Night Ride Quotes

We've searched our database for all the quotes and captions related to Night Ride. Here they are! All 200 of them:

There was a star riding through clouds one night, & I said to the star, 'Consume me'.
Virginia Woolf (The Waves (Annotated))
If you're going to try, go all the way. Otherwise, don't even start. This could mean losing girlfriends, wives, relatives and maybe even your mind. It could mean not eating for three or four days. It could mean freezing on a park bench. It could mean jail. It could mean derision. It could mean mockery--isolation. Isolation is the gift. All the others are a test of your endurance, of how much you really want to do it. And, you'll do it, despite rejection and the worst odds. And it will be better than anything else you can imagine. If you're going to try, go all the way. There is no other feeling like that. You will be alone with the gods, and the nights will flame with fire. You will ride life straight to perfect laughter. It's the only good fight there is.
Charles Bukowski (Factotum)
Asleep by the Smiths Vapour Trail by Ride Scarborough Fair by Simon & Garfunkel A Whiter Shade of Pale by Procol Harum Dear Prudence by the Beatles Gypsy by Suzanne Vega Nights in White Satin by the Moody Blues Daydream by Smashing Pumpkins Dusk by Genesis (before Phil Collins was even in the band!) MLK by U2 Blackbird by the Beatles Landslide by Fleetwood Mac Asleep by the Smiths (again!) -Charlie's mixtape
Stephen Chbosky (The Perks of Being a Wallflower)
Morning would come before we knew it. It always did. But we still had the night, and for now, we were together, so I just closed my eyes and drank it all in.
Sarah Dessen (Along for the Ride)
I once had a dreams of becoming a beautiful poet, but upon an unfortunate series of events some of those dreams dashed and divided like a million stars in the night sky that I wished on over and over again, sparkling and broken. But I didn't really mind, because I knew that it takes getting everything you ever wanted, and then losing it to know what true freedom is.
Lana Del Rey
Every night I used to pray that I’d find my people, and finally I did on the open road. We had nothing to lose, nothing to gain, nothing we desired anymore, except to make our lives into a work of art.
Lana Del Rey
I hear the birds on the summer breeze, I drive fast I am alone in the night Been trying hard not to get into trouble, but I I've got a war in my mind So, I just ride
Lana Del Rey
Like you're riding a train at night across some vast plain, and you catch a glimpse of a tiny light in a window of a farmhouse. In an instant it's sucked back into the darkness behind and vanishes. But if you close your eyes, that point of light stays with you, just barely for a few moments.
Haruki Murakami (Sputnik Sweetheart)
Journey’s end In western lands beneath the Sun The flowers may rise in Spring, The trees may bud, the waters run, The merry finches sing. Or there maybe 'tis cloudless night, And swaying branches bear The Elven-stars as jewels white Amid their branching hair. Though here at journey's end I lie In darkness buried deep, Beyond all towers strong and high, Beyond all mountains steep, Above all shadows rides the Sun And Stars for ever dwell: I will not say the Day is done, Nor bid the Stars farewell.J.
J.R.R. Tolkien
Iggy’s spine tightened, his face like ice. When he’d been at the School, they’d tried to surgically enhance his night vision. Now he was blind forever. Oops.
James Patterson (The Angel Experiment (Maximum Ride, #1))
I'll only be twenty-minute train ride from your school, and I'll make the commute to see you every night. I'd take a commute ten times just to be with you every night.
Stephanie Perkins (Anna and the French Kiss (Anna and the French Kiss, #1))
Keep walking. Hot night right now, right here. All you have is what you are. All you want is much too much. All you get is so much less. All you feel is nothing. All you see is darkness. All you know is senseless and all you can do about it is ride.
Henry Rollins (Eye Scream)
Kindness Before you know what kindness really is you must lose things, feel the future dissolve in a moment like salt in a weakened broth. What you held in your hand, what you counted and carefully saved, all this must go so you know how desolate the landscape can be between the regions of kindness. How you ride and ride thinking the bus will never stop, the passengers eating maize and chicken will stare out the window forever. Before you learn the tender gravity of kindness, you must travel where the Indian in a white poncho lies dead by the side of the road. You must see how this could be you, how he too was someone who journeyed through the night with plans and the simple breath that kept him alive. Before you know kindness as the deepest thing inside, you must know sorrow as the other deepest thing. You must wake up with sorrow. You must speak to it till your voice catches the thread of all sorrows and you see the size of the cloth. Then it is only kindness that makes sense anymore, only kindness that ties your shoes and sends you out into the day to mail letters and purchase bread, only kindness that raises its head from the crowd of the world to say It is I you have been looking for, and then goes with you everywhere like a shadow or a friend.
Naomi Shihab Nye (Words Under the Words: Selected Poems)
There's no one with intelligence in this town except that man over there playing with the children, the one riding the stick horse. He has keen, fiery insight and vast dignity like the night sky, but he conceals it in the madness of child's play.
Rumi (The Essential Rumi)
If wishes were horses, even beggars would ride. (Dark-Hunter)
Sherrilyn Kenyon (Sins of the Night (Dark-Hunter, #7))
There are not many persons who know what wonders are opened to them in the stories and visions of their youth; for when as children we learn and dream, we think but half-formed thoughts, and when as men we try to remember, we are dulled and prosaic with the poison of life. But some of us awake in the night with strange phantasms of enchanted hills and gardens, of fountains that sing in the sun, of golden cliffs overhanging murmuring seas, of plains that stretch down to sleeping cities of bronze and stone, and of shadowy companies of heroes that ride caparisoned white horses along the edges of thick forests; and then we know that we have looked back through the ivory gates into that world of wonder which was ours before we were wise and unhappy.
H.P. Lovecraft
The next morning-at least, I assumed it was morning, since we were all waking up- I felt like one of those twelve dancing princesses, who danced all night, wore holes in their shoes, and had to sleep it off the next day. Except, oh yeah: a)I'm not a princess; b)sleeping in a subway tunnel and having another brain attack aren't that much like dancing all night; and c) my combat boots were still in good shape. Other than that, it was exactly the same.
James Patterson (The Angel Experiment (Maximum Ride #1))
Really, it had been stupid to expect anything anyway. A few late nights does not a habit, or a relationship, make.
Sarah Dessen (Along for the Ride)
Strange memories on this nervous night in Las Vegas. Five years later? Six? It seems like a lifetime, or at least a Main Era—the kind of peak that never comes again. San Francisco in the middle sixties was a very special time and place to be a part of. Maybe it meant something. Maybe not, in the long run . . . but no explanation, no mix of words or music or memories can touch that sense of knowing that you were there and alive in that corner of time and the world. Whatever it meant. . . . History is hard to know, because of all the hired bullshit, but even without being sure of “history” it seems entirely reasonable to think that every now and then the energy of a whole generation comes to a head in a long fine flash, for reasons that nobody really understands at the time—and which never explain, in retrospect, what actually happened. My central memory of that time seems to hang on one or five or maybe forty nights—or very early mornings—when I left the Fillmore half-crazy and, instead of going home, aimed the big 650 Lightning across the Bay Bridge at a hundred miles an hour wearing L. L. Bean shorts and a Butte sheepherder's jacket . . . booming through the Treasure Island tunnel at the lights of Oakland and Berkeley and Richmond, not quite sure which turn-off to take when I got to the other end (always stalling at the toll-gate, too twisted to find neutral while I fumbled for change) . . . but being absolutely certain that no matter which way I went I would come to a place where people were just as high and wild as I was: No doubt at all about that. . . . There was madness in any direction, at any hour. If not across the Bay, then up the Golden Gate or down 101 to Los Altos or La Honda. . . . You could strike sparks anywhere. There was a fantastic universal sense that whatever we were doing was right, that we were winning. . . . And that, I think, was the handle—that sense of inevitable victory over the forces of Old and Evil. Not in any mean or military sense; we didn’t need that. Our energy would simply prevail. There was no point in fighting—on our side or theirs. We had all the momentum; we were riding the crest of a high and beautiful wave. . . . So now, less than five years later, you can go up on a steep hill in Las Vegas and look West, and with the right kind of eyes you can almost see the high-water mark—that place where the wave finally broke and rolled back.
Hunter S. Thompson (Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas)
a happy birthday this evening, I sat by an open window and read till the light was gone and the book was no more than a part of the darkness. I could easily have switched on a lamp, but I wanted to ride the day down into night, to sit alone, and smooth the unreadable page with the pale gray ghost of my hand
Ted Kooser (Delights and Shadows)
So, Angel?" I said, looking over at her. She was gliding through the night, her eight-foot wings looking like a dove's. "Have you picked up anything from Anne, about anything? Anything off?" Not really." Angel thought. "From what I can tell, she does work for the FBI. She does care about us and wants us to be happy. She thinks the boys are slobs. I'm blind," Iggy said irritably. "How am I supposed to make everything all tidy?" Yeah, because you're so handicapped," I said sarcastically. "Like- you can't build bombs or cook or win at Monopoly. You can't tell us apart by the feel of our skin or feathers.
James Patterson (School's Out—Forever (Maximum Ride, #2))
Things could change, Gabe," Jonas went on. "Things could be different. I don't know how, but there must be some way for things to be different. There could be colors. And grandparents," he added, staring through the dimness toward the ceiling of his sleepingroom. "And everybody would have the memories." "You know the memories," he whispered, turning toward the crib. Garbriel's breathing was even and deep. Jonas liked having him there, though he felt guilty about the secret. Each night he gave memories to Gabriel: memories of boat rides and picnics in the sun; memories of soft rainfall against windowpanes; memories of dancing barefoot on a damp lawn. "Gabe?" The newchild stirred slightly in his sleep. Jonas looked over at him. "There could be love," Jonas whispered.
Lois Lowry (The Giver (The Giver, #1))
The rest of the journey passed uneventfully, if you consider it uneventful to ride fifteen miles on horseback through rough country at night, frequently without benefit of roads, in company with kilted men armed to the teeth, and sharing a horse with a wounded man. At least we were not set upon by highwaymen, we encountered no wild beasts, and it didn't rain. By the standards I was becoming used to, it was quite dull.
Diana Gabaldon (Outlander (Outlander, #1))
(Ash used his powers to lift Zarek from the floor and pin him roughly against the ceiling.) Stop pushing your luck, boy. I’ve had it with you. (Acheron) Have you ever thought of hiring yourself out to Disneyland? People would pay a fortune for this ride. (Zarek)
Sherrilyn Kenyon (Night Embrace (Dark-Hunter #2))
What I do know is that when I was sitting with you that night, I felt like God was telling me that I was doing the right thing.
Nicholas Sparks (The Longest Ride)
its been a long night" "aren't they all?
Sarah Dessen (Along for the Ride)
I thought of you with your hair silver as snow all through that cold, slow journey from Sirle. I felt you troubled deep within me, and there was no other place in the world I would rather have been than in the cold night riding to you. When you opened your gates to me, I was home.
Patricia A. McKillip (The Forgotten Beasts of Eld)
He sighed. "You want to live in your church, going about your life as if you're like everyone else." "So?" "You aren't. And because of that, someday you're probably going to find yourself in a position where your choices will have an impact far beyond what you see right now. And when that happens, I want you to remember what it's like to ride through the woods on horseback under a night sky with no moon and nothing stronger than you are. I want you to know so you will fight for it. So that my children will know of it. You have to keep the demons where they are, Rachel. No one else can do it. You won't fight for us unless you know. Let me show you what you're fighting for.
Kim Harrison (Black Magic Sanction (The Hollows, #8))
Great artists make the roads; good teachers and good companions can point them out. But there ain't no free rides, baby. No hitchhiking. And if you want to strike out in any new direction — you go alone. With a machete in your hand and the fear of God in your heart.
Ursula K. Le Guin (The Language of the Night: Essays on Fantasy and Science Fiction)
A word only writes Its night and rides Its dream.
Dejan Stojanovic (Circling: 1978-1987)
I get so god damn lonely and sad and filled with regrets some days. It overwhelms me as I’m sitting on the bus; watching the golden leaves from a window; a sudden burst of realisation in the middle of the night. I can’t help it and I can’t stop it. I’m alone as I’ve always been and sometimes it hurts…. but I’m learning to breathe deep through it and keep walking. I’m learning to make things nice for myself. To comfort my own heart when I wake up sad. To find small bits of friendship in a crowd full of strangers. To find a small moment of joy in a blue sky, in a trip somewhere not so far away, a long walk an early morning in December, or a handwritten letter to an old friend simply saying ”I thought of you. I hope you’re well.” No one will come and save you. No one will come riding on a white horse and take all your worries away. You have to save yourself, little by little, day by day. Build yourself a home. Take care of your body. Find something to work on. Something that makes you excited, something you want to learn. Get yourself some books and learn them by heart. Get to know the author, where he grew up, what books he read himself. Take yourself out for dinner. Dress up for no one but you and simply feel nice. it’s a lovely feeling, to feel pretty. You don’t need anyone to confirm it. I get so god damn lonely and sad and filled with regrets some days, but I’m learning to breathe deep through it and keep walking. I’m learning to make things nice for myself. Slowly building myself a home with things I like. Colors that calm me down, a plan to follow when things get dark, a few people I try to treat right. I don’t sometimes, but it’s my intent to do so. I’m learning.I’m learning to make things nice for myself. I’m learning to save myself. I’m trying, as I always will.
Charlotte Eriksson (Everything Changed When I Forgave Myself: growing up is a wonderful thing to do)
I wanted adventures. I wanted to go up the Nung river to the heart of darkness in Cambodia. I wanted to ride out into a desert on camelback, sand and dunes in every direction, eat whole roasted lamb with my fingers. I wanted to kick snow off my boots in a Mafiya nightclub in Russia. I wanted to play with automatic weapons in Phnom Penh, recapture the past in a small oyster village in France, step into a seedy neon-lit pulqueria in rural Mexico. I wanted to run roadblocks in the middle of the night, blowing past angry militia with a handful of hurled Marlboro packs, experience fear, excitement, wonder. I wanted kicks – the kind of melodramatic thrills and chills I’d yearned for since childhood, the kind of adventure I’d found as a little boy in the pages of my Tintin comic books. I wanted to see the world – and I wanted the world to be just like the movies
Anthony Bourdain (A Cook's Tour: Global Adventures in Extreme Cuisines)
Then it is dark; it is a night where kings in golden suits ride elephants over the mountains.
John Cheever (The Stories of John Cheever)
I can’t function here anymore. I mean in life: I can’t function in this life. I’m no better off than when I was in bed last night, with one difference: when I was in my own bed—or my mom’s—I could do something about it; now that I’m here I can’t do anything. I can’t ride my bike to the Brooklyn Bridge; I can’t take a whole bunch of pills and go for the good sleep; the only thing I can do is crush my head in the toilet seat, and I still don’t even know if that would work. They take away your options and all you can do is live, and it’s just like Humble said: I’m not afraid of dying; I’m afraid of living. I was afraid before, but I’m afraid even more now that I’m a public joke. The teachers are going to hear from the students. They’ll think I’m trying to make an excuse for bad work.
Ned Vizzini (It's Kind of a Funny Story)
Did you think I'd only want you once? Oh, my, you are more naïve than I thought. Why would I go through so much trouble for a mere tryst? Does a man ride a stallion but one time before condemning it to the abattoir?
Nenia Campbell (Terrorscape (Horrorscape, #3))
God, with a wisdom I can't claim to understand, called you home a long time ago, and the tears I shed that night have never seemed to dry.
Nicholas Sparks (The Longest Ride)
Chaol’s back ached thanks to yesterday’s ride and last night’s … other ride. Multiple rides.
Sarah J. Maas (Tower of Dawn (Throne of Glass, #6))
Watching him, I thought, not for the first time that night, that maybe it should have felt strange to be with him, here, now. And yet it didn’t, at all. That was one of the things about the night. Stuff that would be weird in the bright light of day just wasn’t so much once you passed a certain hour. It was like the dark just evened it all out somehow.
Sarah Dessen (Along for the Ride)
When I was young I wanted to be just like him. One of the charm, of a bright orange smile and muscular laughter. Bold brown eyes flashing fearless when he sat not alone on cold blue nights in empty boxcars. Riding a freight train's solitary wail away from Nebraska Depression, accompanying dreams withered farms. Nothing left but the leaves of possibilities.
Larsen Bowker
Do not enjoy yourself. Enjoy dances and theaters and joy-rides and champagne and oysters; enjoy jazz and cocktails and night-clubs if you can enjoy nothing better; enjoy bigamy and burglary and any crime in the calendar, in preference to the other alternative; but never learn to enjoy yourself.
G.K. Chesterton
Blue jeans, white shirt Walked into the room you know you made my eyes burn It was like, James Dean, for sure You're so fresh to death and sick as ca-cancer You were sorta punk rock, I grew up on hip hop But you fit me better than my favourite sweater, and I know That love is mean, and love hurts But I still remember that day we met in december, oh baby! I will love you 'til the end of time I would wait a million years Promise you'll remember that you're mine Baby can you see through the tears Love you more Than those bitches before Say you'll remember, oh baby, say you'll remember I will love you 'til the end of time Big dreams, gangster Said you had to leave to start your life over I was like, “No please, stay here, We don't need no money we can make it all work,” But he headed out on sunday, said he'd come home monday I stayed up waitin', anticipatin', and pacin' But he was chasing paper "Caught up in the game" ‒ that was the last I heard I will love you 'til the end of time I would wait a million years Promise you'll remember that you're mine Baby can you see through the tears Love you more Than those bitches before Say you'll remember, oh baby, say you'll remember I will love you 'til the end of time You went out every night And baby that's alright I told you that no matter what you did I'd be by your side Cause Imma ride or die Whether you fail or fly Well shit at least you tried. But when you walked out that door, a piece of me died I told you I wanted more-but that's not what I had in mind I just want it like before We were dancing all night Then they took you away-stole you out of my life You just need to remember.... I will love you 'til the end of time I would wait a million years Promise you'll remember that you're mine Baby can you see through the tears Love you more Than those bitches before Say you'll remember, oh baby, say you'll remember I will love you 'til the end of time
Lana Del Rey
If you were only one inch tall, you'd ride a worm to school. The teardrop of a crying ant would be your swimming pool. A crumb of cake would be a feast And last you seven days at least, A flea would be a frightening beast If you were one inch tall. If you were only one inch tall, you'd walk beneath the door, And it would take about a month to get down to the store. A bit of fluff would be your bed, You'd swing upon a spider's thread, And wear a thimble on your head If you were one inch tall. You'd surf across the kitchen sink upon a stick of gum. You couldn't hug your mama, you'd just have to hug her thumb. You'd run from people's feet in fright, To move a pen would take all night, (This poem took fourteen years to write-- 'Cause I'm just one inch tall).
Shel Silverstein (Where the Sidewalk Ends)
June was white. I see the fields white with daisies, and white with dresses; and tennis courts marked with white. Then there was wind and violent thunder. There was a star riding through clouds one night, and I said to the star, “Consume me". That was at midsummer.
Virginia Woolf (The Waves)
I was in the winter of my life- and the men I met along the road were my only summer. At night I fell sleep with vision of myself dancing and laughing and crying with them. Three year down the line of being on an endless world tour and memories of them were the only things that sustained me, and my only real happy times. I was a singer, not very popular one, who once has dreams of becoming a beautiful poet- but upon an unfortunate series of events saw those dreams dashed and divided like million stars in the night sky that I wished on over and over again- sparkling and broken. But I really didn’t mind because I knew that it takes getting everything you ever wanted and then losing it to know what true freedom is. When the people I used to know found out what I had been doing, how I had been living- they asked me why. But there’s no use in talking to people who have a home, they have no idea what its like to seek safety in other people, for home to be wherever you lied you head. I was always an unusual girl, my mother told me that I had a chameleon soul. No moral compass pointing me due north, no fixed personality. Just an inner indecisiviness that was as wide as wavering as the ocean. And if I said that I didn’t plan for it to turn out this way I’d be lying- because I was born to be the other woman. I belonged to no one- who belonged to everyone, who had nothing- who wanted everything with a fire for every experience and an obssesion for freedom that terrified me to the point that I couldn’t even talk about- and pushed me to a nomadic point of madness that both dazzled and dizzied me. Every night I used to pray that I’d find my people- and finally I did- on the open road. We have nothing to lose, nothing to gain, nothing we desired anymore- except to make our lives into a work of art. LIVE FAST. DIE YOUNG. BE WILD. AND HAVE FUN. I believe in the country America used to be. I belive in the person I want to become, I believe in the freedom of the open road. And my motto is the same as ever- *I believe in the kindness of strangers. And when I’m at war with myself- I Ride. I Just Ride.* Who are you? Are you in touch with all your darkest fantasies? Have you created a life for yourself where you’re free to experience them? I Have. I Am Fucking Crazy. But I Am Free.
Lana Del Rey
I kept my eyes open on the ride home. Peeking over Lucas's shoulder, i watched the scenery fly by-and it was exhilarating, not frightening. I trusted him. I had since that first night, when i let him drive me home.
Tammara Webber (Easy (Contours of the Heart, #1))
And still on a winter's night, they say, when the wind is in the trees, When the moon is a ghostly galleon tossed upon cloudy seas, When the road is a gypsy's ribbon looping the purple moor, The highwayman comes riding-- Riding--riding-- The highwayman comes riding, up to the old inn-door. Over the cobbles he clatters and clangs in the dark inn-yard, He taps with his whip on the shutters, but all is locked and barred, He whistles a tune to the window, and who should be waiting there But the landlord's black-eyed daughter-- Bess, the landlord's daughter-- Plaiting a dark red love-knot into her long black hair.
Alfred Noyes (The Highwayman)
That was one of the things about the night. Stuff that would be weird in the bright light of day just wasn’t so much once you passed a certain hour. It was like the dark just evened it all out somehow.
Sarah Dessen (Along for the Ride)
Every night I used to pray that I'd find my people, and finally I did on the open road. We had nothing to lose, nothing to gain, nothing we desired anymore, except to make our lives into a work of art. Live fast. Die young. Be wild. And have fun. I believe in the country America used to be. I believe in the person I want to become. I believe in the freedom of the open road. And my motto is the same as ever: "I believe in the kindness of strangers. And when I'm at war with myself I ride, I just ride." Who are you? Are you in touch with all of your darkest fantasies? Have you created a life for yourself where you can experience them? I have. I am fucking crazy. But I am free.
Lana Del Rey
I am a book. Sheaves pressed from the pulp of oaks and pines a natural sawdust made dingy from purses, dusty from shelves. Steamy and anxious, abused and misused, kissed and cried over, smeared, yellowed, and torn, loved, hated, scorned. I am a book. I am a book that remembers, days when I stood proud in good company When the children came, I leapt into their arms, when the women came, they cradled me against their soft breasts, when the men came, they held me like a lover, and I smelled the sweet smell of cigars and brandy as we sat together in leather chairs, next to pool tables, on porch swings, in rocking chairs, my words hanging in the air like bright gems, dangling, then forgotten, I crumbled, dust to dust. I am a tale of woe and secrets, a book brand-new, sprung from the loins of ancient fathers clothed in tweed, born of mothers in lands of heather and coal soot. A family too close to see the blood on its hands, too dear to suffering, to poison, to cold steel and revenge, deaf to the screams of mortal wounding, amused at decay and torment, a family bred in the dankest swamp of human desires. I am a tale of woe and secrets, I am a mystery. I am intrigue, anxiety, fear, I tangle in the night with madmen, spend my days cloaked in black, hiding from myself, from dark angels, from the evil that lurks within and the evil we cannot lurk without. I am words of adventure, of faraway places where no one knows my tongue, of curious cultures in small, back alleys, mean streets, the crumbling house in each of us. I am primordial fear, the great unknown, I am life everlasting. I touch you and you shiver, I blow in your ear and you follow me, down foggy lanes, into places you've never seen, to see things no one should see, to be someone you could only hope to be. I ride the winds of imagination on a black-and-white horse, to find the truth inside of me, to cure the ills inside of you, to take one passenger at a time over that tall mountain, across that lonely plain to a place you've never been where the world stops for just one minute and everything is right. I am a mystery. -Rides a Black and White Horse
Lise McClendon
Live this with me, just live it, whatever happens, however it happens, live it with me for two days. It doesn’t go the way you like, we’ll talk Monday night. It goes the way you like, we live it real and ride it out. Will you give me that, honey?
Kristen Ashley (Golden Trail (The 'Burg, #3))
r o l l t h e d i c e if you’re going to try, go all the way. otherwise, don’t even start. if you’re going to try, go all the way. this could mean losing girlfriends, wives, relatives, jobs and maybe your mind. go all the way. it could mean not eating for 3 or 4 days. it could mean freezing on a park bench. it could mean jail, it could mean derision, mockery, isolation. isolation is the gift, all the others are a test of your endurance, of how much you really want to do it. and you’ll do it despite rejection and the worst odds and it will be better than anything else you can imagine. if you’re going to try, go all the way. there is no other feeling like that. you will be alone with the gods and the nights will flame with fire. do it, do it, do it. do it. all the way all the way. you will ride life straight to perfect laughter, its the only good fight there is.
Charles Bukowski
The peaceful splendour of the night healed again. The moon was now past the meridian and travelling down the west. It was at its full, and very bright, riding through the empty blue sky.
H.G. Wells
Everyone knows how women soldier on, how women dream up blueprints, recipes, ideas for a better world, and then sometimes lose them on the way to the crib in the middle of the night, on the way to the Stop & Shop, or the bath. They lose them on the way to greasing the path on which their husband and children will ride serenely through life.
Meg Wolitzer (The Wife)
...age-old evil, tireless and vigilant, cloaked from the masses by modern skepticism, yet still a potent force stalking the dark ways of the night.
Dennis Wheatley (The Devil Rides Out (Duke de Richleau, #6) (Black Magic, #1))
We feared that the music which had given us sustenance was in danger of spiritual starvation. We feared it losing its sense of purpose, we feared it falling into fattened hands, we feared it floundering in a mire of spectacle, finance, and vapid technical complexity. We would call forth in our minds the image of Paul Revere, riding through the American night, petitioning the people to wake up, to take up arms. We too would take up arms, the arms of our generation, the electric guitar and the microphone.
Patti Smith (Just Kids)
You don’t trust any man, Ephani. (Danger) And neither should you, little sister. Take a bit of Amazon advice. Ride him into the ground all night long, then slide a blade between his ribs come morning. (Ephani) That's harsh. (Alexion) So is life. (Ephani)
Sherrilyn Kenyon (Sins of the Night (Dark-Hunter, #7))
Give yourself a winter night, long candles, unfamiliar music, a typewriter, keyboard, an instrument, or canvas, to set fire to your mind. Surrender. Be with art. Let the room become a constellation, trust it and ride.
Victoria Erickson (Rhythms and Roads)
The Doors The End This is the end, beautiful friend This is the end, my only friend The end of our elaborate plans The end of ev'rything that stands The end No safety or surprise The end I'll never look into your eyes again Can you picture what will be So limitless and free Desperately in need of some strangers hand In a desperate land Lost in a Roman wilderness of pain And all the children are insane All the children are insane Waiting for the summer rain There's danger on the edge of town Ride the king's highway Weird scenes inside the goldmine Ride the highway West baby Ride the snake Ride the snake To the lake To the lake The ancient lake baby The snake is long Seven miles Ride the snake He's old And his skin is cold The west is the best The west is the best Get here and we'll do the rest The blue bus is calling us The blue bus is calling us Driver, where you taking us? The killer awoke before dawn He put his boots on He took a face from the ancient gallery And he walked on down the hall He went into the room where his sister lived And then he paid a visit to his brother And then he walked on down the hall And he came to a door And he looked inside Father? Yes son I want to kill you Mother, I want to............. Come on, baby, take a chance with us Come on, baby, take a chance with us Come on, baby, take a chance with us And meet me at the back of the blue bus This is the end, beautiful friend This is the end, my only friend The end It hurts to set you free But you'll never follow me The end of laughter and soft lies The end of nights we tried to die This is the end
Jim Morrison (The Doors: The Complete Lyrics)
Mama, I know you used to ride the bus. Riding the bus and it’s hot and bumpy and crowded and too noisy and more than anything in the world you want to get off and the only reason in the world you don’t get off is it’s still fifty blocks from where you’re going? Well, I can get off right now if I want to, because even if I ride fifty more years and get off then, it’s the same place when I step down to it. Whenever I feel like it, I can get off. As soon as I’ve had enough, it’s my stop. I’ve had enough.
Marsha Norman ('night, Mother)
Song Go and catch a falling star, Get with child a mandrake root, Tell me where all past years are, Or who cleft the devil's foot, Teach me to hear mermaids singing, Or to keep off envy's stinging, And find What wind Serves to advance an honest mind. If thou be'st born to strange sights, Things invisible to see, Ride ten thousand days and nights, Till age snow white hairs on thee, Thou, when thou return'st, wilt tell me, All strange wonders that befell thee, And swear, No where Lives a woman true and fair. If thou find'st one, let me know, Such a pilgrimage were sweet; Yet do not, I would not go, Thought at next door we might meet; Though she were true when you met her, And last till you write your letter, Yet she Will be False, ere I come, to two, or three.
John Donne
A Gift for You I send you... A cottage retreat on a hill in Ireland. This cottage is filled with fresh flowers, art supplies, and a double-wide chaise lounge in front of a wood-burning fireplace. There is a cabinet near the front door, where your favorite meals appear, several times a day. Desserts are plentiful and calorie free. The closet is stocked with colorful robes and pajamas, and a painting in the bedroom slides aside to reveal a plasma television screen with every movie you've ever wanted to watch. A wooden mailbox at the end of the lane is filled daily with beguiling invitations to tea parties, horse-and-carriage rides, theatrical performances, and violin concerts. There is no obligation or need to respond. You sleep deeply and peacefully each night, and feel profoundly healthy. This cottage is yours to return to at any time.
S.A.R.K. (Make Your Creative Dreams Real: A Plan for Procrastinators, Perfectionists, Busy People, and People Who Would Really Rather Sleep All Day)
She wanted to stop, but she was riding a wave of memory and it was carrying her backward to that night, that room, and the blood that had spattered her mother's star charts like the map of a new constellation.
Philip Reeve (Mortal Engines (The Hungry City Chronicles, #1))
You kissed me, yes, but it was not just good night. Even then, I could feel the promise in it, the promise that you would kiss me just like that, forever.
Nicholas Sparks (The Longest Ride)
The last night of the year," Constanze said. "Now the days of winter begin and the Goblin King rides abroad, searching for his bride.
S. Jae-Jones (Wintersong (Wintersong, #1))
Try it alone now," he said. "I taught you when you were six. You were a fine little rider then. Do you remember?" "No!" said Azalea. "You remembered how to ride last winter," said the King quietly. He had his arms crossed. "You rode very well, one night last winter, if I remember." The horse beneath Azalea shifted, and she clutched to keep her balance. "That was nearly a year ago," she stammered. "Some things are burned into one's memory." The King helped her down gently onto solid ground, and didn't say another word.
Heather Dixon Wallwork (Entwined)
The seals that hold back night shall weaken, and in the heart of winter shall winter's heart be born amid the wailing of lamentations and the gnashing of teeth, for winter's heart shall ride a black horse, and the name of it is Death. -from The Karaethon Cycle: The Prophecies of the Dragon
Robert Jordan (Winter's Heart (The Wheel of Time, #9))
Rose, I’m sorry I had to leave so quickly, but when the Alchemists tell me to jump … well, I jump. I’ve hitched a ride back to that farm town we stayed in so that I can pick up the Red Hurricane, and then I’m off to Saint Petersburg. Apparently, now that you’ve been delivered to Baia, they don’t need me to stick around anymore. I wish I could tell you more about Abe and what he wants from you. Even if I was allowed to, there isn’t much to say. In some ways, he’s as much a mystery to me as he is to you. Like I said, a lot of the business he deals in is illegal—both among humans and Moroi. The only time he gets directly involved with people is when something relates to that business—or if it’s a very, very special case. I think you’re one of those cases, and even if he doesn’t intend you harm, he might want to use you for his own purposes. It could be as simple as him wanting to contract you as a bodyguard, seeing as you’re rogue. Maybe he wants to use you to get to others. Maybe this is all part of someone else’s plan, someone who’s even more mysterious than him. Maybe he’s doing someone a favor. Zmey can be dangerous or kind, all depending on what he needs to accomplish. I never thought I’d care enough to say this to a dhampir, but be careful. I don’t know what your plans are now, but I have a feeling trouble follows you around. Call me if there’s anything I can help with, but if you go back to the big cities to hunt Strigoi, don’t leave any more bodies unattended! All the best, Sydney P.S. “The Red Hurricane” is what I named the car. P.P.S. Just because I like you, it doesn’t mean I still don’t think you’re an evil creature of the night. You are.
Richelle Mead (Blood Promise (Vampire Academy, #4))
From Jess: FANG. I've commented your blog with my questions for THREE YEARS. You answer other people's STUPID questions but not MINE. YOU REALLY ASKED FOR IT, BUDDY. I'm just gonna comment with this until you answer at least one of my questions. DO YOU HAVE A JAMAICAN ACCENT? No, Mon DO YOU MOLT? Gross. WHAT'S YOUR STAR SIGN? Dont know. "Angel what's my star sign?" She says Scorpio. HAVE YOU TOLD JEB I LOVE HIM YET? No. DOES NOT HAVING A POWER MAKE YOU ANGRY? Well, that's not really true... DO YOU KNOW HOW TO DO THE SOULJA BOY? Can you see me doing the Soulja Boy? DOES IGGY KNOW HOW TO DO THE SOULJA BOY? Gazzy does. DO YOU USE HAIR PRODUCTS? No. Again,no. DO YOU USE PRODUCTS ON YOUR FEATHERS? I don't know that they make bird kid feather products yet. WHAT'S YOU FAVORITE MOVIE? There are a bunch WHAT'S YOUR FAVORITE SONG? I don't have favorites. They're too polarizing. WHAT'S YOUR FAVORITE SMELL? Max, when she showers. DO THESE QUESTIONS MAKE YOU ANGRY? Not really. IF I CAME UP TO YOU IN A STREET AND HUGGED YOU, WOULD YOU KILL ME? You might get kicked. But I'm used to people wanting me dead, so. DO YOU SECRETLY WANT TO BE HUGGED? Doesn't everybody? ARE YOU GOING EMO 'CAUSE ANGEL IS STEALING EVERYONE'S POWERS (INCLUDING YOURS)? Not the emo thing again. WHAT'S YOUR FAVORITE FOOD? Anything hot and delicious and brought to me by Iggy. WHAT DID YOU HAVE FOR BREAKFAST THIS MORNING? Three eggs, over easy. Bacon. More Bacon. Toast. DID YOU EVEN HAVE BREAKFAST THIS MORNING? See above. DID YOU DIE INSIDE WHEN MAX CHOSE ARI OVER YOU? Dudes don't die inside. DO YOU LIKE MAX? Duh. DO YOU LIKE ME? I think you're funny. DOES IGGY LIKE ME? Sure DO YOU WRITE DEPRESSING POETRY? No. IS IT ABOUT MAX? Ahh. No. IS IT ABOUT ARI? Why do you assume I write depressing poetry? IS IT ABOUT JEB? Ahh. ARE YOU GOING TO BLOCK THIS COMMENT? Clearly, no. WHAT ARE YOU WEARING? A Dirty Projectors T-shirt. Jeans. DO YOU WEAR BOXERS OR BRIEFS? No freaking comment. DO YOU FIND THIS COMMENT PERSONAL? Could I not find that comment personal? DO YOU WEAR SUNGLASSES? Yes, cheap ones. DO YOU WEAR YOUR SUNGLASSES AT NIGHT? That would make it hard to see. DO YOU SMOKE APPLES, LIKE US? Huh? DO YOU PREFER BLONDES OR BRUNETTES? Whatever. DO YOU LIKE VAMPIRES OR WEREWOLVES? Fanged creatures rock. ARE YOU GAY AND JUST PRETENDING TO BE STRAIGHT BY KISSING LISSA? Uhh... WERE YOU EXPERIMENING WITH YOUR SEXUALITY? Uhh... WOULD YOU TELL US IF YOU WERE GAY? Yes. DO YOU SECRETLY LIKE IT WHEN PEOPLE CALL YOU EMO? No. ARE YOU EMO? Whatever. DO YOU LIKE EGGS? Yes. I had them for breakfast. DO YOU LIKE EATING THINGS? I love eating. I list it as a hobby. DO YOU SECRETLY THINK YOU'RE THE SEXIEST PERSON IN THE WHOLE WORLD? Do you secretly think I'm the sexiest person in the whole world? DO YOU EVER HAVE DIRTY THOUGHTS ABOUT MAX? Eeek! HAS ENGEL EVER READ YOUR MIND WHEN YOU WERE HAVING DIRTY THOUGHT ABOUT MAX AND GONE "OMG" AND YOU WERE LIKE "D:"? hahahahahahahahahahah DO YOU LIKE SPONGEBOB? He's okay, I guess. DO YOU EVER HAVE DIRTY THOUGHT ABOUT SPONGEBOB? Definitely CAN YOU COOK? Iggy cooks. DO YOU LIKE TO COOK? I like to eat. ARE YOU, LIKE, A HOUSEWIFE? How on earth could I be like a housewife? DO YOU SECRETLY HAVE INNER TURMOIL? Isn't it obvious? DO YOU WANT TO BE UNDA DA SEA? I'm unda da stars. DO YOU THINK IT'S NOT TOO LATE, IT'S NEVER TOO LATE? Sure. WHERE DID YOU LEARN TO PLAY POKER? TV. DO YOU HAVE A GOOD POKER FACE? Totally. OF COURSE YOU HAVE A GOOD POKER FACE. DOES IGGY HAVE A GOOD POKER FACE? Yes. CAN HE EVEN PLAY POKER? Iggy beats me sometimes. DO YOU LIKE POKING PEOPLE HARD? Not really. ARE YOU FANGALICIOUS? I could never be as fangalicious as you'd want me to be. Fly on, Fang
James Patterson (Fang (Maximum Ride, #6))
One fine moonlit night, Mortain and his Wild Hunt were riding through the countryside when they spied two maids more beautiful than any they had ever seen before. They were picking evening primrose, which only blooms in the moonlight. “The two maids turned out to be Amourna and Arduinna, twin daughters of Dea Matrona. When Mortain saw the fair Amourna, he fell instantly in love, for she was not only beautiful but light of heart as well, and surely the god of death needs lightness in his world. “But the two sisters could not be more different. Amourna was happy and giving, but her sister, Arduinna, was fierce, jealous, and suspicious, for such is the dual nature of love. Arduinna had a ferocious and protective nature and did not care for the way Mortain was looking at her beloved sister. To warn him, she drew her bow and let fly with one of her silver arrows. She never misses, and she didn’t miss then. The arrow pierced Mortain’s heart, but no one, not even a goddess, can kill the god of death. “Mortain plucked the arrow from his chest and bowed to Arduinna. ‘Thank you,’ he said. ‘For reminding me that love never comes without cost
R.L. LaFevers (Grave Mercy (His Fair Assassin, #1))
During that long terrible ride to Munich, I finally swallowed the bitter pill of my lover's rejection and poisoned myself with it. I murdered the personality I was born with and transformed myself from a butterfly back in into a caterpillar. That night I learned to seek the shadows, to prefer silence
Edith Hahn Beer
Hey you, dragging the halo- how about a holiday in the islands of grief? Tongue is the word I wish to have with you. Your eyes are so blue they leak. Your legs are longer than a prisoner's last night on death row. I'm filthier than the coal miner's bathtub and nastier than the breath of Charles Bukowski. You're a dirty little windshield. I'm standing behind you on the subway, hard as calculus. My breath be sticking to your neck like graffiti. I'm sitting opposite you in the bar, waiting for you to uncross your boundaries. I want to rip off your logic and make passionate sense to you. I want to ride in the swing of your hips. My fingers will dig in you like quotation marks, blazing your limbs into parts of speech. But with me for a lover, you won't need catastrophes. What attracted me in the first place will ultimately make me resent you. I'll start telling you lies, and my lies will sparkle, become the bad stars you chart your life by. I'll stare at other women so blatantly you'll hear my eyes peeling, because sex with you is like Great Britain: cold, groggy, and a little uptight. Your bed is a big, soft calculator where my problems multiply. Your brain is a garage I park my bullshit in, for free. You're not really my new girlfriend, just another flop sequel of the first one, who was based on the true story of my mother. You're so ugly I forgot how to spell. I'll cheat on you like a ninth grade math test, break your heart just for the sound it makes. You're the 'this' we need to put an end to. The more you apologize, the less I forgive you. So how about it?
Jeffrey McDaniel
Everyone would remember Peter for nineteen minutes of his life, but what about the other nine million? Lacy would be the keeper of those, because it was the only way for that part of Peter to stay alive. For every recollection of him that involved a bullet or a scream, she would have a hundred others: of a little boy splashing in a pond, or riding a bicycle for the first time, or waving from the top of a jungle gym. Of a kiss good night, or a crayoned Mother's Day card, or a voice off-key in the shower. She would string them together - the moments when her child had been just like other people's. She would wear them, precious pearls, every day of her life; because if she lost them, then the boy she had loved and raised and known would really be gone.
Jodi Picoult (Nineteen Minutes)
From up above, in a plane passing over, you’d just see one little light in all this dark, with no idea of the lives that were being lived within it, and in the house beside, and beside that one. So much happening in the world, night and day, hour by hour. It was no wonder we were meant to sleep, if only to check out of it for a little while.
Sarah Dessen (Along for the Ride)
From out of nowhere, Phury felt an overwhelming tide of guilt, like someone had popped the lid off all his deepest concerns and his fears for the future of the race. He had to respond to it, couldn't bear the pressure. Riding the wave, he found himself saying in a rush, "We live and die for our kind. The species is our first and only concern. We fight every night and count the jars of thelessers we kill. Stealth is the way we protect the civilians. The less they know about us, the safer they are. That is why we disappeared.
J.R. Ward (Lover Awakened (Black Dagger Brotherhood, #3))
HALLOWE'EN Pixie, kobold, elf, and sprite All are on their rounds to-night,- In the wan moon's silver ray Thrives their helter-skelter play. Fond of cellar, barn,or stack, True unto the almanac, They present to credulous eyes Strange hobgoblin mysteries. Cabbage-stomps-straws wet with dew- Apple-skins, and chestnuts too, And a mirror for some lass, Show what wonders come to pass. Doors they move, and gates they hide, Mischiefs that on moon-beams ride Are their deeds, and, by their spells, Love records its oracles. Don't we all, of long ago, By the ruddy fireplace glow, In the kitchen and the hall, Those queer, coofllke pranks recall? Eery shadows were they then- But to-night they come again; Were we once more but sixteen, Precious would be Halloween.
Joel Benton
What shall I give? and which are my miracles? 2. Realism is mine--my miracles--Take freely, Take without end--I offer them to you wherever your feet can carry you or your eyes reach. 3. Why! who makes much of a miracle? As to me, I know of nothing else but miracles, Whether I walk the streets of Manhattan, Or dart my sight over the roofs of houses toward the sky, Or wade with naked feet along the beach, just in the edge of the water, Or stand under trees in the woods, Or talk by day with any one I love--or sleep in the bed at night with any one I love, Or sit at the table at dinner with my mother, Or look at strangers opposite me riding in the car, Or watch honey-bees busy around the hive, of a summer forenoon, Or animals feeding in the fields, Or birds--or the wonderfulness of insects in the air, Or the wonderfulness of the sundown--or of stars shining so quiet and bright, Or the exquisite, delicate, thin curve of the new moon in spring; Or whether I go among those I like best, and that like me best--mechanics, boatmen, farmers, Or among the savans--or to the _soiree_--or to the opera. Or stand a long while looking at the movements of machinery, Or behold children at their sports, Or the admirable sight of the perfect old man, or the perfect old woman, Or the sick in hospitals, or the dead carried to burial, Or my own eyes and figure in the glass; These, with the rest, one and all, are to me miracles, The whole referring--yet each distinct and in its place. 4. To me, every hour of the light and dark is a miracle, Every inch of space is a miracle, Every square yard of the surface of the earth is spread with the same, Every cubic foot of the interior swarms with the same; Every spear of grass--the frames, limbs, organs, of men and women, and all that concerns them, All these to me are unspeakably perfect miracles. To me the sea is a continual miracle; The fishes that swim--the rocks--the motion of the waves--the ships, with men in them, What stranger miracles are there?
Walt Whitman (Leaves of Grass)
A Poem By Maximum Ride How does one describe freedom, How can one call themselves free, How does one sleep at night knowing all the troubles that lay ahead, If one had a choice to be free or have freedom what does one pick, How does one even begin to describe the choices of being free, Freedom is choice, Freedom is happiness, Freedom is doing what you want, Freedom is to fly.
James Patterson (The Angel Experiment (Maximum Ride, #1))
First of all, it was October, a rare month for boys. Not that all months aren’t rare. But there be bad and good, as the pirates say. Take September, a bad month: school begins. Consider August, a good month: school hasn’t begun yet. July, well, July’s really fine: there’s no chance in the world for school. June, no doubting it, June’s best of all, for the school doors spring wide and September’s a billion years away. But you take October, now. School’s been on a month and you’re riding easier in the reins, jogging along. You got time to think of the garbage you’ll dump on old man Prickett’s porch, or the hairy-ape costume you’ll wear to the YMCA the last night of the month. And if it’s around October twentieth and everything smoky-smelling and the sky orange and ash gray at twilight, it seems Halloween will never come in a fall of broomsticks and a soft flap of bedsheets around corners.
Ray Bradbury (Something Wicked This Way Comes (Green Town, #2))
Despair. I’d been told I suffered from it too. The thing was, I never sensed myself in despair, but rather, in love with something I felt closest to only when walking or riding my bike in the city. I felt it when I kept my windows open all night, or sitting on the rickety wood of the porch my landlord called a fire escape, peeled paint flaking under my hands and feet, looking over the empty lot. It had to do with a texture, with the moon and a stray white cat I’d been feeding, a cat that saw me as home now.
Monica Drake (The Folly of Loving Life)
Do you want to know the closest thing to feeling the most powerful you can feel ? Flying alone at night.Risky.Nothing but you and the wind soaring way above everything , Slicing through the air like a Sword. Up and up until you feel like you can grab a star and hold it to your chest like a burning, Spiky thing
James Patterson (Max (Maximum Ride, #5))
The secret is this: people gamble to lose money. They come to the casinos for the moment in which they feel alive, to ride the spinning wheel and turn with the cards and lose themselves, with the coins, in the slots. They want to know they matter. They may brag about the nights they won, the money they took from the casino, but they treasure, secretly treasure, the times they lost. It’s a sacrifice, of sorts.
Neil Gaiman (American Gods (American Gods, #1))
To persons standing alone on a hill during a clear midnight such as this, the roll of the world eastward is almost a palpable movement. The sensation may be caused by the panoramic glide of the stars past earthly objects, which is perceptible in a few minutes of stillness, or by the better outlook upon space that a hill affords, or by the wind, or by the solitude; but whatever be its origin the impression of riding along is vivid and abiding. The poetry of motion is a phrase much in use, and to enjoy the epic form of that gratification it is necessary to stand on a hill at a small hour of the night, and, having first expanded with a sense of difference from the mass of civilized mankind, who are dreamwrapt and disregardful of all such proceedings at this time, long and quietly watch your stately progress through the stars. After such a nocturnal reconnoitre it is hard to get back to earth, and to believe that the consciousness of such majestic speeding is derived from a tiny human frame.
Thomas Hardy (Far From the Madding Crowd)
I couldn't help but suspect something he'd seen or encountered had changed his view of what had happened between them. It had somehow set him free. And he'd let it fly, that gorgeous blackbird of a love he'd been keeping in a cage. What was it like for him, every day standing outside in the wind and rain to stare at the ocean, yearning for some sign of her, never giving up hope? At The Peak perhaps she'd finally come into view, a ship coming neither toward him nor away, only riding that perfect line between heaven and earth, long enough for him to know that she had loved him, that what they had was real, before slipping out of sight, probably forever.
Marisha Pessl (Night Film)
Ride with an outlaw, die with him," he added. "I admit it's a harsh code. But you rode on the other side long enough to know how it works. I'm sorry you crossed the line, though." Jake's momentary optimism had passed, and he felt tired and despairing. He would have liked a good bed in a whorehouse and a nice night's sleep. "I never seen no line, Gus," he said. "I was just trying to get to Kansas without getting scalped.
Larry McMurtry (Lonesome Dove (Lonesome Dove #1))
Those big green eyes were even bigger than usual as she stared at the two of them. For a moment, she looked like a kid who’d found the last cupcake on the planet.
Sophie Oak (Three to Ride (Nights in Bliss, Colorado, #1))
Of the two classes of Prussian officer, the bull-necked and the wasp-waisted, he belonged to the second. Monocled and effete in appearance, cold and distant in manner, he concentrated with such single-mindedness on his profession that when an aide, at the end of an all-night staff ride in East Prussia, pointed out to him the beauty of the river Pregel sparkling in the rising sun, the General gave a brief, hard look and replied, 'An unimportant obstacle.
Barbara W. Tuchman (The Guns of August)
You're so fucking beautiful when you come," he said, cupping her face, nuzzling her mouth. "Now turn around and bend over. I need to ride you." Tate opened her eyes and let out a shaky laugh. "Bend over the table? After being on my feet the whole night? I don't think so, buddy. I want on my back, pronto." "And I want in you. Now," he said as he lifted her left leg, hooked his elbow under her knee, and entered her.
Elle Aycart (More than Meets the Ink (Bowen Boys, #1))
if he hadn’t been following her, she doubted she’d be thinking about him at all. Yet he was still able to ruin her night, and that bothered her. Because she was allowing it to happen. Because she was giving him that power over her.
Nicholas Sparks (The Longest Ride)
Annabelle, what happened to you?” Lillian asked the next morning. “You look dreadful. Why aren’t you wearing your riding habit? I thought you were going to try out the jumping course this morning. And why did you disappear so suddenly last night? It’s not like you to simply vanish without saying—” “I didn’t have a choice in the matter,” Annabelle said testily, folding her fingers around the delicate bowl of a porcelain teacup. Looking pale and exhausted, her blue eyes ringed with dark shadows, she swallowed a mouthful of heavily sweetened tea before continuing. “It was that blasted perfume of yours—as soon as he caught one whiff of it, he went berserk.” Shocked, Lillian tried to take in the information, her stomach plummeting. “It… it had an effect on Westcliff, then?” she managed to ask. “Good Lord, not Lord Westcliff.” Annabelle rubbed her weary eyes. “He couldn’t have cared less what I smelled like. It was my husband who went completely mad. After he caught the scent of that stuff, he dragged me up to our room and…well, suffice it to say, Mr. Hunt kept me awake all night. All night ,” she repeated in sullen emphasis, and drank deeply of the tea. “Doing what?” Daisy asked blankly. Lillian, who was feeling a rush of relief that Lord Westcliff had not been attracted to Annabelle while she was wearing the perfume, gave her younger sister a derisive glance. “What do you think they were doing? Playing a few hands of Find-the-Lady?
Lisa Kleypas (It Happened One Autumn (Wallflowers, #2))
Song Go and catch a falling star, Get with child a mandrake root, Tell me where all past years are, Or who cleft the devil's foot, Teach me to hear mermaids singing, Or to keep off envy's stinging, And find What wind Serves to advance an honest mind. If thou be'st born to strange sights, Things invisible to see, Ride ten thousand days and nights, Till age snow white hairs on thee, Thou, when thou return'st, wilt tell me, All strange wonders that befell thee, And swear, No where Lives a woman true, and fair. If thou find'st one, let me know, Such a pilgrimage were sweet; Yet do not, I would not go, Though at next door we might meet; Though she were true, when you met her, And last, till you write your letter, Yet she Will be False, ere I come, to two, or three. —John Donne, 1572–1631
Neil Gaiman (Stardust)
There's an energy to these autumn nights that touches something primal inside of me. Something from long ago. From my childhood in Western Iowa. I think of high school football games and the stadium lights blazing down on the players. I smell ripening apples, and the sour reek of beer from keg parties in the cornfields. I feel the wind in my face as I ride in the bed of an old pickup truck down a country road at night, dust swirling red in the taillights and the entire span of my life yawning out ahead of me. It's the beautiful thing about youth. There's a weightlessness that permeates everything because no damning choices have been made, no paths committed to, and the road forking out ahead is pure, unlimited potential.
Blake Crouch (Dark Matter)
You know the rest. In the books you have read How the British Regulars fired and fled,--- How the farmers gave them ball for ball, From behind each fence and farmyard wall, Chasing the redcoats down the lane, Then crossing the fields to emerge again Under the trees at the turn of the road, And only pausing to fire and load. So through the night rode Paul Revere; And so through the night went his cry of alarm To every Middlesex village and farm,--- A cry of defiance, and not of fear, A voice in the darkness, a knock at the door, And a word that shall echo for evermore! For, borne on the night-wind of the Past, Through all our history, to the last, In the hour of darkness and peril and need, The people will waken and listen to hear The hurrying hoof-beats of that steed, And the midnight message of Paul Revere.
Henry Wadsworth Longfellow (The Midnight Ride of Paul Revere)
The name of the author is the first to go followed obediently by the title, the plot, the heartbreaking conclusion, the entire novel which suddenly becomes one you have never read, never even heard of, as if, one by one, the memories you used to harbor decided to retire to the southern hemisphere of the brain, to a little fishing village where there are no phones. Long ago you kissed the names of the nine Muses goodbye and watched the quadratic equation pack its bag, and even now as you memorize the order of the planets, something else is slipping away, a state flower perhaps, the address of an uncle, the capital of Paraguay. Whatever it is you are struggling to remember, it is not poised on the tip of your tongue, not even lurking in some obscure corner of your spleen. It has floated away down a dark mythological river whose name begins with an L as far as you can recall, well on your own way to oblivion where you will join those who have even forgotten how to swim and how to ride a bicycle. No wonder you rise in the middle of the night to look up the date of a famous battle in a book on war. No wonder the moon in the window seems to have drifted out of a love poem that you used to know by heart.
Billy Collins
He rolled his eyes and took my hand. His hand was hard and calloused, tough with muscle and old scars. The night settled around us like a blanket. I could hear the water lapping against the dock. We were totally alone. “You’re . . . ,” he began, and I waited, heart throbbing in my throat. “Such a pain,” he concluded. “What?” I asked, just as his head swooped in and his mouth touched mine. I tried to speak, but one of Fang’s hands held the back of my head, and he kept his lips pressed against me, kissing me softly but with a Fanglike determination. Oh, jeez, I thought distractedly. Jeez, this is Fang, and me, and . . . Fang tilted his head to kiss me more deeply, and I felt totally lightheaded. Then I remembered to breathe through my nose, and the fog cleared a tiny bit. Somehow we were pressed together, Fang’s arms around me now, sliding under my wings, his hands flat against my back. It was incredible. I loved it. I loved him. It was a total disaster. Gasping, I pulled back. “I, uh—,” I began oh so coherently, and then I jumped up, almost knocking him over, and raced down the dock. I took off, flying fast, like a rocket.
James Patterson (The Final Warning (Maximum Ride, #4))
But I want to extol not the sweetness nor the placidity of the dog, but the wilderness out of which he cannot step entirely, and from which we benefit. For wilderness is our first home too, and in our wild ride into modernity with all its concerns and problems we need also all the good attachments to that origin that we can keep or restore. Dog is one of the messengers of that rich and still magical first world. The dog would remind us of the pleasures of the body with its graceful physicality, and the acuity and rapture of the senses, and the beauty of forest and ocean and rain and our own breath. There is not a dog that romps and runs but we learn from him. The other dog—the one that all its life walks leashed and obedient down the sidewalk—is what a chair is to a tree. It is a possession only, the ornament of a human life. Such dogs can remind us of nothing large or noble or mysterious or lost. They cannot make us sweeter or more kind. Only unleashed dogs can do that. They are a kind of poetry themselves when they are devoted not only to us but to the wet night, to the moon and the rabbit-smell in the grass and their own bodies leaping forward.
Mary Oliver (Dog Songs)
Delilah Bard did not like horses. She’d never liked them, not when she only knew them for their snapping teeth, and their flicking tails, and their stomping hooves, and not when she found herself on the back of one, the night racing past so fast it blurred around her, and not now as she watched a pair of silver-scarred guards saddle up three for their ride to the port. As far as she was concerned, nothing with so little brain should have so much force. Then again, she could say the same about half the tournament magicians.
V.E. Schwab (A Conjuring of Light (Shades of Magic, #3))
You don’t go to Niagara Falls or the pyramids every day, but you remember them forever. That’s what I offer. An unforgettable night, and a taxi ride home.
J.D. Hawkins (Insatiable, Part One (Insatiable #1))
Memory is like riding a trail at night with a lighted torch. The torch casts its light only so far, and beyond that is darkness. —Ancient Lakota saying
Bob Drury (The Heart of Everything That Is: The Untold Story of Red Cloud, An American Legend)
A thousand dark nights spent riding with no home to arrive at.
Cassandra Clare
You can’t read good-night stories to your bank account, or brush its hair, or teach it how to ride a bike for the first time.
Marko Kloos (Angles of Attack (Frontlines, #3))
Dad, will they ever come back?" "No. And yes." Dad tucked away his harmonica. "No not them. But yes, other people like them. Not in a carnival. God knows what shape they'll come in next. But sunrise, noon, or at the latest, sunset tomorrow they'll show. They're on the road." "Oh, no," said Will. "Oh, yes, said Dad. "We got to watch out the rest of our lives. The fight's just begun." They moved around the carousel slowly. "What will they look like? How will we know them?" "Why," said Dad, quietly, "maybe they're already here." Both boys looked around swiftly. But there was only the meadow, the machine, and themselves. Will looked at Jim, at his father, and then down at his own body and hands. He glanced up at Dad. Dad nodded, once, gravely, and then nodded at the carousel, and stepped up on it, and touched a brass pole. Will stepped up beside him. Jim stepped up beside Will. Jim stroked a horse's mane. Will patted a horse's shoulders. The great machine softly tilted in the tides of night. Just three times around, ahead, thought Will. Hey. Just four times around, ahead, thought Jim. Boy. Just ten times around, back, thought Charles Halloway. Lord. Each read the thoughts in the other's eyes. How easy, thought Will. Just this once, thought Jim. But then, thought Charles Halloway, once you start, you'd always come back. One more ride and one more ride. And, after awhile, you'd offer rides to friends, and more friends until finally... The thought hit them all in the same quiet moment. ...finally you wind up owner of the carousel, keeper of the freaks... proprietor for some small part of eternity of the traveling dark carnival shows.... Maybe, said their eyes, they're already here.
Ray Bradbury (Something Wicked This Way Comes (Green Town, #2))
Oh, Oliver, I said to myself on my way to the kitchen for a quick bite to eat, I’ll do anything for you. I’ll ride up the hill with you, and I’ll race you up the road to town, and won’t point out the sea when we reach the berm, and I’ll wait at the bar in the piazzetta while you meet with your translator, and I’ll touch the memorial to the unknown soldier who died on the Piave, and I won’t utter a word, I’ll show you the way to the bookstore, and we’ll park our bikes outside the shop and go in together and leave together, and I promise, I promise, I promise, there’ll be no hint of Shelley, or Monet, nor will I ever stoop to tell you that two nights ago you added an annual ring to my soul.
André Aciman (Call Me by Your Name)
Hello, beautiful. Just wrap those long, sexy legs around me and I’ll ride you anywhere, any time you want.” Talfryn “This one’s all yours. Go ahead, brother, wrap your long, sexy legs right around his waist and ride him all night long.” Cadegan
Sherrilyn Kenyon (Son of No One (Dark-Hunter, #23; Hellchaser, #5; Were-Hunter, #8, Lords of Avalon, #3))
At night, the house thick with sleep, she would peer out her bedroom window at the trees and sky and feel the presence of a mystery. Some possibility that included her--separate from her present life and without its limitations. A secret. Riding in the car with her father, she would look out at other cars full of people she'd never seen, any one of whom she might someday meet and love, and would feel the world holding her making its secret plans.
Jennifer Egan (Look at Me)
We rode the basement trains all night, speeding through the subterrains. I held her chin in the cup of my hand and her eyes held tight to mine, imploring me to reveal to her the mystery of that which awaits us on the pavement above, come the day we ascend from this labyrinth of trains... 'We will ride these beautiful basement trains forever,' said I, 'nothing awaits us; and as your beauty folds, so do my dreams. Come, my love, let us wander these tunnels of the endless city. This holy, endless city!
Roman Payne (The Basement Trains (a 21st century poem))
Man, that was one trippy ride. Especially when those big white rabbits started running alongside the car through Crow Canyon. Dave and Mickey looked at me like I was nuts until they figured out I was so fucked-up tired, I'd hallucinated the white mailboxes we'd passed along the road into galloping rabbits.
Larry J. Dunlap (Night People (Things We Lost in the Night, #1))
This book is dedicated to the Ancient Ones, to the Lord of Abominations, Humwawa, whose face is a mass of entrails, whose breath is the stench of dung and the perfume of death, Dark Angel of all that is excreted and sours, Lord of Decay, Lord of the Future, who rides on a whispering south wind, to Pazuzu, Lord of Fevers and Plagues, Dark Angel of the Four Winds with rotting genitals from which he howls through sharpened teeth over stricken cities, to Kutulu, the Sleeping Serpent who cannot be summoned, to the Akhkharu, who such the blood of men since they desire to become men, to the Lalussu, who haunt the places of men, to Gelal and Lilit, who invade the beds of men and whose children are born in secret places, to Addu, raiser of storms who can fill the night sky with brightness, to Malah, Lord of Courage and Bravery, to Zahgurim, whose number is twenty-three and who kills in an unnatural fashion, to Zahrim, a warrior among warriors, to Itzamna, Spirit of Early Mists and Showers, to Ix Chel, the Spider-Web-that-Catches-the-Dew-of-Morning, to Zuhuy Kak, Virgin Fire, to Ah Dziz, the Master of Cold, to Kak U Pacat, who works in fire, to Ix Tab, Goddess of Ropes and Snares, patroness of those who hang themselves, to Schmuun, the Silent One, twin brother of Ix Tab, to Xolotl the Unformed, Lord of Rebirth, to Aguchi, Master of Ejaculations, to Osiris and Amen in phallic form, to Hex Chun Chan, the Dangerous One, to Ah Pook, the Destroyer, to the Great Old One and the Star Beast, to Pan, God of Panic, to the nameless gods of dispersal and emptiness, to Hassan i Sabbah, Master of Assassins. To all the scribes and artists and practitioners of magic through whom these spirits have been manifested…. NOTHING IS TRUE. EVERYTHING IS PERMITTED.
William S. Burroughs (Cities of the Red Night)
Choose the men you take to your bed by these criteria: they see the finest in you, enhance and defend it. When you fuck a man you are giving him A. Motherfucking. Gift. Be certain he deserves it. And bloody hell, don't have one-night stands. Commit to the action. Make it matter. Feel it and ride it all the way through.
Karen Marie Moning (High Voltage (Fever, #10))
V grabbed him by the lapels and yanked him up against his body. The brother was trembling from head to foot, his eyes glowing like crystals in the night. "You are not my enemy." Instantly pissed off, Butch gripped V's shoulders, bunching up the leather jacket in his fists. "How do we know for sure." V bared his fangs and hissed, his black eyebrows cranking down hard. Butch gave the aggression right back, hoping, praying, ready for them to start clocking each other. He was jonesing to hit and get hit back; he wanted blood all over the both of them. For long moments, they stayed locked together, muscles straining, sweat blooming, right on the edge. Then Vishous's voice came out into space between their faces, the cracked tone riding a panting, desperate breath and getting bucked off. "You are my only friend. Never my enemy." No telling who embraced who first, but the urge to beat the living shit out of the other guy bled from their bodies, leaving only the bond between them. They wound up tight together and stood for a time in the cold wind. When they stepped back, it was awkwardly and with embarrassment.
J.R. Ward (Lover Revealed (Black Dagger Brotherhood, #4))
Go and catch a falling star, Get with child a mandrake root, Tell me where all past years are, Or who cleft the devil's foot, Teach me to hear mermaids singing, Or to keep off envy's stinging, And find What wind Serves to advance an honest mind. If thou be'st born to strange sights, Things invisible to see, Ride ten thousand days and nights, Till age snow white hairs on thee, Thou, when thou return'st, wilt tell me, All strange wonders that befell thee, And swear, No where Lives a woman true and fair.
John Donne
PLANETARIUM Thinking of Caroline Herschel (1750–1848) astronomer, sister of William; and others. A woman in the shape of a monster a monster in the shape of a woman the skies are full of them a woman ‘in the snow among the Clocks and instruments or measuring the ground with poles’ in her 98 years to discover 8 comets she whom the moon ruled like us levitating into the night sky riding the polished lenses Galaxies of women, there doing penance for impetuousness ribs chilled in those spaces of the mind An eye, ‘virile, precise and absolutely certain’ from the mad webs of Uranusborg encountering the NOVA every impulse of light exploding from the core as life flies out of us Tycho whispering at last ‘Let me not seem to have lived in vain’ What we see, we see and seeing is changing the light that shrivels a mountain and leaves a man alive Heartbeat of the pulsar heart sweating through my body The radio impulse pouring in from Taurus I am bombarded yet I stand I have been standing all my life in the direct path of a battery of signals the most accurately transmitted most untranslatable language in the universe I am a galactic cloud so deep so invo- luted that a light wave could take 15 years to travel through me And has taken I am an instrument in the shape of a woman trying to translate pulsations into images for the relief of the body and the reconstruction of the mind.
Adrienne Rich (Collected Early Poems, 1950-1970)
It haunted him all night, while he slept alone; it was still there in the morning, when he swallowed his coffee and backed down the driveway in the crumpled old Ford. And riding to work, one of the youngest and healthiest passengers on the train, he sat with the look of a man condemned to a very slow, painless death. He felt middle-aged.
Richard Yates (Revolutionary Road)
For instance, if you woke up in the middle of the night and saw a masked woman trying to crawl through your bedroom window, you might call your mother or father to help you push her back out. If you found yourself hopelessly lost in the middle of a strange city, you might ask the police to give you a ride home. And if you were an author locked in an Italian restaurant that was slowly filling up with water, you might call upon your acquaintances in the locksmith, pasta, and sponge business to come and rescue you.
Lemony Snicket (The Hostile Hospital (A Series of Unfortunate Events, #8))
ALTERNATE UNIVERSE IN WHICH I AM UNFAZED BY THE MEN WHO DO NOT LOVE ME when the businessman shoulder checks me in the airport, i do not apologize. instead, i write him an elegy on the back of a receipt and tuck it in his hand as i pass through the first class cabin. like a bee, he will die after stinging me. i am twenty-four and have never cried. once, a boy told me he doesn’t “believe in labels” so i embroidered the word chauvinist on the back of his favorite coat. a boy said he liked my hair the other way so i shaved my head instead of my pussy. while the boy isn’t calling back, i learn carpentry, build a desk, write a book at the desk. i taught myself to cum from counting ceiling tiles. the boy says he prefers blondes and i steam clean his clothes with bleach. the boy says i am not marriage material and i put gravel in his pepper grinder. the boy says period sex is disgusting and i slaughter a goat in his living room. the boy does not ask if he can choke me, so i pretend to die while he’s doing it. my mother says this is not the meaning of unfazed. when the boy says i curse too much to be pretty and i tattoo “cunt” on my inner lip, my mother calls this “being very fazed.” but left over from the other universe are hours and hours of waiting for him to kiss me and here, they are just hours. here, they are a bike ride across long island in june. here, they are a novel read in one sitting. here, they are arguments about god or a full night’s sleep. here, i hand an hour to the woman crying outside of the bar. i leave one on my best friend’s front porch, send my mother two in the mail. i do not slice his tires. i do not burn the photos. i do not write the letter. i do not beg. i do not ask for forgiveness. i do not hold my breath while he finishes. the man tells me he does not love me, and he does not love me. the man tells me who he is, and i listen. i have so much beautiful time.
Olivia Gatwood (New American Best Friend)
Max felt his eye twitching. He knew he should be yelling, but his limbs wouldn’t move. This was what it felt like to be paralyzed with rage. Yes, he was going to do it. He was going to finally go utterly psychotic and prove the whole town right. He was going to walk over to those arrogant assholes and take the first one apart. Then he’d beat the other one to death with his dead brother’s leg. He looked to his own brother. Rye would save him from his towering rage. Rye would have calming words. Rye would talk him down. Rye’s face was red as he pointed at the young cowboys. “You, kill now, Max.
Sophie Oak (Three to Ride (Nights in Bliss, Colorado, #1))
Few things can be pleasanter than riding a reliable broomstick through a moony autumn night. It is best of all when home is at the end of the journey.
Barbara Willard
To Selene (Moon) Hear, Goddess queen, diffusing silver light, bull-horn'd and wand'ring thro' the gloom of Night. With stars surrounded, and with circuit wide Night's torch extending, thro' the heav'ns you ride: Female and Male with borrow'd rays you shine, and now full-orb'd, now tending to decline. Mother of ages, fruit-producing Moon [Mene], whose amber orb makes Night's reflected noon: Lover of horses, splendid, queen of Night, all-seeing pow'r bedeck'd with starry light. Lover of vigilance, the foe of strife, in peace rejoicing, and a prudent life: Fair lamp of Night, its ornament and friend, who giv'st to Nature's works their destin'd end. Queen of the stars, all-wife Diana hail! Deck'd with a graceful robe and shining veil; Come, blessed Goddess, prudent, starry, bright, come moony-lamp with chaste and splendid light, Shine on these sacred rites with prosp'rous rays, and pleas'd accept thy suppliant's mystic praise.
Orpheus
Desmond ushered the man inside. He was stooped and ugly, with an unkempt beard and unwashed clothes, yet Father greeted him pleasantly and asked his name. “Yoren, as it please m’lord. My pardons for the hour.” He bowed to Arya. “And this must be your son. He has your look.” “I’m a girl,” Arya said, exasperated. If the old man was down from the Wall, he must have come by way of Winterfell. “Do you know my brothers?” she asked excitedly. “Robb and Bran are at Winterfell, and Jon’s on the Wall. Jon Snow, he’s in the Night’s Watch too, you must know him, he has a direwolf, a white one with red eyes. Is Jon a ranger yet? I’m Arya Stark.” The old man in his smelly black clothes was looking at her oddly, but Arya could not seem to stop talking. “When you ride back to the Wall, would you bring Jon a letter if I wrote one?” She wished Jon were here right now. He’d believe her about the dungeons and the fat man with the forked beard and the wizard in the steel cap.
George R.R. Martin (A Game of Thrones (A Song of Ice and Fire, #1))
THE HOST is riding from Knocknarea And over the grave of Clooth-na-bare; Caolte tossing his burning hair And Niamh calling Away, come away: Empty your heart of its mortal dream. The winds awaken, the leaves whirl round, Our cheeks are pale, our hair is unbound, Our breasts are heaving, our eyes are a-gleam, Our arms are waving, our lips are apart; And if any gaze on our rushing band, We come between him and the deed of his hand, We come between him and the hope of his heart. The host is rushing ’twixt night and day, And where is there hope or deed as fair? Caolte tossing his burning hair, And Niamh calling Away, come away
W.B. Yeats
You’re going to go on dreaming and imagining and making up stories about me as you walk along the street, and pretending that we’re riding in a forest, or landing on an island —' 'No. I shall think of you ordering dinner, paying bills, doing the accounts, showing old ladies the relics —
Virginia Woolf (Night and Day)
The thousands stand and chant. Around them in the world, people ride escalators going up and sneak secret glances at the faces coming down. People dangle teabags over hot water in white cups. Cars run silently on the autobahns, streaks of painted light. People sit at desks and stare at office walls. They smell their shirts and drop them in the hamper. People bind themselves into numbered seats and fly across time zones and high cirrus and deep night, knowing there is something they've forgotten to do.
Don DeLillo (Mao II)
If an unfamiliar dog follows you at night, don't stop to look at it. If you wake up to find a cat you don't recognize sitting in your yard, watching your house, don't open the door. And most of all, if you see a beautiful horse near a lake or the edge of the forest, never, ever try to ride it.
Margaret Rogerson (An Enchantment of Ravens)
These were the moments when I was most tested, when comfort was an option. Not when I was sleeping in the hallway, not when I had to exit my friends’ apartments forcibly at odd hours, and not even when I had to ride the subway all night long and sleep there. Instead, lying around in my friends’ apartments when I had the option to sleep was the most difficult of all these situations for me. This was because, without being forced outdoors, I somehow had to find a reason to choose school, a reason from inside myself.
Liz Murray (Breaking Night)
Dad used to say lots of funny things - like he was speaking his own language sometimes. Twenty-three skidoo, salad days, nosey parker, bandbox fresh, the catbird seat, chocolate teapot, and something about Grandma sucking eggs. One of his favourites was 'safe as houses'. Teaching me to ride a bike, my mother worrying in the doorway: "Calm down, Linda, this street is as safe as houses." Convincing Jamie to sleep without his nightlight: "It's as safe as houses in here, son, not a monster for miles." Then overnight the world turned into a hideous nightmare, and the phrase became a black joke to Jamie and me. Houses were the most dangerous places we knew. Hiding in a patch of scrubby pines, watching a car pull out from the garage of a secluded home, deciding whether to make a food run, whether it was too dicey. "Do you think the parasites'll be long gone?" "No way - that place is as safe as houses. Let's get out of here." And now I can sit here and watch TV like it is five years ago and Mom and Dad are in the other room and i've never spent a night hiding in a drainpipe with Jamie and a bunch of rats while bodysnatchers with spotlights search for the thieves who made off with a bag of dried beans and a bowl of cold spaghetti. I know that if Jamie and I survived alone for twenty years we would never find this feeling on our own. The feeling of safety. More than safety, even - happiness. Safe and happy, two things I thought i'd never feel again. Jared made us feel that way without trying, just be being Jared. I breathe in the scent of his skin and feel the warmth of his body under mine. Jared makes everything safe, everything happy. Even houses.
Stephenie Meyer (The Host)
If a person leads an ‘active’ life, as Wiggs had, if a person has goals, ideals, a cause to fight for, then that person is distracted, temporarily, from paying a whole lot of attention to the heavy scimitar that hangs by a mouse hair just about his or her head. We, each of us, have a ticket to ride, and if the trip be interesting (if it’s dull, we have only ourselves to blame), then we relish the landscape (how quickly it whizzes by!), interact with our fellow travelers, pay frequent visits to the washrooms and concession stands, and hardly ever hold up the ticket to the light where we can read its plainly stated destination: The Abyss. Yet, ignore it though we might in our daily toss and tussle, the fact of our impending death is always there, just behind the draperies, or, more accurately, inside our sock, like a burr that we can never quite extract. If one has a religious life, one can rationalize one’s slide into the abyss; if one has a sense of humor (and a sense of humor, properly developed, is superior to any religion so far devised), one can minimalize it through irony and wit. Ah, but the specter is there, night and day, day in and day out, coloring with its chalk of gray almost everything we do. And a lot of what we do is done, subconsciously, indirectly, to avoid the thought of death, or to make ourselves so unexpendable through our accomplishments that death will hesitate to take us, or, when the scimitar finally falls, to insure that we ‘live on’ in the memory of the lucky ones still kicking.
Tom Robbins (Jitterbug Perfume)
Do you ride?” That sounded sort of dirty, and the way he looked at me felt sort of dirty, too. No one ever looked at me like that. “Why ‘Ghost’?” I asked. Grasping the top of the car door, he leaned over it and spoke in a dramatic, foreboding voice. “Because she’s so fast she disappears down the streets at night.” “That sounds dangerous.” His dimple appeared. “The best things in life are.
Jenn Bennett (The Anatomical Shape of a Heart)
Our police force was not created to serve black Americans; it was created to police black Americans and serve white Americans. This is why even when police were donning white hoods and riding out at night to burn crosses on the lawns of black families, white families could still look at them with respect and trust.
Ijeoma Oluo (So You Want to Talk About Race)
Royce saw to his horse’s needs; then, finding a suitable place, he unrolled his blanket and lay down. “I take it we’re camping here, then?” Royce said nothing, still refusing to acknowledge his existence. “You could have said, ‘We’re going to bed down here for the rest of the night.’ No, wait, you’re right, too much. How about ‘sleeping here’? Two words. Even you could manage that, right? I mean, I know you can talk. You had plenty to say back in Arcadius’s office. Couldn’t keep the words from coming out then, but no, utterly impossible to indicate in any way that we’ll be stopping here for the night.” Hadrian dismounted and began unloading Dancer. “How long were we on the road?” He paused to look up at the moon. “What? Five, six hours? Not a damn word. Getting chilly out, don’t you think, Hadrian? Moon looks like a fingernail, ain’t that right, Hadrian? That tree looks like a goddamn bear, don’t it, Hadrian? Nothing. By the way, in case you hadn’t noticed, I was attacked by a goshawk and a pig-riding dwarf that shot eggs at me with a sling. I was knocked from my horse and wrestled with the dwarf, the hawk, and the pig for what had to be half an hour. The dwarf kept smashing eggs in my face, and that ruddy pig pinned me down, licking them off. I only got away because the dwarf ran out of eggs. Then the hawk turned into a moth that became distracted by the light of the moon.” Royce shifted to his side, hood up. “Yeah, well … thank Maribor and Novron I didn’t need your help that time.” “Didn’t care for my help too much in the stable,” Royce said. “It speaks!
Michael J. Sullivan (The Crown Tower (The Riyria Chronicles, #1))
When weary day does shed its light, I rest my head and dream, I ride the great dark bird of night, so tranquil and serene. Then I can touch the moon afar, which smiles up in the sky, and steal a twinkle from each star, as we go winging by.   We’ll fly the night to dawning light, and wait ’til dark has ceased, to marvel at the wondrous sight, of sunrise in the east. So slumber on, my little one, float soft as thistledown, and wake to see when night is done, fair morning’s golden gown.
Brian Jacques (Loamhedge (Redwall, #16))
We’ve already altered our relationship with last night,” Nick said. “We’ll never get that back.” “I know,” Kelly said softly. “We can stop here and just go to sleep. ”Kelly narrowed his eyes, a smile flitting across his lips. “You’re going to look for the exit at every turn, aren’t you?” Nick huffed. Kelly began to unbutton his shirt. “Well there ain’t no exits on this ride, babe, ’cause I know all your tricks.
Abigail Roux (Shock & Awe (Sidewinder, #1))
Tonight I write this journal entry on my laptop. Other nights I have handwritten entries in notebooks. Sometimes I jot down notes as I ride home in the cab or wait for an appointment. I want all of this -- everything and everyone -- to stay with me.
Paula Huntley (The Hemingway Book Club of Kosovo)
Now days are dragon-ridden, the nightmare Rides upon sleep: a drunken soldiery Can leave the mother, murdered at her door, To crawl in her own blood, and go scott-free; The night can sweat with terror as before We pieced our thoughts into philosophy, And planned to bring the world under rule, Who are but weasels fighting in a hole.
W.B. Yeats
He dreamt that night that he rode through the woods on a low ridge. Below him he could see deer in a meadow where the sun fell on the grass. The grass was still wet and the deer stood in it to their elbows. He could feel the spine of the mule rolling under him and he gripped the mule's barrel with his legs. Each leaf that brushed his face deepened his sadness and dread. Each leaf he passed, he'd never pass again. They rode over his face like veils, already some yellow, their veins slender like bones where the sun shone through them. He had resolved himself to ride on for he could not turn back and the world that day was as lovely as any day ever was and he was riding to his death.
Cormac McCarthy (Child of God)
I think we're the only ones in the building," he says. "Then no one will mind when I do this!" I jump onto the desk and parade back and forth. St. Clair belts out a song, and I shimmy to the sound of his voice. When he finishes,I bow with a grand flourish. "Quick!" he says. "What?" I hop off the desk. Is Nate here? Did he see? But St. Clair runs to the stairwell. He throws open the door and screams. The ehco makes us both jump, and then together we scream again at the top of our lungs. It's exhilarating. St. Clair chases me to the elevator,and we ride it to the rooftop. He hangs back but laughs as I spit off the side, trying to hit a lingerie advertisement. The wind is fierce,and my aim is off,so I race back down two flights of stairs. Our staircase is wide and steady, so he's only a few feet behind me. We reach his floor. "Well," he says. Our conversation halts for the first time in hours. I look past him. "Um.Good night." "See you tomorrow? Late breakfast at the creperie?" "That'd be nice." "Unless-" he cuts himself off. Unless what? He's hesitant, changed his mind. The moment passes. I give him one more questioning look, but he turns away. "Okay." It's hard to keep the disappointment out of my voice. "See you in the morning." I take the steps down and glance back.He's staring at me. I lift my hand and wave. He's oddly statuesque. I push through the door to my floor,shaking my head. I don't understand why things always go from perfect to weird with us. It's like we're incapable of normal human interaction. Forget about it,Anna. The stairwell door bursts open. My heart stops. St. Clair looks nervous. "It's been a good day. This was the first good day I've had in ages." He walks slowly toward me. "I don't want it to end. I don't want to be alone right now." "Uh." I can't breathe. He stops before me,scanning my face. "Would it be okay if I stayed with you? I don't want to make you uncomfortable-" "No! I mean..." My head swims. I can hardly think straight. "Yes. Yes, of course,it's okay." St. Clair is still for a moment. And then he nods. I pull off my necklace and insert my key into the lock. He waits behind me. My hand shakes as I open the door.
Stephanie Perkins (Anna and the French Kiss (Anna and the French Kiss, #1))
Christmas Day has come and gone, the New Year lies ahead. Strange things happen Between the Years, in the days outside of time. Minutes go wild, hours vanish. Idleness becomes a clever thief, stealing the names of the days of the week, muting the steady tick of watches and clocks. These are the hours when angels, ghosts, demons and meddlers ride howling wind and flickering candlelight, keen to stir unguarded hearts and restless minds.
Ami McKay (Half Spent Was the Night: A Witches' Yuletide)
Under-slept employees are not, therefore, going to drive your business forward with productive innovation. Like a group of people riding stationary exercise bikes, everyone looks like they are pedaling, but the scenery never changes. The irony that employees miss is that when you are not getting enough sleep, you work less productively and thus need to work longer to accomplish a goal. This means you often must work longer and later into the evening, arrive home later, go to bed later, and need to wake up earlier, creating a negative feedback loop. Why try to boil a pot of water on medium heat when you could do so in half the time on high? People often tell me that they do not have enough time to sleep because they have so much work to do. Without wanting to be combative in any way whatsoever, I respond by informing them that perhaps the reason they still have so much to do at the end of the day is precisely because they do not get enough sleep at night.
Matthew Walker (Why We Sleep: The New Science of Sleep and Dreams)
I don't appreciate how often people hide their scars and doubts. Really, it's not fair to people who are struggling, to go on believing that everyone else just has it totally together and never has one bad thought in their lives. Like, I know you people sometimes lie awake at night torturing yourself over the atrocities in this world and morality and meaning. I know you're not just dreaming about riding a pink pony to your job as a cupcake taster.
Emery Lord (When We Collided)
Thank you for inviting me here today " I said my voice sounding nothing like me. "I'm here to testify about things I've seen and experienced myself. I'm here because the human race has become more powerful than ever. We've gone to the moon. Our crops resist diseases and pests. We can stop and restart a human heart. And we've harvested vast amounts of energy for everything from night-lights to enormous super-jets. We've even created new kinds of people, like me. "But everything mankind" - I frowned - "personkind has accomplished has had a price. One that we're all gonna have to pay." I heard coughing and shifting in the audience. I looked down at my notes and all the little black words blurred together on the page. I just could not get through this. I put the speech down picked up the microphone and came out from behind the podium. "Look " I said. "There's a lot of official stuff I could quote and put up on the screen with PowerPoint. But what you need to know what the world needs to know is that we're really destroying the earth in a bigger and more catastrophic was than anyone has ever imagined. "I mean I've seen a lot of the world the only world we have. There are so many awesome beautiful tings in it. Waterfalls and mountains thermal pools surrounded by sand like white sugar. Field and field of wildflowers. Places where the ocean crashes up against a mountainside like it's done for hundreds of thousands of years. "I've also seen concrete cities with hardly any green. And rivers whose pretty rainbow surfaces came from an oil leak upstream. Animals are becoming extinct right now in my lifetime. Just recently I went through one of the worst hurricanes ever recorded. It was a whole lot worse because of huge worldwide climatic changes caused by... us. We the people." .... "A more perfect union While huge corporations do whatever they want to whoever they want and other people live in subway tunnels Where's the justice of that Kids right here in America go to be hungry every night while other people get four-hundred-dollar haircuts. Promote the general welfare Where's the General welfare in strip-mining toxic pesticides industrial solvents being dumped into rivers killing everything Domestic Tranquility Ever sleep in a forest that's being clear-cut You'd be hearing chain saws in your head for weeks. The blessings of liberty Yes. I'm using one of the blessings of liberty right now my freedom of speech to tell you guys who make the laws that the very ground you stand on the house you live in the children you tuck in at night are all in immediate catastrophic danger.
James Patterson (The Final Warning (Maximum Ride, #4))
Okay.' I can feel the letters vomit off my tongue. O. K. A. Y. I watch the vet insert the syringe into the catheter and inject the second drug. And then the adventures come flooding back: The puppy farm. The gentle untying of the shoelace. THIS! IS! MY! HOME! NOW! Our first night together. Running on the beach. Sadie and Sophie and Sophie Dee. Shared ice-cream cones. Thanksgivings. Tofurky. Car rides. Laughter. Eye rain. Chicken and rice. Paralysis. Surgery. Christmases. Walks. Dog parks. Squirrel chasing. Naps. Snuggling. 'Fishful Thinking.' The adventure at sea. Gentle kisses. Manic kisses. More eye rain. So much eye rain. Red ball. The veterinarian holds a stethoscope up to Lily's chest, listening for her heartbeat. All dogs go to heaven. 'Your mother's name is Witchie-Poo.' I stroke Lily behind her ears the way that used to calm her. 'Look for her.' OH FUCK IT HURTS. I barely whisper. 'She will take care of you.
Steven Rowley (Lily and the Octopus)
I do not believe that this is an evil king. But he is confused. And he cannot say no to his wife. Therefore if it please God I shall raise an army of men who are not confused. Stern men who say no to the tyranny of kings and wives. Men who make no confusion over the ordained place of man and woman, king and subject. And with these stern, God-fearing men, I shall ride. And we shall be called Ironsides because we are like iron, being hard both day and night. And the king shall find us unyielding, like a rod of iron, and shall give us satisfaction. Like our wives!
Oliver Cromwell (Speeches of Oliver Cromwell)
When I was little, my brother drew an image for me on the train ride home from the academy. It was a map of Internment, only instead of the real city, he'd drawn a castle for the clock tower. And the buildings were all different somehow. Mysterious. And right at the edge he drew a ladder that went down and disappeared into the clouds. It was the most spectacular thing I'd ever seen, and getting ready for my bath that night, I discovered it had fallen from a hole on my skirt pocket. I wanted to go out and look for it, but my mother told me the sweepers had already come. The paper would be collected with all the other forgotten-about things and it would be compressed and recycled into something new. I looked for it the next day, anyway, to no avail. I couldn't believe such a wonderful thing could be destroyed so simply. I learned that it could. Anything could be destroyed.
Lauren DeStefano (Perfect Ruin (The Internment Chronicles, #1))
It would not be like this. It would be a systematic campaign moving southward towards Ios, building on the support he had from the kyroi factions. He would not be stealing out of camp at night to spin mad plans, to dress in unfamiliar clothes and forge alliances with rogue clans, or to fight alongside pony-riding warriors, capturing bandits improbably in the mountains. It would not be like this again.
C.S. Pacat (Captive Prince: Volume Two (Captive Prince, #2))
I feel the wind in my face as I ride in the bed of an old pickup truck down a country road at night, dust swirling red in the taillights and the entire span of my life yawning out ahead of me. It’s the beautiful thing about youth. There’s a weightlessness that permeates everything because no damning choices have been made, no paths committed to, and the road forking out ahead is pure, unlimited potential.
Blake Crouch (Dark Matter)
That's the real excellent scary part, that feeling, and that feeling won't come if the lady from next door is there and your mom won't ride the ride, because what brings on that feeling most is when your mom rides wedged in tight with you and your brother on nights like this, when your mom will scream the excellent scream, the scream that people you see in snatches on the boardwalk stop and stare for, the scream that stops the ride next door, the scream that tells us to our hearts the bolts have finally broken.
Mark Richard (The Ice at the Bottom of the World: Stories)
Money itself isn’t evil, but the love of it is the root of all kinds of evil. So these things helped me to stay grounded. I began realizing that people on yachts weren’t happier than people in rowboats. Bentleys break down just like Nissans. You can get a great night’s sleep at a Hampton Inn just like at a Ritz-Carlton. And flying in first class won’t get you to your destination any faster than riding in coach.
Lecrae Moore (Unashamed)
These ears aren't to be trusted. The keening in the night, didn't you hear? Once I believed all the stories didn’t have endings, but I realized the endings were invented, like zero, had yet to be imagined. The months come around again, and we are in the same place; full moons, cherries in bloom, the same deer, the same frogs, the same helpless scratching at the dirt. You leave poems I can’t read behind on the sheets, I try to teach you songs made of twigs and frost. you may be imprisoned in an underwater palace; I'll come riding to the rescue in disguise. Leave the magic tricks to me and to the teakettle. I've inhaled the spells of willow trees, spat them out as blankets of white crane feathers. Sleep easy, from behind the closet door I'll invent our fortunes, spin them from my own skin. (from, The Fox-Wife's Invitation)
Jeannine Hall Gailey
If you are like most people, you have an assortment of friends and family you can call upon in times of trouble. For instance, if you woke up in the middle of the night and saw a masked woman trying to crawl through your bedroom window, you might call your mother or father to help you push her back out. If you found yourself hopelessly lost in the middle of a strange city, you might ask the police to give you a ride home. And if you were an author locked in an Italian restaurant that was slowly filling up with water, you might call upon your acquaintances in the locksmith, pasta, and sponge business to come and rescue you.
Lemony Snicket (The Hostile Hospital (A Series of Unfortunate Events, #8))
you're Shane, right?' He inched away from her and managed a quick nod as he twisted the rag he held in his fingers. 'Heidi sad you were willing to teach me how to ride.' Her expression shifted from entertained to confused, as if she was wondering why no one had mentioned he was a can or two shy of a six-pack. 'A horse,' he clarified, then wanted to kick himself. What else but a horse? Did he think she was here to learn to ride his mother's elephant? One corner of Annabelle's perfect, full mouth twitched. 'A horse would be good. You seem to have several.' He wanted to remind himself that he was usually fine around women. Smooth even. He was intelligent, funny and could, on occasion, be charming. Just not now, with his blood pumping and his brain doing nothing more than shouting "it's her, it's her" over and over again. Chemistry, he thought grimly. It could turn the smartest man into a drooling idiot. Here he was, proving the theory true.
Susan Mallery (Summer Nights (Fool's Gold, #8))
You aren't like your mom." "I am.But I don't want to be like that anymore,I want what I want." He turns to me again,his face anxious. "I told my father's friends that I'm studying at Berkeley next year.It worked.He's really,really angry with me,but it worked.You told me to go for his pride.You were right." "So." I'm cautious,hardly daring to believe. "You're moving to California?" "I have to." "Right." I swallow hard. "Because of your mom." "Because of you. I'll only be a twenty-minute train ride from your school,and I'll make the commute to see you every night.I'd take a commute ten times that just to be with you every night." His words are too perfect.It must be a misunderstanding,surely I'm misunderstanding- "You're the most incredible girl I've ever known.You're gorgeous and smart, and you make my laugh like no one else can.And I can talk to you. And I know after all this I don't deserve you,but what I'm trying to say is that I love you,Anna.Very much." I'm holding my breath.I can't talk,but my eyes are filling with tears. He takes it the wrong way. "Oh God.And I've mucked things up again,haven't I? I didn't mean to attack you like this.I mean I did but...all right." His voice cracks. "I'll leave.Or you can go down first,and then I'll come down,and I promise I'll never bother you again-" He starts to stand,but I grab his arm. "No!" His body freezes. "I'm so sorry," he says. "I never mean to hurt you." I trail my fingers across his cheek. He stays perfectly still for me. "Please stop apologizing,Etienne." "Say my name again," he whispers. I close my eyes and lean forward. "Etienne." He takes my hands into his.Those pefect hands,that fit mine just so. "Anna?" Our foreheads touch. "Yes?" "Will you please tell me you love me? I'm dying here." And then we're laughing.And them I'm in his arms,and we're kissing,at first quickly-to make up for lost time-and then slowly,because we have all the time in the world.And his lips are soft and honey sweet,and the careful, passionate way he moves them against my own says that he savors the way I taste,too. And in between kisses,I tell him I love him. Again and again and again.
Stephanie Perkins (Anna and the French Kiss (Anna and the French Kiss, #1))
Here in the north each night is a whole winter long. Yet the place is fair enough, doubt it not! Thou shalt see sights here such as thou hast not seen in the halls of the English king. We shall be together as sisters whilst thou bidest with me; we shall go down to the sea when the storm begins once more; thou shalt see the billows rushing upon the land like wild, white-maned horses—and then the whales far out in the offing! They dash one against another like steel-clad knights! Ha, what joy to be a witching-wife and ride on the whale's back—to speed before the skiff, and wake the storm, and lure men to the deeps with lovely songs of sorcery!
Henrik Ibsen (The Vikings of Helgeland)
Children see God every day; they just don't call it that. It's the summer sky painted with cumulus clouds by day and sequined with a million stars by night. It's the sweet whispers of sweet gum trees and the sounds riding the tops of honeysuckle-scented breezes. Children feel God stuffed into brown fluffy dogs with stitches strong enough to withstand a good squeeze, and on the lips of round women who can't get enough sugar from Chocolate. I began to believe that God is us and nature, beauty and love, mystery and majesty, everything right and good.
Charles M. Blow (Fire Shut Up in My Bones)
If I only had the privileges of a man, I would order out Sir Percival's best horse instantly, and tear away on a night-gallop, eastward, to meet the rising sun—a long, hard, heavy, ceaseless gallop of hours and hours, like the famous highwayman's ride to York. Being, however, nothing but a woman, condemned to patience, propriety, and petticoats for life, I must respect the house-keeper's opinions, and try to compose myself in some feeble and feminine way.
Wilkie Collins (The Woman in White)
One day on a ranging we brought down a fine big elk. We were skinning it when the smell of blood drew a shadowcat out of its lair. I drove it off, but not before it shredded my cloak to ribbons. Do you see? Here, here, and here?” He chuckled. “It shredded my arm and back as well, and I bled worse than the elk. My brothers feared I might die before they got me back to Maester Mullin at the Shadow Tower, so they carried me to a wildling village where we knew an old wisewoman did some healing. She was dead, as it happened, but her daughter saw to me. Cleaned my wounds, sewed me up, and fed me porridge and potions until I was strong enough to ride again. And she sewed up the rents in my cloak as well, with some scarlet silk from Asshai that her grandmother had pulled from the wreck of a cog washed up on the Frozen Shore. It was the greatest treasure she had, and her gift to me.” He swept the cloak back over his shoulders. “But at the Shadow Tower, I was given a new wool cloak from stores, black and black, and trimmed with black, to go with my black breeches and black boots, my black doublet and black mail. The new cloak had no frays nor rips nor tears … and most of all, no red. The men of the Night’s Watch dressed in black, Ser Denys Mallister reminded me sternly, as if I had forgotten. My old cloak was fit for burning now, he said. “I left the next morning … for a place where a kiss was not a crime, and a man could wear any cloak he chose.
George R.R. Martin (A Storm of Swords (A Song of Ice and Fire, #3))
Death should hold no fear for a man as old as me, but it does. Isn't that silly? It is always dark where I am so why should I fear the darkness? Yet I cannot help but wonder what will follow, when the last warmth leaves my body. Will I feast forever in the Father's golden hall as the septons say? Will I talk with Egg again, find Dareon whole and happy, hear my sisters singing to their children? What if the horselords have the truth of it? Will I ride through the night sky forever on a stallion made of flame? Or must I return again to this vale of sorrow? Who can say truly? Who has been beyond the wall of death to see?
George R.R. Martin (A Feast for Crows (A Song of Ice and Fire, #4))
From that night the thousand streets ran as one street, with imperceptible corners and changes of scene, broken by intervals of begged and stolen rides, on trains and trucks, and on country wagons with he at twenty and twentyfive and thirty sitting on the seat with his still, hard face and the clothes (even when soiled and worn) of a city man and the driver of the wagon not knowing who or what the passenger was and not daring to ask. The street ran into Oklahoma and Missouri and as far south again as Mexico and then back north to Chicago and Detroit and then back south again and at last to Mississippi. It was fifteen years long.
William Faulkner (Light in August)
Regret nothing. Not the cruel novels you read to the end just to find out who killed the cook. Not the insipid movies that made you cry in the dark, in spite of your intelligence, your sophistication. Not the lover you left quivering in a hotel parking lot, the one you beat to the punchline, the door, or the one who left you in your red dress and shoes, the ones that crimped your toes, don’t regret those. Not the nights you called god names and cursed your mother, sunk like a dog in the livingroom couch,b chewing your nails and crushed by loneliness. You were meant to inhale those smoky nights over a bottle of flat beer, to sweep stuck onion rings across the dirty restaurant floor, to wear the frayed coat with its loose buttons, its pockets full of struck matches. You’ve walked those streets a thousand times and still you end up here. Regret none of it, not one of the wasted days you wanted to know nothing, when the lights from the carnival rides were the only stars you believed in, loving them for their uselessness, not wanting to be saved. You’ve traveled this far on the back of every mistake, ridden in dark-eyed and morose but calm as a house after the TV set has been pitched out the upstairs window. Harmless as a broken ax. Emptied of expectation. Relax. Don’t bother remembering any of it. Let’s stop here, under the lit sign on the corner, and watch all the people walk by.
Dorianne Laux (The Book of Men)
I used to believe in so many things—elves and leprechauns, virgins riding unicorns. I trusted that the world was made up of people who were generally good, though they may have lost their way temporarily. The faith my mother gave me—the words she whispered when she said good night, the idea that gave me hope for the two of us even when we fought bitterly over trivial things, as mothers and daughters do, I guess—was her belief in love, a love so unconditional we could barely scratch at the edges of comprehending it.
Elissa Janine Hoole (Kiss the Morning Star)
We made it, baby. We’re riding in the back of the black limousine. They have lined the road to shout our names. They have faith in your golden hair & pressed grey suit. They have a good citizen in me. I love my country. I pretend nothing is wrong. I pretend not to see the man & his blond daughter diving for cover, that you’re not saying my name & it’s not coming out like a slaughterhouse. I’m not Jackie O yet & there isn’t a hole in your head, a brief rainbow through a mist of rust. I love my country but who am I kidding? I’m holding your still-hot thoughts in, darling, my sweet, sweet Jack. I’m reaching across the trunk for a shard of your memory, the one where we kiss & the nation glitters. Your slumped back. Your hand letting go. You’re all over the seat now, deepening my fuchsia dress. But I’m a good citizen, surrounded by Jesus & ambulances. I love this country. The twisted faces. My country. The blue sky. Black limousine. My one white glove glistening pink—with all our American dreams.
Ocean Vuong (Night Sky with Exit Wounds)
The tale is told by royalty and vagabonds alike, nobles and peasants, hunters and farmers, the old and the young. The tale comes from ever corner of the world, but no matter where it is told, it is always the same story, A boy on horseback, wandering at night, in the woods or on the plains or along the shores. The sound of a lute drifts in the evening air. Over head are the stars of a clear sky, a sheet of light so bright that he reaches up, trying to touch them. He stops and descends from his horse. Then he waits. He waits until exactly midnight, when the newest constellation in the sky blinks into existence. If you are very quiet and do not look away, you may see the brightest star in the constellation glow steadily brighter. It brightens until it overwhelms every other star in the sky, brightens until it seems to touch the ground, and then the glow is gone, and it its place is a girl. Her hair and lashes are painted a shifting silver, and a scar crosses one side of her face. She is dressed in Sealand silks and a necklace of sapphire. Some say that, once upon a time, she had a prince, a father, a society of friends. Other say that she was once a wicked queen, a worker of illusions, a girl who brought darkness across the lands. Still others say that she once had a sister, and that she loved her dearly. Perhaps all of these are true. She walks to the boy, tilts her head up at him, and smiles. He bends down to kiss her. Then he helps her onto the horse, and she rides away with him to a faraway place, until they can no longer be seen. These are only rumors, of course, and make little more than a story to tell around the fire. But it is told. And thus they live on. --"The Midnight Star", a folktale
Marie Lu (The Midnight Star (The Young Elites, #3))
Really, in a lot of ways being a cyclist is like being a vampire. First of all, both cyclists and vampires are cultural outcasts with cult followings who clumsily walk the line between cool and dorky. Secondly, both cyclists and vampires resemble normal humans, but they also lead secret double lives, have supernatural powers, and aren’t governed by the same rules as the rest of humanity—though cycling doesn’t come with the drawbacks of vampirism. Cyclists can ride day or night, we can consume all the garlic we want, and very few of us are afflicted with bloodlust or driven by a relentless urge to kill.
BikeSnobNYC (Bike Snob: Systematically Mercilessly Realigning the World of Cycling)
She’d worried, after Asterin and Vesta had left them aboard the ship they’d sailed here, that she might have made a mistake in choosing to travel with three immortal males. That she’d be trampled underfoot. But Gavriel had been kind from the start, making sure Elide ate enough and had blankets on frigid nights, teaching her to ride the horses they’d spent precious coin to purchase because Elide wouldn’t stand a chance of keeping up with them on foot, ankle or no. And for the times when they had to lead their horses over rough terrain, Gavriel had even braced her leg with his magic, his power a warm summer breeze against her skin.
Sarah J. Maas (Kingdom of Ash (Throne of Glass, #7))
Can I make you happier with powder on my chest? Do you need a thousand movie shows? Sixteen million people to ride the bus with, hit the stop—I shoulda never let you go away from home—“ Rich lips brooded in my deaf ear. “The fog’ll fall all over you, Jacky, you’ll wait in fields—You’ll let me die—you wont come save me—I wont even know where your grave is—remember what you were like, where your house, what your life—you’ll die without knowing what happened to my face—my love—my youth—You’ll burn yourself out like a moth jumping in a locomotive boiler looking for light—Jacky—and you’ll be dead—and lose yourself from yourself—and forget—and sink—and me too—and what is all this then?” “I dont know—“ “Then come back to our porch of the river the night time the trees and you love stars—I hear the bus on the corner—where you’re getting off—no more, boy, no more—I saw, had visions and idees of you handsome my husband walking across the top of the America with your lantern... Out of her eyes I saw smoldering I’d like to rip this damn dress off and never see it again!
Jack Kerouac (Maggie Cassidy)
Some nights he sat up late on his front porch with a glass of Jack and listened to the trucks heading south on 220, carrying crates of live chickens to the slaughterhouses—always under cover of darkness, like a vast and shameful trafficking—chickens pumped full of hormones that left them too big to walk—and he thought how these same chickens might return from their destination as pieces of meat to the floodlit Bojangles’ up the hill from his house, and that meat would be drowned in the bubbling fryers by employees whose hatred of the job would leak into the cooked food, and that food would be served up and eaten by customers who would grow obese and end up in the hospital in Greensboro with diabetes or heart failure, a burden to the public, and later Dean would see them riding around the Mayodan Wal-Mart in electric carts because they were too heavy to walk the aisles of a Supercenter, just like hormone-fed chickens.
George Packer (The Unwinding: An Inner History of the New America)
But later, just as we're turning the corner into my road, and I'm beginning to panic about the pain and difficulty of the impending conversation, I see a woman on her own, Saturday-night-smart, off to meet somebody somewhere, friends, or a lover. And when I was living with Laura, I missed... what? Maybe I missed somebody traveling on a bus or tube or cab, *going out of her way*, to meet me, maybe dressed up a little, wearing more makeup than usual, maybe even slightly nervous; when I was younger, the knowledge that I was responsible for any of this, even the bus ride, made me feel pathetically grateful. When you're with someone permanently, you don't get that: if Laura wanted to see me, she only had to turn her head, or walk from the bathroom to the bedroom, and she never bothered to dress up for the trip. And when she came home, she came home because she lived in my flat, not because we were lovers, and when we went out, she sometimes dressed up and sometimes didn't, depending on where we were going, but again, it was nothing whatsoever to do with me. Anyway, all this is by way of saying that the woman I saw out of the cab window inspired me and consoled me, momentarily: maybe I am not too old to provoke a trip from one part of London to another, and if I ever do have another date, and I arrange to meet that date in, say, Islington, and she has to come all the way from Stoke Newington, a journey of some three to four miles, I will thank her from the bottom of my wretched thirty-five-year-old heart.
Nick Hornby (High Fidelity)
Horse What does the horse give you That I cannot give you? I watch you when you are alone, When you ride into the field behind the dairy, Your hands buried in the mare's Dark mane. Then I know what lies behind your silence: Scorn, hatred of me, of marriage. Still, You want me to touch you; you cry out As brides cry, but when I look at you I see There are no children in your body. Then what is there? Nothing, I think. Only haste To die before I die. In a dream, I watched you ride the horse Over the dry fields and then Dismount: you two walked together; In the dark, you had no shadows. But I felt them coming toward me Since at night they go anywhere, They are their own masters. Look at me. You think I don't understand? What is the animal If not passage out of this life?
Louise Glück (Triumph of Achilles)
Fanfare for the Makers A cloud of witnesses. To whom? To what? To the small fire that never leaves the sky. To the great fire that boils the daily pot. To all the things we are not remembered by, Which we remember and bless. To all the things That will not notice when we die, Yet lend the passing moment words and wings. So fanfare for the Makers: who compose A book of words or deeds who runs may write As many who do run, as a family grows At times like sunflowers turning towards the light. As sometimes in the blackout and the raids One joke composed an island in the night. As sometimes one man’s kindness pervades A room or house or village, as sometimes Merely to tighten screws or sharpen blades Can catch a meaning, as to hear the chimes At midnight means to share them, as one man In old age plants an avenue of limes And before they bloom can smell them, before they span The road can walk beneath the perfected arch, The merest greenprint when the lives began Of those who walk there with him, as in default Of coffee men grind acorns, as in despite Of all assaults conscripts counter assault, As mothers sit up late night after night Moulding a life, as miners day by day Descend blind shafts, as a boy may flaunt his kite In an empty nonchalant sky, as anglers play Their fish, as workers work and can take pride In spending sweat before they draw their pay. As horsemen fashion horses while they ride, As climbers climb a peak because it is there, As life can be confirmed even in suicide: To make is such. Let us make. And set the weather fair. Louis Macneice
Louis MacNeice (Collected Poems of Louis MacNeice)
if you are going to try, go all the way.. Otherwise, don’t even start.. If you are going to try, go all the way.. This could mean losing girlfriends, wives, relatives and maybe even your mind. Go all the way.. It could mean not eating for three or four days.. It could mean freezing on a park bench.. It could mean jail, derision, mockery, isolation.. Isolation is the gift. All the others are a test for endurance, of how much you really want to do it.. And you’ll do it, despite rejection and the worst odds. And it will be better than anything else you can imagine.. if you are going to try, go all the way.. there’s no other feeling like that. You will be alone with the gods and the nights will flame with fire. Do it, do it , do it.. all the way .. all the way.. You will ride life straight to perfect laughter. It’s the only good fight there is ….
Charles Bukowski
Biju stepped out of the airport into the Calcutta night, warm, mammalian. His feet sank into dust winnowed to softness at his feet, ad he felt an unbearable feeling, sad and tender, old and sweet like the memory of falling asleep, a baby on his mother's lap. Thousands of people were out though it was almost eleven. He saw a pair of elegant bearded goats in a rickshaw, riding to slaughter. A conference of old men with elegant goat faces, smoking bidis. A mosque and minarets lit magic green in the night with a group of women rushing by in burkas, bangles clinking under the black and a big psychedelic mess of colour from a sweet shop. Rotis flew through the air as in a juggling act, polka-dotting the sky high over a restaurant that bore the slogan "Good food makes good mood". Biju stood there in that dusty tepid soft sari night. Sweet drabness of home - he felt everything shifting and clicking into place around him, felt himself slowly shrink back to size, the enormous anxiety of being a foreigner ebbing - that unbearable arrogance and shame of the immigrant. Nobody paid attention to him here, and if they said anything at all, their words were easy, unconcerned. He looked about and for the first time in God knows how long, his vision unblurred and he found that he could see clearly.
Kiran Desai (The Inheritance of Loss)
Six express tracks and twelve locals pass through Palimpsest. The six Greater Lines are: Stylus, Sgraffito, Decretal, Foolscap, Bookhand, and Missal. Collectively, in the prayers of those gathered prostrate in the brass turnstiles of its hidden, voluptuous shrines, these are referred to as the Marginalia Line. They do not run on time: rather, the commuters of Palimpsest have learned their habits, the times of day and night when they prefer to eat and drink, their mating seasons, their gathering places. In days of old, great safaris were held to catch the great trains in their inexorable passage from place to place, and women grappled with them with hooks and tridents in order to arrive punctually at a desk in the depth, of the city. As if to impress a distracted parent on their birthday, the folk of Palimpsest built great edifices where the trains liked to congregate to drink oil from the earth and exchange gossip. They laid black track along the carriages’ migratory patterns. Trains are creatures of routine, though they are also peevish and curmudgeonly. Thus the transit system of Palimpsest was raised up around the huffing behemoths that traversed its heart, and the trains have not yet expressed displeasure. To ride them is still an exercise in hunterly passion and exactitude, for they are unpredictable, and must be observed for many weeks before patterns can be discerned. The sport of commuting is attempted by only the bravest and the wildest of Palimpsest. Many have achieved such a level of aptitude that they are able to catch a train more mornings than they do not. The wise arrive early with a neat coil of hooked rope at their waist, so that if a train is in a very great hurry, they may catch it still, and ride behind on the pauper’s terrace with the rest of those who were not favored, or fast enough, or precise in their calculations. Woe betide them in the infrequent mating seasons! No train may be asked to make its regular stops when she is in heat! A man was once caught on board when an express caught the scent of a local. The poor banker was released to a platform only eight months later, when the two white leviathans had relinquished each other with regret and tears.
Catherynne M. Valente (Palimpsest)
William Wordsworth was said to have walked 180,000 miles in his lifetime. Charles Dickens captured the ecstasy of near-madness and insomnia in the essay “Night Walks” and once said, “The sum of the whole is this: Walk and be happy; Walk and be healthy.” Robert Louis Stevenson wrote of “the great fellowship of the Open Road” and the “brief but priceless meetings which only trampers know.” Friedrich Wilhelm Nietzsche said, “Only those thoughts that come by walking have any value.” More recently, writers who knew the benefits of striking out excoriated the apathetic public, over and over again, for its laziness. “Of course, people still walk,” wrote a journalist in Saturday Night magazine in 1912. “That is, they shuffle along on their own pins from the door to the street car or taxi-cab…. But real walking … is as extinct as the dodo.” “They say they haven’t time to walk—and wait fifteen minutes for a bus to carry them an eighth of a mile,” wrote Edmund Lester Pearson in 1925. “They pretend that they are rushed, very busy, very energetic; the fact is, they are lazy. A few quaint persons—boys chiefly—ride bicycles.
Ben Montgomery (Grandma Gatewood's Walk: The Inspiring Story of the Woman Who Saved the Appalachian Trail)
A few years ago, Ed and I were exploring the dunes on Cumberland Island, one of the barrier islands between the Atlantic Ocean and the mainland of south Georgia. He was looking for the fossilized teeth of long-dead sharks. I was looking for sand spurs so that I did not step on one. This meant that neither of us was looking very far past our own feet, so the huge loggerhead turtle took us both by surprise. She was still alive but just barely, her shell hot to the touch from the noonday sun. We both knew what had happened. She had come ashore during the night to lay her eggs, and when she had finished, she had looked around for the brightest horizon to lead her back to the sea. Mistaking the distant lights on the mainland for the sky reflected on the ocean, she went the wrong way. Judging by her tracks, she had dragged herself through the sand until her flippers were buried and she could go no farther. We found her where she had given up, half cooked by the sun but still able to turn one eye up to look at us when we bent over her. I buried her in cool sand while Ed ran to the ranger station. An hour later she was on her back with tire chains around her front legs, being dragged behind a park service Jeep back toward the ocean. The dunes were so deep that her mouth filled with sand as she went. Her head bent so far underneath her that I feared her neck would break. Finally the Jeep stopped at the edge of the water. Ed and I helped the ranger unchain her and flip her back over. Then all three of us watched as she lay motionless in the surf. Every wave brought her life back to her, washing the sand from her eyes and making her shell shine again. When a particularly large one broke over her, she lifted her head and tried her back legs. The next wave made her light enough to find a foothold, and she pushed off, back into the water that was her home. Watching her swim slowly away after her nightmare ride through the dunes, I noted that it is sometimes hard to tell whether you are being killed or saved by the hands that turn your life upside down.
Barbara Brown Taylor (Learning to Walk in the Dark)
Two months in Shanghai, and what does she have to show for herself? She had been full of plans on the plane ride over, had studied her phrase book as if cramming for an exam, had been determined to refine her computational model with a new set of data, expecting insights and breakthroughs, plotting notes for a new article. Only the time has trickled away so quickly. She has meandered through the days chatting with James instead of gathering data. At night, she has gone out to dinners and bars. [James'] Chinese has not improved; her computational model has barely been touched. She does not know what she has been doing with herself, and now an airplane six days away is waiting for her.
Ruiyan Xu (The Lost and Forgotten Languages of Shanghai)
The Loneliness of the Military Historian Confess: it's my profession that alarms you. This is why few people ask me to dinner, though Lord knows I don't go out of my way to be scary. I wear dresses of sensible cut and unalarming shades of beige, I smell of lavender and go to the hairdresser's: no prophetess mane of mine, complete with snakes, will frighten the youngsters. If I roll my eyes and mutter, if I clutch at my heart and scream in horror like a third-rate actress chewing up a mad scene, I do it in private and nobody sees but the bathroom mirror. In general I might agree with you: women should not contemplate war, should not weigh tactics impartially, or evade the word enemy, or view both sides and denounce nothing. Women should march for peace, or hand out white feathers to arouse bravery, spit themselves on bayonets to protect their babies, whose skulls will be split anyway, or,having been raped repeatedly, hang themselves with their own hair. There are the functions that inspire general comfort. That, and the knitting of socks for the troops and a sort of moral cheerleading. Also: mourning the dead. Sons,lovers and so forth. All the killed children. Instead of this, I tell what I hope will pass as truth. A blunt thing, not lovely. The truth is seldom welcome, especially at dinner, though I am good at what I do. My trade is courage and atrocities. I look at them and do not condemn. I write things down the way they happened, as near as can be remembered. I don't ask why, because it is mostly the same. Wars happen because the ones who start them think they can win. In my dreams there is glamour. The Vikings leave their fields each year for a few months of killing and plunder, much as the boys go hunting. In real life they were farmers. The come back loaded with splendour. The Arabs ride against Crusaders with scimitars that could sever silk in the air. A swift cut to the horse's neck and a hunk of armour crashes down like a tower. Fire against metal. A poet might say: romance against banality. When awake, I know better. Despite the propaganda, there are no monsters, or none that could be finally buried. Finish one off, and circumstances and the radio create another. Believe me: whole armies have prayed fervently to God all night and meant it, and been slaughtered anyway. Brutality wins frequently, and large outcomes have turned on the invention of a mechanical device, viz. radar. True, valour sometimes counts for something, as at Thermopylae. Sometimes being right - though ultimate virtue, by agreed tradition, is decided by the winner. Sometimes men throw themselves on grenades and burst like paper bags of guts to save their comrades. I can admire that. But rats and cholera have won many wars. Those, and potatoes, or the absence of them. It's no use pinning all those medals across the chests of the dead. Impressive, but I know too much. Grand exploits merely depress me. In the interests of research I have walked on many battlefields that once were liquid with pulped men's bodies and spangled with exploded shells and splayed bone. All of them have been green again by the time I got there. Each has inspired a few good quotes in its day. Sad marble angels brood like hens over the grassy nests where nothing hatches. (The angels could just as well be described as vulgar or pitiless, depending on camera angle.) The word glory figures a lot on gateways. Of course I pick a flower or two from each, and press it in the hotel Bible for a souvenir. I'm just as human as you. But it's no use asking me for a final statement. As I say, I deal in tactics. Also statistics: for every year of peace there have been four hundred years of war.
Margaret Atwood (Morning in the Burned House)
This morning, Ray Bradbury is dead and there is only soy milk at my coffee shop. I do not know which to be more sad about, that my body and I are suddenly uncomfortable or that a man I have never met, far away, has stopped breathing. My heartbeat will end one day. It is a miracle it’s lasted this long, not because I have wished it otherwise, but because my car keeps overheating. My car is huge compared to my heart. A writing prompt, given to me on a bicycle ride last week: “What is the most dangerous thing you’ve done lately, and why?” I climbed the Pillsbury building, because I wanted to, because I could, or because I was bored, or because I know how, because I know that wearing dark blue at night makes you look like a cloud. Ray Bradbury’s heart is not beating anymore. The Pillsbury building is so big compared to his heart, but this morning he is dead and there is only soy milk at my coffee shop.
Lewis Mundt
What makes my bed seem hard seeing it is soft? Or why slips downe the Coverlet so oft? Although the nights be long, I sleepe not tho, My sides are sore with tumbling to and fro. Were Love the cause, it's like I shoulde descry him, Or lies he close, and shoots where none can spie him? T'was so, he stroke me with a slender dart, Tis cruell love turmoyles my captive hart. Yeelding or striving doe we give him might, Lets yeeld, a burden easly borne is light. I saw a brandisht fire increase in strength, Which being not shakt, I saw it die at length. Yong oxen newly yokt are beaten more, Then oxen which have drawne the plow before. And rough jades mouths with stubburn bits are tome, But managde horses heads are lightly borne, Unwilling Lovers, love doth more torment, Then such as in their bondage feele content. Loe I confesse, I am thy captive I, And hold my conquered hands for thee to tie. What needes thou warre, I sue to thee for grace, With armes to conquer armlesse men is base, Yoke VenusDoves, put Mirtle on thy haire, Vulcan will give thee Chariots rich and faire. The people thee applauding thou shalte stand, Guiding the harmelesse Pigeons with thy hand. Yong men and women, shalt thou lead as thrall, So will thy triumph seeme magnificall. I lately cought, will have a new made wound, And captive like be manacled and bound. Good meaning, shame, and such as seeke loves wrack Shall follow thee, their hands tied at their backe. Thee all shall feare and worship as a King, Jo, triumphing shall thy people sing. Smooth speeches, feare and rage shall by thee ride, Which troopes hath alwayes bin on Cupids side: Thou with these souldiers conquerest gods and men, Take these away, where is thy honor then? Thy mother shall from heaven applaud this show, And on their faces heapes of Roses strow. With beautie of thy wings, thy faire haire guilded, Ride golden Love in Chariots richly builded. Unlesse I erre, full many shalt thou burne, And give woundes infinite at everie turne. In spite of thee, forth will thy arrowes flie, A scorching flame burnes all the standers by. So having conquerd Inde, was Bacchus hew, Thee Pompous birds and him two tygres drew. Then seeing I grace thy show in following thee, Forbeare to hurt thy selfe in spoyling mee. Beholde thy kinsmans Caesars prosperous bandes, Who gardes the conquered with his conquering hands. -- ELEGIA 2 (Quodprimo Amore correptus, in triumphum duci se a Cupidine patiatur)
Christopher Marlowe
The year was 1952.” I clear my throat and look down at my paper. “It was summer, and Frank Sinatra was on the radio. Lana Turner and Ava Gardner were the starlets of the day. Stormy was eighteen. She was in the marching band, she was voted Best Legs, and she always had a date on Saturday night. On this particular night, she was on a date with a boy named Walt. On a dare, she went skinny-dipping in the town lake. Stormy never could turn down a dare.” Mr. Perelli laughs and says, “That’s right, she never could.” Other people murmur in agreement, “She never could.” “A farmer called the police, and when they shined their lights on the lake, Stormy told them to turn around before she would come out. She got a ride home in a police car that night.” “Not the first time or the last,” someone calls out, and everyone laughs, and I can feel my shoulders start to relax. “Stormy lived more life in one night than most people do their whole lives. She was a force of nature. She taught me that love--” My eyes well up and I start over. “Stormy taught me that love is about making brave choices every day. That’s what Stormy did. She always picked love; she always picked adventure. To her they were one and the same. And now she’s off on a new adventure, and we wish her well.
Jenny Han (Always and Forever, Lara Jean (To All the Boys I've Loved Before, #3))
You've a sentimental streak along with that iron,Keeley." "Yes,I do.And a latent romantic one." "Is that so?" he murmured, a little surprised when she turned and ran her hands up his chest. "Apparently.I didn't think you for riding to my rescue last night." "I don't recall riding anywhere." His lips twitched as she backed him out of the box. "In a manner of speaking.You cut a bully down to size for me.I was upset and worried about the gelding, so I didn't really think about it at the time.But I did later,and I wanted to thank you." "Well, you're welcome." "I haven't finished thanking you." She bit lightly on his bottom lip, heard his quick indrawn breath. "If that's what you have in mind, you could finish thanking me up in my bedroom." "Why don't I just show you what I have in mind? Right here." She had his shirt unbuttoned before he realized they were standing in an empty stall, freshly bedded with hay. "Here?" He laughed, taking both her hands to tug her out again. "I don't think so." "Here." She countered his move by ramming his back against the side wall. "I know so." "Don't be ridiculous." His lungs were clogged, and his mind insisted on following suit. "Anyone could come along?" "Live dangerously." She pulled the stall door shut behind them. "I have been,since I first set eyes on you.
Nora Roberts (Irish Rebel (Irish Hearts, #3))
He called me Jess because that is the name of the hood which restrains the falcon. I was his falcon. I hung on his arm and fed at his hand. He said my nose was sharp and cruel and that my eyes had madness in them. He said I would tear him to pieces if he dealt softly with me. At night, if he was away, he had me chained to our bed. It was a long chain, long enough for me to use the chamber pot or to stand at the window and wait for the late owls. I love to hear the owls. I love to see the sudden glide of wings spread out for prey, and then the dip and the noise like a lover in pain. He used the chain when we went riding together. I had a horse as strong as his, and he’d whip the horse from behind and send it charging through the trees, and he’d follow, half a head behind, pulling on the chain and asking me how I liked my ride. His game was to have me sit astride him when we made love and hold me tight in the small of my back. He said he had to have me above him, in case I picked his eyes out in the faltering candlelight. I was none of these things, but I became them. At night, in June I think, I flew off his wrist and tore his liver from his body, and bit my chain in pieces and left him on the bed with his eyes open. He looked surprised, I don’t know why. As your lover describes you, so you are.
Jeanette Winterson (Sexing the Cherry)
There is no pain - just travel. On her knees, she stays still as a supplicant ready for communion. It is very quiet. All of a sudden there is no hurry. There will be time for everything. For the breezes that blow and for the rainwater drying in the gutters, for Maury to find a place of safety in the world, for Malcolm to come back from the dead and ask her about birds and jets. For the big things too, things like beauty and vengeance and honor and righteousness and the grace of God and the slow spilling of the earth from day to night and back to day again. It is spread out before her, compressed into one single moment. She will be able to see it all -- if she can keep her sleepy eyes open. It's like a dream where she is. Like a dream where you find yourself underwater and you are panicked for a moment until you realize you no longer need to breathe, and you can stay under the surface forever. She feels her body falling sideways to the ground. It happens slow - and she expects a crash that never comes because her mind is jumping and it doesn't know which way is up anymore, like the moon above her and the fish below her and her in between floating, like on the surface of the river, floating between sea and sky, the world all skin, all meniscus, and she a part of it too. Moses Todd told her if you lean over the rail at Niagara Falls it takes your breath away, like turning yourself inside out -- and Lee the hunter told her that one time people used to stuff themselves in barrels and ride over the edge. And she is there too, floating out over the edge of the falls, the roar of the water so deafening it's like hearing nothing at all, like pillows in your ears, and the water exactly the temperature of your skin, like you are falling and the water is falling, and the water is just more of you, like everything is just more of you, just different configurations of the things that make you up. She is there, and she's sailing out and down over the falls, down and down, and it takes a long time because the falls are one of God's great mysteries and so high they are higher than any building, and so she is held there, spinning in the air, her eyes closed because she's spinning on the inside too, down and down. She wonders if she will ever hit the bottom, wonders will the splash ever come. Maybe not - because God is a slick god, and he knows things about infinities. Infinities are warm places that never end. And they aren't about good and evil, they're just peaceful-like and calm, and they're where all travelers go eventually, and they are round everywhere you look because you can't have any edges in infinities. And also they make forever seem like an okay thing.
Alden Bell (The Reapers are the Angels (Reapers, #1))
Taking Off Emily Dickinson’s Clothes" First, her tippet made of tulle, easily lifted off her shoulders and laid on the back of a wooden chair. And her bonnet, the bow undone with a light forward pull. Then the long white dress, a more complicated matter with mother-of-pearl buttons down the back, so tiny and numerous that it takes forever before my hands can part the fabric, like a swimmer’s dividing water, and slip inside. You will want to know that she was standing by an open window in an upstairs bedroom, motionless, a little wide-eyed, looking out at the orchard below, the white dress puddled at her feet on the wide-board, hardwood floor. The complexity of women’s undergarments in nineteenth-century America is not to be waved off, and I proceeded like a polar explorer through clips, clasps, and moorings, catches, straps, and whalebone stays, sailing toward the iceberg of her nakedness. Later, I wrote in a notebook it was like riding a swan into the night, but, of course, I cannot tell you everything— the way she closed her eyes to the orchard, how her hair tumbled free of its pins, how there were sudden dashes whenever we spoke. What I can tell you is it was terribly quiet in Amherst that Sabbath afternoon, nothing but a carriage passing the house, a fly buzzing in a windowpane. So I could plainly hear her inhale when I undid the very top hook-and-eye fastener of her corset and I could hear her sigh when finally it was unloosed, the way some readers sigh when they realize that Hope has feathers, that Reason is a plank, that Life is a loaded gun that looks right at you with a yellow eye.
Billy Collins (Taking Off Emily Dickinson's Clothes)
Now the evening's at its noon, its meridian. The outgoing tide has simmered down, and there's a lull-like the calm in the eye of a hurricane - before the reverse tide starts to set in. The last acts of the three-act plays are now on, and the after-theater eating places are beginning to fill up with early comers; Danny's and Lindy's - yes, and Horn & Hardart too. Everybody has got where they wanted to go - and that was out somewhere. Now everybody will want to get back where they came from - and that's home somewhere. Or as the coffee-grinder radio, always on the beam, put it at about this point: 'New York, New York, it's a helluva town, The Bronx is up, the Battery's down, And the people ride around in a hole in the ground. Now the incoming tide rolls in; the hours abruptly switch back to single digits again, and it's a little like the time you put your watch back on entering a different time zone. Now the buses knock off and the subway expresses turn into locals and the locals space themselves far apart; and as Johnny Carson's face hits millions of screens all at one and the same time, the incoming tide reaches its crest and pounds against the shore. There's a sudden splurge, a slew of taxis arriving at the hotel entrance one by one as regularly as though they were on a conveyor belt, emptying out and then going away again. Then this too dies down, and a deep still sets in. It's an around-the-clock town, but this is the stretch; from now until the garbage-grinding trucks come along and tear the dawn to shreds, it gets as quiet as it's ever going to get. This is the deep of the night, the dregs, the sediment at the bottom of the coffee cup. The blue hours; when guys' nerves get tauter and women's fears get greater. Now guys and girls make love, or kill each other or sometimes both. And as the windows on the 'Late Show' title silhouette light up one by one, the real ones all around go dark. And from now on the silence is broken only by the occasional forlorn hoot of a bogged-down drunk or the gutted-cat squeal of a too sharply swerved axle coming around a turn. Or as Billy Daniels sang it in Golden Boy: While the city sleeps, And the streets are clear, There's a life that's happening here. ("New York Blues")
Cornell Woolrich (Night and Fear: A Centenary Collection of Stories)
It is said in those districts that not all the trains which run on the city’s tracks are listed in Metropolitan Transit’s compendious schedule. The residents will tell you that after midnight, on some nights, there will be other trains, trains whose cry is different, the bellow of some great beast fighting for its life. And if you watch those trains go past, behind those bright flickering windows you will see passengers unlike any passengers you have seen when riding the trains yourself: men with wings, women with horns, beast-headed children, fauns and dryads and green-skinned people more beautiful than words can describe. In 1893, a schoolteacher swore that she saw a unicorn; in 1934, a murderer turned himself into the police, weeping, saying that he saw his victims staring at him from a train as it howled past the station platform on which he stood. These are the seraphic trains. The stories say they run to Heaven, Hell, and Faërie. They are omens, but no one can agree on what they portend. And although you will never meet anyone who has seen or experienced it, there are persistent rumors, unkillable rumors, that sometimes, maybe once a century, maybe twice, a seraphic train will stop in its baying progress and open its doors for a mortal. Those who know the story of Thomas the Rhymer—and even some who don’t—insist that all these people, blest or damned as they may be, must be poets.
Sarah Monette (Somewhere Beneath Those Waves)
But at that moment all I could see was the wolf in the white van, so alive, so strong. Hidden from view, unnoticed, concealed. And I thought, maybe he's real, this wolf, and he's really out there in a white van somewhere, riding around. Maybe he's in the far back, pacing back and forth, circling, the pads of his huge paws raw and cracking, his thick, sharp claws dully clicking against the raised rusty steel track ridges on the floor. Maybe he's sound asleep, or maybe he's just pretending. And then the van stops somewhere, maybe, and somebody gets out and walks around the side to the back and grabs hold of the handle and flings the doors open wide. Maybe whoever's kept him wears a mechanic's jumpsuit and some sunglasses, and he hasn't fed the great wolf for weeks, cruising the streets of the city at night, and the wolf's crazy with hunger now; he can't even think. Maybe he's not locked up in the back at all: he could be riding in the passenger seat, like a dog, just sitting and staring out the open window, looking around, checking everybody out. Maybe he's over in the other seat behind the steering wheel. Maybe he's driving.
John Darnielle (Wolf in White Van)
Strange memories on this nervous night in Las Vegas. Five years later? Six? It seems like a lifetime, or at least a Main Era—the kind of peak that never comes again. San Francisco in the middle sixties was a very special time and place to be a part of. Maybe it meant something. Maybe not, in the long run… but no explanation, no mix of words or music or memories can touch that sense of knowing that you were there and alive in that corner of time and the world. Whatever it meant.… History is hard to know, because of all the hired bullshit, but even without being sure of "history" it seems entirely reasonable to think that every now and then the energy of a whole generation comes to a head in a long fine flash, for reasons that nobody really understands at the time—and which never explain, in retrospect, what actually happened. My central memory of that time seems to hang on one or five or maybe forty nights—or very early mornings—when I left the Fillmore half-crazy and, instead of going home, aimed the big 650 Lightning across the Bay Bridge at a hundred miles an hour wearing L. L. Bean shorts and a Butte sheepherder's jacket… booming through the Treasure Island tunnel at the lights of Oakland and Berkeley and Richmond, not quite sure which turn-off to take when I got to the other end (always stalling at the toll-gate, too twisted to find neutral while I fumbled for change)... but being absolutely certain that no matter which way I went I would come to a place where people were just as high and wild as I was: No doubt at all about that… There was madness in any direction, at any hour. If not across the Bay, then up the Golden Gate or down 101 to Los Altos or La Honda.… You could strike sparks anywhere. There was a fantastic universal sense that whatever we were doing was right, that we were winning.… And that, I think, was the handle—that sense of inevitable victory over the forces of Old and Evil. Not in any mean or military sense; we didn't need that. Our energy would simply prevail. There was no point in fighting—on our side or theirs. We had all the momentum; we were riding the crest of a high and beautiful wave.… So now, less than five years later, you can go up on a steep hill in Las Vegas and look West, and with the right kind of eyes you can almost see the high-water mark—that place where the wave finally broke and rolled back.
Hunter S. Thompson (Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas)
He had plans, but his hopes for higher education, like all his others, were built on “mights.” He might go hang out somewhere, with someone. He might get a job and earn some money. He might go to college, a really old school with gray stone buildings and an enormous library. He was thinking of applying next year. Maybe the year after. He wasn’t thinking about application deadlines. That sort of detail wasn’t a part of his plan. Not at the moment. And why tell his mother about this anyway? It would rekindle her expectations, and she’d only start riding him again. Better to let it be. When his dad came home, they’d sort it out together. His mother retreated into her world, Silas into his. What a family, his mother would say, but until now, Silas had never realized that they weren’t really much of one. The names of the days retreated from them both, and soon after the school term ended, Silas was no longer sure what day of the week it was. Every morning when he woke up, he missed his father more keenly than the night before, but the details and differences of each day blurred and eventually vanished. For Silas, the passage of time became a longing ache in his heart that grew daily worse.
Ari Berk (Death Watch (The Undertaken, #1))
In Laos, a baby was never apart from its mother, sleeping in her arms all night and riding on her back all day. Small children were rarely abused; it was believed that a dab who witnessed mistreatment might take the child, assuming it was not wanted. The Hmong who live in the United States have continued to be unusually attentive parents. A study conducted at the University of Minnesota found Hmong infants in the first month of life to be less irritable and more securely attached to their mothers than Caucasian infants, a difference the researcher attributed to the fact that the Hmong mothers were, without exception, more sensitive, more accepting, and more responsive, as well as “exquisitely attuned” to their children’s signals. Another study, conducted in Portland, Oregon, found that Hmong mothers held and touched their babies far more frequently than Caucasian mothers. In a third study, conducted at the Hennepin County Medical Center in Minnesota, a group of Hmong mothers of toddlers surpassed a group of Caucasian mothers of similar socioeconomic status in every one of fourteen categories selected from the Egeland Mother-Child Rating Scale, ranging from “Speed of Responsiveness to Fussing and Crying” to “Delight.
Anne Fadiman (The Spirit Catches You and You Fall Down: A Hmong Child, Her American Doctors, and the Collision of Two Cultures)
1 The summer our marriage failed we picked sage to sweeten our hot dark car. We sat in the yard with heavy glasses of iced tea, talking about which seeds to sow when the soil was cool. Praising our large, smooth spinach leaves, free this year of Fusarium wilt, downy mildew, blue mold. And then we spoke of flowers, and there was a joke, you said, about old florists who were forced to make other arrangements. Delphiniums flared along the back fence. All summer it hurt to look at you. 2 I heard a woman on the bus say, “He and I were going in different directions.” As if it had something to do with a latitude or a pole. Trying to write down how love empties itself from a house, how a view changes, how the sign for infinity turns into a noose for a couple. Trying to say that weather weighed down all the streets we traveled on, that if gravel sinks, it keeps sinking. How can I blame you who kneeled day after day in wet soil, pulling slugs from the seedlings? You who built a ten-foot arch for the beans, who hated a bird feeder left unfilled. You who gave carrots to a gang of girls on bicycles. 3 On our last trip we drove through rain to a town lit with vacancies. We’d come to watch whales. At the dock we met five other couples—all of us fluorescent, waterproof, ready for the pitch and frequency of the motor that would lure these great mammals near. The boat chugged forward—trailing a long, creamy wake. The captain spoke from a loudspeaker: In winter gray whales love Laguna Guerrero; it’s warm and calm, no killer whales gulp down their calves. Today we’ll see them on their way to Alaska. If we get close enough, observe their eyes—they’re bigger than baseballs, but can only look down. Whales can communicate at a distance of 300 miles—but it’s my guess they’re all saying, Can you hear me? His laughter crackled. When he told us Pink Floyd is slang for a whale’s two-foot penis, I stopped listening. The boat rocked, and for two hours our eyes were lost in the waves—but no whales surfaced, blowing or breaching or expelling water through baleen plates. Again and again you patiently wiped the spray from your glasses. We smiled to each other, good troopers used to disappointment. On the way back you pointed at cormorants riding the waves— you knew them by name: the Brants, the Pelagic, the double-breasted. I only said, I’m sure whales were swimming under us by the dozens. 4 Trying to write that I loved the work of an argument, the exhaustion of forgiving, the next morning, washing our handprints off the wineglasses. How I loved sitting with our friends under the plum trees, in the white wire chairs, at the glass table. How you stood by the grill, delicately broiling the fish. How the dill grew tall by the window. Trying to explain how camellias spoil and bloom at the same time, how their perfume makes lovers ache. Trying to describe the ways sex darkens and dies, how two bodies can lie together, entwined, out of habit. Finding themselves later, tired, by a fire, on an old couch that no longer reassures. The night we eloped we drove to the rainforest and found ourselves in fog so thick our lights were useless. There’s no choice, you said, we must have faith in our blindness. How I believed you. Trying to imagine the road beneath us, we inched forward, honking, gently, again and again.
Dina Ben-Lev
(I know, it's a poem but oh well). Why! who makes much of a miracle? As to me, I know of nothing else but miracles, Whether I walk the streets of Manhattan, Or dart my sight over the roofs of houses toward the sky, Or wade with naked feet along the beach, just in the edge of the water, Or stand under trees in the woods, Or talk by day with any one I love--or sleep in the bed at night with any one I love, Or sit at table at dinner with my mother, Or look at strangers opposite me riding in the car, Or watch honey-bees busy around the hive, of a summer forenoon, Or animals feeding in the fields, Or birds--or the wonderfulness of insects in the air, Or the wonderfulness of the sun-down--or of stars shining so quiet and bright, Or the exquisite, delicate, thin curve of the new moon in spring; Or whether I go among those I like best, and that like me best-- mechanics, boatmen, farmers, Or among the savans--or to the soiree--or to the opera, Or stand a long while looking at the movements of machinery, Or behold children at their sports, Or the admirable sight of the perfect old man, or the perfect old woman, Or the sick in hospitals, or the dead carried to burial, Or my own eyes and figure in the glass; These, with the rest, one and all, are to me miracles, The whole referring--yet each distinct, and in its place. To me, every hour of the light and dark is a miracle, Every cubic inch of space is a miracle, Every square yard of the surface of the earth is spread with the same, Every foot of the interior swarms with the same; Every spear of grass--the frames, limbs, organs, of men and women, and all that concerns them, All these to me are unspeakably perfect miracles. To me the sea is a continual miracle; The fishes that swim--the rocks--the motion of the waves--the ships, with men in them, What stranger miracles are there?
Walt Whitman
Pulling to a stop in front of Aly’s house, I take a deep breath. With a flick of my wrist, I cut the engine and listen to the silence. I’ve sat in this exact spot more times than I can count. In many ways, Aly’s house is like my sanctuary. A place I go when my own home feels like a graveyard. I glance up at the bedroom window of the girl who knows me better than anyone, the only person I let see me cry after Dad died. I won’t let this experiment take that or her away from me. Tonight, I’m going to prove that Aly and I can go back to our normal, easy friendship. Throwing open my door, I trudge up her sidewalk, plant my feet outside her front door, and ring the bell. “Coming!” I step back and see Aly stick her head out of her second-story window. “No problem,” I call back up. “Take your time.” More time to get my head on straight. Aly disappears behind a film of yellow curtain, and I turn to look out at the quiet neighborhood. Up and down the street, the lights blink on, filling the air with a low hum that matches the thrumming of my nerves. Across the street, old Mr. Lawson sits at his usual perch under a gigantic American flag, drinking beer and mumbling to himself. Two little girls ride their bikes around the cul-de-sac, smiling and waving. Just a normal, run-of-the-mill Friday night. Except not. I thrust my hands into my pockets, jiggling the loose change from my Taco Bell run earlier tonight, and grab my pack of Trident. I toss a stick into my mouth and chew furiously. Supposedly, the smell of peppermint can calm your nerves. I grab a second stick and shove it in, too. With the clacking sound of Aly’s shoes approaching the door behind me, I remind myself again about tonight’s mission. All I need is focus. I take another deep breath for good measure and rock back on my heels, ready to greet my best friend. She opens the door, wearing a black dress molded to her skin, and I let the air out in one big huff.
Rachel Harris (The Fine Art of Pretending (The Fine Art of Pretending, #1))
She had no criticism of his dress, which was bagged at the knees, dropping at the lapels, rucked around the buttons, while she-although she wore a flowing white cotton-appeared (she knew it and wished it was not so) as starched and pressed as a Baptist in a riding habit. They were different, and yet not ill matched. They had both grown used to the attentions that are the eccentric’s lot-the covert glances, smiles, whispers, worse. Lucinda was accustomed to looking at no one in the street. It was an out-of-focus town of men with seas of bobbing hats. But on this night she felt the streets accept them. She thought: When we are two, they do not notice us. They think us a match. What wisdom does a mob have? It is a hydra, an organism, stupid or dangerous in much of its behaviour, but could it have, in spite of this, a proper judgement about which of its component parts fit best together? They pushed past bold-eyed young women with too many ribbons and jewels, past tight-laced maidens and complacent merchants with their bellies pushing so forcefully against their waistcoats that their shirts showed above their trousers. Lucinda was happy. Her arm rested on Oscar’s arm. She thought: Anyone can see I have been crying. She thought: I have pink eyes like a dormouse. But she did not really care.
Peter Carey (Oscar and Lucinda)
My laboratory is a place where I write. I have become proficient at producing a rare species of prose capable of distilling ten years of work by five people into six published pages, written in a language that very few people can read and that no one ever speaks. This writing relates the details of my work with the precision of a laser scalpel, but its streamlined beauty is a type of artifice, a size-zero mannequin designed to showcase the glory of a dress that would be much less perfect on any real person. My papers do not display the footnotes that they have earned, the table of data that required painstaking months to redo when a graduate student quit, sneering on her way out that she didn’t want a life like mine. The paragraph that took five hours to write while riding on a plane, stunned with grief, flying to a funeral that I couldn’t believe was happening. The early draft that my toddler covered in crayon and applesauce while it was still warm from the printer. Although my publications contain meticulous details of the plants that did grow, the runs that went smoothly, and the data that materialized, they perpetrate a disrespectful amnesia against the entire gardens that rotted in fungus and dismay, the electrical signals that refused to stabilize, and the printer ink cartridges that we secured late at night through nefarious means. I
Hope Jahren (Lab Girl)
The Last Hero The wind blew out from Bergen from the dawning to the day, There was a wreck of trees and fall of towers a score of miles away, And drifted like a livid leaf I go before its tide, Spewed out of house and stable, beggared of flag and bride. The heavens are bowed about my head, shouting like seraph wars, With rains that might put out the sun and clean the sky of stars, Rains like the fall of ruined seas from secret worlds above, The roaring of the rains of God none but the lonely love. Feast in my hall, O foemen, and eat and drink and drain, You never loved the sun in heaven as I have loved the rain. The chance of battle changes -- so may all battle be; I stole my lady bride from them, they stole her back from me. I rent her from her red-roofed hall, I rode and saw arise, More lovely than the living flowers the hatred in her eyes. She never loved me, never bent, never was less divine; The sunset never loved me, the wind was never mine. Was it all nothing that she stood imperial in duresse? Silence itself made softer with the sweeping of her dress. O you who drain the cup of life, O you who wear the crown, You never loved a woman's smile as I have loved her frown. The wind blew out from Bergen to the dawning of the day, They ride and run with fifty spears to break and bar my way, I shall not die alone, alone, but kin to all the powers, As merry as the ancient sun and fighting like the flowers. How white their steel, how bright their eyes! I love each laughing knave, Cry high and bid him welcome to the banquet of the brave. Yea, I will bless them as they bend and love them where they lie, When on their skulls the sword I swing falls shattering from the sky. The hour when death is like a light and blood is like a rose, -- You never loved your friends, my friends, as I shall love my foes. Know you what earth shall lose to-night, what rich uncounted loans, What heavy gold of tales untold you bury with my bones? My loves in deep dim meadows, my ships that rode at ease, Ruffling the purple plumage of strange and secret seas. To see this fair earth as it is to me alone was given, The blow that breaks my brow to-night shall break the dome of heaven. The skies I saw, the trees I saw after no eyes shall see, To-night I die the death of God; the stars shall die with me; One sound shall sunder all the spears and break the trumpet's breath: You never laughed in all your life as I shall laugh in death.
G.K. Chesterton
justice, n. I tell you about Sal Kinsey, the boy who spit on me every morning for a month in seventh grade, to the point that I could no longer ride the bus. It’s just a story, nothing more than that. In fact, it comes up because I’m telling you how I don’t really hate many people in this world, and you say that’s hard to believe, and I say, “Well, there’s always Sal Kinsey,” and then have to explain. The next day, you bring home a photo of him now, downloaded from the Internet. He is morbidly obese — one of my favorite phrases, so goth, so judgmental. He looks miserable, and the profile you've found says he’s single and actively looking. I think that will be it. But then, the next night, you tell me that you tracked down his office address. And not only that, you sent him a dozen roses, signing the card, It is so refreshing to see that you've grown up to be fat, desperate, and lonely. Anonymous, of course. You even ordered the bouquet online, so no florist could divulge your personal information. I can’t help but admire your capacity for creative vengeance. And at the same time, I am afraid of it.
David Levithan (The Lover's Dictionary)
Hubris you say, brother? Please, tell us the nature of the prince's actions against you. Let everyone know exactly how Prince Styxx offended you." Bethany Disguised as Athena "He has held himself up as a god. His arrogance and pride are an affront to us all." Apollo "Held himself up as a god? Pray tell, when was this? .... Ah, yes, I remember... It was when he dared to slay your Atlantean grandson during battle. Is that not right, brother? I'm sure, like me, you remember that day well. The Atlanteans, led to our shores by your own blood kin, were slaughtering hundreds of Greeks until the beach sands turned red from good Greek blood. The onslaught was so fierce that entire veteran regiments fled from the Atlanteans and cowered. Even the brave, noble Dorians pulled back in fear. But not Prince Styxx. He rode in like a lion and jumped from his horse to save the life of a young shield-bearer who was about to be killed by one of the Atlantean giants." Bethany/Athena Bethany swept her gaze around the people there, who were completely silent now. "And with reckless disregard for his own life and limb, this prince picked the boy up and put him on the back of his royal steed and told him to ride to safety. He spent the rest of the day fighting on foot. Not as a prince or a god, but as a mere, heroic Greek soldier." She turned back to Apollo. "His actions so enraged the Atlantean gods that they turned all of their animosity toward him. And still Prince Styxx fought on for his people, wounded, bloody, and tired. He never backed off or backed down. Not even when your own grandson almost buried his axe through the prince's skull. He hit Styxx's hoplon so hard, it splintered a portion of it off. And as Xan held the prince down, the prince, who was barely more than a child, managed to stab him through the ribs. But now that I think about it, you don't remember that day, do you, Apollo? You weren't even there when it was fought, but later that very night-
Sherrilyn Kenyon (Styxx (Dark-Hunter, #22))
But now I speculate re the ants' invisible organ of aggregate thought... if, in a city park of broad reaches, winding paths, roadways, and lakes, you can imagine seeing on a warm and sunny Sunday afternoon the random and unpredictable movement of great numbers of human beings in the same way... if you watch one person, one couple, one family, a child, you can assure yourself of the integrity of the individual will and not be able to divine what the next moment will bring. But when the masses are celebrating a beautiful day in the park in a prescribed circulation of activities, the wider lens of thought reveals nothing errant, nothing inconstant or unnatural to the occasion. And if someone acts in a mutant un-park manner, alarms go off, the unpredictable element, a purse snatcher, a gun wielder, is isolated, surrounded, ejected, carried off as waste. So that while we are individually and privately dyssynchronous, moving in different ways, for different purposes, in different directions, we may at the same time comprise, however blindly, the pulsing communicating cells of an urban over-brain. The intent of this organ is to enjoy an afternoon in the park, as each of us street-grimy urbanites loves to do. In the backs of our minds when we gather for such days, do we know this? How much of our desire to use the park depends on the desires of others to do the same? How much of the idea of a park is in the genetic invitation on nice days to reflect our massive neuromorphology? There is no central control mechanism telling us when and how to use the park. That is up to us. But when we do, our behavior there is reflective, we can see more of who we are because of the open space accorded to us, and it is possible that it takes such open space to realize in simple form the ordinary identity we have as one multicellular culture of thought that is always there, even when, in the comparative blindness of our personal selfhood, we are flowing through the streets at night or riding under them, simultaneously, as synaptic impulses in the metropolitan brain. Is this a stretch? But think of the contingent human mind, how fast it snaps onto the given subject, how easily it is introduced to an idea, an image that it had not dreamt of thinking of a millisecond before... Think of how the first line of a story yokes the mind into a place, a time, in the time it takes to read it. How you can turn on the radio and suddenly be in the news, and hear it and know it as your own mind's possession in the moment's firing of a neuron. How when you hear a familiar song your mind adopts its attitudinal response to life before the end of the first bar. How the opening credits of a movie provide the parameters of your emotional life for its ensuing two hours... How all experience is instantaneous and instantaneously felt, in the nature of ordinary mind-filling revelation. The permeable mind, contingently disposed for invasion, can be totally overrun and occupied by all the characteristics of the world, by everything that is the case, and by the thoughts and propositions of all other minds considering everything that is the case... as instantly and involuntarily as the eye fills with the objects that pass into its line of vision.
E.L. Doctorow (City of God)
Time would heal the wound that was Frank; the world would continue to spin, to wobble, its axis only slightly skewed, momentarily displaced, by the brief, shuddering existence of one man -one THING - a post-human mutant, a blurred Xerox copy of a human being, the offspring of the waste of technology, the bent shadow of a fallen angel; Frank was all of these things. . . he was the sum of everything dark and sticky, the congealment of all things wrong and dark and foul in this world and every other seedy rathole world in every back-alley universe throughout the vast garbage dump of creation; God rolled the dice and Frank lost. . . he was a spiritual flunkie, a universal pain-in-the-ass, a joy-riding, soul-sucking cosmic punk rolling through time and space and piling up a karmic debt of such immense magnitude so as to invariably glue the particular vehicle of the immediate moment to the basement of possibility - planet earth - and force Frank to RE-ENLIST, endlessly, to return, over and over, to a flawed world somewhere to spend the Warhol-film-loop nights of eternity serving concurrent life sentences roaming the dimly lit hallways of always, stuck in the dense overshoes of physicality, forever, until finally - one would hope there is always a FINALLY - eventually, anyway - God would step in and say ENOUGH ALREADY and grab Frank by the collar of one of his thrift-shop polyester flower-print shirts and hurl him out the back door of the cosmos, expelling the rotten orb into the great wide nothingness and out of our lives - sure, that would be nice - but so would a new Cadillac - quit dreaming - it just doesn't work that way. . .
George Mangels (Frank's World)
What did I do now?” He reluctantly pulled the car the curb. I needed to get out of this car – like now. I couldn’t breathe. I unbuckled and flung open the door. “Thanks for the ride. Bye.” I slammed the door shut and began down the sidewalk. Behind me, I heard the engine turn off and his door open and shut. I quickened my stride as James jogged up to me. I slowed down knowing I couldn’t escape his long legs anyway. Plus, I didn’t want to get home all sweaty and have to explain myself. “What happened?” James asked, matching my pace. “Leave me alone!” I snapped back. I felt his hand grab my elbow, halting me easily. “Stop,” he ordered. Damn it, he’s strong! “What are you pissed about now?” He towered over me. I was trapped in front of him, if he tugged a bit, I’d be in his embrace. “It’s so funny huh? I’m that bad? I’m a clown, I’m so funny!” I jerked my arm, trying to break free of his grip. “Let me go!” “No!” He squeezed tighter, pulling me closer. “Leave me alone!” I spit the words like venom, pulling my arm with all my might. “What’s your problem?” James demanded loudly. His hand tightened on my arm with each attempt to pull away. My energy was dwindling and I was mentally exhausted. I stopped jerking my arm back, deciding it was pointless because he was too strong; there was no way I could pull my arm back without first kneeing him in the balls. We were alone, standing in the dark of night in a neighborhood that didn’t see much traffic. “Fireball?” he murmured softly. “What?” I replied quietly, defeated. Hesitantly, he asked, “Did I say something to make you sad?” I wasn’t going to mention the boyfriend thing; there was no way. “Yes,” I whimpered. That’s just great, way to sound strong there, now he’ll have no reason not to pity you! “I’m sorry,” came his quiet reply. Well maybe ‘I’m sorry’ just isn’t good enough. The damage is already done! “Whatever.” “What can I do to make it all better?” “There’s nothing you could–” I began but was interrupted by him pulling me against his body. His arms encircled my waist, holding me tight. My arms instinctively bent upwards, hands firmly planted against his solid chest. Any resentment I had swiftly melted away as something brand new took its place: pleasure. Jesus! “What do you think you’re doing?” I asked him softly; his face was only a few inches from mine. “What do you think you’re doing?” James asked back, looking down at my hands on his chest. I slowly slid my arms up around his neck. I can’t believe I just did that! “That’s better.” Our bodies were plastered against one another; I felt a new kind of nervousness touch every single inch of my body, it prickled electrically. “James,” I murmured softly. “Fireball,” he whispered back. “What do you think you’re doing?” I repeated; my brain felt frozen. My heart had stopped beating a mile a minute instead issuing slow, heavy beats. James uncurled one of his arms from my waist and trailed it along my back to the base of my neck, holding it firmly yet delicately. Blood rushed to the very spot he was holding, heat filled my eyes as I stared at him. “What are you doing?” My bewilderment was audible in the hush. I wasn’t sure I had the capacity to speak anymore. That function had fled along with the bitch. Her replacement was a delicate flower that yearned to be touched and taken care of. I felt his hand shift on my neck, ever so slightly, causing my head to tilt up to him. Slowly, inch by inch, his face descended on mine, stopping just a breath away from my trembling lips. I wanted it. Badly. My lips parted a fraction, letting a thread of air escape. “Can I?” His breath was warm on my lips. Fuck it! “Yeah,” I whispered back. He closed the distance until his lush lips covered mine. My first kiss…damn! His lips moved softly over mine. I felt his grip on my neck squeeze as his lips pressed deeper into
Sarah Tork (Young Annabelle (Y.A #1))
Telegraph Road A long time ago came a man on a track Walking thirty miles with a pack on his back And he put down his load where he thought it was the best Made a home in the wilderness He built a cabin and a winter store And he ploughed up the ground by the cold lake shore And the other travellers came riding down the track And they never went further, no, they never went back Then came the churches, then came the schools Then came the lawyers, then came the rules Then came the trains and the trucks with their loads And the dirty old track was the telegraph road Then came the mines - then came the ore Then there was the hard times, then there was a war Telegraph sang a song about the world outside Telegraph road got so deep and so wide Like a rolling river ... And my radio says tonight it's gonna freeze People driving home from the factories There's six lanes of traffic Three lanes moving slow ... I used to like to go to work but they shut it down I got a right to go to work but there's no work here to be found Yes and they say we're gonna have to pay what's owed We're gonna have to reap from some seed that's been sowed And the birds up on the wires and the telegraph poles They can always fly away from this rain and this cold You can hear them singing out their telegraph code All the way down the telegraph road You know I'd sooner forget but I remember those nights When life was just a bet on a race between the lights You had your head on my shoulder, you had your hand in my hair Now you act a little colder like you don't seem to care But believe in me baby and I'll take you away From out of this darkness and into the day From these rivers of headlights, these rivers of rain From the anger that lives on the streets with these names 'Cos I've run every red light on memory lane I've seen desperation explode into flames And I don't want to see it again ... From all of these signs saying sorry but we're closed All the way down the telegraph road
Mark Knopfler (Dire Straits - 1982-91)
A woman named Cynthia once told me a story about the time her father had made plans to take her on a night out in San Francisco. Twelve-year-old Cynthia and her father had been planning the “date” for months. They had a whole itinerary planned down to the minute: she would attend the last hour of his presentation, and then meet him at the back of the room at about four-thirty and leave quickly before everyone tried to talk to him. They would catch a tram to Chinatown, eat Chinese food (their favourite), shop for a souvenir, see the sights for a while and then “catch a flick” as her dad liked to say. Then they would grab a taxi back to the hotel, jump in the pool for a quick swim (her dad was famous for sneaking in when the pool was closed), order a hot fudge sundae from room service, and watch the late, late show. They discussed the details over and over again before they left. The anticipation was part of the whole experience. This was all going according to plan until, as her father was leaving the convention centre, he ran into an old college friend and business associate. It had been years since they had seen each other, and Cynthia watched as they embraced enthusiastically. His friend said, in effect: “I am so glad you are doing some work with our company now. When Lois and I heard about it we thought it would be perfect. We want to invite you, and of course Cynthia, to get a spectacular seafood dinner down at the Wharf!” Cynthia’s father responded: “Bob, it’s so great to see you. Dinner at the wharf sounds great!” Cynthia was crestfallen. Her daydreams of tram rides and ice cream sundaes evaporated in an instant. Plus, she hated seafood and she could just imagine how bored she would be listening to the adults talk all night. But then her father continued: “But not tonight. Cynthia and I have a special date planned, don’t we?” He winked at Cynthia and grabbed her hand and they ran out of the door and continued with what was an unforgettable night in San Francisco. As it happens, Cynthia’s father was the management thinker Stephen R. Covey (author of The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People) who had passed away only weeks before Cynthia told me this story. So it was with deep emotion she recalled that evening in San Francisco. His simple decision “Bonded him to me forever because I knew what mattered most to him was me!” she said.5 One simple answer is we are unclear about what is essential. When this happens we become defenceless. On the other hand, when we have strong internal clarity it is almost as if we have a force field protecting us from the non-essentials coming at us from all directions. With Rosa it was her deep moral clarity that gave her unusual courage of conviction. With Stephen it was the clarity of his vision for the evening with his loving daughter. In virtually every instance, clarity about what is essential fuels us with the strength to say no to the non-essentials. Stephen R. Covey, one of the most respected and widely read business thinkers of his generation, was an Essentialist. Not only did he routinely teach Essentialist principles – like “The main thing is to keep the main thing the main thing” – to important leaders and heads of state around the world, he lived them.6 And in this moment of living them with his daughter he made a memory that literally outlasted his lifetime. Seen with some perspective, his decision seems obvious. But many in his shoes would have accepted the friend’s invitation for fear of seeming rude or ungrateful, or passing up a rare opportunity to dine with an old friend. So why is it so hard in the moment to dare to choose what is essential over what is non-essential?
Greg McKeown (Essentialism: The Disciplined Pursuit of Less)
Kevin tried to sleep with a pillow tight over his face, and he nearly suffocated himself. When he tiptoed over to close the door, they were talking in a subdued tone on the narrow couch. Colette's bare legs were curled up on the pillows, her head riding on the camelback motion of his chest. But her eyes were open, and she looked more adrift than comforted. In a tired baritone, Jerry was talking about prison. It was a horror story -- about the echoing screams of young kids and eyeballs cut open with smuggled razor blades, beginning as the usual speech about the hell he'd seen. But somehow it bcame a lonesome country-western love song, about how every long night of his life he had dreamed of a woman like her-- quick-witted and beautiful and tenacious. It was more than Kevin expected from the man. He told her that if he could buy her safe passage out of this life, hers and Kevin's, he would; but it was hard with a teenage son always pressing to know more and a tiring and insatiable young girlfriend who wanted to devour the world. Think of the pressure on him. "You need to know that we're together like this partly because of you. You keep us up and running. I know it and Kevin knows it. I'm not a good person, Colette -- I never claimed to be, I don't want to be, and you can't expect me to be. But look me in the eye and accept me as a snake, and I'll tell you whatever you're waiting to hear: I need you, I want you, I hurt for you, down in the dust, honey, down in the dust of my bones." She interrupted him with kisses that sounded like determined sips at a scalding drink.
Peter Craig (Hot Plastic)