Hurston Quotes

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

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There are years that ask questions and years that answer.
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Zora Neale Hurston (Their Eyes Were Watching God)
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Love makes your soul crawl out from its hiding place.
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Zora Neale Hurston
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I love myself when I am laughing. . . and then again when I am looking mean and impressive.
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Zora Neale Hurston (I Love Myself When I Am Laughing And Then Again When I Am Looking Mean & Impressive)
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Love is lak de sea. It’s uh movin’ thing, but still and all, it takes its shape from de shore it meets, and it’s different with every shore.
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Zora Neale Hurston (Their Eyes Were Watching God)
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If you are silent about your pain, they’ll kill you and say you enjoyed it.
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Zora Neale Hurston
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Sometimes, I feel discriminated against, but it does not make me angry. It merely astonishes me. How can any deny themselves the pleasure of my company? It’s beyond me.
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Zora Neale Hurston
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If you kin see de light at daybreak, you don't keer if you die at dusk. It's so many people never seen de light at all.
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Zora Neale Hurston (Their Eyes Were Watching God)
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Some people could look at a mud puddle and see an ocean with ships.
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Zora Neale Hurston (Their Eyes Were Watching God)
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She had waited all her life for something, and it had killed her when it found her.
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Zora Neale Hurston (Their Eyes Were Watching God)
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Love is like the sea. It's a moving thing, but still and all, it takes its shape from the shore it meets, and it's different with every shore.
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Zora Neale Hurston (Their Eyes Were Watching God)
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I have known the joy and pain of friendship. I have served and been served. I have made some good enemies for which I am not a bit sorry. I have loved unselfishly, and I have fondled hatred with the red-hot tongs of Hell. That's living.
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Zora Neale Hurston
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Research is formalized curiosity. It is poking and prying with a purpose.
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Zora Neale Hurston
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Bitterness is the coward's revenge on the world for having been hurt.
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Zora Neale Hurston
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Two things everybody's got tuh do fuh theyselves. They got tuh go tuh God, and they got tuh find out about livin' fuh theyselves.
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Zora Neale Hurston (Their Eyes Were Watching God)
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No hour is ever eternity, but it has its right to weep.
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Zora Neale Hurston (Their Eyes Were Watching God)
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She didn't read books so she didn't know that she was the world and the heavens boiled down to a drop.
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Zora Neale Hurston (Their Eyes Were Watching God)
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Those that don't got it, can't show it. Those that got it, can't hide it.
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Zora Neale Hurston
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She stood there until something fell off the shelf inside her.
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Zora Neale Hurston (Their Eyes Were Watching God)
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There is a basin in the mind where words float around on thought and thought on sound and sight. Then there is a depth of thought untouched by words, and deeper still a gulf of formless feelings untouched by thought.
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Zora Neale Hurston (Their Eyes Were Watching God)
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All gods who receive homage are cruel. All gods dispense suffering without reason. Otherwise they would not be worshipped. Through indiscriminate suffering men know fear and fear is the most divine emotion. It is the stones for altars and the beginning of wisdom. Half gods are worshipped in wine and flowers. Real gods require blood.
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Zora Neale Hurston (Their Eyes Were Watching God)
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Ships at a distance have every man's wish on board. For some they come in with the tide. For others they sail forever on the same horizon, never out of sight, never landing until the Watcher turns his eyes away in resignation, his dreams mocked to death by Time. That is the life of men. Now, women forget all those things they don't want to remember, and remember everything they don't want to forget. The dream is the truth. Then they act and do things accordingly.
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Zora Neale Hurston (Their Eyes Were Watching God)
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She had an inside and an outside now and suddenly she knew how not to mix them.
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Zora Neale Hurston (Their Eyes Were Watching God)
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They seemed to be staring at the dark, but their eyes were watching God.
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Zora Neale Hurston (Their Eyes Were Watching God)
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Janie looked down on him and felt a self-crushing love. So her soul crawled out from its hiding place.
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Zora Neale Hurston (Their Eyes Were Watching God)
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I have the nerve to walk my own way, however hard, in my search for reality, rather than climb upon the rattling wagon of wishful illusions.
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Zora Neale Hurston
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A thing is mighty big when time and distance cannot shrink it.
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Zora Neale Hurston (Tell My Horse: Voodoo and Life in Haiti and Jamaica)
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So she sat on the porch and watched the moon rise. Soon its amber fluid was drenching the earth, and quenching the thirst of the day.
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Zora Neale Hurston (Their Eyes Were Watching God)
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I made up my mind to keep my feelings to myself since they did not seem to matter to anyone else but me.
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Zora Neale Hurston (Dust Tracks on a Road)
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Here was peace. She pulled in her horizon like a great fish-net. Pulled it from around the waist of the world and draped it over her shoulder. So much of life in its meshes! She called in her soul to come and see.
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Zora Neale Hurston (Their Eyes Were Watching God)
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When God had made The Man, he made him out of stuff that sung all the time and glittered all over. Some angels got jealous and chopped him into millions of pieces, but still he glittered and hummed. So they beat him down to nothing but sparks but each little spark had a shine and a song. So they covered each one over with mud. And the lonesomeness in the sparks make them hunt for one another.
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Zora Neale Hurston (Their Eyes Were Watching God)
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I have been in Sorrow's kitchen and licked out all the pots. Then I have stood on the peaky mountain wrapped in rainbows, with a harp and a sword in my hands.
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Zora Neale Hurston (Dust Tracks on a Road)
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Oh to be a pear tree – any tree in bloom! With kissing bees singing of the beginning of the world!
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Zora Neale Hurston (Their Eyes Were Watching God)
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...she starched and ironed her face, forming it into just what people wanted to see...
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Zora Neale Hurston (Their Eyes Were Watching God)
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It is so easy to be hopeful in the daytime when you can see the things you wish on. But it was night, it stayed night. Night was striding across nothingness with the whole round world in his hands . . . They sat in company with the others in other shanties, their eyes straining against cruel walls and their souls asking if He meant to measure their puny might against His. They seemed to be staring at the dark, but their eyes were watching God.
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Zora Neale Hurston (Their Eyes Were Watching God)
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It was the meanest moment of eternity.
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Zora Neale Hurston (Their Eyes Were Watching God)
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He looked like the love thoughts of women.
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Zora Neale Hurston (Their Eyes Were Watching God)
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Then you must tell 'em dat love ain't somethin' lak uh grindstone dat's de same thing everywhere and do de same thing tuh everything it touch. Love is lak de sea. It's uh movin' thing, but still and all, it takes its shape from de shore it meets, and it's different with every shore.
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Zora Neale Hurston (Their Eyes Were Watching God)
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It was not death she feared. It was misunderstanding.
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Zora Neale Hurston (Their Eyes Were Watching God)
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Her old thoughts were going to come in handy now, but new words would have to be made and said to fit them.
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Zora Neale Hurston (Their Eyes Were Watching God)
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There is no single face in nature, because every eye that looks upon it, sees it from its own angle. So every man's spice-box seasons his own food.
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Zora Neale Hurston
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An envious heart makes a treacherous ear.
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Zora Neale Hurston
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If you want that good feeling that comes from doing things for other folks then you have to pay for it in abuse and misunderstanding.
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Zora Neale Hurston
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Janie saw her life like a great tree in leaf with the things suffered, things enjoyed, things done and undone. Dawn and doom was in the branches
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Zora Neale Hurston (Their Eyes Were Watching God)
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Love, I find, is like singing.
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Zora Neale Hurston
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Mama exhorted her children at every opportunity to 'jump at the sun.' We might not land on the sun, but at least we would get off the ground.
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Zora Neale Hurston (Dust Tracks on a Road)
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Of course he wasn't dead. He could never be dead until she herself had finished feeling and thinking. The kiss of his memory made pictures of love and light against the wall. Here was peace. She pulled in her horizon like a great fish-net. Pulled it from around the waist of the world and draped it over her shoulder. So much of life in its meshes! She called in her soul to come and see.
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Zora Neale Hurston (Their Eyes Were Watching God)
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I am not tragically colored. There is no great sorrow dammed up in my soul, nor lurking behind my eyes. I do not mind at all. I do not belong to the sobbing school of Negrohood who hold that nature somehow has given them a lowdown dirty deal and whose feelings are all hurt about it. Even in the helter-skelter skirmish that is my life, I have seen that the world is to the strong regardless of a little pigmentation more or less. No, I do not weep at the worldβ€”I am too busy sharpening my oyster knife.
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Zora Neale Hurston (Dust Tracks on a Road)
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You'se something tuh make uh man forgit to git old and forgit tuh die.
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Zora Neale Hurston (Their Eyes Were Watching God)
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Nothing that God ever made is the same thing to more than one person.
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Zora Neale Hurston
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You heard me. You ain't blind.
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Zora Neale Hurston
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She was saving up feelings for some man she had never seen.
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Zora Neale Hurston (Their Eyes Were Watching God)
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Ships at a distance have every man's wish on board.
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Zora Neale Hurston (Their Eyes Were Watching God)
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Ships at a distance have every man's wish on board. For some they come in with the tide. For others they sail forever on the horizon, never out of sight, never landing until the Watcher turns his eyes away in resignation, his dreams mocked to death by Time.
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Zora Neale Hurston (Their Eyes Were Watching God)
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She knew now that marriage did not make love. Janie’s first dream was dead, so she became a woman.
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Zora Neale Hurston (Their Eyes Were Watching God)
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Grown people know that they do not always know the way of things, and even if they think they know, they do not know where and how they got the proof.
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Zora Neale Hurston (Dust Tracks on a Road)
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Please God, please suh, don't let him love nobody else but me. Maybe Ah'm is uh fool, Lawd, lak dey say, but Lawd, Ah been so lonesome, and Ah been waitin', Jesus. Ah done waited uh long time.
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Zora Neale Hurston (Their Eyes Were Watching God)
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She was stretched on her back beneath the pear tree soaking in the alto chant of the visiting bees, the gold of the sun and the panting breath of the breeze when the inaudible voice of it all came to her. She saw a dust-bearing bee sink into the sanctum of a bloom; the thousand sister-calyxes arch to meet the love embrace and the ecstatic shiver of the tree from root to tiniest branch creaming in every blossom and frothing with delight.
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Zora Neale Hurston (Their Eyes Were Watching God)
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There is nothing to make you like other human beings so much as doing things for them.
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Zora Neale Hurston
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Look lak she been livin' through uh hundred years in January without one day of spring.
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Zora Neale Hurston (Their Eyes Were Watching God)
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There is two things everybody got to find out for theirselves. They got to find out about love and they got to find out about living.
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Zora Neale Hurston (Their Eyes Were Watching God)
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She often spoke to falling seeds and said, "Ah hope you fall on soft ground," because she had heard seeds saying that to each other as they passed. The familiar people and things had failed her so she hung over the gate and looked up the road towards way off. She knew now that marriage did not make love. Janie's first dream was dead, so she became a woman.
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Zora Neale Hurston (Their Eyes Were Watching God)
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It seems to me that trying to live without friends is like milking a bear to get cream for your morning coffee. It is a whole lot of trouble, and then not worth much after you get it.
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Zora Neale Hurston
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She stood there until something fell off the shelf inside her. Then she went inside there to see what it was. It was her image of Jody tumbled down and shattered. But looking at it she saw that it never was the flesh and blood figure of her dreams. Just something she had grabbed up to drape her dreams over.
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Zora Neale Hurston (Their Eyes Were Watching God)
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And I can't die easy thinking maybe the menfolks white or black is making a spit cup out of you. Have some sympathy for me. Put me down easy, Janie, I'm a cracked plate.
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Zora Neale Hurston (Their Eyes Were Watching God)
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No, I do not weep at the world. I'm too busy sharpening my oyster knife.
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Zora Neale Hurston (Folklore, Memoirs, and Other Writings)
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I will fight for my country, but I will not lie for her.
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Zora Neale Hurston (Dust Tracks on a Road)
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..she began to stand around the gate and expect things. What things? She didn't know exactly. Her breath was gusty and short. She knew things that nobody ever told her. For instance, the words of the trees and the wind. .. She knew the world was a stallion rolling in the blue pasture of ether. She knew that God tore down the old world every evening and built a new one by sun-up. It was wonderful to see it take form with the sun and emerge from the gray dust of its making.
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Zora Neale Hurston (Their Eyes Were Watching God)
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Mystery is the essence of divinity
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Zora Neale Hurston (Dust Tracks on a Road)
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He was the average mortal. It troubled him to get used to the world one way and then suddenly have it turn different.
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Zora Neale Hurston (Their Eyes Were Watching God)
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My head was full of misty fumes of doubt.
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Zora Neale Hurston (Dust Tracks on a Road)
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In the cool afternoon the fiend from hell specifically sent to lovers arrived at Janie's ear. Doubt.
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Zora Neale Hurston (Their Eyes Were Watching God)
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The sun had become a light yellow yolk and was walking with red legs across the sky.
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Zora Neale Hurston (Seraph on the Suwanee)
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anytime you catch folks lying, they scared of something!
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Zora Neale Hurston (Folklore, Memoirs, and Other Writings)
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The morning air was like a new dress. That made her feel the apron tied around her waist. She untied it and flung it on a low bush beside the road and walked on, picking flowers and making a bouquet… From now on until death she was going to have flower dust and springtime sprinkled over everything.
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Zora Neale Hurston (Their Eyes Were Watching God)
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People can be slave ships in shoes.
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Zora Neale Hurston (Dust Tracks on a Road)
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My sense of humor will always stand in the way of my seeing myself, my family, my race or my nation as the whole intent of the universe.
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Zora Neale Hurston (Dust Tracks on a Road)
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Half Gods are worshipped with wine and Flowers. Real Gods require Blood.
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Zora Neale Hurston (Their Eyes Were Watching God)
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She wanted to struggle with life but it seemed to elude her.
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Zora Neale Hurston (Their Eyes Were Watching God)
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But as de old folks always say, Ah'm born but Ah ain't dead. No tellin' whut Ah'm liable tuh do yet.
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Zora Neale Hurston (Their Eyes Were Watching God)
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An envious heart makes a treacherous ear. They done 'heard' bout you just what they hope done happened.
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Zora Neale Hurston (Their Eyes Were Watching God)
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I feel most colored when I am thrown against a sharp white background........Beside the waters of the Hudson" I feel my race. Among the thousand white persons, I am a dark rock surged upon, and overswept, but through it all, I remain myself. When covered by the waters, I am; and the ebb but reveals me again." How It Feels to Be Colored Me
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Zora Neale Hurston
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The spirit of the marriage left the bedroom and took to living in the parlor.
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Zora Neale Hurston (Their Eyes Were Watching God)
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Honey, de white man is de ruler of everything as fur as Ah been able tuh find out. Maybe it's some place way off in de ocean where de black man is in power, but we don't know nothin' but what we see.
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Zora Neale Hurston (Their Eyes Were Watching God)
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I don't know any more about the future than you do. I hope that it will be full of work, because I have come to know by experience that work is the nearest thing to happiness that I can find. . . I want a busy life, a just mind and a timely death.
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Zora Neale Hurston (Dust Tracks on a Road)
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The present was an egg laid by the past that had the future inside its shell.
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Zora Neale Hurston
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They bowed down to him rather, because he was all of these things, and then again he was all of these things because the town bowed down.
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Zora Neale Hurston (Their Eyes Were Watching God)
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Night came walking through Egypt swishing her black dress.
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Zora Neale Hurston (Moses, Man of the Mountain)
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She was too busy feeling grief to dress like grief.
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Zora Neale Hurston (Their Eyes Were Watching God)
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Pheoby, yuh got tuh go there tuh know there. Yo' papa and yo' mama and nobody else can't tell yuh and show yuh. Two things everybody's got tuh do fuh theyselves. They got tuh go tuh God and they got tuh find out about livin fuh theyselves.
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Zora Neale Hurston (Their Eyes Were Watching God)
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I had hundreds of books under my skin already. Not selected reading, all of it. Some of it could be called trashy. I had been through Nick Carter, Horatio Alger, Bertha M. Clay and the whole slew of dime novelists in addition to some really constructive reading. I do not regret the trash. It has harmed me in no way. It was a help, because acquiring the reading habit early is the important thing. Taste and natural development will take care of the rest later on.
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Zora Neale Hurston (Dust Tracks on a Road)
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She couldn’t make him look just like any other man to her. He looked like the love thoughts of women. He could be a bee to a blossom – a pear tree blossom in the spring. He seemed to be crushing scent out of the world with his footsteps. Crushing aromatic herbs with every step he took. Spices hung above him. He was a glance from God.
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Zora Neale Hurston (Their Eyes Were Watching God)
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The wind came back with triple fury, and put out the light for the last time. They sat in company with the others in other shanties, their eyes straining against crude walls and their souls asking if He meant to measure their puny might against His. They seemed to be staring at the dark, but their eyes were watching God.
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Zora Neale Hurston (Their Eyes Were Watching God)
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From barren brown stems to glistening leaf-buds; from the leaf-buds to snowy virginity of bloom…It was like a flute song forgotten in another existence and remembered again. What? How? Why? This singing she heard that had nothing to do with her ears. The rose of the world was breathing out smell. It followed her through all her waking moments and caressed her in her sleep.
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Zora Neale Hurston (Their Eyes Were Watching God)
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Why fear? The stuff of my being is matter, ever changing, ever moving, but never lost; so what need of denominations and creeds to deny myself the comfort of all my fellow men? The wide belt of the universe has no need for finger-rings. I am one with the infinite and need no other assurance.
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Zora Neale Hurston (Dust Tracks on a Road)
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Make the attempt if you want to, but you will find that trying to go through life without friendship, is like milking a bear to get cream for your morning coffee. It is a whole lot of trouble, and then not worth much after you get it.
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Zora Neale Hurston (Dust Tracks on a Road)
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Perhaps it is just as well to be rash and foolish for a while. If writers were too wise, perhaps no books would get written at all. It might be better to ask yourself 'Why?' afterward than before. Anyway, the force of somewhere in space which commands you to write in the first place, gives you no choice. You take up the pen when you are told, and write what is commanded. There is no agony like bearing an untold story inside you.
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Zora Neale Hurston (Dust Tracks on a Road)
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She had found a jewel down inside herself and she had wanted to walk where people could see her and gleam it around. But she had been set in the market-place to sell. Been set for still bait. When God had made The Man, he made him out of stuff that sung all the time and glittered all over. Then after that some angels got jealous and chopped him into millions of pieces, but still he glittered and hummed. So they beat him down to nothing but sparks but each little spark had a shine and a song. So they covered each one over with mud. And the lonesomeness in the sparks made them hunt for one another, but the mud is deaf and dumb. Like all the other tumbling mud-balls, Janie had tried to show her shine.
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Zora Neale Hurston
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So Janie waited a bloom time, and a green time and an orange time. But when the pollen again gilded the sun and sifted down on the world she began to stand around the gate and expect things. What things? She didn't know exactly. Her breath was gusty and short. She knew things that nobody had ever told her. For instance, the words of the trees and the wind. She often spoke to falling seeds and said, 'Ah hope you fall on soft ground,' because she had heard seeds saying that to each other as they passed. She knew the world was a stallion rolling in the blue pasture of ether. She knew that God tore down the old world every evening and built a new one by sun-up. It was wonderful to see it take form with the sun and emerge from the gray dust of its making. The familiar people and things had failed her so she hung over the gate and looked up the road towards way off. She knew now that marriage did not make love. Janie's first dream was dead, so she became a woman.
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Zora Neale Hurston (Their Eyes Were Watching God)
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She stood there until something fell off the shelf inside her. Then she went inside there to see what it was. It was her image of Jody tumbled down and shattered. But looking at it she saw that it never was the flesh and blood figure of her dreams. Just something she grabbed up to drape her dreams over. In a way she turned her back upon the image where it lay and looked further. She had no more blossomy openings dusting pollen over her man, neither any glistening young fruit where the petals used to be. She found that she had a host of thoughts she had never expressed to him, and numerous emotions she had never let Jody know about. Things packed up and put away in parts of her heart where he could never find them. She was saving up feelings for some man she had never seen. She had an inside and an outside now and suddenly she knew how not to mix them.
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Zora Neale Hurston (Their Eyes Were Watching God)
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So Janie began to think of Death. Death, that strange being with the huge square toes who lived way in the West. The great one who lived in the straight house like a platform without sides to it, and without a roof. What need has Death for a cover, and what winds can blow against him? He stands in his high house that overlooks the world. Stands watchful and motionless all day with his sword drawn back, waiting for the messenger to bid him come. Been standing there before there was a where or a when or a then. She was liable to find a feather from his wings lying in her yard any day now. She was sad and afraid too. Poor Jody! He ought not to have to wrassle in there by himself. She sent Sam in to suggest a visit, but Jody said No. These medical doctors wuz all right with the Godly sick, but they didn't know a thing about a case like his. He'd be all right just as soon as the two-headed man found what had been buried against him. He wasn't going to die at all. That was what he thought. But Sam told her different, so she knew. And then if he hadn't the next morning she was bound to know, for people began to gather in the big yard under the palm and china-berry trees. People who would not have dared to foot the place before crept in and did not come to the house. Just squatted under the trees and waited. Rumor, that wingless bird, had shadowed over the town.
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Zora Neale Hurston (Their Eyes Were Watching God)