Not For The Faint Of Heart Quotes

We've searched our database for all the quotes and captions related to Not For The Faint Of Heart. Here they are! All 100 of them:

Fortune is not on the side of the faint-hearted.
Sophocles
If I can stop one heart from breaking, I shall not live in vain; If I can ease one life the aching, Or cool one pain, Or help one fainting robin Unto his nest again, I shall not live in vain.
Emily Dickinson
I can't sleep, I can't eat, I can't do anything but think about him. At night I dream of him, all day I wait to see him, and when I do see him my heart turns over and I think I will faint with desire.
Philippa Gregory (The Other Boleyn Girl (The Plantagenet and Tudor Novels, #9))
Once upon a midnight dreary, while I pondered, weak and weary, Over many a quaint and curious volume of forgotten lore, While I nodded, nearly napping, suddenly there came a tapping, As of some one gently rapping, rapping at my chamber door. Tis some visitor," I muttered, "tapping at my chamber door — Only this, and nothing more." Ah, distinctly I remember it was in the bleak December, And each separate dying ember wrought its ghost upon the floor. Eagerly I wished the morrow; — vainly I had sought to borrow From my books surcease of sorrow — sorrow for the lost Lenore — For the rare and radiant maiden whom the angels name Lenore — Nameless here for evermore. And the silken sad uncertain rustling of each purple curtain Thrilled me — filled me with fantastic terrors never felt before; So that now, to still the beating of my heart, I stood repeating, Tis some visitor entreating entrance at my chamber door — Some late visitor entreating entrance at my chamber door; — This it is, and nothing more." Presently my soul grew stronger; hesitating then no longer, Sir," said I, "or Madam, truly your forgiveness I implore; But the fact is I was napping, and so gently you came rapping, And so faintly you came tapping, tapping at my chamber door, That I scarce was sure I heard you"— here I opened wide the door; — Darkness there, and nothing more. Deep into that darkness peering, long I stood there wondering, fearing, Doubting, dreaming dreams no mortals ever dared to dream before; But the silence was unbroken, and the stillness gave no token, And the only word there spoken was the whispered word, "Lenore?" This I whispered, and an echo murmured back the word, "Lenore!" — Merely this, and nothing more. Back into the chamber turning, all my soul within me burning, Soon again I heard a tapping somewhat louder than before. Surely," said I, "surely that is something at my window lattice: Let me see, then, what thereat is, and this mystery explore — Let my heart be still a moment and this mystery explore; — 'Tis the wind and nothing more." Open here I flung the shutter, when, with many a flirt and flutter, In there stepped a stately raven of the saintly days of yore; Not the least obeisance made he; not a minute stopped or stayed he; But, with mien of lord or lady, perched above my chamber door — Perched upon a bust of Pallas just above my chamber door — Perched, and sat, and nothing more. Then this ebony bird beguiling my sad fancy into smiling, By the grave and stern decorum of the countenance it wore. Though thy crest be shorn and shaven, thou," I said, "art sure no craven, Ghastly grim and ancient raven wandering from the Nightly shore — Tell me what thy lordly name is on the Night's Plutonian shore!" Quoth the Raven, "Nevermore." Much I marveled this ungainly fowl to hear discourse so plainly, Though its answer little meaning— little relevancy bore; For we cannot help agreeing that no living human being Ever yet was blest with seeing bird above his chamber door — Bird or beast upon the sculptured bust above his chamber door, With such name as "Nevermore.
Edgar Allan Poe (The Raven)
I've read your summary." "And?" "It's not incompetent." Be still, my heart, so I don't faint from such faint phrase. "Did you expect it to be written in crayon?
Ilona Andrews (Magic Bleeds (Kate Daniels, #4))
Holding this soft, small living creature in my lap this way, though, and seeing how it slept with complete trust in me, I felt a warm rush in my chest. I put my hand on the cat's chest and felt his heart beating. The pulse was faint and fast, but his heart, like mine, was ticking off the time allotted to his small body with all the restless earnestness of my own.
Haruki Murakami (The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle)
faint heart never won fair lady
Meg Cabot (Princess in Love (The Princess Diaries, #3))
This hill though high I covent ascend; The difficulty will not me offend; For I perceive the way of life lies here. Come, pluck up, heart; let's neither faint nor fear.
John Bunyan (The Pilgrim's Progress)
The last days are not for the faint of heart or the spiritually out of shape.
Sheri Dew (God Wants a Powerful People (talk on Compact Disc))
being a teenager these days is not for the faint of heart.
Melody Carlson
As she was putting her boots on Daisy threw a barb over her shoulder that struck Connie right in the middle of her chest. ‘Grow up, Connie! This place is not for faint-hearted romantics!
Sheena Billett (From Manchester to the Arctic: Nurse Sanders embarks on an adventure that will change her life)
The letter had been crumpled up and tossed onto the grate. It had burned all around the edges, so the names at the top and bottom had gone up in smoke. But there was enough of the bold black scrawl to reveal that it had indeed been a love letter. And as Hannah read the singed and half-destroyed parchment, she was forced to turn away to hide the trembling of her hand. —should warn you that this letter will not be eloquent. However, it will be sincere, especially in light of the fact that you will never read it. I have felt these words like a weight in my chest, until I find myself amazed that a heart can go on beating under such a burden. I love you. I love you desperately, violently, tenderly, completely. I want you in ways that I know you would find shocking. My love, you don't belong with a man like me. In the past I've done things you wouldn't approve of, and I've done them ten times over. I have led a life of immoderate sin. As it turns out, I'm just as immoderate in love. Worse, in fact. I want to kiss every soft place of you, make you blush and faint, pleasure you until you weep, and dry every tear with my lips. If you only knew how I crave the taste of you. I want to take you in my hands and mouth and feast on you. I want to drink wine and honey from you. I want you under me. On your back. I'm sorry. You deserve more respect than that. But I can't stop thinking of it. Your arms and legs around me. Your mouth, open for my kisses. I need too much of you. A lifetime of nights spent between your thighs wouldn't be enough. I want to talk with you forever. I remember every word you've ever said to me. If only I could visit you as a foreigner goes into a new country, learn the language of you, wander past all borders into every private and secret place, I would stay forever. I would become a citizen of you. You would say it's too soon to feel this way. You would ask how I could be so certain. But some things can't be measured by time. Ask me an hour from now. Ask me a month from now. A year, ten years, a lifetime. The way I love you will outlast every calendar, clock, and every toll of every bell that will ever be cast. If only you— And there it stopped.
Lisa Kleypas (A Wallflower Christmas (Wallflowers, #4.5))
This hill, though high, I covet to ascend; The difficulty will not me offend. For I perceive the way to life lies here. Come, pluck up, heart; let's neither faint nor fear. Better, though difficult, the right way to go, Than wrong, though easy, where the end is woe.
John Bunyan (The Pilgrim's Progress)
Mr Leopold Bloom ate with relish the inner organs of beasts and fowls. He liked thick giblet soup, nutty gizzards, a stuffed roast heart, liverslices fried with crustcrumbs, fried hencods' roes. Most of all he liked grilled mutton kidneys which gave to his palate a fine tang of faintly scented urine.
James Joyce (Ulysses)
But I was in search of love in those days, and I went full of curiosity and the faint, unrecognized apprehension that here, at last, I should find that low door in the wall, which others, I knew, had found before me, which opened on an enclosed and enchanted garden, which was somewhere, not overlooked by any window, in the heart of that grey city.
Evelyn Waugh (Brideshead Revisited)
Now they are a circle, and they vibrate together, they pulsate together. Their hearts are no longer separate, their beats are no longer separate, they have become a melody, a harmony. It is the greatest music possible, all other musics are just faint things compared to it, shadow things compared to it.
Osho
He let out a sigh. With my head there against his chest, I could faintly make out the sound of his heart beating through his suit coat. It seemed to be rushing. His hand, gentle as ever, reached to cup my cheek. As I looked into his eyes, I felt that unnameable feeling that was growing between us. With his eyes, Maxon asked for something we'd both agree to wait on. I was glad he didn't want to wait anymore. I gave him a tiny nod, and he bridged the small gap between us, kissing me with unimaginable tenderness.
Kiera Cass (The Selection (The Selection, #1))
Do I dazzle you?" I voiced my curiosity impulsively, and then the words were out, and it was too late to recall them. But before I had time to too deeply regret speaking the words aloud, she answered "Frequently." And her cheeks took on a faint pink glow. I dazzled her. My silent heart swelled with a hope more intense than I could ever remember having felt before.
Stephenie Meyer (Midnight Sun [2008 Draft])
There was a soft chuckle beside me, and my heart stopped. "So this is Oberon's famous half-blood," Ash mused as I whirled around. His eyes, cold and inhuman, glimmered with amusement. Up close, he was even more beautiful, with high cheekbones and dark tousled hair falling into his eyes. My traitor hands itched, longing to run my fingers through those bangs. Horrified, I clenched them in my lap, trying to concentrate on what Ash was saying. "And to think," the prince continued, smiling, "I lost you that day in the forest and didn't even know what I was chasing." I shrank back, eyeing Oberon and Queen Mab. They were deep in conversation and did not notice me. I didn't want to interrupt them simply because a prince of the Unseelie Court was talking to me. Besides, I was a faery princess now. Even if I didn't quite believe it, Ash certainly did. I took a deep breath, raised my chin, and looked him straight in the eye. "I warn you," I said, pleased that my voice didn't tremble, "that if you try anything, my father will remove your head and stick it to a plaque on his wall." He shrugged one lean shoulder. "There are worse things." At my horrified look, he offered a faint, self-derogatory smile. "Don't worry, princess, I won't break the rules of Elysium. I have no intention of facing Mab's wrath should I embarrass her. That's not why I'm here." "Then what do you want?" He bowed. "A dance." "What!" I stared at him in disbelief. "You tried to kill me!" "Technically, I was trying to kill Puck. You just happened to be there. But yes, if I'd had the shot, I would have taken it." "Then why the hell would you think I'd dance with you?" "That was then." He regarded me blandly. "This is now. And it's tradition in Elysium that a son and daughter of opposite territories dance with each other, to demonstrate the goodwill between the courts." "Well, it's a stupid tradition." I crossed my arms and glared. "And you can forget it. I am not going anywhere with you." He raised an eyebrow. "Would you insult my monarch, Queen Mab, by refusing? She would take it very personally, and blame Oberon for the offense. And Mab can hold a grudge for a very, very long time." Oh, damn. I was stuck.
Julie Kagawa (The Iron King (The Iron Fey, #1))
I reach out to touch one of the walls, imagining that I can feel his life and warmth through it, and I look around again, up toward the rooftops and then all the way to the night sky where a few faint stars can be seen, and there I think I really can see him. I can feel his presence here in every stone he has touched, every person he has lifted up, every street and alley and city that he has changed in the few years of his life, because he is the Republic, he is our light, and I love you, I love you, until the day we meet again I will hold you in my heart and protect you there, grieving what we never had, cherishing what we did. I wish you were here. I love you, always.
Marie Lu (Champion (Legend, #3))
...I believe that you are sincere and good at heart. If you do not attain happiness, always remember that you are on the right road, and try not to leave it. Above all, avoid falsehood, every kind of falsehood, especially falseness to yourself. Watch over your own deceitfulness and look into it every hour, every minute. Avoid being scornful, both to others and to yourself. What seems to you bad within you will grow purer from the very fact of your observing it in yourself. Avoid fear, too, though fear is only the consequence of every sort of falsehood. Never be frightened at your own faint-heartedness in attaining love.
Fyodor Dostoevsky (The Brothers Karamazov)
The Bible is not a book for the faint of heart -- it is a book full of all the greed and glory and violence and tenderness and sex and betrayal that benefits mankind. It is not the collection of pretty little anecdotes mouthed by pious little church mice -- it does not so much nibble at our shoe leather as it cuts to the heart and splits the marrow from the bone. It does not give us answers fitted to our small-minded questions, but truth that goes beyond what we even know to ask.
Rich Mullins
I like pouring your tea, lifting the heavy pot, and tipping it up, so the fragrant liquid streams in your china cup. Or when you’re away, or at work, I like to think of your cupped hands as you sip, as you sip, of the faint half-smile of your lips. I like the questions – sugar? – milk? – and the answers I don’t know by heart, yet, for I see your soul in your eyes, and I forget. Jasmine, Gunpowder, Assam, Earl Grey, Ceylon, I love tea’s names. Which tea would you like? I say but it’s any tea for you, please, any time of day, as the women harvest the slopes for the sweetest leaves, on Mount Wu-Yi, and I am your lover, smitten, straining your tea. - Tea
Carol Ann Duffy (Rapture)
Of course not. No one is chosen. Not ever. Not in the real world. You chose to climb out of your window and ride on a leopard. You chose to get a witch’s Spoon back, and to make friends with a wyvern. You chose to trade your shadow for a child’s life. You chose not to let the Marquess hurt your friend--you chose to smash her cages! You chose to face your own Death, not to balk at a great sea to cross and no ship to cross it in. And twice now you have chosen not to go home when you might have, if only you abandoned your friends. You are not the chosen one, September. Fairyland did not choose you--you chose yourself. You could have had a lovely holiday in Fairyland and never met the Marquess, never worried yourself with local politics, had a romp with a few brownies and gone home with enough memories for a lifetime’s worth of novels. But you didn’t. You chose. You chose it all. Just like you chose your path on the beach: to lose your heart is not a path for the faint and fainting.
Catherynne M. Valente (The Girl Who Circumnavigated Fairyland in a Ship of Her Own Making (Fairyland, #1))
You are in love with intelligence, until it frightens you. For your ideas are terrifying and your hearts are faint. Your acts of pity and cruelty are absurd, committed with no calm, as if they were irresistible. Finally, you fear blood more and more. Blood and time.
Paul Valéry (Selected Writings)
Thou art the Lord who slept upon the pillow, Thou art the Lord who soothed the furious sea, What matters beating wind and tossing billow If only we are in the boat with Thee? Hold us quiet through the age-long minute While Thou art silent and the wind is shrill : Can the boat sink while Thou, dear Lord, are in it; Can the heart faint that waiteth on Thy will?
Amy Carmichael
There were days when you peered into yourself, into the secret places of your heart, and what you saw there made you faint with horror. And then, next day, you didn't know what to make of it,you couldn't interpret the horror you had glimpsed the day before. Yes, you know what evil costs.
Jean-Paul Sartre (No Exit)
[The waves] move across a faint horizon, the rush of love and the surge of grief, the respite of peace and then fear again, the heart that beats and then lies still, the rise and fall and rise and fall of all of it, the incoming and the outgoing, the infinite procession of life. And the ocean wraps the earth, a reminder. The mysteries come forward in waves.
Susan Casey (The Wave: In Pursuit of the Rogues, Freaks, and Giants of the Ocean)
There was no God in his heart, he knew; his ideas were still in riot; there was ever the pain of memory; the regret for his lost youth-yet the waters of disillusion had left a deposit on his soul, responsibility and a love of life, the faint stirring of old ambitions and unrealized dreams...... And he could not tell why the struggle was worth while, why he had determined to use to the utmost himself and his heritage from the personalities he had passed... He stretched out his arms to the crystalline, radiant sky. I know myself," he cried, "but that is all.
F. Scott Fitzgerald (This Side of Paradise)
When a person is going through a hard time, his mind wants to give up. Satan knows that if he can defeat us in our mind, he can defeat us in our experience. That’s why it is so important that we not lose heart, grow weary and faint.
Joyce Meyer (Battlefield of the Mind: Winning the Battle in Your Mind)
Oh, good, it worked,” Archer said, his ghostly face relieved. Unlike Elodie, his voice came in loud and clear, and so familiar that my heart broke all over again. I stood frozen, my back against the door. Even though he was faint, I could see him smirk. “Um…Mercer? Haven’t seen you in nearly a month. I was expecting something like, ‘Oh, Cross, love of my heart, fire of my loins, how I’ve longed—’” “You’re dead,” I blurted out, pressing a hand against my stomach. “You’re a ghost, and you think—” All the humor disappeared from his face, and he held up both hands. “Whoa, whoa, whoa. Not dead. Promise.” My heart was still hammering. “Then what the heck are you?” Archer almost looked sheepish as he reached inside his shirt and pulled out some kind of amulet on a thin silver chain. “It’s a speaking stone. Lets you appear to people kind of like a hologram. You know. ‘Help me, Sophie-Wan Kenobi, you’re my only hope.’” “Did you steal it from the cellar at Hecate, too?” Archer had collected all sorts of magical knickknacks back when we had cellar duty at Hex Hall. “No,” he said, offended. “I found it at a…store. For magical stuff. Okay, yes, I stole it from the cellar.
Rachel Hawkins (Spell Bound (Hex Hall, #3))
Man is a strange being. He always has a feeling somewhere in his heart that whatever the danger he will pull through. It's just like when on a rainy day you imagine the faint rays of the sun shining on a distant hill.
Shūsaku Endō (Silence)
We fell silent again. The thing we had shared was nothing more than a fragment of time that had died longe ago.Even so, a faint glimmer of that warm memory still claimed a part of my heart. And when death claim me, no doubt I would walk along by that faint light in the brief instant before being flung once again into the abyss of nothingness
Haruki Murakami (Pinball, 1973 (The Rat, #2))
the whole purport of literature...is the notation of the heart. Style is but the faintly contemptible vessel in which the bitter liquid is recommended to the world.
Thornton Wilder (The Bridge of San Luis Rey)
Memories, so sweet and bitter.. they had both nourished and devoured him for so many years. Until a time came when they began to fade, turning faint and blurred, only an ache to be quickly pushed away because it went to your heart. For what was the use of remembering all you had lost?
Cornelia Funke (Inkspell (Inkworld, #2))
The quiet between them had gone on for far too long now to pretend it was anything other than what it was. There were no more words; all that was left were two faintly beating hearts.
Jennifer E. Smith (The Geography of You and Me)
Poetry And it was at that age... Poetry arrived in search of me. I don’t know, I don’t know where it came from, from winter or a river. I don’t know how or when, no, they were not voices, they were not words, nor silence, but from a street I was summoned, from the branches of night, abruptly from the others, among violent fires or returning alone, there I was without a face and it touched me. I did not know what to say, my mouth had no way with names my eyes were blind, and something started in my soul, fever or forgotten wings, and I made my own way, deciphering that fire and I wrote the first faint line, faint, without substance, pure nonsense, pure wisdom of someone who knows nothing, and suddenly I saw the heavens unfastened and open, planets, palpitating planations, shadow perforated, riddled with arrows, fire and flowers, the winding night, the universe. And I, infinitesimal being, drunk with the great starry void, likeness, image of mystery, I felt myself a pure part of the abyss, I wheeled with the stars, my heart broke free on the open sky.
Pablo Neruda (Selected Poems)
To this point, he could not really have said that he loved William. Feel the terror of responsibility for him, yes. Carry thought of him like a gem in his pocket, certainly, reaching now and then to touch it, marveling. But now he felt the perfection of the tiny bones of William’s spine through his clothes, smooth as marbles under his fingers, smelled the scent of him, rich with the incense of innocence and the faint tang of shit and clean linen. And thought his heart would break with love.
Diana Gabaldon (The Scottish Prisoner (Lord John Grey, #3))
It is not a dream, it is a simple feat of scientific electrical engineering, only expensive — blind, faint-hearted, doubting world! [...] Humanity is not yet sufficiently advanced to be willingly led by the discoverer's keen searching sense. But who knows? Perhaps it is better in this present world of ours that a revolutionary idea or invention instead of being helped and patted, be hampered and ill-treated in its adolescence — by want of means, by selfish interest, pedantry, stupidity and ignorance; that it be attacked and stifled; that it pass through bitter trials and tribulations, through the strife of commercial existence. So do we get our light. So all that was great in the past was ridiculed, condemned, combatted, suppressed — only to emerge all the more powerfully, all the more triumphantly from the struggle." – Nikola Tesla (at the end of his dream for Wardenclyffe)
Nikola Tesla (Problem of Increasing Human Energy)
Fearlessness is better than a faint-heart for any man who puts his nose out of doors. The length of my life and the day of my death were fated long ago.
Kevin Crossley-Holland
When his grandchildren had been little, they had asked if they could hide inside the clock. Now he wanted to gather them and open himself up and hide them among his ribs and faintly ticking heart.
Paul Harding (Tinkers)
If I can stop one Heart from breaking I shall not live in vain If I can ease one Life the Aching Or cool one Pain Or help one fainting Robin Unto his Nest again I shall not live in Vain.
Emily Dickinson
Lovers are not at their best when it matters. Mouths dry up, palms sweat, conversation flags and all the time the heart is threatening to fly from the body once and for all. Lovers have been known to have heart attacks. Lovers drink too much from nervousness and cannot perform. They eat too little and faint during their fervently wished consummation. They do not stroke the favoured cat and their face-paint comes loose. This is not all. Whatever you have set store by, your dress, your dinner, your poetry, will go wrong.
Jeanette Winterson
Faint heart never won fair maiden
Miguel de Cervantes Saavedra
The World is full of fools and faint hearts; and yet every one has courage enough to bear the misfortunes, and wisdom enough to manage the Affairs of his neighbor.
Benjamin Franklin (Poor Richard's Almanack)
It doth not hurt", whispered a faint voice, "She will take you life and all you are and all you care'st for, and she will leave you with nothing but mist and fog. She'll take your joy. And one day you'll wake and your heart and soul will have gone. A husk you'll be, a wisp you'll be, and a thing no more than a dream on waking, or a memory of something forgotten.
Neil Gaiman (Coraline)
Oh, well, faint heart never won so much as a scrap of paper
Dorothy L. Sayers (Strong Poison (Lord Peter Wimsey, #6))
In a nervous and slender-leaved mimosa grove at the back of their villa we found a perch on the ruins of a low stone wall. She trembled and twitched as I kissed the corner of her parted lips and the hot lobe of her ear. A cluster of stars palely glowed above us between the silhouettes of long thin leaves; that vibrant sky seemed as naked as she was under her light frock. I saw her face in the sky, strangely distinct, as if it emitted a faint radiance of its own. Her legs, her lovely live legs, were not too close together, and when my hand located what it sought, a dreamy and eerie expression, half-pleasure, half-pain, came over those childish features. She sat a little higher than I, and whenever in her solitary ecstasy she was led to kiss me, her head would bend with a sleepy, soft, drooping movement that was almost woeful, and her bare knees caught and compressed my wrist, and slackened again; and her quivering mouth, distorted by the acridity of some mysterious potion, with a sibilant intake of breath came near to my face. She would try to relieve the pain of love by first roughly rubbing her dry lips against mine; then my darling would draw away with a nervous toss of her hair, and then again come darkly near and let me feed on her open mouth, while with a generosity that was ready to offer her everything, my heart, my throat, my entrails, I gave her to hold in her awkward fist the scepter of my passion.
Vladimir Nabokov (Lolita)
Most things I consider fun aren't for the faint of heart, and the way I like to "play it" isn't always conventional. Is that something you think you can handle?" Special Agent Logan Brandenburg
Taylor V. Donovan (Six Degrees of Agony (By Degrees, #3))
It's where we're nearest to our humanness. Useless knowledge for its own sake. Useful knowledge is good, too, but it's for the faint-hearted, an elaboration of the real thing, which is only to shine some light, it doesn't matter where on what, it's the light itself, against the darkness, it's what's left of God's purpose when you take away God.
Tom Stoppard (The Invention of Love)
and I looked and looked at her, and knew as clearly as I know I am to die, that I loved her more than anything I had ever seen or imagined on earth, or hoped for anywhere else. She was only the faint violet whiff and dead leaf echo of the nymphet I had rolled myself upon with such cries in the past; an echo on the brink of a russet ravine, with a far wood under a white sky, and brown leaves choking the brook, and one last cricket in the crisp weeds... but thank God it was not that echo alone that I worshipped. What I used to pamper among the tangled vines of my heart, mon grand pch radieux, had dwindled to its essence: sterile and selfish vice, all that I cancelled and cursed. You may jeer at me, and threaten to clear the court, but until I am gagged and halfthrottled, I will shout my poor truth. I insist the world know how much I loved my Lolita, this Lolita, pale and polluted, and big with another’s child, but still gray-eyed, still sooty-lashed, still auburn and almond, still Carmencita, still mine; Changeons de vie, ma Carmen, allons vivre quelque, part o nous ne serons jamais spars; Ohio? The wilds of Massachusetts? No matter, even if those eyes of hers would fade to myopic fish, and her nipples swell and crack, and her lovely young velvety delicate delta be tainted and torneven then I would go mad with tenderness at the mere sight of your dear wan face, at the mere sound of your raucous young voice, my Lolita.
Vladimir Nabokov (Lolita)
My short stories are like soft shadows I have set out in the world, faint footprints I have left. I remember exactly where I set down each and every one of them, and how I felt when I did. Short stories are like guideposts to my heart...
Haruki Murakami
Nah, I shook my head, things that come out of nowhere go back to nowhere, that’s all. We fell silent again. The thing we had shared was nothing more than a fragment of time that had died long ago. Even so, a faint glimmer of that warm memory still claimed a part of my heart. And when death claimed me, no doubt I would walk along by that faint light in the brief instant before being flung once again into the abyss of nothingness.
Haruki Murakami (Pinball, 1973 (The Rat, #2))
In spring it is the dawn that is most beautiful. As the light creeps over the hills, their outlines are dyed a faint red and wisps of purplish cloud trail over them. In summer the nights. Not only when the moon shines, but on dark nights too, as the fireflies flit to and fro, and even when it rains, how beautiful it is! In autumn, the evenings, when the glittering sun sinks close to the edge of the hills and the crows fly back to their nests in threes and fours and twos; more charming still is a file of wild geese, like specks in the distant sky. When the sun has set, one's heart is moved by the sound of the wind and the hum of the insects. In winter the early mornings. It is beautiful indeed when snow has fallen during the night, but splendid too when the ground is white with frost; or even when there is no snow or frost, but it is simply very cold and the attendants hurry from room to room stirring up the fires and bringing charcoal, how well this fits the season's mood! But as noon approaches and the cold wears off, no one bothers to keep the braziers alight, and soon nothing remains but piles of white ashes.
Sei Shōnagon
Some discouragement, some faintness of heart at the new real future which replaces the imaginary, is not unusual, and we do not expect people to be deeply moved by what is not unusual. That element of tragedy which lies in the very fact of frequency has not yet wrought itself into the coarse emotion of mankind, and perhaps our frames could hardly bear much of it. If we had a keen vision and feeling of all ordinary human life, it would be like hearing the grass grow and the squirrel's heart beat, and we should die of that roar which lies on the other side of silence.
George Eliot
If thou art worn and hard beset, With sorrows, that thou wouldst forget; If thou wouldst read a lesson, that will keep Thy heart from fainting and thy soul from sleep, Go to the woods and hills! No tears Dim the sweet look that Nature wears.
Henry Wadsworth Longfellow
This is not a story for the faint of heart; this is the story of one woman's very real struggle through a world against her, the people who hurt her, her real life demons and the people who showed her that every gray sky, no matter how dark, has a sun waiting to break through.
S.L. Jennings (Fear of Falling (Fearless, #1))
Because, dear, trouble comes to us all in this life: we set our hearts on things which it isn't God's will for us to have, and then we go sorrowing; the people we love are taken from us, and we can joy in nothing because they are not with us; sickness comes, and we faint under the burden of our feeble bodies; we go astray and do wrong, and bring ourselves into trouble with our fellow men. There is no man or woman born into this world to whom some of these trials do not fall, and so I feel that some of them must happen to you; and I desire for you, that while you are young you should seek for the strength from your Heavenly Father, that you may have a support which will not fail you in the evil day.
George Eliot (Adam Bede)
I think about how there are certain people who come into your life, and leave a mark. I don’t mean the usual faint impression: he was cute, she was nice, they made me laugh, I wish I’d known her better, I remember the time she threw up in class. And I don’t just mean that they change you. A lot of people can change you – the first kid who called you a name, the first teacher who said you were smart., the first person who crowned you best friend. It’s the change you remember, the firsts and what they meant, not really the people. Ethan changed me, for instance, but the longer we are apart the more he sort of recedes into the distance as a real person and in his place is a cardboard cutout that says first boyfriend. I’m talking about the ones who, for whatever reason are a part of you as your own soul. Their place in your heart is tender; a bruise of longing, a pulse of unfinished business. My mom was right about that. Just hearing their names pushes and pulls at you in a hundred ways, and when you try to define those hundred ways, describe them even to yourself, words are useless. If you had a lifetime to talk, there would still be things left unsaid.
Sara Zarr (Sweethearts)
Beyond the fence the forest stood up spectrally in the moonlight, and through the dim stir, through the faint sounds of that lamentable courtyard, the silence of the land went home to one's very heart - its mystery, its greatness, the amazing reality of its concealed life.
Joseph Conrad (Heart of Darkness)
What will happen when my heart stops beating?" Momo asked. When that moment comes," said the professor, "time will stop for you as well. Or rather, you will retrace your steps through time, through all the days and nights, myths and years of your life, until you go out through the great, round, silver gate you entered by." What will I find on the other side?" The home of the music you've sometimes faintly heard in the distance, but by then you'll be part of it. You yourself will be a note in its mighty harmonies.
Michael Ende
Death avoidance is not an individual failing; it’s a cultural one. Facing death is not for the faint-hearted. It is far too challenging to expect that each citizen will do so on his or her own. Death acceptance is the responsibility of all death professionals—funeral directors, cemetery managers, hospital workers. It is the responsibility of those who have been tasked with creating physical and emotional environments where safe, open interaction with death and dead bodies is possible.
Caitlin Doughty (From Here to Eternity: Traveling the World to Find the Good Death)
My "heart". Does that pitiful organ still represent anything? It lies motionless in my chest, pumping no blood, serving no purpose, and yet my feelings still seem to originate inside its cold walls. My muted sadness, my vague longing, my rare flickers of joy. They pool in the center of my chest and seep out of there, diluted and faint, but real.
Isaac Marion (Warm Bodies (Warm Bodies, #1))
We kissed again. It grew deeper; Alex wrapped his arms around me, drawing me close against him. His back was smooth and warm. I ran my hands over it as we kissed, loving the feel of his skin, and almost went faint as his lips moved briefly to my neck and then found my mouth again. In my entire life, nothing had ever felt as good as Alex kissing me like that. When we finally pulled apart, both our hearts were pounding. I cleared my throat, skimming my fingers along his forearm. "Alex, you, um...you know that I've never--" "I know," he broke in softly. He reached for my hand, linking his fingers through mine. "Willow, it's OK. We'll do whatever you want. I just want to be with you; I don't care.
L.A. Weatherly (Angel (Angel, #1))
Real fairy tales are not for the faint hearted. In them, children get eaten by witches and chased by wolves; women fall into comas and are tortured by evil relatives. Somehow, all that pain and suffering is worthwhile, though, when it leads to the ending: happily ever after. Suddenly it no longer matters if you got a B- on your midterm in French or if you're the only girl in the school who doesn't have a date for the spring formal. Happily ever after trumps everything. But what if ever after could change?
Samantha van Leer (Between the Lines (Between the Lines, #1))
My husband claims I have an unhealthy obsession with secondhand bookshops. That I spend too much time daydreaming altogether. But either you intrinsically understand the attraction of searching for hidden treasure amongst rows of dusty shelves or you don't; it's a passion, bordering on a spiritual illness, which cannot be explained to the unaffected. True, they're not for the faint of heart. Wild and chaotic, capricious and frustrating, there are certain physical laws that govern secondhand bookstores and like gravity, they're pretty much nonnegotiable. Paperback editions of D. H. Lawrence must constitute no less than 55 percent of all stock in any shop. Natural law also dictates that the remaining 45 percent consist of at least two shelves worth of literary criticism on Paradise Lost and there should always be an entire room in the basement devoted to military history which, by sheer coincidence, will be haunted by a man in his seventies. (Personal studies prove it's the same man. No matter how quickly you move from one bookshop to the next, he's always there. He's forgotten something about the war that no book can contain, but like a figure in Greek mythology, is doomed to spend his days wandering from basement room to basement room, searching through memoirs of the best/worst days of his life.) Modern booksellers can't really compare with these eccentric charms. They keep regular hours, have central heating, and are staffed by freshly scrubbed young people in black T-shirts. They're devoid of both basement rooms and fallen Greek heroes in smelly tweeds. You'll find no dogs or cats curled up next to ancient space heathers like familiars nor the intoxicating smell of mold and mildew that could emanate equally from the unevenly stacked volumes or from the owner himself. People visit Waterstone's and leave. But secondhand bookshops have pilgrims. The words out of print are a call to arms for those who seek a Holy Grail made of paper and ink.
Kathleen Tessaro (Elegance)
I almost forgot,” said Red. His voice sounded very strange, as if from a long, long distance. He reached into his pocket. “I have something for you.” He put it into my hand. A round, shiny, perfect apple, green as new grass with a faint blush of rosy pink. And now his eyes had changed so that I saw what lay there, hidden deep, so deep only the bravest or most foolhardy would seek to find it. He has always understood me better, without words. So I laid my hand on my heart, held it there for a moment, and then moved it over and touched my palm against his breast. My heart. Your heart.
Juliet Marillier (Daughter of the Forest (Sevenwaters, #1))
Carmen sat up when she heard a familiar trill from her computer. It was an instant message from Bee. Beezy3: Packing. Do you have my purple sock with the heart on the ankle? Carmabelle: No. Like I'd wear your socks. Carmen looked from her computer screen down to her feet. To her dismay, her socks were two faintly different shades of purple. She rotated her foot to get a view of her anklebone. Carmabelle: Ahem. Might possibly have sock.
Ann Brashares (The Second Summer of the Sisterhood (Sisterhood, #2))
Naoko stayed frozen in place, like a small nocturnal animal that has been lured out by the moonlight. The direction of the glow exaggerated the silhouette of her lips. Seeming utterly fragile and vulnerable, the silhouette pulsed almost imperceptibly with the beating of her heart or the motions of her inner heart, as if she were whispering soundless words to the darkness. I swallowed in hopes of easing my thirst, but in the stillness of the night, the sound I made was huge. As if this were a signal to her, Naoko stood and glided toward the head of the bed, gown rustling faintly. She knelt on the floor by my pillow, eyes fixed on mine. I stared back at her, but her eyes told me nothing. Strangely transparent, they seemed like windows to a world beyond, but however long I peered into their depths, there was nothing I could see. Our faces were no more than ten inches apart, but she was light-years away from me.
Haruki Murakami (Norwegian Wood)
Women can go mad with insomnia. The sleep-deprived roam houses that have lost their familiarity. With tea mugs in hand, we wander rooms, looking on shelves for something we will recognize: a book title, a photograph, the teak-carved bird -- a souvenir from what place? A memory almost rises when our eyes rest on a painting's grey sweep of cloud, or the curve of a wooden leg in a corner. Fingertips faintly recall the raised pattern on a chair cushion, but we wonder how these things have come to be here, in this stranger's home. Lost women drift in places where time has collapsed. We look into our thoughts and hearts for what has been forgotten, for what has gone missing. What did we once care about? Whom did we love? We are emptied. We are remote. Like night lilies, we open in the dark, breathe in the shadowy world. Our soliloquies are heard by no one.
Cathy Ostlere (Lost: A Memoir)
Lovers are not at their best when it matters. Mouths dry up, palms sweat, conversation flags and all the time the heart is threatening to fly from the body once and for all. Lovers have been known to have heart attacks. Lovers drink too much from nervousness and cannot perform. They eat too little and faint during their fervently wished consummation. They do not stroke the favoured cat and their face-paint comes loose. This is not all. Whatever you have set store by, your dress, your dinner, your poetry, will go wrong. How is it that one day life is orderly and you are content, a little cynical perhaps, but on the whole just so, and then without warning you find the solid floor is a trapdoor and you are now in another place whose geography is uncertain and whose customs are strange? Travellers at least have a choice. Those who set sail know that things will not be the same as at home. Explorers are prepared. But for us, who travel along the blood vessels, who come to the cities of the interior by chance, there is no preparation. We who were fluent find life is a foreign language. Somewhere between the swamp and the mountains. Somewhere between fear and sex. Somewhere between God and the Devil passion is and the way there is sudden and the way back is worse.
Jeanette Winterson (The Passion)
If you run now, without a moment's rest, you will still be in time to warn King Lune." Shasta's heart fainted at these words for he felt he had no strength left. And he writhed inside at what seemed the cruelty and unfairness of the demand. He had not yet learned that if you do one good deed your reward usually is to be set to do another and harder and better one. But all he said out loud was: "Where is the King?" The Hermit turned and pointed with his staff. "Look," he said. "There is another gate, right opposite to the one you entered by. Open it and go straight ahead: always straight ahead, over level or steep, over smooth or rough, over dry or wet. I know by my art that you will find King Lune straight ahead. But run, run: always run.
C.S. Lewis
The library is not, as some would have it, a place for the retiring of disposition or faint of heart. It is not an ivory tower or a quiet room in a sanitarium facing away from the afternoon sun. It is, rather, a command center, a power base. A board room, a war room. An Oval Office for all who preside over their own destinies. One does not retreat from the world here; one prepares to join it at an advantage.
Eric Burns (The Joy of Books)
If questioning would make us wise no eyes would ever gaze in eyes; if all of our tale were told in speech, no mouth would wonder each to each. Were spirits free from mortal mesh and love not bound to hearts of flesh no aching breast would earn to meet and find their ecstasy complete. For who is there that lives and knows the secret powers by which he grows? Were knowledge all, what were our need to thrill and faint and sweetly bleed? Then not seek, sweet, the “If” and “Why” I love you until I die. For I must love because I live And life in me is what you give.
Bill Archer
Ash didn't say anything, but I heard his faint sigh, as if he'd been holding his breath, and he drew me close, wrapping his around me. I lay my head on his chest and closed my eyes, shoving thoughts of Puck and my dad and the false king to the back of my mind. I would deal with them tomorrow. Right now, I just wanted to sleep, to sink into oblivion and forget everything for a little while. Ash was still quiet, thoughtful. His glamour aura glimmered once, then flickered out of sight again. But all I had to do was listen to his heart, thudding in his chest, to know what he was feeling.
Julie Kagawa
I heard the bathroom door close and I kept my eyes screwed shut, but my heart skyrocketed into uncharted territories. I folded my arms around me and held my breath. There was the slightest movement behind me. Skin brushed against mine. A fine shiver rolled up my spine. An infinite spark transferred between us, something that couldn’t be replicated or forced. How could I’ve forgotten that when connected with Seth? My heart turned over heavily. Aiden brushed the mass of thick hair over one shoulder and his lips met the space between my neck and shoulder. His hands slid down the slick skin of my arms, cupping over my elbows and then to my wrists. Gently, slowly, he eased my arms to my sides. I bit down on my lip and my legs started trembling. But he was there. Like always, holding me up when I couldn’t stand on and letting me go when he knew I needed him to. He was more than just a shelter. AIden was my other half, my equal. And he needed no weird Apollyon connection. Aiden waited, still as a statue, patient as ever, until my muscles unlocked, one by one. Then his hands dropped to my waist and he turned me toward him. A heartbeat passed and he placed his fingers on my chin, tipping my head back. I opened my eyes, blinking the wetness off my lashes, and the air hitched in my throat. Faint, purplish bruises shadowed his jaw. There was a cut over the bridge of his nose. No doubt injuries I had given him.
Jennifer L. Armentrout (Apollyon (Covenant, #4))
Failure to recognize one's own absolute significance is equivalent to a denial of human worth; this is a basic error and the origin of all unbelief. If one is so faint-hearted that he is powerless even to believe in himself, how can he believe in anything else? The basic falsehood and evil of egoism lie not in this absolute self-consciousness and self-evaluation of the subject, but in the fact that, ascribing to himself in all justice an absolute significance, he unjustly refuses to others this same significance. Recognizing himself as a centre of life (which as a matter of fact he is), he relegates others to the circumference of his own being and leaves them only an external and relative value.
Vladimir Sergeyevich Solovyov (The Meaning of Love)
So he found her. Most people would have said she was relaxed. But then, Roarke thought, most people didn’t really know and certainly didn’t understand Eve Dallas. He was more intimate with her, closer to her mind and heart than he had ever been with another. Yet there were still pockets of her he had yet to plumb. She was, always, a fascinating learning experience. She was naked, dipped to her chin in steamy water and perfumed bubbles. Her face was flushed from the heat, her eyes closed, but she wasn’t relaxed. He could see the tension in the hand that was fisted on the wide ledge of the tub, in the faint frown between her eyes. No, Eve was thinking, he mused.
J.D. Robb (Glory in Death (In Death, #2))
Ephemera Your eyes that once were never weary of mine Are bowed in sorrow under pendulous lids, Because our love is waning." And then she: "Although our love is waning, let us stand By the lone border of the lake once more, Together in that hour of gentleness When the poor tired child, Passion, falls asleep: How far away the stars seem, and how far Is our first kiss, and ah, how old my heart!" Pensive they paced along the faded leaves, While slowly he whose hand held hers replied: "Passion has often worn our wandering hearts." The woods were round them, and the yellow leaves Fell like faint meteors in the gloom, and once A rabbit old and lame limped down the path; Autumn was over him: and now they stood On the lone border of the lake once more: Turning, he saw that she had thrust dead leaves Gathered in silence, dewy as her eyes, In bosom and hair. "Ah, do not mourn," he said, "That we are tired, for other loves await us; Hate on and love through unrepining hours. Before us lies eternity; our souls Are love, and a continual farewell.
W.B. Yeats (The Collected Poems of W.B. Yeats)
I had always known in my heart that the experience would never leave me, that it was now woven into my very fibers, an inextricable part of my past, but I had hoped never to have to recollect it, consciously, and in full, ever again. Like an old wound, it gave off a faint twinge now and again, but less and less often, less and less painfully, as the years went on and my happiness, sanity and equilibrium were assured. Of late, it had been like the outermost ripple on a pool, merely the faint memory of a memory.
Susan Hill (The Woman in Black)
I mourned,” Roma said just as softly. “I mourned for months, years outside the gates of the cemetery. Yet I don’t regret choosing you. No matter how cruel you think yourself, your heart beats for your people. That’s why you shot him. That’s why you took the chance. Not because you are merciless. Because you have hope.” Juliette looked up. If Roma turned, even the slightest, they would be nose to nose. “I regret that I was ever put in the position to choose,” Roma continued. His words were faint, whispered into the world while the streets roared with sirens, the building beside them teemed with chaos, and policemen along every street corner screamed for order. But Juliette heard him perfectly. “I hate that the blood feud forced my hand, but I can’t—I did what I had to do and you may think me monstrous for it. The feud keeps taking and hurting and killing and still I couldn’t stop loving you even when I thought I hated you.
Chloe Gong (These Violent Delights (These Violent Delights, #1))
As I went over to say good-by I saw that the expression of bewilderment had come back into Gatsby's face, as though a faint doubt had occurred to him as to the quality of his present happiness. Almost five years! There must have been moments even that afternoon when Daisy tumbled short of his dreams-not through her own fault, but because of the colossal vitality of his illusion. It had gone beyond her, beyond everything. He had thrown himself into it with a creative passion, adding to it all the time, decking it out with every bright feather that drifted his way. No amount of fire or freshness can challenge what a man will store up in his ghostly heart
F. Scott Fitzgerald (The Great Gatsby)
Call the world, if you please, "the Vale of Soul Making". Then you will find out the use of the world.... There may be intelligences or sparks of the divinity in millions -- but they are not Souls till they acquire identities, till each one is personally itself. Intelligences are atoms of perception -- they know and they see and they are pure, in short they are God. How then are Souls to be made? How then are these sparks which are God to have identity given them -- so as ever to possess a bliss peculiar to each one's individual existence. How, but in the medium of a world like this? This point I sincerely wish to consider, because I think it a grander system of salvation than the Christian religion -- or rather it is a system of Spirit Creation... I can scarcely express what I but dimly perceive -- and yet I think I perceive it -- that you may judge the more clearly I will put it in the most homely form possible. I will call the world a school instituted for the purpose of teaching little children to read. I will call the human heart the hornbook used in that school. And I will call the child able to read, the soul made from that school and its hornbook. Do you not see how necessary a world of pains and troubles is to school an intelligence and make it a soul? A place where the heart must feel and suffer in a thousand diverse ways.... As various as the lives of men are -- so various become their souls, and thus does God make individual beings, souls, identical souls of the sparks of his own essence. This appears to me a faint sketch of a system of salvation which does not affront our reason and humanity...
John Keats
Neither the fanatics nor the faint-hearted are needed. And our duty as a Party is not to our Party alone, but to the nation, and, indeed, to all mankind. Our duty is not merely the preservation of political power but the preservation of peace and freedom. So let us not be petty when our cause is so great. Let us not quarrel amongst ourselves when our Nation's future is at stake. Let us stand together with renewed confidence in our cause -- united in our heritage of the past and our hopes for the future -- and determined that this land we love shall lead all mankind into new frontiers of peace and abundance.
John F. Kennedy
A little thing, like children putting flowers in my hair, can fill up the widening cracks in my self-assurance like soothing lanolin. I was sitting out on the steps today, uneasy with fear and discontent. Peter, (the little boy-across-the-street) with the pointed pale face, the grave blue eyes and the slow fragile smile came bringing his adorable sister Libby of the flaxen braids and the firm, lyrically-formed child-body. They stood shyly for a little, and then Peter picked a white petunia and put it in my hair. Thus began an enchanting game, where I sat very still, while Libby ran to and fro gathering petunias, and Peter stood by my side, arranging the blossoms. I closed my eyes to feel more keenly the lovely delicate-child-hands, gently tucking flower after flower into my curls. "And now a white one," the lisp was soft and tender. Pink, crimson, scarlet, white ... the faint pungent odor of the petunias was hushed and sweet. And all my hurts were smoothed away. Something about the frank, guileless blue eyes, the beautiful young bodies, the brief scent of the dying flowers smote me like the clean quick cut of a knife. And the blood of love welled up in my heart with a slow pain.
Sylvia Plath (The Unabridged Journals of Sylvia Plath)
The hoopoe said: 'Your heart's congealed like ice; When will you free yourself from cowardice? Since you have such a short time to live here, What difference does it make? What should you fear? The world is filth and sin, and homeless men Must enter it and homeless leave again. They die, as worms, in squalid pain; if we Must perish in this quest, that, certainly, Is better than a life of filth and grief. If this great search is vain, if my belief Is groundless, it is right that I should die. So many errors throng the world - then why Should we not risk this quest? To suffer blame For love is better than a life of shame. No one has reached this goal, so why appeal To those whose blindness claims it is unreal? I'd rather die deceived by dreams than give My heart to home and trade and never live. We've been and heard so much - what have we learned? Not for one moment has the self been spurned; Fools gather round and hinder our release. When will their stale, insistent whining cease? We have no freedom to achieve our goal Until from Self and fools we free the soul. To be admitted past the veil you must Be dead to all the crowd considers just. Once past the veil you understand the Way From which the crowd's glib courtiers blindly stray. If you have any will, leave women's stories, And even if this search for hidden glories Proves blasphemy at last, be sure our quest Is not mere talk but an exacting test. The fruit of love's great tree is poverty; Whoever knows this knows humility. When love has pitched his tent in someone's breast, That man despairs of life and knows no rest. Love's pain will murder him and blandly ask A surgeon's fee for managing the task - The water that he drinks brings pain, his bread Is turned to blood immediately shed; Though he is weak, faint, feebler than an ant, Love forces him to be her combatant; He cannot take one mouthful unaware That he is floundering in a sea of care.
Attar of Nishapur
Know this: I, Mercurius, have here set down a full, true and infallible account of the Great Work. But I give you fair warning that unless you seek the true philosophical gold and not the gold of the vulgar, unless you heart is fixed with unbending intent on the true Stone of the Philosophers, unless you are steadfast in your quest, abiding by God’s laws in all faith and humility and eschewing all vanity, conceit, falsehood, intemperance, pride, lust and faint-heartedness, read no farther lest I prove fatal to you. For I am the watery venomous serpent who lies buried at the earth’s centre; I am the fiery dragon who flies through the air. I am the one thing necessary for the whole Opus. I am the spirit of metals, the fire which does not burn, the water which does not wet the hands. If you find the way to slay me you will find the philosophical mercury of the wise, even the White Stone beloved of the Philosophers. If you find the way to raise me up again, you will find the philosophical sulphur, that is, the Red Stone and Elixir of Life. Obey me and I will be your servant; free me and I will be your friend. Enslave me and I am a dangerous enemy; command me and I will make you mad; give me life and you will die.
Patrick Harpur (Mercurius: The Marriage of Heaven and Earth)
Gold winked at his wrist as he pressed his choice for two coffees on the AutoChef built into the side panel. "Cream?" "Black." "A woman after my own heart." Moments later, he opened the protective door and offered her a china cup in a delicate saucer. "We have more of a selection on the plane," he said, then settled back with his coffee. "I bet." The steam rising from her cup smelled like heaven. Eve took a tentative sip -- and nearly moaned. It was real. No simulation made from vegetable concentrate so usual since the depletion of the rain forests in the late twentieth. This was the real thing, ground from rich Columbian beans, singing with caffeine. She sipped again, and could have wept. "Problem?" He enjoyed her reaction immensely, the flutter of the lashes, the faint flush, the darkening of the eyes -- a similar response, he noted, to a woman purring under a man's hands. "Do you know how long it's been since I had real coffee?" He smiled. "No." "Neither do I." Unashamed, she closed her eyes as she lifted the cup again. "You'll have to excuse me, this is a private moment. We'll talk on the plane.
J.D. Robb (Naked in Death (In Death, #1))
The Listeners 'Is there anybody there?' said the Traveller, Knocking on the moonlit door; And his horse in the silence champed the grasses Of the forest's ferny floor. And a bird flew up out of the turret, Above the Traveller's head: And he smote upon the door again a second time; 'Is there anybody there?' he said. But no one descended to the Traveller; No head from the leaf-fringed sill Leaned over and looked into his grey eyes, Where he stood perplexed and still. But only a host of phantom listeners That dwelt in the lone house then Stood listening in the quiet of the moonlight To that voice from the world of men: Stood thronging the faint moonbeams on the dark stair, That goes down to the empty hall, Hearkening in an air stirred and shaken By the lonely Traveller's call. And he felt in his heart their strangeness, Their stillness answering his cry, While his horse moved, cropping the dark turf, 'Neath the starred and leafy sky; For he suddenly smote on the door, even Louder, and lifted his head:-- 'Tell them I came, and no one answered, That I kept my word,' he said. Never the least stir made the listeners, Though every word he spake Fell echoing through the shadowiness of the still house From the one man left awake: Ay, they heard his foot upon the stirrup, And the sound of iron on stone, And how the silence surged softly backward, When the plunging hoofs were gone.
Walter de la Mare
My story starts at sea, a perilous voyage to an unknown land. A shipwreck. The wild waters roar and heave. The brave vessel is dashed all to pieces. And all the helpless souls within her drowned. All save one. A lady. Whose soul is greater than the ocean, and her spirit stronger than the sea's embrace. Not for her a watery end, but a new life beginning on a stranger shore. It will be a love story. For she will be my heroine for all time. And her name will be Viola." "She was incomprehensible, for, in her, soul and spirit were one - the beauty of her body was the essence of her soul. She was that unity sought for by philosophers through many centuries. In this outdoor waiting room of winds and stars she had been sitting for a hundred years, at peace in the contemplation of herself." "He knew that there was passion there, but there was no shadow of it in her eyes or on her mouth; there was a faint spray of champagne on her breath. She clung nearer desperately and once more he kissed her and was chilled by the innocence of her kiss, by the glance that at the moment of contact looked beyond him out into the darkness of the night, the darkness of the world." "Her heart sank into her shoes as she realized at last how much she wanted him. No matter what his past was, no matter what he had done. Which was not to say that she would ever let him know, but only that he moved her chemically more than anyone she had ever met, that all other men seemed pale beside him." "I used to build dreams about you." "Then she kissed him until the sky seemed to fade out and all her smiles and tears to vanish in an ecstasy of eternal seconds.
F. Scott Fitzgerald
There was a scrape and crunch of shoes, then a small, smooth hand slid toward her. But it was not Chaol or Sam or Nehemia who lay across from her, watching her with those sad turquoise eyes. Her cheek against the moss, the young princess she had been—Aelin Galathynius—reached a hand for her. “Get up,” she said softly. Celaena shook her head. Aelin strained for her, bridging that rift in the foundation of the world. “Get up.” A promise—a promise for a better life, a better world. The Valg princes paused. She had wasted her life, wasted Marion’s sacrifice. Those slaves had been butchered because she had failed—because she had not been there in time. “Get up,” someone said beyond the young princess. Sam. Sam, standing just beyond where she could see, smiling faintly. “Get up,” said another voice—a woman’s. Nehemia. “Get up.” Two voices together—her mother and father, faces grave but eyes bright. Her uncle was beside them, the crown of Terrasen on his silver hair. “Get up,” he told her gently. One by one, like shadows emerging from the mist, they appeared. The faces of the people she had loved with her heart of wildfire. And then there was Lady Marion, smiling beside her husband. “Get up,” she whispered, her voice full of that hope for the world, and for the daughter she would never seen again.
Sarah J. Maas (Heir of Fire (Throne of Glass, #3))
A Faint Music by Robert Hass Maybe you need to write a poem about grace. When everything broken is broken, and everything dead is dead, and the hero has looked into the mirror with complete contempt, and the heroine has studied her face and its defects remorselessly, and the pain they thought might, as a token of their earnestness, release them from themselves has lost its novelty and not released them, and they have begun to think, kindly and distantly, watching the others go about their days— likes and dislikes, reasons, habits, fears— that self-love is the one weedy stalk of every human blossoming, and understood, therefore, why they had been, all their lives, in such a fury to defend it, and that no one— except some almost inconceivable saint in his pool of poverty and silence—can escape this violent, automatic life’s companion ever, maybe then, ordinary light, faint music under things, a hovering like grace appears. As in the story a friend told once about the time he tried to kill himself. His girl had left him. Bees in the heart, then scorpions, maggots, and then ash. He climbed onto the jumping girder of the bridge, the bay side, a blue, lucid afternoon. And in the salt air he thought about the word “seafood,” that there was something faintly ridiculous about it. No one said “landfood.” He thought it was degrading to the rainbow perch he’d reeled in gleaming from the cliffs, the black rockbass, scales like polished carbon, in beds of kelp along the coast—and he realized that the reason for the word was crabs, or mussels, clams. Otherwise the restaurants could just put “fish” up on their signs, and when he woke—he’d slept for hours, curled up on the girder like a child—the sun was going down and he felt a little better, and afraid. He put on the jacket he’d used for a pillow, climbed over the railing carefully, and drove home to an empty house. There was a pair of her lemon yellow panties hanging on a doorknob. He studied them. Much-washed. A faint russet in the crotch that made him sick with rage and grief. He knew more or less where she was. A flat somewhere on Russian Hill. They’d have just finished making love. She’d have tears in her eyes and touch his jawbone gratefully. “God,” she’d say, “you are so good for me.” Winking lights, a foggy view downhill toward the harbor and the bay. “You’re sad,” he’d say. “Yes.” “Thinking about Nick?” “Yes,” she’d say and cry. “I tried so hard,” sobbing now, “I really tried so hard.” And then he’d hold her for a while— Guatemalan weavings from his fieldwork on the wall— and then they’d fuck again, and she would cry some more, and go to sleep. And he, he would play that scene once only, once and a half, and tell himself that he was going to carry it for a very long time and that there was nothing he could do but carry it. He went out onto the porch, and listened to the forest in the summer dark, madrone bark cracking and curling as the cold came up. It’s not the story though, not the friend leaning toward you, saying “And then I realized—,” which is the part of stories one never quite believes. I had the idea that the world’s so full of pain it must sometimes make a kind of singing. And that the sequence helps, as much as order helps— First an ego, and then pain, and then the singing
Robert Hass (Sun under Wood)
How strange, extraordinary, and joyful it was to her to think that her son - the little son, whose tiny limbs had faintly stirred within her twenty years ago, for whose sake she had so often quarreled with the count, who would spoil him, the little son, who had first learnt to say grusha, and then had learnt to say baba - that that son was now in a foreign land, in strange surroundings, a manly warrior, alone without help or guidance, doing there his proper manly work. All the world-wide experience of ages, proving that children do imperceptibly from the cradle grow up into men, did not exist for the countess. The growth of her son had been for her at every strage of his growth just as extraordinary as though millions of millions of men had not grown up in the same way. Just as, twenty years before, she could not believe that the little creature that was lying somewhere under her heart, would one day cry and learn to talk, now she could not believe that the same little creature could be that strong, brave man, that paragon of sons and of men that, judging by this letter, he was now.
Leo Tolstoy (War and Peace)
Blow on, ye death fraught whirlwinds! blow, Around the rocks, and rifted caves; Ye demons of the gulf below! I hear you, in the troubled waves. High on this cliff, which darkness shrouds In night's impenetrable clouds, My solitary watch I keep, And listen, while the turbid deep Groans to the raging tempests, as they roll Their desolating force, to thunder at the pole. Eternal world of waters, hail! Within thy caves my Lover lies; And day and night alike shall fail Ere slumber lock my streaming eyes. Along this wild untrodden coast, Heap'd by the gelid' hand of frost; Thro' this unbounded waste of seas, Where never sigh'd the vernal breeze; Mine was the choice, in this terrific form, To brave the icy surge, to shiver in the storm. Yes! I am chang'd - My heart, my soul, Retain no more their former glow. Hence, ere the black'ning tempests roll, I watch the bark, in murmurs low, (While darker low'rs the thick'ning' gloom) To lure the sailor to his doom; Soft from some pile of frozen snow I pour the syren-song of woe; Like the sad mariner's expiring cry, As, faint and worn with toil, he lays him down to die. Then, while the dark and angry deep Hangs his huge billows high in air ; And the wild wind with awful sweep, Howls in each fitful swell - beware! Firm on the rent and crashing mast, I lend new fury to the blast; I mark each hardy cheek grow pale, And the proud sons of courage fail; Till the torn vessel drinks the surging waves, Yawns the disparted main, and opes its shelving graves. When Vengeance bears along the wave The spell, which heav'n and earth appals; Alone, by night, in darksome cave, On me the gifted wizard calls. Above the ocean's boiling flood Thro' vapour glares the moon in blood: Low sounds along the waters die, And shrieks of anguish fill the' sky; Convulsive powers the solid rocks divide, While, o'er the heaving surge, the embodied spirits glide. Thrice welcome to my weary sight, Avenging ministers of Wrath! Ye heard, amid the realms of night, The spell that wakes the sleep of death. Where Hecla's flames the snows dissolve, Or storms, the polar skies involve; Where, o'er the tempest-beaten wreck, The raging winds and billows break; On the sad earth, and in the stormy sea, All, all shall shudd'ring own your potent agency. To aid your toils, to scatter death, Swift, as the sheeted lightning's force, When the keen north-wind's freezing breath Spreads desolation in its course, My soul within this icy sea, Fulfils her fearful destiny. Thro' Time's long ages I shall wait To lead the victims to their fate; With callous heart, to hidden rocks decoy, And lure, in seraph-strains, unpitying, to destroy.
Anne Bannerman (Poems by Anne Bannerman.)
Nekhbet shrieked in alarm. I turned to see what was going on. Immediately, I wished I could burn my eyes out of my head. Liz made a gagging sound. "Lord, no! That's wrong!" "Agh!" Emma shouted, in perfect baboon-speak. "Make him stop!" Bes had indeed put on his ugly outfit.He climbed onto the roof of the limo and stood there, legs planted, arms akimbo, like Superman- except with only the underwear. For those faint of heart I wont go into detail, but Bes, all of a meter tall, was showing off his disgusting physique- his potbelly, hairy limbs, awful feet, gross flabby bits- and wearing only a blue Speedo. Imagine the worst looking person you've ever seen on a public beach- the person for whom swimwear should be illegal. Bes looked worse than that. I wasn't sure what to say except: "Put some clothes on!" Bes laughed= the sort of guffaw that says Ha-ha! I'm amazing! "Not until they leave," he said. "Or I'll be forced to scare them back to the Duat." "This is not your affair, dwarf god!" Nekhbet snarled, averting her eyes from his horribleness. "Go away!" "These children are under my protection," Bes insisted "I don't know you," I said. "I never met you before today." "Nonsense. You expressly asked for my protection." "I didn't ask for the Speedo Patrol!" Bes leaped off the limo and landed in front of my circle placing himself between Babi and me. The dwarf was even more horrible from behind. His back was so hairy it looked like a mink coat. And on the back of his Speedo was printed DWARF PRIDE.
Rick Riordan
Debarred from public worship, David was heartsick. Ease he did not seek, honour he did not covet, but the enjoyment of communion with God was an urgent need of his soul; he viewed it not merely as the sweetest of all luxuries, but as an absolute necessity, like water to a stag. Like the parched traveler in the wilderness, whose skin bottle is empty, and who finds the wells dry, he must drink or die – he must have his God or faint. His soul, his very self, his deepest life, was insatiable for a sense of the divine presence. . . . Give him his God and he is as content as the poor deer which at length slakes its thirst and is perfectly happy; but deny him his Lord, and his heart heaves, his bosom palpitates, his whole frame is convulsed, like one who gasps for breath, or pants with long running. Dear friend, dost thou know what this is, by personally having felt the same? It is a sweet bitterness. The next best thing to living in the light of the Lord’s love is to be unhappy till we have it, and to pant hourly after it – hourly, did I say? Thirst is a perpetual appetite, and not to be forgotten, and even thus continually is the heart’s longing after God. When it is as natural for us to long for God as for an animal to thirst, it is well with our souls, however painful our feelings
Charles Haddon Spurgeon
Raw emotions and the need to hold him close overwhelmed me. Every part of ached for him-my mind, my soul and my body. Without hesitation, i closed the gap between us and pressed my lips eagerly to his. Noah's hands were everywhere, my hair, my face, my back, and for the love of all things holy, my breasts. My hands roamed his glorious body just as greedily. After drugging me with delicious kisses for not nearly long enough, his warm lips skimmed my throat and kissed down the center of my breasts, causing me to arch my back and lose my ever loving mind. Without meaning to, i moaned and whispered his name when his hands wandered to my thighs and set my world and blood on fire. Noah eased me back into the bed and my hair sprawled all around me. "I love how you smell," he whispered as he suckled my earlobe. "I love how beautiful you are." I reclaimed his lips and hooked a leg around his as we moved in rhythm with each other. In between frantic kisses, i whispered the words, "I love you". Because i did. Noah listened to me. He made me laugh and he made me feel special. He was strong and warm and caring and...everything. I loved him. I loved him more than i'd ever loved another person in my life. Every muscle in my body froze when Noah stopped kissing and stare down at me with wide eyes. He caressed my cheek twice over and tilted his head. "Make love to me, Echo. I've never made love." No way. Noah's experienced reputation walked down the hallway before he did. "But..." Noah cut me off with a kiss. "Yes, but never love. Just girls who didn't mean anything" You..." His tongue teased my bottom lip, thawing my body. "Are everything. I got tested over winter break and i'm clean and i've got protection." He reached to the side of the bed and magically produced a small orange square. I froze again. Sensing my hesitation, Noah kissed my lips slowly while stroking my cheek. "And since break?" I asked. "There's been no one," he whispered against my lips. "I met you soon after and i could never think of touching anyone else." I loved him and we were together. I entwined my fingers in his hair and pulled his head back to mine, but the second his hand touched the waist of my jeans, my heart shook and my hands snapped out to stop him. "Please. Wait. Noah..." Oh, God, i was actually going to say it. "I'm a virgin." Now Noah froze. "But you were with Luke." A faint smile grew on my lips. I was typically the tongue-tied one and found it amusing to see him confused for once. "That's why we broke up. I wasn't ready." He shifted his body off of mine and tuckled me close against his warmth. I laid my head on his chest and listened to the comforting sound of his beating heart. Noah ran his hand through my hair. "I'm glad you told me. This needs to be right for you and i'll wait, for as long as you need.
Katie McGarry (Pushing the Limits (Pushing the Limits, #1))
Some things you carry around inside you as though they were part of your blood and bones, and when that happens, there’s nothing you can do to forget …But I had never been much of a believer. If anything, I believed that things got worse before they got better. I believed good people suffered... people who have faith were so lucky; you didn’t want to ruin it for them. You didn’t want to plant doubt where there was none. You had to treat suck individuals tenderly and hope that some of whatever they were feeling rubs off on you Those who love you will love you forever, without questions or boundaries or the constraints of time. Daily life is real, unchanging as a well-built house. But houses burn; they catch fire in the middle of the night. The night is like any other night of disaster, with every fact filtered through a veil of disbelief. The rational world has spun so completely out of its orbit, there is no way to chart or expect what might happen next At that point, they were both convinced that love was a figment of other people’s imaginations, an illusion fashioned out of smoke and air that really didn’t exist Fear, like heat, rises; it drifts up to the ceiling and when it falls down it pours out in a hot and horrible rain True love, after all, could bind a man where he didn’t belong. It could wrap him in cords that were all but impossible to break Fear is contagious. It doubles within minutes; it grows in places where there’s never been any doubt before The past stays with a man, sticking to his heels like glue, invisible and heartbreaking and unavoidable, threaded to the future, just as surely as day is sewn to night He looked at girls and saw only sweet little fuckboxes, there for him to use, no hearts involved, no souls, and, most assuredly no responsibilities. Welcome to the real world. Herein is the place where no one can tell you whether or not you’ve done the right thing. I could tell people anything I wanted to, and whatever I told them, that would be the truth as far as they were concerned. Whoever I said I was, well then, that’s who id be The truths by which she has lived her life have evaporated, leaving her empty of everything except the faint blue static of her own skepticism. She has never been a person to question herself; now she questions everything Something’s, are true no matter how hard you might try to bloc them out, and a lie is always a lie, no matter how prettily told You were nothing more than a speck of dust, good-looking dust, but dust all the same Some people needed saving She doesn’t want to waste precious time with something as prosaic as sleep. Every second is a second that belongs to her; one she understands could well be her last Why wait for anything when the world is so cockeyed and dangerous? Why sit and stare into the mirror, too fearful of what may come to pass to make a move? At last she knows how it feels to take a chance when everything in the world is at stake, breathless and heedless and desperate for more She’ll be imagining everything that’s out in front of them, road and cloud and sky, all the elements of a future, the sort you have to put together by hand, slowly and carefully until the world is yours once more
Alice Hoffman (Blue Diary)
There was a muffled tap again, and I heard a familiar voice whisper faintly, “Kelsey, it’s me.” I unlocked the door and peeked out. Ren was standing there dressed in his white clothes, barefoot, with a triumphant grin on his face. I pulled him inside and hissed out thickly, “What are you doing here? It’s dangerous coming into town! You could have been seen, and they’d send hunters out after you!” He shrugged his shoulders and grinned. “I missed you.” My mouth quirked up in a half smile. “I missed you too.” He leaned a shoulder nonchalantly against the doorframe. “Does that mean you’ll let me stay here? I’ll sleep on the floor and leave before daylight. No one will see me. I promise.” I let out a deep breath. “Okay, but promise you’ll leave early. I don’t like you risking yourself like this.” “I promise.” He sat down on the bed, took my hand, and pulled me down to sit beside him. “I don’t like sleeping in the dark jungle by myself.” “I wouldn’t either.” He looked down at our entwined hands. “When I’m with you, I feel like a man again. When I’m out there all alone, I feel like a beast, an animal.” His eyes darted up to mine. I squeezed his hand. “I understand. It’s fine. Really.” He grinned. “You were hard to track, you know. Lucky for me you two decided to walk to dinner, so I could follow your scent right to your door.” Something on the nightstand caught his attention. Leaning around me, he reached over and picked up my open journal. I had drawn a new picture of a tiger-my tiger. My circus drawings were okay, but this latest one was more personal and full of life. Ren stared at it for a moment while a bright crimson flush colored my cheeks. He traced the tiger with his finger, and then whispered gently, "Someday, I'll give you a portrait of the real me." Setting the journal down carefully, he took both of my hands in his, turned to me with an intense expression, and said, "I don't want you to see only a tiger when you look at me. I want you to see me. The man." Reaching out, he almost touched my cheek but he stopped and withdrew his hand. "I've worn the tiger's face for far too many years. He's stolen my humanity." I nodded while he squeezed my hands and whispered quietly, "Kells, I don't want to be him anymore. I want to be me. I want to have a life." "I know," I said softly. I reached up to stroke his cheek. "Ren, I-" I froze in place as he pulled my hand slowly down to his lips and kissed my palm. My hand tingled. His blue eyes searched my face desperately, wanting, needing something from me. I wanted to say something to reassure him. I wanted to offer him comfort. I just couldn't frame the words. His supplication stirred me. I felt a deep bond with him, a strong connection. I wanted to help him, I wanted to be his friend, and I wanted...maybe something more. I tried to identify and categorize my reactions to him. What I felt for him seemed too complicated to define, but it soon became obvious to me that the strongest emotion I felt, the one that was stirring my heart, was...love.
Colleen Houck (Tiger's Curse (The Tiger Saga, #1))
My Last Duchess That’s my last Duchess painted on the wall, Looking as if she were alive. I call That piece a wonder, now: Fra Pandolf’s hands Worked busily a day, and there she stands. Will’t please you sit and look at her? I said “Fra Pandolf” by design, for never read Strangers like you that pictured countenance, The depth and passion of its earnest glance, But to myself they turned (since none puts by The curtain I have drawn for you, but I) And seemed as they would ask me, if they durst, How such a glance came there; so, not the first Are you to turn and ask thus. Sir, ’twas not Her husband’s presence only, called that spot Of joy into the Duchess’ cheek: perhaps Fra Pandolf chanced to say “Her mantle laps Over my lady’s wrist too much,” or “Paint Must never hope to reproduce the faint Half-flush that dies along her throat”: such stuff Was courtesy, she thought, and cause enough For calling up that spot of joy. She had A heart—how shall I say?—too soon made glad, Too easily impressed; she liked whate’er She looked on, and her looks went everywhere. Sir, ’twas all one! My favour at her breast, The dropping of the daylight in the West, The bough of cherries some officious fool Broke in the orchard for her, the white mule She rode with round the terrace—all and each Would draw from her alike the approving speech, Or blush, at least. She thanked men,—good! but thanked Somehow—I know not how—as if she ranked My gift of a nine-hundred-years-old name With anybody’s gift. Who’d stoop to blame This sort of trifling? Even had you skill In speech—(which I have not)—to make your will Quite clear to such an one, and say, “Just this Or that in you disgusts me; here you miss, Or there exceed the mark”—and if she let Herself be lessoned so, nor plainly set Her wits to yours, forsooth, and made excuse, —E’en then would be some stooping; and I choose Never to stoop. Oh sir, she smiled, no doubt, Whene’er I passed her; but who passed without Much the same smile? This grew; I gave commands; Then all smiles stopped together. There she stands As if alive. Will’t please you rise? We’ll meet The company below, then. I repeat, The Count your master’s known munificence Is ample warrant that no just pretence Of mine for dowry will be disallowed; Though his fair daughter’s self, as I avowed At starting, is my object. Nay, we’ll go Together down, sir. Notice Neptune, though, Taming a sea-horse, thought a rarity, Which Claus of Innsbruck cast in bronze for me!
Robert Browning (My Last Duchess and Other Poems (Dover Thrift Editions: Poetry))