Life Bumps Quotes

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Just that dwelling and planning is bullshit, you dwell on the past, you can’t move forward. Spend too much time planning for the future and you just push yourself backwards, or you stay stagnant in the same place all your life. Live in the moment, where everything is just right, take your time and limit your bad memories and you’ll get wherever it is you’re going a lot faster and with less bumps in the road along the way.
J.A. Redmerski (The Edge of Never (The Edge of Never, #1))
It’s not always easy to get over some of those bumps in the road, those disillusionments and disappointments. It’s going to take a strong will. Sometimes, it may take courage. Sometimes nothing but faith in God and say, I refuse to be trapped in the past. I’m not going to let the past destroy my future. I’m pressing on. I’m straining forward, knowing that God has great things in store for me.
Joel Osteen (Your Best Life Now: 7 Steps to Living at Your Full Potential)
Our lives disconnect and reconnect, we move on, and later we may again touch one another, again bounce away. This is the felt shape of a human life, neither simply linear nor wholly disjunctive nor endlessly bifurcating, but rather this bouncey-castle sequence of bumpings-into and tumblings-apart.
Salman Rushdie (The Ground Beneath Her Feet)
In periods of rapid personal change, we pass through life as though we are spellcast. We speak in sentences that end before finishing. We sleep heavily because we need to ask so many questions as we dream alone. We bump into others and feel bashful at recognizing souls so similar to ourselves.
Douglas Coupland (Shampoo Planet)
Every now and then, I’d meet a guy and think that we were getting along great, and suddenly I’d stop hearing from him. Not only did he stop calling, but if I happened to bump into him sometime later he always acted like I had the plague. I didn’t understand it. I still don’t. And it bothered me. It hurt me. With time, it got harder and harder to keep blaming the guys, and I eventually came to the conclusion that there was something wrong with me. That maybe I was simply meant to live my life alone.
Nicholas Sparks (The Lucky One)
It is a small world. You do not have to live in it particularly long to learn that for yourself. There is a theory that, in the whole world, there are only five hundred real people (the cast, as it were; all the rest of the people in the world, the theory suggests, are extras) and what is more, they all know each other. And it's true, or true as far as it goes. In reality the world is made of thousands upon thousands of groups of about five hundred people, all of whom will spend their lives bumping into each other, trying to avoid each other, and discovering each other in the same unlikely teashop in Vancouver. There is an unavoidability to this process. It's not even coincidence. It's just the way the world works, with no regard for individuals or for propriety.
Neil Gaiman (Anansi Boys)
Who does ever get what they want? It doesn’t seem to happen to many of us if any at all. It’s always two people bumping against each other blindly, acting out old ideas and dreams and mistaken understandings.
Kent Haruf (Our Souls at Night)
I don't want to live in a world where the strong rule and the weak cower. I'd rather make a place where things are a little quieter. Where trolls stay the hell under their bridges and where elves don't come swooping out to snatch children from their cradles. Where vampires respect the limits, and where the faeries mind their p's and q's. My name is Harry Blackstone Copperfield Dresden. Conjure by it at your own risk. When things get strange, when what goes bump in the night flicks on the lights, when no one else can help you, give me a call. I'm in the book.
Jim Butcher (Storm Front (The Dresden Files, #1))
Favorite Quotations. I speak my mind because it hurts to bite my tongue. The worth of a book is measured by what you carry away from it. It's not over till it's over. Imagination is everything. All life is an experiment. What the caterpillar calls the end of the world, the master calls the butterfly.
Pat Frayne (Tales of Topaz the Conjure Cat: Part I Topaz and the Evil Wizard & Part II Topaz and the Plum-Gista Stone)
Next time you hit a speed bump otherwise known as the age-old question “Why are you still single?” look ’em in the eye and say: “Because I’m too fabulous to settle.
Mandy Hale (The Single Woman: Life, Love, and a Dash of Sass)
Perfectly Imperfect We have all heard that no two snowflakes are alike. Each snowflake takes the perfect form for the maximum efficiency and effectiveness for its journey. And while the universal force of gravity gives them a shared destination, the expansive space in the air gives each snowflake the opportunity to take their own path. They are on the same journey, but each takes a different path. Along this gravity-driven journey, some snowflakes collide and damage each other, some collide and join together, some are influenced by wind... there are so many transitions and changes that take place along the journey of the snowflake. But, no matter what the transition, the snowflake always finds itself perfectly shaped for its journey. I find parallels in nature to be a beautiful reflection of grand orchestration. One of these parallels is of snowflakes and us. We, too, are all headed in the same direction. We are being driven by a universal force to the same destination. We are all individuals taking different journeys and along our journey, we sometimes bump into each other, we cross paths, we become altered... we take different physical forms. But at all times we too are 100% perfectly imperfect. At every given moment we are absolutely perfect for what is required for our journey. I’m not perfect for your journey and you’re not perfect for my journey, but I’m perfect for my journey and you’re perfect for your journey. We’re heading to the same place, we’re taking different routes, but we’re both exactly perfect the way we are. Think of what understanding this great orchestration could mean for relationships. Imagine interacting with others knowing that they too each share this parallel with the snowflake. Like you, they are headed to the same place and no matter what they may appear like to you, they have taken the perfect form for their journey. How strong our relationships would be if we could see and respect that we are all perfectly imperfect for our journey.
Steve Maraboli (Life, the Truth, and Being Free)
Then there’s the kind of zombie I’ve become now: the one who has lost everything—his brain, his heart, his light, his direction. He wanders the world, bumping into this, tripping over that, but keeps going and going. That is life after death.
Adam Silvera (History Is All You Left Me)
Bad things happen to good people all the time. It sucks. It's not fair but then much of life isn't fair. It's how you live that matters. It's how you deal with the bumps in the road.
Maya Banks (Echoes at Dawn (KGI, #5))
The trouble with real life is that you don't know whether you're the hero or just some nice chap who gets bumped off in chapter five to show what a rotter the villain is without anyone minding too much.
Sarah Caudwell (The Sirens Sang of Murder (Hilary Tamar, #3))
We've never managed, either one of us, to get all the way into life. We're hanging on to the outside for all we're worth, convinced we're going to fall off at the next bump.
Paul Bowles (The Sheltering Sky)
Life isn’t smooth, but it’s the bumps that help us find out who we are. And it’s handling the bumps that gives us courage.
Sarah Morgan (Once a Ferrara Wife... (Ferrara, #1))
It's Life. It's the bumps and the bruises, the pain and the fear; it's messy and it's real and it's not some perfect little story that can be tied up in a bow.
Tara Sivec (Watch over Me)
Sometimes it seemed as if his whole life was an exercise in waiting; not waiting to leave, exactly, but simply waiting to go. He felt like one of those fish that had the capacity to grow in unimaginable ways if only the tank were big enough. But his tank had always been small, and as much as he loved his home- as much as he loved his family- he'd always felt himself bumping up against the edges of his own life.
Jennifer E. Smith (The Geography of You and Me)
There’s power in the touch of another person’s hand. We acknowledge it in little ways, all the time. There’s a reason human beings shake hands, hold hands, slap hands, bump hands. “It comes from our very earliest memories, when we all come into the world blinded by light and color, deafened by riotous sound, flailing in a suddenly cavernous space without any way of orienting ourselves, shuddering with cold, emptied with hunger, and justifiably frightened and confused. And what changes that first horror, that original state of terror? “The touch of another person’s hands. “Hands that wrap us in warmth, that hold us close. Hands that guide us to shelter, to comfort, to food. Hands that hold and touch and reassure us through our very first crisis, and guide us into our very first shelter from pain. The first thing we ever learn is that the touch of someone else’s hand can ease pain and make things better. “That’s power. That’s power so fundamental that most people never even realize it exists.
Jim Butcher (Skin Game (The Dresden Files, #15))
If your life truths have to be protected like some people keep their couches in plastic then ciao. have a nice life. if we bump into eachoter at Target, i'm the one buying the sour gummy worms and thats all you need to know about me.
Deb Caletti (Wild Roses)
Suddenly, it's all too much. Bryn and the bump watch. Vanessa with my high school yearbook. The idea that nothing's sacred. Everything's fodder. That my life belongs to anyone but me.
Gayle Forman (Where She Went (If I Stay, #2))
At the beginning of the semester, when you asked who I loved the most, an image of my mother popped in my head. When you asked me who I loved the most for the second time, it wasn’t an image of my mother. Instead, it was replaced by an image of a strawberry blonde with big, blue eyes. It took me a long time to figure out the exact moment I fell in love with her, partly because I denied that I did until it was too late. I fucked up so badly and did so many things wrong, to the point of no return, so I let her go. The selfless part inside of me wants to say I did the right thing, and the selfish part of me thinks I made the biggest mistake of my life. I guess the selfless side won out because, every time I look at her and see what I did, I realize I don’t deserve her. I was never supposed to fall in love with her, but that was the best mistake of my life. I will always love her; I have ever since I purposely bumped into her in the hallway.
Sarah Brianne (Nero (Made Men, #1))
It's like I get into a roller coaster, and sit there while it goes up and down and upside down and sometimes I get thrown out and I hit my head, but I crawl back in again and the moment I'm back in, it just keeps on going and going again...all of this, so I can find things out and then I write about the things I find out so you can find them out from me. All the bruises, all the wounds, all the bumps on the head, all the scars, just so I can take that and I can write all these things, and sometimes I say "God, I don't want to be in this roller coaster anymore." But when I think about it, if I'm not right here, then where the hell would I be? On the sidewalk? I wasn't born to stand on the sidewalk, I was born to fly around crazy in the sky!
C. JoyBell C.
In movies, it's all beautifully choreographed, set to an increasingly dramatic soundtrack. In movies, when the boy pulls the girl to him when they are both finally undressed, they never bump their teeth together and get embarrassed and have to laugh and try again. But here's the truth: In movies, it's never half so lovely as it is here and now with Jase.
Huntley Fitzpatrick (My Life Next Door)
Spirituality is a mixed-up, topsy-turvy, helter-skelter godliness that turns our lives into an upside-down toboggan ride of unexpected turns, surprise bumps and bone shattering crashes ... a life ruined by a Jesus who loves us right into his arms.
Mike Yaconelli (Messy Spirituality: God's Annoying Love for Imperfect People)
GOD DOESN’T HATE FAGS OR ANYBODY ELSE FOR THAT MATTER. GOD SAVES! THEN, GOD PASSES IT TO GRETZKY - WHO ROOFS THAT SHIT, TOP-SHELF! THEN GOD AND GRETZKY HIGH FIVE & BELLY-BUMP, CELEBRATING THEIR HOCKEY PROWESS. AND NEVER ONCE DO THEY GIVE A SHIT IF ANYBODY’S GAY OR NOT.
Kevin Smith (Tough Shit: Life Advice from a Fat, Lazy Slob Who Did Good)
The more I got to know people, the more I realized we were all just a bunch of frightened idiots walking around in the dark, bumping into each other and panicking for no reason at all. So I started turning on a light. I stopped thinking of people as mobs. Hordes. Faceless masses. I tried, really hard, to stop assuming I had people figured out, especially before I’d ever even spoken to them. I wasn’t great at this—and I’d probably have to work at it for the rest of my life—but I tried. I really did. It scared me to realize that I’d done to others exactly what I hadn’t wanted them to do to me: I made sweeping statements about who I thought they were and how they lived their lives; and I made broad generalizations about what I thought they were thinking, all the time.
Tahereh Mafi (A Very Large Expanse of Sea)
I let myself feel good for no reason. I let joy happen right there and then, and it's inside me and around me, it's the lights on the road ahead, the clean black of the night, the cold air coming through the window. It's like hearing a song for the first time and being struck by it, haunted by it, wanting to hunt it down and catch it, because the song sums up something you didn't know you wanted to say, giving you chills and goose bumps. But even as you find out what it's called, and you're thinking you'll download it, you've already lost. Because the feeling was right then and there and it's already fading like a dream. You just have to see those times for what they are: a chance to look down at your life. And when you do, you see it's a skin made up of shiny little moments.
Kirsty Eagar (Raw Blue)
My God, woman. Your aura is glowing. Just admit you like him, bump uglies, and get on with your life!
Kim Harrison (The Undead Pool (The Hollows, #12))
Ragnor stayed for thirteen days. They were the longest thirteen days of Magnus’s life. Every time Magnus tried to have a little fun, there they were, the short one and the green one, shaking their heads in tandem and then saying snotty things. On one occasion Magnus turned his head very quickly and saw them exchanging a fist bump.
Cassandra Clare (The Bane Chronicles)
He had built up within himself a kind of sanctuary in which she throned among his secret thoughts and longings. Little by little it became the scene of his real life, of his only rational activities; thither he brought the books he read, the ideas and feelings which nourished him, his judgments and his visions. Outside it, in the scene of his actual life, he moved with a growing sense of unreality and insufficiency, blundering against familiar prejudices and traditional points of view as an absent-minded man goes on bumping into the furniture of his own room.
Edith Wharton (The Age of Innocence)
She had always enjoyed her sense of being alone, envisioning herself as a ball that rolled through life, bumping into other lives but not stopping.
Linda Howard (Now You See Her)
Oh. No wonder I'd been sick. I hadn't eaten anything since then. I'm a girl who likes her meals, so it hadn't been a weight-loss tactic. I'd just been too busy bumping from crisis to crisis. Go on the Sookie Stackhouse Narrow Avoidance of Death Diet! Run for your life, and miss meals, too! Exercise plus starvation.
Charlaine Harris (Dead Reckoning (Sookie Stackhouse, #11))
So if your life truths have to be protected the same way some people keep their couches in plastic, then ciao. Have a nice life. If we bump into each other at Target, I'm the one buying the sour gummy worms, and that's all you need to know about me.
Deb Caletti (Wild Roses)
Life's a riddle, child," he said lightly, "but if you can feel the bumps on the road, it means you're alive and in the game. And that is a good place to be.
C.A. Belmond (A Rather Charming Invitation (Penny Nichols, #3))
I've been offered proof of God's existence at regular intervals in my life through experiences so profound they've given goose bumps to atheists.
Jennifer Skiff (God Stories: Inspiring Encounters with the Divine)
But the thing is, my slate will never be swiped clean--this will never fade into the background and become some sort of learning experience or bump in the road. The shit that happened in my life and this book is real. And because I finally woke up to that whole realization much too late--the realization that life really happens and there is always a consequence for your actions--I lost everything in some sense, but in a weird kind of great way, if you flip it all around, I may have gained the most important thing of all: the truth. I can live with that.
Jason Myers (Exit Here.)
It’s funny how life moves in a complete circle sometimes. There might be lots of bumps in the road and maybe even a few cliffs, but it’s a journey, and sometimes it can bring you to the most wonderful places.
Nyrae Dawn (Searching for Beautiful)
Do I have an original thought in my head? My bald head. Maybe if I were happier, my hair wouldn't be falling out. Life is short. I need to make the most of it. Today is the first day of the rest of my life. I'm a walking cliché. I really need to go to the doctor and have my leg checked. There's something wrong. A bump. The dentist called again. I'm way overdue. If I stop putting things off, I would be happier. All I do is sit on my fat ass. If my ass wasn't fat I would be happier. I wouldn't have to wear these shirts with the tails out all the time. Like that's fooling anyone. Fat ass. I should start jogging again. Five miles a day. Really do it this time. Maybe rock climbing. I need to turn my life around. What do I need to do? I need to fall in love. I need to have a girlfriend. I need to read more, improve myself. What if I learned Russian or something? Or took up an instrument? I could speak Chinese. I'd be the screenwriter who speaks Chinese and plays the oboe. That would be cool. I should get my hair cut short. Stop trying to fool myself and everyone else into thinking I have a full head of hair. How pathetic is that? Just be real. Confident. Isn't that what women are attracted to? Men don't have to be attractive. But that's not true. Especially these days. Almost as much pressure on men as there is on women these days. Why should I be made to feel I have to apologize for my existence? Maybe it's my brain chemistry. Maybe that's what's wrong with me. Bad chemistry. All my problems and anxiety can be reduced to a chemical imbalance or some kind of misfiring synapses. I need to get help for that. But I'll still be ugly though. Nothing's gonna change that.
Charlie Kaufman
If hitting an unexpected speed bump with your car equates to the best sex you've had lately, you know your hormones are sending you a signal.
Ellen Phillips (Everything You Need To Know About The Menopause: A Comprehensive Guide To Surviving - And Thriving! - During This Turbulent Life Sage)
On that ledge in the blackness, she'd truly recognized for the first time in her life that some creatures who went bump in the night might hate that they did.
Kresley Cole (Wicked Deeds on a Winter's Night (Immortals After Dark, #3))
However life, unlike art, has an irritating way of bumping and limping on, undoing conversions, casting doubt on solutions, and generally illustrating the impossibility of living happily or virtuously ever after.
Iris Murdoch (The Sea, the Sea)
You dwell on the past, you can't move forward. Spend too much time planning for the future and you just push yourself backwards, or you stay stagnant in the same place all your life." "Live in the moment," he says as if making a serious point, "Where everything is just right, take your time and limit your bad memories and you'll get wherever it is you're going a lot faster and with less bumps in the way.
J.A. Redmerski
Life's exciting seas cannot be sailed unless you're ready to leave the port behind.
Byron Sogie-Thomas (Razor Bumps and Stretch Marks)
He hesitates only a moment before pulling me close, arms tightening around me, mouth meeting mine the same way it did before. Purely, sweetly, wickedly, perfectly. He sighs against my lips, a sound of such relief it echoes through my skin, making me smile and our teeth bump together. I know exactly how he feels. How it feels to come home, to find sanctuary, to be handed that missing piece that makes life not something to be endured, but something to be celebrated.
Stacey Jay (Juliet Immortal (Juliet Immortal, #1))
The journey has many bumps, twists and turns. But one day you will reach your destination. You'll know for sure then that it was all worth it. So keep on trusting and keep on walking. The end will be more glorious than you can imagine.
Anusha Atukorala
Its always hard to find out that a person you once considered a great friend has completely turned their back on you. Life is full of surprises, some good and some bad. From my experience, bumping into bad ones never gets easier, but you learn to expect it, learn from it, and move on. Thats the only thing we can do... is move on.
Hilda Yacoubian
They walk together, listing and pitching, bumping off the hallway walls and each other’s hips. A drunk wife and a husband with HD. They make a fine pair. As they lurch down the hallway and finally make it to the kitchen, it occurs to Joe that this is the best anyone can hope for in life. Someone you love to stagger through the hard times with.
Lisa Genova (Inside the O'Briens)
The world's a headmaster who works on your faults. I don't mean in a mystical or Jesus way. More how you'll keep tripping over a hidden step, over and over, till you finally understand: Watch out for that step! Everything that's wrong with us, if we're too selfish or too Yessir, Nosir, Three bags full sir or too anything, that's a hidden step. Either you suffer the consequences of not noticing your fault forever or, one day, you do notice it, and fix it. Joke is, once you get it into your brain about that hidden step and think, Hey, life isn't such a shithouse after all again, then BUMP! Down you go, a whole new flight of hidden steps. There are always more.
David Mitchell
There is so little life, and it is fraught with chance. We meet, we don't meet, we take the wrong turning, and still bump into each other. We conscientiously choose the 'right road' and it leads nowhere.
Jeanette Winterson (Lighthousekeeping)
Nevertheless, if you ask me, most people have children just as their own enthusiasm about life begins to wane. A child allows us to revisit the excitement we once felt about, well... everything. A generation later, our grandkids bump up our enthusiasm yet again. Reproducing is a kind of booster shot to keep us loving life.
Chuck Palahniuk (Damned (Damned, #1))
Twenty to life, she got, with time off for good behavior. You come around next spring. I'll introduce you.
Alfred Hitchcock (Alfred Hitchcock Presents: Stories That Go Bump in the Night)
Stay confident even when something bad happens. It is just a bump in the road. It will pass.
Donald J. Trump (Think Big: Make It Happen in Business and Life)
Lifestyle creep is when the cost of your lifestyle rises in tandem with your income. Any income bump goes toward paying higher expenses.
Jesse Mecham (You Need a Budget: The Proven System for Breaking the Paycheck to Paycheck Cycle, Getting Out of Debt, and Living the Life You Want)
I'm convinced true fulfillment is living in God's world one day at a time, savoring it, leaving today's disapointments behind and borrowing no troubles from tomorrow. It's done not only by accepting life, fever, and things that go bump in the night, but also by cultivating love and new and old friendships, and especially by finding a new work or project that makes it exciting just to get up in the morning.
Olive Ann Burns (Leaving Cold Sassy: The Unfinished Sequel to Cold Sassy Tree)
I don't yell back at my mother. When I'm angry or scared or upset, I don't yell. I stay quiet. I've seen how she is, how she would get with Kent and with me and with other people, life if someone at the pharmacy got in the wrong line or asked too long a question, or if someone on the bus accidentally bumped her. I've watched her my whole life, the way people react to her. It doesn't actually help you get what you want, yelling and being like that. It only makes people think bad of you.
Sara Zarr (How to Save a Life)
Maybe when your big picture is in place, all those bumps in the road along the way get sort of smoothed over.
Michelle Dalton (Fifteenth Summer)
There are those wonderful moments of clarity in life when one is reminded how irreparably flawed we humans are. Once, when I was nineteen, on the subway in Boston I lost my balance slightly and bumped into an elderly woman. I quickly apologized and she replied, "Well, hold on to something, stupid." There it is. That's it. That's it in a nutshell. I don't want to sound negative, but I think every fetus should be shown a film of that incident, maybe projected up on the uterine wall, and then asked if it wants to come out. I am a strong believer in a woman's right to choose, but I also think that in the last trimester, the kid should be given every opportunity to back out.
Paula Poundstone
Her sigh was a benediction—an ecstatic surety that she was youth and beauty now as much as she would ever know. For another instant life was radiant and time a phantom and their strength eternal—then there was a bumping, scraping sound as the rowboat scraped alongside. Up
F. Scott Fitzgerald (Flappers and Philosophers)
The way Misha tells it, he drove like a blind man, giving the car almost full independence to feel its way along, bumping off things, only giving the wheel a spin with the tips of this fingers when the situation verged on life threatening.
Nicole Krauss (The History of Love)
As suburban children we floated at night in swimming pools the temperature of blood; pools the color of Earth as seen from outer space. We would float and be naked—pretending to be embryos, pretending to be fetuses—all of us silent save for the hum of the pool filter. Our minds would be blank and our eyes closed as we floated in warm waters, the distinction between our bodies and our brains reduced to nothing—bathed in chlorine and lit by pure blue lights installed underneath diving boards. Sometimes we would join hands and form a ring like astronauts in space; sometimes when we felt more isolated in our fetal stupor we would bump into each other in the deep end, like twins with whom we didn’t even know we shared a womb.
Douglas Coupland (Life After God)
None of us knows the wisdom of the Lord. We do not know in advance exactly how He would get us from where we are to where we need to be, but He does offer us broad outlines in our patriarchal blessings. We encounter many bumps, bends, and forks in the road of life that leads to the eternities.
James E. Faust
Those are big collisions, Hally. They make for a lot of bruises. People get hurt in all that bumping, and we're sick and tired of it now. It's been going on for too long. Are we never going to get it right?...Learn to dance life like champions instead of always being just a bunch of beginners at it?
Athol Fugard (Master Harold...and the boys)
It's your duty to use what influence you have, unless you want to drift through life like a fish belly-up on the stream" "I wish I could believe that life really is something more than a stream that carries us along, belly-up" "Alright, if it's a stream, you're still free to be in this part of it or that part, aren't you? The water will divide again and again. If you bump, and tussle, and fight, and make use of whatever advantages you might have-" "Oh, that's fine, I'm sure, when you have advantages." "You'd find them everywhere, if you ever bothered to look!
Arthur Golden (Memoirs of a Geisha)
Why? Because, Michael whatever your middle fucking name is Ripton, there’s something about that boxer fist bump handshake - something about that agreement we made - that tells me for the first time in your fucked up little life that you’re not going to fuck me over,
Scott Hildreth (Unstoppable (Fighter Erotic Romance, #2))
That night, Ronan didn’t dream. After Gansey and Blue had left the Barns, he leaned against one of the front porch pillars and looked out at his fireflies winking in the chilly darkness. He was so raw and electric that it was hard to believe that he was awake. Normally it took sleep to strip him to this naked energy. But this was not a dream. This was his life, his home, his night. After a few moments, he heard the door ease open behind him and Adam joined him. Silently they looked over the dancing lights in the fields. It was not difficult to see that Adam was working intensely with his own thoughts. Words kept rising up inside Ronan and bursting before they ever escaped. He felt he’d already asked the question; he couldn’t also give the answer. Three deer appeared at the tree line, just at the edge of the porch light’s reach. One of them was the beautiful pale buck, his antlers like branches or roots. He watched them, and they watched him, and then Ronan could not stand it. “Adam?” When Adam kissed him, it was every mile per hour Ronan had ever gone over the speed limit. It was every window-down, goose-bumps-on-skin, teeth-chattering-cold night drive. It was Adam’s ribs under Ronan’s hands and Adam’s mouth on his mouth, again and again and again. It was stubble on lips and Ronan having to stop, to get his breath, to restart his heart. They were both hungry animals, but Adam had been starving for longer. Inside, they pretended they would dream, but they did not. They sprawled on the living room sofa and Adam studied the tattoo that covered Ronan’s back: all the sharp edges that hooked wondrously and fearfully into each other. “Unguibus et rostro,” Adam said. Ronan put Adam’s fingers to his mouth. He was never sleeping again.
Maggie Stiefvater (The Raven King (The Raven Cycle, #4))
So many people bump into our lives for a second and it changes us forever, but they never know it. And while that's funny and strange and a little sad, it's also just life. And the truth of the matter is, it was never really about them anyway. It was always about us and what we were meant to learn from them. It was always about us and who we were meant to BECOME as a result of having encountered them.
Mandy Hale (You Are Enough: Heartbreak, Healing, and Becoming Whole)
You know what?” he said with great earnestness. “I think we’re both afraid of the same thing. And for the same reason. We’ve never managed, either one of us, to get all the way into life. We’re hanging on to the outside for all we’re worth, convinced we’re going to fall off at the next bump. Isn’t that true?
Paul Bowles (The Sheltering Sky)
It´s ironic how failures in life are often proceded by warning signs that we dont pick up on, either because they´re not loud enough or we´re not paying attention...When the little warnings fail to do their job, the universe simply bumps up its campaign to get you back n track. Even if it means clocking you over the head with a major disaster to finally shake some sense into you.
Kay Cassidy (The Cinderella Society (The Cinderella Society, #1))
And tomorrow, next month, next year? It will take a long time. Years from now, they will still be arranging the pieces they know, puzzling over her features, redrawing her outlines in their minds. Sure that they've got her right this time, positive in this moment that they understand her completely, at last. They will think of her often: when Marilyn opens the curtains in Lydia's room, opens the closet, and begins to take the clothing from the shelves. When their father, one day, enters a party for the first time does not glance, quickly, at all the blond heads in the room. When Hannah begins to stand a little straighter, when she begins to speak a bit clearer, when one day she flicks her hair behind her ear in a familiar gesture and wonders, for a moment, where she got it. And Nath. When at school people ask if he has siblings: two sisters, but one died; when one day, he looks at the small bump that will always mar the bridge of Jack's nose and wants to trace it, gently, with his finger. When a long, long time later, he stares down at the silent blue marble of the earth and thinks of his sister, as he will at every important moment of his life. He doesn't know this yet, but he senses it deep down in his core. So much will happen, he thinks, that I would want to tell you.
Celeste Ng (Everything I Never Told You)
i tthink too many people use the word love when they don’t mean it. They enjoy a relationship with someone, but the first bump or two in their path and they realize it wasn’t real love—and they move on. Micah is my forever love. Could our relationship end? We’re human and full of flaws, so sure it could. Would it hurt me the rest of my life? Absolutely. He is the only one for me. At the risk of sounding cliché, he’s my soul mate.
Lindsay Delagair (Untraceable (Untouchable, #3))
Little by little it became the scene of his real life, of his only rational activities; thither he brought the books he read, the ideas and feelings which nourished him, his judgments and his visions. Outside it, in the scene of his actual life, he moved with a growing sense of unreality and insufficiency, blundering against familiar prejudices and traditional points of view as an absent-minded man goes on bumping into the furniture of his own room. Absent- that was what he was: so absent from everything most densely real and near to those about him that it sometimes startled him to find they still imagined he was there.
Edith Wharton (The Age of Innocence)
Life is like the big wheel at Luna Park. You pay five francs and go into a room with tiers of seats all around, and in the centre the floor is made of a great disc of polished wood that revolves quickly. At first you sit down and watch the others. They are all trying to sit in the wheel, and they keep getting flung off, and that makes them laugh too. It's great fun. You see, the nearer you can get to the hub of the wheel the slower it is moving and the easier it is to stay on. There's generally someone in the centre who stands up and sometimes does a sort of dance. Often he's paid by the management, though, or, at any rate, he's allowed in free. Of course at the very centre there's a point completely at rest, if one could only find it; I'm not very near that point myself. Of course the professional men get in the way. Lots of people just enjoy scrambling on and being whisked off and scrambling on again. How they all shriek and giggle! Then there are others, like Margot, who sit as far out as they can and hold on for dear life and enjoy that. But the whole point about the wheel is that you needn't get on it at all, if you don't want to. People get hold of ideas about life, and that makes them think they've got to join in the game, even if they don't enjoy it. It doesn't suit everyone. People don't see that when they say "life" they mean two different things. They can mean simply existence, with its physiological implications of growth and organic change. They can't escape that - even by death, but because that's inevitable they think the other idea of life is too - the scrambling and excitement and bumps and the effort to get to the middle, and when we do get to the middle, it's just as if we never started. It's so odd. Now you're a person who was clearly meant to stay in the seats and sit still and if you get bored watch the others. Somehow you got on to the wheel, and you got thrown off again at once with a hard bump. It's all right for Margot, who can cling on, and for me, at the centre, but you're static. Instead of this absurd division into sexes they ought to class people as static and dynamic. There's a real distinction there, though I can't tell you how it comes. I think we're probably two quite different species spiritually.
Evelyn Waugh (Decline and Fall)
Signs and wonders, eh? Pity if there is nothing wonderful in signs, and significant in wonders! There's a clue somewhere; wait a bit; hist--hark! By Jove, I have it! Look, you Doubloon, your zodiac here is the life of man in one round chapter; and now I'll read it off, straight out of the book. Come, Almanack! To begin: there's Aries, or the Ram--lecherous dog, he begets us; then, Taurus, or the Bull--he bumps us the first thing; then Gemini, or the Twins--that is, Virtue and Vice; we try to reach Virtue, when lo! comes Cancer the Crab, and drags us back; and here, going from Virtue, Leo, a roaring Lion, lies in the path--he gives a few fierce bites and surly dabs with his paw; we escape, and hail Virgo, the Virgin! that's our first love; we marry and think to be happy for aye, when pop comes Libra, or Scales--happiness weighed and found wanting; and while we are very sad about that, Lord! how we suddenly jump, as Scorpio, or the Scorpion, stings us in rear; we are curing the wound, when whang comes the arrows all round; Sagittarius, or the Archer, is amusing himself. As we pluck out the shafts, stand aside! here's the battering-ram, Capricornus, or the Goat; full tilt, he comes rushing and headlong we are tossed; when Aquarius, or the the Waterbearer, pours out his whole deluge and drowns us; and, to wind up, with Pisces, or the Fishes, we sleep. There's a sermon now, writ in high heaven, and the sun goes through it every year, and yet comes out of it all alive and hearty.
Herman Melville (Moby-Dick)
There's a class of things to be afraid of: it's "those things that you should be afraid of". Those are the things that go bump in the night, right? You're always exposed to them when you go to horror movies, especially if they're not the gore type of horror movie. They're always hinting at something that's going on outside of your perceptual sphere, and they frighten you because you don't know what's out there. For that the Blair Witch Project was a really good example, because nothing ever happens in that movie but it's frightenting and not gory. It plays on the fact tht you do have a category of Those Things Of Which You Should Be Afraid. So it's a category, frightening things. And only things capable of abstraction can come up with something like the caregory of frightenting things. And so Kali is like an embodied representation of the category of frightening things. And then you might ask yourself, well once you come up with the concept of the category of frightening things, maybe you can come up with the concept of what to do in the face of frightening things. Which is not the same as "what do you do when you encounter a lion", or "what do you do when you encounter someone angry". It's a meta question, right? But then you could say, at a philosophical level: "You will encounter elements of the category of all those things which can frighten and undermine you during your life. Is there something that you can do *as a category* that would help you deal with that." And the answer is yeah, there is in fact. And that's what a lot of religious stories and symbolic stories are trying to propose to you, is the solution to that. One is, approach it voluntarily. Carefully, but voluntarily. Don't freeze and run away. Explore, instead. You expose yourself to risk but you gain knowledge. And you wouldn't have a cortex which, you know, is ridiculously disproportionate, if as a species we hadn't decided that exploration trumps escape or freezing. We explore. That can make you the master of a situation, so you can be the master of something like fire without being terrified of it. One of the things that the Hindus do in relationship to Kali, is offer sacrifices. So you can say, well why would you offer sacrifices to something you're afraid of. And it's because that is what you do, that's always what you do. You offer up sacrifices to the unknown in the hope that good things will happen to you. One example is that you're worried about your future. Maybe you're worried about your job, or who you're going to marry, or your family, there's a whole category of things to be worried about, so you're worried about your future. SO what're you doing in university? And the answer is you're sacrificing your free time in the present, to the cosmos so to speak, in the hope that if you offer up that sacrifice properly, the future will smile upon you. And that's one of the fundamental discoveries of the human race. And it's a big deal, that discovery: by changing what you cling to in the present, you can alter the future.
Jordan B. Peterson
I took the sleeper out of Glasgow, and as the smelly old train bumped out of Central Station and across the Jamaica Street Bridge, I stared out at the orange halogen streetlamps reflected in the black water of the river Clyde. I gazed at the crumbling Victorian buildings that would soon be sandblasted and renovated into yuppie hutches. I watched the revelers and rascals traverse the shiny wet streets. I thought of the thrill and danger of my youth and the fear and frustration of my adult life thus far. I thought of the failure of my marriage and my failures as a man. I saw all this through my reflection in the nighttime window. Down the tracks I went, hardly aware that I was going further south with every passing second.
Craig Ferguson (American on Purpose: The Improbable Adventures of an Unlikely Patriot)
The next time you check the box “S” for single, remember this: singleness is no longer a lack of options but a choice—a choice to refuse to let your life be defined by your relationship status and to live every day Happily and let your Ever After work itself out. Whether or not you have someone in the passenger seat, you are still the driver of your own life and can take whatever road you choose. So the next time you hit a speed bump, otherwise known as the age-old question, “Why are you still single?” look ’em in the eye and say, “Because I’m too strong, too smart, and too fabulous to settle.
Mandy Hale (The Single Woman: Life, Love, and a Dash of Sass)
It was Valentine's Day and I had spent the day in bed with my life partner, Ketel One. The two of us watched a romance movie marathon on TBS Superstation that made me wonder how people who write romantic comedies can sleep at night. At some point during almost every romantic comedy, the female lead suddenly trips and falls, stumbling helplessly over something ridiculous like a leaf, and then some Matthew McConaughey type either whips around the corner just in the nick of time to save her or is clumsily pulled down along with her. That event predictably leads to the magical moment of their first kiss. Please. I fall all-the-time. You know who comes and gets me? The bouncer. Then, within the two hour time frame of the movie, the couple meet, fall in love, fall out of love, break up, and then just before the end of the movie, they happen to bump into each other by "coincidence" somewhere absolutely absurd, like by the river. This never happens in real life. The last time I bumped into an ex-boyfriend was at three o'clock in the morning at Rite Aid. I was ringing up Gas-X and corn removers.
Chelsea Handler (My Horizontal Life: A Collection of One-Night Stands)
Imagine walking along a sidewalk with your arms full of groceries, and someone roughly bumps into you so that you fall and your groceries are strewn over the ground. As you rise up from the puddle of broken eggs and tomato juice, you are ready to shout out, 'You idiot! What's wrong with you? Are you blind?' But just before you can catch your breath to speak, you see that the person who bumped into you is actually blind. He, too, is sprawled in the spilled groceries, and your anger vanishes in an instant, to be replaced by sympathetic concern: 'Are you hurt? Can I help you up?' Our situation is like that. When we clearly realize that the source of disharmony and misery in the world is ignorance, we can open the door of wisdom and compassion.
B. Alan Wallace (Tibetan Buddhism from the Ground Up: A Practical Approach for Modern Life)
The thing is, you're beautiful. Yes, you… In your wild, mundane glory. Your daily life hides from you the possibilities of why you’re here And who you are. But never forget that every breath you take is actual alchemy. With your eyes you record visions of this place. With your fingertips you read the bumps in life, Sending messages back from whence you came. You’re a soul traveler, An explorer. You make this place home for now; Trying on the costumes, Playing out your roles. Every so often, take off your masks. Drop your robes. See yourself reflected in the very mirror of your life. And remember… When you leave this stage, The only thing you will wonder is, “Did I love brilliantly?
Jacob Nordby
That was how I’d always imagined the surface of my heart—smooth, slick, unattached. Nothing to grab on to. Unscored. No one could attach to me once the inevitable heat of life bore down. I suspected the metaphor went deeper still—that I was afraid of marring my heart with the scoring that arose naturally between people, the inevitable bumping against other people’s desires, demands, pettiness, preferences, and all the quotidian negotiations that made up a relationship. Scoring was required for attachment, and my heart lacked the grooves.
Christie Tate (Group: How One Therapist and a Circle of Strangers Saved My Life)
Those of us who are in tune with nature and animals know it is our way of life, Bram. There is a connection to all living things, a vibration of Life. Animals were not given a power of choice. A lion does not try and eat legumes, nor an elephant meat. We believe the best way to communicate with nature, God, is through a liaison: the animals..... Nature hears one voice and obeys it. That is why ten or ten thousand birds may rise from the surface of a lake at the same time and yet never touch one another. Man only hears his own voice. He constantly bumps into another. Even his voice mirrors his erratic walk, jealousy, hate, ego, pride, lying, cheating. He makes his own judgements and falls prey to his greed. Remember, the moon is reflected on one drop of water as is the entire ocean-- so it is with God. He is reflected ins each living thing-- in a grain of sand as the entire shore, one star as the whole universe. Each animal as in all creatures. -Jagrat
Ralph Helfer (Modoc: The True Story of the Greatest Elephant That Ever Lived)
My delightful, my love, my life, I don’t understand anything: how can you not be with me? I’m so infinitely used to you that I now feel myself lost and empty: without you, my soul. You turn my life into something light, amazing, rainbowed—you put a glint of happiness on everything—always different: sometimes you can be smoky-pink, downy, sometimes dark, winged—and I don’t know when I love your eyes more—when they are open or shut. It’s eleven p.m. now: I’m trying with all the force of my soul to see you through space; my thoughts plead for a heavenly visa to Berlin via air . . . My sweet excitement . . . Today I can’t write about anything except my longing for you. I’m gloomy and fearful: silly thoughts are swarming—that you’ll stumble as you jump out of a carriage in the underground, or that someone will bump into you in the street . . . I don’t know how I’ll survive the week. My tenderness, my happiness, what words can I write for you? How strange that although my life’s work is moving a pen over paper, I don’t know how to tell you how I love, how I desire you. Such agitation—and such divine peace: melting clouds immersed in sunshine—mounds of happiness. And I am floating with you, in you, aflame and melting—and a whole life with you is like the movement of clouds, their airy, quiet falls, their lightness and smoothness, and the heavenly variety of outline and tint—my inexplicable love. I cannot express these cirrus-cumulus sensations. When you and I were at the cemetery last time, I felt it so piercingly and clearly: you know it all, you know what will happen after death—you know it absolutely simply and calmly—as a bird knows that, fluttering from a branch, it will fly and not fall down . . . And that’s why I am so happy with you, my lovely, my little one. And here’s more: you and I are so special; the miracles we know, no one knows, and no one loves the way we love. What are you doing now? For some reason I think you’re in the study: you’ve got up, walked to the door, you are pulling the door wings together and pausing for a moment—waiting to see if they’ll move apart again. I’m tired, I’m terribly tired, good night, my joy. Tomorrow I’ll write you about all kinds of everyday things. My love.
Vladimir Nabokov (Letters to Vera)
When a film's heroine innocently coughs, you know that two scenes later, at most, she'll be in an oxygen tent; when a man bumps into a woman at the train station, you know that man will become the woman's lover and/or murderer. In everyday life, where we cough often and are always bumping into people, our daily actions rarely reverberate so lucidly. Once we love or hate someone, we can think back and remember that first casual encounter. But what of all the chance meetings that nothing ever comes of? While our bodies move ever forward on the time line, our minds continuously trace backward, seeking shape and meaning as deftly as any arrow seeking its mark.
Lucy Grealy (Autobiography of a Face)
So here we are, in the family planning aisle with a cart full of sports drinks and our hands full of . . . “Trojans, Ramses, Magnum . . . Jeez, these are worse than names for muscle cars,” Jase observes, sliding his finger along the display. “They do sound sorta, well, forceful.” I flip over the box I’m holding to read the instructions. Jase glances up to smile at me. “Don’t worry, Sam. It’s just us.” “I don’t get what half these descriptions mean . . . What’s a vibrating ring?” “Sounds like the part that breaks on the washing machine. What’s extra-sensitive? That sounds like how we describe George.” I’m giggling. “Okay, would that be better or worse than ‘ultimate feeling’—and look—there’s ‘shared pleasure’ condoms and ‘her pleasure’ condoms. But there’s no ‘his pleasure.’” “I’m pretty sure that comes with the territory,” Jase says dryly. “Put down those Technicolor ones. No freaking way.” “But blue’s my favorite color,” I say, batting my eyelashes at him. “Put them down. The glow-in-the-dark ones too. Jesus. Why do they even make those?” “For the visually impaired?” I ask, reshelving the boxes. We move to the checkout line. “Enjoy the rest of your evening,” the clerk calls as we leave. “Do you think he knew?” I ask. “You’re blushing again,” Jase mutters absently. “Did who know what?” “The sales guy. Why we were buying these?” A smile pulls at the corners of his mouth. “Of course not. I’m sure it never occurred to him that we were actually buying birth control for ourselves. I bet he thought it was a . . . a . . . housewarming gift.” Okay, I’m ridiculous. “Or party favors,” I laugh. “Or”—he scrutinized the receipt—“supplies for a really expensive water balloon fight.” “Visual aids for health class?” I slip my hand into the back pocket of Jase’s jeans. “Or little raincoats for . . .” He pauses, stumped. “Barbie dolls,” I suggest. “G.I. Joes,” he corrects, and slips his free hand into the back pocket of my jeans, bumping his hip against mine as we head back to the car.
Huntley Fitzpatrick (My Life Next Door)
He pulled me toward him so that I was resting on my side. I coughed up some more water. He took off his wet shirt and folded it. Then he gently lifted me and placed it under my sore head, which hurt too much to appreciate his…bronzed…sculpted…muscular…bare chest. Well I guess I must be okay if I can appreciate the view, I thought. Sheesh, I’d have to be dead not to appreciate it. I winced as Ren’s hand brushed against my head, shaking me from my reverie. “You’ve got a major bump here.” I reached up to feel the giant lump on the back of my skull. I gingerly touched it and recalled the source of my headache. I must have lost consciousness when the rock hit me. Ren saved my life. Again. I looked up at him. He was kneeling next to me with a look of desperation on his face, and his body was shaking. I realized that he must have changed to a man, dragged me out of the pool, and then remained by my side until I woke up. Who knows how long I’ve been laying here unconscious. “Ren, you’re in pain. You’ve been in this form too long today.” He shook his head in denial, but I saw him grit his teeth. I pressed my hand on his arm. “I’ll be okay. It’s just a bump on the head. Don’t worry about me. I’m sure Mr. Kadam has some aspirin tucked away in the backpack. I’ll just take that and lie down to rest for a while. I’ll be alright.” He trailed his finger slowly from my temple to my cheek and smiled softly. When he pulled back, his whole arm shook and tremors rippled under the surface of his skin. “Kells, I-“ His face tightened. He threw his head to the side, snarled angrily, and morphed to a tiger again. He softly growled, then quieted, and drew close beside me. He lay down next to me and watched me carefully with his alert blue eyes. I stroked his back, partly to reassure him and partly because it soothed me too.
Colleen Houck (Tiger's Curse (The Tiger Saga, #1))
Why is it so important for me to forgive that son-of-a-bitch? I’m not the one at fault here. It shouldn’t be about me. He’s the one that did wrong. Screw his feelings. He should feel like he’s hated for what he did.” Lisa added another used tissue to the growing pile on the table. Lyn warmly smiled. “Forgiving Byron isn’t for his sake, it’s for yours. The block in your life’s road can only be removed if you forgive him for what he did. If you don’t, you’ll just keep bumping into that block again and again. The life you live will be miserable. You’ll never be able to break the chains of the past.” Lisa listened and let the words sink into her subconscious. She realized the only way to get to the end of the road was to take the first step. There was a block preventing her from moving forward in life. She had to find a way past it.
Dane Hatchell (Resurrection X)
At one point I was climbing off the bus and I bumped into a woman in a crisp black blazer and pointy, witchy shoes. She had a bulky cell phone pressed against her ear and a black bag with gold Prada lettering hooked around her wrist. I was a long ways off from worshiping at the Céline, Chloé, or Goyard thrones, but I certainly recognized Prada. “Sorry,” I said, and took a step away from her. She nodded at me briskly but never stopped speaking into her phone, “The samples need to be there by Friday.” As her heels snapped away on the pavement, I thought, There is no way that woman can ever get hurt. She had more important things to worry about than whether or not she would have to eat lunch alone. The samples had to arrive by Friday. And as I thought about all the other things that must make up her busy, important life, the cocktail parties and the sessions with the personal trainer and the shopping for crisp, Egyptian cotton sheets, there it started, my concrete and skyscraper wanderlust. I saw how there was a protection in success, and success was defined by threatening the minion on the other end of a cell phone, expensive pumps terrorizing the city, people stepping out of your way simply because you looked like you had more important places to be than they did. Somewhere along the way, a man got tangled up in this definition too. I just had to get to that, I decided, and no one could hurt me again.
Jessica Knoll (Luckiest Girl Alive)
I pointed to the balled-up socks. “Look at them carefully. This should be a time for them to rest. Do you really think they can get any rest like that?” That’s right. The socks and stockings stored in your drawer are essentially on holiday. They take a brutal beating in their daily work, trapped between your foot and your shoe, enduring pressure and friction to protect your precious feet. The time they spend in your drawer is their only chance to rest. But if they are folded over, balled up, or tied, they are always in a state of tension, their fabric stretched and their elastic pulled. They roll about and bump into each other every time the drawer is opened and closed. Any socks and stockings unfortunate enough to get pushed to the back of the drawer are often forgotten for so long that their elastic stretches beyond recovery.
Marie Kondō (The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up: The Japanese Art of Decluttering and Organizing (Magic Cleaning #1))
I could have made analytical comparisons with kisses I’d had from other boys, trying to work out just why Gideon did it so much better. I might also have stopped to remember that there was a wall between us, and a confessional window through which Gideon had squeezed his head and arms, and these were not the ideal conditions for kissing. Quite apart from the fact that I could do without any more chaos in my life, after discovering only two days ago that I’d inherited my family’s time-traveling gene. The fact was, however, that I hadn’t been thinking anything at all, except maybe oh and hmm and more! That’s why I hadn’t noticed the flip-flop sensation inside me, and only new, when the little gargoyle folded his arms and flashed his eyes at me from his pew, only when I saw the confessional curtain—brown, although it had been green velvet a moment ago—did I work it out that meanwhile we’d traveled back to the present. “Hell!” Gideon moved back to his side of the confessional and rubbed the back of his head. Hell? I came down from cloud nine with a bump and forgot the gargoyle. “Oh, I didn’t think it was that bad,” I said, trying to sound as casual as possible. Unfortunately, I was rather breathless, which tended to spoil the effect. I couldn’t look Gideon in the eye, so instead I kept staring at the brown polyester curtain in the confessional.
Kerstin Gier
There is a unique bond between the land and the people in the Crescent City. Everyone here came from somewhere else, the muddy brown current of life prying them loose from their homeland and sweeping them downstream, bumping and scraping, until they got caught by the horseshoe bend that is New Orleans. Not so much as a single pebble ‘came’ from New Orleans, any more than any of the people did. Every grain of sand, every rock, every drip of brown mud, and every single person walking, living and loving in the city is a refugee from somewhere else. But they made something unique, the people and the land, when they came together in that cohesive, magnetic, magical spot; this sediment of society made something that is not French, not Spanish, and incontrovertibly not American.
James Caskey (The Haunted History of New Orleans: Ghosts of the French Quarter)
Sparks come from the very source of light and are made of the purest brightness—so say the oldest legends. When a human Being is to be born, a spark begins to fall. First it flies through the darkness of outer space, then through galaxies, and finally, before it falls here, to Earth, the poor thing bumps into the orbits of planets. Each of them contaminates the spark with some Properties, while it darkens and fades. First Pluto draws the frame for this cosmic experiment and reveals its basic principles—life is a fleeting incident, followed by death, which will one day let the spark escape from the trap; there’s no other way out. Life is like an extremely demanding testing ground. From now on everything you do will count, every thought and every deed, but not for you to be punished or rewarded afterward, but because it is they that build your world. This is how the machine works. As it continues to fall, the spark crosses Neptune’s belt and is lost in its foggy vapors. As consolation Neptune gives it all sorts of illusions, a sleepy memory of its exodus, dreams about flying, fantasy, narcotics and books. Uranus equips it with the capacity for rebellion; from now on that will be proof of the memory of where the spark is from. As the spark passes the rings of Saturn, it becomes clear that waiting for it at the bottom is a prison. A labor camp, a hospital, rules and forms, a sickly body, fatal illness, the death of a loved one. But Jupiter gives it consolation, dignity and optimism, a splendid gift: things-will-work-out. Mars adds strength and aggression, which are sure to be of use. As it flies past the Sun, it is blinded, and all that it has left of its former, far-reaching consciousness is a small, stunted Self, separated from the rest, and so it will remain. I imagine it like this: a small torso, a crippled being with its wings torn off, a Fly tormented by cruel children; who knows how it will survive in the Gloom. Praise the Goddesses, now Venus stands in the way of its Fall. From her the spark gains the gift of love, the purest sympathy, the only thing that can save it and other sparks; thanks to the gifts of Venus they will be able to unite and support each other. Just before the Fall it catches on a small, strange planet that resembles a hypnotized Rabbit, and doesn’t turn on its own axis, but moves rapidly, staring at the Sun. This is Mercury, who gives it language, the capacity to communicate. As it passes the Moon, it gains something as intangible as the soul. Only then does it fall to Earth, and is immediately clothed in a body. Human, animal or vegetable. That’s the way it is. —
Olga Tokarczuk (Drive Your Plow Over the Bones of the Dead)
He’s brought a sleeping bag, one of those big green bulky L.L. Bean ones. I look at it questioningly. Following my gaze, he turns red. “I told my parents I was going to help you study, then we might watch a movie, and if it got late enough, I’d crash on your living room floor.” “And they said?” “Mom said, ‘Have a nice time, dear.’ Dad just looked at me.” “Embarrassing much?” “Worth it.” He walks slowly over, his eyes locked on mine, then puts his hands around my waist. “Um. So . . . are we going to study?” My tone’s deliberately casual. Jase slides his thumbs behind my ears, rubbing the hollow at their base. He’s only inches from my face, still looking into my eyes. “You bet. I’m studying you.” He scans over me, slowly, then returns to my eyes. “You have little flecks of gold in the middle of the blue.” He bends forward and touches his lips to one eyelid, then the other, then moves back. “And your eyelashes aren’t blond at all, they’re brown. And . . .” He steps back a little, smiling slowly at me. “You’re already blushing—here”—his lips touch the pulse at the hollow of my throat—“and probably here . . .” The thumb that brushes against my breast feels warm even through my T-shirt. In the movies, clothes just melt away when the couple is ready to make love. They’re all golden and backlit with the soundtrack soaring. In real life, it just isn’t like that. Jase has to take off his shirt and fumbles with his belt buckle and I hop around the room pulling off my socks, wondering just how unsexy that is. People in movies don’t even have socks. When Jase pulls off his jeans, change he has in his pocket slips out and clatters and rolls across the floor. “Sorry!” he says, and we both freeze, even though no one’s home to hear the sound. In movies, no one ever gets self-conscious at this point, thinking they should have brushed their teeth. In movies, it’s all beautifully choreographed, set to an increasingly dramatic soundtrack. In movies, when the boy pulls the girl to him when they are both finally undressed, they never bump their teeth together and get embarrassed and have to laugh and try again. But here’s the truth: In movies, it’s never half so lovely as it is here and now with Jase.
Huntley Fitzpatrick (My Life Next Door)
As I speak, his fingers trail down my arm. I’m just so relieved he’s willing to touch me after I’ve told him this. He turns my hand over and traces the fine lines on my palm. “And?” He looks up beneath heavy lids. “What else should I know about you?” “My skin—” I stop, swallow. He leans down, presses his lips to my wrist in a feathery kiss. “What about your skin?” “You know. You’ve seen it,” I rasp. “It changes. The color becomes—” “Like fire.” His gaze lifts from my wrist and he says that word he said so long ago surrounded in cold mists, tucked on a ledge above a whispering pool of water. “Beautiful.” “You said that before. In the mountains.” “I meant it. Still do.” I laugh weakly. “I guess this means you’re not mad at me.” “I would be mad, if I could.” He frowns. “I should be.” He inches closer to me on the couch. We sink deeper into the tired cushions. “This is impossible.” “This what?” I clutch the collar of his shirt in my fingers. His face is so close I study the varying color of his eyes. For a long time, he says nothing. Stares at me in that way that makes me want to squirm. For a moment, it seems that his irises glow and the pupils shrink to slits. Then, he mutters, “A hunter in love with his prey.” My chest squeezes. I suck in a breath. Pretty wonderful, I think, but am too embarrassed to say it. Even after what he just admitted. He loves me? Studying him, I let myself consider this and whether he can possibly mean it. But what else could it be? What else could drive him to this moment with me? To turn his back on his family’s way of life? As he looks at me in that desperate, devouring way, I’m reminded of those moments in his car when he tended the cut on my palm and ran his hand over my leg. My belly twists. I glance around, see how seriously, dangerously alone we are. More alone than in the stairwell. Or even the first time together, on that ledge. I lick my lips. Now we’re alone with no school bell ready to rip us apart. Even more alarming, no more secrets stand between us. No barriers. Nothing to stop us at all. I hold my breath until I feel the first press of his lips, certain I’ve never been this close to another soul, this vulnerable. We kiss until we’re both breathless, warm and flushed, twisting against each other on the couch. His hands brush my bare back beneath my shirt, trace every bump of my spine. My back tingles, wings vibrating just beneath the surface. I drink the cooler air from his lips, drawing it into my fiery lungs. I don’t even mind when he stops and watches my skin change colors, or touches my face as it blurs in and out. He kisses my changing face. Cheeks, nose, the corners of my eyes, sighing my name it like a benediction between each caress. His lips slide to my neck and I moan, arch, lost to everything but him. In this, with him . . . I’m as close to the sky as I’ve ever been.
Sophie Jordan (Firelight (Firelight, #1))
Oh I could be out, rollicking in the ripeness of my flesh and others’, could be drinking things and eating things and rubbing mine against theirs, speculating about this person or that, waving, indicating hello with a sudden upward jutting of my chin, sitting in the backseat of someone else’s car, bumping up and down the San Francisco hills, south of Market, seeing people attacking their instruments, afterward stopping at a bodega, parking, carrying the bottles in a paper bag, the glass clinking, all our faces bright, glowing under streetlamps, down the sidewalk to this or that apartment party, hi, hi, putting the bottles in the fridge, removing one for now, hating the apartment, checking the view, sitting on the arm of a couch and being told not to, and then waiting for the bathroom, staring idly at that ubiquitous Ansel Adams print, Yosemite, talking to a short-haired girl while waiting in the hallway, talking about teeth, no reason really, the train of thought unclear, asking to see her fillings, no, really, I’ll show you mine first, ha ha, then no, you go ahead, I’ll go after you, then, after using the bathroom she is still there, still in the hallway, she was waiting not just for the bathroom but for me, and so eventually we’ll go home together, her apartment, where she lives alone, in a wide, immaculate railroad type place, newly painted, decorated with her mother, then sleeping in her oversized, oversoft white bed, eating breakfast in her light-filled nook, then maybe to the beach for a few hours with the Sunday paper, then wandering home whenever, never- Fuck. We don't even have a baby-sitter.
Dave Eggers (A Heartbreaking Work of Staggering Genius)
We began before words, and we will end beyond them. It sometimes seems to me that our days are poisoned with too many words. Words said and not meant. Words said ‘and’ meant. Words divorced from feeling. Wounding words. Words that conceal. Words that reduce. Dead words. If only words were a kind of fluid that collects in the ears, if only they turned into the visible chemical equivalent of their true value, an acid, or something curative – then we might be more careful. Words do collect in us anyway. They collect in the blood, in the soul, and either transform or poison people’s lives. Bitter or thoughtless words poured into the ears of the young have blighted many lives in advance. We all know people whose unhappy lives twist on a set of words uttered to them on a certain unforgotten day at school, in childhood, or at university. We seem to think that words aren’t things. A bump on the head may pass away, but a cutting remark grows with the mind. But then it is possible that we know all too well the awesome power of words – which is why we use them with such deadly and accurate cruelty. We are all wounded inside one way or other. We all carry unhappiness within us for some reason or other. Which is why we need a little gentleness and healing from one another. Healing in words, and healing beyond words. Like gestures. Warm gestures. Like friendship, which will always be a mystery. Like a smile, which someone described as the shortest distance between two people. Yes, the highest things are beyond words. That is probably why all art aspires to the condition of wordlessness. When literature works on you, it does so in silence, in your dreams, in your wordless moments. Good words enter you and become moods, become the quiet fabric of your being. Like music, like painting, literature too wants to transcend its primary condition and become something higher. Art wants to move into silence, into the emotional and spiritual conditions of the world. Statues become melodies, melodies become yearnings, yearnings become actions. When things fall into words they usually descend. Words have an earthly gravity. But the best things in us are those that escape the gravity of our deaths. Art wants to pass into life, to lift it; art wants to enchant, to transform, to make life more meaningful or bearable in its own small and mysterious way. The greatest art was probably born from a profound and terrible silence – a silence out of which the greatest enigmas of our life cry: Why are we here? What is the point of it all? How can we know peace and live in joy? Why be born in order to die? Why this difficult one-way journey between the two mysteries? Out of the wonder and agony of being come these cries and questions and the endless stream of words with which to order human life and quieten the human heart in the midst of our living and our distress. The ages have been inundated with vast oceans of words. We have been virtually drowned in them. Words pour at us from every angle and corner. They have not brought understanding, or peace, or healing, or a sense of self-mastery, nor has the ocean of words given us the feeling that, at least in terms of tranquility, the human spirit is getting better. At best our cry for meaning, for serenity, is answered by a greater silence, the silence that makes us seek higher reconciliation. I think we need more of the wordless in our lives. We need more stillness, more of a sense of wonder, a feeling for the mystery of life. We need more love, more silence, more deep listening, more deep giving.
Ben Okri (Birds of Heaven)
We come into contact with people only with our exteriors—physically and externally; yet each of us walks about with a great wealth of interior life, a private and secret self. We are, in reality, somewhat split in two, the self and the body; the one hidden, the other open. The child learns very quickly to cultivate this private self because it puts a barrier between him and the demands of the world. He learns he can keep secrets—at first an excruciating, intolerable burden: it seems that the outer world has every right to penetrate into his self and that the parents could automatically do so if they wished—they always seem to know just what he is thinking and feeling. But then he discovers that he can lie and not be found out: it is a great and liberating moment, this anxious first lie—it represents the staking out of his claim to an integral inner self, free from the prying eyes of the world. By the time we grow up we become masters at dissimulation, at cultivating a self that the world cannot probe. But we pay a price. After years of turning people away, of protecting our inner self, of cultivating it by living in a different world, of furnishing this world with our fantasies and dreams—we find that we are hopelessly separated from everyone else. We have become victims of our own art. We touch people on the outsides of their bodies, and they us, but we cannot get at their insides and cannot reveal our insides to them. This is one of the great tragedies of our interiority—it is utterly personal and unrevealable. Often we want to say something unusually intimate to a spouse, a parent, a friend, communicate something of how we are really feeling about a sunset, who we really feel we are—only to fall strangely and miserably flat. Once in a great while we succeed, sometimes more with one person, less or never with others. But the occasional breakthrough only proves the rule. You reach out with a disclosure, fail, and fall back bitterly into yourself. We emit huge globs of love to our parents and spouses, and the glob slithers away in exchanges of words that are somehow beside the point of what we are trying to say. People seem to keep bumping up against each other with their exteriors and falling away from each other. The cartoonist Jules Feiffer is the modern master of this aspect of the human tragedy. Take even the sexual act—the most intimate merger given to organisms. For most people, even for their entire lives, it is simply a joining of exteriors. The insides melt only in the moment of orgasm, but even this is brief, and a melting is not a communication. It is a physical overcoming of separateness, not a symbolic revelation and justification of one’s interior. Many people pursue sex precisely because it is a mystique of the overcoming of the separateness of the inner world; and they go from one partner to another because they can never quite achieve “it.” So the endless interrogations: “What are you thinking about right now—me? Do you feel what I feel? Do you love me?
Ernest Becker (The Birth and Death of Meaning: An Interdisciplinary Perspective on the Problem of Man)
Antidepression medication is temperamental. Somewhere around fifty-nine or sixty I noticed the drug I’d been taking seemed to have stopped working. This is not unusual. The drugs interact with your body chemistry in different ways over time and often need to be tweaked. After the death of Dr. Myers, my therapist of twenty-five years, I’d been seeing a new doctor whom I’d been having great success with. Together we decided to stop the medication I’d been on for five years and see what would happen... DEATH TO MY HOMETOWN!! I nose-dived like the diving horse at the old Atlantic City steel pier into a sloshing tub of grief and tears the likes of which I’d never experienced before. Even when this happens to me, not wanting to look too needy, I can be pretty good at hiding the severity of my feelings from most of the folks around me, even my doctor. I was succeeding well with this for a while except for one strange thing: TEARS! Buckets of ’em, oceans of ’em, cold, black tears pouring down my face like tidewater rushing over Niagara during any and all hours of the day. What was this about? It was like somebody opened the floodgates and ran off with the key. There was NO stopping it. 'Bambi' tears... 'Old Yeller' tears... 'Fried Green Tomatoes' tears... rain... tears... sun... tears... I can’t find my keys... tears. Every mundane daily event, any bump in the sentimental road, became a cause to let it all hang out. It would’ve been funny except it wasn’t. Every meaningless thing became the subject of a world-shattering existential crisis filling me with an awful profound foreboding and sadness. All was lost. All... everything... the future was grim... and the only thing that would lift the burden was one-hundred-plus on two wheels or other distressing things. I would be reckless with myself. Extreme physical exertion was the order of the day and one of the few things that helped. I hit the weights harder than ever and paddleboarded the equivalent of the Atlantic, all for a few moments of respite. I would do anything to get Churchill’s black dog’s teeth out of my ass. Through much of this I wasn’t touring. I’d taken off the last year and a half of my youngest son’s high school years to stay close to family and home. It worked and we became closer than ever. But that meant my trustiest form of self-medication, touring, was not at hand. I remember one September day paddleboarding from Sea Bright to Long Branch and back in choppy Atlantic seas. I called Jon and said, “Mr. Landau, book me anywhere, please.” I then of course broke down in tears. Whaaaaaaaaaa. I’m surprised they didn’t hear me in lower Manhattan. A kindly elderly woman walking her dog along the beach on this beautiful fall day saw my distress and came up to see if there was anything she could do. Whaaaaaaaaaa. How kind. I offered her tickets to the show. I’d seen this symptom before in my father after he had a stroke. He’d often mist up. The old man was usually as cool as Robert Mitchum his whole life, so his crying was something I loved and welcomed. He’d cry when I’d arrive. He’d cry when I left. He’d cry when I mentioned our old dog. I thought, “Now it’s me.” I told my doc I could not live like this. I earned my living doing shows, giving interviews and being closely observed. And as soon as someone said “Clarence,” it was going to be all over. So, wisely, off to the psychopharmacologist he sent me. Patti and I walked in and met a vibrant, white-haired, welcoming but professional gentleman in his sixties or so. I sat down and of course, I broke into tears. I motioned to him with my hand; this is it. This is why I’m here. I can’t stop crying! He looked at me and said, “We can fix this.” Three days and a pill later the waterworks stopped, on a dime. Unbelievable. I returned to myself. I no longer needed to paddle, pump, play or challenge fate. I didn’t need to tour. I felt normal.
Bruce Springsteen (Born to Run)
And are we not guilty of offensive disparagement in calling chess a game? Is it not also a science and an art, hovering between those categories as Muhammad’s coffin hovered between heaven and earth, a unique link between pairs of opposites: ancient yet eternally new; mechanical in structure, yet made effective only by the imagination; limited to a geometrically fixed space, yet with unlimited combinations; constantly developing, yet sterile; thought that leads nowhere; mathematics calculating nothing; art without works of art; architecture without substance – but nonetheless shown to be more durable in its entity and existence than all books and works of art; the only game that belongs to all nations and all eras, although no one knows what god brought it down to earth to vanquish boredom, sharpen the senses and stretch the mind. Where does it begin and where does it end? Every child can learn its basic rules, every bungler can try his luck at it, yet within that immutable little square it is able to bring forth a particular species of masters who cannot be compared to anyone else, people with a gift solely designed for chess, geniuses in their specific field who unite vision, patience and technique in just the same proportions as do mathematicians, poets, musicians, but in different stratifications and combinations. In the old days of the enthusiasm for physiognomy, a physician like Gall might perhaps have dissected a chess champion’s brain to find out whether some particular twist or turn in the grey matter, a kind of chess muscle or chess bump, is more developed in such chess geniuses than in the skulls of other mortals. And how intrigued such a physiognomist would have been by the case of Czentovic, where that specific genius appeared in a setting of absolute intellectual lethargy, like a single vein of gold in a hundredweight of dull stone. In principle, I had always realized that such a unique, brilliant game must create its own matadors, but how difficult and indeed impossible it is to imagine the life of an intellectually active human being whose world is reduced entirely to the narrow one-way traffic between black and white, who seeks the triumphs of his life in the mere movement to and fro, forward and back of thirty-two chessmen, someone to whom a new opening, moving knight rather than pawn, is a great deed, and his little corner of immortality is tucked away in a book about chess – a human being, an intellectual human being who constantly bends the entire force of his mind on the ridiculous task of forcing a wooden king into the corner of a wooden board, and does it without going mad!
Stefan Zweig (Chess)
Astarte has come again, more powerful than before. She possesses me. She lies in wait for me. December 97 My cruelty has also returned: the cruelty which frightens me. It lies dormant for months, for years, and then all at once awakens, bursts forth and - once the crisis is over - leaves me in mortal terror of myself. Just now in the avenue of the Bois, I whipped my dog till he bled, and for nothing - for not coming immediately when I called! The poor animal was there before me, his spine arched, cowering close to the ground, with his great, almost human, eyes fixed on me... and his lamentable howling! It was as though he were waiting for the butcher! But it was as if a kind of drunkenness had possessed me. The more I struck out the more I wanted to strike; every shudder of that quivering flesh filled me with some incomprehensible ardour. A circle of onlookers formed around me, and I only stopped myself for the sake of my self-respect. Afterwards, I was ashamed. I am always ashamed of myself nowadays. The pulse of life has always filled me with a peculiar rage to destroy. When I think of two beings in love, I experience an agonising sensation; by virtue of some bizarre backlash, there is something which smothers and oppresses me, and I suffocate, to the point of anguish. Whenever I wake up in the middle of the night to the muted hubbub of bumps and voices which suddenly become perceptible in the dormant city - all the cries of sexual excitement and sensuality which are the nocturnal respiration of cities - I feel weak. They rise up around me, submerging me in a sluggish flux of embraces and a tide of spasms. A crushing weight presses down on my chest; a cold sweat breaks out on my brow and my heart is heavy - so heavy that I have to get up, run bare-foot and breathless, to my window, and open both shutters, trying desperately to breathe. What an atrocious sensation it is! It is as if two arms of steel bear down upon my shoulders and a kind of hunger hollows out my stomach, tearing apart my whole being! A hunger to exterminate love. Oh, those nights! The long hours I have spent at my window, bent over the immobile trees of the square and the paving-stones of the deserted street, on watch in the silence of the city, starting at the least noise! The nights I have passed, my heart hammering in anguish, wretchedly and impatiently waiting for my torment to consent to leave me, and for my desire to fold up the heavy wings which beat inside the walls of my being like the wings of some great fluttering bird! Oh, my cruel and interminable nights of impotent rebellion against the rutting of Paris abed: those nights when I would have liked to embrace all the bodies, to suck in all the breaths and sup all the mouths... those nights which would find me, in the morning, prostrate on the carpet, scratching it still with inert and ineffectual fingers... fingers which never know anything but emptiness, whose nails are still taut with the passion of murder twenty-four hours after the crises... nails which I will one day end up plunging into the satined flesh of a neck, and... It is quite clear, you see, that I am possessed by a demon... a demon which doctors would treat with some bromide or with all-healing sal ammoniac! As if medicines could ever be imagined to be effective against such evil!
Jean Lorrain (Monsieur De Phocas)