I Slept On Myself Quotes

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I thought about the days i had handed over to a bottle..the nights i can't remember..the mornings i slept thru..all the time spent running from myself.
Mitch Albom (For One More Day)
For some nights I slept profoundly; but still every morning I felt the same lassitude, and a languor weighed upon me all day. I felt myself a changed girl. A strange melancholy was stealing over me, a melancholy that I would not have interrupted. Dim thoughts of death began to open, and an idea that I was slowly sinking took gentle, and, somehow, not unwelcome possession of me. If it was sad, the tone of mind which this induced was also sweet. Whatever it might be, my soul acquiesced in it.
J. Sheridan Le Fanu (Carmilla)
I hurt myself,” Syren bit out. “I make myself bleed and it feels good. It eases the pressure inside me, but it never lasts for long.” His lips trembled. “Before I slept in your bed, I’d never had a full night’s sleep. Before I crawled into your arms I’d never been safe.” He shuffled forward. “You give me that. You hold that power and you can take it away.
Avril Ashton (A Sinner Born (Brooklyn Sinners, #3))
No, I slept as I always do when I am bored and have not the courage to amuse myself, or when I am hungry and have not the desire to eat.--The Count of Monte Cristo
Alexandre Dumas
It was a time I slept in many rooms, called myself by many names. I wandered through the quarters of the city like alluvium wanders the river banks. I knew every kind of joy, ascents of every hue. Mine was the twilight and the morning. Mine was a world of rooftops and love songs.
Roman Payne (Rooftop Soliloquy)
I could give all to Time except -- except What I myself have held. But why declare The things forbidden that while the Customs slept I have crossed to Safety with? For I am There, And what I would not part with I have kept.
Robert Frost (The Poetry of Robert Frost)
For Jenn At 12 years old I started bleeding with the moon and beating up boys who dreamed of becoming astronauts. I fought with my knuckles white as stars, and left bruises the shape of Salem. There are things we know by heart, and things we don't. At 13 my friend Jen tried to teach me how to blow rings of smoke. I'd watch the nicotine rising from her lips like halos, but I could never make dying beautiful. The sky didn't fill with colors the night I convinced myself veins are kite strings you can only cut free. I suppose I love this life, in spite of my clenched fist. I open my palm and my lifelines look like branches from an Aspen tree, and there are songbirds perched on the tips of my fingers, and I wonder if Beethoven held his breath the first time his fingers touched the keys the same way a soldier holds his breath the first time his finger clicks the trigger. We all have different reasons for forgetting to breathe. But my lungs remember the day my mother took my hand and placed it on her belly and told me the symphony beneath was my baby sister's heartbeat. And I knew life would tremble like the first tear on a prison guard's hardened cheek, like a prayer on a dying man's lips, like a vet holding a full bottle of whisky like an empty gun in a war zone… just take me just take me Sometimes the scales themselves weigh far too much, the heaviness of forever balancing blue sky with red blood. We were all born on days when too many people died in terrible ways, but you still have to call it a birthday. You still have to fall for the prettiest girl on the playground at recess and hope she knows you can hit a baseball further than any boy in the whole third grade and I've been running for home through the windpipe of a man who sings while his hands playing washboard with a spoon on a street corner in New Orleans where every boarded up window is still painted with the words We're Coming Back like a promise to the ocean that we will always keep moving towards the music, the way Basquait slept in a cardboard box to be closer to the rain. Beauty, catch me on your tongue. Thunder, clap us open. The pupils in our eyes were not born to hide beneath their desks. Tonight lay us down to rest in the Arizona desert, then wake us washing the feet of pregnant women who climbed across the border with their bellies aimed towards the sun. I know a thousand things louder than a soldier's gun. I know the heartbeat of his mother. Don't cover your ears, Love. Don't cover your ears, Life. There is a boy writing poems in Central Park and as he writes he moves and his bones become the bars of Mandela's jail cell stretching apart, and there are men playing chess in the December cold who can't tell if the breath rising from the board is their opponents or their own, and there's a woman on the stairwell of the subway swearing she can hear Niagara Falls from her rooftop in Brooklyn, and I'm remembering how Niagara Falls is a city overrun with strip malls and traffic and vendors and one incredibly brave river that makes it all worth it. Ya'll, I know this world is far from perfect. I am not the type to mistake a streetlight for the moon. I know our wounds are deep as the Atlantic. But every ocean has a shoreline and every shoreline has a tide that is constantly returning to wake the songbirds in our hands, to wake the music in our bones, to place one fearless kiss on the mouth of that brave river that has to run through the center of our hearts to find its way home.
Andrea Gibson
A kind of second childhood falls on so many men. They trade their violence for the promise of a small increase of life span. In effect, the head of the house becomes the youngest child. And I have searched myself for this possibility with a kind of horror. For I have always lived violently, drunk hugely, eaten too much or not at all, slept around the clock or missed two nights of sleeping, worked too hard and too long in glory, or slobbed for a time in utter laziness. I've lifted, pulled, chopped, climbed, made love with joy and taken my hangovers as a consequence, not as a punishment. I did not want to surrender fierceness for a small gain in yardage. My wife married a man; I saw no reason why she should inherit a baby.
John Steinbeck (Travels with Charley: In Search of America)
Behold the day-break! I awaken you by sitting on your chest and purring in your face, I stir you with muscular paw-prods, I rouse you with toe-bites, Walt, you have slept enough, why don't you get up?" (From Meow of Myself, from LEAVES OF CATNIP)
Henry N. Beard (Poetry for Cats: The Definitive Anthology of Distinguished Feline Verse)
One day or one night—between my days and nights, what difference can there be?—I dreamed that there was a grain of sand on the floor of my cell. Unconcerned, I went back to sleep; I dreamed that I woke up and there were two grains of sand. Again I slept; I dreamed that now there were three. Thus the grains of sand multiplied, little by little, until they filled the cell and I was dying beneath that hemisphere of sand. I realized that I was dreaming; with a vast effort I woke myself. But waking up was useless—I was suffocated by the countless sand. Someone said to me: You have wakened not out of sleep, but into a prior dream, and that dream lies within another, and so on, to infinity, which is the number of the grains of sand. The path that you are to take is endless, and you will die before you have truly awakened. I felt lost. The sand crushed my mouth, but I cried out: I cannot be killed by sand that I dream —nor is there any such thing as a dream within a dream. — Jorge Luis Borges, The Writing of the God
Jorge Luis Borges (The Aleph and Other Stories)
I went into the crapper and took myself a beautiful beershit. Then I went to bed, jacked off, and slept.
Charles Bukowski (The Most Beautiful Woman in Town)
I have murdered the lovely and the helpless; I have strangled the innocent as they slept, and grasped to death his throat who never injured me or any other living thing. I have devoted my creator, the select specimen of all that is worthy of love and admiration among men, to misery; I have pursued him even to that irremediable ruin. There he lies, white and cold in death. You hate me; but your abhorrence cannot equal that with which I regard myself. I look on the hands which executed the deed; I think on the heart in which the imagination of it was conceived, and long for the moment when these hands will meet my eyes, when that imagination will haunt my thoughts no more.
Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley (Frankenstein)
I willed myself to stay awake, but the rain was so soft and the room was so warm and his voice was so deep and his knee was so snug that I slept.
Harper Lee (To Kill a Mockingbird)
I slept so long and hard that when my mother woke me the next morning I was a stranger to myself.
Lauren Wolk (Wolf Hollow (Wolf Hollow #1))
Marcus Flutie slept with just about every girl on the Eastern Seaboard except me. Though, he tried to get into my panties when I was a freshman but turned him down because I refuse to disempower myself just for a few clit twitches.
Megan McCafferty (Perfect Fifths (Jessica Darling, #5))
From time to time I meet people who live among riches I cannot even imagine. I still have to make an effort to realize that others can feel envious of such wealth. A long time ago, I once lived a whole week luxuriating in all the goods of this world: we slept without a roof, on a beach, I lived on fruit, and spent half my days alone in the water. I learned something then that has always made me react to the signs of comfort or of a well-appointed house with irony, impatience, and sometimes anger. Although I live without worrying about tomorrow now, and therefore count myself among the privileged, I don't know how to own things. What I do have, which always comes to me without my asking for it, I can't seem to keep. Less from extravagance, I think, than from another kind of parsimony: I cling like a miser to the freedom that disappears as soon as there is an excess of things.
Albert Camus (Lyrical and Critical Essays)
The next day, I am almost afraid. Love? It was more like dragonflies in the sun, 100 degrees at noon, the ends of their abdomens stuck together. I close my eyes when I remember. I hardly knew myself, like something twisting and twisting out of a chrysalis, enormous, without language, all head, all shut eyes, and the humming like madness, the way they writhe away, and do not leave, back, back, away, back. Did I know you? No kiss, no tenderness—more like killing, death-grip holding to life, genitals like violent hands clasped tight barely moving, more like being closed in a great jaw and eaten, and the screaming. I groan to remember it, and when we started to die, then I refuse to remember, the way a drunkard forgets. After, you held my hands extremely hard as my body moved in shudders like the ferry when its axle is loosed past engagement, you kept me sealed exactly against you, our hairlines wet as the arc of a gateway after a cloudburst, you secured me in your arms till I slept - clasped, fragrant, buoyant, that was the morning after love.
Sharon Olds
The year is done. I spread the past three hundred sixty-five days before me on the living room carpet. Here is the month I decided to shed everything not deeply committed to my dreams. The day I refused to be a victim to the self-pity. Here is the week I slept in the garden. The spring I wrung the self-doubt by its neck. Hung your kindness up. Took down the calendar. The week I danced so hard my heart learned to float above water again. The summer I unscrewed all the mirrors from their walls. No longer needed to see myself to feel seen. Combed the weight out of my hair. I fold the good days up and place them in my back pocket for safekeeping. Draw the match. Cremate the unnecessary. The light of the fire warms my toes. I pour myself a glass of warm water to cleanse myself for january. Here I go. Stronger and wiser into the new.
Rupi Kaur (the sun and her flowers)
As I stepped out to face myself in the mirror, reaching a hand to smooth away the steam, I saw myself differently. It was as if I had grown again as I slept, but this time just to fit my own size. As if my soul had expanded, filling out the gaps of the height that had burdened me all these months. Like a balloon filling slowly with air, becoming all smooth and buoyant, I felt like I finally fit within myself, edge to edge, every crevice filled.
Sarah Dessen (That Summer)
It still amazed me sometimes when I caught sight of myself in a mirror. I would be startled to see the stranger there, as if still expecting to see my blond hair and tight skin, my hands with long, straight fingers. Age was a thief, an insidious one who instead of robbing you at night while you slept took all of your possessions one by one and forced you to watch.
Karen White (The Time Between)
EDMUND *Then with alcoholic talkativeness You've just told me some high spots in your memories. Want to hear mine? They're all connected with the sea. Here's one. When I was on the Squarehead square rigger, bound for Buenos Aires. Full moon in the Trades. The old hooker driving fourteen knots. I lay on the bowsprit, facing astern, with the water foaming into spume under me, the masts with every sail white in the moonlight, towering high above me. I became drunk with the beauty and signing rhythm of it, and for a moment I lost myself -- actually lost my life. I was set free! I dissolved in the sea, became white sails and flying spray, became beauty and rhythm, became moonlight and the ship and the high dim-starred sky! I belonged, without past or future, within peace and unity and a wild joy, within something greater than my own life, or the life of Man, to Life itself! To God, if you want to put it that way. Then another time, on the American Line, when I was lookout on the crow's nest in the dawn watch. A calm sea, that time. Only a lazy ground swell and a slow drowsy roll of the ship. The passengers asleep and none of the crew in sight. No sound of man. Black smoke pouring from the funnels behind and beneath me. Dreaming, not keeping looking, feeling alone, and above, and apart, watching the dawn creep like a painted dream over the sky and sea which slept together. Then the moment of ecstatic freedom came. the peace, the end of the quest, the last harbor, the joy of belonging to a fulfillment beyond men's lousy, pitiful, greedy fears and hopes and dreams! And several other times in my life, when I was swimming far out, or lying alone on a beach, I have had the same experience. Became the sun, the hot sand, green seaweed anchored to a rock, swaying in the tide. Like a saint's vision of beatitude. Like a veil of things as they seem drawn back by an unseen hand. For a second you see -- and seeing the secret, are the secret. For a second there is meaning! Then the hand lets the veil fall and you are alone, lost in the fog again, and you stumble on toward nowhere, for no good reason! *He grins wryly. It was a great mistake, my being born a man, I would have been much more successful as a sea gull or a fish. As it is, I will always be a stranger who never feels at home, who does not really want and is not really wanted, who can never belong, who must always be a a little in love with death! TYRONE *Stares at him -- impressed. Yes, there's the makings of a poet in you all right. *Then protesting uneasily. But that's morbid craziness about not being wanted and loving death. EDMUND *Sardonically The *makings of a poet. No, I'm afraid I'm like the guy who is always panhandling for a smoke. He hasn't even got the makings. He's got only the habit. I couldn't touch what I tried to tell you just now. I just stammered. That's the best I'll ever do, I mean, if I live. Well, it will be faithful realism, at least. Stammering is the native eloquence of us fog people.
Eugene O'Neill (Long Day's Journey into Night)
I asked Dr. Seward to give me a little opiate of some kind, as I had not slept well the night before......I hope I have not done wrong, for as sleep begins to flirt with me, a new fear comes: that I may have been foolish in thus depriving myself of the power of waking. I might want it. Here comes sleep. Goodnight.
Bram Stoker (Dracula)
I woke up this morning for three minutes. I rolled out of bed, put on my slippers, and stared at myself in the bathroom mirror. That was all I could take. I went back to sleep. I didn’t go back to bed. I just went back to sleep. I slept all day. I sleep most days. I’m asleep when I go to school, asleep when I’m telling the barista which form of caffeine I prefer. It never wakes me up, but I spend $3.50 on it anyway. I’m asleep when my professors are talking, asleep when I go to the store to pick up milk. Sometimes I wake up, but it’s terrifying so I go back to sleep right away. I want to wake up. I want to have a reason to wake up. I brush my teeth every night before bed and wonder how many times I will brush my teeth before they are clean enough to never brush again. I eat lunch and wonder how much more I will have to eat until I’m full enough to never eat again. It’s easy to sleep through routine; I guess that’s why I stay here. I wish I could be done with this life so I could finally sleep properly.
marianna paige
I don't know how it is to fuck him Shane, I did not fuck Ethan. I have never slept with anyone, actually. I was saving myself for that ex-boyfriend... he was in...um...jail, but when he got out, he didn't want me anymore and left.
Christine Zolendz (Saving Grace (Mad World, #2))
Michael turned from the counter with a cup of coffee in hand. "Don't start," he said to Gabriel."I didn't say anything. I'm just glad you weren't jerking her around." Gabriel paused. "So I guess you don't have too much baggage after all?" Michael gave him a look. "Trust me I do." He sat down at the table. "She just has enough to mach." "What does that mean?" "It means she has a five-year-old son." Gabriel went still. "Holy crap." "So we're taking things really slowly." "Looks like it." This was quite possibly the first time Gabriel had ever seen his older brother blush. "It was late. She slept here. We did not-" Michael broke off. "I don't really think I need to explain myself to you." Gabriel smiled and took a sip of coffee. "No, no, I'm enjoying this.
Brigid Kemmerer (Spark (Elemental, #2))
There was a darkness under her eyes and I wondered if she’d slept at all since I’d taken Brianna. And then I corrected myself, because I’d not taken Brianna. I’d saved her.
Melissa Wright (Bound by Prophecy (Descendants #1))
I think it's a little presumptuous on his part to think that I would want to talk to him anyway. I mean, sure, I went home with him, probably slept with him, ate breakfast with him, and wore his clothes to work the next day. None of this I see as necessarily flirtatious on my part.
Josh Kilmer-Purcell (I Am Not Myself These Days)
My name is not Tobias. I use that name only when I want someone to remember me. In this case, the bartender. I introduced myself and typed out my name when I first walked in and ordered a drink. He will remember me. He will remember that Tobias is the deaf man who left the bar with a woman he just met. The name was for his benefit, not Petra’s. She will remember me anyway, because how many deaf guys could she have slept with?
Samantha Downing (My Lovely Wife)
I felt like I was living at the bottom of a deep well completely shut up inside myself, cursing my fate, hating everything outside. Occasionally I ventured outside myself, putting on a good show of being alive. Accepting whatever came along, numbly slipping through life. I slept around a lot, at one point even living in a sort of marriage, but it was all pointless. Everything passed away in an instant, with nothing left behind except the scars of things I injured and despised.
Haruki Murakami (Kafka on the Shore)
Dear daughter, I won't try to call my feeling for Arty love. Call it focus. My focus on Art was an ailment, noncommunicable, and, even to me all these years later, incomprehensible. Now I despise myself. But even so I remember, in hot floods, the way he slept, still as death, with his face washed flat, stony as a carved tomb and exquisite. His weakness and his ravening bitter needs were terrible, and beautiful, and irresistible as an earthquake. He scalded or smothered anyone he needed, but his needing and the hurt that it caused me were the most life I ever had. Remember what a poor thing I have always been and forgive me. He saw no use for you and you interfered with his use of me. I sent you away to please him, to prove my dedication to him, and to prevent him from killing you... My job was to come back [from the convent] directly, with nothing leaking from beneath my dark glasses, to give Arty his rubdown and then paint him for the next show, nodding cheerfully all the while, never showing anything but attentive care for his muscular wonderfulness. Because he could have killed you. He could have cut off the money that schooled and fed you. He could have erased you so entirely that I never would have had those letters and report cards and photos, or your crayon pictures, or the chance to spy on you, and to love you secretly when everything else was gone.
Katherine Dunn (Geek Love)
Love Letter" Not easy to state the change you made. If I'm alive now, then I was dead, Though, like a stone, unbothered by it, Staying put according to habit. You didn't just tow me an inch, no- Nor leave me to set my small bald eye Skyward again, without hope, of course, Of apprehending blueness, or stars. That wasn't it. I slept, say: a snake Masked among black rocks as a black rock In the white hiatus of winter- Like my neighbors, taking no pleasure In the million perfectly-chisled Cheeks alighting each moment to melt My cheeks of basalt. They turned to tears, Angels weeping over dull natures, But didn't convince me. Those tears froze. Each dead head had a visor of ice. And I slept on like a bent finger. The first thing I was was sheer air And the locked drops rising in dew Limpid as spirits. Many stones lay Dense and expressionless round about. I didn't know what to make of it. I shone, mice-scaled, and unfolded To pour myself out like a fluid Among bird feet and the stems of plants. I wasn't fooled. I knew you at once. Tree and stone glittered, without shadows. My finger-length grew lucent as glass. I started to bud like a March twig: An arm and a leg, and arm, a leg. From stone to cloud, so I ascended. Now I resemble a sort of god Floating through the air in my soul-shift Pure as a pane of ice. It's a gift.
Sylvia Plath (Crossing the Water)
I remember how I would eye with envy all the kids in our neighborhood, in my school, who had a little brother or sister. How bewildered I was by the way some of them treated each other, oblivious to their own good luck. They acted like wild dogs. Pinching, hitting, pushing, betraying one another any way they could think of. Laughing about it too. They wouldn’t speak to one another. I didn’t understand. Me, I spent most of my early years craving a sibling. What I really wished I had was a twin, someone who’d cried next to me in the crib, slept beside me, fed from Mother’s breast with me. Someone to love helplessly and totally, and in whose face I could always find myself.
Khaled Hosseini (And the Mountains Echoed)
I trained. I punished myself. I thought making myself suffer on a day-to-day basis would prepare me for climbing hard at high altitude. I slept on the floor. I carried ice in my bare hands. I beat them against the concrete just to see if I could handle it. I never missed an opportunity to train. I ran stairs until I vomited, then ran more. I ruined relationships to get used to the feeling of failure and sacrifice (it was much easier than holding on). I trained in the gym on an empty diet to learn how far I could push myself without food or water. I imitated and plagiarized the heroes who lived and died before me. I spoke only strong words and ignored weakness at every turn. I subdued my fears. I was opinionated and direct. I became a man either well loved or truly hated. I was ready for anything.
Mark Twight (Kiss or Kill: Confessions of a Serial Climber)
I slept again but only for a few minutes. Then I fell into a torpor crowded with images, in which, without wanting to, I began to tell myself about my mother.
Elena Ferrante (Troubling Love)
I’ve slept in your sheets and seen my sweat cooling on your gorgeous skin. I’ve spent myself in your mouth and between your legs.
Tessa Bailey (Off Base)
And if I went back to sleep and slept for forty years and woke up without any teeth to the sound of Melody Radio in an old people’s home, I wouldn’t worry that much, because the worst of life, i.e., the rest of it, would be over. And I wouldn’t even have had to kill myself.
Nick Hornby (High Fidelity)
I performed the part of an odd, quiet woman, and performed it to everyone's satisfaction. When others slept, I was awake; when they woke, they found me quietly occupied. I took walks by myself. I read and sewed or sat in the garden with my own self for company. I was not missed. I have never been missed. I had all the manners and necessities of other women of my society, yet I was without society. ... I simply surrendered to that brute unhappiness which had always been close at hand. I no longer made the effort to appear civil, for by then I loathed civilisation from the bottom of my heart. Solitude, after a while, becomes the worst kind of savagery.
Margaret Cezair-Thompson (The True History of Paradise)
For some reason all activity, all happiness on the part of other people made me feel like vomiting. I was aware that my own life was finished and was slowly and painfully guttering out. What earthly reason had I to concern myself with the lives of the fools, the rabble-people who were fit and healthy, ate well, slept well, and copulated well and who had never experienced a particle of my sufferings or felt the wings of death every minute brushing against their faces?
Sadegh Hedayat (The Blind Owl)
During the night, I have one of those dreams that aren’t really dreams at all, just stuff about Laura fucking Ray, and Marco fucking Charlie, and I’m pleased to wake up in the middle of the night, because it means stopping the dream. But the pleasure only lasts a few seconds and then everything sinks in: that somewhere Laura really is fucking Ray (maybe not exactly now, because it’s 3:56 a.m., although with his stamina – his inability to climax, ha ha – you never know), and I’m here, in this stupid little flat, on my own, and I’m thirty-five years old, and I own a tiny failing business, and my friends don’t seem to be friends at all but people whose phone numbers I haven’t lost And if I went back to sleep and slept for forty years and woke up without any teeth to the sound of Melody Radio in an old people’s home, I wouldn’t worry that much, because the worst of life, i.e. the rest of it, would be over. And I wouldn’t even have had to kill myself.
Nick Hornby (High Fidelity)
This is the list you carry in your pocket, of the things you plan to say to Kay, when you find him, if you find him: 1. I’m sorry that I forgot to water your ferns while you were away that time. 2. When you said that I reminded you of your mother, was that a good thing? 3. I never really liked your friends all that much. 4. None of my friends ever really liked you. 5. Do you remember when the cat ran away, and I cried and cried and made you put up posters, and she never came back? I wasn’t crying because she didn’t come back. I was crying because I’d taken her to the woods, and I was scared she’d come back and tell you what I’d done, but I guess a wolf got her, or something. She never liked me anyway. 6. I never liked your mother. 7. After you left, I didn’t water your plants on purpose. They’re all dead. 8. Goodbye. 9. Were you ever really in love with me? 10. Was I good in bed, or just average? 11. What exactly did you mean, when you said that it was fine that I had put on a little weight, that you thought I was even more beautiful, that I should go ahead and eat as much as I wanted, but when I weighed myself on the bathroom scale, I was exactly the same weight as before, I hadn’t gained a single pound? 12. So all those times, I’m being honest here, every single time, and anyway I don’t care if you don’t believe me, I faked every orgasm you ever thought I had. Women can do that, you know. You never made me come, not even once. 13. So maybe I’m an idiot, but I used to be in love with you. 14. I slept with some guy, I didn’t mean to, it just kind of happened. Is that how it was with you? Not that I’m making any apologies, or that I’d accept yours, I just want to know. 15. My feet hurt, and it’s all your fault. 16. I mean it this time, goodbye.
Kelly Link (Stranger Things Happen)
I slept in myself, didn’t get up until about nine.” “Has anyone looked outside, checked to see if the world is still spinning on its axis?” “At which time,” he continued dryly, “I had a workout—I had soufflé, too. Then, before I came down here to enjoy one of my gifts, I worked about an hour in my office.
J.D. Robb (Memory in Death (In Death, #22))
Every single iceberg filled me with feelings of sadness and wonder. Not thoughts of sadness and wonder, mind you, because thoughts require a thinker, and my head was a balloon, incapable of thoughts. I didn't think about Dad, I didn't think about you, and, the big one, I didn't think about myself. The effect was like heroin (I think), and I wanted to stretch it out as long as possible. Even the simplest human interaction would send me crashing back to earthly thoughts. So I was the first one out in the morning, and the last one back. I only went kayaking, never stepped foot on the White Continent proper. I kept my head down, stayed in my room, and slept, but, mainly, I was. No racing heart, no flying thoughts.
Maria Semple (Where'd You Go, Bernadette)
Though there was nothing very airy about Miss Murdstone, she was a perfect Lark in point of getting up. She was up (and, as I believe to this hour, looking for that man) before anybody in the house was stirring. Peggotty gave it as her opinion that she even slept with one eye open; but I could not concur in this idea; for I tried it myself after hearing the suggestion thrown out, and found it couldn’t be done.
Charles Dickens (David Copperfield)
What I really wished I had was a twin, someone who'd cried next to me in the crib, slept beside me, fed from Mother's breast with me. Someone to love helplessly and totally, and in whose face I could always find myself.
Khaled Hosseini
I missed my one true friend, my mother. She and I were close in a way I don't think many other mothers and daughters were. I slept beside her every night of my childhood: so near to her back, I could probably sketch the constellation of moles and freckles on her skin there. When I was a very little girl, every morning I would wake before her and arrange myself so that when she woke, we were eye-to-eye. I miss her, with a never-ending ache that I did not think was possible, that crowds out any other feeling and certainly all reason, and any good sense.
Kaitlyn Greenidge (We Love You, Charlie Freeman)
From the time I woke up in the morning until the time I went to bed at night, I was unbearably miserable and seemingly incapable of any kind of joy or enthusiasm. Everything--every thought, word, movement--was an effort. Everything that once was sparkling now was flat. I seemed to myself to be dull, boring, inadequate, thick brained, unlit, unresponsive, chill skinned, bloodless, and sparrow drab. I doubted, completely, my ability to do anything well..... And always, everything was an effort. Washing my hair took hours to do, and it drained me for hours afterward; filling the ice-cute tray was beyond my capacity, and I occasionally slept in the same clothes I had worn during the day because I was too exhausted to undress.
Kay Redfield Jamison (An Unquiet Mind: A Memoir of Moods and Madness)
We drove down Corydon avenue towards my mother's apartment. How are you doing, she asked me? Fine, fine, I said. I wanted to tell her that I felt I was dying from rage and that I felt guilty about everything and that when I was a kid I woke up every morning singing, that I couldn't wait to leap out of bed and rush out of the house into the magical kingdom that was my world, that dust made visible in sunbeams gave me real authentic joy, that my sparkly golden banana-seated bike with the very high sissy bar took my breath away, the majesty of it, that it was mine, that there was no freer soul in the world than me at age nine, and that now I wake up every morning reminding myself that control is an illusion, taking deep breaths and counting to ten trying to ward off panic attacks and hoping that my own hands hadn't managed to strangle me while I slept.
Miriam Toews (All My Puny Sorrows)
When I woke, I was nestled on top of Ren’s chest. His arms were wrapped around me, and my legs were entwined with his. I was surprised I could breathe all night since my nose was smashed against his muscular torso. It had gotten cold, but my quilt covered both of us and his body, which maintained a warmer-than-average temperature, had kept me toasty all night. Ren was still asleep, so I took the rare opportunity to study him. His powerful frame was relaxed and his face was softened by sleep. His lips were full, smooth, and utterly kissable, and for the first time, I noticed how long his sooty lashes were. His glossy dark hair fell softly over his brow and was mussed in a way that made him look even more irresistible. So this is the real Ren. He doesn’t seem real. He looked like an archangel who fell to the earth. I’d been with Ren night and day for the past four weeks, but the time he was a man was such a small fraction of each day that he seemed almost like a dream guy, a real life Prince Charming. I traced a black eyebrow, following its arch with my finger, and lightly brushed the silky dark hair away from his face. Hoping not to disturb him, I sighed, shifted slowly, and tried to move away, but his arms tensed, restraining me. He sleepily mumbled, “Don’t even think about moving” and pulled me back to snuggle me close again. I rested my cheek against his chest, felt his heartbeat, and contented myself with listening to its rhythm. After a few minutes, he stretched and rolled to his side, pulling me with him. He kissed my forehead, blinked open his eyes, and smiled at me. It was like watching the sun come up. The handsome, sleeping man was potent enough, but when he turned his dazzling white smile on me and blinked open his cobalt blue eyes, I was dumbstruck. I bit my lip. Alarm bells started going off in my head. Ren’s eyes fluttered open, and he tucked some loose hair behind my ear. “Good morning, rajkumari. Sleep well?” I stammered, “I…you…I…slept just fine, thank you.” I closed my eyes, rolled away from him, and stood up. I could deal with him a lot better if I didn’t think about him much, or look at him, or talk to him, or hear him. He wrapped his arms around me from behind, and I felt his smile as he pressed his lips to the soft spot behind my ear. “Best night of sleep I’ve had in about three hundred and fifty years.
Colleen Houck (Tiger's Curse (The Tiger Saga, #1))
I was never afraid of my monsters. I controlled them. I slept with them in the dark, and they never stepped beyond their boundaries. My monsters had never asked to be bora with bolts in their necks, scaly wings, blood hunger in their veins, or deformed faces from which beautiful girls shrank back in horror. My monsters were not evil; they were simply trying to survive in a tough old world. They reminded me of myself and my friends: ungainly, unlovely, beaten but not conquered. They were the outsiders searching for a place to belong in a cataclysm of villagers’ torches, amulets, crucifixes, silver bullets, radiation bombs, air force jets, and flamethrowers. They were imperfect, and heroic in their suffering.
Robert R. McCammon (Boy's Life)
Dream Fable I saw myself in a wide green garden, more beautiful than I could begin to understand. In this garden was a young girl. I said to her, "How wonderful this place is!" "Would you like to see a place even more wonderful than this?" she asked. "Oh yes," I answered. Then taking me by the hand, she led me on until we came to a magnificent palace, like nothing that was ever seen by human eyes. The young girl knocked on the door, and someone opened it. Immediately both of us were flooded with light. Only Allah knows the inner meaning of the maidens we saw living there. Each one carried in her hand a serving-tray filled with light. The young girl asked the maidens where they were going, and they answered her, "We are looking for someone who was drowned in the sea, and so became a martyr. She never slept at night, not one wink! We are going to rub funeral spices on her body." "Then rub some on my friend here," the young girl said. "Once upon a time," said the maidens, "part of this spice and the fragrance of it clung to her body -- but then she shied away." Quickly the young girl let go of my hand, turned, and said to me: "Your prayers are your light; Your devotion is your strength; Sleep is the enemy of both. Your life is the only opportunity that life can give you. If you ignore it, if you waste it, You will only turn to dust." Then the young girl disappeared.
Rabia al Basri
A few months ago, a fog blinded me, thicker than ever before. I slept in the monster’s arms. I felt its breath on my neck, its scaled stomach rising and falling against my back, its head and face invisible as always. I couldn’t pretend anymore to Margaret that I was working. The children receded into noises grating on my ears. I stopped moving. Weeks went by indistinguishable one from another. I could smell the rot of myself, my armpits, my breath, my groin, as though the living part of death had already commenced, the preliminary decomposing, as the will fades. In Dante and Milton hell is vivid. Sin organizes the dead into struggle. The darkness bristles with life. There is story upon story to tell. But in the fog there is nothing to see. The monster you lie with is your own. The struggle is endlessly private. I thought it was over. That one night the beast at my back would squeeze more tightly and I would cease breathing. What remained of me hoped for it.
Adam Haslett (Imagine Me Gone)
Because I ran away from home, slept with who knows how many men for shelter, sliced myself up like a Thanksgiving turkey, and corrupted you by taking your virginity.
B. Celeste (Dare You to Hate Me (Lindon U, #1))
I felt unready to hold myself responsible for the decision if I slept with him
Aspen Matis (Girl in the Woods: A Memoir)
You haven’t slept for two days, I kept telling myself.
Cat Marnell (How to Murder Your Life)
It took almost an hour to get to Bernard's house. Somewhere in Long Island. Beautiful trees. I'd never seen such beautiful trees. Out in the driveway, one of Bernard's nephews had slit his pants legs to the knee and was running up and down in the sunlight, watching how they caught the breeze. Inside the house, people stood around a table piled with food talking about Isaac. I knew I didn't belong there. I felt like a fool and an imposter. I stood by the window, making myself invisible. I didn't think it would be so painful. And yet. To hear people talk about the son I'd only been able to imagine as if he were as familiar to them as a relative was almost too much to bear. So I slipped away. I wandered through the rooms of Isaac's half-brother's house. I thought: My son walked on this carpet. I came to a guest bedroom. I thought: From time to time, he slept in this bed. This very bed! His head on these pillows. I lay down. I was tired, I couldn't help myself. The pillow sank under my cheek. And as he lay here, I thought, he looked out this very window, at that very tree.
Nicole Krauss (The History of Love)
I had begun to realise how much I'd adapted to Keith's needs and preferences. Just small stuff: what time we went to bed, which side I slept on, not cooking cauliflower. Allowances and adaptions anyone in a long-term relationship has to make, accumulating over time. But I wasn't in a relationship anymore. I wanted to know what of myself needed to be reclaimed.
Graeme Simsion (Two Steps Forward)
I'm going to tell you something that a wise man once told me: it's not the darkness that's terrifying, it's what you might find in it. I was always afraid of the dark as a child, afraid monsters would sneak into my room at night, but now I know there's nothing to fear. Not because monsters don't exist. They do. I've seen them. I've encountered them. One attacked me as I slept. I even became one myself afterward. No, the reason there's nothing to fear in the dark is because real monsters lurk in the light, too. They hide in plain sight. The trick is to find them before they can get you. I'm not a good man. I'm not. I know...I've learned my lesson. I find peace in the darkness sometimes now. I find peace with her. I'll never forget, but she makes me feel like it's okay to remember. It's okay to remember the pain and fear. It's okay to admit the darkness terrified me. Because I found some light in it. I found her.
J.M. Darhower (Torture to Her Soul (Monster in His Eyes, #2))
The Janus Guard will also be out that night,” he said, one hand reaching out to squeeze her shoulder. “Just as we have been and will be for every night of the Nine.” “Good.” “Speaking of which—Kelley…” Sonny seemed suddenly exhausted. He turned his face to the west, and she could see the fatigue etched into the lines and planes of his face. “It’s getting late. You need to leave the park. Please. Don’t argue with me this time. Just go. The sun will set soon, and I have to go to work.” He squared his shoulders as though he expected her to put up a fight. She did—a little—but only out of actual concern for him. “Shouldn’t you be taking it easy? I mean, you try to hide it with the whole tough-guy-swagger thing and all, but I saw the bandages. You’re really hurt. Aren’t you?” “It’s not so bad.” “Wow. You are a terrible liar.” He frowned fiercely at her. “You also look like you haven’t slept in a week.” She took a tentative step toward him and put a hand on his chest, looking up into his silver-gray eyes. He put his hand over the top of hers, and she could feel the rhythm of his heart beating under her palm, through his shirt and the bandages. “I’m fine.” “Are you sure?” With his other hand, Sonny reached up and brushed a stray auburn curl out of her eyes. “I’m sure.” He smiled down at her, and she felt her insides melt a little. His whole face changed when he smiled. It was like the sun coming out. “But,” he continued, “I’ll be even better if you are safe at home and I don’t have to worry about you for tonight.” “I can take care of myself, Sonny Flannery,” she bristled, halfheartedly. “Please?” He turned up the wattage on his smile. “I…okay.” She felt her own lips turn up in a shy, answering smile. “I’ll be good. This once.” “That’s my girl.” Kelley was silent. Those three words of Sonny’s had managed to render her utterly speechless.
Lesley Livingston (Wondrous Strange (Wondrous Strange, #1))
I went down to the lobby and slipped the catch and then took a shower and put my pajamas on and lay down on the bed. I could have slept for a week. I dragged myself up off the bed again and set the catch on the door, which I had forgotten to do, and walked through a deep hard snowdrift out to the kitchenette and laid out glasses and a bottle of liqueur Scotch I had been saving for a really high-class seduction.
Raymond Chandler (Farewell, My Lovely (Philip Marlowe, #2))
I rigged an election trying to be Golden. I spent sixteen years with my head in a toilet trying to be light. I drank myself numb for a decade, trying to be pleasant. I’ve giggled at and slept with assholes, trying to be touchable. I’ve held my tongue so hard I tasted blood, trying to be gentle. I’ve spent thousands on potions and poisons, trying to be youthful. I have denied myself for decades, trying to be pure.
Glennon Doyle (Untamed)
Do I need to check up on you guys later? You know the rules.No sleeping in opposite-sex rooms." My face flames,and St. Clair's cheeks grow blotchy. It's true.It's a rule. One that my brain-my rule-loving, rule-abiding brain-conveniently blocked last night. It's also one notoriously ignored by the staff. "No,Nate," we say. He shakes his shaved head and goes back in his apartment. But the door opens quickly again,and a handful of something is thrown at us before it's slammed back shut. Condoms.Oh my God, how humiliating. St. Clair's entire face is now bright red as he picks the tiny silver squares off the floor and stuffs them into his coat pockets. We don't speak,don't even look at each other,as we climb the stairs to my floor. My pulse quickens with each step.Will he follow me to my room,or has Nate ruined any chance of that? We reach the landing,and St. Clair scratches his head. "Er..." "So..." "I'm going to get dressed for bed. Is that all right?" His voice is serious,and he watches my reaction carefully. "Yeah.Me too.I'm going to...get ready for bed,too." "See you in a minute?" I swell with relief. "Up there or down here?" "Trust me,you don't want to sleep in my bed." He laughs,and I have to turn my face away,because I do,holy crap do I ever. But I know what he means.It's true my bed is cleaner. I hurry to my room and throw on the strawberry pajamas and an Atlanta Film Festival shirt. It's not like I plan on seducing him. Like I'd even know how. St. Clair knocks a few minutes later, and he's wearing his white bottoms with the blue stripes again and a black T-shirt with a logo I recognize as the French band he was listening to earlier. I'm having trouble breathing. "Room service," he says. My mind goes...blank. "Ha ha," I say weakly. He smiles and turns off the light. We climb into bed,and it's absolutely positively completely awkward. As usual. I roll over to my edge of the bed. Both of us are stiff and straight, careful not to touch the other person. I must be a masochist to keep putting myself in these situations. I need help. I need to see a shrink or be locked in a padded cell or straitjacketed or something. After what feels like an eternity,St. Clair exhales loudly and shifts. His leg bumps into mine, and I flinch. "Sorry," he says. "It's okay." "..." "..." "Anna?" "Yeah?" "Thanks for letting me sleep here again. Last night..." The pressure inside my chest is torturous. What? What what what? "I haven't slept that well in ages." The room is silent.After a moment, I roll back over. I slowly, slowly stretch out my leg until my foot brushes his ankle. His intake of breath is sharp. And then I smile,because I know he can't see my expression through the darkness.
Stephanie Perkins (Anna and the French Kiss (Anna and the French Kiss, #1))
I slept on my tarp, not wanting to shelter myself on that last night, and woke before dawn to watch the sun rise over Mount Hood. It was really over, I thought. There was no way to go back, to make it stay. There was never that. I sat for a long while, letting the light fill the sky, letting it expand and reach down into the trees. I closed my eyes and listened hard to Eagle Creek. It was running to the Columbia River, like me.
Cheryl Strayed (Wild: From Lost to Found on the Pacific Crest Trail)
It was, of course, the memory of Sophie and Nathan's long-ago plunge that set loose this flood [of tears], but it was also a letting go of rage and sorrow for the many others who during these past months had battered at my mind and now demanded my mourning: Sophie and Nathan, yes, but also Jan and Eva -- Eva with her one-eyed mis -- and Eddie Farrell, and Bobby Weed, and my young black savior Artiste, and Maria Hunt, and Nat Turner, and Wanda Muck-Horch von Kretschmann, who were but a few of the beaten and butchered and betrayed and martyred children of the earth. I did not weep for the six million Jews or the two million Poles or the one million Serbs or the five million Russians -- I was unprepared to weep for all humanity -- but I did weep for these others who in one way or another had become dear to me, and my sobs made an unashamed racket across the abandoned beach; then I had no more tears to shed, I lowered myself to the sand...and slept...When I awoke it was nearly morning...I heard children chattering nearby. I stirred...Blessing my resurrection, I realized that the children had covered me with sand, protectively, and that I lay as safe as a mummy beneath this fine, enveloping overcoat.
William Styron (Sophie's Choice)
with his words in my head I slept for thirty or forty forevers while the grass shrieked and the trees tremored it was crazy letting my youth pass like that giving myself up to the abstract fears balconies collapsing over the east river as far as the eye could see until all is miniature wind over water without end when I am dead I will have something to say about death & all the men stretched out a girl must be a graveyard I am a descendant of fields and want to keep my mind off it, especially
Deborah Landau (The Last Usable Hour)
And in the same way, I’ve always given my best energy to things outside myself, believing that I’d be fine, that I was a workhorse, that I didn’t need special treatment or babying or, heaven help me, self-care. Self-care was for the fragile, the special, the dainty. I was a linebacker, a utility player, a worker bee. I ate on the run, slept in my clothes, worshiped at the altar of my to-do list, ignored the crying out of my body and soul like they were nothing more than the buzz of pesky mosquitoes.
Shauna Niequist (Present Over Perfect: Leaving Behind Frantic for a Simpler, More Soulful Way of Living)
before I got to the shore, which I conjectured was about eight o’clock in the evening. I then advanced forward near half a mile, but could not discover any sign of houses or inhabitants; at least I was in so weak a condition, that I did not observe them. I was extremely tired, and with that, and the heat of the weather, and about half a pint of brandy that I drank as I left the ship, I found myself much inclined to sleep. I lay down on the grass, which was very short and soft, where I slept sounder than ever I remembered to have done in my life, and, as I reckoned, about nine hours; for when I awaked, it was just day-light. I attempted to rise, but was not able to stir: for, as I happened to lie on my back, I found my arms and legs were strongly fastened on each side to the ground; and my hair, which was long
Jonathan Swift (Gulliver's Travels)
Touch was absolutely out of the question. I couldn’t stop sweating. My heart, a butterfly pinned to a glacier. Empires fell inside my mouth. I touched myself like a pogrom & broke my sex into a history of inconsequential shames. I wept viciously inside of my own stomach & had it condemned. From an upside-down bell I drank silence, subsisted on the memory of someone else’s hands. Wolves sang & I did not answer. I forgot their names. Mornings were the worst, then there were days & evenings. Streetlights & darkened sycamore & suburban grief so full it made me foolish. I shattered my fist on the Lord’s jaw. Sorrow sat, licking my wrists & my neck. I slept at its convenience. O, uncelebrated body. My penis, a lighthouse on the bottom of the ocean, shining shadows at the undersides of boats. Nobody drowned for so many years. Desperate for the making of those candy-throated ghosts, I found the rooms between the violence of comets. I threw myself into anything’s path. Even the sky bent around me. How lonely to be something that nothing wants to kill. (So I Locked Myself Inside A Star for Twenty Years)
Jeremy Radin
We will need to stay over two nights in a hotel on our trip home.” Momentarily alarmed, I glanced at Ren. “Okay. Umm, I was thinking that maybe this time if you don’t mind, we could check out one of those bigger hotels. You know, something that has more people around. With elevators and rooms that lock. Or even better, a nice high-rise hotel in a big city. Far, far, far away from the jungle?” Mr. Kadam chuckled. “I’ll see what I can do.” I graced Mr. Kadam with a beatific smile. “Good! Could we please go now? I can’t wait to take a shower.” I opened the door to the passenger side then turned and hissed in a whisper aimed at Ren, “In my nice, upper-floor, inaccessible-to-tigers hotel room.” He just looked at me with his innocent, blue-eyed tiger face again. I smiled wickedly at him and hopped in the Jeep, slamming the door behind me. My tiger just calmly trotted over to the back where Mr. Kadam was loading the last of his supplies and leapt up into the back seat. He leaned in the front, and before I could push him away, he gave me a big, wet, slobbery tiger kiss right on my face. I sputtered, “Ren! That is so disgusting!” I used my T-shirt to swipe the tiger saliva from my nose and cheek and turned to yell at him some more. He was already lying down in the back seat with his mouth hanging open, as if he were laughing. Before I could really lay into him, Mr. Kadam, who was the happiest I’d ever seen him, got into the Jeep, and we started the bumpy journey back to a civilized road. Mr. Kadam wanted to ask me questions. I knew he was itching for information, but I was still fuming at Ren, so I lied. I asked him if he could hold off for a while so I could sleep. I yawned big for dramatic effect, and he immediately agreed to let me have some peace, which made me feel guilty. I really liked Mr. Kadam, and I hated lying to people. I excused my actions by mentally blaming Ren for this uncharacteristic behavior. Convincing myself that it was his fault was easy. I turned to the side and closed my eyes. I slept for a while, and when I woke up, Mr. Kadam handed me a soda, a sandwich, and a banana. I raised my eyebrow at the banana and thought of several good monkey jokes I could annoy Ren with, but I kept quiet for Mr. Kadam’s sake.
Colleen Houck (Tiger's Curse (The Tiger Saga, #1))
Perhaps the immobility of the things that surround us is forced upon them by our conviction that they are themselves, and not anything else, and by the immobility of our conceptions of them. For it always happened that when I awoke like this, and my mind struggled in an unsuccessful attempt to discover where I was, everything would be moving round me through the darkness: things, places, years. My body, still too heavy with sleep to move, would make an effort to construe the form which its tiredness took as an orientation of its various members, so as to induce from that where the wall lay and the furniture stood, to piece together and to give a name to the house in which it must be living. Its memory, the composite memory of its ribs, knees, and shoulder-blades offered it a whole series of rooms in which it had at one time or another slept; while the unseen walls kept changing, adapting themselves to the shape of each successive room that it remembered, whirling madly through the darkness. And even before my brain, lingering in consideration of when things had happened and of what they had looked like, had collected sufficient impressions to enable it to identify the room, it, my body, would recall from each room in succession what the bed was like, where the doors were, how daylight came in at the windows, whether there was a passage outside, what I had had in my mind when I went to sleep, and had found there when I awoke. The stiffened side underneath my body would, for instance, in trying to fix its position, imagine itself to be lying, face to the wall, in a big bed with a canopy; and at once I would say to myself, "Why, I must have gone to sleep after all, and Mamma never came to say good night!" for I was in the country with my grandfather, who died years ago; and my body, the side upon which I was lying, loyally preserving from the past an impression which my mind should never have forgotten, brought back before my eyes the glimmering flame of the night-light in its bowl of Bohemian glass, shaped like an urn and hung by chains from the ceiling, and the chimney-piece of Siena marble in my bedroom at Combray, in my great-aunt's house, in those far distant days which, at the moment of waking, seemed present without being clearly denned, but would become plainer in a little while when I was properly awake.
Marcel Proust (Swann’s Way)
After Dan’s death, I would have happily starved myself to death but there were these children in the house . . . they needed feeding, they needed clothing, they couldn’t have cared less that I was grief-stricken. They just peed and pooped and cried and ate and slept as if nothing at all had happened.
Abbi Waxman (The Garden of Small Beginnings)
A date,” he repeated, his eyes assessing me closer now, as if he was trying to figure out who would ask me on a date. It was the moment I realized I could definitely grow to hate Prince Elias. How had I ever slept with this man? How could I have given him my virginity? I was disgusted with myself. “Yes, a date.
Claire Contreras (The Sinful King (Naughty Royals, #1))
lower her to my side and pull her against me so that her head is resting on my jacket. Her breath tastes like starburst and it makes me want to keep kissing her until I can identify every single flavor. Her hand touches my arm and she gives it a tight squeeze just as my tongue slips inside her mouth. That would be strawberry on the tip of her tongue. She keeps her hand on my arm, periodically moving it to the back of my head, then returning it to my arm. I keep my hand on her waist, never once moving it to touch any other part of her. The only thing we explore is each other’s mouths. We kiss without making another sound. We kiss until the alarm sounds off on my phone. Despite the noise, neither of us stops kissing. We don’t even hesitate. We kiss for another solid minute until the bell rings in the hallway outside and suddenly lockers are slamming shut and people are talking and everything about our moment is stolen from us by all the inconvenient external factors of school. I still my lips against hers, then slowly pull back. “I have to get to class,” she whispers. I nod, even though she can’t see me. “Me, too,” I reply. She begins to scoot out from beneath me. When I roll onto my back, I feel her move closer to me. Her mouth briefly meets mine one more time, then she pulls away and stands up. The second she opens the door, the light from the hallway pours in and I squeeze my eyes shut, throwing my arm over my face. I hear the door shut behind her and by the time I adjust to the brightness, the light is gone again. I sigh heavily. I also remain on the floor until my physical reaction to her subsides. I don’t know who the hell she was or why the hell she ended up here, but I hope to God she comes back. I need a whole hell of a lot more of that. • • • She didn’t come back the next day. Or the day after that. In fact, today marks exactly a week since she literally fell into my arms, and I’ve convinced myself that maybe that whole day was a dream. I did stay up most of the night before watching zombie movies with Chunk, but even though I was going on two hours of sleep, I don’t know that I would have been able to imagine that. My fantasies aren’t that fun. Whether she comes back or not, I still don’t have a fifth period and until someone calls me out on it, I’ll keep hiding out in here. I actually slept way too much last night, so I’m not tired. I pull my phone out to text Holder when the door to the closet begins to open. “Are you in here, kid?” I hear her whisper. My heart immediately picks up pace and I can’t tell if it’s that she came back or if it’s because the
Colleen Hoover (Finding Cinderella (Hopeless, #2.5))
If Piper and Rudy hadn't seen me, I'd have done the inside work myself." Roarke lifted an eyebrow as he secured the first string and took out another. "I might have some mild objection to my wife dating strange men." She went back to the tray, took another pretty canape at random. "I wouldn't have slept with any of them... unless the job called for it." She grinned at him. "And I would have thought of you the whole time." "It wouldn't have taken very long -- since I'd have cut off his balls and handed them to you." He kept stringing lights as she choked on her wine. "Jesus, Roarke, I'm only kidding." "Mmm-hmm. Me, too, darling. Hand me another string of these.
J.D. Robb (Holiday in Death (In Death, #7))
Water was not my element. It dragged at my clothes as I swam. A little farther, I told myself. I could hear him coming, his arms stronger than mine from a lifetime of lifting marble. I felt the water shiver near my foot where he had grabbed and almost caught me. I looked back, and saw how close he was and how far the shore behind. Then his hand seized my ankle and yanked, pulling me to him like a rope, hand over hand, and then he had me up and by the throat, his face pressed to mine. I think he expected me to fight and claw. I didn’t fight. I seized him close around the ribs, holding my wrists so he could not get free. The sudden weight pulled us both under. He kicked and flailed back to the surface, but I was heavier than he had thought, and the waves slopped at our mouths. Let it be now, I prayed. At first I thought it was just the cold of the water. It crept up my fingers and my arms, which stiffed around him. He struggled and fought, but my hands were fused together and nothing he tried could break them. Then it was in my legs too, and my belly and my chest, and no matter how he kicked, he could not haul us back up to the air. He hit at me, but it was watery and weak and I felt nothing, just the solid circle of my arms, and the inexorable drag of my body. He had no chance, really. He was only flesh. We fell through the darkness, and the coolness slid up my neck and bled the color from my lips and cheeks. I thought of Paphos and how clever she was. I thought of her stone sister, peaceful on her couch. We fell through the currents and I thought of how the crabs would come for him, climbing over my pale shoulders. The ocean floor was sandy and soft as pillows. I settled into it and slept.
Madeline Miller (Galatea)
Many a morning I found myself waking up in America and being surprised to find myself in a bed. I had been having nightmares all night long, and I didn’t know where I was. It would take me awhile to adjust, because I couldn’t believe I was in a bed. What was I doing in a bed? After the war I never slept more than three or four hours a night. In
Charles Brandt ("I Heard You Paint Houses", Updated Edition: Frank "The Irishman" Sheeran & Closing the Case on Jimmy Hoffa)
But it is true that I am a wretch. I have murdered the lovely and the helpless; I have strangled the innocent as they slept, and grasped to death his throat who never injured me or any other living thing. I have devoted my creator, the select specimen of all that is worthy of love and admiration among men, to misery; I have pursued him even to that irremediable ruin. There he lies, white and cold in death. You hate me; but your abhorrence cannot equal that with which I regard myself. I look on the hands which executed the deed; I think on the heart in which the imagination of it was conceived, and long for the moment when these hands will meet my eyes, when that imagination will haunt my thoughts no more.
Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley (Frankenstein)
I spent sixteen years with my head in a toilet trying to be light. I drank myself numb for a decade, trying to be pleasant. I’ve giggled at and slept with assholes, trying to be touchable. I’ve held my tongue so hard I tasted blood, trying to be gentle. I’ve spent thousands on potions and poisons, trying to be youthful. I have denied myself for decades, trying to be pure.
Glennon Doyle (Untamed)
One side of Kieran’s mouth curved up in response to my non-answer. A teasing grin I saw in the delicate dance of moonlight making its way through the window. My eyes narrowed. “You’re teasing me.” He reached over, gently tugging on the sleeve of my shirt—well, his shirt that I’d helped myself to while the one I slept in was still drying after being laundered. “I would never.
Jennifer L. Armentrout (The War of Two Queens (Blood And Ash, #4))
...this evening it's too late, too late to get things right, I'll go to sleep, so that I may say, hear myself say, a little later, I've slept, he's slept, but he won't have slept, or else he's sleeping now, he'll have done nothing, nothing but go on, doing what, doing what he does, that is to say, I don't know, giving up, that's it, I'll have gone on giving up, having had nothing, not being there.
Samuel Beckett (Texts for Nothing and Other Shorter Prose 1950-1976)
If I’m going to tell you about my life, if I’m going to tell you what really happened, the truth behind all of my marriages, the movies I shot, the people I loved, who I slept with, who I hurt, how I compromised myself, and where it all landed me, then I need to know that you understand me. I need to know that you will listen to exactly what I’m trying to tell you and not place your own assumptions into my story.
Taylor Jenkins Reid (The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo)
I rigged an election trying to be Golden. I spent sixteen years with my head in a toilet trying to be light. I drank myself numb for a decade, trying to be pleasant. I’ve giggled at and slept with assholes, trying to be touchable. I’ve held my tongue so hard I tasted blood, trying to be gentle. I’ve spent thousands on potions and poisons, trying to be youthful. I have denied myself for decades, trying to be pure.
Glennon Doyle Melton (Untamed)
I was always the girl growing up who just wasn’t quite like the rest of them. I liked working hard. I liked contorting my body until I could feel the ache inside my bones, until I could feel the pain in my teeth. I liked to wear lipstick and nothing else and found myself fascinated with the shape of my lips and the different colors I could make them. I ate too little. Slept too much. Masturbated far too often and at far too young an age. I enjoyed the feeling of being naked alone behind closed doors, exploring my deepest secrets within my imagination, as I put my hand over the rapid pace of my heart to feel how nervous it made me. I blushed at the faintest mention of my name and almost perished when complimented. I loved to find the answers behind someone’s eyes. There’s nothing quite like the feeling of when someone REALLY looks at you. And I read. Every chance I got.
R.B. O'Brien
I’m so drunk,” I said through the bathroom door, though it wasn’t true. I’d declared it to him in my anxiety to take pressure and responsibility off of myself for what I wanted to do next. I had already decided I at least wanted to kiss him, be held. Yet my desire surprised me. I felt the weight of shame not only on rape now, but on sex too. I was confused by it. I felt unready to hold myself responsible for the decision if I slept with him.
Aspen Matis (Girl in the Woods: A Memoir)
When we’d all settled down from that first night, Julie found a bag on the porch, which we thought must have been left by the same three girls who had brought me to them. Just like the clues on my skin, I’d only been left with two worldly possessions. The first was a wad of cash that I immediately handed to Ben and Julie as compensation for giving me a home. Most of it went to pay for Akinli’s medical bills, which was fine with me. I didn’t know if there was a word bigger than soul mates, something that meant the feeling of being so connected that it was hard to tell where one person ended and the other began. If there was, that word belonged to Akinli and me. The second thing was a bottle of water. It was so peculiar, this water, a blue that was both dark and brilliant, too thick to see through but still carrying light. No matter the season, it was always cold, and there were tiny shells in it that never settled. Sometimes I slept with it, even though it was cold enough to wake me up if I rolled on it the wrong way. It was the only clue I had to tell me who I had been before the night I was left on the porch, and I loved it second only to Akinli. Somehow, I knew that this love was important, as if treasuring the water meant I treasured myself. And I did. I loved my recovering body, I loved my blue-eyed soul mate, I loved my adopted family. I held the water to my chest, and I loved.
Kiera Cass (The Siren)
Lost In black as solid as a mire In a land no one would die for In a time I was lost To anyone who ever loved me The world set itself on fire And the sky collapsed above me In a place no one could call home In a place I breathed and slept In a battle no one understood That continued all the same I sat defenseless and alone With the insignificance of my name In the midst of the Lord’s birth On a night meant to be peaceful In a country of the Prophet Where women don’t live free I spoke to God from the shaking Earth And prayed my mother would forgive me In a city without power In a desert torn by religion In a bank between two rivers We added up the decade’s cost And glorified the final hour Of a war that everyone had lost In the dust of helplessness In a concrete bunker In a fate I chose myself I waited without remorse To fight again as recompense For wasted lives and discourse -an original poem about an attack on our base in Iraq during the Arab Spring
Dianna Skowera
I haven’t slept in two days so I feel tired now, lying on my sleeping bag. My feet are very cold but I am ok. In the long transition to sleep I entertain a complex paranoia about a group of people who will be assigned to review each action I have taken throughout my life. And once dead, I’ll meet them in council. There will be a group assigned to review my “thank-yous said” to “those not said.” There will be a group assigned to review every face I’ve made just after waking up. There will be a group assigned to review how I treated people who asked me for help. And a group assigned to review the times I felt bad but didn’t tell anyone. A group assigned to review the times I deliberately threw crayons into the small fan my third grade bus driver positioned by his face. And a group assigned to review bugs I needlessly stepped on. A group for this nap I’m taking too. And in the paranoia, I see myself getting dressed-up to go before them and answer questions. I’m very nervous before each council but I try to be brave. “This nap you took—” someone says. “Yes?” A mean-looking woman in the middle of the panel, she clasps her hands together and she says, “Tell us about this nap.” When I wake up, one of my legs is numb. And I remain awake in my sleeping bag, staring at the blinds until the black behind gets more blue, then lighter blue, then white. Sometimes I definitely feel a sense of accomplishment but it’s never after accomplishing something.
Sam Pink (Person)
The aged Summerlea nurse pushed past Valik and Laci and stalked over to his sickbed. “You are supposed to be sleeping.” Her face scrunched up in an expression of severe disapproval. She didn’t care that he was king. She chided him like she might any misbehaving schoolboy. He almost smiled. It was clear Tildavera Greenleaf was accustomed to being in charge, and equally accustomed to speaking her mind and having her orders obeyed. But this was one order he had no intention of heeding. “I’ve slept long enough. Khamsin told me you were the best healer in all of Mystral, and it’s clear she wasn’t exaggerating. You did a fine job bringing me back from the brink of death. I’m sure you can keep me clinging to life a while longer.” The old woman’s lips pursed. “My patients do not ‘cling to life,’ ” she snapped. “I pride myself on their making a full and miraculous recovery. But carting them all about the countryside with their insides hanging out is not at all conducive to that outcome!
C.L. Wilson (The Winter King (Weathermages of Mystral, #1))
Well, good morning!” he said, wrapping his arms around my waist. His lips settled on my neck. I was glad I’d spritzed myself with Giorgio. “Good morning,” I whispered back, a slight edge to my voice. Equal parts embarrassed at my puffy eyes and at the fact that I’d slept so late that day, I kept hugging him tightly, hoping against hope he’d never let go and never back up enough to get a good, long look at me. Maybe if we just stood there for fifty years or so, wrinkles would eventually shield my puffiness.
Ree Drummond (The Pioneer Woman: Black Heels to Tractor Wheels)
The phrase was so simple and for most women, so generic. Any other female would have laughed off such a question from a boy she had no interest in. But in my case, it was a landmark moment in my life. Number 23 had gone where no other man had gone before. Until then, my history with men had been volatile. Instead of a boyfriend or even a drunken prom date, my virginity was forfeited to a very disturbed, grown man while I was unconscious on a bathroom floor. The remnants of what could be considered high school relationships were blurry and drug infused. Even the one long-lasting courtship I held with Number 3 went without traditional dating rituals like Valentine’s Day, birthdays, anniversary gifts, or even dinner. Into young adulthood, I was never the girl who men asked on dates. I was asked on many fucks. I was a pair of tits to cum on, a mouth to force a cock down, and even a playmate to spice up a marriage. At twenty-four, I had slept with twenty-two men, gotten lustfully heated with countless more, but had never once been given flowers. With less than a handful of dates in my past, romance was something I accepted as not being in the cards for me. My personality was too strong, my language too foul, and my opinions too outspoken. No, I was not the girl who got asked out on dates and though that made me sad at times, I buried myself too deeply in productivity to dwell on it. But, that day, Number 23 sparked a fuse. That question showed a glimmer of a simplistic sweetness that men never gave me. Suddenly he went from being some Army kid to the boyfriend I never had.
Maggie Georgiana Young (Just Another Number)
I slept. And then I awoke, late that same afternoon, I awoke full in the knowledge that I was alone. I have now seen a great many children in the same place I found myself in that day, orphans, feeling themselves abandoned and left open before all the elements of the world, and I have seen how some explode in tantrum while others walk in an almost stupor, how some cry for days and others move with an uncanny focus, addressing only the moment before them. Some part of them has died, and like surgeons, they know that amputation must be immediate.
Ta-Nehisi Coates
...and I'll be able to go on, no, I'll be able to stop, or start, another guzzle of lies but piping hot, it will last my time, it will be my time and place, my voice and silence, a voice of silence, the voice of my silence. It's with such prospects they exhort you to have patience, whereas you are patient, and calm, somehow somewhere calm, what calm here, ah that's an idea, say how calm it is here, and how fine I feel, and how silent I am, I'll start right away, I'll say what calm and silence, which nothing has ever broken, nothing will ever break, which saying I don't break, or saying I'll be saying, yes, I'll say all that tomorrow, yes, tomorrow evening, some other evening, not this evening, this evening it's too late, too late to gets things right, I'll go to sleep, so that I may say, hear myself say, a little later, I've slept, he's slept, but he won't have slept, or else he's sleeping now, he'll have done nothing, nothing but go on, doing what, doing what he does, that is to say, I don't know, giving up, that's it, I'll have gone on giving up, having had nothing, not being there.
Samuel Beckett (Stories and Texts for Nothing)
Speaking of full of dirt, I am hardly fit company but in the spirit of wifely tolerance I wonder if you will accompany me to a pool a little ways from here." He meant to bathe. The memory of him emerging from the sauna at the lodge flashed through her mind. Her mouth was suddenly dry. "I thought Vikings liked to boil themselves first." "Ordinarily I would agree with you, but if I get into a sauna now, I will fall asleep." "You are tired from your exertions on the trailing field?" The look he trailed over her was purely male and so evocative as to warm her clear through. "I am tried from my exertions in our bed,lady,as I suspect you well know." "That is a relief!" He looked at her in surprise, prompting a red face and a quick explanation. "I meant that I could not help but think of you toiling as usual while I slept half the day away and felt myself shamed for such sloth." "Oh,well, if it's any consolation to you, I fell asleep under a tree, to the great hilarity of my men, who are not likely to let me forget it anytime soon." She laughed,tension coiling, and without hesitation she held out her hand to him.
Josie Litton (Come Back to Me (Viking & Saxon, #3))
Is this okay with you, Jenna? For him to stay here?" "Yeah," I said. "It's good. You have no idea what it takes for him to ask for help." I spent all evening in Alan's office, reading at his desk and keeping Cameron company. Mostly he slept, snoring lightly and once in a while murmuring unintelligible something into his pillow. I turned my chair so that I could look at him whenever I wanted, at his face or at the bare foot that stuck out from under the covers, or at his arm dangling off the side of the sofa bed. Around eleven, when I was ready for bed, Cameron woke up. I brought him broth and crackers. "Hi," I said. "Have you been here all this time?" "Most of it." Alan's beige pajamas looked small and uncomfortable on Cameron. "You don't have to," he said. "I can take care of myself." He reached for the broth. I watched him slurp straight from his bowl, everything about him becoming younger and more boyish by the second-rosy lips on the white rim of the bowl, wrists without enough pajama sleeve to cover them, cowlick hair and sleepy eyes. "I know you can. But you don't have to." "Well..." He finally looked at me. "Thanks.
Sara Zarr (Sweethearts)
but no matter how far I forgot myself, I never quite lost my sense of being watched over, and when I got particularly lost, it was the gaze of the cat that seemed to reach into my muddle and light my way back to my room, my notes, my pencils and my pencil sharpener. He even slept with me on my bed some nights, and I took to leaving my curtains open so that if he woke he could sit on my windowsill seeing things move in the dark that were invisible to the human eye. And that is all. Apart from these things there was nothing else. Only the eternal twilight and the story.
Diane Setterfield (The Thirteenth Tale)
While she slept that night, I stole something from her suitcase, which was just the same twined-up shepi bag she'd brought from the island. I took the book. I told myself it wasn't stealing if the thing had already been stolen once. Two acts of thievery canceled out, became something more like salvaging. I still have it, that book. You should read it to me sometime, skipping all the words you think I don' know. I won' t know them, but I'll pretend to, shame you for thinking me stupid, and then you'll be so sorry you'll read the whole book to me all over again, redacting nothing.
K-Ming Chang (Bestiary)
It felt good to scrub my skin, as if I was removing everything that felt dead about me. I was the "queen of skin care." Who knew that simply exfoliating my skin until raw (which I knew better than to do but now couldn't resist) would one day be what was left of my skin care regimen? My daily cleansing and moisturizing, weekly hydrating and purifying masks, along with monthly photo facials, glycolic peels, or microdermabrasion, was down to "super-scrub Saturdays." Pampering was a thing of the past. No more sunscreen applications to guard against the "UVAging" rays that were out to get me 365 days a year. No more weekly Epsom salts hot baths to detox my body, or lathering up with my favorite vanilla-scented moisturizing cream. No more applications of extra virgin olive oil to the ends of my hair to prevent splitting. I didn't even treat myself to my bedtime chamomile tea. All that had been replaced by a new nightly ritual of passing out on the bed, face down, which went against my cardinal rule of youth maintenance. Before the deep hollow pain was born inside me, I slept on my back, at the perfect thirty-degree angle to ensure proper circulation and prevention of any unnecessary creasing or wrinkling.
Cari Kamm (Fake Perfect Me)
I thought of Emily's legs hanging down as Mother carried her. I thought about the empty look on her face as Mother hugged her. I thought about never being able to play in the forest alone, or make a friend, or spend more than a few minutes by myself. I thought about not having even the privacy of my own bed at night. I thought, for the first time in a long time, about how those things had made me feel, when Mother slept with me. But to Lilith I said, "She doesn't know how good she's got it," and for a moment she and I were united once more in our disdain for our little sister, our parent's favorite, who couldn't understand how lucky she was.
Heather Young (The Lost Girls)
I Could Give All to Time To Time it never seems that he is brave To set himself against the peaks of snow To lay them level with the running wave, Nor is he overjoyed when they lie low, But only grave, contemplative and grave. What now is inland shall be ocean isle, Then eddies playing round a sunken reef Like the curl at the corner of a smile; And I could share Time’s lack of joy or grief At such a planetary change of style. I could give all to Time except – except What I myself have held. But why declare The things forbidden that while the Customs slept I have crossed to Safety with? For I am There, And what I would not part with I have kept.
Robert Frost
What my dad did was wrong, awful, inexcusable, but maybe there's still hope for him. Maybe if he can get the help he needs, they'll be able to resurrect the man who taught me about Bach's toccata and slept in the chair in my room when I was afraid of the dark. And if there's still hope for my dad, there has to still be hope for me. Mabe it's true that he and I have the same blag slug inside of us, but it's up to me to conquer it. I owe that to my dad. I owe that to myself. [....] I make a promise to myself: /I will be stronger than my sadness./ I will do my best to become the girl from Roman's drawing. The girl with the bright eyes. The girl with hope.
Jasmine Warga (My Heart and Other Black Holes)
Wanting to kill myself is was an appropriate and reasonable response to a whole series of unfortunate events that had rendered life unlivable. Oh, yes, I know the shrinks would say that they could have helped, but that's half the trouble with this bloody country, isn't it? No one's willing to face their responsibilities. It's always someone else's fault. Boo hoo hoo. Well, I happen to be one of those rare individuals who believe that what went on with Mummy and Daddy had nothing to do with me screwing a fifteen-year-old. I happen to believe that I would have slept with her regardless of whether I'd been breast-fed or not, and it was time to face up to what I'd done.
Nick Hornby (A Long Way Down)
Christ, I’m tired. I need sleep. I need peace. I need for my balls to not be so blue they’re practically purple. As purple as Sarah Von Titebottum’s— My mind comes to a screeching halt with the unexpected thought. And the image that accompanies it—the odd, blushing lass with her glasses and her books and very tight bottom. Sarah’s not a contestant on the show, so I’m willing to bet both my indigo balls that there’s not a camera in her room. And, I can’t believe I’m fucking thinking this, but, even better—none of the other girls will know where to find me—including Elizabeth. I let the cameras noisily track me to the lavatory, but then, like an elite operative of the Secret Intelligence Service, I plaster myself to the wall beneath their range and slide my way out the door. Less than five minutes later, I’m in my sleeping pants and a white T-shirt, barefoot with my guitar in hand, knocking on Sarah’s bedroom door. I checked the map Vanessa gave me earlier. Her room is on the third floor, in the corner of the east wing, removed from the main part of the castle. The door opens just a crack and dark brown eyes peer out. “Sanctuary,” I plead. Her brow crinkles and the door opens just a bit wider. “I beg your pardon?” “I haven’t slept in almost forty-eight hours. My best friend’s girlfriend is trying to praying-mantis me and the sound of the cameras following me around my room is literally driving me mad. I’m asking you to take me in.” And she blushes. Great. “You want to sleep in here? With me?” I scoff. “No, not with you—just in your room, love.” I don’t think about how callous the words sound—insulting—until they’re out of my mouth. Could I be any more of a dick? Thankfully, Sarah doesn’t look offended. “Why here?” she asks. “Back in the day, the religious orders used to give sanctuary to anyone who asked. And since you dress like a nun, it seemed like the logical choice.” I don’t know why I said that. I don’t know what’s wrong with me. Somebody just fucking shoot me and be done with it. Sarah’s lips tighten, her head tilts, and her eyes take on a dangerous glint. I think Scooby-Doo put it best when he said, Ruh-roh. “Let me make sure I’ve got this right—you need my help?” “Correct.” “You need shelter, protection, sanctuary that only I can give?” “Yes.” “And you think teasing me about my clothes is a wise strategy?” I hold up my palms. “I never said I was wise. Exhausted, defenseless, and desperate.” I pout . . . but in a manly kind of way. “Pity me.” A smile tugs at her lips. And that’s when I know she’s done for. With a sigh, she opens the door wide. “Well, it is your castle. Come in.” Huh. She’s right—it is my castle. I really need to start remembering that
Emma Chase (Royally Matched (Royally, #2))
I truly meant to only find you and bring you back to the landing, sweet, but when I saw you here alone, I could not help myself. It has been so many years I have longed for the forbidden fruit, Mary, and I am not really a very patient man. You were angered with me today for kissing Maud, but years of smiling and laughing with you and breathing in your sweet scent and seeing that luscious face and body near me and then bidding you a curt goodnight as you go to Will's or Henry's bed is pure hell." He reached over to smooth her hair. "I tell you, Mary, whomever I have slept with these past five years, I have dreamed it was you or, if not, your face came back to tease me-to haunt me-soon after. Do you understand?
Karen Harper (The Last Boleyn)
I only slept a few hours when I went to bed, and feeling that I could not sleep any more, got up. I had hung my shaving glass by the window, and was just beginning to shave. Suddenly I felt a hand on my shoulder, and heard the Count’s voice saying to me, “Good-morning.” I started, for it amazed me that I had not seen him, since the reflection of the glass covered the whole room behind me. In starting I had cut myself slightly, but did not notice it at the moment. Having answered the Count’s salutation, I turned to the glass again to see how I had been mistaken. This time there could be no error, for the man was close to me, and I could see him over my shoulder. But there was no reflection of him in the mirror!
Bram Stoker (Dracula)
March 22, 2014 I have found the truth in the lies I told myself. I thought I could run from this woman, but she continues to chase me. In my mind, my heart, she’s always there. An entire bottle of whiskey can’t drown out her voice. I wake up each morning hoping it will finally be the day that I get over her. But then night falls and memories of her begin to torture me until sleep is no longer an option. Each night I fall into this abyss of nothingness, feeling only the emptiness of not having her beside me. I have found the truth in the lies I told myself. I slept with another woman, all the while wishing it was her and I still went through with it. What a fool I was. I still long to feel the satisfaction I was supposed to have felt that night. I still long to feel the freedom I’d hoped to gain from seeking refuge in the arms of another woman. But I’ll never be free of her. It will take an eternity to break out of these shackles. For one month, ONE month I couldn’t keep my dick in my pants and yet for two years I haven’t even so much as looked at another woman. I’ve remained completely faithful to a memory. Devoted to her smile. Committed to her ever-changing green eyes. I have read through the past entries in this journal and I noticed that I have never used her name. As if inking it would somehow solidify the feelings I think I’ve always felt. I have found the truth in the lies I told myself. I do love her. Love is this painful.
Jacqueline Francis - The Journal
 I find myself humming as I reach the top of the steps, but then I halt. “Really now, Kearan,” I say. He’s facedown on the ground. Likely passed out in his own vomit, yet again. This can’t continue. I’ll have to think of some fitting punishment for him. I couldn’t care less what he does in his free time, but when he’s on duty, he’d better be ready to perform at his best. Suddenly his whole body jerks upward, and I take a step back in case he’s having some sort of sleeping fit. “Three,” he says on a raspy breath before leaning down to the ground again. Is he sleep talking? He’s been known to do that even with his eyes open. No, wait—“Are you doing push-ups?” I ask. “F-f-four,” he says as he rises again. “Sweet stars, you are. What’s gotten into you?” After five, he lies on the ground and rolls onto his back, breathing heavily. “Just passing the time, is all. We’ve a long journey ahead of us.” Yes, but he usually passes the time with drink. He reaches into one of his pockets. Ah, there he is. But what he pulls out isn’t a flask. It’s a canteen. The kind we use on the ship for storing water. He sits up and takes a few sips. “What’s in that?” He holds the canteen out to me, and I take a sniff. It’s water. “She dumped all of my flasks into the sea while I slept,” Kearan says. “Didn’t realize she cared so much.” He searches across the ship for Sorinda, but she must be belowdecks because he focuses on me once more. “Any more questions, Captain?” His tone sounds bored. “Are we headed in the right direction?” “Course, I’m keeping her steady.” “Good,” I say before moving on quickly. Lest Kearan break into song or sprout wings.
Tricia Levenseller (Daughter of the Siren Queen (Daughter of the Pirate King, #2))
It was time for me to go that Thursday night. We’d just watched Citizen Kane--a throwback to my Cinema 190 class at USC--and it was late. And though a soft, cozy bed in one of the guest rooms sounded much more appealing than driving all the way home, I’d never really wanted to get into the habit of sleeping over at Marlboro Man’s house. It was the Pretend-I’m-a-Proper-Country-Club-Girl in me, mixed with a healthy dose of fear that Marlboro Man’s mother or grandmother would drop by early in the morning to bring Marlboro Man some warm muffins or some such thing and see my car parked in the driveway. Or even worse, come inside the house, and then I’d have to wrestle with whether or not to volunteer that “I slept in a guest room! I slept in a guest room!”, which only would have made me look more guilty. Who needs that? I’d told myself, and vowed never to put myself in that predicament.
Ree Drummond (The Pioneer Woman: Black Heels to Tractor Wheels)
For the Word created heaven and earth and all things [Ps. 33:6]; the Word must do this thing, and not we poor sinners. In short, I will preach it, teach it, write it, but I will constrain no man by force, for faith must come freely without compulsion. Take myself as an example. I opposed indulgences and all the papists, but never with force. I simply taught, preached, and wrote God’s Word; otherwise I did nothing. And while I slept [cf. Mark 4:26–29], or drank Wittenberg beer with my friends Philipp and Amsdorf, the Word so greatly weakened the papacy that no prince or emperor ever inflicted such losses upon it. I did nothing; the Word did everything. The Second Sermon, March 10, 1522, Monday after Invocavit. [Luther, M. (1999, c1959). Vol. 51: Luther’s works, vol. 51: Sermons I. (J. J. Pelikan, H. C. Oswald & H. T. Lehmann, Ed.). Luther’s Works (51:III-78). Philadelphia: Fortress Press]
Martin Luther
I was merely the instrument of habits of not working, of not going to bed, of not sleeping, which must find expression somehow, cost what it might; if I offered them no resistance, if I contented myself with the pretext they seized from the first opportunity that the day afforded them of acting as they chose, I escaped without serious injury, I slept for a few hours after all, towards morning, I read a little, I did not over-exert myself; but if I attempted to thwart them, if I pretended to go to bed early, to drink only water, to work, they grew restive, they adopted strong measures, they made me really ill, I was obliged to double my dose of alcohol, did not lie down in bed for two days and nights on end, could not even read, and I vowed that another time I would be more reasonable, that is to say less wise, like the victim of an assault who allows himself to be robbed for fear, should he offer resistance, of being murdered.
Marcel Proust (In Search of Lost Time [volumes 1 to 7])
Nicolas couldn’t stop looking at her with her head thrown back, her thick, black hair streaming in the wind, her body perfectly balanced as she guided the boat. With her head back, he could see her neck and the outline of her body beneath the shirt, almost as if she wore nothing at all. His body stirred, hardened. Nicolas didn’t bother to fight the reaction. Whatever was between them, the chemistry was apparent and it wasn’t going to go away. He could sit in the boat and admire the flawless perfection of her skin. Imagine the way it would feel beneath his fingertips, his palm. Dahlia’s head suddenly turned and her eyes were on him. Hot Wild. Wary. “Stop touching my breasts.” She lifted her chin, faint color stealing under her skin. He held up his hands in surrender. “I have no idea what you’re talking about.” “You know exactly what I’m talking about.” Dahlia’s breasts ached, felt swollen and hot, and deep inside her, a ravenous appetite began to stir. Nicolas was sitting across from her, looking the epitome of the perfect male statue, his features expressionless and his eyes cool, but she felt his hands on her body. Long caresses, his palms cupping her breasts, thumbs stroking her nipples until she shivered in awareness and hunger. “Oh, that.” “Yes, that.” She couldn’t help seeing the rigid length bulging beneath his jeans, and he made no effort to hide it. His unashamed display sent her body into overtime reaction so that she felt a curious throbbing where no throbbing needed to be. She grit her teeth together. “I can still feel you touching me.” He nodded thoughtfully. “I consider myself an innocent victim in this situation,” Nicolas said. “I’ve always had control, in fact I pride myself on self-discipline. You seem to have destroyed it. Permanently.” He wasn’t exactly lying to her. He couldn’t take his eyes or his mind from her body. It was an unexpected pleasure, a gift. He was devouring her with his eyes. With his mind. A part of her, the truly insane part—and Dahlia was beginning to believe there really was one—loved the way he was looking at her. She’d never experienced a man’s complete attention centered on her in a sexual way before. And he wasn’t just any man. He was . . . extraordinary. “Well, stop all the same,” she said, caught between embarrassment and pleasure. “I don’t see why my having a few fantasies should bother you.” “I’m feeling your fantasies. I think you’re projecting just a little too strongly.” His eyebrows shot up. “You mean you can actually feel what I’m thinking? My hands on your body? I thought you were reading my mind.” “I told you I could feel you touching me.” “That’s amazing. Has that ever happened before?” “No, and it better not happen again. Good grief, we’re strangers.” “You slept with me last night,” he pointed out. “Do you sleep with many strangers?” He was teasing her, but the question sent a dark shadow skittering through him.
Christine Feehan (Mind Game (GhostWalkers, #2))
The day wore on.While yet Rycca slept, Dragon did all the things she had said he would do-paced back and forth, contemplated mayhem,and even honed his blade on the whetstone from the stable.All except being oblivious to her,for that he could never manage. But when she awoke,sitting up heavy-lidded, her mouth so full and soft it was all he could do not to crawl back into bed with her,he put aside such pursuits and controlled himself admirably well,so he thought. Yet in the midst of preparing a meal for them from the provisions in the pantry of the lodge,he was stopped by Rycca's hand settling upon his. "Dragon," she said softly, "if you add any more salt to that stew, we will need a barrel of water and more to drink with it." He looked down, saw that she was right, and cursed under his breath. Dumping out the spoiled stew, he started over. They ate late but they did eat.He was quite determined she would do so,and for once she seemed to have a decent appetite. "I'm glad to see your stomach is better," he said as she was finishing. She looked up,startled. "What makes you say that?" "You haven't seemed able to eat regularly of late." "Oh,well,you know...so many changes...travel...all that." He nodded,reached for his goblet, and damn near knocked it over as a sudden thought roared through him. "Rycca?" She rose quickly,gathering up the dishes. His hand lashed out, closing on her wrist. Gently but inexorably, he returned her to her seat. Without taking his eyes from her,he asked, "Is there something you should tell me?" "Something...?" "I ask myself what sort of changes may cause a woman to be afflicted with an uneasy stomach and it occurs to me I've been a damned idiot." "Not so! You could never be that." "Oh,really? How otherwise would I fail to notice that your courses have not come of late? Or is that also due to travel,wife?" "Some women are not all that regular." "Some women do not concern me.You do,Rycca. I swear,if you are with child and have not told me, I will-" She squared her shoulders,lifted her head,and met his eyes hard on. "Will what?" "What? Will what? Does that mean-" "I'm sorry,Dragon." Truly repentant, Rycca sighed deeply. "I was going to tell you.I was just waiting for a calmer time.I didn't want you to worry more." Still grappling with what she had just revealed,he stared at her in astonishment. "You mean worry that my wife and our child are bait for a murderous traitor?" "I know you're angry and you have a right to be.But if I had told you, we wouldn't be here now." "Damn right we wouldn't be!" He got up from the table so abruptly that his chair toppled over and crashed to the floor.Ignoring it,Dragon paced back and forth,glaring at her. Rycca waited,trusting the storm to pass. As she did,she counted silently, curious to see just how long it would take her husband to grasp fully what he had discovered. Nine...ten... "We're going to have a baby." Not long at all. She nodded happily. "Yes,we are, and you're going to be a wonderful father." He walked back to the table,picked her up out of her chair,held her high against his chest,and stared at her. "My God-" Rycca laughed. "You can't possibly be surprised.It's not as though we haven't been doing our best to make this happen." "True,but still it's absolutely incredible." Very gently,she touched his face. "Perhaps we think of miracles wrongly. They're supposed to be extraordinarily rare but in fact they're as commonplace as a bouquet of wildflowers plucked by a warrior...or a woman having a baby." Dragon sat down with her still in his arms and held her very close.He swallowed several times and said nothing. Both could have remained contentedly like that for a long while, but only a few minutes passed before they were interrupted. The raven lit on the sill of the open window just long enough to catch their attention,then she was gone into the bloodred glare of the dying day.
Josie Litton (Come Back to Me (Viking & Saxon, #3))
have always been a reader; I have read at every stage of my life, and there has never been a time when reading was not my greatest joy. And yet I cannot pretend that the reading I have done in my adult years matches in its impact on my soul the reading I did as a child. I still believe in stories. I still forget myself when I am in the middle of a good book. Yet it is not the same. Books are, for me, it must be said, the most important thing; what I cannot forget is that there was a time when they were at once more banal and more essential than that. When I was a child, books were everything. And so there is in me, always, a nostalgic yearning for the lost pleasure of books. It is not a yearning that one ever expects to be fulfilled. And during this time, these days when I read all day and half the night, when I slept under a counterpane strewn with books, when my sleep was black and dreamless and passed in a flash and I woke to read again—the lost joys of reading returned to me. Miss Winter restored to me the virginal qualities of the novice reader, and then with her stories she ravished me.
Diane Setterfield (The Thirteenth Tale)
Anna: Right. I can only imagine. Etienne: And what, exactly, ist hat supposed to mean? Anna: Forget it. Etienne: No. Let’s not forget it. I’m sick and tired of forgetting it, Anna. Anna: You’re tired of forgetting it? I’ve had to do nothing BUT forget it. Do you think it’s easy sitting in my room every night, thinking about you and Ellie? Do you think any of this has been easy for me? Etienne: I’m sorry. Anna: You tell me I’m beautiful, and that you like my hair and you like my smile. You rest your leg against mine in darkened theatres, and then you acta s if nothing happened when the lights go up. You slept in my bed for three nights straight, and then you jsut … blew me off for the next month. What am I supposed to do with that, St. Clair? You said on my birthday that you were afraid of being alone, but I’ve been here this whole time. This whole time. Etienne: Anna. I am so sorry that I’ve hur you. I’ve made terrible decisions. And I realize it’s possible that I don’t deserve your forgiveness, because it’s taken me this long to get here. But I don’t understand why you’re not giving me the chance. You didn’t even let me explain myself lad weekend. You just tore into me, expected the worst of me. But the only truth I know is what i feel when we’re together. I thought you trusted those feelings, too. I thought you trusted me, I thought you knew me … Anna: But that’s just it! I don’t know you. I tell you everything, St. Clair. About my dad, about Bridgette and Toph, about Matt and Cherrie. I told you about being a virgin. And what have you told me? Nothing! I know nothing about you. Not about your father, not about Ellie … Etienne: You know me better than anyone. Andi f you ever bothered to pay attention, you’d understand that things with my father are beyond shite right now. And I can’t believe you think so poorly of me that you’d assume I’d wait the entire year to kiss you, and then the moment it happened, I’d … I’d be done with you. OF COURSE I was with Ellie that night. I WAS BLODDY BREAKING UP WITH HER! You say that I’m afraid of being alone, and it’s true. I am And I’m not proud o fit. But you need to take a good look at yourself, Anna, because I am not the only one in this room who suffers this problem.
Stephanie Perkins (Anna and the French Kiss (Anna and the French Kiss, #1))
He studied, fretted, complained. He never should have taken the job; it was impossible. The next day he would be flying: he never should have taken the job; it was too simple to be worth his labors. Joy to despair, joy to despair, day to day, hour to hour. Sometimes Inigo would wake to find him weeping: “What is it, Father?” “It is that I cannot do it. I cannot make the sword. I cannot make my hands obey me. I would kill myself except what would you do then?” “Go to sleep, Father.” “No, I don’t need sleep. Failures don’t need sleep. Anyway, I slept yesterday.” “Please, Father, a little nap.” “All right; a few minutes; to keep you from nagging.” Some nights Inigo would awake to see him dancing. “What is it, Father?” “It is that I have found my mistakes, corrected my misjudgments.” “Then it will be done soon, Father?” “It will be done tomorrow and it will be a miracle.” “You are wonderful, Father.” “I’m more wonderful than wonderful, how dare you insult me.” But the next night, more tears. “What is it now, Father?” “The sword, the sword, I cannot make the sword.” “But last night, Father, you said you had found your mistakes.” “I was mistaken; tonight I found new ones, worse ones. I am the most wretched of creatures. Say you wouldn’t mind it if I killed myself so I could end this existence.” “But I would mind, Father. I love you and I would die if you stopped breathing.” “You don’t really love me; you’re only speaking pity.” “Who could pity the greatest sword maker in the history of the world?” “Thank you, Inigo.” “You’re welcome, Father.” “I love you back, Inigo.” “Sleep, Father.” “Yes. Sleep.” A whole year of that. A year of the handle being right, but the balance being wrong, of the balance being right, but the cutting edge too dull, of the cutting edge sharpened, but that threw the balance off again, of the balance returning, but now the point was fat, of the point regaining sharpness, only now the entire blade was too short and it all had to go, all had to be thrown out, all had to be done again. Again. Again. Domingo’s health began to leave him. He was fevered always now, but he forced his frail shell on, because this had to be the finest since Excalibur. Domingo was battling legend, and it was destroying him. Such a year.
William Goldman (The Princess Bride)
After two weeks came the first letter from Alexander. Tatiasha, Can there be anything harder than this? Missing you is a physical aching that grips me early in the morning and does not leave me, not even as I draw my last waking breath. My solace in these waning empty summer days is the knowledge that you’re safe, and alive, and healthy, and that the worst that you have to go through is serfdom for four well-meaning old women. The wood piles I’ve left are the lightest in the front. The heaviest ones are for the winter. Use them last, and if you need help carrying them, God help me, ask Vova. Don’t hurt yourself. And don’t fill the water pails all the way to the top. They’re too heavy. Getting back was rough, and as soon as I came back, I was sent right out to the Neva, where for six days we planned our attack and then made a move in boats across the river and were completely crushed in two hours. We didn’t stand a chance. The Germans bombed the boats with the Vanyushas, their version of my rocket launcher, the boats all sank. We were left with a thousand fewer men and were no closer to crossing the river. We’re now looking at other places we can cross. I’m fine, except for the fact that it’s rained here for ten days straight and I’ve been hip deep in mud for all that time. There is nowhere to sleep, except in the mud. We put our trench coats down and hope it stops raining soon. All black and wet, I almost felt sorry for myself until I thought of you during the blockade. I’ve decided to do that from now on. Every time I think I have it so tough, I’m going to think of you burying your sister in Lake Ladoga. I wish you had been given a lighter cross than Leningrad to carry through your life. Things are going to be relatively quiet here for the next few weeks, until we regroup. Yesterday a bomb fell in the commandant’s bunker. The commandant wasn’t there at the time. Yet the anxiety doesn’t go away. When is it going to come again? I play cards and soccer. And I smoke. And I think of you. I sent you money. Go to Molotov at the end of August. Don’t forget to eat well, my warm bun, my midnight sun, and kiss your hand for me, right in the palm and then press it against your heart. Alexander Tatiana read Alexander’s letter a hundred times, memorizing every word. She slept with her face on the letter, which renewed her strength.
Paullina Simons (The Bronze Horseman (The Bronze Horseman, #1))
With one final flip the quarter flew high into the air and came down on the mattress with a light bounce. It jumped several inches off the bed, high enough for the instructor to catch it in his hand. Swinging around to face me, the instructor looked me in the eye and nodded. He never said a word. Making my bed correctly was not going to be an opportunity for praise. It was expected of me. It was my first task of the day, and doing it right was important. It demonstrated my discipline. It showed my attention to detail, and at the end of the day it would be a reminder that I had done something well, something to be proud of, no matter how small the task. Throughout my life in the Navy, making my bed was the one constant that I could count on every day. As a young SEAL ensign aboard the USS Grayback, a special operation submarine, I was berthed in sick bay, where the beds were stacked four high. The salty old doctor who ran sick bay insisted that I make my rack every morning. He often remarked that if the beds were not made and the room was not clean, how could the sailors expect the best medical care? As I later found out, this sentiment of cleanliness and order applied to every aspect of military life. Thirty years later, the Twin Towers came down in New York City. The Pentagon was struck, and brave Americans died in an airplane over Pennsylvania. At the time of the attacks, I was recuperating in my home from a serious parachute accident. A hospital bed had been wheeled into my government quarters, and I spent most of the day lying on my back, trying to recover. I wanted out of that bed more than anything else. Like every SEAL I longed to be with my fellow warriors in the fight. When I was finally well enough to lift myself unaided from the bed, the first thing I did was pull the sheets up tight, adjust the pillow, and make sure the hospital bed looked presentable to all those who entered my home. It was my way of showing that I had conquered the injury and was moving forward with my life. Within four weeks of 9/11, I was transferred to the White House, where I spent the next two years in the newly formed Office of Combatting Terrorism. By October 2003, I was in Iraq at our makeshift headquarters on the Baghdad airfield. For the first few months we slept on Army cots. Nevertheless, I would wake every morning, roll up my sleeping bag, place the pillow at the head of the cot, and get ready for the day.
William H. McRaven (Make Your Bed: Little Things That Can Change Your Life...And Maybe the World)
I brushed my teeth like a crazed lunatic as I examined myself in the mirror. Why couldn’t I look the women in commercials who wake up in a bed with ironed sheets and a dewy complexion with their hair perfectly tousled? I wasn’t fit for human eyes, let alone the piercing eyes of the sexy, magnetic Marlboro Man, who by now was walking up the stairs to my bedroom. I could hear the clomping of his boots. The boots were in my bedroom by now, and so was the gravelly voice attached to them. “Hey,” I heard him say. I patted an ice-cold washcloth on my face and said ten Hail Marys, incredulous that I would yet again find myself trapped in the prison of a bathroom with Marlboro Man, my cowboy love, on the other side of the door. What in the world was he doing there? Didn’t he have some cows to wrangle? Some fence to fix? It was broad daylight; didn’t he have a ranch to run? I needed to speak to him about his work ethic. “Oh, hello,” I responded through the door, ransacking the hamper in my bathroom for something, anything better than the sacrilege that adorned my body. Didn’t I have any respect for myself? I heard Marlboro Man laugh quietly. “What’re you doing in there?” I found my favorite pair of faded, soft jeans. “Hiding,” I replied, stepping into them and buttoning the waist. “Well, c’mere,” he said softly. My jeans were damp from sitting in the hamper next to a wet washcloth for two days, and the best top I could find was a cardinal and gold FIGHT ON! T-shirt from my ‘SC days. It wasn’t dingy, and it didn’t smell. That was the best I could do at the time. Oh, how far I’d fallen from the black heels and glitz of Los Angeles. Accepting defeat, I shrugged and swung open the door. He was standing there, smiling. His impish grin jumped out and grabbed me, as it always did. “Well, good morning!” he said, wrapping his arms around my waist. His lips settled on my neck. I was glad I’d spritzed myself with Giorgio. “Good morning,” I whispered back, a slight edge to my voice. Equal parts embarrassed at my puffy eyes and at the fact that I’d slept so late that day, I kept hugging him tightly, hoping against hope he’d never let go and never back up enough to get a good, long look at me. Maybe if we just stood there for fifty years or so, wrinkles would eventually shield my puffiness. “So,” Marlboro Man said. “What have you been doing all day?” I hesitated for a moment, then launched into a full-scale monologue. “Well, of course I had my usual twenty-mile run, then I went on a hike and then I read The Iliad. Twice. You don’t even want to know the rest. It’ll make you tired just hearing about it.” “Uh-huh,” he said, his blue-green eyes fixed on mine. I melted in his arms once again. It happened any time, every time, he held me. He kissed me, despite my gold FIGHT ON! T-shirt. My eyes were closed, and I was in a black hole, a vortex of romance, existing in something other than a human body. I floated on vapors. Marlboro Man whispered in my ear, “So…,” and his grip around my waist tightened. And then, in an instant, I plunged back to earth, back to my bedroom, and landed with a loud thud on the floor. “R-R-R-R-Ree?” A thundering voice entered the room. It was my brother Mike. And he was barreling toward Marlboro Man and me, his arms outstretched. “Hey!” Mike yelled. “W-w-w-what are you guys doin’?” And before either of us knew it, Mike’s arms were around us both, holding us in a great big bear hug. “Well, hi, Mike,” Marlboro Man said, clearly trying to reconcile the fact that my adult brother had his arms around him. It wasn’t awkward for me; it was just annoying. Mike had interrupted our moment. He was always doing that.
Ree Drummond (The Pioneer Woman: Black Heels to Tractor Wheels)
He was standing there, smiling. His impish grin jumped out and grabbed me, as it always did. “Well, good morning!” he said, wrapping his arms around my waist. His lips settled on my neck. I was glad I’d spritzed myself with Giorgio. “Good morning,” I whispered back, a slight edge to my voice. Equal parts embarrassed at my puffy eyes and at the fact that I’d slept so late that day, I kept hugging him tightly, hoping against hope he’d never let go and never back up enough to get a good, long look at me. Maybe if we just stood there for fifty years or so, wrinkles would eventually shield my puffiness. “So,” Marlboro Man said. “What have you been doing all day?” I hesitated for a moment, then launched into a full-scale monologue. “Well, of course I had my usual twenty-mile run, then I went on a hike and then I read The Iliad. Twice. You don’t even want to know the rest. It’ll make you tired just hearing about it.” “Uh-huh,” he said, his blue-green eyes fixed on mine. I melted in his arms once again. It happened any time, every time, he held me. He kissed me, despite my gold FIGHT ON! T-shirt. My eyes were closed, and I was in a black hole, a vortex of romance, existing in something other than a human body. I floated on vapors.
Ree Drummond (The Pioneer Woman: Black Heels to Tractor Wheels)
Do you have any idea how much I love you?” he asked softly. Her long lashes fluttered, lifted, so that her violet eyes locked with his. A slow, fascinating smile curved her mouth. “Maybe, just a little.” She smoothed a line from his forehead. “I’ll be fine tonight. Do what you have to do and don’t worry about me.” “I would prefer that you slept for a while.” He shifted, eased his weight off her, surprised to find that he was still partially dressed. “That’s only because you have so much anger toward Romanov you don’t want me to know what you’re doing.” She propped herself up on one elbow so that her thick mane of silky hair spilled across her body, a thin veil over her breasts. His gut clenched hotly at the sight, his dark eyes going black with a sudden flare of desire. She laughed softly, the sound sultry in the night. “I think you could have sex all night and never be sated.” He bent down to taste temptation, his tongue bringing her nipple to a hard peak. “I would very much like to give it a try, sivamet--my love. I could lose myself in your body.” He nuzzled her gently, his hand trailing possessively down the curves of her body. Her fingers stroked through his thick hair. Her eyes held tenderness. “You think to protect Jacques by leaving him here with me as my bodyguard.” “You see too much.” “More than you know.
Christine Feehan (Dark Prince (Dark, #1))
Asking for Directions We could have been mistaken for a married couple riding on the train from Manhattan to Chicago that last time we were together. I remember looking out the window and praising the beauty of the ordinary: the in-between places, the world with its back turned to us, the small neglected stations of our history. I slept across your chest and stomach without asking permission because they were the last hours. There was a smell to the sheepskin lining of your new Chinese vest that I didn’t recognize. I felt it deliberately. I woke early and asked you to come with me for coffee. You said, sleep more, and I said we only had one hour and you came. We didn’t say much after that. In the station, you took your things and handed me the vest, then left as we had planned. So you would have ten minutes to meet your family and leave. I stood by the seat dazed by exhaustion and the absoluteness of the end, so still I was aware of myself breathing. I put on the vest and my coat, got my bag and, turning, saw you through the dirty window standing outside looking up at me. We looked at each other without any expression at all. Invisible, unnoticed, still. That moment is what I will tell of as proof that you loved me permanently. After that I was a woman alone carrying her bag, asking a worker which direction to walk to find a taxi.
Linda Gregg
Too often in the past, I made a public spectacle of myself on the worst possible occasions, in front of the worst possible people. I was an absolute swine. Brawling at parties. Pissing in fountains and vomiting in potted plants. I've slept with other men's wives, I've ruined marriages. It takes years of dedicated effort to discredit one's own name as thoroughly as I did, but by God, I set the bar. There will always be rumors and ugly gossip, and I can't contradict most of it because I was always too drunk to know whether it happened or not. Someday your sons will hear some of it, and any affection they feel for me will turn to ashes. I won't let my shame become their shame." Phoebe knew if she tried to argue with him point by point, it would only lead to frustration on her part and wallowing on his. She certainly couldn't deny that upper-class society was monstrously judgmental. Some people would perch ostentatiously on their moral pedestals, loudly accusing West while ignoring their own sins. Some people might overlook his blemished reputation if there was any advantage to them in doing so. None of that could be changed. But she would teach Justin and Stephen not to be influenced by hypocritical braying. Kindness and humanity- the values her mother had imparted- would guide them. "Trust us," she said quietly. "Trust me and my sons to love you.
Lisa Kleypas (Devil's Daughter (The Ravenels, #5))
Don’t cry Meg. It’s not that bad.” “It’s not that bad? Ha! I’m thirty years old, with two black eyes, a swollen nose, a big, honking, yellow knot on my forehead, and the haircut from hell. As if that isn’t enough, I had a transvestite in my bed this morning, my husband is a lying, cheating, cradle robbing, bastard, who at some point slept with my best friend.” Jack scooted over to the middle of the seat, and stopped listening to his head and wrapped his arms around her. Big mistake! From inside, four faces were pressed to the window. “My last orgasm-with a partner- was…hell I can’t remember when! I frequently knock myself out for entertainment purposes, I have little boobs, big feet, squishy panties, nosy neighbors and demon possessed fish. God hates me!” Jack held her tighter. “I have frequent flyer miles at the hospital. I fed my husband marijuana Ex-lax brownies and shoved a marble up his butt.” Jack pulled away to look at her and she was serious. And crying. Big, sad, alligator tears that made his heart swell. “My mother is a holy rolling, Catholic Dr. Ruth, complete with condoms and Rosary beads. I write about relationships and sex, both of which I suck at and I hired a Private Investigator to pimp me out.” Jack burst out laughing and she pushed him away and swatted his shoulder. “And now you’re laughing at me. Could things get any worse?
Amy Johnson
Who doesn't like to be a center for concern? A kind of second childhood falls on so many men. They trade their violence for the promise of a small increase of life span. In effect, the head of the house becomes the youngest child. And I have searched myself for this possibility with a kind of horror. For I have always lived violently, drunk hugely, eaten too much or not at all, slept around the clock or missed two nights of sleeping, worked to hard and too long in glory, or slobbed for a time in utter laziness. I've lifted, pulled, chopped, climbed, made love with joy and taken my hangovers as a consequence, not as a punishment. I did not want to surrender fierceness for a small gain in yardage. My wife married a man; I saw no reason why she should inherit a baby. I knew that ten or twelve thousand miles driving a truck, alone and unattended, over every kind of road, would be hard work, but to me it represented the antidote for the poison of the professional sick man. And in my own life I am not willing to trade quality for quantity. If this projected journey should proved too much then it was time to go anyway. I see to many men delay their exits with a sickly, slow reluctance to leave the stage. It's bad theater as well as bad living. I am very fortunate in having a wife who likes men, not elderly babies. Although this last foundation for the journey was never discussed, I am sure she understood it.
John Steinbeck (Travels with Charley: In Search of America)
April 18 Dear Ryan, I'm considering writing to one of those advice columnists about us. That's how confused I still am. When we started this, I thought that I just needed some time away from you. I just needed time to breathe. I needed a chance to live on my own and appreciate you again by missing you. Those first few months were torture. I felt so lonely. I felt exactly what I wanted myself to feel, which was that I couldn't live without you. I felt it all day. I felt it when I slept in an empty bed. I felt it when I came home to an empty house. But somehow, one day, it sort of became OK. I don't know when that happened. I thought at one point that maybe if I learned who you truly are, then I could love you again. Then I thought maybe if I learn who I really am, what I really want, then I could love you again. I have been grasping at things for months, trying to learn a lesson big enough, important enough, all-encompassing enough that it would bring us back together. But mostly, I'm just learning lessons about how to live my life. I'm learning how to be a better sister. I'm learning just how strong my mother has always been. That I should take my grandmother's advice more often. That sex can be healing. That Charlie isn't such a little kid anymore. I guess what I'm saying is that I've started focusing on other things. I don't feel all that desperate to figure us out and fix this. I feel sort of OK that it's not fixed. That's not the direction this is supposed to go, is it? Love, Lauren
Taylor Jenkins Reid (After I Do)
Soon it was time for us to leave; the clock had struck midnight, and we had miles to go before we slept. After throwing my bouquet and saying good-byes, Marlboro Man and I ran through the doors of the club and climbed into the back of a smoky black limousine--the vehicle that would take us to the big city miles away, where we’d stay before flying to Australia the next day. As we pulled away from the waving, birdseed-throwing crowd at the front door of the club, we immediately settled into each other’s arms, melting into a puddle of white silk and black boots and sleepy, unbridled romance. It was all so new. New dress…new love…a new country--Australia--that neither of us had ever seen. A new life together. A new life for me. New crystal, silver, china. A newly renovated, tiny cowboy house that would be our little house on the prairie when we returned from our honeymoon. A new husband. My husband. I wanted to repeat it over and over again, wanted to shout it to the heavens. But I couldn’t speak. I was busy. Passion had taken over--a beast had been unleashed. Sleep deprived and exhausted from the celebration of the previous week, once inside the sanctity of the limousine, we were utterly powerless to stop it…and we let it fly. It was this same passion that had gotten us through the early stages of our relationship, and, ultimately, through the choice to wave good-bye to any life I’d ever imagined for myself. To become a part of Marlboro Man’s life instead. It was this same passion that assured me that everything was exactly as it should be. It was the passion that made it all make sense.
Ree Drummond (The Pioneer Woman: Black Heels to Tractor Wheels)
Many a morning I found myself waking up in America and being surprised to find myself in a bed. I had been having nightmares all night long, and I didn’t know where I was. It would take me awhile to adjust, because I couldn’t believe I was in a bed. What was I doing in a bed? After the war I never slept more than three or four hours a night. In those days you didn’t talk about stuff like that. There was no such thing as war syndrome, but you knew something was different. You tried not to remember anything from over there, but things came back to you. You had done every damn thing overseas, from killing in cold blood to destroying property to stealing whatever you wanted and to drinking as much wine and having as many women as you wanted. You lived every minute of every day in danger of your own life and limb. You couldn’t take chances. Many times you had a split second to decide to be judge, jury, and executioner. You had just two rules you had to obey. You had to be back in your outfit when you went back on the line. You had to obey a direct order in combat. Break one of those rules and you could be executed yourself, right on the spot even. Otherwise, you flaunted authority. You lost the moral skill you had built up in civilian life, and you replaced it with your own rules. You developed a hard covering, like being encased in lead. You were scared more than you’d ever been in your life. You did certain things, maybe against your will sometimes, but you did them, and if you stayed over there long enough you didn’t even think about them anymore. You did them like you might scratch your head if it itched. You
Charles Brandt ("I Heard You Paint Houses", Updated Edition: Frank "The Irishman" Sheeran & Closing the Case on Jimmy Hoffa)
I sucked on a blade of grass and watched the millwheel turn. I was lying on my stomach on the stream's opposite bank, my head propped in my hands. There was a tiny rainbow in the mist above the froth and boil at the foot of the waterfall, and an occasional droplet found its way to me. The steady splashing and the sound of the wheel drowned out all other noises in the wood. The mill was deserted today, and I contemplated it because I had not seen its like in ages. Watching the wheel and listening to the water were more than just relaxing. It was somewhat hypnotic. … My head nodding with each creak of the wheel, I forced everything else from my mind and set about remembering the necessary texture of the sand, its coloration, the temperature, the winds, the touch of salt in the air, the clouds... I slept then and I dreamed, but not of the place that I sought. I regarded a big roulette wheel, and we were all of us on it-my brothers, my sisters, myself, and others whom I knew or had known-rising and falling, each with his allotted section. We were all shouting for it to stop for us and wailing as we passed the top and headed down once more. The wheel had begun to slow and I was on the rise. A fair-haired youth hung upside down before me, shouting pleas and warnings that were drowned in the cacophony of voices. His face darkened, writhed, became a horrible thing to behold, and I slashed at the cord that bound his ankle and he fell from sight. The wheel slowed even more as I neared the top, and I saw Lorraine then. She was gesturing, beckoning frantically, and calling my name. I leaned toward her, seeing her clearly, wanting her, wanting to help her. But as the wheel continued its turning she passed from my sight. “Corwin!” I tried to ignore her cry, for I was almost to the top. It came again, but I tensed myself and prepared to spring upward. If it did not stop for me, I was going to try gimmicking the damned thing, even though falling off would mean my total ruin. I readied myself for the leap. Another click... “Corwin!” It receded, returned, faded, and I was looking toward the water wheel again with my name echoing in my ears and mingling, merging, fading into the sound of the stream. … It plunged for over a thousand feet: a mighty cataract that smote the gray river like an anvil. The currents were rapid and strong, bearing bubbles and flecks of foam a great distance before they finally dissolved. Across from us, perhaps half a mile distant, partly screened by rainbow and mist, like an island slapped by a Titan, a gigantic wheel slowly rotated, ponderous and gleaming. High overhead, enormous birds rode like drifting crucifixes the currents of the air. We stood there for a fairly long while. Conversation was impossible, which was just as well. After a time, when she turned from it to look at me, narrow-eyed, speculative, I nodded and gestured with my eyes toward the wood. Turning then, we made our way back in the direction from which we had come. Our return was the same process in reverse, and I managed it with greater ease. When conversation became possible once more, Dara still kept her silence, apparently realizing by then that I was a part of the process of change going on around us. It was not until we stood beside our own stream once more, watching the small mill wheel in its turning, that she spoke.
Roger Zelazny (The Great Book of Amber (The Chronicles of Amber, #1-10))
Back home, Chris struggled to readjust, physically and mentally. He also faced another decision-reenlist, or leave the Navy and start a new life in the civilian world. This time, he seemed to be leaning toward getting out-he'd been discussing other jobs and had already talked to people about what he might do next. It was his decision, one way or another. But if I’d been resigned to his reenlistment last go-around, this time I was far more determined to let him know I thought he should get out. There were two important reasons for him to leave-our children. They really needed to have him around as they grew. And I made that a big part of my argument. But the most urgent reason was Chris himself. I saw what the war was doing to him physically. His body was breaking down with multiple injuries, big and small. There were rings under his eyes even when he had slept. His blood pressure was through the roof. He had to wall himself off more and more. I didn’t think he could survive another deployment. “I’ll support you whatever you decide,” I told him. “I want to be married to you. But the only way I can keep making sense of this is…I need to do the best for the kids and me. If you have to keep doing what is best for you and those you serve, at some point I owe it to myself and those I serve to do the same. For me, that is moving to Oregon.” For me, that meant moving from San Diego to Oregon, where we could live near my folks. That would give our son a grandfather to be close to and model himself after-very important things, in my mind, for a boy. I didn’t harp on the fact that the military was taking its toll. That argument would never persuade Chris. He lived for others, not himself. It didn’t feel like an ultimatum to me. In fact, when he described it that way later on, I was shocked. “It was an ultimatum,” he said. He felt my attitude toward him would change so dramatically that the marriage would be over. There would also be a physical separation that would make it hard to stay together. Even if he wasn’t overseas, he was still likely to be based somewhere other than Oregon. We’d end up having a marriage only in name. I guess looked at one way, it was an ultimatum-us or the Navy. But it didn’t feel like that to me at the time. I asked him if he could stay in and get an assignment overseas where we could all go, but Chris reminded me there was never a guarantee with the military-and noted he wasn’t in it to sit behind a desk. Some men have a heart condition they know will kill them, but they don’t want to go to the doctor; it’s only when their wives tell them to go that they go. It’s a poor metaphor, but I felt that getting out of the Navy was as important for Chris as it was for us. In the end, he opted to leave. Later, when Chris would give advice to guys thinking about leaving the military, he would tell them it would be a difficult decision. He wouldn’t push them one way or the other, but he would be open about his experiences. “There’ll be hard times at first,” he’d admit. “But if that is the thing you decide, those times will pass. And you’ll be able to enjoy things you never could in the service. And some of them will be a lot better. The joy you get from your family will be twice as great as the pleasure you had in the military.” Ultimatum or not, he’d come to realize retiring from the service was a good choice for all of us.
Taya Kyle (American Wife: Love, War, Faith, and Renewal)
BEAUTY I was charged with finding Beauty. The order whispered as I slept. A voice said it was my duty. Then quietly it wept. Filled with purpose, I set out. I was honored with my quest. In my mind there was no doubt I was up to this great test. In my garden I stopped first. My roses were in bloom. Their bright red glory burst With others mixed on Nature’s loom. Then a lady drew my gaze. She was gliding o’er the grass. Her features would gods amaze. I sighed deep and let her pass. A cathedral’s spire reached to the sky, Man-made wonder to behold. No sight more pleasing to the eye Than such a work both grand and bold. I came upon a mighty mountain, Snowcap glistening against blue sky. My eyes were drinking from beauty’s fountain. Yet I knew I could do better with another try. My journey lengthened. I crossed the earth. My will strengthened. To place beauty’s birth. Witness I was to the wonders Of beauty’s many layers. Fiery sunsets, tropic thunders, Children at their prayers. But each time I thought me near To beauty’s absolute, Something better would appear Even closer to the root. I wandered thus for many years. Despaired to ever reach my goal. I often found myself in tears. I had searched from pole to pole. Until one day on a dusty street In a poor part of the world, I found a woman begging at my feet, Her fingers gnarled and curled. I fished my pocket for a coin, Thinking good luck could be bought. Her eyes raised up to my eyes join. And I saw the woman owned what I sought. She let me pass into her soul. Into the garden there. Never in my life whole Had I conceived a sight so fair. I saw the Holy Face of God, From whose smile all beauty is born. All the steps that I had trod Were redeemed on that sweet morn
Carl Johnson
Why did you come back to Salt Lake?" I knew the answer before I asked the question and he knew I knew, and it was like you could see the shadow of it hanging there between us. "I needed to see you," he finally said. "It's hard to explain." "You don't have to." "I tried telling my mom once what happed that day. Showed her the hole in the window screen and Moe and even after that she said it was complicated, that my dad's a complicated man and we all needed to try harder to understand him." His voice was shaking now. "And I thought, hey, maybe she's right. Maybe he was just playing around, you know. Maybe we didn't need to run." "We did," I whispered. "That's why I had to come, see?" He didn't move and I didn't move, but in a few seconds I heard him sniffling and he couldn't stop and I knew he was crying. "Cameron." I propped myself up, reached out my arm. "Come here." He got up and came to me, dragging his blanket behind him like a child. I scooted over in my bed to make room. "Come on." He positioned himself beside me-I stayed under the covers, he was on top of them, his head next to mine on the pillow. I stroked his hair and thought of the week he'd lived at our house, the way we slept shoulder to shoulder in our sleeping bags in the living room and I got another good memory. Jennifer, Cameron had said. You awake? His voice was coming from across the room. I sat up. Yeah. Look. He was standing by the living room window. The blinds were closed, but he had his hands on the cord, a big smile on his face. Ready? I nodded, starting to smile myself. One, two, three, Cameron said, then pulled the blind up, hand over hand on the cord like someone on TV. His smile got even bigger as he watched my face. Snow. Giant flakes of it falling in front of the window even though it was only September. Now, I fell asleep with my arm over Cameron's chest, thinking of how the flakes had been slow and white in the glow of the streetlights that lined the apartment walkways, and the smile on his face and on mine, like the snow was personal, a gift he'd given me himself.
Sara Zarr (Sweethearts)
From: Bernadette Fox To: Manjula Kapoor Oh! Could you make dinner reservations for us on Thanksgiving? You can call up the Washington Athletic Club and get us something for 7 PM for three. You are able to place calls, aren’t you? Of course, what am I thinking? That’s all you people do now. I recognize it’s slightly odd to ask you to call from India to make a reservation for a place I can see out my window, but here’s the thing: there’s always this one guy who answers the phone, “Washington Athletic Club, how may I direct your call?” And he always says it in this friendly, flat… Canadian way. One of the main reasons I don’t like leaving the house is because I might find myself face-to-face with a Canadian. Seattle is crawling with them. You probably think, U.S./Canada, they’re interchangeable because they’re both filled with English-speaking, morbidly obese white people. Well, Manjula, you couldn’t be more mistaken. Americans are pushy, obnoxious, neurotic, crass—anything and everything—the full catastrophe as our friend Zorba might say. Canadians are none of that. The way you might fear a cow sitting down in the middle of the street during rush hour, that’s how I fear Canadians. To Canadians, everyone is equal. Joni Mitchell is interchangeable with a secretary at open-mic night. Frank Gehry is no greater than a hack pumping out McMansions on AutoCAD. John Candy is no funnier than Uncle Lou when he gets a couple of beers in him. No wonder the only Canadians anyone’s ever heard of are the ones who have gotten the hell out. Anyone with talent who stayed would be flattened under an avalanche of equality. The thing Canadians don’t understand is that some people are extraordinary and should be treated as such. Yes, I’m done. If the WAC can’t take us, which may be the case, because Thanksgiving is only two days away, you can find someplace else on the magical Internet. * I was wondering how we ended up at Daniel’s Broiler for Thanksgiving dinner. That morning, I slept late and came downstairs in my pajamas. I knew it was going to rain because on my way to the kitchen I passed a patchwork of plastic bags and towels. It was a system Mom had invented for when the house leaks.
Maria Semple (Where'd You Go, Bernadette)
As we pulled up at the big school gates, I saw tears rolling down my dad’s face. I felt confused as to what part of nature or love thought this was a good idea. My instinct certainly didn’t; but what did I know? I was only eight. So I embarked on this mission called boarding school. And how do you prepare for that one? In truth, I found it really hard; there were some great moments like building dens in the snow in winter, or getting chosen for the tennis team, or earning a naval button, but on the whole it was a survival exercise in learning to cope. Coping with fear was the big one. The fear of being left and the fear of being bullied--both of which were very real. What I learned was that I couldn’t manage either of those things very well on my own. It wasn’t anything to do with the school itself, in fact the headmaster and teachers were almost invariably kind, well-meaning and good people, but that sadly didn’t make surviving it much easier. I was learning very young that if I were to survive this place then I had to find some coping mechanisms. My way was to behave badly, and learn to scrap, as a way to avoid bullies wanting to target me. It was also a way to avoid thinking about home. But not thinking about home is hard when all you want is to be at home. I missed my mum and dad terribly, and on the occasional night where I felt this worst, I remember trying to muffle my tears in my pillow while the rest of the dormitory slept. In fact I was not alone in doing this. Almost everyone cried, but we all learned to hide it, and those who didn’t were the ones who got bullied. As a kid, you can only cry so much before you run out of tears and learn to get tough. I meet lots of folks nowadays who say how great boarding school is as a way of toughening kids up. That feels a bit back-to-front to me. I was much tougher before school. I had learned to love the outdoors and to understand the wild, and how to push myself. When I hit school, suddenly all I felt was fear. Fear forces you to look tough on the outside but makes you weak on the inside. This was the opposite of all I had ever known as a kid growing up. I had been shown by my dad that it was good to be fun, cozy, homely--but then as tough as boots when needed. At prep school I was unlearning this lesson and adopting new ways to survive. And age eight, I didn’t always pick them so well.
Bear Grylls (Mud, Sweat and Tears)
My phone rang at midnight, just as I was clearing my bed of the scissors and magazines and glue. It was Marlboro Man, who’d just returned to his home after processing 250 head of cattle in the dark of night. He just wanted to say good night. I would forever love that about him. “What’ve you been doing tonight?” he asked. His voice was scratchy. He sounded spent. “Oh, I just finished up my homework assignment,” I answered, rubbing my eyes and glancing at the collage on my bed. “Oh…good job,” he said. “I’ve got to go get some sleep so I can get over there and get after it in the morning…” His voice drifted off. Poor Marlboro Man--I felt so sorry for him. He had cows on one side, Father Johnson on the other, a wedding in less than a week, and a three-week vacation in another continent. The last thing he needed to do was flip through old issues of Seventeen magazine for pictures of lip gloss and Sun-In. The last thing he needed to deal with was Elmer’s glue. My mind raced, and my heart spoke up. “Hey, listen…,” I said, suddenly thinking of a brilliant idea. “I have an idea. Just sleep in tomorrow morning--you’re so tired…” “Nah, that’s okay,” he said. “I need to do the--” “I’ll do your collage for you!” I interrupted. It seemed like the perfect solution. Marlboro Man chuckled. “Ha--no way. I do my own homework around here.” “No, seriously!” I insisted. “I’ll do it--I have all the stuff here and I’m totally in the zone right now. I can whip it out in less than an hour, then we can both sleep till at least eight.” As if he’d ever slept till eight in his life. “Nah…I’ll be fine,” he said. “I’ll see you in the morning…” “But…but…,” I tried again. “Then I can sleep till at least eight.” “Good night…” Marlboro Man trailed off, probably asleep with his ear to the receiver. I made the command decision to ignore his protest and spent the next hour making his collage. I poured my whole heart and soul into it, delving deep and pulling out all the stops, marveling as I worked at how well I actually knew myself, and occasionally cracking up at the fact that I was doing Marlboro Man’s premarital homework for him--homework that was mandatory if we were to be married by this Episcopal priest. But on the outside chance Marlboro Man’s tired body was to accidentally oversleep, at least he wouldn’t have to walk in the door of Father Johnson’s study empty-handed.
Ree Drummond (The Pioneer Woman: Black Heels to Tractor Wheels)
My cold-weather gear left a lot to be desired: black maternity leggings under boot-cut maternity jeans, and a couple of Marlboro Man’s white T-shirts under an extra-large ASU sweatshirt. I was so happy to have something warm to wear that I didn’t even care that I was wearing the letters of my Pac-10 rival. Add Marlboro Man’s old lumberjack cap and mud boots that were four sizes too big and I was on my way to being a complete beauty queen. I seriously didn’t know how Marlboro Man would be able to keep his hands off of me. If I caught a glimpse of myself in the reflection of the feed truck, I’d shiver violently. But really, when it came right down to it, I didn’t care. No matter what I looked like, it just didn’t feel right sending Marlboro Man into the cold, lonely world day after day. Even though I was new at marriage, I still sensed that somehow--whether because of biology or societal conditioning or religious mandate or the position of the moon--it was I who was to be the cushion between Marlboro Man and the cruel, hard world. That it was I who’d needed to dust off his shoulders every day. And though he didn’t say it, I could tell that he felt better when I was bouncing along, chubby and carrying his child, in his feed truck next to him. Occasionally I’d hop out of the pickup and open gates. Other times he’d hop out and open them. Sometimes I’d drive while he threw hay off the back of the vehicles. Sometimes I’d get stuck and he’d say shit. Sometimes we’d just sit in silence, shivering as the vehicle doors opened and closed. Other times we’d engage in serious conversation or stop and make out in the snow. All the while, our gestating baby rested in the warmth of my body, blissfully unaware of all the work that awaited him on this ranch where his dad had grown up. As I accompanied Marlboro Man on those long, frigid mornings of work, I wondered if our child would ever know the fun of sledding on a golf course hill…or any hill, for that matter. I’d lived on the ranch for five months and didn’t remember ever hearing about anyone sledding…or playing golf…or participating in any recreational activities at all. I was just beginning to wrap my mind around the way daily life unfolded here: wake up early, get your work done, eat, relax, and go to bed. Repeat daily. There wasn’t a calendar of events or dinner dates with friends in town or really much room for recreation--because that just meant double the work when you got back to work. It was hard for me not to wonder when any of these people ever went out and had a good time, or built a snowman. Or slept past 5:00 A.M.
Ree Drummond (The Pioneer Woman: Black Heels to Tractor Wheels)
In the meantime, I tried my best to acclimate to my new life in the middle of nowhere. I had to get used to the fact that I lived twenty miles from the nearest grocery store. That I couldn’t just run next door when I ran out of eggs. That there was no such thing as sushi. Not that it would matter, anyway. No cowboy on the ranch would touch it. That’s bait, they’d say, laughing at any city person who would convince themselves that such a food was tasty. And the trash truck: there wasn’t one. In this strange new land, there was no infrastructure for dealing with trash. There were cows in my yard, and they pooped everywhere--on the porch, in the yard, even on my car if they happened to be walking near it when they dropped a load. There wasn’t a yard crew to clean it up. I wanted to hire people, but there were no people. The reality of my situation grew more crystal clear every day. One morning, after I choked down a bowl of cereal, I looked outside the window and saw a mountain lion siting on the hood of my car, licking his paws--likely, I imagined, after tearing a neighboring rancher’s wife from limb to limb and eating her for breakfast. I darted to the phone and called Marlboro Man, telling him there was a mountain lion sitting on my car. My heart beat inside my chest. I had no idea mountain lions were indigenous to the area. “It’s probably just a bobcat,” Marlboro Man reassured me. I didn’t believe him. “No way--it’s huge,” I cried. “It’s seriously got to be a mountain lion!” “I’ve gotta go,” he said. Cows mooed in the background. I hung up the phone, incredulous at Marlboro Man’s lack of concern, and banged on the window with the palm of my hand, hoping to scare the wild cat away. But it only looked up and stared at me through the window, imagining me on a plate with a side of pureed trout. My courtship with Marlboro Man, filled with fizzy romance, hadn’t prepared me for any of this; not the mice I heard scratching in the wall next to my bed, not the flat tires I got from driving my car up and down the jagged gravel roads. Before I got married, I didn’t know how to use a jack or a crowbar…and I didn’t want to have to learn now. I didn’t want to know that the smell in the laundry room was a dead rodent. I’d never smelled a dead rodent in my life: why, when I was supposed to be a young, euphoric newlywed, was I being forced to smell one now? During the day, I was cranky. At night, I was a mess. I hadn’t slept through the night once since we returned from our honeymoon. Besides the nausea, whose second evil wave typically hit right at bedtime, I was downright spooked. As I lay next to Marlboro Man, who slept like a baby every night, I thought of monsters and serial killers: Freddy Krueger and Michael Myers, Ted Bundy and Charles Manson. In the utter silence of the country, every tiny sound was amplified; I was certain if I let myself go to sleep, the murderer outside our window would get me.
Ree Drummond (The Pioneer Woman: Black Heels to Tractor Wheels)
That night, she was neglecting her pen in favor of rereading one of the most-favored books in her library. It was a small volume that had appeared mysteriously when she was only fifteen. Josephine still had no idea who had gifted her the lovely horror of Carmilla, but she owed her nameless benefactor an enormous debt. Her personal guess was a briefly employed footman who had seen her reading her mother’s well-worn copy of The Mysteries of Udolpho and confessed his own forbidden love of Poe. The slim volume of Le Fanu’s Gothic horror stories had been hidden well into adulthood. As it wasn’t her father’s habit to investigate her reading choices, concealment might have been more for dramatic effect than real fear of discovery. Josephine read by lamplight, curled into an old chaise and basking in the sweet isolation of darkness as she mouthed well-loved passages from her favorite vampire tale. “For some nights I slept profoundly; but still every morning I felt the same lassitude, and a languor weighed upon me all day. I felt myself a changed girl. A strange melancholy was stealing over me, a melancholy that I would not have interrupted. Dim thoughts of death began to open, and an idea that I was slowly sinking took gentle, and, somehow, not unwelcome possession of me.” She slammed the book shut. How had she turned so morbid? For while Josephine had long known she would not live to old age, she thought she had resigned herself to it. She made a point of fighting the melancholy that threatened her. If she had any regret, it was that she would not live long enough to write all the stories she wanted. Sometimes she felt a longing to shout them into the night, offering them up to any wandering soul that they might be heard so they could live. So many voices beating in her chest. So many tales to write and whisper and shout. Her eyes fell to the book she’d slammed shut. ‘“You are afraid to die?” “Yes, everyone is.” Josephine stood and pushed her way out of the glass house, into the garden where the mist enveloped her. She lifted her face to the moon and felt the tears cold on her cheeks. “‘ Girls are caterpillars,” she whispered, “‘ when they live in the world, to be finally butterflies when the summer comes; but in the meantime there are grubs and larvae, don’t you see?’” But the summer would never come for Josephine. She beat back the despair that threatened to envelop her. You are afraid to die? Yes, everyone is. She lifted her face and opened her eyes to the starry night, speaking her secret longing into the night. “‘ But to die as lovers may— to die together, so that they may live together.’” How she longed for love! For passion. How she ached to be seen. To be cherished. To be known. She could pour her soul onto the page and still find loneliness in the dark. She strangled her heart to keep it alive, knowing it was only a matter of time until the palest lover took her to his bosom. Already, she could feel the tightness in her chest. Tomorrow would not be a good day.
Elizabeth Hunter (Beneath a Waning Moon)
When I swung open the door, there he was: Marlboro Man, wearing Wranglers and a crisp white shirt and boots. And a sweet, heart-melting smile. What are you doing here? I thought. You’re supposed to be in the shower. You’re supposed to be with the sex kitten. “Hey,” he said, wasting no time in stepping through the door and winding his arms around my waist. My arms couldn’t help but drape over his strong shoulders; my lips couldn’t help but find his. He felt soft, warm, safe…and our first kiss turned into a third, and a sixth, and a seventh. It was the same kiss as the night before, when the phone call alerting him to the fire had come. My eyes remained tightly closed as I savored every second, trying to reconcile the present with the horror movie I’d imagined just moments earlier. I had no idea what was going on. At that point, I didn’t even care. “Ummmmm!!! I’m t-t-t-ttellin’!” Mike teased from the top of the stairs, just before running down and embracing Marlboro Man in a bear hug. “Hi, Mike,” Marlboro Man said, politely patting him on the back. “Mike?” I said, smiling and blinking my eyes. “Will you excuse us for a couple of minutes?” Mike obliged, giggling and oooo-ing as he walked toward the kitchen. Marlboro Man picked me up and brought my eyes to the level of his. Smiling, he said, “I’ve been trying to call you this afternoon.” “You have?” I said. I hadn’t even heard the phone ring. “I, um…I sort of took a nine-hour nap.” Marlboro Man chuckled. Oh, that chuckle. I needed it badly that night. He set my feet back down on the floor. “So…,” he teased. “You still cranky?” “Nope,” I finally answered, smiling. So, who is that woman in your house? So…what did you do all day? “Did you ever get any sleep?” So, who is that woman in your house? “Well,” he began. “I had to help Tim with something this morning, then I crashed on the couch for a few hours…it felt pretty good.” Who was the woman? What’s her name? What’s her cup size? He continued. “I would’ve slept all day, but Katie and her family showed up in the middle of my nap,” he said. “I forgot they were staying at my house tonight.” Katie. His cousin Katie. The one with the two young kids, who had probably just gone to bed when I’d called earlier. “Oh…really?” I said, my chest relaxing with a long, quiet exhale. “Yeah…but it’s a little crowded over there,” he said. “I thought I’d come over here and take you to a movie.” I smiled, stroking his back with my hand. “A movie sounds perfect.” The busty, bronze mystery girl slowly faded into oblivion. Mike came barreling out of the kitchen, where he’d been listening to every word. “Hey--if you guys are goin’ to the movie, c-c-c-can you drive me to the mall?” he yelled. “Sure, Mike,” Marlboro Man said. “We’ll drive you to the mall. It’ll cost you ten bucks, though.” And as the three of us made our way outside to Marlboro Man’s diesel pickup, I had to bite my lip to keep myself from articulating the only seven words in the English language that were in my vocabulary at that moment: God help me--I love that man.
Ree Drummond (The Pioneer Woman: Black Heels to Tractor Wheels)
129 Love Letter Not easy to state the change you made. If I’m alive now, then I was dead, Though, like a stone, unbothered by it, Staying put according to habit. You didn’t just toe me an inch, no— Nor leave me to set my small bald eye Skyward again, without hope, of course, Of apprehending blueness, or stars. That wasn’t it. I slept, say: a snake Masked among black rocks as a black rock In the white hiatus of winter— Like my neighbors, taking no pleasure In the million perfectly-chiseled Cheeks alighting each moment to melt My cheek of basalt. They turned to tears, Angels weeping over dull natures, But didn’t convince me. Those tears froze. Each dead head had a visor of ice. And I slept on like a bent finger. The first thing I saw was sheer air And the locked drops rising in a dew Limpid as spirits. Many stones lay Dense and expressionless round about. I didn’t know what to make of it. I shone, mica-scaled, and unfolded To pour myself out like a fluid Among bird feet and the stems of plants. I wasn’t fooled. I knew you at once. Tree and stone glittered, without shadows. My finger-length grew lucent as glass. I started to bud like a March twig: An arm and a leg, an arm, a leg. From stone to cloud, so I ascended. Now I resemble a sort of god Floating through the air in my soul-shift Pure as a pane of ice. It’s a gift. 16 October 1960
Sylvia Plath (The Collected Poems)
I had this thing I did to help calm myself at night. I’d lie on my back, tuck the covers around me just so and imagine that I was in a small boat. I would conjure a lake so big that I couldn’t see the shore and the sky would be an overturned bowl above me, black, moonless and full of winking fairy lights for stars. There would be no wind, but my boat would carry me across the smooth, dark waters. The only sound would be the lazy slap of water against the side of the boat. This calmed me somehow and I could close my eyes and rest. Because I was only sixteen when I got to prison, I was separated from the general population until I turned eighteen. After surviving the first terrible weeks, I suddenly realized that I didn’t need my boat anymore and I slept just fine.
Heather Gudenkauf (These Things Hidden)
I went to bed that night in a kind of daze, slept as if I had been drugged and in the morning awoke to a new world—a world of excitement—a world in which everything was fierce and piercing, everything charged with strange emotions, clothed with extraordinary mysteries, and in which I myself seemed to exist only as an inner core of palpitating fire.
Dorothy Strachey (Olivia)
I woke up earlier that day in Seattle, and the first thought that crossed my mind wasn't about workouts or practice or preseason. I found myself wondering if Molly drank coffee. If she was a morning person or a night owl. If she slept sprawled across her bed like I did mine. And how tonight, I'd go to bed under the same roof as her.
Karla Sorensen (Focused (Ward Sisters, #1))
He sits up. ‘Oh, Jesus. I have not slept all night. Why was Mark screaming?’ The boy laughs. ‘We locked him in with Christmas. I thought of it, myself. You remember when I first saw the star in its sleeves? I said, master, what is that machine that is all over points? I thought it was an engine for torture. Well, it is dark in Christmas. He fell against the star and it impaled him. Then the peacock wings came out of their shroud and brushed his face with fingers. And he thought a phantom was shut up with him in the dark.
Hilary Mantel (Bring Up the Bodies (Thomas Cromwell, #2))
Being part of a team that belongs to everyone makes me feel good and at peace with myself. It relaxes me. A lot of the time, it’s better than sex: it lasts longer and if it all falls flat, it can’t just be your fault. Take someone like Antonio Cassano. He says he’s slept with 700 women in his time, but he doesn’t get picked for Italy any more. Deep down, can he really be happy? I certainly wouldn’t be. That second skin, with its smurf-like blue, gives you a whole new image across the world. It makes you better, takes you to a higher level. Much better to be a soldier on the pitch than in the bedroom.
Andrea Pirlo (Penso quindi gioco)
I shouldn’t have slept with Dylan. It had the potential to ruin everything between us, and yet, I can’t bring myself to regret it. I could try to tell myself it was meaningless, but there was an undeniable connection.
Katherine Jay (When Nothing Else Matters (Heartstrings, #1))
But the bed I made up for myself was sufficiently uncomfortable to give me a wakeful night, and I thought a good deal of what the unlucky Dutchman had told me.I was not so much puzzled by Blanche Stroeve’s action, for I saw in that merely the result of a physical appeal. I do not suppose she had ever really cared for her husband, and what I had taken for love was no more than the feminine response to caresses and comfort which in the minds of most women passes for it. It is a passive feeling capable of being roused for any object, as the vine can grow on any tree; and the wisdom of the world recognizes its strength when it urges a girl to marry the man who wants her with the assurance that love will follow. It is an emotion made up of the satisfaction in security, pride of property, the pleasure of being desired, the gratification of a household, and it is only by an amiable vanity that women ascribe to its spiritual value. It is an emotion which is defenceless against passion. I suspected that Blanche Stroeve's violent dislike of Strickland had in it from the beginning a vague element of sexual attraction. Who am I that I should seek to unravel the mysterious intricacies of sex? Perhaps Stroeve's passion excited without satisfying that part of her nature, and she hated Strickland because she felt in him the power to give her what she needed.I think she was quite sincere when she struggled against her husband's desire to bring him into the studio; I think she was frightened of him, though she knew not why; and I remembered how she had foreseen disaster. I think in some curious way the horror which she felt for him was a transference of the horror which she felt for herself because he so strangely troubled her. His appearance was wild and uncouth; there was aloofiness in his eyes and sensuality in his mouth; he was big and strong; he gave the impression of untamed passion; and perhaps she felt in him, too, that sinister element which had made me think of those wild beings of the world's early history when matter, retaining its early connection with the earth, seemed to possess yet a spirit of its own. lf he affected her at all. it was inevitable that she should love or hate him. She hated him. And then I fancy that the daily intimacy with the sick man moved her strangely. She raised his head to give him food, and it was heavy against her hand; when she had fed him she wiped his sensual mouth and his red beard.She washed his limbs; they were covered with thick hair; and when she dried his hands, even in his weakness they were strong and sinewy. His fingers were long; they were the capable, fashioning fingers of the artist; and I know not what troubling thoughts they excited in her. He slept very quietly, without movement, so that he might have been dead, and he was like some wild creature of the woods, resting after a long chase; and she wondered what fancies passed through his dreams. Did he dream of the nymph flying through the woods of Greece with the satyr in hot pursuit? She fled, swift of foot and desperate, but he gained on her step by step, till she felt his hot breath on her neck; and still she fled silently. and silently he pursued, and when at last he seized her was it terror that thrilled her heart or was it ecstasy? Blanche Stroeve was in the cruel grip of appetite. Perhaps she hated Strickland still, but she hungered for him, and everything that had made up her life till then became of no account. She ceased to be a woman, complex, kind, and petulant, considerate and thoughtless; she was a Maenad. She was desire.
W. Somerset Maugham
But eating her hair was nothing more than a slightly creepy last-ditch effort on my part to try and absolve myself from all the guilt. I dreamt that swallowing a piece of her hair tethered us together somehow, eliminating any fear that we might someday grow apart because of everything that happened. So, when I woke up, I plucked a strand from her head while she slept and put it in my mouth.
Colleen Hoover (Layla)
When I slept, I thought about Llywelyn. And the first thoughts I had as I woke were of Llywelyn too. I couldn’t stop thinking about him, and it was starting to scare me. But I also couldn’t stop thinking about this little village, and when I checked my phone for the time and saw yet another missed call from my boss I wanted to cry, or shrivel up into a ball or… Or never leave. I knew it sounded stupid, even in my head. But I had found myself enjoying my time in Hiraeth more than I thought possible.
C.J. Matthewson (Handy Man (West Wales Romance #1))
As an activist myself, I’ve been all over the place the last few years, taking stock of what’s been going on and advocating for change. I’ve marched, organized, and agitated; slept in tents on the path of pipelines with snipers in the distant hills; been arrested for civil disobedience on one of the largest bridges in New York City; and seen tanks rolling down more than one street—under two different presidential administrations. It’s all given me so many reasons for despair, but also for hope.
Sarah Lyons (Revolutionary Witchcraft: A Guide to Magical Activism)
When a man is asleep, he has in a circle round him the chain of the hours, the sequence of the years, the order of the heavenly host. Instinctively, when he awakes, he looks to these, and in an instant reads off his own position on the earth’s surface and the amount of time that has elapsed during his slumbers; but this ordered procession is apt to grow confused, and to break its ranks. Suppose that, towards, morning, after a night of insomnia, sleep descends upon him while he is reading, in quite a different position from that in which he normally goes to sleep, he has only to lift his arm to arrest the sun and turn it back in its course, and, at the moment of waking, he will have no idea of the time, but will conclude that he has just gone to bed. Or suppose that he gets drowsy in some even more abnormal position; sitting in an armchair, say, after dinner: then the world will go hurtling out of orbit, the magic chair will carry him at full speed through time and space, and when he opens his eyes again he will imagine that he went to sleep months earlier in another place. But for me it was enough if, in my own bed, my sleep was so heavy as completely to relax my consciousness; for then I lost all sense of the place in which I had gone to sleep, and when I awoke in the middle of the night, not knowing where I was, I could not even be sure at first who I was; I had only the most rudimentary sense of existence, such as may lurk and flicker in the depths of an animal's consciousness; I was more destitute than the cave-dweller; but then the memory - not yet of the place in which I was, but of various other places where I had lived and might now very possibly be - would come like a rope let down from heaven to draw me up out of the abyss of not-being, from which I could never have escaped by myself: in a flash I would traverse centuries of civilisation, and out of a blurred glimpse of oil-lamps, then of shirts with turned-down collars, would gradually piece together the original components of my ego. Perhaps the immobility of the things that surround us is forced upon them by our conviction that they are themselves and not anything else, by the immobility of our conception of them. For it always happened that when I awoke like this, and my mind struggled in an unsuccessful attempt to discover where I was, everything revolved around me through the darkness: things, places, years. My body, still too heavy with sleep to move, would endeavour to construe from the pattern of its tiredness the position of its various limbs, in order to deduce therefrom the direction of the wall, the location of the furniture, to piece together and give a name to the house in which it lay. Its memory, the composite memory of its ribs, its knees, its shoulder-blades, offered it a whole series of rooms in which it had at one time or another slept, while the unseen walls, shifting and adapting themselves to the shape of each successive room that it remembered, whirled round it in the dark.
Marcel Proust (Swann's Way)
What my dad did was wrong, awful, inexcusable, but maybe there's still hope for him. Maybe if he can get the help he needs, they'll be able to resurrect the man who taught me about Bach's toccata and slept in the chair in my room when I was afraid of the dark. And if there's still hope for my dad, there has to still be hope for me. Mabe it's true that he and I have the same black slug inside of us, but it's up to me to conquer it. I owe that to my dad. I owe that to myself. [....] I make a promise to myself: /I will be stronger than my sadness./ I will do my best to become the girl from Roman's drawing. The girl with the bright eyes. The girl with hope.
Jasmine Warga (My Heart and Other Black Holes)
All of this happened around the time I’d fallen in love with one of the VanHoebeek daughters, or rather with her portrait, which I called Julia. Julia had narrow shoulders and yellow hair held back by a green ribbon. Her portrait hung in a bedroom on the third floor of the Dutch House above a bed no one ever slept in. With the exception of Sandy, who ran the vacuum and wiped things down with a dust rag on Thursdays, no one but me set foot up there. I believed that Julia and I were true lovers thwarted by the misalignment of our births. I worked myself into such a state over the injustice of it all that I once made the error of calling my sister at Barnard to ask if she had ever wondered about the girl whose painting hung in the third-floor bedroom, the girl with the gray-green eyes who was one of the VanHoebeek daughters
Ann Patchett (The Dutch House)
I rigged an election trying to be Golden. I spent sixteen years with my head in a toilet trying to be light. I drank myself numb for a decade, trying to be pleasant. I've giggled at and slept with assholes, trying to be touchable. I've held my tongue so hard I tasted blood, trying to be gentle. I've spent thousands on potions and poisons, trying to be youthful. I have denied myself for decades, trying to be pure.
Glennon Doyle (Untamed)
In my fantasy, I always strangled them as they slept. I don’t know why, but it seemed the most humane way. I knew from my earliest sexual awakenings that I was gay. I was always attracted to men and never really questioned why. I just accepted the fact that I liked men and not women. I was raised Lutheran, and I knew the faith frowned on gays. I saw that openly gay people could have a tough time of it, so I decided to keep this my little secret. This wasn’t hard, since I kept most thoughts to myself. “I don’t know why, but my fantasies always included cutting into the dead bodies of my lovers. I sliced their torso from chin to crotch and pulled out their inner viscera, laying it on their chest. The thought of the warm inner cavity excited me tremendously, and I masturbated thinking about it. The orgasm was always pleasurable and intense. I’m not sure, but I think this was an extension of something I got involved in as a kid. When I was lonely or when my mom and dad fought, I walked the country roads by my house in Bath. I noticed that occasionally there were dead animals along the roadside, hit by cars. I was interested in what they looked like on the inside. At first, I brought them home and cut them up, examining their insides, not telling anyone. But the more interested I became, the less pleasure I got from just cutting into them. “The inner workings of these creatures fascinated me and I wanted to preserve their bones. I remember that I talked to Dad about my interest. I told him that I would like to preserve the bones in some way for future study. Dad was a chemist and knew all about chemicals that could clean off the dead skin. I wanted to sterilize the bones so they could be handled safely. I actually think he was proud of my interest. He helped me by providing various solutions, and even helped me build a little cemetery along the side of our garage to bury my experiments after I was finished studying them. This phase of finding dead animals along the road lasted until I was about fourteen. I actually had the complete set of bones from a large dog I found dead along the side of the road. It was a beagle, and I severed all the flesh from its body, cleaned and polished the bones with various solutions, and reassembled the animal on a large piece of wood. It was just like something in a museum.
Patrick Kennedy (GRILLING DAHMER: The Interrogation Of "The Milwaukee Cannibal")
Actually, it wasn't the idea of Buddy sleeping with somebody that bothered me. I mean I'd read about all sorts of people sleeping with each other, and if it had been any other boy I would merely have asked him the most interesting details, and maybe gone out and slept with somebody myself just to even things up, and then thought no more about it.
Sylvia Plath (The Bell Jar)
soldiers, the other half by Polish civilians from the camps and other places. Russian nurses and medics brought the wounded, presenting with every type of injury imaginable, in on canvas stretchers. “We’re off to Warsaw soon,” said Karolina Uznetsky, one of my favorite nurses, as she unfolded a cot. “The army is taking over the hospital.” She filled a basin with warm water. “I’ll miss you all,” I said, instead of what I really wanted to say: Please stay. You leave, and who will be here when Pietrik comes back? Leaving means you’ve given up on survivors. “How about a free class on the bed bath?” Karolina said. “Yes, please,” I said. Such an opportunity! The bed bath was known to be more complicated than it sounded. “Let us start over here,” Karolina said. She carried a basin of water and a stack of towels straight toward a particularly damaged row of soldiers. The facial injuries were the hardest to deal with. They’d taken the mirrors in the lavatories down for a reason. I forced myself to look. How could I be a nurse if I couldn’t deal with such things? Suddenly I could not recall even basic Red Cross training. Karolina stood at the cot of one of the worst, a dark-haired man who slept curled on his side. The blood that had seeped through the gauze wrapped around his head had dried black. “First, introduce yourself to the patient,” Karolina said, indicating the man on the cot. “We can skip this step, for the patient is unresponsive.” It would not be exaggeration to say I idolized
Martha Hall Kelly (Lilac Girls (Lilac Girls, #1))
Got one!” cried Katz. “Me, too,” I said, rather proudly. Katz was scrabbling around on his hands and knees, as if trying to pass for a mouse himself, enlivening the dark with a flying flashlight beam and pausing from time to time to hurl a boot or bang down his water bottle. Then he would crawl back in his bag, be still for a time, curse abruptly, fling off encumbrances, and repeat the process. I buried myself in my bag and pulled the drawstring tight over my head. And thus passed the night, with repeated sequences of Katz being violent, followed by silence, followed by scamperings, followed by Katz being violent. I slept surprisingly well, all things considered.
Bill Bryson (A Walk in the Woods: Rediscovering America on the Appalachian Trail)
Poem - Freedom XCIII From the divine orgy The suicidal came But what gods would Be? If not ashes From a forgotten Fenix “I believed in the love Of a fallen angel And as an ashen maggot Which crawls on Christ’s Dirty wounds He stabbed me But the Devil laughed And danced by my side He showed me his helping hand So I could live another day Depression probed me On the house’s dark corners And every time The Devil slept She would come to torment me I screamed and cried in despair But no god could hear me (…) The anxiety would proclaim curses That not even Judas would dare; Bent in my knees With antidepressants in my hands I threw myself at an abysm of a Insanity overdose I crossed the same path as Christ Where he carried the human’s cross And I found him hanged In a tree of lies With a note at his feet- Dance with me And I’ll give you the strength to keep going- Believe in the beast which lives Inside the men And light in you the morning star’s light I got up Drowning in my own blood And proclaimed My scream of freedom- of love! I only want orgies! – From gods I only want the human corruption The deaf depression Which crawled in my disgusting dreams As I proclaimed In front of the mirror of life My desire to live And without noticing She put a rope around my neck… I feel my body struggling In a deep despair Today I die! But I’ll tell Christ That his sons did not honored his suicide Today! I die for myself When the pigs grunt And the wolves howl I’ll be free from life! Which I was condemned to live - Gerson De Rodrigues
Gerson De Rodrigues (Poesias & Maldições Vol.1)
dawn. Slimy was already awake, bouncing around in his crib. I took him out and played with them a little bit and gave him a few pieces of bread to eat. After he ate them he said, “Beep. Boop. In-ston.” I snapped my head at him. “Did you just say Winston? Winston?” Slimy giggled. “In-ston. In-ston.” I picked up Slimy and gave him a big hug. “You are learning to talk! Good for you.” Slimy laughed and then his eyelids became heavy and he fell asleep in my arms. I never knew how much slimes slept or how quickly they could fall asleep. I put Slimy back in his crib and then went downstairs to eat breakfast in the dining area. When I arrived at the dining area, I looked around for Wolf, but he was nowhere to be seen. I  sat down at a table by myself. When the waiter came over, I asked, “Have you seen any other wandering traders in here this morning?” The waiter, who looked incredibly bored, shook his head. “No. In fact, you are only the fourth person to come in this morning. It is still pretty early.
Dr. Block (The Ballad of Winston the Wandering Trader: Book 2 (The Ballad of Winston #2))
I will constrain no man by force, for faith must come freely without compulsion. Take myself as an example. I opposed indulgences and all the papists, but never with force. I simply taught, preached, and wrote God’s Word; otherwise I did nothing. And while I slept, or drank Wittenberg beer with my friends Philip and Amsdorf, the Word so greatly weakened the papacy that no prince or emperor ever inflicted such losses upon it. I did nothing; the Word did everything.
Michael Reeves (The Unquenchable Flame)
Who doesn’t like to be a center for concern? A kind of second childhood falls on so many men. They trade their violence for the promise of a small increase of life span. In effect, the head of the house becomes the youngest child. And I have searched myself for this possibility with a kind of horror. For I have always lived violently, drunk hugely, eaten too much or not at all, slept around the clock or missed two nights of sleeping, worked too hard and too long in glory, or slobbed for a time in utter laziness. I’ve lifted, pulled, chopped, climbed, made love with joy and taken my hangovers as a consequence, not as a punishment. I did not want to surrender fierceness for a small gain in yardage. My wife married a man; I saw no reason why she should inherit a baby. I knew that ten or twelve thousand miles driving a truck, alone and unattended, over every kind of road, would be hard work, but to me it represented the antidote for the poison of the professional sick man. And in my own life I am not willing to trade quality for quantity. If this projected journey should prove too much then it was time to go anyway. I see too many men delay their exits with a sickly, slow reluctance to leave the stage. It’s bad theater as well as bad living. I am very fortunate in having a wife who likes being a woman, which means that she likes men, not elderly babies. Although this last foundation for the journey was never discussed, I am sure she understood it.
John Steinbeck (Travels with Charley in Search of America)
He would handcuff me to the one murky lone bed in that room; spread out naked as the day I was born. As you could imagine looking just like a starfish stuck on the side of a rock, yet strapped down with his belts, ropes, and his dirty underwear in my mouth so that I would not scream for help, up until then there was no one around for miles, to hear me anyway, as I would scream bloody murder. My voice would echo back through the trees at me, as it seemed, and he would cackle ruthlessly. All that was on my face! Just like his offensive nasty hot sweat from his brow, that would land on my chest and drip down my belly down me, as I got ever more repulsed, by his actions, that he was doing to me. Yet, I was seeing, feeling, and tasting it all. At all those moments in time, I felt it all. At night, he would chain me to a tree outside, with only a doghouse to sleep in and yes, I was completely nude, while he slept inside the cabin on that same filthy bed I was on, and no he did not see the need in cleaning up at all. I could not sleep from what he did, and also the fear I would not wake up the next day, and also my skin was crawling because of all the fire ants, centipedes, and worms engulfing me. Affirmatively, I had bugs in places, which a girl never wants any bug to go into, or scuttle around. I remember that I would sketch the days in the wood of the rusty red doghouse with a rock. I was there for three or more weeks, without a bath, clothing, and real food, without anyone knowing, that I was being used as nothing more than a plaything, just like a dog’s chew toy. I found myself wanting and longing to eat the bugs, which were on me, just to stay alive.
Marcel Ray Duriez (Nevaeh Struggle with Affections)
That’s what you think, my dear. You think a lot of men want to sleep with me. I used to think that myself.” Her voice alters. “Bloody little fool that I was. Men don’t want to sleep with me, they want to have slept with me.
Alison Lurie (Foreign Affairs)
I've never slept with a girl. I couldn't. I wouldn't want to. That's abnormal and I'm not, although you can't be normal unless you do what you want and you can't be normal unless you love men. To do what I wanted would be normal, unless what I wanted was abnormal, in which case it would be abnormal to please myself and normal to do what I didn't want to do, which isn't normal.
Joanna Russ (The Female Man)
I despised myself for my weakness. I may have dreamed all my youth of life as a horse-trader like my father; I may have railed against my conscription and loathed the legions on principle, but even so, every morning in this place I cursed my lack of valour and every night, when I slept, my traitorous mind brought me dreams drenched in the blood of our enemies as my comrades in the Vth launched themselves into battle, taking risks, winning glory, rising in the ranks, killing the enemy and so becoming men...all without my being there. The fact that it was winter, when the weather forced a kind of peace on both sides, and that my comrades were currently enduring endless forced marches over the mountains in western Armenia because their general had deemed them unfit for battle, did nothing to hamper my fantasies.
M.C. Scott (Rome: The Eagle of the Twelfth (Rome, #3))
I slept. I dreamed. It was that dream again, that dream that I was kissing someone. When I woke, I wanted to touch myself. “Shaking hands with your best friend.” That was Dante’s euphemism. He always smiled when he said that. I took a cold shower instead.
You’re the most gorgeous thing I’ve looked at all morning.” “Obviously you are still heavily medicated,” he replied dryly, “because I drank myself to sleep last night and slept in my clothes.
Mila Rossi (Fast Times)
Cradle My Heart Last night, I was lying on the rooftop, thinking of you. I saw a special Star, and summoned her to take you a message. I prostrated myself to the Star and asked her to take my prostration to that Sun of Tabriz so that with his light, he can turn my dark stones into gold. I opened my chest and showed her my scars, I told her to bring me news of my bloodthirsty Lover. As I waited, I paced back and forth, until the child of my heart became quiet. The child slept, as if I were rocking his cradle. Oh Beloved, give milk to the infant of the heart, and don't hold us from our turning. You have cared for hundreds, don't let it stop with me now. At the end, the town of unity is the place for the heart.
Entertaining Possibilities "Why sometimes I've believed as many as six impossible things before breakfast." - The Queen of Hearts, Alice in Wonderland riding bareback on a triceratops through green galaxies while you ride beside me on your favorite mastodon running a finger over those I love and like a highlighter pen turning them neon noting them forever so I can return to them easily when I need them thinking something good can come of "ethnic cleansing" swimming in an ocean deep and wet enough to fill the eternity of love between these two sheets walking into the vowels of a word like open and becoming it locking away Pandora's box putting evil back in its place for good and swallowing the key lighting myself with a single match then watching me melt warm and liquid over your body cooling gently in the shape of you sitting flat in round anticipation I will be page 233 in the book that you have just opened and I will chew on each delicious moment of every turn as you move page by page closer to me stowing away in your pillowcase and sailing your dreams so that when you are sent to walk the plank I can catch you together we can be the mutiny on any bounty letting my best ideas ripen beside yours on the vine then stomping it all juicy between toes yours and mine aging then bottling it all till the sun falls and we uncork our store one by one and drink forever in the twilight planting a memory watering the spot watching it grow tall, tender, familiar, then putting my ear to its blossom and hearing my grandmother's voice tell me again that I can be both the gift and the giver
Nancy Boutilier (On the Eighth Day Adam Slept Alone: New Poems)
After dinner Marlboro Man and I sat on the sofa in our dimly lit house and marveled at the new little life before us. Her sweet little grunts…her impossibly tiny ears…how peacefully she slept, wrinkled and warm, in front of us. We unwrapped her from her tight swaddle, then wrapped her again. Then we unwrapped her and changed her diaper, then wrapped her again. Then we put her in the crib for the night, patted her sweet belly, and went to bed ourselves, where we fell dead asleep in each other’s arms, blissful that the hard part was behind us. A full night’s sleep was all I needed, I reckoned, before I felt like myself again. The sun would come out tomorrow…I was sure of it. We were sleeping soundly when I heard the baby crying twenty minutes later. I shot out of bed and went to her room. She must be hungry, I thought, and fed her in the glider rocking chair before putting her in her crib and going back to bed myself. Forty-five minutes after my head hit the pillow, I was awakened again to the sound of crying. Looking at the clock, I was sure I was having a bad dream. Bleary-eyed, I stumbled to her room again and repeated the feeding ritual. Hmmm, I thought as I tried to keep from nodding off in the chair. This is strange. She must have some sort of problem, I imagined--maybe that cowlick or colic I’d heard about in a movie somewhere? Goiter or gouter or gout? Strange diagnoses pummeled my sleep-deprived brain. Before the sun came up, I’d gotten up six more times, each time thinking it had to be the last, and if it wasn’t, it might actually kill me. I woke up the next morning, the blinding sun shining in my eyes. Marlboro Man was walking in our room, holding our baby girl, who was crying hysterically in his arms. “I tried to let you sleep,” he said. “But she’s not having it.” He looked helpless, like a man completely out of options. My eyes would hardly open. “Here.” I reached out, motioning Marlboro Man to place the little suckling in the warm spot on the bed beside me. Eyes still closed, I went into autopilot mode, unbuttoning my pajama top and moving my breast toward her face, not caring one bit that Marlboro Man was standing there watching me. The baby found what she wanted and went to town. Marlboro Man sat on the bed and played with my hair. “You didn’t get much sleep,” he said. “Yeah,” I said, completely unaware that what had happened the night before had been completely normal…and was going to happen again every night for the next month at least. “She must not have been feeling great.
Ree Drummond (The Pioneer Woman: Black Heels to Tractor Wheels)
From everything she’d told me that evening, it was clear that if we were going to move forward, then I was going to have to become a well-functioning, fully autonomous man. Or, as I discovered during our laundry fiasco a few months earlier, I was going to have to become an adult. She had been right after all; this was not going to be easy. Kristen fell asleep not long after we finished talking. I didn’t want to go to bed without a plan for turning things around once and for all, so while she slept, I analyzed my notes in an attempt to extract some kind of strategy:   —Respect Kristen’s personal time and space. —Be more involved with the kids. —Manage yourself and your emotions—Kristen shouldn’t have to do that. —Have fun while we do things rather than making everything a “drama fest.”   The single unifying concept seemed to be: Kristen and the kids need you to be able to manage yourself by yourself. Sitting on the bed, with Kristen sound asleep, I once again found myself with a worthy goal and no idea how to define the first step toward achieving it. I was ready to call it a night when one of my notes leaped out at me from the page: Help lighten her burden by showing initiative once in a while. There it was. I realized that if I could take initiative when it came to things like stabilizing my moods then Kristen would be able to go about her day without having to worry about what might set me off. With a sense of initiative, I might actually vacuum once in a while or take the kids to the grocery store so that Kristen could enjoy some downtime—downtime that would be sweetened by the fact that she didn’t have to ask for it. Initiative could make me seem more empathic.
David Finch (The Journal of Best Practices: A Memoir of Marriage, Asperger Syndrome, and One Man's Quest to Be a Better Husband)
Sitting here thinking to myself, how could I let this happen to me? The only man that I could ever love lied to me and broke my heart. He took my money, led me on, slept with my best friend, and left me to die. Now, I’m here all alone with our child in my stomach thinking, should I kill it or let a piece of the man I hate with all my soul, live with me for the rest of my life? My name is Ashanti Knight and this is my story.
Damecia Towns (Pain)
You’re trying to explain the teeth, right?”  I sounded pathetic, like a child who needed reassurance.  I tried not to fidget on top of that. He gave me the reassurance I needed in one of his rare nods. Okay.  No kissing.  Just him moving closer.  He slept at the foot of my bed every night.  That was pretty close—right on my feet—and no big deal.  But he had fur on when he did that.  Now he looked... I eyed him again.  My stomach did a funny flip.  Maybe my fear wasn’t about his reaction, but mine.  I was afraid I’d forget myself.  I needed his control.  I took a deep breath. “It’s okay then.  Go ahead, explain.  I’ll behave,” I promised quietly.  I saw his mustache twitch with a quick smile.  The canines explained some of the facial hair, but the full-bearded, crazy-man look seemed overkill. After a slight hesitation, he leaned forward again while keeping his hands loose at his sides.  I pushed back the fear and held still.  He didn’t stop his slow approach until his whiskers tickled the side of my neck and collarbone.  There he paused and inhaled deeply. As soon as he inhaled, I knew what he was doing, and although I didn’t move, fear blossomed.  Heart pounding, eyes wide, I waited for him to finish scenting me as a werewolf would a potential Mate, not a distant inhale, but an up-close sample of my scent, infinitely more potent.  His warm exhale sent goose bumps skittering over my arms.  I braced myself, anticipating some type of slip in his highly-praised control.  He leisurely inhaled once more then lifted his head, exhaling as he went. With his face only inches from mine, he opened his mouth to display his teeth again.  The canines had grown even more pronounced, the surrounding gums swollen from their thickness. I didn’t know what to say.  He had canines when in his human form because of me. “So, when you’re around me, they’re worse?  I guess that means they’re like that all the time.” He shrugged and casually took a step back.  I was unsure what the shrug meant. We
Melissa Haag (Hope(less) (Judgement of the Six #1))
It did rain again, of course, but never the same strange rain as that night. I slept scant hours each night, and then only from utter exhaustion. I fought sleep, because it was my enemy. I knew I would never forgive myself if the moment I nodded off turned out to be the precise moment the special rain began falling.
Bobby Underwood (The Memory of Rain)
I guess I am a bit of a ‘serial dater’. I haven’t slept with every guy I’ve had an inkling about, but she is right. I need to respect myself a little more and be practical about who I decide to spend my time with.
Kate Stewart (The Guy on the Right (The Underdogs, #1))
I go into the bathroom, splash my face with water, and stare at my reflection in the mirror. I point at myself, narrowing my eyes. “You’re going to go out there and feck the shit out of her. So hard she won’t remember what day it is. What year it is. What Shiny ex-Boyfriend’s name is. But this time, you’re going to be cool about it. You need to screw her like you don’t want to screw her. You’re going to--” “Mal?” she calls from the outside. I stop dead, my eyes widening. “The walls are kind of thin, and anyway, I’ve slept with you before. I know you can deliver the goods.
L.J. Shen (In the Unlikely Event)
I remember thinking that this bed, at last, seemed very firm, and then I was blinking at the bedside clock that told me it was eleven-fifty-three. That didn’t seem possible. It had been well after midnight when I fell onto the bed. How could it be seven minutes before now? I closed my eyes again and tried to think, which was even harder than it had been lately. For just a moment I thought I must have slept backward through time, finally arriving here in bed before I actually got here. I spent a few pleasant moments thinking of what I should say to myself when I saw me walk in the door. But then I opened my eyes again, and noticed a bright edge of light showing around the bottom of the heavy curtains, and I thought, Aha. It’s daytime. I slept through the night, and lo! The sun has riz. That explains everything. Still, a little disappointing. I’d been hoping for a really interesting conversation with someone I knew to be a brilliant conversationalist—Me.
Jeff Lindsay (Dexter Is Dead (Dexter, #8))
I could just go out and sleep with a random guy, but that would be wrong. Even though Hassan and I have not exactly discussed exclusivity, I wouldn’t do that to him; he means more to me than that. Since when did I become one of those women? Could it be that I’m finally growing up? Could it be because my friends are always telling me that I’m living a life that is wrong? Could it be because I had a stalker, a whack job who’s man I slept with and she came after me all crazy and intimidating? Maybe it’s a combination of all of these events. I’m starting to think that my outlook on life is changing. I’m not ready to run down the aisle or have children, but I am opening myself up to love, loving someone and letting someone love me in return.
J.A. Heron (GirlsQuad (A Best of Friends Series: Book One))
already put me in quite a position. ‘I’ve put you in a position? Just give me the damned divorce and let’s have done with it.’ Before he could answer there was a rustling just inside the house, and our houseboy, Barasa, came onto the veranda, ducking his head to show us he’d not meant to disturb us. ‘Does bwana want the evening meal served here?’ ‘No, in the house, Barasa. We’ll be in directly.’ When the boy had gone, Jock looked at me pointedly. ‘What?’ I asked. ‘The servants won’t tell tales.’ ‘No,’ he said. ‘Usually not. But they always know the score, don’t they?’ ‘I don’t care what anyone knows.’ ‘Maybe not, but you should.’ We ate our meal in strained silence, all of the furniture seeming to lean heavily in from the walls. The servants were very quiet as they came and went, and it was awful to sit there, wanting to scream but saying nothing. Jock was terrified I was going to embarrass him – or embarrass him further. That was all he seemed to think of now as he flexed and cautioned me, running thick strands of wire around the charade of our life together. He’d always been good at fences. I had known that from the beginning, but I hadn’t guessed how desperate I could feel bound up inside one. When I could finally excuse myself to the small guest bedroom where I was sleeping, I felt chapped and raw and prodded at. I barely slept at all that night, and the next morning, though I generally stayed for lunch, I bolted for the wagon at first light.   Back at Soysambu, Jock’s warnings and expectations continued to wear on me, but only in weak moments, when I let myself think of him.
Paula McLain (Circling the Sun)
thought about Matt briefly, and a feeling of guilt swept through me. I hadn’t even slept with him yet, but here I was, giving myself to Brandon. A man I hadn’t seen in seven years. “Oh yes,” Brandon grunted as his body started shuddering. “Oh, yes.” His
J.S. Cooper (The Ex Games (The Ex Games, #1))
In a few years he will graduate and pave his way, alone and unprotected. But I remind myself that he has a father who is still living, a mother who is happy and strong. Whenever he is discouraged, I tell him that if I can survive on three continents, then there is no obstacle he can not conquer. While the astronauts, heroes forever, spent mere hours on the moon, I have remained in this new world for nearly thirty years. I know that my achievement is quite ordinary. I am not the only man to seek his fortune far from home, and certainly I am not the first. Still, there are times I am bewildered by each mile I have traveled, each meal I have eaten, each person I have known, each room in which I have slept. As ordinary as it all appears, there are times when it is beyond my imagination.
Last night you slept alone because you’d had a hell of a day and I’d promised myself I’d keep you safe. When I get back today, I can take you home, I can take you to a friend’s, or you can stay here.” His gaze slid over her like a lover’s touch. “But you won’t sleep alone.” His husky voice was almost hypnotic. “And I can’t guarantee you’ll get much sleep.
Jennifer LaBrecque (The Big Heat (Big, Bad Bounty Hunters, #2))
snuck into Abby’s room first. I smiled upon seeing her pink, star-shaped night light and the way she was clinging to her stuffed animal, Colin. At her age, she still sucked her thumb when she slept. I approached her bed and twisted a tendril of her blonde hair with my forefinger. “I’ll miss you, dwarfette.” I kicked myself for being so dramatic. It wasn’t like the hunters were going to take me captive and keep me from ever seeing my family again, but I knew that the choice I was making was going to break my family’s heart. My next stop was my parents’ bedroom. I snuck a peek at them cuddled in their bed, a reminder of how in love they still were with each other after all those years—something I felt I could never have now that Sofia had left me. I slipped through the door and snuck inside the room, careful to be as quiet as I possibly could. I saw my dad’s car keys above their drawers and took them. I took one last look at my parents and whispered, “I’m sorry.
Bella Forrest (A Shade of Blood (A Shade of Vampire, #2))
Frank looks good.” Irene’s voice at my ear. “When did he get home?” “Yesterday.” “And?” I glanced at the sheriff, who still hovered beside me. I forced a smile to my face. “Everything’s fine. We’ll get things figured out soon. He was exhausted last night. We all went to bed early.” Blood rushed into my face. “Of course he slept in the barn, and . . .” Irene’s head tipped back as she laughed. Sheriff Jeffries’s mouth twisted into a scowl. From across the yard, Frank’s gaze locked on mine. He raised his eyebrows and nodded toward the buggy. “Good-bye, Irene.” I gave her a quick hug, wondering if I would see her again before Frank sent me home. Then I turned to the sheriff. Instead of a good-bye, he held his elbow crooked in my direction. “I’d be happy to escort you to the house.” Sheriff Jeffries’s eyes begged me to say yes. And I knew I ought to oblige. But I found myself wanting to be with my kids again. I didn’t know how much longer I’d have with them. I didn’t want to miss a moment. My mind whirled like the sheriff’s hat. “Thank you, I . . .” Frank had the older kids in the buggy now. He turned toward me with a look of expectancy. “I think I’d better help with the children.” His smile faded a bit, although he seemed to work to make it stay. He walked me to the buggy as if my words hadn’t disappointed him and helped me up to the seat. “Good to have you back, Frank.” Frank nodded. The sheriff touched the brim of his hat and backed away, his gaze undistracted from my face. But Frank’s hard-set jaw and narrowed eyes broke into my line of vision as he plopped Janie in my lap. “If you’re done socializing, we can get on home.” He stalked to the other side of the buggy and hopped up on the seat. I stared at his profile, that rugged face on which I’d seen such vulnerable emotions. But I’d also seen his look of disapproval in church. Now he appeared haughty, almost condescending. My eyes narrowed. What cause did he have to chastise me?
Anne Mateer (Wings of a Dream)
He was like a boy when he slept well. I could see the child he used to be under the man, and I loved them both, simply and completely and irreversibly. I tucked myself beneath his arm, and felt his breath moving in and out, and let myself sleep.
Paula McLain (The Paris Wife)
I used to be a roller coaster girl" (for Ntozake Shange) I used to be a roller coaster girl 7 times in a row No vertigo in these skinny legs My lipstick bubblegum pink As my panther 10 speed. never kissed Nappy pigtails, no-brand gym shoes White lined yellow short-shorts Scratched up legs pedaling past borders of humus and baba ganoush Masjids and liquor stores City chicken, pepperoni bread and superman ice cream Cones. Yellow black blending with bits of Arabic Islam and Catholicism. My daddy was Jesus My mother was quiet Jayne Kennedy was worshipped by my brother Mark I don’t remember having my own bed before 12. Me and my sister Lisa shared. Sometimes all three Moore girls slept in the Queen. You grow up so close never close enough. I used to be a roller coaster girl Wild child full of flowers and ideas Useless crushes on polish boys in a school full of white girls. Future black swan singing Zeppelin, U2 and Rick Springfield Hoping to be Jessie’s Girl I could outrun my brothers and Everybody else to that reoccurring line I used to be a roller coaster girl Till you told me I was moving too fast Said my rush made your head spin My laughter hurt your ears A scream of happiness A whisper of freedom Pouring out my armpits Sweating up my neck You were always the scared one I kept my eyes open for the entire trip Right before the drop I would brace myself And let that force push my head back into That hard iron seat My arms nearly fell off a few times Still, I kept running back to the line When I was done Same way I kept running back to you I used to be a roller coaster girl I wasn’t scared of mountains or falling Hell, I looked forward to flying and dropping Off this earth and coming back to life every once in a while I found some peace in being out of control allowing my blood to race through my veins for 180 seconds I earned my sometime nicotine pull I buy my own damn drinks & the ocean Still calls my name when it feels my toes Near its shore. I still love roller coasters & you grew up to be Afraid of all girls who cld ride Fearlessly like me.
Jessica Care Moore
When Aaron got sick twelve years ago and our whole world began to fall apart, I promised myself I would never forget the person he had been, but it was a promise I found hard to keep. He had a rare neurodegenerative disease that turned him into someone who, except for rare and treasured moments, was barely recognizable as the man I had been married to for almost my entire adult life. The illness first presented with personality and mood changes. Cognitive loss followed. Aaron had symptoms of almost every psychiatric problem I had ever heard of, including depression, paranoia, and obsessive compulsive disorder. He could be irrational and belligerent. He rarely slept and often insisted on leaving the house in the middle of the night to wander the streets. The circumspect and dignified man I married now acted out in public, sometimes attracting a crowd of curious observers or menacing passersby with his strange behavior. Aaron's illness was prolonged, and we lurched from crisis to crisis. My husband grew frail, developing medical complications and eventually life-threatening problems that resulted in frequent hospitalizations. I was exhausted, depressed, and overwhelmed. Through all of this, I sometimes got a glimpse of the old Aaron – loving, caring, and funny – and promised myself I would remember those moments. But, like my memories of him before he became ill, they kept slipping and sliding away as I scrambled to deal with each new crisis that arose. I suppose you might say I became a widow in stages.
Joan Zlotnick (Griefwriting)
Essay on Submission" Having ebbed in the disbelief of it instead of its weight. Stone-tiled the floor the blood a trickling fire confessional. Here the ocean metaphor refused. He tore me shut & seeping no vastness. To marvel or hide in. Being told i don’t exist i laugh with wounded teeth into. The folds of his larynx a choir of bees rattle me. Into myth less the mechanics of. Throat than the usage the context neither divorced from combustion. Of birth more or less i forgave him before. He entered because he swelled for me i could never trust. Myself in his hands but i did want. Him. Knocking leaning into the sliver of light he. Missed the wastebasket he couldn’t bear. The sight of me i never slept. With the lights off i don’t know that. History. But i named it so it can’t be. Holy. Or rather question. Of distance my skin. And cold waters my skin and woundless. Skin i wade in the contradiction. After i wanted only to be. Held. No. Distance his hand & the small of my. Back his hand & the lip. Of a waterfall here i reject the landscape. Its vastness i don’t think. We’re looking for the same thing you. And i you’d think olympus. Would dethrone itself of goldenrod leaves i told you it was. Blood did i claim it. Mine i am built of avoidable. Violences with one drop apocalypse. The burning wilderness you can see yourself. Out now histories like this cannot. Be known let alone escaped even the one. Where i set fire to my colonizer i can afford neither. Reclamation nor reconciliation. No. Unfragmented i cannot give you an ending. That isn’t body lunar. And concave staining instead. The bathroom floor.
George Abraham
• Focus on quantity. You’ve got to get the basics first. If you’re not in bed longer, you can’t get more sleep. For me that meant getting to bed 10 minutes earlier, then another 10, and so on. • Focus on quality. I found two things made a difference: paying more attention to what I eat and drink in the afternoon and evening (no more afternoon lattes!) and doing something other than work, like sudoku or a crossword puzzle, right before falling asleep. • Be accountable. It helps to have help. In my case, I had Arianna as my sleep coach. I can picture her talking about the tough choices she’s made to get enough sleep and I’m motivated to do the same. And on the delicious mornings when I wake up more rested (okay, not every day) I imagine her smiling and saying, “Oh, good, darling, you’ve slept!” • Play the long game. Change is never a straight line, and trying to get more sleep has been no exception. Stuff comes up at work that I want to tackle. I’m with my family and friends, and I don’t want to leave the party. Some nights I just don’t sleep well—but I remind myself that this is a long game, and little incremental changes add up.
Arianna Huffington (The Sleep Revolution: Transforming Your Life, One Night at a Time)
Now that I'd lost you, it seemed to me the hardest thing a human would ever have to face was how to live without the person their heart was tied to. Every day I had to remind my brain and body I was never going to see you again. Remind my skin it would never feel your hands again. Remind my hands they would never touch your back as you slept. Never. I don't think humans are really built to understand what that means. I told myself it should have been easy. All I had to do was go into my house, and shut the door, and live out the rest of my life without you.
Claire McGowan (The Other Wife)
Why was he constantly forming yet never executing good resolutions? Why was he so absent-minded, so lazy, so prone to daydreaming his life away? He vowed to read more seriously. He vowed to quit chewing tobacco. On July 21, 1756, he wrote: 'I am resolved to rise with the sun and to study Scriptures on Thursday, Friday, Saturday, and Sunday mornings, and to study some Latin author the other three mornings. Noons and nights I intend to read English authors... I will rouse up my mind and fix my attention. I will stand collected within myself and think upon what I read and what I see. I will strive with all my soul to be something more than persons who have had less advantages than myself.' But the next morning he slept until seven and a one-line entry the following week read, 'A very rainy day. Dreamed away the time.
David McCullough (John Adams)
I wanted to tell her that I felt I was dying from rage and that I felt guilty about everything and that when I was a kid I woke up every morning singing, that I couldn't wait to leap out of bed and rush out of the house into the magical kingdom that was my world, that dust made visible in sunbeams gave me real authentic joy, that my sparkly golden banana-seated bike with the very high sissy bar took my breath away, the majesty of it, me at age nine, and that now I woke up every morning reminding myself that control is an illusion, taking deep breaths and counting to ten trying to ward off panic attacks and hoping that my own hands hadn't managed to strangle me while I slept.
Miriam Toews (All My Puny Sorrows)
Obi’m, I sometimes worry that you may die before I do or abandon me because I am too much woman to handle and you are not enough man to handle me. So last night, while you slept I gathered myself back into my body. Scraped the remnants of my heart off your sleeve. And withdrew my feelings of deep affection from you.
Ezinne Orjiako, Nkem.
Perhaps the immobility of the things around us is imposed on them by our certainty that they are themselves and not anything else, by the immobility of our mind confronting them. However that may be, when I woke thus, my mind restlessly attempting, without success, to discover where I was, everything revolved around me in the darkness, things, countries, years. My body, too benumbed to move, would try to locate, according to the form of its fatigue, the position of its limbs so as to deduce from this the direction of the wall, the placement of the furniture, so as to reconstruct and name the dwelling in which it found itself. Its memory, the memory of its ribs, its knees, its shoulders, offered in succession several of the rooms where it had slept, while around it the invisible walls, changing place according to the shape of the imagined room, spun through the shadows. And even before my mind, hesitating on the thresholds of times and shapes, had identified the house by reassembling the circumstances, it—my body—would recall the kind of bed in each one, the location of the doors, the angle at which the light came in through the windows, the existence of a hallway, along with the thought I had had as I fell asleep and that I had recovered upon waking. My stiffened side, trying to guess its orientation, would imagine, for instance, that it lay facing the wall in a big canopied bed and immediately I would say to myself: “Why, I went to sleep in the end even though Mama didn’t come to say goodnight to me,” I was in the country in the home of my grandfather, dead for many years; and my body, the side on which I was resting, faithful guardians of a past my mind ought never to have forgotten, recalled to me the flame of the night-light of Bohemian glass, in the shape of an urn, which hung from the ceiling by little chains, the mantelpiece of Siena marble, in my bedroom at Combray, at my grandparents’ house, in faraway days which at this moment I imagined were present without picturing them to myself exactly and which I would see more clearly in a little while when I was fully awake.
Marcel Proust (Swann's Way (In Search of Lost Time, #1))
I TOOK NIMUE TO GYLLAD’S farm. I did not put her in the big hall, but rather used an abandoned shepherd’s cottage where the two of us could be alone. I fed her on broth and milk, but first I washed her clean; washed every inch of her, washed her twice and then washed her black hair and afterwards used a bone comb to tease the tangles free. Some of the tangles were so tight they needed to be cut, but most came free and when her hair hung wet and straight I used the comb to find and kill the lice before I washed her once again. She endured the process like a small obedient child, and when she was clean I wrapped her in a great woollen blanket and took the broth off the fire and made her eat while I washed myself and hunted down the lice that had gone from her body on to mine. By the time I had finished it was dusk and she was fast asleep on a bed made from newly cut bracken. She slept all night and in the morning ate six eggs I had stirred in a pan over the fire. Then she slept again while I took a knife and a piece of leather and cut an eyepatch with a lace she could tie around her hair.
Bernard Cornwell (The Winter King (The Warlord Chronicles, #1))
A creeping sensation at the base of my spine woke me in the middle of the night. I had gone to bed alone, for Narian had not come to me, but I was no longer certain I was the only person in the room. Unnerved, I slowly opened my eyes to see him next to me on his back, hands behind his head, fully awake and staring at the ceiling. “What are you doing?” I whispered, and he shrugged. “I’m…thinking.” “Yes, I can see that much.” I plucked at the bedclothes, then tried again. “What time is it? It must be close to morning--have you slept at all?” Again, that shrug. “I’ll take that as a no.” I laughed, trying to lighten his mood. I draped an arm across his chest, pressing myself against him, and he lowered one arm to embrace me. I was concerned about him--the previous evening he’d left the royal box shortly before the feast and had not returned to eat with us, unlike the other men. Perhaps he had wanted to avoid all contact with Koranis, or avoid problems for Alantonya if the Baron saw her with their firstborn. It wasn’t until the feast had concluded, and the drinking and dancing had begun, that he had returned. And at that point, he had, without explanation, taken me back to the Bastion, insisting that I stay there. I had done as he had requested, despite the fire and explosions that had occurred a few hours later, and I had not attended the faire on this, its final day, again in accordance with his wishes. He had handled the disturbance of the night before but did not trust that there would be no further breaches of the peace. Now he was avoiding sleep, and he would be leaving early in the morning for Cokyri. “You need rest, Narian,” I murmured, fighting off drowsiness. “Are you thinking about your family?” “Alera, you are my family. You’re all the family I need.” He hesitated, then changed the subject. “Can…can I ask you for a favor?” “Of course,” I answered, sitting up, for whatever was on his mind was more serious than I had thought. “Come to Cokyri with me.” I peered at him, unable to see his face clearly in the darkness. “What? Why?” “I want you to see it. The mountains. When all is said and done, I don’t know how often I’ll be returning there. I just…want you to see it.” “All right,” I said, baffled by the unusual nature of the request and by his explanation, for he regularly went to Cokyri. But if it was important to him--and obviously it was--I would go.
Cayla Kluver (Sacrifice (Legacy, #3))
Don’t Rylee me! Do you want some sick fuck somewhere jacking off to images of you and me having sex? I mean, seriously? Doesn’t that make your stomach turn, Colton? I’m your wife. Not some whore you slept with and discarded for God’s sake.” I push myself out of the chair needing to get away from him and get some perspective. He’s talking crazy, and right now, I have enough crazy in my life.
K. Bromberg (Aced (Driven, #4))
What?” His voice was loud, and I couldn’t stop myself from laughing heartily. My laughter only increased as Jakob did a slow burn. “I’m joking, goofy.” I touched his jacket lapel lightly, and I could feel his heart racing. “I haven’t slept with Blake, and I’ve never seen him naked. Stop acting like a jealous boyfriend.
J.S. Cooper (Resolution (Swept Away #3))
Megan Meade’s Guide to the McGowan Boys Entry Seven Observation #1: Boys are capable of being hurt. Even the ones that seem totally happy and confident and like they pretty much rule the planet. Observation #2: When the penis takes over, it TAKES OVER. Doug slept with Hailey. He SLEPT with HAILEY. I can’t even count the number of important and obvious facts that had to be ignored in order for this to happen. Observation #3: Boys can be counted on. Finn totally bailed me out when I got stranded. He even cut his date with Kayla short to do it. Of course, when you look at observation #2, it seems they can’t ALWAYS be counted on. So maybe there’s a footnote to this one. Boys can be counted on unless they’re thinking with their penises. Of course, Finn was on a date, so he probably was in penis-thinking mode. Now I’m confusing myself. Hey, did you ever notice what a funny word penis is? Especially when you keep repeating it over and over…
Kate Brian (Megan Meade's Guide to the McGowan Boys)
I had slept nothing all night, making ghosts for myself, filling my mind with them and giving myself pale frights. All the ghosts had a different punishment for me, some of them shocking indeed.
Richard Llewellyn (How Green Was My Valley)
When he’d wanted to find out about a scared guy in a jalopy with his whole family behind him hoping for a living in California, he hadn’t stood on Route 66 and signaled one of them to a stop so he could ask a lot of questions. He’d just bought himself some old clothes and a breaking-up car and taken Route 66 himself. He’d melted into the crowds moving from grove to grove, ranch to ranch, picking till he’d dropped. He lived in their camps, ate what they ate, told nobody what he was. He’d found the answers in his own guts, not somebody else’s. He’d been an Okie. And the mine series. What had he done to get research for it? Go and tap some poor grimy guy on the shoulder and begin to talk? No, he’d damn well gone to Scranton, got himself a job, gone down into the dark, slept in a bunk in a shack. He hadn’t dug into a man’s secret being. He’d been a miner. “Christ!” He banged his fist on his thigh. His breath seemed to suck back into his lungs. The startled flesh of his leg still felt the impact of the blow. “Oh, God, I’ve got it. It’s the way. It’s the only way. I’ll be Jewish. I’ll just say—nobody knows me—I can just say it. I can live it myself. Six weeks, eight weeks, nine months —however long it takes. Christ, I’ve got it.” An
Laura Z. Hobson (Gentleman's Agreement)
From: James Grayson To: Luke Whitford Dec 10 I’ve seen Ryan this afternoon. He behaved like nothing happened. Looks like he doesn’t remember. From: Luke Whitford To: James Grayson Dec 10 Are you glad or disappointed? From: James Grayson To: Luke Whitford Dec 10 Not sure. I guess it was just very anticlimactic after I barely slept last night and had almost worked myself into a nervous breakdown. Anyway, enough about me. Is your dad really sending you to Russia? Are you excited? You must be excited. From: Luke Whitford To: James Grayson Dec 10 Ugh, don’t remind me.
Alessandra Hazard (Just a Bit Confusing (Straight Guys #5))