Orchid Quotes

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

The sun doesn't just hang on one family's tree
Anchee Min (Empress Orchid (Empress Orchid, #1))
Hurry along, then,” I said, grabbing my orchid and securing it safely in my journal. “I want to sit by the window.” “Hmm.” “What now?” I asked, losing patience. “I usually sit by the window. You may have to sit in my lap.
Kerri Maniscalco (Stalking Jack the Ripper (Stalking Jack the Ripper, #1))
I hated roses. I hated them for being so trite, so clichéd, a default, all-purpose flower that said I love you, I'm sorry, and get well soon. Give me peonies and tulips, orchids or gardenia. Those were flowers with character.
Justina Chen (North of Beautiful)
Don't compare her to sunshine and roses when she's clearly orchids and moonlight.
Melody Lee (Moon Gypsy)
If he’d been any other man and i'd been any other girl, I’d have called the narrowing of his heavy-lidded dark eyes lust. But he was Barrons and I was Mac, and a blossoming of lust was about as likely as orchids blooming in Antarctica
Karen Marie Moning (Bloodfever (Fever, #2))
I had to cease to mourn what could never be and make the most of what was possible. And I would begin doing that by trying to mend the hurts of the past.
Cameron Dokey (The Wild Orchid: A Retelling of The Ballad of Mulan)
Flower petals in the breeze look like a butterfly flapping its wings. My love for you takes flight like a white orchid blushing pink.
Jarod Kintz (This Book is Not for Sale)
One wants to move through life with elegance and grace, blossoming infrequently but with exquisite taste, and perfect timing, like a rare bloom, a zebra orchid... One wants... But one so seldom gets what one wants, does one?
Tony Kushner (Angels in America)
Lilacs on a bush are better than orchids. And dandelions and devil grass are better! Why? Because they bend you over and turn you away from all the people in the town for a little while and sweat you and get you down where you remember you got a nose again. And when you’re all to yourself that way, you’re really proud of yourself for a little while; you get to thinking things through, alone. Gardening is the handiest excuse for being a philosopher. Nobody guesses, nobody accuses, nobody knows, but there you are, Plato in the peonies, Socrates force-growing his own hemlock. A man toting a sack of blood manure across his lawn is kin to Atlas letting the world spin easy on his shoulder.
Ray Bradbury (Dandelion Wine)
It is growing cold. Winter is putting footsteps in the meadow. What whiteness boasts that sun that comes into this wood! One would say milk-colored maidens are dancing on the petals of orchids. How coldly burns our sun! One would say its rays of light are shards of snow, one imagines the sun lives upon a snow crested peak on this day. One would say she is a woman who wears a gown of winter frost that blinds the eyes. Helplessness has weakened me. Wandering has wearied my legs.
Roman Payne
She thought of the orchids spreading across the plains below, choking the life out of other plants, out of the soil itself, selfish and unstoppable. Tally Youngblood was a weed. And, unlike the orchids, she wasn't even a pretty one.
Scott Westerfeld (Uglies (Uglies, #1))
I was left alone there in the company of the orchids, roses and violets, which, like people waiting beside you who do not know you, preserved a silence which their individuality as living things made all the more striking, and warmed themselves in the heat of a glowing coal fire...
Marcel Proust (Within a Budding Grove (In Search of Lost Time, #2))
And when two people understand each other in their inmost hearts, Their words are sweet and strong like the fragrance of orchids.
I Ching
Lord Illingworth told me this morning that there was an orchid there as beautiful as the seven deadly sins.
Oscar Wilde (A Woman of No Importance)
The world is so huge that people are always getting lost in it. There are too many ideas and things and people too many directions to go. I was starting to believe that the reason it matters to care passionately about something is that it whittles the world down to a more manageable size. It makes the world seem not huge and empty but full of possibility.
Susan Orlean (The Orchid Thief)
Like an expensive painting or a fragile orchid, I thrive only in extremely specific conditions.
John Green (The Anthropocene Reviewed: Essays on a Human-Centered Planet)
Maybe I should get my mom something," he said bitterly. "What says 'Thanks for throwing me out of the house and pretending I died'?" "Orchids?
Cassandra Clare (City of Heavenly Fire (The Mortal Instruments, #6))
It's an odd thing about love. When someone you love cries, your heart melts. But when someone you don't love cries, you look at them and think, Why are you telling 'me' this?
Jude Deveraux (Wild Orchids)
Nothing could be taken for granted. Women who loved you tried to cut your throat, while women who didn't even know your name scrubbed your back. Witches could sound like Katharine Hepburn and your best friend could try to strangle you. Smack in the middle of an orchid there might be a blob of jello and inside a Mickey Mouse doll, a fixed and radiant star.
Toni Morrison (Song of Solomon)
If you had really loved something, wouldn't a little bit of it always linger?
Susan Orlean (The Orchid Thief)
The splendor of a human heart that trusts it is loved unconditionally gives God more pleasure than Westminster Cathedral, the Sistine Chapel, Beethoven’s “Ninth Symphony”, Van Gogh’s “Sunflowers”, the sight of 10,000 butterflies in flight, or the scent of a million orchids in bloom. Trust is our gift back to God, and he finds it so enchanting that Jesus died for love of it.
Brennan Manning (Ruthless Trust: The Ragamuffin's Path to God)
I’ve grown quite weary of the spunky heroines, brave rape victims, soul-searching fashionistas that stock so many books. I particularly mourn the lack of female villains — good, potent female villains. Not ill-tempered women who scheme about landing good men and better shoes (as if we had nothing more interesting to war over), not chilly WASP mothers (emotionally distant isn’t necessarily evil), not soapy vixens (merely bitchy doesn’t qualify either). I’m talking violent, wicked women. Scary women. Don’t tell me you don’t know some. The point is, women have spent so many years girl-powering ourselves — to the point of almost parodic encouragement — we’ve left no room to acknowledge our dark side. Dark sides are important. They should be nurtured like nasty black orchids.
Gillian Flynn
I have not led an ordinary life, nor a life that would suit everyone. I took great risks, but because I did, I also earned great reward. I found the way to show my true face freely, without fear. Because of this, I found true love.
Cameron Dokey (The Wild Orchid: A Retelling of The Ballad of Mulan)
I have become an orchid washed in on the salt white beach. Memory, what can I make of it now that might please you- this life, already wasted and still strewn with miracles?
Mary Ruefle
His Majesty, may he live forever and prosper greatly... His Majesty, may sun finches warble sweet melodies in his ear... His Majesty, may orchids bloom in the wake of his passing... His Majesty, may minstrels compose epics at the sound of his glorious name... His Majesty, may his magnificent sword shatter the breasts of his enemies...
Rae Carson (The Girl of Fire and Thorns (Fire and Thorns, #1))
I suppose I do have one embarrassing passion- I want to know what it feels like to care about something passionately.
Susan Orlean (The Orchid Thief)
Have you ever noticed how much they look like orchids? lovely!
Robert A. Heinlein
All the men send you orchids because they're expensive and they know that you know they are. But I always kind of think they're cheap, don't you, just because they're expensive. Like telling someone how much you paid for something to show off.
Winifred Watson (Miss Pettigrew Lives for a Day)
She's alone, they kept telling themselves, and surely she danced in no one's arms, yet somehow that seemed to matter less and less. As the night went on, and clarinet and coyote call mingled beyond the lantern light, the magic of their own powder-blue jackets and orchids seemed to fade, and it came to them in small sensations that they were more alone than she was.
Jerry Spinelli (Stargirl (Stargirl, #1))
Sometimes I think I've figured out some order in the universe, but then I find myself in Florida
Susan Orlean (The Orchid Thief)
Scatter as a prayer escaping my lips... as orchids blooming in clouds.
Sanober Khan (A Thousand Flamingos)
my mother was taught the ch'an concept of happiness, which was to find satisfaction in small things. i was taught to appreciate the fresh air in the morning, the colour of leaves turning red in autumn and the water's smoothness when i soaked my hands in the basin.
Anchee Min
Private Parts The first love of my life never saw me naked - there was always a parent coming home in half an hour - always a little brother in the next room. Always too much body and not enough time for me to show it. Instead, I gave him my shoulder, my elbow, the bend of my knee - I lent him my corners, my edges, the parts of me I could afford to offer - the parts I had long since given up trying to hide. He never asked for more. He gave me back his eyelashes, the back of his neck, his palms - we held each piece we were given like it was a nectarine that could bruise if we weren’t careful. We collected them like we were trying to build an orchid. And the spaces that he never saw, the ones my parents half labeled “private parts” when I was still small enough to fit all of myself and my worries inside a bathtub - I made up for that by handing over all the private parts of me. There was no secret I didn’t tell him, there was no moment I didn’t share - and we didn’t grow up, we grew in, like ivy wrapping, moulding each other into perfect yings and yangs. We kissed with mouths open, breathing his exhale into my inhale - we could have survived underwater or outer space. Breathing only of the breathe we traded, we spelled love, g-i-v-e, I never wanted to hide my body from him - if I could have I would have given it all away with the rest of me - I did not know it was possible. To save some thing for myself. Some nights I wake up knowing he is anxious, he is across the world in another woman’s arms - the years have spread us like dandelion seeds - sanding down the edges of our jigsaw parts that used to only fit each other. He drinks from the pitcher on the night stand, checks the digital clock, it is 5am - he tosses in sheets and tries to settle, I wait for him to sleep. Before tucking myself into elbows and knees reach for things I have long since given up.
Sarah Kay
You're a quiet, beautiful woman in a loud, ugly place. An orchid among weeds. You define obvious.
Lynn Viehl (Stay the Night (Darkyn, #7))
All of us show many faces to the world. No one shows her true face all of the time. To do that would be dangerous, for what is seen can also be known.
Cameron Dokey (The Wild Orchid: A Retelling of The Ballad of Mulan)
You should see the way she smiles when I rattle off the names of the orchids in the greenhouse: oncidium, dendrobium, bulbophyllum, and epidendrum, tickling her face with each blossom. I wouldn't be surprised if 'Orchidaceae' was her first word.
Vanessa Diffenbaugh (The Language of Flowers)
I was happy not to be in his place. He could command my death, but not his. But then, what kind of power was his? He was a prisoner of himself.
Anchee Min (Empress Orchid (Empress Orchid, #1))
I call the Change of Life "Orchids" because menopause is such an ugly word. It's got men in it for goddsakes.
Lisa Jey Davis (Getting Over Your Ovaries: How to Make 'The Change of Life' Your Bitch)
Because you have been created by God as a unique person, his plan to grow you will not look the same as his plan to grow anyone else. What would grow an orchid would drown a cactus.
John Ortberg (The Me I Want to Be: Becoming God's Best Version of You)
Through this twilight universe Daisy began to move again with the season; suddenly she was again keeping half a dozen dates a day with half a dozen men, and drowsing asleep at dawn with the beads and chiffon of an evening dress tangled among dying orchids on the floor beside her bed.
F. Scott Fitzgerald (The Great Gatsby)
The house was burning, the yellow-red sky was like the sunset...Nothing would be left, the golden ferns and the silver ferns, the orchids, the ginger lilies and the roses...When they had finished, there would be nothing left but blackened walls and the mounting stone. That was always left. That could not be stolen or burned.
Jean Rhys (Wide Sargasso Sea)
How did you know?” “I…” Thomas swallowed hard, his attention fixed on the painting. “The truth?” “Please.” “You’ve got a dress with orchid blossoms embroidered on it. Ribbons in the deepest purple. You favor the color, but not nearly as much as I find myself favoring you.” He took a deep breath. “As to the stars? Those are what I prefer. More than medical practices and deductions. The universe is vast. A mathematical equation even I have no hope of solving. For there are no limits to the stars; their numbers are infinite. Which is precisely why I measure my love for you by them. An amount too boundless to count.
Kerri Maniscalco (Hunting Prince Dracula (Stalking Jack the Ripper #2))
No matter how decadent and corrupt my body becomes, I will, like a desert orchid that blooms once every hundred years, come to you bearing this frigidness toward life.
Bae Suah (Nowhere to Be Found)
Orchid hunting is a mortal occupation.
Susan Orlean (The Orchid Thief : A True Story of Beauty and Obsession)
Chairs and chaise longues have been gathered around the fire, young women draped over them like wilted orchids, smoking cigarettes and clinging to their drinks.
Stuart Turton (The Seven Deaths of Evelyn Hardcastle)
Look at these wildflowers.” Hannah sweeps her arm around. “They’re not fancy, they’re not prizewinning orchids or roses. But they don’t care. They’re just wildflowers, doing their thing, and they’re beautiful. Be like them, sweet pea. Just be you and be happy.
Misa Sugiura (This Time Will Be Different)
I think the real reason is that life has no meaning. I mean, no obvious meaning. You wake up, you go to work, you do stuff. I think everybody's always looking for something a little unusual that can preoccupy them and help pass the time.
Susan Orlean (The Orchid Thief)
I don't like hiking with convicts carrying machetes.
Susan Orlean (The Orchid Thief)
The second thing I thought was that I knew everything. Lettie Hempstock's ocean flowed inside me, and it filled the entire universe, from Egg to Rose. I knew that. I knew what Egg was - where the universe began, to the sound of the uncreated voices singing in the void-and I knew where the Rose was -the peculiar crinkling of space on space into dimensions that fold like origami and blossom like strange orchids, and which would mark the last good time before the eventual end of everything and the next Big Bang, which would be, I knew now, nothing of the kind.
Neil Gaiman (The Ocean at the End of the Lane)
Even when I write about this swan and that orchid, I write about you. Every word of every line is for you. I have drunk you yet you have consumed me. Seeping through every cell from crown to root, you took over heart, mind, and lungs so that every breath I expel leaves a trail of you in the air— the same air that I inhale. I no longer know myself separate from you. But how I long to be with the source!
Kamand Kojouri
Acting with discipline requires you to know your true nature and, having come to know it, to bring it under control.
Cameron Dokey (The Wild Orchid: A Retelling of The Ballad of Mulan)
In that hothouse atmosphere, criminal records bloomed like orchids all around us.
Jean-Dominique Bauby (The Diving Bell and the Butterfly)
You send me all these roses. Every time I think the last bouquet has arrived, finally, another turns up. I’m running out of vases. I didn’t know roses came in so many colors. You say they’re the perfect symbols of love because they have thorns and love is pain. I say life is pain, highness. Anyone who says differently is selling something. And you don’t get it. You say you love me, but you don’t speak my language. You don’t even realize I’m an orchid girl.
Erin Morgenstern
You must never call your enemy by a name you choose for him." “Instead you must call him by the name he calls himself. What he chooses will reflect his pride; it will reveal his desires. But what you choose to call him will reveal your fears, which should be kept to yourself, lest your enemy find the way to exploit them.
Cameron Dokey (The Wild Orchid: A Retelling of The Ballad of Mulan)
Yes, I’m a hermit. Mostly I brood,” Mad Rogan said. “Also I’m very good at wallowing in self-pity. I spend my days steeped in melancholy, looking out the window. Occasionally a single tear quietly rolls down my cheek.” Arabella and Lina snickered in unison. “Do you also brush a white orchid against your lips?” Arabella put in. “While sad music plays in the background?” Lina grinned. “Perhaps,” Mad Rogan said.
Ilona Andrews (Burn for Me (Hidden Legacy, #1))
I'm a pretty forgetful guy, but everything she says, I remember. I remember what colour her hair ribbon was when we met on the first day of fifth grade. I remember that she loves orchids because they look delicate but aren't, really. From a single postcard she sent me when traveling with her family two summers ago. I remember what my name looks like in her handwriting.
Adi Alsaid (Let's Get Lost (English Edition))
Many collectors died in process of searching for new species, and despite persistent reports that the men died from drowning, gunshot and knife wounds, snakebite, trampling by cattle, or blows in the head with blunt instruments, it is generally accepted that in each case the primary cause of death was orchid fever.
Eric Hansen (Orchid Fever: A Horticultural Tale of Love, Lust, and Lunacy)
Miriam - I'll give you any flowers you want!' Rhapsodising over the thousand scents of her body, I exclaimed: 'I'll grow orchids from your hands, roses from your breasts. You can have magnolias in your hair...!' 'And in my heart?' 'In your womb I'll set a fly-trap!
J.G. Ballard (The Unlimited Dream Company)
Love doesn't attack; it infiltrates.
Lauren Willig (The Orchid Affair (Pink Carnation, #8))
IT’S THE LESSON YOUNG GIRLS EVERYWHERE were taught their entire lives—don’t be seduced by the men you meet, protect your virtue—until, of course, their entire lives depended on seduction by the right man. It was an impossible situation, a trick of society as a whole: force women to live at the mercy of whichever man wants them but shame them for anything they might do to get a man to want them. Passivity was the ultimate virtue. Heaven forbid you turn into someone like Hyacinth Coldwater. Be patient, be silent, be beautiful and untouched as an orchid, and then and only then will your reward come: a bell jar to keep you safe.
Dana Schwartz (Anatomy: A Love Story (The Anatomy Duology, #1))
Amazing what the application of a knitting needle could do for one's manners.
Lauren Willig (The Orchid Affair (Pink Carnation, #8))
I would argue that it might be easier to endure loneliness than to endure the idea that you might disappear.
Susan Orlean (The Orchid Thief)
Every explorer I have met has been driven—not coincidentally but quintessentially—by curiosity, by a single-minded, insatiable, and even jubilant need to know.
Jacques-Yves Cousteau (The Human, the Orchid, and the Octopus: Exploring and Conserving Our Natural World)
Everyone wanted his relatives to be proud of him, didn't he?
Jude Deveraux (Wild Orchids)
I would need … daisy love, you know, pretty love, sweet love that nonetheless was ubiquitous in roadside ditches in the summertime, and instead I would get orchid love. Love that needed misting and replanting and pruning and fertilizing and died anyway.
Mary Ann Rivers (The Story Guy)
The earth is black in front of the cliff, and no orchids grow. Creepers crawl in the brown mud by the path. Where did the birds of yesterday fly? To what other mountain did the animals go? Leopards and pythons dislike this ruined spot; Cranes and snakes avoid the desolation. My criminal thoughts of those days past Brought on the disaster of today.
Wu Cheng'en (Monkey: The Journey to the West)
The only thing that will make it possible for you to marry is if you meet your bridegroom on your wedding day, so he doesn't have the chance to get to know you ahead of time.
Cameron Dokey (Once: Before Midnight / Golden / Wild Orchid)
the orchid hypothesis” by David Dobbs in a wonderful article in The Atlantic. This theory holds that many children are like dandelions, able to thrive in just about any environment. But others, including the high-reactive types that Kagan studied, are more like orchids: they wilt easily, but under the right conditions can grow strong and magnificent.
Susan Cain (Quiet: The Power of Introverts in a World That Can't Stop Talking)
When farmers lose their land, they lose their soul,
Anchee Min (The Last Empress (Empress Orchid, #2))
What self-respecting male wanted a job being photographed?
Jude Deveraux (Wild Orchids)
Because -' she looked up at Bill and gave him a smile that lit up her face, granting him a sudden flash of her true beauty - 'love never die, Mister Bill. It never die.
Lucinda Riley (The Orchid House)
All of us show many faces to the world. No one shows her true face all the time. To do that would be dangerous, for what is seen can also be known. And what is known can be outmaneuvered, outguessed. Lifted up, or hunted down.
Cameron Dokey (The Wild Orchid: A Retelling of The Ballad of Mulan)
She was never able to talk about her secret with anyone around her. She has never found the proper words to describe it to others.. and even when she thought she did, the ones she used were never understood . But how could she blame anyone around her for not understanding something that confused her and kept her perplexed even though she lived it ?
Sahar Ayachi (The Orchid)
Go ahead," Leandro tempted, "I dare you." "I'm a theif, my hands are fast." "I'm a murderer, so are mine.
Geoffrey Knight (Scott Sapphire and the Emerald Orchid)
When the Devil was a woman, When Lilith wound Her ebony hair in heavy braids, And framed Her pale features all 'round With Botticelli's tangled thoughts, When she, smiling softly, Ringed all her slim fingers In golden bands with brilliant stones, When she leafed through Villiers And loved Huysmans, When she fathomed Maeterlinck's silence And bathed her Soul In Gabriel d'Annunzio's colors, She even laughed And as she laughed, The little princess of serpents sprang Out of her mouth. Then the most beautiful of she-devils Sought after the serpent, She seized the Queen of Serpents With her ringed finger, So that she wound and hissed Hissed, hissed And spit venom. In a heavy copper vase; Damp earth, Black damp earth She scattered upon it. Lightly her great hands caressed This heavy copper vase All around, Her pale lips lightly sang Her ancient curse. Like a children's rhyme her curses chimed, Soft and languid Languid as the kisses, That the damp earth drank From her mouth, But life arose in the vase, And tempted by her languid kisses, And tempted by those sweet tones, From the black earth slowly there crept, Orchids - When the most beloved Adorns her pale features before the mirror All 'round with Botticelli's adders, There creep sideways from the copper vase, Orchids- Devil's blossoms which the ancient earth, Wed by Lilith's curse To serpent's venom, has borne to the light Orchids- The Devil's blossoms- "The Diary Of An Orange Tree
Hanns Heinz Ewers (Nachtmahr: Strange Tales)
[Jürgen Habermas' obituary to friend and philosopher, Richard Rorty] One small autobiographical piece by Rorty bears the title 'Wild Orchids and Trotsky.' In it, Rorty describes how as a youth he ambled around the blooming hillside in north-west New Jersey, and breathed in the stunning odour of the orchids. Around the same time he discovered a fascinating book at the home of his leftist parents, defending Leon Trotsky against Stalin. This was the origin of the vision that the young Rorty took with him to college: philosophy is there to reconcile the celestial beauty of orchids with Trotsky's dream of justice on earth. Nothing is sacred to Rorty the ironist. Asked at the end of his life about the 'holy', the strict atheist answered with words reminiscent of the young Hegel: 'My sense of the holy is bound up with the hope that some day my remote descendants will live in a global civilization in which love is pretty much the only law.
Jürgen Habermas
For Daisy was young and her artificial world was redolent of orchids and pleasant, cheerful snobbery and orchestras which set the rhythm of the year, summing up the sadness and suggestiveness of life in new tunes. All night the saxophones wailed the hopeless comment o the 'Beale Street Blues' while a hundred pairs of golden and silver slippers shuffled the shiny dust. At the grey tea hour there were always rooms that throbbed incessantly with this low, sweet fever, while fresh faces drifted here and there like rose petals blown by the sad horns around the floor.
F. Scott Fitzgerald (The Great Gatsby)
God created an awesome world. God intentionally loaded the world with amazing things to leave you astounded. The carefully air-conditioned termite mound in Africa, the tart crunchiness of an apple, the explosion of thunder, the beauty of an orchid, the interdependent systems of the human body, the inexhaustible pounding of the ocean waves, and thousands of other created sights, sounds, touches, and tastes—God designed all to be awesome. And he intended you to be daily amazed.
Paul David Tripp (Awe: Why It Matters for Everything We Think, Say, and Do)
Everything has to do with everything else—you know that by now. So begin at the beginning, and it will lead to the end.
Toby Neal (Blood Orchids (Lei Crime, #1))
Be what nobody else can ever be...yourself.
Samantha Christy (Purple Orchids (The Mitchell Sisters, #1))
Human beings had polluted the seawater and mechanically destroyed the nearby coast; all life had paid this price. Often, in airports, on sidewalks, at restaurants, children and adults alike stop me to ask about barracuda and sharks; killer whales; the deadly sorcery of the Bermuda Triangle; the Loch Ness Monster. When I saw Le Veyron, I believed that the sea’s most monstrous force doesn’t live in Loch Ness. It lives in us.
Jacques-Yves Cousteau (The Human, the Orchid, and the Octopus: Exploring and Conserving Our Natural World)
The old orchid hunter lay back on his pillow, his body limp... 'You'll curse the insects,' he said at least, 'and you'll curse the natives... The sun will burn you by day and the cold will shrivel you by night. You'll be racked by fever and tormented by a hundred discomforts, but you'll go on. For when a man falls in love with orchids, he'll do anything to possess the one he wants. It's like chasing a green-eyed woman or taking cocaine... it's a sort of madness...
Susan Orlean (The Orchid Thief)
Then think of this as an adventure." I kissed hi cheek. "So which flower should I be?" He curled me close to his chest, nuzzling his face into my hair. "Mmmm, can't you be all of them? My own bouquet of beauty? Like daisies opening their friendly petals." He brushed his fingertips over my eyelids. "Or marigolds that burn like the summer sun." He rubbed his hands over my back. "Or orchids-rare and exotic." He traced a finger across my collarbone down to rest lightly on the locket I wore all the time. "Roses for passion." He kissed me.
Lisa Mangum (The Hourglass Door (Hourglass Door, #1))
Dear sisters, many of you are endlessly compassionate and patient with the weaknesses of others. Please remember also to be compassionate and patient with yourself. In the meantime, be thankful for all the small successes in your home, your family relationships, your education and livelihood, your Church participation and personal improvement. Like the forget-me-nots, these successes may seem tiny to you and they may go unnoticed by others, but God notices them and they are not small to Him. If you consider success to be only the most perfect rose or dazzling orchid, you may miss some of life’s sweetest experiences.
Dieter F. Uchtdorf
In the weeks since I had made the decision to leave my father's house, I had grown up. And I had learned that not every battle can be fought by firing an arrow from a bow. But I would have to face whatever new challenges came my way as bravely as I had faced the Huns. I could not wallow in self-pity, thinking about what might have been. I had to do my duty. It was the only way to stay true to myself.
Cameron Dokey (The Wild Orchid: A Retelling of The Ballad of Mulan)
It is a much wiser policy to plant acre after acre of orchids and lead one's life in solitude encompassed by their sheltering stems, than to surround oneself with the hoi polloi and so court the same pointless misanthropic disgust as befell Timon of Athens. Society is forever holding forth about fairness and justice. If it really believes these to be of such importance, it might do well to kill off a few dozen petty criminals per day, and use their carcasses to fertilize and give life to countless fields of flowers.
Natsume Sōseki (The Three-Cornered World)
I passed so many vacant acres and looked past them to so many more vacant acres and looked ahead and behind at the empty road and up at the empty sky; the sheer bigness of the world made me feel lonely to the bone. The world is so huge that people are always getting lost in it. There are too many ideas and things and people, too many directions to go. I was starting to believe that the reason it matters to care passionately about something is that it whittles the world down to a more manageable size. It makes the world seem not huge and empty but full of possibility. If I had been an orchid hunter I wouldn't have seen this space as sad-making and vacant - I think I would have seen it as acres of opportunity where the things I loved were waiting to be found.
Susan Orlean (The Orchid Thief)
I never thought very many people in the world were very much like John Laroche, but I realized more and more that he was only an extreme, not an aberration - that most people in some way or another do strive for something exceptional, something to pursue, even at their peril, rather than abide an ordinary life.
Susan Orlean (The Orchid Thief)
Her whispering lips brushed his ear. She was praying. Soft begging words to Ganesha and the Buddha, to Kali-Mary Mercy and the Christian God...she was praying to anything at all, begging the Fates to let her walk from the shadow of death. Pleas spilled from her lips, a desperate trickle. She was broken, soon to die, but still the words slipped out in a steady whisper. Tum Karuna ke saagar Tum palankarta hail Mary full of grace Ajahn Chan Bodhisattva, release me from suffering... He drew away. Her fingers slipped from his cheek like orchid petals falling.
Paolo Bacigalupi (Ship Breaker (Ship Breaker, #1))
Lilacs on a bush are better than orchids. And dandelions and devil grass are better! Why? Because they bend you over and turn you away from all the people and the town for a little while and sweat you and get you down where you remember you got a nose again. And when you're all to yourself that way, you're really yourself for a little while; you get to thinking things through, alone. Gardening is the handiest excuse for being a philosopher. Nobody guesses, nobody accuses, nobody knows, but there you are, Plato in the peonies, Socrates force-growing his own hemlock. A man toting a sack of blood manure across his lawn is kin to Atlas letting the world spin easy on his shoulder.
Ray Bradbury (Dandelion Wine)
It's not really about collecting the thing itself," Laroche went on. "It's about getting immersed in something, and learning about it, and having it become part of your life. It's a kind of direction." He stopped on the word "direction" and chortled. "If anybody had a plant I didn't have, I made sure to get it. It was like a heroin addiction. If I ever had money I would spend it on plants.
Susan Orlean (The Orchid Thief)
A person only gets to move to New York City for the first time in her life once, Angela, and it’s a pretty big deal. Perhaps this idea doesn’t hold any romance for you, since you are a born New Yorker. Maybe you take this splendid city of ours for granted. Or maybe you love it more than I do, in your own unimaginably intimate way. Without a doubt, you were lucky to be raised here. But you never got to move here—and for that, I am sorry for you. You missed one of life’s great experiences. New York City in 1940! There will never be another New York like that one. I’m not defaming all the New Yorks that came before 1940, or all the New Yorks that came after 1940. They all have their importance. But this is a city that gets born anew in the fresh eyes of every young person who arrives here for the first time. So that city, that place—newly created for my eyes only—will never exist again. It is preserved forever in my memory like an orchid trapped in a paperweight. That city will always be my perfect New York.
Elizabeth Gilbert
I’ve started dreaming in Spanish, which has never happened before. I wake up feeling different, like something inside me is changing, something chemical and irreversible. There’s a magic here working its way through my veins. There’s something about the vegetation, too, that I respond to instinctively - the stunning bougainvillea, the flamboyants and jacarandas, the orchids growing from the trunks of the mysterious ceiba trees. And I love Havana, its noise and decay and painted ladyness. I could happily sit on one of those wrought-iron balconies for days, or keep my grandmother company on her porch, with its ringside view of the sea. I’m afraid to lose all this, to lose Abuela Celia again. But sooner or later I’d have to return to New York. I know now it’s where I belong - not instead of here, but more than here. How can I tell my grandmother this?
Cristina García (Dreaming in Cuban)
For the author as for God, standing outwith his creation, all times are one; all times are now. In mine own country, we accept as due and right – as very meet, right, and our bounden duty – the downs and their orchids and butterflies, the woods and coppices, ash, beech, oak, and field maple, rowan, wild cherry, holly, and hazel, bluebells in their season and willow, alder, and poplar in the wetter ground. We accept as proper and unremarkable the badger and the squirrel, the roe deer and the rabbit, the fox and the pheasant, as the companions of our walks and days. We remark with pleasure, yet take as granted, the hedgerow and the garden, the riot of snowdrops, primroses, and cowslips, the bright flash of kingfishers, the dart of swallows and the peaceful homeliness of house martins, the soft nocturnal glimmer of glow worm and the silent nocturnal swoop of owl.
G.M.W. Wemyss
ON THE DEATH OF THE BELOVED Though we need to weep your loss, You dwell in that safe place in our hearts Where no storm or night or pain can reach you. Your love was like the dawn Brightening over our lives, Awakening beneath the dark A further adventure of color. The sound of your voice Found for us A new music That brightened everything. Whatever you enfolded in your gaze Quickened in the joy of its being; You placed smiles like flowers On the altar of the heart. Your mind always sparkled With wonder at things. Though your days here were brief, Your spirit was alive, awake, complete. We look toward each other no longer From the old distance of our names; Now you dwell inside the rhythm of breath, As close to us as we are to ourselves. Though we cannot see you with outward eyes, We know our soul’s gaze is upon your face, Smiling back at us from within everything To which we bring our best refinement. Let us not look for you only in memory, Where we would grow lonely without you. You would want us to find you in presence, Beside us when beauty brightens, When kindness glows And music echoes eternal tones. When orchids brighten the earth, Darkest winter has turned to spring; May this dark grief flower with hope In every heart that loves you. May you continue to inspire us: To enter each day with a generous heart. To serve the call of courage and love Until we see your beautiful face again In that land where there is no more separation, Where all tears will be wiped from our mind, And where we will never lose you again.
John O'Donohue (To Bless the Space Between Us: A Book of Blessings)
If you set out alone and sovereign, unconnected to a family, a religion, a nationality, a tradition, a class, then pretty soon you are too lonely, too self-invented and unique, and too much aware that there is no one else like you in the world. If you submerge yourself completely in something - your town or your profession or your hobby - then pretty soon you have to struggle up to the surface because you need to be sure that even though you are a part of something big, some community, you still exist as a single unit with a single mind. It is the fundamental contradictoriness of the United States of America - the illogical but optimistic notion that you can create a union of individuals in which every man is king.
Susan Orlean (The Orchid Thief)
Now I dream of the soft touch of women, the songs of birds, the smell of soil crumbling between my fingers, and the brilliant green of plants that I diligently nurture. I am looking for land to buy and I will sow it with deer and wild pigs and birds and cottonwoods and sycamores and build a pond and the ducks will come and fish will rise in the early evening light and take the insects into their jaws. There will be paths through this forest and you and I will lose ourselves in the soft curves and folds of the ground. We will come to the water’s edge and lie on the grass and there will be a small, unobtrusive sign that says, THIS IS THE REAL WORLD, MUCHACHOS, AND WE ARE ALL IN IT.—B. TRAVEN. . . .
Charles Bowden (Blood Orchid: An Unnatural History of America)
Endless love and voluptuous appetite pervaded this stifling nave in which settled the ardent sap of the tropics. Renée was wrapped in the powerful bridals of the earth that gave birth to these dark growths, these colossal stamina; and the acrid birth-throes of this hotbed, of this forest growth, of this mass of vegetation aglow with the entrails that nourished it, surrounded her with disturbing odours. At her feet was the steaming tank, its tepid water thickened by the sap from the floating roots, enveloping her shoulders with a mantle of heavy vapours, forming a mist that warmed her skin like the touch of a hand moist with desire. Overhead she could smell the palm trees, whose tall leaves shook down their aroma. And more than the stifling heat, more than the brilliant light, more than the great dazzling flowers, like faces laughing or grimacing between the leaves, it was the odours that overwhelmed her. An indescribable perfume, potent, exciting, composed of a thousand different perfumes, hung about her; human exudation, the breath of women, the scent of hair; and breezes sweet and swooningly faint were blended with breezes coarse and pestilential, laden with poison. But amid this strange music of odours, the dominant melody that constantly returned, stifling the sweetness of the vanilla and the orchids' pungency, was the penetrating, sensual smell of flesh, the smell of lovemaking escaping in the early morning from the bedroom of newlyweds.
Émile Zola (La Curée)
But there is a way of despising the dandelion which is not that of the dreary pessimist, but of the more offensive optimist. It can be done in various ways; one of which is saying, "You can get much better dandelions at Selfridge's," or "You can get much cheaper dandelions at Woolworth's." Another way is to observe with a casual drawl, "Of course nobody but Gamboli in Vienna really understands dandelions," or saying that nobody would put up with the old-fashioned dandelion since the super-dandelion has been grown in the Frankfurt Palm Garden; or merely sneering at the stinginess of providing dandelions, when all the best hostesses give you an orchid for your buttonhole and a bouquet of rare exotics to take away with you. These are all methods of undervaluing the thing by comparison; for it is not familiarity but comparison that breeds contempt. And all such captious comparisons are ultimately based on the strange and staggering heresy that a human being has a right to dandelions; that in some extraordinary fashion we can demand the very pick of all the dandelions in the garden of Paradise; that we owe no thanks for them at all and need feel no wonder at them at all; and above all no wonder at being thought worthy to receive them. Instead of saying, like the old religious poet, "What is man that Thou carest for him, or the son of man that Thou regardest him?" we are to say like the discontented cabman, "What's this?" or like the bad-tempered Major in the club, "Is this a chop fit for a gentleman?" Now I not only dislike this attitude quite as much as the Swinburnian pessimistic attitude, but I think it comes to very much the same thing; to the actual loss of appetite for the chop or the dish of dandelion-tea. And the name of it is Presumption and the name of its twin brother is Despair. This is the principle I was maintaining when I seemed an optimist to Mr. Max Beerbohm; and this is the principle I am still maintaining when I should undoubtedly seem a pessimist to Mr. Gordon Selfridge. The aim of life is appreciation; there is no sense in not appreciating things; and there is no sense in having more of them if you have less appreciation of them.
G.K. Chesterton (The Autobiography of G.K. Chesterton)
My four things I care about are truth, meaning, fitness and grace. [...] Sam [Harris] would like to make an argument that the better and more rational our thinking is, the more it can do everything that religion once did. [...] I think about my personal physics hero, Dirac – who was the guy who came up with the equation for the electron, less well-known than the Einstein equations but arguably even more beautiful...in order to predict that, he needed a positively-charged and a negatively-charged particle, and the only two known at the time were the electron and the proton to make up, let's say, a hydrogen atom. Well, the proton is quite a bit heavier than the electron and so he told the story that wasn't really true, where the proton was the anti-particle of the electron, and Heisenberg pointed out that that couldn't be because the masses are too far off and they have to be equal. Well, a short time later, the anti-electron -- the positron, that is -- was found, I guess by Anderson at Caltech in the early 30s and then an anti-proton was created some time later. So it turned out that the story had more meaning than the exact version of the story...so the story was sort of more true than the version of the story that was originally told. And I could tell you a similar story with Einstein, I could tell it to you with Darwin, who, you know, didn't fully understand the implications of his theory, as is evidenced by his screwing up a particular kind of orchid in his later work...not understanding that his theory completely explained that orchid! So there's all sorts of ways in which we get the...the truth wrong the first several times we try it, but the meaning of the story that we tell somehow remains intact. And I think that that's a very difficult lesson for people who just want to say, 'Look, I want to'...you know, Feynman would say, "If an experiment disagrees with you, then you're wrong' and it's a very appealing story to tell to people – but it's also worth noting that Feynman never got a physical law of nature and it may be that he was too wedded to this kind of rude judgment of the unforgiving. Imagine you were innovating in Brazilian jiu-jitsu. The first few times might not actually work. But if you told yourself the story, 'No, no, no – this is actually genius and it's working; no, you just lost three consecutive bouts' -- well, that may give you the ability to eventually perfect the move, perfect the technique, even though you were lying to yourself during the period in which it was being set up. It's a little bit like the difference between scaffolding and a building. And too often, people who are crazy about truth reject scaffolding, which is an intermediate stage in getting to the final truth.
Eric R. Weinstein