Going Backwards Quotes

We've searched our database for all the quotes and captions related to Going Backwards. Here they are! All 100 of them:

Honestly, if you were any slower, you’d be going backward.
J.K. Rowling (Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets (Harry Potter, #2))
I am going to MURDER YOU—” “No,” he says, pointing at me as he shifts backward again. “Bad Juliette. You don’t like to kill people, remember? You’re against that, remember? You like to talk about feelings and rainbows—
Tahereh Mafi (Ignite Me (Shatter Me, #3))
So I am to sit here and feed you information,” Cardan says, leaning against a hickory tree. “And you’re to go charm royalty? That seems entirely backward.” I fix him with a look. “I can be charming. I charmed you, didn’t I?” He rolls his eyes. “Do not expect others to share my depraved tastes.
Holly Black (The Cruel Prince (The Folk of the Air, #1))
In my next life I want to live my life backwards. You start out dead and get that out of the way. Then you wake up in an old people's home feeling better every day. You get kicked out for being too healthy, go collect your pension, and then when you start work, you get a gold watch and a party on your first day. You work for 40 years until you're young enough to enjoy your retirement. You party, drink alcohol, and are generally promiscuous, then you are ready for high school. You then go to primary school, you become a kid, you play. You have no responsibilities, you become a baby until you are born. And then you spend your last 9 months floating in luxurious spa-like conditions with central heating and room service on tap, larger quarters every day and then Voila! You finish off as an orgasm!
Woody Allen
Azkaban - the wizard prison, Goyle." said Malfoy, looking at him in disbelief. "Honestly, if you were any slower, you'd be going backward.
J.K. Rowling (Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets (Harry Potter, #2))
Technological progress has merely provided us with more efficient means for going backwards.
Aldous Huxley (Ends and Means)
The most unfair thing about life is the way it ends. I mean, life is tough. It takes up a lot of your time. What do you get at the end of it? A Death! What’s that, a bonus? I think the life cycle is all backwards. You should die first, get it out of the way. Then you live in an old age home. You get kicked out when you’re too young, you get a gold watch, you go to work. You work forty years until you’re young enough to enjoy your retirement. You do drugs, alcohol, you party, you get ready for high school. You go to grade school, you become a kid, you play, you have no responsibilities, you become a little baby, you go back into the womb, you spend your last nine months floating …and you finish off as an orgasm.
George Carlin
Your children are not your children. They are sons and daughters of Life's longing for itself. They come through you but not from you. And though they are with you yet they belong not to you. You may give them your love but not your thoughts, For they have their own thoughts. You may house their bodies but not their souls, For thir souls dwell in the house of tomorrow, which you cannot visit, not even in your dreams. You may strive to be like them, but seek not to make them like you. For life goes not backward nor tarries with yesterday. You are the bows from which your children as living arrows are sent forth. The archer sees the make upon the path of the infinite, and He bends you with His might that His arrows may go swift and far. Let your bending in the archer's hand be for gladness. For even as He loves the arrow that flies, so He also loves the bow that is stable.
Kahlil Gibran
That's when I realized that certain moments go on forever. Even after they're over they still go on, even after you're dead and buried, those moments are lasting still, backward and forward, on into infinity. They are everything and everywhere all at once. They are the meaning.
Lauren Oliver (Before I Fall)
She whirled when the monster was almost on top of her. I thought the thing in her hands was an umbrella until she cranked the pump and the shotgun blast blew the giant twenty feet backwards, right into Nico's sword. "Nice one," Paul said. "When did you learn to fire a shotgun?" I demanded. My mom blew the hair out of her face. "About two seconds ago. Percy, we'll be fine. Go!
Rick Riordan (The Last Olympian (Percy Jackson and the Olympians, #5))
The sad truth is that certain types of things can't go backward. Once they start going forward, no matter what you do, they can't go back the way they were. If even one little thing goes awry, then that's how it will stay forever.
Haruki Murakami (South of the Border, West of the Sun)
Sometimes I reread my favorite books from back to front. I start with the last chapter and read backward until I get to the beginning. When you read this way, characters go from hope to despair, from self-knowledge to doubt. In love stories, couples start out as lovers and end as strangers. Coming-of-age books become stories of losing your way. Your favorite characters come back to life.
Nicola Yoon (Everything, Everything)
Travis grabbed my wrists and wrapped them around his middle. "There's nothing to hold on to but me, Pidge. Don't let go," he said pushing the bike backward with his feet.
Jamie McGuire (Beautiful Disaster (Beautiful, #1))
Just that dwelling and planning is bullshit, you dwell on the past, you can’t move forward. Spend too much time planning for the future and you just push yourself backwards, or you stay stagnant in the same place all your life. Live in the moment, where everything is just right, take your time and limit your bad memories and you’ll get wherever it is you’re going a lot faster and with less bumps in the road along the way.
J.A. Redmerski (The Edge of Never (The Edge of Never, #1))
Mara, I have never felt about anyone the way I feel about you. And when you're ready for me to show you," he said, brushing my hair to the side, "I'm going to kiss you." His thumb grazed my ear and his hand curved around my neck. He leaned me backward and my eyes fluttered closed. I breathed in the scent of him as he leaned in and kissed the hollow under my ear. My pulse raced under his lips. "And I won't settle for anything less.
Michelle Hodkin (The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer (Mara Dyer, #1))
I've finally gotten to a point in my life where I'm not afraid to speak. Where my shadow no longer haunts me. And I don't want to lose that freedom--not again. I can't go backward. I'd rather be shot dead screaming for justice than die alone in a prison of my own making.
Tahereh Mafi (Ignite Me (Shatter Me, #3))
Going backwards is never an option.
Melissa Marr (Ink Exchange (Wicked Lovely, #2))
I’m sorry for screwing everything up. I hurt you again, and for that I’m sorry. I’m so sorry. I don’t want to do that anymore. So … I’m not going to stay for the wedding. I’m just going to take off now. I won’t see you again, not for a long time. Probably for the best. Being near you like this, it hurts. And Jere”—Conrad cleared his throat and stepped backward, making space between us—“he’s the one who needs you.” Hoarsely, he said, “I need you to know that no matter what happens, it was worth it to me. Being with you, loving you. It was all worth it
Jenny Han (We'll Always Have Summer (Summer, #3))
Life can only be understood going backward, but must be lived going forward.
Søren Kierkegaard
I measure time by the days I've spent away from you/ that thought occurred to me/ as i watched the sky go dark from blue
Lana Del Rey (Violet Bent Backwards Over the Grass)
Adrian Ivashkov wasn’t easy to surprise, but I surprised him then when I brought his mouth toward mine. I kissed him, and for a moment, he was too stunned to respond. That lasted for, oh, about a second. Then the intensity I’d come to know so well in him returned. He pushed me backward, lifting me so that I sat at the table. The tablecloth bunched up, knocking over some of the glasses. I heard what sounded like a china plate crash against the floor. Whatever logic and reason I normally possessed had melted away. There was nothing but flesh and fire left, and I wasn’t going to lie to myself—at least not tonight.
Richelle Mead (The Indigo Spell (Bloodlines, #3))
I wear the universe backwards. I imagine putting stars in my coffee, and sugar in the sky. I imagine going fishing in clouds, and watching the sun hide behind lakes. I'm too busy dancing with my imagination to even tip toe with reality for a second. They say I'm going mad. They're right.
D. Antoinette Foy
I can see the first apple teetering when I let the third arrow go, catching the torn flap and ripping it from the bag. For a moment, everything seems frozen in time. Then the apples spill to the ground and I'm blown backward into the air.
Suzanne Collins (The Hunger Games (The Hunger Games, #1))
You can't go forward if you're looking backward. You run into walls that way.
Karen Marie Moning (Bloodfever (Fever, #2))
We cannot go backward. We cannot erase time and events. But we can go forward, hand in hand, hope in our hearts and love lighting our way.
Sharon Shinn (Jenna Starborn)
He trapped my hand against his chest and yanked my sleeve down past my wrist, covering my hand with it. Just as quickly, he did the same thing with the other sleeve. He held my shirt by the cuffs, my hands captured. My mouth opened in protest. Reeling me closer, he didn’t stop until I was directly in front of him. Suddenly he lifted me onto the counter. My face was level with his. He fixed me with a dark, inviting smile. And that’s when I realized this moment had been dancing around the edge of my fantasies for several days now. "Take off your hat," I said, the words tumbling out before I could stop them. He slid it around, the brim facing backward. I scooted to the edge of the counter, my legs dangling one on either side of him. Something inside of me was telling me to stop—but I swept that voice to the far back of my mind. He spread his hands on the counter, just outside my hips. Tilting his head to one side, he moved closer. His scent, which was all damp dark earth, overwhelmed me. I inhaled two sharp breaths. No. This wasn’t right. Not this, not with Patch. He was frightening. In a good way, yes. But also in a bad way. A very bad way. "You should go," I breathed. "You should definitely go." "Go here?" His mouth was on my shoulder. "Or here?" It moved up my neck. My brain couldn’t process one logical thought. Patch’s mouth was roaming north, up over my jaw, gently sucking at my skin... "My legs are falling asleep," I blurted. It wasn’t a total lie. I was experiencing tingling sensations all through my body, legs included. "I could solve that." Patch’s hands closed on my hips.
Becca Fitzpatrick (Hush, Hush (Hush, Hush, #1))
As a kid, I would count backwards from ten and imagine at one, there would be an explosion–perhaps caused by a rogue planet crashing into Earth or some other major catastrophe. When nothing happened, I'd feel relieved and at the same time, a little disappointed. I think of you at ten; the first time I saw you. Your smile at nine and how it lit up something inside me I had thought long dead. Your lips at eight pressed against mine and at seven, your warm breath in my ear and your hands everywhere. You tell me you love me at six and at five we have our first real fight. At four we have our second and three, our third. At two you tell me you can't go on any longer and then at one, you ask me to stay. And I am relieved, so relieved–and a little disappointed.
Lang Leav (Love & Misadventure)
There is little point in teaching anything backwards. The whole object of life, Headmistress, is to go forwards.
Roald Dahl (Matilda)
Talent without discipline is like an octopus on roller skates. There's plenty of movement, but you never know if it's going to be forward, backwards, or sideways.
H. Jackson Brown Jr.
Do you know why the nose of the bull dog is sloped backwards? So it can keep on breathing without ever letting go.
Winston S. Churchill
Every challenge you encounter in life is a fork in the road. You have the choice to choose which way to go - backward, forward, breakdown or breakthrough.
Ifeanyi Enoch Onuoha (Overcoming the Challenges of Life)
You - will - never - touch - our - children - again!' screamed Mrs. Weasley. Bellatrix laughed, the same exhilarated laugh her cousin Sirius had given as he toppled backwards through the veil, and suddenly Harry knew what was going to happen before it did. Molly's curse soared beneath Bellatrix's outstretched arm and hit her squarely in the chest, directly over her heart. Bellatrix's gloating smile froze, her eyes seemed to bulge: for the tiniest space of time she knew what had happened, and then she toppled, and the watching crowd roared, and Voldemort screamed.
J.K. Rowling (Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows (Harry Potter, #7))
She was oozing backwards into the tree. Her bones were going to mate with the grain of the wood. I am becoming part of the forest.
Susan Rowland (The Sacred Well Murders)
That is how you know you've left childhood behind-when you wish for time to go backward.
Alice Hoffman (Here on Earth)
I love how, whenever you tell me a story, you go backwards and forwards and tell me everything else that could possibly be happening in every direction, like an explosion. Like a flower blooming.
Andrew Smith (Grasshopper Jungle)
I do not think that all who choose wrong roads perish; but their rescue consists in being put back on the right road. A sum can be put right: but only by going back til you find the error and working it afresh from that point, never by simply going on. Evil can be undone, but it cannot 'develop' into good. Time does not heal it. The spell must be unwound, bit by bit, 'with backward mutters of dissevering power' --or else not.
C.S. Lewis (The Great Divorce)
Dum walks backwards, talking to us. "We're going back to high school where our survival instincts are at their finest.
Susan Ee (World After (Penryn & the End of Days, #2))
Hajime," she began, "the sad truth is that some things can't go backwards. Once they start going forward, no matter what you do, they can't go back to the way they were. If one little thing goes awry, then that's how it will stay forever.
Haruki Murakami (South of the Border, West of the Sun)
Thank you, Simon, I appreciate that." Luke opened the pizza box and, finding it empty, shut it with a sigh. "Though you did eat all the pizza." "I only had five slices," Simon protested, leaning his chair backward so it balanced precariously on its two back legs. "How many slices did you think were in a pizza, dork?" Clary wanted to know. "Less than five slices isn't a meal. It's a snack." Simon looked apprehensively at Luke. "Does this mean you're going to wolf out and eat me?" "Certainly not." Luke rose to toss the pizza box into the trash. "You would be stringy and hard to digest." "But kosher," Simon pointed out cheerfully. "I'll be sure to point any Jewish lycanthropes your way." Luke leaned his back against the sink.
Cassandra Clare (City of Ashes (The Mortal Instruments, #2))
That’s when I realized that certain moments go on forever. Even after they’re over they still go on, even after you're dead and buried, those moments are lasting still, backward and forward, on into infinity. They are everything and everywhere all at once.
Lauren Oliver (Before I Fall)
Do you love me, Westley? Is that it?’ He couldn’t believe it. ‘Do I love you? My God, if your love were a grain of sand, mine would be a universe of beaches. If your love were—‘ ‘I don’t understand the first one yet,’ Buttercup interrupted. She was starting to get very excited now. ‘Let me get this straight. Are you saying my love is the size of a grain of sand and yours is this other thing? Images just confuse me so—is this universal business of yours bigger than my sand? Help me, Westley. I have the feeling we’re on the verge of something just terribly important.’ ‘I have stayed these years in my hovel because of you. I have taught myself languages because of you. I have made my body strong because I thought you might be pleased by a strong body. I have lived my life with only the prayer that some sudden dawn you might glance in my direction. I have not known a moment in years when the sight of you did not send my heart careening against my rib cage. I have not known a night when your visage did not accompany me to sleep. There has not been a morning when you did not flutter behind my waking eyelids….Is any of this getting through to you, Buttercup, or do you want me to go on for a while?’ ‘Never stop.’ ‘There has not been—‘ ‘If you’re teasing me, Westley, I’m just going to kill you.’ ‘How can you even dream I might be teasing?’ ‘Well, you haven’t once said you loved me.’ ‘That’s all you need? Easy. I love you. Okay? Want it louder? I love you. Spell it out, should I? I ell-oh-vee-ee why-oh-you. Want it backward? You love I.’ ‘You are teasing now; aren’t you?’ ‘A little maybe; I’ve been saying it so long to you, you just wouldn’t listen. Every time you said ‘Farm boy do this’ you thought I was answering ‘As you wish’ but that’s only because you were hearing wrong. ‘I love you’ was what it was, but you never heard, and you never heard.
William Goldman (The Princess Bride)
Tohrment spoke. "Bella's brother called. He's tabled the sehelusion request and asked that she stay here for a couple of days." Z jacked his head up. "Why?" "He didn't give a reason-" Tohr's eye's narrowed on Z's face. "Oh... my God." "What the fuck are you looking at?" Phury pointed to the antique mirror hanging on the wall next to the double doors. "See for yourself." Zsadist marched across the room, ready to give them all hell. Bella was what mattered- His mouth went lax at his reflection. With a shaky hand he reached out to the eyes in the old-fashioned leaded glass. His irises were no longer black. They were yellow. Just like his twin's. "Phury?" he said softly. "Phury... what happened to me?" As the male came up behind him, his brother's face appeared right beside Z's. And then Wrath's dark reflection showed up in the mirror, all long hair and sunglasses. Then Rhage's star-fallen beauty. And Vishous's Sox cap. And Tohrment's brush cut. And Butch's busted nose. One by one they reached out and touched him, their big hands gently on his shoulders. "Welcome back, my brother," Phury whispered. Zsadist stared at the males who were behind him. And the oddest thought that if he were to let himself go limp and fall backward... they would catch him.
J.R. Ward (Lover Awakened (Black Dagger Brotherhood, #3))
Nostalgia - its delicate, but potent. Teddy told me that in Greek nostalgia literally means “the pain from an old wound.” It’s a twinge in your heart far more powerful than memory alone. This device isn’t a spaceship, it’s a time machine. It goes backwards, and forwards… it takes us to a place where we ache to go again. It’s not called the wheel, it’s called the carousel. It let’s us travel the way a child travels - around and around, and back home again, to a place where we know are loved.
Don Draper
I do not like to dwell on the past. Life is ahead of us. If we spend too much time looking backward, we can’t see where we are going!
R.J. Palacio (The Julian Chapter (Wonder, #1.5))
You had this young man with you for... what, six years?" Halt shrugged. "Near enough," he replied. "And did you ever understand a word he was saying?" "Not a lot of the time, no," Halt said. Crowley shook his head in wonder. "It's just as well he didn't go into the Diplomatic Service. We'd be at war with half a dozen countries by now if he was on the loose." Will drew a deep breath to begin talking. He noticed that both men took an involuntary half step backward and he decided he'd better try to keep it as simple as possible.
John Flanagan (The Sorcerer in the North (Ranger's Apprentice, #5))
The heart does not go backward. Only the mind.
Elizabeth Kostova (The Swan Thieves)
In Greek, “nostalgia” literally means “the pain from an old wound”. It’s a twinge in your heart, far more powerful than memory alone. This device isn’t a spaceship, it’s a time machine. It goes backwards and forwards, it takes us to a place where we ache to go again.
Don Draper
What if you were wrong? What if everything you ever believed was a lie? What if you missed your opportunity because you didn't know your worth? What if you settled on familiar, but God was trying to give you something better? What if you decided not to go backwards, but forward? What if doing what you have never done before was the answer to everything that didn't make sense? What if the answer wasn't to be found in words, but in action? What if you found the courage to do what you really wanted to do and doing it changed your whole life?
Shannon L. Alder
After you've seen behind the facade of a stage set you can't take the play seriously any more. You can't go backwards and regain your ignorance; you have to move forward.
Zeena Schreck
Where you come from is gone, where you thought you were going to never was there, and where you are is no good unless you can get away from it. Where is there a place for you to be? No place. Nothing outside you can give you any place," he said. "You needn't look at the sky because it's not going to open up and show no place behind it. You needn't to search for any hole in the ground to look through into somewhere else. You can't go neither forwards nor backwards into your daddy's time nor your children's if you have them. In yourself right now is all the place you've got. If there was any Fall, look there, if there was any Redemption, look there, and if you expect any Judgment, look there, because they all three will have to be in your time and your body and where in your time and your body can they be?
Flannery O'Connor (Wise Blood)
It was like swimming against a current that swept you backwards however hard you struggled, and then suddenly deciding to turn round and go with the current instead of opposing it. Nothing had changed except your own attitude: the predestined thing happened in any case.
George Orwell (1984)
People long to go backward in their imagination as well as forward. We don't wish simply to exist forever in some future; we wish to have existed in some distant past.
Gloria Whelan (Parade of Shadows)
I don't know where we're going, he and I, but I know I want to get there. We are hours and minutes reaching for the same second, holding hands as we spin forward into new days and the promise of something better. But though we'll know forward and we've known backward, we will never know the present. This moment and the next one and even the one that would've been right now are gone, already passed, and all we're left with are these tired bodies, the only proof that we've lived through time and survived it. It'll be worth it, though, in the end. Fighting for a lifetime of this.
Tahereh Mafi (Ignite Me (Shatter Me, #3))
You are good when you walk to your goal firmly and with bold steps. Yet you are not evil when you go thither limping. For those who limp go not backwards. But you who are strong and swift, see that you do not limp before the lame, deeming it kindness.
Kahlil Gibran (The Prophet)
She turned to Jin now, sprawled by the fire, his hat pulled over his eyes. “I can tell you’re awake. Are you coming with us?” He sighed, tipping his hat backward. “Yeah, yeah. Just trying to get some sleep before going to near certain death.
Alwyn Hamilton (Rebel of the Sands (Rebel of the Sands, #1))
I’m not good at talking,” Naoko said. “Haven’t been for the longest while. I start to say something and the wrong words come out. Wrong or sometimes completely backward. I try to go back and correct it, but things get even more complicated and confused, so that I don’t even remember what I started to say in the first place. Like I was split into two or something, one half chasing the other. And there’s this big pillar in the middle and they go chasing each other around and around it. The other me always latches onto the right word and this me absolutely never catches up
Haruki Murakami (Norwegian Wood)
The entire hospital seemed to go still, watching and waiting, and what the hell was up with Sin and guys on horses anyway? "Well, who is he?" "War." Con stared at her. "War. Just...War. What kind of name is that?" Nope, not jealous at all of muscle-bound handsome guy. "Yeah, you know, the original War. Second Horseman of the Apocalypse?" Con nearly swallowed his fucking tongue. Everyone else in the ER scrambled backward. Even Eidolon backed up a step as the guy swung down from the horse. Christ, standing, the guy was damned near seven feet tall. "Sin," he said in an impossibly deep voice. He approached her, bent to kiss her cheek, and Con bristled. "Big horse," Con ground out. "Compensating much?
Larissa Ione (Sin Undone (Demonica, #5))
The cord pulled taut and she rebounded, flying back up before falling again. As her velocity slowed, she opened her eyes and found herself dangling at the end of the cord, about five feet above Jace. He was grinning. "Nice," he said. "As graceful as a falling snowflake." "Was I screaming?" She asked, genuinely curious. "You know, on the way down." He nodded. "Thankfully no one's home, or they would have assumed I was murdering you." "Ha. You can't even reach me." She kicked out a leg and spun lazily in midair. Jace's eyes glinted. "Want to bet?" Clary knew that expression. "No," she said quickly. "Whatever you're going to do-" But he'd already done it. When Jace moved fast, his individual movements were almost invisible. She saw his hand go to his belt, and then something flashed in the air. She heard the sound of parting fabric as the cord above her head was sheared through. Released, she fell freely, too surprised to scream- directly into Jace's arms. The force knocked him backward, and they sprawled together onto one of the padded floor mats, Clary on top of him. He grinned up at her. "Now," he said, "that was much better. You didn't scream at all." "I didn't get the chance." She was breathless, and not just from the impact of the fall. Being sprawled on top of Jace, feeling his body against hers, made her hands shake and her heart beat faster.
Cassandra Clare (City of Glass (The Mortal Instruments, #3))
We can stick anything into the fog and make it look like a ghost but tonight let us not become tragedies. We are not funeral homes with propane tanks in our windows, lookin’ like cemeteries. Cemeteries are just the Earth’s way of not letting go. Let go. Tonight let’s turn our silly wrists so far backwards the razor blades in our pencil tips can’t get a good angle on all that beauty inside. Step into this with your airplane parts. Move forward and repeat after me with your heart: “I no longer need you to fuck me as hard as I hated myself.” Make love to me like you know I am better than the worst thing I ever did. Go slow. I’m new to this. But I have seen nearly every city from a rooftop without jumping. I have realized that the moon did not have to be full for us to love it, that we are not tragedies stranded here beneath it, that if my heart really broke every time I fell from love I’d be able to offer you confetti by now. But hearts don’t break, y’all, they bruise and get better. We were never tragedies. We were emergencies. You call 9 – 1 – 1. Tell them I’m having a fantastic time.
Buddy Wakefield
Tolkien, who created this marvellous vehicle, doesn't go anywhere in it. He just sits where he is. What I mean by that is that he always seems to be looking backwards, to a greater and more golden past; and what's more he doesn't allow girls or women any important part in the story at all. Life is bigger and more interesting than The Lord of the Rings thinks it is.
Philip Pullman
You don’t get to leave me. Do you understand?” Cupping my face, he wrenched me backward and kissed me hard. His voice was fierce. His eyes were fiercer. They burned into mine, angry and anguished and afraid. “You don’t get to do this alone. If you retreat into your mind—into your magic—I’ll follow you, Lou.” He shook me slightly, tears glistening in those frightened eyes. “I’ll follow you into that darkness, and I’ll bring you back. Do you hear me? Where you go, I will go.
Shelby Mahurin (Blood & Honey (Serpent & Dove, #2))
Motivation will keep you going forwards, Hesitation will only drag you backwards.
Mouloud Benzadi
Strigoi have red eyes, " I explained. "Do his eyes look red?" The boy leaned forward. "No. They're brown. " "What else do you know about Strigoi?" I asked. "They have fangs like us, " the boy replied. "Do you have fangs?" I asked Dimitri in a singsong voice. I had a feeling this was already-covered territory, but it took on a new feel when asked from a child's perspective. Dimitri smiled--a full, wonderful smile that caught me off guard. "Okay, Jonathan, " said his mother anxiously. "You asked. Let's go now. " "Strigoi are super strong, " continued Jonathan, who possibly aspired to be a future lawyer. "Nothing can hurt them. " Jonathan fixed Dimitri with a piercing gaze. "Are you super strong? Can you be hurt?" "Of course I can, " replied Dimitri. "I'm strong, but all sorts of things can still hurt me. " And then, being Rose Hathaway, I said something I really shouldn't have to the boy. "You should go punch him and find out. " Jonathan's mother screamed again, but he was a fast little bastard, eluding her grasp. He ran up to Dimitri before anyone could stop him--well, I could have--and pounded his tiny fist against Dimitri's knee. Then, with the same reflexes that allowed him to dodge enemy attacks, Dimitri immediately feinted falling backward, as though Jonathan had knocked him over. Clutching his knee, Dimitri groaned as though he were in terrible pain. Several people laughed, and by then, one of the other guardians had caught hold of Jonathan and returned him to his near-hysterical mother. As he was being dragged away, Jonathan glanced over his shoulder at Dimitri. "He doesn't seem very strong to me. I don't think he's a Strigoi. " This caused more laughter
Richelle Mead (Spirit Bound (Vampire Academy, #5))
Lovers' reading of each other's bodies (of that concentrate of mind and body which lovers use to go to bed together) differs from the reading of written pages in that it is not linear. It starts at any point, skips, repeat itself, goes backward, insists, ramifies in simultaneous and divergent messages, converges again, has moments of irritation, turns the page, finds its place, gets lost. A direction can be recognized in it, a route to an end, since it tends toward a climax, and with this end in view it arranges rhythmic phases, metrical scansions, recurrence of motives. But is the climax really the end? Or is the race toward that end opposed by another drive which works in the opposite direction, swimming against moments, recovering time?
Italo Calvino (If on a Winter's Night a Traveler)
Sometimes what makes us insecure and vulnerable becomes the fuel we need to be overachievers. The antidote for a snakebite is made from the poison, and the thing that made you go backward is the same force that will push you forward.
T.D. Jakes (Reposition Yourself: Living Life Without Limits)
Entrepreneurs aren’t looking to go backward. They are looking to go forward, toward their prize of realizing their dreams.
Curtis L. Jenkins (Vision to Reality: Stop Working, Start Living)
You don’t need fashion designers when you are young. Have faith in your own bad taste. Buy the cheapest thing in your local thrift shop - the clothes that are freshly out of style with even the hippest people a few years older than you. Get on the fashion nerves of your peers, not your parents - that is the key to fashion leadership. Ill-fitting is always stylish. But be more creative - wear your clothes inside out, backward, upside down. Throw bleach in a load of colored laundry. Follow the exact opposite of the dry cleaning instructions inside the clothes that cost the most in your thrift shop. Don’t wear jewelry - stick Band-Aids on your wrists or make a necklace out of them. Wear Scotch tape on the side of your face like a bad face-lift attempt. Mismatch your shoes. Best yet, do as Mink Stole used to do: go to the thrift store the day after Halloween, when the children’s trick-or-treat costumes are on sale, buy one, and wear it as your uniform of defiance.
John Waters (Role Models)
When you focus on lack and scarcity and what you don’t have, you fuss about it with your family, you discuss it with your friends, you tell your children that you don’t have enough - “We don’t have enough for that, we can’t afford that” - then you’ll never be able to afford it, because you begin to attract more of what you don’t have. If you want abundance, if you want prosperity, then focus on abundance. Focus on prosperity. (Lisa Nichols) Many people in Western culture are striving for success. They want the great home, they want their business to work, they want all these outer things. But what we found in our research is that having these outer things does not necessarily guarantee what we really want, which is happiness. So we go for these outer things thinking they’re going to bring us happiness , but it’s backward. You need to go for the inner joy, the inner peace, the inner vision first, and then all of the outer things appear. (Marci Shimoff)
Rhonda Byrne (The Secret (The Secret, #1))
Thaniel listened for a while longer, because the silence was so deep and clear that he could hear ghosts of the thirty-six of thirty-seven possible worlds in which Grace had not won at the roulette, and not stepped backward into him. He wished then that he could go back and that the ball had landed on another number. He would be none the wiser and he would be staying at Filigree Street, probably for years, still happy, and he wouldn't have stolen those years from a lonely man who was too decent to mention that they were missing.
Natasha Pulley (The Watchmaker of Filigree Street (The Watchmaker of Filigree Street, #1))
MR.GOUDY: I believe you testified that you backed away from Aaron Wharton. MR.COGBURN: That is right. MR.GOUDY: You were backing away? MR.COGBURN: Yes sir. He had that ax raised. MR.GOUDY: Which direction were you going? MR.COGBURN: I always go backwards when I am backing up.
Charles Portis (True Grit)
I do like him. I'm sick of just liking people. I wish to God I could meet somebody I could respect.... .... Listen, don't hate me because I can't remember some person immediately. Especially when they look like everybody else, and talk and dress and act like everybody else." Franny made her voice stop. It sounded to her caviling and bitchy, and she felt a wave of self-hatred that, quite literally, made her forehead begin to perspire again. But her voice picked up again, in spite of herself. "I don't mean there's anything horrible about him or anything like that. It's just that for four solid years I've kept seeing Wally Campbells wherever I go. I know when they're going to be charming, I know when they're going to start telling you some really nasty gossip about some girl that lives in your dorm, I know when they're going to ask me what I did over the summer, I know when they're going to pull up a chair and straddle it backward and start bragging in a terribly, terribly quiet voice--or name-dropping in a terribly quiet, casual voice. There's an unwritten law that people in a certain social or financial bracket can name-drop as much as they like just as long as they say something terribly disparaging about the person as soon as they've dropped his name—that he's a bastard or a nymphomaniac or takes dope all the time, or something horrible." She broke off again. She was quiet for a moment, turning the ashtray in her fingers. Franny quickly tipped her cigarette ash, then brought the ashtray an inch closer to her side of the table. "I'm sorry. I'm awful," she said. "I've just felt so destructive all week. It's awful, I'm horrible.
J.D. Salinger (Franny and Zooey)
I got schooled this year. By everyone. By my little brother... by The Avett Brothers... by my mother, my best friend, my teacher, my father, and by a boy. a boy that I'm seriously, deeply, madly, incredibly, and undeniably in love with... I got so schooled this year. By a nine-year-old. He taught me that it's okay to live life a little backwards. And how to laugh At what you would think is un-laughable. I got schooled this year By a Band! They taught me how to find that feeling of feeling again. They taught me how to decide what to be And go be it. I got schooled this year. By a cancer patient. She taught me so much. She's still teaching me so much. She taught me to question. To never regret. She taught me to push my boundaries, Because that's what they're there for. She told me to find a balance between head and heart And then she taught me how... I got schooled this year By a Foster Kid She taught me to respect the hand that I was dealt. And to be grateful I was even dealt a hand. She taught me that family Doesn't have to be blood. Sometimes your family are your friends. I got schooled this year By my teacher He taught me That the points are not the point, The point is poetry... I got schooled this year By my father. He taught me that hero's aren't always invincible And that the magic is within me.. I got schooled this year by a Boy. a boy that I'm seriously, deeply, madly, incredibly, and undeniably in love with. And he taught me the most important thing of all... To put the emphasis On life.
Colleen Hoover
Kenzie took two staggering steps backward, staring at the feeline as if in a daze. "O-kay," she breathed, shaking her head slightly. "A cat. A cat that talks. I'm going crazy." she glanced at me. " Or you slipped something into my drink at the tournament. One or the other.
Julie Kagawa (The Lost Prince (The Iron Fey: Call of the Forgotten, #1))
As they split to prepare for the meeting with the Ravkans, Jesper followed Wylan down the hall. “Hey.” Wylan kept going. Jesper jogged past him and cut off his path, walking backward. “Listen, this thing with Kuwei isn’t a thing.” He tried again. “There is no thing with Kuwei.” “You don’t owe me an explanation. I’m the one who interrupted.” “No, you didn’t! Kuwei was sitting at the piano. It was an understandable mistake.” Wylan stopped short. “You thought he was me?” “Yes!” Jesper said. “See? Just a big mis—” Wylan’s gold eyes flashed. “You really can’t tell us apart?” “I … I mean, usually I can, but—” “We’re nothing alike,” Wylan said indignantly. “He’s not even that good at science! Half his notebooks are full of doodles. Mostly of you. And those aren’t good either.
Leigh Bardugo (Crooked Kingdom (Six of Crows, #2))
I had as yet no notion that life every now and then becomes literature—not for long, of course, but long enough to be what we best remember, and often enough so that what we eventually come to mean by life are those moments when life, instead of going sideways, backwards, forward, or nowhere at all, lines out straight, tense and inevitable, with a complication, climax, and, given some luck, a purgation, as if life had been made and not happened.
Norman Maclean (A River Runs Through It and Other Stories)
Treat all men alike.... give them all the same law. Give them all an even chance to live and grow. You might as well expect the rivers to run backward as that any man who is born a free man should be contented when penned up and denied liberty to go where he pleases. We only ask an even chance to live as other men live. We ask to be recognized as men. Let me be a free man...free to travel... free to stop...free to work...free to choose my own teachers...free to follow the religion of my Fathers...free to think and talk and act for myself.
Dee Brown (Bury My Heart at Wounded Knee: An Indian History of the American West)
My sweet little whorish Nora I did as you told me, you dirty little girl, and pulled myself off twice when I read your letter. I am delighted to see that you do like being fucked arseways. Yes, now I can remember that night when I fucked you for so long backwards. It was the dirtiest fucking I ever gave you, darling. My prick was stuck in you for hours, fucking in and out under your upturned rump. I felt your fat sweaty buttocks under my belly and saw your flushed face and mad eyes. At every fuck I gave you your shameless tongue came bursting out through your lips and if a gave you a bigger stronger fuck than usual, fat dirty farts came spluttering out of your backside. You had an arse full of farts that night, darling, and I fucked them out of you, big fat fellows, long windy ones, quick little merry cracks and a lot of tiny little naughty farties ending in a long gush from your hole. It is wonderful to fuck a farting woman when every fuck drives one out of her. I think I would know Nora’s fart anywhere. I think I could pick hers out in a roomful of farting women. It is a rather girlish noise not like the wet windy fart which I imagine fat wives have. It is sudden and dry and dirty like what a bold girl would let off in fun in a school dormitory at night. I hope Nora will let off no end of her farts in my face so that I may know their smell also. You say when I go back you will suck me off and you want me to lick your cunt, you little depraved blackguard. I hope you will surprise me some time when I am asleep dressed, steal over to me with a whore’s glow in your slumberous eyes, gently undo button after button in the fly of my trousers and gently take out your lover’s fat mickey, lap it up in your moist mouth and suck away at it till it gets fatter and stiffer and comes off in your mouth. Sometimes too I shall surprise you asleep, lift up your skirts and open your drawers gently, then lie down gently by you and begin to lick lazily round your bush. You will begin to stir uneasily then I will lick the lips of my darling’s cunt. You will begin to groan and grunt and sigh and fart with lust in your sleep. Then I will lick up faster and faster like a ravenous dog until your cunt is a mass of slime and your body wriggling wildly. Goodnight, my little farting Nora, my dirty little fuckbird! There is one lovely word, darling, you have underlined to make me pull myself off better. Write me more about that and yourself, sweetly, dirtier, dirtier.
James Joyce (Selected Letters of James Joyce)
Though you did eat all the pizza." "I only had five slices," Simon protested, leaning his chair backward so it balanced precariously on its two back legs. "How many slices did you think were in a pizza, dork?" Clary wanted to know. "Less than five slices isn't a meal. It's a snack." Simon looked apprehensively at Luke. "Does this mean you're going to wolf out and eat me?" "Certainly not." Luke rose to toss the pizza box into the trash. "You would be stringy and hard to digest.
Cassandra Clare (City of Ashes (The Mortal Instruments, #2))
Racing up the wide staircase, I barreled through the double doors and smacked right into a brick wall. Stumbling backward, my arms flailed like a cracked-out crossing guard. My over-packed messenger bag slipped, pulling me to one side. My hair flew it front of my face, a sheet of auburn that obscured everything as I teetered dangerously. Oh dear God, I was going down. There was no stopping it. Visions of broken necks danced in my head. This was going to suck so— Something strong and hard went around my waist, stopping my free fall. My bag hit the floor, spilling overpriced books and pens across the shiny floor. My pens! My glorious pens rolled everywhere. A second later I was pressed against the wall. The wall was strangely warm. The wall chuckled. “Whoa,” a deep voice said. “You okay, sweetheart?
J. Lynn (Wait for You (Wait for You, #1))
And then, being Rose Hathaway, I said something I really shouldn't have to the boy. "You should go punch him and find out." Jonathan's mother screamed again, but he was a fast little bastard, eluding her grasp. He ran up to Dimitri before anyone could stop him - well, I could have - and pounded his tiny fist against Dimitri's knee. Then, with the same reflexes that allowed him to dodge enemy attacks, Dimitri immediately feinted falling backward, as though Jonathan had knocked him over. Clutching his knee, Dimitri groaned as though he were in terrible pain.
Richelle Mead (Spirit Bound (Vampire Academy, #5))
At the time of this writing, Donald Trump seeks the Republican nomination supported largely by a bunch of angry white people who sense where history is going and DO NOT LIKE IT AT ALL and are therefore hoping that if they punch and shove enough brown people, it will fix it. Perhaps when you read this, Donald Trump will be president or maybe superking. But even if that happens, he shall pass. Time does not go backward.
Phoebe Robinson (You Can't Touch My Hair: And Other Things I Still Have to Explain)
The seven of us slipped onto the porch and down the deck stairs, finding lawn chairs to sit in under a giant oak tree. Kaidan leaned back in his chair, balancing it on the back two legs. “How about a game of Truth or Dare?” Marna offered. I was immediately apprehensive. Just as I was about to suggest something else, Kaidan spoke and my heart faltered. “I'll go first,” he said. “I dare Kope to kiss Anna.” Everything inside me flooded with fury and embarrassment. Kaidan leaned far back with his arms crossed, cocky. I stood up without thinking and hooked my foot under his chair, swiftly kicking upward and causing him to topple backward. He looked up at me from the ground with a stunned expression that morphed into a grin. The twins and Blake were in hysterics. Blake laughed so hard he fell sideways out of his own chair, which made Jay join in the laughter. I couldn't sit there with them anymore. This whole night was a disaster. I turned and walked through the yard, toward the side of the house. I heard Ginger talk between gasps of mirth. “Maybe she's not so bad after all!
Wendy Higgins (Sweet Evil (Sweet, #1))
Where has God gone?” [the madman asked] “I shall tell you. We have killed him – you and I. We are his murderers. But how have we done this? How were we able to drink up the seas? Who gave us the sponge to wipe away the entire horizon? What did we do when we unchained the earth from its sun? Whither is it moving now? Whither are we moving now? Away from all suns? Are we not perpetually falling? Backwards, sideward, forward, in all directions? Is there any up or down left? Are we not straying as though through Infinite nothing? Where is God? God is Dead. Go remains dead. And we have killed him. How shall we, murders of all murders, console ourselves?
Friedrich Nietzsche (The Gay Science: With a Prelude in Rhymes and an Appendix of Songs)
Feminists don’t single out rape jokes because rape is “worse” than other crimes—we single them out because we live in a culture that actively strives to shrink the definition of sexual assault; that casts stalking behaviors as romance; blames victims for wearing the wrong clothes, walking through the wrong neighborhood, or flirting with the wrong person; bends over backwards to excuse boys-will-be-boys misogyny; makes the emotional and social costs of reporting a rape prohibitively high; pretends that false accusations are a more dire problem than actual assaults; elects officials who tell rape victims that their sexual violation was “god’s plan”; and convicts in less than 5 percent of rape cases that go to trial.
Lindy West (Shrill: Notes from a Loud Woman)
Julie marched over to Matt. She stood in front of him and crossed her arms. “Lift up your sweatshirt.” Matt rolled his eyes. “God, you really know how to turn a guy on.” Julie didn’t budge. “If I was trying to turn you on, I could do better than that. Now, lift up your sweatshirt.” Matt looked up at her and tried to look serious. “Julie, I’m completely offended that you have so little faith in my honesty. I thought at this point in our friendship that you would at least—” “Get up.” Julie leaned over and shut his laptop. “Get up!” she said again. “You’re being ridiculous,” Matt said laughing, but he stood up. “I trust you implicitly, and it wouldn’t kill you to show me the same respect.” “Show me!” Matt sidestepped the chair and took a few steps backward. “You have quite the attitude today. Suspicious and mean.” Julie took a step forward, causing Matt to continue backing away. “Lift up your shirt.” “Look, I appreciate an aggressive woman, but this is really getting weird.” Julie grabbed his sweatshirt by the waist cuff and lifted it up with one hand, as she pulled down his T-shirt with the other. Matt put his hands over hers, lightly protesting, but she refused to let go. “Aha!” She squinted at his shirt. “OK, I don’t even know what this is, but it’s definitely geeky.
Jessica Park (Flat-Out Love (Flat-Out Love, #1))
One of those out-of-the-ordinary days that made sense of the slew of ordinary days. New York had a way of doing that. Every now and then the city shook its soul out. It assailed you with an image, or a day, or a crime, or a terror, or a beauty so difficult to wrap your mind around that you had to shake your head in disbelief. He had a theory about it. It happened, and re-happened, because it was a city uninterested in history. Strange things occurred precisely because there was no necessary regard for the past. The city lived in a sort of everyday present. It had no need to believe in itself as a London, or an Athens, or even a signifier of the New World, like a Sydney, or a Los Angeles. No, the city couldn’t care less about where it stood. He had seen a T-shirt once that said: NEW YORK FUCKIN’ CITY. As if it were the only place that ever existed and the only one that ever would. New York kept going forward precisely because it didn’t give a good goddamn about what it had left behind. It was like the city that Lot left, and it would dissolve if it ever began looking backward over its own shoulder. Two pillars of salt. Long Island and New Jersey.
Colum McCann (Let the Great World Spin)
A Dream As the Earth began spinning faster and faster, we floated upwards, hands locked tightly together, eyes sad and bewildered. We watched as our faces grew younger and realized the Earth was spinning in reverse, moving us backwards in time. Then we reached a point where I no longer knew who you were and I was grasping the hands of a stranger. But I didn't let go. And neither did you. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . I had my first dream about you last night. Really? She smiles. What was it about? I don't remember exactly, but the whole time I was dreaming, I knew you were mine.
Lang Leav (Love & Misadventure)
Last night he spent an hour and a half lying on the floor of his room, because he was too tired to complete the journey from his en suite back to his bed. There was the en suite, behind him, and there was the bed, in front of him, both well within view, but somehow it was impossible to move either forward or backward, only downward, onto the floor, until his body was arranged motionless on the carpet. Well, here I am on the floor, he thought. Is life so much worse here than it would be on the bed, or even in a totally different location? No, life is exactly the same. Life is the thing you bring with you inside your own head. I might as well be lying here, breathing the vile dust of the carpet into my lungs, gradually feeling my right arm go numb under the weight of my body, because it’s essentially the same as every other possible experience.
Sally Rooney (Normal People)
Where are you going?" I asked, as Frank swung his feet off the bed. "I'd hate the dear old thing to be disappointed in us," he answered. Sitting up on the side of the ancient bed, he bounced gently up and down, creating a piercing rhythmic squeak. The Hoovering in the hall stopped abruptly. After a minute or two of bouncing, he gave a loud, theatrical groan and collapsed backward with a twang of protesting springs. I giggled helplessly into a pillow, so as not to disturb the breathless silence outside. Frank waggled his eyebrows at me. "You're supposed to moan ecstatically, not giggle," he admonished in a whisper. "She'll think I'm not a good lover." "You'll have to keep it up for longer than that, if you expect ecstatic moans," I answered. "Two minutes doesn't deserve any more than a giggle." "Inconsiderate little wench. I came here for a rest, remember?" "Lazybones. You'll never manage the next branch on your family tree unless you show a bit more industry than that.
Diana Gabaldon (Outlander (Outlander, #1))
How do you get the happy ending? John Irving ought to know. One of my favorite authors, Irving writes these multigenerational epics of fiction that somehow work out in the end. How does he do it? He says, 'I always begin with the last sentence ; then I work my way backwards, through the plot, to where the story should begin.' That sounds like a lot of work, especially compared to the fantasy that great writers sit down and just go where the story takes them. Irving lets us know that good stories and happy endings are more intentional than that. Most 20 something's can't write the last sentence of their lives. But when pressed, they usually can identify things they want in their 30s or 40s or 60s -or things they don't want- and work backward from there. This is how you have your own multigenerational epic with a happy ending. This is how you live your life in real time.
Meg Jay
It’s not a crime to wish for other worlds. You’ll get taxed for it but they can’t throw you in jail for creating your own private world…yet. Dramatics are fun, an indulgence. ‘You can’t go backward,’ ‘You can’t live in the past,’ they tell you. Why not? ‘You’ve got to put all that behind you and move on to other things,’ they say. Bullshit! These are all expressions of modern disposability. It’s a mediocritizing technique—trying to get rid of what I call ‘past orthodoxies.’ It’s our past that makes us unique, therefore it’s our past that economic interests want to rob from us, so they can sell us a new, improved future. Society now depends on a disposable world—out with the old, in with the new, including relationships. But how we weep and wish we could hold onto those cherished moments forever, to those long-whispered dreams, those tortured nights—how we want to grasp them and stop them from sifting through our fingers. I say, ‘Don’t let it happen. Keep things the way you want them and let the rest of the world be duped.
Anton Szandor LaVey (The Secret Life of a Satanist: The Authorized Biography of Anton LaVey)
Trippers and askers surround me, People I meet, the effect upon me of my early life or the ward and city I live in, or the nation, The latest dates, discoveries, inventions, societies, authors old and new, My dinner, dress, associates, looks, compliments, dues, The real or fancied indifference of some man or woman I love, The sickness of one of my folks or of myself, or ill-doing or loss or lack of money, or depressions or exaltations, Battles, the horrors of fratricidal war, the fever of doubtful news, the fitful events; These come to me days and nights and go from me again, But they are not the Me myself. Apart from the pulling and hauling stands what I am, Stands amused, complacent, compassionating, idle, unitary, Looks down, is erect, or bends an arm on an impalpable certain rest, Looking with side-curved head curious what will come next, Both in and out of the game and watching and wondering at it. Backward I see in my own days where I sweated through fog with linguists and contenders, I have no mockings or arguments, I witness and wait.
Walt Whitman (Song of Myself)
You’re implying that I’m not presentable in public unless I have a full face of makeup on.” “No. I absolutely did not imply that.” “I suppose I should take three hours to curl my hair, too, right?” I make my voice tremble. I am the victim of horrendous misdeeds. “Because I’m not pretty enough the way I am? I suppose you’re embarrassed to bring me around your family unless I conform to society’s impossible beauty standards for females?” His eyes narrow. “You’re right. Your hair’s an embarrassment in its natural state and your face is so anti–female beauty that if you go out like that, I’d insist on you walking backward and ten feet away from me. I want you to go upstairs right now and paint yourself unrecognizable.” He arches his eyebrows. “Did I do that right? Are those the words you’d like to put in my mouth?” My chin drops. He lowers his gaze to a newspaper and flicks the page. He did it for dramatic effect. I know he didn’t get a chance to finish reading the article he was on. “Actually, I’d like to put an apple in your mouth and roast you on a spit,” I say. “Go ahead and wear pajamas to dinner, Naomi. You think that would bother me? You can go out dressed as Santa Claus and I wouldn’t care.” Now I genuinely am insulted. “Why wouldn’t you care?” He raises his eyes to mine. “Because I think you’re beautiful no matter what.” Ugh. That’s really low, even for him.
Sarah Hogle (You Deserve Each Other)
We are marching in a compact group along a precipitous and difficult path, firmly holding each other by the hand. We are surrounded on all sides by enemies, and we have to advance almost constantly under their fire. We have combined, by a freely adopted decision, for the purpose of fighting the enemy, and not of retreating into the neighbouring marsh, the inhabitants of which, from the very outset, have reproached us with having separated ourselves into an exclusive group and with having chosen the path of struggle instead of the path of conciliation. And now some among us begin to cry out: Let us go into the marsh! And when we begin to shame them, they retort: What backward people you are! Are you not ashamed to deny us the liberty to invite you to take a better road! Oh, yes, gentlemen! You are free not only to invite us, but to go yourselves wherever you will, even into the marsh. In fact, we think that the marsh is your proper place, and we are prepared to render you every assistance to get there. Only let go of our hands, don't clutch at us and don't besmirch the grand word freedom, for we too are "free" to go where we please, free to fight not only against the marsh, but also against those who are turning towards the marsh!
Vladimir Lenin (What Is to Be Done?)
See that little stream — we could walk to it in two minutes. It took the British a month to walk to it — a whole empire walking very slowly, dying in front and pushing forward behind. And another empire walked very slowly backward a few inches a day, leaving the dead like a million bloody rugs. No Europeans will ever do that again in this generation.” “Why, they’ve only just quit over in Turkey,” said Abe. “And in Morocco —” “That’s different. This western-front business couldn’t be done again, not for a long time. The young men think they could do it but they couldn’t. They could fight the first Marne again but not this. This took religion and years of plenty and tremendous sureties and the exact relation that existed between the classes. The Russians and Italians weren’t any good on this front. You had to have a whole-souled sentimental equipment going back further than you could remember. You had to remember Christmas, and postcards of the Crown Prince and his fiancée, and little cafés in Valence and beer gardens in Unter den Linden and weddings at the mairie, and going to the Derby, and your grandfather’s whiskers.” “General Grant invented this kind of battle at Petersburg in sixty- five.” “No, he didn’t — he just invented mass butchery. This kind of battle was invented by Lewis Carroll and Jules Verne and whoever wrote Undine, and country deacons bowling and marraines in Marseilles and girls seduced in the back lanes of Wurtemburg and Westphalia. Why, this was a love battle — there was a century of middle-class love spent here. This was the last love battle.
F. Scott Fitzgerald (Tender is the Night)
GONE TO STATIC it sounds better than it is, this business of surviving, making it through the wrong place at the wrong time and living to tell. when the talk shows and movie credits wear off, it's just me and my dumb luck. this morning I had that dream again: the one where I'm dead. I wake up and nothing's much different. everything's gone sepia, a dirty bourbon glass by the bed, you're still dead. I could stumble to the shower, scrub the luck of breath off my skin but it's futile. the killer always wins. it's just a matter of time. and I have time. I have grief and liquor to fill it. tonight, the liquor and I are talking to you. the liquor says, 'remember' and I fill in the rest, your hands, your smile. all those times. remember. tonight the liquor and I are telling you about our day. we made it out of bed. we miss you. we were surprised by the blood between our legs. we miss you. we made it to the video store, missing you. we stopped at the liquor store hoping the bourbon would stop the missing. there's always more bourbon, more missing tonight, when we got home, there was a stray cat at the door. she came in. she screams to be touched. she screams when I touch her. she's right at home. not me. the whisky is open the vcr is on. I'm running the film backwards and one by one you come back to me, all of you. your pulses stutter to a begin your eyes go from fixed to blink the knives come out of your chests, the chainsaws roar out from your legs your wounds seal over your t-cells multiply, your tumors shrink the maniac killer disappears it's just you and me and the bourbon and the movie flickering together and the air breathes us and I am home, I am lucky I am right before everything goes black
Daphne Gottlieb (Final Girl)
The door flew open, almost smacking me in my face. I opened my mouth to yell at the asshole busting the door, but stopped the moment i came face-to-face with my own personal siren, my nymph-Echo. This time, she wouldn't walk away. Wrapping my arms around her, I walked her backward into the brick. "Tell me you chose me, Echo." She licked her lips. Those green eyes smoldered, calling me to her. "I chose you." For the first time in three years, the coil forever tightened in my gut relaxed. "You will never regret it. I promise." I wanted her. All of her, but Echo deserved more than a quick thrill and better than a guy like me. Everything needed to be slow and deliberate. I wanted to blow her mind with every touch and every kiss so her every thought always came back to me. I would never touch anyone else again without thinking about her. I'd promised she would be more and i needed to keep that promise. Tearing my self away, i took her delicate hand in mine and headed toward my car. "Come on." "Where are we going?" I opened the passenger door and turned to face her. Echo's innocent eyes were wide with comfusion. She wouldn't be with me. We'd both been through hell, but Echo deserved better. Still, i wasn't all bad. I used to be good, like her, She needed to know that. "Someplace special.
Katie McGarry (Pushing the Limits (Pushing the Limits, #1))
On the first day of November last year, sacred to many religious calendars but especially the Celtic, I went for a walk among bare oaks and birch. Nothing much was going on. Scarlet sumac had passed and the bees were dead. The pond had slicked overnight into that shiny and deceptive glaze of delusion, first ice. It made me remember sakes and conjure a vision of myself skimming backward on one foot, the other extended; the arms become wings. Minnesota girls know that this is not a difficult maneuver if one's limber and practices even a little after school before the boys claim the rink for hockey. I think I can still do it - one thinks many foolish things when November's bright sun skips over the entrancing first freeze. A flock of sparrows reels through the air looking more like a flying net than seventy conscious birds, a black veil thrown on the wind. When one sparrow dodges, the whole net swerves, dips: one mind. Am I part of anything like that? Maybe not. The last few years of my life have been characterized by stripping away, one by one, loves and communities that sustain the soul. A young colleague, new to my English department, recently asked me who I hang around with at school. "Nobody," I had to say, feeling briefly ashamed. This solitude is one of the surprises of middle age, especially if one's youth has been rich in love and friendship and children. If you do your job right, children leave home; few communities can stand an individual's most pitiful, amateur truth telling. So the soul must stand in her own meager feathers and learn to fly - or simply take hopeful jumps into the wind. In the Christian calendar, November 1 is the Feast of All Saints, a day honoring not only those who are known and recognized as enlightened souls, but more especially the unknowns, saints who walk beside us unrecognized down the millennia. In Buddhism, we honor the bodhisattvas - saints - who refuse enlightenment and return willingly to the wheel of karma to help other beings. Similarly, in Judaism, anonymous holy men pray the world from its well-merited destruction. We never know who is walking beside us, who is our spiritual teacher. That one - who annoys you so - pretends for a day that he's the one, your personal Obi Wan Kenobi. The first of November is a splendid, subversive holiday. Imagine a hectic procession of revelers - the half-mad bag lady; a mumbling, scarred janitor whose ravaged face made the children turn away; the austere, unsmiling mother superior who seemed with great focus and clarity to do harm; a haunted music teacher, survivor of Auschwitz. I bring them before my mind's eye, these old firends of my soul, awakening to dance their day. Crazy saints; but who knows what was home in the heart? This is the feast of those who tried to take the path, so clumsily that no one knew or notice, the feast, indeed, of most of us. It's an ugly woods, I was saying to myself, padding along a trail where other walkers had broken ground before me. And then I found an extraordinary bouquet. Someone had bound an offering of dry seed pods, yew, lyme grass, red berries, and brown fern and laid it on the path: "nothing special," as Buddhists say, meaning "everything." Gathered to formality, each dry stalk proclaimed a slant, an attitude, infinite shades of neutral. All contemplative acts, silences, poems, honor the world this way. Brought together by the eye of love, a milkweed pod, a twig, allow us to see how things have been all along. A feast of being.
Mary Rose O'Reilley (The Barn at the End of the World: The Apprenticeship of a Quaker, Buddhist Shepherd)
I. My first thought was, he lied in every word, That hoary cripple, with malicious eye Askance to watch the workings of his lie On mine, and mouth scarce able to afford Suppression of the glee, that pursed and scored Its edge, at one more victim gained thereby. II. What else should he be set for, with his staff? What, save to waylay with his lies, ensnare All travellers who might find him posted there, And ask the road? I guessed what skull-like laugh Would break, what crutch 'gin write my epitaph For pastime in the dusty thoroughfare. III. If at his counsel I should turn aside Into that ominous tract which, all agree, Hides the Dark Tower. Yet acquiescingly I did turn as he pointed, neither pride Now hope rekindling at the end descried, So much as gladness that some end might be. IV. For, what with my whole world-wide wandering, What with my search drawn out through years, my hope Dwindled into a ghost not fit to cope With that obstreperous joy success would bring, I hardly tried now to rebuke the spring My heart made, finding failure in its scope. V. As when a sick man very near to death Seems dead indeed, and feels begin and end The tears and takes the farewell of each friend, And hears one bit the other go, draw breath Freelier outside, ('since all is o'er,' he saith And the blow fallen no grieving can amend;') VI. When some discuss if near the other graves be room enough for this, and when a day Suits best for carrying the corpse away, With care about the banners, scarves and staves And still the man hears all, and only craves He may not shame such tender love and stay. VII. Thus, I had so long suffered in this quest, Heard failure prophesied so oft, been writ So many times among 'The Band' to wit, The knights who to the Dark Tower's search addressed Their steps - that just to fail as they, seemed best, And all the doubt was now - should I be fit? VIII. So, quiet as despair I turned from him, That hateful cripple, out of his highway Into the path he pointed. All the day Had been a dreary one at best, and dim Was settling to its close, yet shot one grim Red leer to see the plain catch its estray. IX. For mark! No sooner was I fairly found Pledged to the plain, after a pace or two, Than, pausing to throw backwards a last view O'er the safe road, 'twas gone; grey plain all round; Nothing but plain to the horizon's bound. I might go on, naught else remained to do. X. So on I went. I think I never saw Such starved ignoble nature; nothing throve: For flowers - as well expect a cedar grove! But cockle, spurge, according to their law Might propagate their kind with none to awe, You'd think; a burr had been a treasure trove. XI. No! penury, inertness and grimace, In some strange sort, were the land's portion. 'See Or shut your eyes,' said Nature peevishly, It nothing skills: I cannot help my case: Tis the Last Judgement's fire must cure this place Calcine its clods and set my prisoners free.
Robert Browning
He looks up. Our eyes lock,and he breaks into a slow smile. My heart beats faster and faster. Almost there.He sets down his book and stands.And then this-the moment he calls my name-is the real moment everything changes. He is no longer St. Clair, everyone's pal, everyone's friend. He is Etienne. Etienne,like the night we met. He is Etienne,he is my friend. He is so much more. Etienne.My feet trip in three syllables. E-ti-enne. E-ti-enne, E-ti-enne. His name coats my tongue like melting chocolate. He is so beautiful, so perfect. My throat catches as he opens his arms and wraps me in a hug.My heart pounds furiously,and I'm embarrassed,because I know he feels it. We break apart, and I stagger backward. He catches me before I fall down the stairs. "Whoa," he says. But I don't think he means me falling. I blush and blame it on clumsiness. "Yeesh,that could've been bad." Phew.A steady voice. He looks dazed. "Are you all right?" I realize his hands are still on my shoulders,and my entire body stiffens underneath his touch. "Yeah.Great. Super!" "Hey,Anna. How was your break?" John.I forget he was here.Etienne lets go of me carefully as I acknowledge Josh,but the whole time we're chatting, I wish he'd return to drawing and leave us alone. After a minute, he glances behind me-to where Etienne is standing-and gets a funny expression on hs face. His speech trails off,and he buries his nose in his sketchbook. I look back, but Etienne's own face has been wiped blank. We sit on the steps together. I haven't been this nervous around him since the first week of school. My mind is tangled, my tongue tied,my stomach in knots. "Well," he says, after an excruciating minute. "Did we use up all our conversation over the holiday?" The pressure inside me eases enough to speak. "Guess I'll go back to the dorm." I pretend to stand, and he laughs. "I have something for you." He pulls me back down by my sleeve. "A late Christmas present." "For me? But I didn't get you anything!" He reaches into a coat pocket and brings out his hand in a fist, closed around something very small. "It's not much,so don't get excited." "Ooo,what is it?" "I saw it when I was out with Mum, and it made me think of you-" "Etienne! Come on!" He blinks at hearing his first name. My face turns red, and I'm filled with the overwhelming sensation that he knows exactly what I'm thinking. His expression turns to amazement as he says, "Close your eyes and hold out your hand." Still blushing,I hold one out. His fingers brush against my palm, and my hand jerks back as if he were electrified. Something goes flying and lands with a faith dink behind us. I open my eyes. He's staring at me, equally stunned. "Whoops," I say. He tilts his head at me. "I think...I think it landed back here." I scramble to my feet, but I don't even know what I'm looking for. I never felt what he placed in my hands. I only felt him. "I don't see anything! Just pebbles and pigeon droppings," I add,trying to act normal. Where is it? What is it? "Here." He plucks something tiny and yellow from the steps above him. I fumble back and hold out my hand again, bracing myself for the contact. Etienne pauses and then drops it from a few inches above my hand.As if he's avoiding me,too. It's a glass bead.A banana. He clears his throat. "I know you said Bridgette was the only one who could call you "Banana," but Mum was feeling better last weekend,so I took her to her favorite bead shop. I saw that and thought of you.I hope you don't mind someone else adding to your collection. Especially since you and Bridgette...you know..." I close my hand around the bead. "Thank you." "Mum wondered why I wanted it." "What did you tell her?" "That it was for you,of course." He says this like, duh. I beam.The bead is so lightweight I hardly feel it, except for the teeny cold patch it leaves in my palm.
Stephanie Perkins (Anna and the French Kiss (Anna and the French Kiss, #1))