It is because they have nests that they sing. 1580 Les Miserables Love is a celestial respiration of the air of paradise. Deep hearts, sage minds, take life as God has made it; it is a long trial, an incomprehensible preparation for an unknown destiny. This destiny, the true one, begins for a man with the first step inside the tomb. Then something appears to him, and he begins to distinguish the definitive. The definitive, meditate upon that word. The living perceive the infinite; the definitive permits itself to be seen only by the dead. In the meanwhile, love and suffer, hope and contemplate. Woe, alas! to him who shall have loved only bodies, forms, appearances! Death will deprive him of all. Try to love souls, you will find them again. I encountered in the street, a very poor young man who was in love. His hat was old, his coat was worn, his elbows were in holes; water trickled through his shoes, and the stars through his soul. What a grand thing it is to be loved! What a far grander thing it is to love! The heart becomes heroic, by dint of passion. It is no longer composed of anything but what is pure; it no longer rests on anything that is not elevated and great. An unworthy thought can no more germinate in it, than a nettle on a glacier. The serene and lofty soul, inaccessible to vulgar passions and emotions, dominating the clouds and the shades of this world, its follies, its lies, its hatreds, its vanities, its miseries, inhabits the blue of heaven, and no longer feels anything but profound and subterranean shocks of destiny, as the crests of mountains feel the shocks of earthquake. If there did not exist some one who loved, the sun would become extinct.
Victor Hugo
All engines running . . . “Zero!” Alan Shepard was prepared, his body tensed, and in its blaze of flame and torrents of cracking ice, Apollo 14 began its mission. The astronauts felt a gentle sense of motion, mildly jerky at first, but to their surprise “a very gentle rise.” It wasn’t that way outside. The Saturn V roared, bellowed, and shrieked, hurling out ear-stabbing sonic waves and a crackling thunder which sent birds flying and wildlife fleeing, and which slammed into people miles away, fluttering their clothing and causing them to step back uncertainly. The sound was so great its shock waves tumbled and mixed together, swirling deep thunder with an acetylene-torch cry that continued impossibly long, echoing from clouds, rebounding across the ground, seeming to split the very sky asunder. The earth shook, a feeling akin to the jellied trembling of an earthquake. The longer the first stage burned, the farther its stentorian bellow hurtled outward. Scientists judge the savage roar of the Saturn V akin to the explosion of the volcano Krakatau, which tore apart the islands of the Sundra Strait in 1883.
Alan Shepard (Moon Shot: The Inside Story of America's Race to the Moon)
« "It’s so good to have friends from home, don’t you think so?" “I haven’t lived there for a very long time.” “It’s your roots that count.” “Plants and trees have roots. People have legs. »
Susanna Jones (The Earthquake Bird)
only sport known to have inspired an indignant left-wing poem. It was written by one Sarah Norcliffe Cleghorn in 1915. The golf links lie so near the mill That almost every day The laboring children can look out And see the men at play. Just show me an indignant left-wing poem about softball or bungee jumping. And our local mill has been converted to a shopping mall, so the kids are still there. Golf is also the only sport God is known to play. God and Saint Peter are out on Sunday morning. On the first hole God drives into a water hazard. The waters part and God chips onto the green. On the second hole God takes a tremendous whack and the ball lands ten feet from the pin. There’s an earthquake, one side of the green rises up, and the ball rolls into the cup. On the third hole God lands in a sand trap. He creates life. Single-cell organisms develop into fish and then amphibians. Amphibians crawl out of the ocean and evolve into reptiles, birds, and furry little mammals. One of those furry little mammals runs into the sand trap, grabs God’s ball in its mouth, scurries over, and drops it in the hole. Saint Peter looks at God and says, “You wanna play golf or you wanna fuck around?” And golf courses are beautiful. Many people think mature men have no appreciation for beauty except in immature women. This isn’t true, and, anyway, we’d rather be playing golf. A golf course is a perfect example of Republican male aesthetics—no fussy little flowers, no stupid ornamental shrubs, no exorbitant demands for alimony, just acre upon acre of lush green grass that somebody else has to mow. Truth, beauty, and even poetry are to be found in golf. Every man, when he steps up to the tee, feels, as Keats has it … Like stout Cortez when with eagle eyes He star’d at the Pacific—and all his men Look’d at each other with a wild surmise— Silent, upon a peak in Darien. That is, the men were silent. Cortez was saying, “I can get on in two, easy. A three-wood drive, a five-iron from the fairway, then a two-putt max. But if I hook it, shit, I’m in the drink.” EAT THE RICH
P.J. O'Rourke (Thrown Under the Omnibus: A Reader)
We don't always get to choose.
Susanna Jones (The Earthquake Bird)
When something's gone, it's gone. You look for the next thing.
Susanna Jones (The Earthquake Bird)
nonchalant charminar ma, i can’t smile well-scrubbed twisted-smirks in your noble society anymore in the godly dense ocean of kindness with krishna’s duffed up white teeth with studious eyes of the devil i can’t anymore in a ramakrishnian posture use my wife according to the matriarchal customs substitute sugar for saccharine and dread diabetes no more i can’t no more with my unhappy organ do a devdas again in khalashitola on the registry day of a former fling. my liver is getting rancid by the day my grandfather had cirrhosis don’t understand heredity i drink alcohol read poetry my father for the sake of puja etc used to fast venerable dadas in our para swearing by dharma gently press ripe breasts of sisters-born-of-the-locality on holi on the day ma left for trips abroad many in your noble society had vodka i will nonchalantly from your funeral pyre light up a charminar thinking of your death my eyes tear up then i don’t think of earthquakes by the banks or of floodwater didn’t put my hand on the string of the petticoat of an unmarried lover and didn’t think of baishnab padavali ma, even i’ll die one day. at belur mandir on seeing foreign woman pray with her international python-bum veiled in a skirt my limitless libido rose up ma because your libido will be tied up to father’s memories even beyond death i this fucked up drunk am envying you carrying dirt of the humblest kind looking at my organ i feel as if i’m an organism from another planet now the rays of the setting sun is touching my face on a tangent and after mixing the colour of the setting sun on their wings a flock of non-family-planning birds is going back towards bonolata sen’s eyes peaceful as a nest – it’s time for them to warm the eggs –
Falguni Ray (ফালগুনী রায় সমগ্র)
Ezekiel spells it out: “This is what will happen in that day: When Gog attacks the land of Israel, my hot anger will be aroused, declares the Sovereign LORD. In my zeal and fiery wrath I declare that at that time there shall be a great earthquake in the land of Israel. The fish of the sea, the birds of the air, the beasts of the field, every creature that moves along the ground, and all the people on the face of the earth will tremble at my presence. The mountains will be overturned, the cliffs will crumble and every wall will fall to the ground. I will summon a sword against Gog on all my mountains, declares the Sovereign LORD. Every man’s sword will be against his brother. I will execute judgment upon him with plague and bloodshed; I will pour down torrents of rain, hailstones and burning sulfur on him and on his troops and on the many nations with him. And so I will show my greatness and my holiness, and I will make myself known in the sight of many nations. Then they will know that I am the LORD.’” (Ezekiel 38:18-23)
John Price (The End of America: The Role of Islam in the End Times and Biblical Warnings to Flee America)
All about her she saw that two thousand out of the horde had made it across the water. They were on the frontier of Eden. A mere two thousand combatants for the invasion of an impregnable fortress. Five out of six Nephilim had perished at the mercy of Rahab and her brood of Leviathan and the tentacled one. The devastation was inestimable. It could lose her the war. Still, she had two thousand warriors with her. They were on the shores of the entrance to the Garden that hid the Tree of Life deep in its midst. Thanks to the Cursed One, she knew exactly where that tree was. She looked for her Rephaim generals but could not find them. They had all been lost to the denizens of the deep. An earthquake rocked the land. It was deep, the precursor of something much bigger. “Now what?” Inanna complained. She looked onto the horizon of her destination. Black smoke billowing out of the mountaintops of not only Mount Sahand, but the more distant northern Mount Savalan. The earth rumbled again. She realized she did not have much time. She signaled for her Anzu bird, and called out to Utu, flying above them at a safe height. “SOUND THE CRY OF WAR!” she bellowed. Utu put the trumpet to his lips and blew with all his might. The war cry of Inanna echoed throughout the land. Her Nephilim gathered their arms and dashed toward the heart of Eden. Inanna mounted her thunderbird. She glanced out at the Lake. Rahab glided on the surface, its eyes watching her. It would not forget this day, nor the Watcher, who for one moment bested the sea dragon of the Abyss.               • • • • • At the top of the Mount Sahand ridge, six thousand Nephilim prepared their sail-chutes. They waited for the call of war. When it came, they jumped off the cliff edge by the dozens. They opened up their sails to float down into the Garden. Handfuls of them failed and Nephilim plummeted to their deaths a thousand feet below. But most of them worked. The Nephilim drifted from the heavens into the pristine paradise. Right into the flaming whirling swords of the Cherubim.
Brian Godawa (Enoch Primordial (Chronicles of the Nephilim #2))