Oyster Quotes

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

All art is autobiographical; the pearl is the oyster's autobiography.
Federico Fellini
The world was my oyster but I used the wrong fork.
Oscar Wilde
The pearls weren't really white, they were a warm oyster beige, with little knots in between so if they broke, you only lost one. I wished my life could be like that, knotted up so that even if something broke, the whole thing wouldn't come apart.
Janet Fitch (White Oleander)
As I ate the oysters with their strong taste of the sea and their faint metallic taste that the cold white wine washed away, leaving only the sea taste and the succulent texture, and as I drank their cold liquid from each shell and washed it down with the crisp taste of the wine, I lost the empty feeling and began to be happy and to make plans.
Ernest Hemingway (A Moveable Feast)
Stick Boy liked Match Girl, He liked her a lot. He liked her cute figure, he thought she was hot. But could a flame ever burn for a match and a stick? It did quite literally; he burned up quick.
Tim Burton (The Melancholy Death of Oyster Boy and Other Stories)
I will not eat oysters. I want my food dead. Not sick. Not wounded. Dead.
Woody Allen
My mother was an oyster,” he said with a wink. “And I’m the pearl.
Leigh Bardugo (Siege and Storm (The Shadow and Bone Trilogy, #2))
But the life of a man is of no greater importance to the universe than that of an oyster.
David Hume (On Suicide)
He was a bold man that first ate an oyster.
Jonathan Swift
Son, are you happy? I don't mean to pry, but do you dream of Heaven? Have you ever wanted to die?
Tim Burton (The Melancholy Death of Oyster Boy and Other Stories)
I've long believed that good food, good eating, is all about risk. Whether we're talking about unpasteurized Stilton, raw oysters or working for organized crime 'associates,' food, for me, has always been an adventure
Anthony Bourdain (Kitchen Confidential: Adventures in the Culinary Underbelly)
The world is your oyster. It's up to you to find the pearls.
Chris Gardner (The Pursuit of Happyness)
Let us go, through certain half-deserted streets, / The muttering retreats / Of restless nights in one-night cheap hotels / And sawdust restaurants with oyster-shells: / Streets that follow like a tedious argument / Of insidious intent / To lead you to an overwhelming question.../ Oh, do not ask, 'What is it?' / Let us go and make our visit"' 'I'm in love with you,' he said quietly.
John Green (The Fault in Our Stars)
Eating a raw oyster is like french kissing a mermaid.
Tom Robbins
The world is your oyster... ...too bad you're allergic to shellfish.
Paul Neilan (Apathy and Other Small Victories)
Methinks we have hugely mistaken this matter of Life and Death. Methinks that what they call my shadow here on earth is my true substance. Methinks that in looking at things spiritual, we are too much like oysters observing the sun through the water, and thinking that thick water the thinnest of air. Me thinks my body is but the lees of my better being. In fact take my body who will, take it I say, it is not me.
Herman Melville (Moby Dick)
I am not tragically colored. There is no great sorrow dammed up in my soul, nor lurking behind my eyes. I do not mind at all. I do not belong to the sobbing school of Negrohood who hold that nature somehow has given them a lowdown dirty deal and whose feelings are all hurt about it. Even in the helter-skelter skirmish that is my life, I have seen that the world is to the strong regardless of a little pigmentation more or less. No, I do not weep at the world—I am too busy sharpening my oyster knife.
Zora Neale Hurston (Dust Tracks on a Road)
My name is Jimmy, but my friends just call me the hideous penguin boy.
Tim Burton (The Melancholy Death of Oyster Boy and Other Stories)
Oysters open completely when the moon is full; and when the crab sees one it throws a piece of stone or seaweed into it and the oyster cannot close again so that it serves the crab for meat. Such is the fate of him who opens his mouth too much and thereby puts himself at the mercy of the listener. Leonardo da Vinci, 1452-1519
Robert Greene (The 48 Laws of Power)
Everyone is so afraid of death, but the real sufis just laugh: nothing tyrannizes their hearts. What strikes the oyster shell does not damage the pearl
Rumi
They took a baseball bat and whacked open his head. Mummy Boy fell to the ground; he finally was dead. Inside of his head were no candy or prizes, just a few stray beetles of various sizes.
Tim Burton (The Melancholy Death of Oyster Boy and Other Stories)
A lover's a liar, To himself he lies, The truthful are loveless, Like oysters their eyes!
Kurt Vonnegut Jr. (Cat's Cradle)
...like a grain of sand that gets into an oyster's shell. What if the grain doesn't want to become a pearl? Is it ever asked to climb out quietly and take up its old position as a bit of ocean floor?
Robin McKinley (The Blue Sword (Damar, #1))
No, I do not weep at the world. I'm too busy sharpening my oyster knife.
Zora Neale Hurston (Folklore, Memoirs, and Other Writings)
My diagnosis," he said "for better or worse, is that your son is the result of an old pharaoh's curse.
Tim Burton (The Melancholy Death of Oyster Boy and Other Stories)
They luxuriated in the feeling of deep and all pervading satisfaction, a feeling of knowing absolutely that all was well with the world and them and that the world was not only their oyster it was also their linguine with clam sauce. Not only were all things possible, but all things were theirs.
Hubert Selby Jr. (Requiem for a Dream)
Let us go then, you and I, When the evening is spread out against the sky Like a patient etherised upon a table; Let us go, through certain half-deserted streets, The muttering retreats 5 Of restless nights in one-night cheap hotels And sawdust restaurants with oyster-shells: Streets that follow like a tedious argument Of insidious intent To lead you to an overwhelming question … 10 Oh, do not ask, “What is it?” Let us go and make our visit. In the room the women come and go Talking of Michelangelo.
T.S. Eliot
I wanted adventures. I wanted to go up the Nung river to the heart of darkness in Cambodia. I wanted to ride out into a desert on camelback, sand and dunes in every direction, eat whole roasted lamb with my fingers. I wanted to kick snow off my boots in a Mafiya nightclub in Russia. I wanted to play with automatic weapons in Phnom Penh, recapture the past in a small oyster village in France, step into a seedy neon-lit pulqueria in rural Mexico. I wanted to run roadblocks in the middle of the night, blowing past angry militia with a handful of hurled Marlboro packs, experience fear, excitement, wonder. I wanted kicks – the kind of melodramatic thrills and chills I’d yearned for since childhood, the kind of adventure I’d found as a little boy in the pages of my Tintin comic books. I wanted to see the world – and I wanted the world to be just like the movies
Anthony Bourdain (A Cook's Tour: Global Adventures in Extreme Cuisines)
It enclosed us in its laceries as we watched the moon spill across the Atlantic like wine from an overturned glass. With the light all around us, we felt secret in that moon-infused water like pearls forming in the soft tissues of oysters.
Pat Conroy (Beach Music)
After killing the red-haired man, I took myself off to Quinn’s for an oyster supper.
Michael Cox (The Meaning of Night (The Meaning of Night, #1))
If from the beginning you always believed that a ticket was only one-way, then you wouldn't have to try so vainly to cling to the sand like an oyster to a rock.
Kōbō Abe (The Woman in the Dunes)
We build a shell around it, like an oyster dealing with a painful particle of grit, coating it with smooth pearl layers in order to cope. This is how we walk and talk and function , day in, day out. Immune to others’ pain and loss.
Neil Gaiman (American Gods (American Gods, #1))
There are stories that are true, in which each individual's tale is unique and tragic, and the worst of the tragedy is that we have heard it before, and we cannot allow ourselves to feel it to deeply. We build a shell around it like an oyster dealing with a painful particle of grit, coating it with smooth pearl layers in order to cope. This is how we walk and talk and function, day in, day out, immune to others' pain and loss. If it were to touch us it would cripple us or make saints of us; but, for the most part, it does not touch us. We cannot allow it to.
Neil Gaiman (American Gods (American Gods, #1))
It’s a pity if someone… has to console himself for the wreck of his days with the notion that somehow his voice, his work embodies the deepest, most obscure, freshest, rawest oyster of reality in the unfathomable refrigerator of the heart’s ocean, but I am such a one, and there you have it.
Leonard Cohen (Stranger Music: Selected Poems and Songs)
Mr. Smith yelled at the doctor, What have you done to my boy? He's not flesh and blood, he's aluminum alloy!" The doctor said gently, What I'm going to say will sound pretty wild. But you're not the father of this strange looking child. You see, there still is some question about the child's gender, but we think that its father is a microwave blender.
Tim Burton (The Melancholy Death of Oyster Boy and Other Stories)
I am Envy, begotten of a chimney-sweeper and an oyster-wife. I cannot read, and therefore wish all books were burnt; I am lean with seeing others eat - O that there would come a famine through all the world, that all might die, and I live alone; then thou should'st see how fat I would be! But must thou sit and I stand? Come down, with a vengeance!
Christopher Marlowe (Doctor Faustus)
Oysters are a lot like women. It's how we survive the hurts in life that brings us strength and gives us our beauty.
Beth Hoffman (Saving CeeCee Honeycutt)
Why, then the world ’s mine oyster, Which I with sword will open.
William Shakespeare (The Merry Wives of Windsor)
It's easy to get the feeling that you know the language just because when you order a beer they don't bring you oysters. (Paul Child)
Julia Child (My Life in France)
Do not enjoy yourself. Enjoy dances and theaters and joy-rides and champagne and oysters; enjoy jazz and cocktails and night-clubs if you can enjoy nothing better; enjoy bigamy and burglary and any crime in the calendar, in preference to the other alternative; but never learn to enjoy yourself.
G.K. Chesterton
O Oysters,' said the Carpenter, You've had a pleasant run! Shall we be trotting home again?' But answer came there none - And this was scarcely odd, because They'd eaten every one.
Lewis Carroll
They're not that different from you, are they? Same haircuts. Full of hormones, just like you. Invincible, just like you feel. The world is their oyster. They believe they're destined for great things, just like many of you, their eyes are full of hope, just like you. Did they wait until it was too late to make from their lives even one iota of what they were capable? Because, you see gentlemen, these boys are now fertilizing daffodils. But if you listen real close, you can hear them whisper their legacy to you. Go on, lean in. Listen, you hear it? - - Carpe - - hear it? - - Carpe, carpe diem, seize the day boys, make your lives extraordinary.
N.H. Kleinbaum (Dead Poets Society)
In the sea of my emotions, his presence is like a pearl in the oyster. Very hard to locate, yet very precious and still beautiful.
Mehek Bassi (Chained: Can you escape fate?)
The world is an oyster but you don't crack it open on a mattress
Arthur Miller
Irritated fans produce fanfic like irritated oysters produce pearls.
Anne Jamison (Fic: Why Fanfiction is Taking Over the World)
Only that I insist upon your dining with us. It will be ready in half an hour. I have oysters and a brace of grouse, with something a little choice in white wines. Watson, you have never yet recognized my merits as a housekeeper. ~ Sherlock Holmes
Arthur Conan Doyle (The Sign of Four (Sherlock Holmes, #2))
To be a pearl maker, your oyster needs a good strong shell to protect you from a hundred million irritants in your environment. Your shell helps you tell one grain of sand from the other. You know which one can become a pearl and which one isn't worth the irritation.
Annie Kagan (The Afterlife of Billy Fingers: How My Bad-Boy Brother Proved to Me There's Life After Death)
Oh! But he was a tight-fisted hand at the grindstone, Scrooge! a squeezing, wrenching, grasping, scraping, clutching, covetous, old sinner! Hard and sharp as flint, from which no steel had ever struck out generous fire; secret, and self-contained, and solitary as an oyster.
Charles Dickens (A Christmas Carol)
Unwisely, Santa offered a teddy bear to James, unaware he had been mauled by a grizzly earlier this year.
Tim Burton (The Melancholy Death of Oyster Boy and Other Stories)
Grown-ups didn't seem to realize that for me, as for most other schoolboys, it was easier to keep silent than to speak. I was a natural oyster.
L.P. Hartley (The Go-Between)
We fitted together like the two halves of an oyster-shell. I was Narcissus, embracing the pond in which I was about to drown. However much we had to hide our love, however guarded we had to be about our pleasure, I could not long be miserable about a thing so very sweet. Nor, in my gladness, could I quite believe that anybody would be anything but happy for me if only they knew.
Sarah Waters (Tipping the Velvet)
A pearl is a beautiful thing that is produced by an injured life. It is the tear [that results] from the injury of the oyster. The treasure of our being in this world is also produced by an injured life. If we had not been wounded, if we had not been injured, then we will not produce the pearl.
Stephan A. Hoeller
Hope was luster, and they had shone with it like twin pearls in an oyster.
Laini Taylor (Muse of Nightmares (Strange the Dreamer, #2))
Be as bold as the first man or [woman] to eat an oyster.
Shirley Chisholm
I am a teller of stories...a weaver of dreams. I can dance, sing, and in the right weather stand on my head. I know seven words of Latin. I have a little magic and a trick or two. I know the proper way to meet a dragon, can fight dirty but not fair, and once swallowed thirty oysters in a minute. I am not domestic. I am a luxury, and in that sense, necessary.
Anthony Minghella (Jim Henson's The Storyteller)
Miles was still mourning the loss of his Romantic Plan. 'There was going to be champagne, and oysters, and you' -- he held out both hands as though shifting a piece of furniture -- 'were going to be sitting there, and I was going to get down on one knee, and...and...
Lauren Willig (The Masque of the Black Tulip (Pink Carnation, #2))
The Boy with Nails in His Eyes put up his aluminum tree. It looked pretty strange because he couldn't really see.
Tim Burton (The Melancholy Death of Oyster Boy and Other Stories)
Indeed, I cannot think why the whole bed of the ocean is not one solid mass of oysters, so prolific the creatures seem. Ah, I am wandering! Strange how the brain controls the brain! What was I saying, Watson?
Arthur Conan Doyle (The Adventure of the Dying Detective)
in until ten, not even on Mardi Gras nights. No one except the girl in the black silk dress, the thin little girl with the short, soft dark hair that fell in a curtain across her eyes. Christian always wanted to brush it away from her face, to feel it trickle through his fingers like rain. Tonight, as usual, she slipped in at nine-thirty and looked around for the friends who were never there. The wind blew the French Quarter in behind her, the night air rippling warm down Chartres Street as it slipped away toward the river, smelling of spice and fried oysters and whiskey and the dust of ancient bones stolen and violated.
Poppy Z. Brite (Lost Souls)
Constant work, constant writing and constant revision. The real writer learns nothing from life. He is more like an oyster or a sponge. What he takes in he takes in normally the way any person takes in experience. But it is what is done with it in his mind, if he is a real writer, that makes his art.
Gore Vidal
His lyrical whistle beckoned me to adventure and forgetting. But I didn't want to forget. Hugging my grudge, ugly and prickly, a sad sea urchin, I trudged off on my own, in the opposite direction toward the forbidding prison. As from a star I saw, coldly and soberly, the separateness of everything. I felt the wall of my skin; I am I. That stone is a stone. My beautiful fusion with the things of this world was over. The Tide ebbed, sucked back into itself. There I was, a reject, with the dried black seaweed whose hard beads I liked to pop, hollowed orange and grapefruit halves and a garbage of shells. All at once, old and lonely, I eyed these-- razor clams, fairy boats, weedy mussels, the oyster's pocked gray lace (there was never a pearl) and tiny white "ice cream cones." You could always tell where the best shells were-- at the rim of the last wave, marked by a mascara of tar. I picked up, frigidly, a stiff pink starfish. It lay at the heart of my palm, a joke dummy of my own hand. Sometimes I nursed starfish alive in jam jars of seawater and watched them grow back lost arms. On this day, this awful birthday of otherness, my rival, somebody else, I flung the starfish against a stone. Let it perish.
Sylvia Plath (Johnny Panic and the Bible of Dreams: Short Stories, Prose and Diary Excerpts)
He’s not a rough diamond - a pearl-containing oyster of a rustic; he’s a fierce, pitiless, wolfish man.
Emily Brontë (Wuthering Heights)
Sea sisters, Susa had called them once. Two pearls formed in the same oyster.
Samantha Shannon (The Priory of the Orange Tree)
Pearls rarely turn up in oysters served to you on a plate; you have to dive for them.
Thor Heyerdahl (Kon-Tiki: Across the Pacific by Raft (Enriched Classics))
The minute you land in New Orleans, something wet and dark leaps on you and starts humping you like a swamp dog in heat, and the only way to get that aspect of New Orleans off you is to eat it off. That means beignets and crayfish bisque and jambalaya, it means shrimp remoulade, pecan pie, and red beans with rice, it means elegant pompano au papillote, funky file z'herbes, and raw oysters by the dozen, it means grillades for breakfast, a po' boy with chowchow at bedtime, and tubs of gumbo in between. It is not unusual for a visitor to the city to gain fifteen pounds in a week--yet the alternative is a whole lot worse. If you don't eat day and night, if you don't constantly funnel the indigenous flavors into your bloodstream, then the mystery beast will go right on humping you, and you will feel its sordid presence rubbing against you long after you have left town. In fact, like any sex offender, it can leave permanent psychological scars.
Tom Robbins (Jitterbug Perfume)
He can't fly around tall buildings, or outrun a speeding train, the only talent he seems to have is leaving a nasty stain!
Tim Burton (The Melancholy Death of Oyster Boy and Other Stories)
Young people, Lord. Do they still call it infatuation? That magic ax that chops away the world in one blow, leaving only the couple standing there trembling? Whatever they call it, it leaps over anything, takes the biggest chair, the largest slice, rules the ground wherever it walks, from a mansion to a swamp, and its selfishness is its beauty. Before I was reduced to singsong, I saw all kinds of mating. Most are two-night stands trying to last a season. Some, the riptide ones, claim exclusive right to the real name, even though everybody drowns in its wake. People with no imagination feed it with sex—the clown of love. They don’t know the real kinds, the better kinds, where losses are cut and everybody benefits. It takes a certain intelligence to love like that—softly, without props. But the world is such a showpiece, maybe that’s why folks try to outdo it, put everything they feel onstage just to prove they can think up things too: handsome scary things like fights to the death, adultery, setting sheets afire. They fail, of course. The world outdoes them every time. While they are busy showing off, digging other people’s graves, hanging themselves on a cross, running wild in the streets, cherries are quietly turning from greed to red, oysters are suffering pearls, and children are catching rain in their mouths expecting the drops to be cold but they’re not; they are warm and smell like pineapple before they get heavier and heavier, so heavy and fast they can’t be caught one at a time. Poor swimmers head for shore while strong ones wait for lightning’s silver veins. Bottle-green clouds sweep in, pushing the rain inland where palm trees pretend to be shocked by the wind. Women scatter shielding their hair and men bend low holding the women’s shoulders against their chests. I run too, finally. I say finally because I do like a good storm. I would be one of those people in the weather channel leaning into the wind while lawmen shout in megaphones: ‘Get moving!
Toni Morrison (Love)
You're enough to try the patience of an oyster!
Lewis Carroll (Alice's Adventures in Wonderland / Through the Looking-Glass)
You can say whatever you like to me. I'm your oyster.
Lisa Kleypas (Chasing Cassandra (The Ravenels, #6))
I am very fond of the oyster shell. It is humble and awkward and ugly. It is slate-colored and unsymmetrical. Its form is not primarily beautiful but functional. I make fun of its knobbiness. Sometimes I resent its burdens and excrescences. But its tireless adaptability and tenacity draw my astonished admiration and sometimes even my tears. And it is comfortable in its familiarity, its homeliness, like old garden gloves when have molded themselves perfectly to the shape of the hand. I do not like to put it down. I will not want to leave it.
Anne Morrow Lindbergh (Gift from the Sea)
But then, oh, my blessed, he smiled. I guess from that moment I knew I was going to marry Joseph Wojtkiewicz--God, pope, three motherless children, unspellable name and all. For when he smiled, he looked like the kind of man who would sing to the oysters.
Katherine Paterson (Jacob Have I Loved)
My mom raised me as if there were no limitations on where I could go or what I could do. When I look back I realize she raised me like a white kid—not white culturally, but in the sense of believing that the world was my oyster, that I should speak up for myself, that my ideas and thoughts and decisions mattered. We
Trevor Noah (Born a Crime: Stories from a South African Childhood)
I think oysters are more beautiful than any religion,' he resumed presently. 'They not only forgive our unkindness to them; they justify it, they incite us to go on being perfectly horrid to them. Once they arrive at the supper-table they seem to enter thoroughly into the spirit of the thing. There's nothing in Christianity or Buddhism that quite matches the sympathetic unselfishness of an oyster.
Saki
And they made Alice drink something from a bottle which reduced her to a size where she could no longer cry 'Curiouser and curiouser,' and they gave the Looking Glass one hammer blow to smash it and every Red King and Oyster away!
Ray Bradbury (The Martian Chronicles)
We girls aren't supposed to fall for the good boys.We are supposed to like a bit of grit in our oyster.That's how you get a pearl, after all.
James Lovegrove (The Age of Zeus)
It's a great thing when a man knows how to dance, she said. When a man can dance, the world is his oyster." Adele, Henry's Mother
Joyce Maynard (Labor Day)
You speculate on the luxury of wearing out a whole existence in bed, like an oyster in its shell, content with the sluggish ecstasy of inaction.
Nathaniel Hawthorne
My mother was an oyster, And I'm the pearl.
Leigh Bardugo (Siege and Storm (The Shadow and Bone Trilogy, #2))
Shall the world, then, be overrun by oysters?
Arthur Conan Doyle (The Adventure of the Dying Detective)
No, I do not weep at the world – I am too busy sharpening my oyster knife.
Zora Neale Hurston (How It Feels to Be Colored Me)
Intimacy, says the phenomenologist Gaston Bachelard, is the highest value. I resist this statement at first. What about artistic achievement, or moral courage, or heroism, or altruistic acts, or work in the cause of social change? What about wealth or accomplishment? And yet something about it rings true, finally—that what we want is to be brought into relationship, to be inside, within. Perhaps it’s true that nothing matters more to us than that.
Mark Doty (Still Life with Oysters and Lemon: On Objects and Intimacy)
Do you know how a pearl comes to be?" "Oysters make them, from a bit of sand." "Aiyah. From a bit of sand." He rolled the pearl between his fingers. "All pearls begin as something unpleasant that the oysters cannot expel from themselves, even though they may want to. So they embrace these things that will not leave them, shaping them and smoothing away the sharp edges, until over time, they make of these unwanted things great treasures.
C.L. Wilson (Lady of Light and Shadows (Tairen Soul, #2))
Still perfect,” he said. “Read to me.” “This isn’t really a poem to read aloud when you are sitting next to your sleeping mother. It has, like, sodomy and angel dust in it,” I said. “You just named two of my favorite pastimes,” he said. “Okay, read me something else then?” “Um,” I said. “I don’t have anything else?” “That’s too bad. I am so in the mood for poetry. Do you have anything memorized?” “‘Let us go then, you and I,’” I started nervously, “‘When the evening is spread out against the sky / Like a patient etherized upon a table.’” “Slower,” he said. I felt bashful, like I had when I’d first told him of An Imperial Affliction. “Um, okay. Okay. ‘Let us go, through certain half-deserted streets, / The muttering retreats / Of restless nights in one-night cheap hotels / And sawdust restaurants with oyster-shells: / Streets that follow like a tedious argument / Of insidious intent / To lead you to an overwhelming question . . . / Oh, do not ask, “What is it?” / Let us go and make our visit.’” “I’m in love with you,” he said quietly. “Augustus,” I said. “I am,” he said. He was staring at me, and I could see the corners of his eyes crinkling. “I’m in love with you, and I’m not in the business of denying myself the simple pleasure of saying true things. I’m in love with you, and I know that love is just a shout into the void, and that oblivion is inevitable, and that we’re all doomed and that there will come a day when all our labor has been returned to dust, and I know the sun will swallow the only earth we’ll ever have, and I am in love with you.” “Augustus,” I said again, not knowing what else to say. It felt like everything was rising up in me, like I was drowning in this weirdly painful joy, but I couldn’t say it back. I
John Green
I tried on Claire's double strand of pearls in the mirror, ran the smooth, lustrous beads through my fingers, touched the coral rose of the clasp. The pearls weren't really white, they were a warm oyster beige, with little knots in between so if they broke, you only lost one. I wished my life could be like that, knotted up so that even if something broke, the whole thing wouldn't come apart.
Janet Fitch (White Oleander)
1. "It is what we believe about ourselves that determines how others see us" 2. (regarding friends) "cherish the good and pretend not to notice the harmless rest" 3. "oysters are a lot like women. It's how we survive the hurts in life that brings us strength and gives us our beauty
Beth Hoffman (Saving CeeCee Honeycutt)
Here and gone. That’s what it is to be human, I think—to be both someone and no one at once, to hold a particular identity in the world (our names, our place of origins, our family and affectional ties) and to feel that solid set of ties also capable of dissolution, slipping away, as we become moments of attention.
Mark Doty (Still Life with Oysters and Lemon: On Objects and Intimacy)
what I did not know - I was a young man - is that there are two kinds of love. The kind that starts off big and slowly wears away, that seems you can never use it up and then one day is finished. And the kind that you don't notice at first, but which adds a little bit to itself every day, like an oyster makes a pearl, grain by grain, a jewel from the sand.
Monica Ali (Brick Lane)
The world is your oyster, they say, so fill it with pearls of semen.
Trebor Healey (A Horse Named Sorrow)
She was my friend because she was kind and funny but she had a face like two oysters fused together in a Star Trek matter transporter accident.
Andrew Hinkinson (WOOF!)
Intelligence is perhaps but a malady, -a beautiful malady; the oysters's pearl.
Rémy de Gourmont (Philosophic Nights in Paris,: Being Selections from Promenades Philosophiques)
The shock of standing again under the wide pale sky, completely exposed. This must be what the oyster feels when the lemon juice falls.
Edward St. Aubyn (The Patrick Melrose Novels)
It’s like the world is his oyster, but he doesn’t do seafood.
L.J. Shen (Pretty Reckless (All Saints High, #1))
Listen! Clam up your mouth and be silent like an oyster shell, for that tongue of yours is the enemy of the soul, my friend. When the lips are silent, the heart has a hundred tongues.
Rumi
That wasn't so bad. She said, dabbing at her mouth with a napkin. What was it? That was a Rocky Mountain oyster, also know as a Montana tendergroin. No. I just ate bull's balls? Only one, but yes, you just tore up a tasty testicle. Congratulations!
Kevin Hearne (Tricked (The Iron Druid Chronicles, #4))
At certain times I have no race. I am me. I belong to no race or time. I am the eternal feminine with its string of beads. I do not weep at the world--I am too busy sharpening my oyster knife. I have a strong suspicion, but I can't be sure, that much that passes for constant love is a golded-up moment walking in its sleep. Ships at a distance have every man's wish on board. Sometimes I feel discriminated against, but it does not make me angry. It merely astonishes me. How can anyone deny themselves the pleasure of my company? It's beyond me. There are years that ask questions and years that answer.
Zora Neale Hurston
I'll tell the truth; all of my songs Are pretty much the fucking same I'm not a faerie but I need More than this life so I became This creature representing more to you Than just another girl And if I had a chance to change my mind I wouldn't for the world Twenty years Sinking slowly Can I trust you But I don't want to I don't want to be a legend Oh well that's a god damned lie - I do To say I do this for the people I admit is hardly true You tell me everything's all right As though it's something you've been through You think this torment is romantic Well it's not except to you Twenty years Sinking slowly Can I trust you But I don't want to I will swallow If it will help my sea level go down But I'll come back to haunt you if I drown Low tide and high tea The oysters are waiting for me If I'm not there on time I'll send my emissary If I photoshop you Out of every picture I could Go quietly quiet But would that do any good Will it hurt? No it won't Then what am I so afraid of Filthy victorians They made me what I'm made of The brighter the light The darker the shadow I don't need a minder I've made up my mind Go away
Emilie Autumn
The oyster was an animal worthy of New Orleans, as mysterious and private and beautiful as the city itself. If one could accept that oysters build their houses out of their lives, one could imagine the same of New Orleans, whose houses were similarly and resolutely shuttered against an outside world that could never be trusted to show proper sensitivity toward the oozing delicacies within.
Tom Robbins (Jitterbug Perfume)
Week after Clyde left you I heard that Cocoa wake up to her cootchie spoilt like a rotten oyster. Didn't get better for three months. Bertrina she good friends with Cocoa She knows your prayer works.
Kathryn Stockett (The Help)
Let her arm go and pray she has no bruise,” a familiar voice said in a low angry tone. I shuddered from relief at the sound of his voice. Trey released my arm and shrugged, grinning. “I just wanted an oyster, and she wouldn’t serve me.” I opened my mouth to protest when the warm fingers holding my arm softly squeezed me for reassurance. So, I stayed quiet. “Jason, please escort your friend to the door. I have no other reason to speak with him unless Sadie has a bruise or any lasting marks from his hands, and then he will see me again.
Abbi Glines (Breathe (Sea Breeze, #1))
Nothing that had ever happened to him, not the shooting of Oyster, or the piteous muttering expiration of John Wesley Shannenhouse, or the death of his father, or internment of his mother and grandfather, not even the drowning of his beloved brother, had ever broken his heart quite as terribly as the realization, when he was halfway to the rimed zinc hatch of the German station, that he was hauling a corpse behind him
Michael Chabon (The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier & Clay)
i have had my ups and downs but wotthehell wotthehell yesterday sceptres and crowns fried oysters and velvet gowns and today i herd with bums but wotthehell wotthehell i wake the world from sleep as i caper and sing and leap when i sing my wild free tune wotthehell wotthehell under the blear eyed moon i am pelted with cast off shoon but wotthehell wotthehell
Don Marquis (The Annotated Archy and Mehitabel)
I would like to meet myself sometime to see how I would look to myself. But I'd have to be in an extremely good state of mind on such a day, because I don't like unpleasantness.
Multatuli (The Oyster and the Eagle: Selected Aphorisms and Parables)
Oh, sometimes I like to put the sand of doubt into the oyster of my faith." (Br. Cadfael)
Ellis Peters (The Leper of Saint Giles (Chronicles of Brother Cadfael, #5))
So come on out, my dear old sweet Sister, - & we'll open our oysters together.
Edna St. Vincent Millay
Oysters, clams, and cockles were cat's magic words, and like all good magic words they could take her almost anywhere.
George R.R. Martin (A Feast for Crows (A Song of Ice and Fire, #4))
In description words adhere to certain objects, and have the effect on the sense of oysters, or barnacles.
William Carlos Williams
In grave danger of suffocation, the mermaid peeled away from him and emitted a sonar wail that woke drowned sailors from their oyster beds.
Kevin Ansbro (The Minotaur's Son & Other Wild Tales)
You can make an oyster surrender its pearl,” Clara says. “All you need is persistence and a sharp enough knife.
John Langan (The Fisherman)
If you roll a pearl around your mouth it slowly reveals the dreams of oysters, memories of the sea, the taste of orgasm.
Chloe Thurlow (Girl Trade)
And I had my first oyster. Now, this was a truly significant event. I remember it like I remember losing my virginity — and in many ways, more fondly. August
Anthony Bourdain (Kitchen Confidential: Adventures in the Culinary Underbelly)
Sometimes people are like oysters: the only thing we need to do is wait for them to release the pearl that they've been harbouring inside.
A.G. Roemmers (El regreso del joven príncipe)
Is a virus self-aware? Nyet. How about oyster? I doubt it. A cat? Almost certainly. A human? Don’t know about you, tovarishch, but I am.
Robert A. Heinlein (The Moon is a Harsh Mistress)
poetry is not—except in a very limited sense—a form of self-expression. Who on earth supposes that the pearl expresses the oyster?
Cecil Day-Lewis (Selected Poetry (The Penguin Poets))
The wise oyster stays in its shell.
Marty Rubin
The oysters are spoiled, the servants are ugly. I hate humankind.
Victor Hugo (Les Misérables)
As a pearl is formed and its layers grow, a rich iridescence begins to glow. The oyster has taken what was at first an irritation and intrusion and uses it to enrich its value. How can you coat or frame the changes in your life to harvest beauty, brilliance, and wisdom?
Susan C. Young
I didn't grow up feeling smart and special, the world my oyster, born with a silver shucker in my hand. No one works harder than you, that's the way Zell and Juwon liked to put it. Everything I have is because I was the dutiful worker bee or because I have no other things to distract me, like girlfriends or wives, like mewling kids or family dogs or a love of weekend brunches and fantasy football, or a single, sad hobby, like solitaire or the Sunday jumble. I have this.
Megan Abbott (Give Me Your Hand)
My mom raised me as if there were no limitations on where I could go or what I could do. When I look back I realize she raised me like a white kid - not white culturally, but in the sense of believing that the world was my oyster, that I should speak up for myself, that my ideas and thoughts and decisions mattered.
Trevor Noah (Born a Crime: Stories From a South African Childhood)
Alone and rejected, Mummy Boy wept, then went to the cabinet where the snack food was kept.
Tim Burton (The Melancholy Death of Oyster Boy and Other Stories)
There is lovemaking that is bad for a person, just as there is eating that is bad. That boysenberry cream pie from the Thrift-E Mart may appear inviting, may, in fact, cause all nine hundred taste buds to carol from the tongue, but in the end, the sugars, the additives, the empty calories clog arteries, disrupt cells, generate fat, and rot teeth. Even potentially nourishing foods can be improperly prepared. There are wrong combinations and improper preparations in sex as well. Yes, one must prepare for a fuck--the way an enlightened priest prepares to celebrate mass, the way a great matador prepares for the ring: with intensification, with purification, with a conscious summoning of sacred power. And even that won't work if the ingredients are poorly matched: oysters are delectable, so are strawberries, but mashed together ... (?!) Every nutritious sexual recipe calls for at least a pinch of love, and the fucks that rate four-star rankings from both gourmets and health-food nuts use cupfuls. Not that sex should be regarded as therapeutic or to be taken for medicinal purposes--only a dullard would hang such a millstone around the nibbled neck of a lay--but to approach sex carelessly, shallowly, with detachment and without warmth is to dine night after night in erotic greasy spoons. In time, one's palate will become insensitive, one will suffer (without knowing it) emotional malnutrition, the skin of the soul will fester with scurvy, the teeth of the heart will decay. Neither duration nor proclamation of commitment is necessarily the measure--there are ephemeral explosions of passion between strangers that make more erotic sense than lengthy marriages, there are one-night stands in Jersey City more glorious than six-months affairs in Paris--but finally there is a commitment, however brief; a purity, however threatened; a vulnerability, however concealed; a generosity of spirit, however marbled with need; and honest caring, however singled by lust, that must be present if couplings are to be salubrious and not slow poison.
Tom Robbins (Still Life with Woodpecker)
Like the sand and the oyster, it's a creative irritant. In each poem, I'm trying to reveal a truth, so it can't have a fictional beginning.
Carol Ann Duffy
Through the mind like an oyster labors on and on, / A grain of sand is all we have
Sylvia Plath (Plath: Poems)
47 - A noisy noise annoys an oyster.  
Riley Weber (Tongue Twisters for Kids)
Now I am beginning to live a little and feel less like a sick oyster at low tide.
Louisa May Alcott
On writers' workshops: "It is the dab of grit that seeps into an oyster's shell that makes the pearl, not pearl-making seminars with other oysters.
Stephen King (On Writing: A Memoir of the Craft)
I was conscious of a passing pang for the oyster world, feeling--and I think correctly--that life for these unfortunate bivalves must be one damn thing after another.
P.G. Wodehouse (Jeeves and the Feudal Spirit (Jeeves, #11))
Harry - “No plovers no pigeons no snipe. No oysters mussels clams or whole lobsters. No artichokes no savories no cheese.” He paused for breath then went on “Nothing too rich nothing too highly seasoned. And never more than one glass of wine. Did I miss any no-noes ” Emma - She sighed. “When it comes to my work I do wish you would be serious.” Harry - “I am serious ” he assured her. “After reading this I understand why women have such tiny waists and go about fainting all the time. I thought it was corsets but no. You’re all hungry .
Laura Lee Guhrke (And Then He Kissed Her (Girl Bachelors, #1))
I wonder if we might pledge ourselves to remember what life is really all about—not to be afraid that we're less flashy than the next, not to worry that our influence is not that of a tornado, but rather that of a grain of sand in an oyster! Do we have that kind of patience?
Fred Rogers
The most extraordinary thing about the oyster is this. Irritation gets into his shell. He does not like them. But when he cannot get rid of them he uses the irritation to do the lovelist thing an oyster ever has the chance to do. If there are irritations in our lives today, there is only one prescription: make a pearl. It may have to be a pearl of patience, but…make a pearl. -In the Treasure Chest, ed. Charles L. Wallis
Harry Emerson Fosdick
You are eating the sea, that's it, only the sensation of a gulp of sea water has been wafted out of it by some sorcery, and you are on the verge of remembering you don't know what, mermaids or the sudden smell of kelp on the ebb tide or a poem you read once, something connected with the flavor of life itself...
Eleanor Clark (The Oysters of Locmariaquer)
Oh! but he was a tight-fisted hand at the grindstone, Scrooge! a squeezing, wrenching, grasping, scraping, clutching, covetous old sinner! Hard and sharp as flint, from which no steel had ever struck out generous fire; secret, and self-contained, and solitary as an oyster. The cold within him froze his old features, nipped his pointed nose, shriveled his cheek, stiffened his gait; made his eyes red, his thin lips blue; and spoke out shrewdly in his grating voice. A frosty rime was on his head, and on his eyebrows, and his wiry chin. He carried his own low temperature always about with him; he iced his office in the dog-days and didn't thaw it one degree at Christmas.
Charles Dickens (A Christmas Carol)
Memory in these incomparable streets, in mosaics of pain and sweetness, was clear to me now, a unity at last. I remembered small and unimportant things from the past: the whispers of roommates during thunderstorms, the smell of brass polish on my fingertips, the first swim at Folly Beach in April, lightning over the Atlantic, shelling oysters at Bowen's Island during a rare Carolina snowstorm, pigeons strutting across the graveyard at St. Philip's, lawyers moving out of their offices to lunch on Broad Street, the darkness of reveille on cold winter mornings, regattas, the flash of bagpipers' tartans passing in review, blue herons on the marshes, the pressure of the chinstrap on my shako, brotherhood, shad roe at Henry's, camellias floating above water in a porcelain bowl, the scowl of Mark Santoro, and brotherhood again.
Pat Conroy (The Lords of Discipline)
Is there something I should know?” Valerius asked them. The instant Vane opened his mouth to speak, Tabitha kicked his shin. Hard. Vane yelped, then frowned at her. “What was that?” Valerius asked. “Why did you kick him?” “No reason,” Tabitha said, reaching over the bar to pluck an oyster from the pile. She looked angelic, which meant something truly evil was going on.
Sherrilyn Kenyon (Seize the Night (Dark-Hunter #6))
He says that woman speaks with nature. That she hears voices from under the earth. That wind blows in her ears and trees whisper to her. That the dead sing through her mouth and the cries of infants are clear to her. But for him this dialogue is over. He says he is not part of this world, that he was set on this world as a stranger. He sets himself apart from woman and nature. And so it is Goldilocks who goes to the home of the three bears, Little Red Riding Hood who converses with the wolf, Dorothy who befriends a lion, Snow White who talks to the birds, Cinderella with mice as her allies, the Mermaid who is half fish, Thumbelina courted by a mole. (And when we hear in the Navaho chant of the mountain that a grown man sits and smokes with bears and follows directions given to him by squirrels, we are surprised. We had thought only little girls spoke with animals.) We are the bird's eggs. Bird's eggs, flowers, butterflies, rabbits, cows, sheep; we are caterpillars; we are leaves of ivy and sprigs of wallflower. We are women. We rise from the wave. We are gazelle and doe, elephant and whale, lilies and roses and peach, we are air, we are flame, we are oyster and pearl, we are girls. We are woman and nature. And he says he cannot hear us speak. But we hear.
Susan Griffin (Woman and Nature: The Roaring Inside Her)
MAN 1: I’m hungry. MAN 2: Me too. Hey, I found a rock with a snot in it. I was thinking of eating it. MAN 1: Um, okay. Go ahead. MAN 2: (slurps up the oyster) MAN 1: What does it taste like? MAN 2: Pneumonia.
Jim Gaffigan (Food: A Love Story)
I chose to see emigration and globe-trotting as an escape, not as a loss. Nowhere to call home? No problem, the world is my oyster. Where are you from, they ask. Does it matter, I answer. But it does. Because how can you truly know yourself, and how can you know other place and people, if you don't even know where you come from?
Kapka Kassabova (Street without a Name: Childhood and Other Misadventures in Bulgaria)
When you are young and healthy, you believe you will live forever. You do not worry about losing any of your capabilities. People tell you “the world is your oyster,” “the sky is the limit,” and so on. And you are willing to delay gratification—to invest years, for example, in gaining skills and resources for a brighter future. You seek to plug into bigger streams of knowledge and information. You widen your networks of friends and connections, instead of hanging out with your mother. When horizons are measured in decades, which might as well be infinity to human beings, you most desire all that stuff at the top of Maslow’s pyramid—achievement, creativity, and other attributes of “self-actualization.” But as your horizons contract—when you see the future ahead of you as finite and uncertain—your focus shifts to the here and now, to everyday pleasures and the people closest to you.
Atul Gawande (Being Mortal: Medicine and What Matters in the End)
All there was to it, he was in a panic. He was scared stiff that any minute a fact might come bouncing in that would force him to send me down to Cramer bearing gifts, and there was practically nothing on earth he wouldn't rather do, even eating ice cream with cantaloupe or horseradish on oysters.
Rex Stout (If Death Ever Slept (Nero Wolfe, #29))
She talks as she sails, the old wooden boat -- of oyster days, and summer bays, and watermen grown old.
M. Kei (Take Five: Best Contemporary Tanka, Volume 4)
Do you appreciate that an oyster has, among its other organs, a heart?
Padgett Powell (The Interrogative Mood)
I'm becoming more a vessel of memories than a person it's a myth / that love lives in the heart it lives in the throat we push it out / when we speak when we gasp we take a little for ourselves / in books love can be war-ending a soldier drops his sword / to lie forking oysters into his enemy's mouth in life we hold love up to the light / to marvel at its impotence
Kaveh Akbar (Calling a Wolf a Wolf)
The sea-lentils tied to giant serpentine string beans, sea-liquor brine, sea-lyme grass, sea-moss, sea-cucumbers. He never knew the sea had such a lavish garden—sea-plumes, sea-grapes, sea-lungs. […] The sky put on its own evanescent spectacles, a pivoting stage, fugitive curtains, decors for ballets, floating icebergs, unrolled bolts of chiffon, gold and pearl necklaces, marabous of oyster white, scarves of Indian saris, flying feathers, shorn lambs, geometric architecture in snows and cotton. His theater was the clouds, where no spectacle repeated itself.
Anaïs Nin
Let us go then, you and I, When the evening is spread out against the sky Like a patient etherized upon a table. Let us go, through certain half-deserted streets, The muttering retreats Of restless nights in one-night cheap hotels And sawdust restaurants with oyster shells: Streets that follow like a tedious argument Of insidious intent To lead you to an overwhelming question... Oh, do not ask, "What is it?" Let us go and make our visit. We have lingered in the chambers of the sea By sea-girls wreathed with seaweed red and brown Till human voices wake us, and we drown.
T.S. Eliot (The Fault in Our Stars)
But when the door shuts on us, all that vanishes. The shell–like covering which our souls have excreted to house themselves, to make for themselves a shape distinct from others, is broken, and there is left of all these wrinkles and roughnesses a central oyster of perceptiveness, an enormous eye. How beautiful a street is in winter!
Virginia Woolf (Street Haunting)
Some oysters which Griselda had ordered, and which would seem to be beyond the reach of incompetence, we were, unfortunately, not able to sample as we had nothing in the house to open them with—an omission which was discovered only when the moment for eating them arrived.
Agatha Christie (The Murder at the Vicarage (Miss Marple, #1))
Don't be satisfied with stories, how things have gone with others. Unfold your own myth.” Listen! Clam up your mouth and be silent like an oyster shell, for that tongue of yours is the enemy of the soul, my friend. When the lips are silent, the heart has a hundred tongues.
John Balkh (Rumi Poetry: 101 Quotes Of Wisdom On Life, Love And Happiness (Sufi Poetry, Rumi Poetry, Inspirational Quotes, Sufism))
The main thing with people of that sort is never to let them think that their information can be of the slightest importance to you. If you do, they will instantly shut up like an oyster. If you listen to them under protest, as it were, you are very likely to get what you want.
Arthur Conan Doyle (The Sign of Four (Sherlock Holmes, #2))
Far beneath the rusty Baltimore dawn, stirrings in the maximum security ward. Down where it is never dark the tormented sense beginning day as oysters in a barrel open to their lost tide. God’s creatures who cried themselves to sleep stirred to cry again and the ravers cleared their throats.
Thomas Harris (The Silence of the Lambs (Hannibal Lecter, #2))
Often on the menu, oysters will be listed as “oysters on the half shell.” As opposed to what? “In a Kleenex?” Even the way you are supposed to eat an oyster indicates something counterintuitive. “Squeeze some lemon on it, a dab of hot sauce, throw the oyster down the back of your throat, take a shot of vodka, and try to forget you just ate snot from a rock.” That is not how you eat something. That is how you overdose on sleeping pills.
Jim Gaffigan (Food: A Love Story)
I want to get one thing straight right from the start: I am not a natural-born jock. I am about as intrinsically athletic as an oyster, with the innate grace and sporty prowess of a brick—a very cute oyster and a very intelligent brick, if I do say so myself, but oysterly and bricklike nevertheless.
Hanne Blank (The Unapologetic Fat Girl's Guide to Exercise and Other Incendiary Acts)
This is what history is: all those centuries of bodies, moving over these canals, twisting and blooming into life in these houses, these streets; all that flesh hungering, coming together, separating, continuing, accumulating, relinquishing, aging and breaking down. Bodies as tulips bent to the demands of light, colored into blossom, spent.
Mark Doty (Still Life with Oysters and Lemon: On Objects and Intimacy)
I like the Walrus best,' said Alice: `because you see he was a little sorry for the poor oysters.' `He ate more than the Carpenter, though,' said Tweedledee. `You see he held his handkerchief in front, so that the Carpenter couldn't count how many he took: contrariwise.' `That was mean!' Alice said indignantly. `Then I like the Carpenter best--if he didn't eat so many as the Walrus.' `But he ate as many as he could get,' said Tweedledum. This was a puzzler. After a pause, Alice began, `Well! They were both very unpleasant characters--
Lewis Carroll (Through the Looking-Glass and What Alice Found There (Alice's Adventures in Wonderland, #2))
Asher taps his fingers on his lips and I catch Amy licking her own as she eyes his mouth. "What exactly are Rocky Mountain Oysters?" he asks her. I restrain a laugh as Amy's face twists in confusion. "Well...I think they're kind of meat. I'm not sure what kind, but I like them." She presses the end of the pen against her chin. I shake my head at Asher. "You don't want those. Trust me.
Jessica Sorensen (Ember X (Death Collectors, #1))
Centuries ago, sailors on long voyages used to leave a pair of pigs on every deserted island. Or they'd leave a pair of goats. Either way, on any future visit, the island would be a source of meat. These islands, they were pristine. These were home to breeds of birds with no natural predators. Breeds of birds that lived nowhere else on earth. The plants there, without enemies they evolved without thorns or poisons. Without predators and enemies, these islands, they were paradise. The sailors, the next time they visited these islands, the only things still there would be herds of goats or pigs. Oyster is telling this story. The sailors called this "seeding meat." Oyster says, "Does this remind you of anything? Maybe the ol' Adam and Eve story?" Looking out the car window, he says, "You ever wonder when God's coming back with a lot of barbecue sauce?
Chuck Palahniuk (Lullaby)
Before that summer, I had many times heard long-winded Baptist preachers take ten minutes to pray over card tables of potato salad and fried chicken at church picnics, but the way those sweating, red-faced men sat around on stacked pallets of lumber gulping oysters taught me most of what I knew about simple gladness.
Mary Karr (The Liars' Club)
Joe Spork opens the door. The man departs. Joe turns to Polly to say something about how they’re obviously not going to Portsmouth, and finds an oyster knife balanced on his cheek, just under his eye. “Can we be very clear,” Polly Cradle murmurs, “that I am not your booby sidekick or your Bond girl? That I am an independent supervillain in my own right?” Joe swallows. “Yes, we can,” he says carefully. “There will therefore be no more ‘Say hello, Polly’?” “There will not.
Nick Harkaway (Angelmaker)
It was as if a blade had shucked his heart like an oyster and stolen the beauty within. He said his heart never started beating again, it just started working and I never understood the difference, not until I was much older anyway, when I learnt that coming back from the dead is not quite the same as coming back to life.
Sarah Winman (A Year of Marvellous Ways)
It's too hard to explain,' he said in a petulant mutter. 'If you want a new direction for your life,' she said, 'then for heaven's sake, just pick something out and do it. The world is your oyster, Colin. You're young, wealthy, and you're a *man*.' Penelope's voice turned bitter, resentful. 'You can do anything you want.' He scowled, which didn't surprise her. When people were convinced they had problems, the last thing they wanted to hear was a simple, straightforward solution. 'It's not that simple,' he said. 'It's exactly that simple.' ... She stood, smoothing out her skirts in an awkward, defensive gesture. 'Next time you want to complain about the trials and tribulations of universal adoration, try being an on-the-shelf spinster for a day. See how that feels and then let me know what you want to complain about.' And then, while Colin was still sprawled on the sofa, gaping at her as if she were some bizarre creature with three heads, twelve fingers, and a tail, she swept out of the room. It was, she thought as she descended the outer steps to Bruton Street, quite the most splendid exit of her existence.
Julia Quinn (Romancing Mister Bridgerton (Bridgertons, #4))
Now tell me, briefly, what the word ‘homosexuality’ means to you, in your own words." "Love flowers pearl, of delighted arms. Warm and water. Melting of vanilla wafer in the pants. Pink petal roses trembling overdew on the lips, soft and juicy fruit. No teeth. No nasty spit. Lips chewing oysters without grimy sand or whiskers. Pastry. Gingerbread. Warm, sweet bread. Cinnamon toast poetry. Justice equality higher wages. Independent angel song. It means I can do what I want.
Judy Grahn (Edward the Dyke and Other Poems)
I watch these kids. They don't seem entirely unhappy. A few times I've even circled the Free Clinic on foot, trying to catch a closer glimpse of these kids and their lives as they pop in and out of the clinic's Sputnik-era, gone-to-seed building--Lancaster's future trolls and Popeyes loitering out back having hushed paranoid conversations. And once I even went to have a look where they hang out in a big way, out in the delivery bay behind the now-closed Donut Hut, the delivery bay grotto out back with a floor spongy with pigeon shit, chewing gum, cigarette ashes, and throat oysters--dank and sunless. I went to visit this place once when all the druggies were away, having their druggy lives downtown doing their druggy things: yelling at parked cars and having conversations with amber lights. I visited this place and I was confused: confused and attracted. Who do these people think they are? How can they not care about the future or hot running water or clean sheets or cable TV? These people. And on the walls down at the delivery bay, do you know what they had written? Written in letters several hands high, letters built of IV needles attached to the cement with soiled bandages and wads of chewing gum? They had written the words WE LIKE IT.
Douglas Coupland
And something else, of course; there’s always more, deep in art’s pockets, far down in the chiaroscuro on which these foodstuffs rest: everything here has been transformed into feeling, as if by looking very hard at an object it suddenly comes that much closer to some realm where it isn’t a thing at all but something just on the edge of dissolving. Into what? Tears, gladness—you’ve felt like this before, haven’t you? Taken far inside.
Mark Doty (Still Life with Oysters and Lemon: On Objects and Intimacy)
It is an oyster, with small shells clinging to its humped back. Sprawling and uneven, it has the irregularity of something growing. It looks rather like the house of a big family, pushing out one addition after another to hold its teeming life - here a sleeping porch for the children, and there a veranda for the play-pen; here a garage for the extra car and there a shed for the bicycles. It amuses me because it seems so much like my life at the moment, like most women's lives in the middle years of marriage. It is untidy, spread out in all directions, heavily encrusted with accumulations....
Anne Morrow Lindbergh (Gift from the Sea)
It was strange to stand there in front of the mirror and see myself like I was my own best friend, a kid wanted to hang with forever. This was a boy I could travel to the seacoasts with, a boy I'd like to meet up with in foreign cities like Calcutta and London and Brazil, a boy I could trust who also had a good sense of humor and liked smoked oysters from a can and good weed and the occasional 40 ounces of malt. If I was going to be alone for the rest of my life this was the person I wanted to be alone with.
Russell Banks (Rule of the Bone)
Are oysters aphrodisiacs? For men, the smell of baked cinnamon buns had such a powerful impact on libido that it trumped the scents of a slew of various perfumes combined. Men were also strongly aroused by the scent of pumpkin pie, lavender, doughnuts, cheese pizza, buttered popcorn, vanilla and strawberries. The foods and smells that got women going more than anything else were licorice, banana nut bread, cucumbers, and candy.
Anahad O'Connor (Never Shower in a Thunderstorm)
Later, long after my grandfather was dead, I would regret that I could never be the kind of man that he was. Though I adored him as a child and found myself attracted to the safe protectorate of his soft, uncritical maleness, I never wholly appreciated him. I did not know how to cherish sanctity, and I had no way of honoring, of giving small voice to the praise of such natural innocence, such a generous simplicity. Now I know that a part of me would like to have traveled the world as he traveled it, a jester of burning faith, a fool and a forest prince brimming with the love of God. I would like to walk his southern world, thanking God for oysters and porpoises, praising God for birdsongs and sheet lightning, and seeing God reflected in pools of creekwater and the eyes of stray cats. I would like to have talked to yard dogs and tanagers as if they were my friends and fellow travelers along the sun-tortured highways, intoxicated with a love of God, swollen with charity like a rainbow, in the thoughtless mingling of its hues, connecting two distant fields in its glorious arc. I would like to have seen the world with eyes incapable of anything but wonder, and a tongue fluent only in praise.
Pat Conroy (The Prince of Tides)
It's funny. We meet hundreds of people. We stop to remember them sometimes and they're so far away and we're not a part of them anymore. Makes you realise how important it is to be a part of someone. And stay that way with them. And we have visions of going out into the open world and treating it as our oyster... but it takes a small, mindful moment to make us realise that doesn't really mean anything when you don't have someone to call home.
C. JoyBell C.
Linger now with me, thou Beauty, On the sharp archaic shore. Surely 'tis a wastrel's duty And the gods could ask no more. If thou lingerest when I linger, If thou tread'st the stones I tread, Thou wilt stay my spirit's hunger And dispel the dreams I dread. Come thou, love, my own, my only, Through the battlements of Groan; Lingering becomes so lonely When one lingers on one's own. I have lingered in the cloisters Of the Northern Wing at night, As the sky unclasped its oysters On the midnight pearls of light; For the long remorseless shadows Chilled me with exquisite fear. I have lingered in cold meadows Through a month of rain, my dear. Come, my Love, my sweet, my Only, Through the parapets of Groan. Lingering can be very lonely When one lingers on one's own. In dark alcoves I have lingered Conscious of dead dynasties; I have lingered in blue cellars And in hollow trunks of trees. Many a traveler through moonlight Passing by a winding stair Or a cold and crumbling archway Has been shocked to see me there. I have longed for thee, my Only, Hark! the footsteps of the Groan! Lingering is so very lonely When one lingers all alone. Will thou come with me, and linger? And discourse with me of those Secret things the mystic finger Points to, but will not disclose? When I'm all alone, my glory Always fades, because I find Being lonely drives the splendour Of my vision from my mind. Come, oh, come, my own! my Only! Through the Gormenghast of Groan. Lingering has become so lonely As I linger all alone!
Mervyn Peake (Titus Groan (Gormenghast, #1))
They thought of home, naturally, but there was no burning desire to be in civilization for its own sake. Worsley recorded: "Waking on a fine morning I feel a great longing for the smell of dewy wet grass and flowers of a Spring morning in New Zealand or England. One has very few other longings for civilization—good bread and butter, Munich beer, Coromandel rock oysters, apple pie and Devonshire cream are pleasant reminiscences rather than longings.
Alfred Lansing (Endurance: Shackleton's Incredible Voyage)
Shelly, what is this?" "What?" "This." She shook her fork. "A Rocky Mountain oyster." "Is it a shellfish?" "No, it's a testicle." "Oh, my God!" She dropped the fork as if it had suddenly zapped her. "Whose?" Dylan burst out laughing. "Not mine." "They came from the Rocking C. I bought 'em during castration season," Shelly told her. "You bought them? Oh, my God!" "Well," Shelly answered as if Hope were the crazy one, "they don't just give away free oysters, you know." "No, I don't know. I'm from California. We eat real food. We don't eat cow ball.
Rachel Gibson (True Confessions (Gospel, Idaho #1))
What the Motorcycle Said Br-r-r-am-m-m, rackerty-am-m, OM, AM: All-r-r-room, r-r-ram, ala-bas-ter- Am, the world’s my oyster. I hate plastic, wear it black and slick, hate hardhats, wear one on my head, That’s what the motorcycle said. Passed phonies in Fords, knockede down billboards, landed On the other side of The Gap, and Whee, bypassed history. When I was born (The Past), baby knew best. They shook when I bawled, took Freud’s path, threw away their wrath. R-r-rackety-am-m. Am. War, rhyme, soap, meat, marriage, the Phantom Jet are sh*t, and like that. Hate pompousness, punishment, patience, am into Love, hate middle-class moneymakers, live on Dad, that’s what the motorcycle said. Br-r-r-am-m-m. It’s Nowsville, man. Passed Oldies, Uglies, Straighties, Honkies. I’ll never be mean, tired, or unsexy. Passed cigarette suckers, souses, mother-fuckers, losers, went back to Nature and found how to get VD, stoned. Passed a cow, too fast to hear her moo, “I rolled our leaves of grass into one ball. I am the grassy All.” Br-r-r-am-m-m, rackety-am-m, OM, Am: All-gr-r-rin, oooohgah, gl-l-utton- Am, the world’s my smilebutton.
Mona Van Duyn
No sooner was I safely among the gravestones than a great feeling of warmth and calm contentment came sweeping over me. Life among the dead. This was where I was meant to be! What a revelation! And what a place to have it! I could succeed at whatever I chose. I could, for instance, become an undertaker. Or a pathologist. A detective, a gravedigger, a tombstone maker, or even the world's greatest murderer. Suddenly the world was my oyster—even if it was a dead one.
Alan Bradley (As Chimney Sweepers Come to Dust (Flavia de Luce, #7))
Everything that was not so must go. All the beautiful literary lies and flights of fancy must be shot in mid-air! So they lined them up against a library wall one Sunday morning thirty years ago, in 2006; they lined them up, St. Nicholas and the Headless Horseman and Snow White and Rumpelstiltskin and Mother Goose--oh, what a wailing!--and shot them down, and burned the paper castles and the fairy frogs and old kings and the people who lived happily ever after (for of course it was a fact that nobody lived happily ever after!), and Once Upon A Time became No More! And they spread the ashes of the Phantom Rickshaw with the rubble of the Land of Oz; they filleted the bones of Glinda the Good and Ozma and the shattered Polychrome in a spectroscope and served Jack Pumpkinhead with meringue at the Biologists' Ball! The Beanstalk died in a bramble of red tape! Sleeping Beauty awoke at the kiss of a scientist and expired at a fatal puncture of his syringe. And they made Alice drink something from a bottle which reduced her to a size where she could no longer cry 'Curiouser and curioser,' and they gave the Looking Glass one hammer blow to smash it and every Red King and Oyster away!
Ray Bradbury (The Martian Chronicles)
…I have fallen in love with a painting. Though that phrase doesn’t seem to suffice, not really—rather’s it that I have been drawn into the orbit of a painting, have allowed myself to be pulled into its sphere by casual attraction deepening to something more compelling. I have felt the energy and life of the painting’s will; I have been held there, instructed. And the overall effect, the result of looking and looking into it’s brimming surface as long as I could look, is love, by which I mean a sense of tenderness toward experience, of being held within an intimacy with the things of the world.
Mark Doty (Still Life with Oysters and Lemon: On Objects and Intimacy)
He says that woman speaks with nature. That she hears voices from under the earth. That wind blows in her ears and trees whisper to her. That the dead sing through her mouth and the cries of infants are clear to her. But for him this dialogue is over. He says he is not part of this world, that he was set on this world as a stranger. He sets himself apart from woman and nature ... We are the birds eggs. Birds eggs, flowers, butterflies, rabbits, cows, sheep; we are caterpillars; we are leaves of ivy and sprigs of wallflower. We are women. We rise from the wave. We are gazelle and doe, elephant and whale, lilies and roses and peach, we are air, we are flame, we are oyster and pearl, we are girls. We are woman and nature. And he says he cannot hear us speak. But we hear.
Susan Griffin (Woman and Nature: The Roaring Inside Her)
I told her about the best and the worst. The slow and sleepy places where weekdays rolled past like weekends and Mondays didn’t matter. Battered shacks perched on cliffs overlooking the endless, rumpled sea. Afternoons spent waiting on the docks, swinging my legs off a pier until boats rolled in with crates full of oysters and crayfish still gasping. Pulling fishhooks out of my feet because I never wore shoes, playing with other kids whose names I never knew. Those were the unforgettable summers. There were outback towns where you couldn’t see the roads for red dust, grids of streets with wandering dogs and children who ran wild and swam naked in creeks. I remembered climbing ancient trees that had a heartbeat if you pressed your ear to them. Boomboom-boomboom. Dreamy nights sleeping by the campfire and waking up covered in fine ash, as if I’d slept through a nuclear holocaust. We were wanderers, always with our faces to the sun.
Vikki Wakefield (Friday Brown)
Old-time ranchers planted cheatgrass because it would green up fast in the spring and provide early forage for grazing cattle,” Oyster says, nodding his head at the world outside. This first patch of cheatgrass was in southern British Columbia, Canada, in 1889. But fire spreads it. Every year, it dries to gunpowder, and now land that used to burn every ten years, it burns every year. And the cheatgrass recovers fast. Cheatgrass loves fire. But the native plants, the sagebrush and desert phlox, they don’t. And every year it burns, there’s more cheatgrass and less anything else. And the deer and antelope that depended on those other plants are gone now. So are the rabbits. So are the hawks and owls that ate the rabbits. The mice starve, so the snakes that ate the mice starve. Today, cheatgrass dominates the inland deserts from Canada to Nevada, covering an area over twice the size of the state of Nebraska and spreading by thousands of acres per year. The big irony is, even cattle hate cheatgrass, Oyster says. So the cows, they eat the rare native bunch grasses. What’s left of them... “When you think about it from a native plant perspective,” Oyster says, “Johnny Appleseed was a fucking biological terrorist.” Johnny Appleseed, he says, might as well be handing out smallpox.
Chuck Palahniuk (Lullaby)
An oyster has hardly any more reasoning power than a scientist has; and so it it is reasonably certain that this one jumped to the conclusion that the nineteen million years was a preparation for him; but that would be just like an oyster, which is the most conceited animal there is, except man. And anyway, this one could not know, at that early date, that he was only an incident in a scheme, and that there was some more in the scheme yet.
Mark Twain (What is Man?)
While they are busy showing off, digging other people’s graves, hanging themselves on a cross, running wild in the streets, cherries are quietly turning from green to red, oysters are suffering pearls, and children are catching rain in their mouths expecting the drops to be cold but they’re not; they are warm and smell like pineapple before they get heavier and heavier, so heavy and fast they can’t be caught one at a time. Poor swimmers head for shore while strong ones wait for lightning’s silver veins. Bottle-green clouds sweep in, pushing the rain inland where palm trees pretend to be shocked by the wind.
Toni Morrison (Love)
The banquet proceeded. The first course, a mince of olives, shrimp and onions baked in oyster shells with cheese and parsley was followed by a soup of tunny, cockles and winkles simmered in white wine with leeks and dill. Then, in order, came a service of broiled quail stuffed with morels, served on slices of good white bread, with side dishes of green peas; artichokes cooked in wine and butter, with a salad of garden greens; then tripes and sausages with pickled cabbage; then a noble saddle of venison glazed with cherry sauce and served with barley first simmered in broth, then fried with garlic and sage; then honey-cakes, nuts and oranges; and all the while the goblets flowed full with noble Voluspa and San Sue from Watershade, along with the tart green muscat wine of Dascinet.
Jack Vance (The Green Pearl (Lyonesse #2))
. . . [H]ad North America been a wilderness, undeveloped, without roads, and uncultivated, it might still be so, for the European colonists could not have survived. They appropriated what had already been created by Indigenous civilizations. They stole already cultivated farmland and the corn, vegetables, tobacco, and other crops domesticated over centuries, took control of the deer parks that had been cleared and maintained by Indigenous communities, used existing roads and water routes in order to move armies to conquer, and relied on captured Indigenous people to identify the locations of water, oyster beds, and medicinal herbs.
Roxanne Dunbar-Ortiz (An Indigenous Peoples' History of the United States (ReVisioning American History, #3))
Jane remembers those years, though, as if they had been [a movie]--in part because her friends...always talked about everything as if it was over ("Remember last night?"), while holding out the possibility that whatever happened could be rerun. Neil didn't have that sense of things. He thought people shouldn't romanticize ordinary life. "Our struggles, our little struggles," he would whisper, in bed, at night. Sometimes he or she would click on some of the flashlights and consider the ceiling, with the radiant swirls around the bright nuclei, the shadows like opened oysters glistening in brine. (In the '80s, the champagne was always waiting.)
Ann Beattie (Walks with Men)
You can say whatever you like to me. I'm your oyster." Before she could restrain herself, an appalled giggle escaped her. "Please don't say that. You're no such thing." "You can choose another word, if you like." Mr. Severin extended his arm to escort her downstairs. "But the fact is, if you ever need anything- any favor, any service, large or small- I'm the one to send for. No questions asked. No obligations attached. Will you remember that?" Cassandra hesitated before taking his arm. "I'll remember." As they proceeded to the first floor, she asked in bewilderment, "But why would you make such a promise?" "Haven't you ever liked someone or something right away, without knowing exactly why, but feeling sure you would discover the reasons later?" She couldn't help smiling at that, thinking, Yes, as a matter of fact. Just now. But it would be too forward to say so, and besides, it would be wrong to encourage him. "I would be glad to call you a friend, Mr. Severin. But I'm afraid marriage will never be a possibility. We don't suit. I could please you only in the most superficial ways." "I would be happy with that," he said. "Superficial relationships are my favorite kind." A regretful smile lingered at her lips. "Mr. Severin, you couldn't give me the life I've always dreamed of." "I hope your dream comes true, my lady. But if it doesn't, I could offer you some very satisfying substitutes." "Not if you're heart is frozen," Cassandra said. Mr. Severin grinned at that, and made no reply. But as they neared the last step, she heard his reflective, almost puzzled murmur. "Actually... I think it just thawed a little.
Lisa Kleypas (Chasing Cassandra (The Ravenels, #6))
The sun was shining on the sea, Shining with all his might: He did his very best to make The billows smooth and bright-- And this was odd, because it was The middle of the night. The moon was shining sulkily, Because she thought the sun Had got no business to be there After the day was done-- "It's very rude of him," she said, "To come and spoil the fun!" The sea was wet as wet could be, The sands were dry as dry. You could not see a cloud, because No cloud was in the sky: No birds were flying over head-- There were no birds to fly. The Walrus and the Carpenter Were walking close at hand; They wept like anything to see Such quantities of sand: "If this were only cleared away," They said, "it WOULD be grand!" "If seven maids with seven mops Swept it for half a year, Do you suppose," the Walrus said, "That they could get it clear?" "I doubt it," said the Carpenter, And shed a bitter tear. "O Oysters, come and walk with us!" The Walrus did beseech. "A pleasant walk, a pleasant talk, Along the briny beach: We cannot do with more than four, To give a hand to each." The eldest Oyster looked at him. But never a word he said: The eldest Oyster winked his eye, And shook his heavy head-- Meaning to say he did not choose To leave the oyster-bed. But four young oysters hurried up, All eager for the treat: Their coats were brushed, their faces washed, Their shoes were clean and neat-- And this was odd, because, you know, They hadn't any feet. Four other Oysters followed them, And yet another four; And thick and fast they came at last, And more, and more, and more-- All hopping through the frothy waves, And scrambling to the shore. The Walrus and the Carpenter Walked on a mile or so, And then they rested on a rock Conveniently low: And all the little Oysters stood And waited in a row. "The time has come," the Walrus said, "To talk of many things: Of shoes--and ships--and sealing-wax-- Of cabbages--and kings-- And why the sea is boiling hot-- And whether pigs have wings." "But wait a bit," the Oysters cried, "Before we have our chat; For some of us are out of breath, And all of us are fat!" "No hurry!" said the Carpenter. They thanked him much for that. "A loaf of bread," the Walrus said, "Is what we chiefly need: Pepper and vinegar besides Are very good indeed-- Now if you're ready Oysters dear, We can begin to feed." "But not on us!" the Oysters cried, Turning a little blue, "After such kindness, that would be A dismal thing to do!" "The night is fine," the Walrus said "Do you admire the view? "It was so kind of you to come! And you are very nice!" The Carpenter said nothing but "Cut us another slice: I wish you were not quite so deaf-- I've had to ask you twice!" "It seems a shame," the Walrus said, "To play them such a trick, After we've brought them out so far, And made them trot so quick!" The Carpenter said nothing but "The butter's spread too thick!" "I weep for you," the Walrus said. "I deeply sympathize." With sobs and tears he sorted out Those of the largest size. Holding his pocket handkerchief Before his streaming eyes. "O Oysters," said the Carpenter. "You've had a pleasant run! Shall we be trotting home again?" But answer came there none-- And that was scarcely odd, because They'd eaten every one.
Lewis Carroll (Through the Looking-Glass and What Alice Found There (Alice's Adventures in Wonderland, #2))
The city was a real city, shifty and sexual. I was lightly jostled by small herds of flushed young sailors looking for action on Forty-Second Street, with it rows of x-rated movie houses, brassy women, glittering souvenir shops, and hot-dog vendors. I wandered through Kino parlors and peered through the windows of the magnificent sprawling Grant’s Raw Bar filled with men in black coats scooping up piles of fresh oysters. The skyscrapers were beautiful. They did not seem like mere corporate shells. They were monuments to the arrogant yet philanthropic spirit of America. The character of each quadrant was invigorating and one felt the flux of its history. The old world and the emerging one served up in the brick and mortar of the artisan and the architects. I walked for hours from park to park. In Washington Square, one could still feel the characters of Henry James and the presence of the author himself … This open atmosphere was something I had not experienced, simple freedom that did not seem oppressive to anyone.
Patti Smith (Just Kids)
Hatred was easy. The permutations constant over the years: A stranger at a fair who palmed my crotch through my shorts. A man on the sidewalk who lunged at me, then laughed when I flinched. The night an older man took me to a fancy restaurant when I wasn't even old enough to like oysters. Not yet twenty. The owner joined our table, and so did a famous filmmaker. The men fell into a heated discussion with no entry point for me: I fidgeted with my heavy cloth napkin, drank water. Staring at the wall. "Eat your vegetables," the filmmaker suddenly snapped at me. "You're a growing girl." The filmmaker wanted me to know what I already knew: I had no power. He saw my need and used it against me.
Emma Cline (The Girls)
A rainbow is a storm’s masterpiece. A seed is a flower’s masterpiece. A rock is a diamond’s masterpiece. A butterfly is a caterpillar’s masterpiece. A flame is a spark’s masterpiece. A drop is an ocean’s masterpiece. A brick is a mansion’s masterpiece. A cell is a body’s masterpiece. A nest is a bird’s masterpiece. A flame is a spark’s masterpiece. A note is a symphony’s masterpiece. A flower is a garden’s masterpiece. Herbs are a plant’s masterpiece. Honey is a bee’s masterpiece. Silk is a spider’s masterpiece. Wool is a sheep’s masterpiece. Perfume is a flower’s masterpiece. Syrup is a tree’s masterpiece. Wine is a grape’s masterpiece. Fruit is a seed’s masterpiece. Pearls are an oyster’s masterpiece. Beauty is a sky’s masterpiece. Charm is a star’s masterpiece. Spring is nature’s masterpiece. Time is eternity’s masterpiece. Energy is light’s masterpiece. Heat is fire’s masterpiece. Knowledge is truth’s masterpiece. Thoughts are the mind’s masterpiece. Desires are the heart’s masterpiece. Experiences are the soul’s masterpiece. Intelligence is nature’s masterpiece. Enlightenment is wisdom’s masterpiece. The world is the universe’s masterpiece. Life is the Divine One’s masterpiece. Awareness is life’s masterpiece.
Matshona Dhliwayo
Mr. Severin, may I ask something personal?" "Of course." "Why did you offer to be my oyster?" A hot blush climbed her face. "Is it because I'm pretty?" His head lifted. "Partly," he admitted without a hint of shame. "But I also liked what you said- that you never nag or slam doors, and you're not looking for love. I'm not either." He paused, his vibrant gaze holding hers. "I think we would be a good match." "I didn't mean I don't want love," Cassandra protested. "I only meant I'd be willing to let love grow in time. To be clear, I want a husband who could also love me back." Mr. Severin took his time about replying. "What if you had a husband who, although not handsome, was not altogether bad-looking and happened to be very rich? What if he were kind and considerate, and gave you whatever you asked for- mansions, jewels, trips abroad, your own private yacht and luxury railway carriage? What if he were exceptionally good at..." He paused, appearing to think better of what he'd been about to say. "What if he were your protector and friend? Would it really matter so much if he couldn't love you?" "Why couldn't he?" Cassandra asked, intrigued and perturbed. "Is he missing a heart altogether?" "No, he has one, but it's never worked that way.
Lisa Kleypas (Chasing Cassandra (The Ravenels, #6))
There was a girl, and her uncle sold her, wrote Mr. Ibis in his perfect copperplate handwriting. That is the tale; the rest is detail. There are stories that are true, in which each individual’s tale is unique and tragic, and the worst of the tragedy is that we have heard it before, and we cannot allow ourselves to feel it too deeply. We build a shell around it like an oyster dealing with a painful particle of grit, coating it with smooth pearl layers in order to cope. This is how we walk and talk and function, day in, day out, immune to others’ pain and loss. If it were to touch us it would cripple us or make saints of us; but, for the most part, it does not touch us. We cannot allow it to. Tonight, as you eat, reflect if you can: there are children starving in the world, starving in numbers larger than the mind can easily hold, up in the big numbers where an error of a million here, a million there, can be forgiven. It may be uncomfortable for you to reflect upon this or it may not, but still, you will eat. There are accounts which, if we open our hearts to them, will cut us too deeply. Look—here is a good man, good by his own lights and the lights of his friends: he is faithful and true to his wife, he adores and lavishes attention on his little children, he cares about his country, he does his job punctiliously, as best he can. So, efficiently and good-naturedly, he exterminates Jews: he appreciates the music that plays in the background to pacify them; he advises the Jews not to forget their identification numbers as they go into the showers—many people, he tells them, forget their numbers, and take the wrong clothes, when they come out of the showers. This calms the Jews: there will be life, they assure themselves, after the showers. And they are wrong. Our man supervises the detail taking the bodies to the ovens; and if there is anything he feels bad about, it is that he still allows the gassing of vermin to affect him. Were he a truly good man, he knows, he would feel nothing but joy, as the earth is cleansed of its pests. Leave him; he cuts too deep. He is too close to us and it hurts.
Neil Gaiman (American Gods (American Gods, #1))
Because this painting has never been restored there is a heightened poignance to it somehow; it doesn’t have the feeling of unassailable permanence that paintings in museums do. There is a small crack in the lower left, and a little of the priming between the wooden panel and the oil emulsions of paint has been bared. A bit of abrasion shows, at the rim of a bowl of berries, evidence of time’s power even over this—which, paradoxically, only seems to increase its poetry, its deep resonance. If you could see the notes of a cello, when the bow draws slowly and deeply across its strings, and those resonant reverberations which of all instruments’ are nearest to the sound of the human voice emerge—no, the wrong verb, they seem to come into being all at once, to surround us, suddenly, with presence—if that were made visible, that would be the poetry of Osias Beert. But the still life resides in absolute silence. Portraits often seem pregnant with speech, or as if their subjects have just finished saying something, or will soon speak the thoughts that inform their faces, the thoughts we’re invited to read. Landscapes are full of presences, visible or unseen; soon nymphs or a stag or a band of hikers will make themselves heard. But no word will ever be spoken here, among the flowers and snails, the solid and dependable apples, this heap of rumpled books, this pewter plate on which a few opened oysters lie, giving up their silver. These are resolutely still, immutable, poised for a forward movement that will never occur. The brink upon which still life rests is the brink of time, the edge of something about to happen. Everything that we know crosses this lip, over and over, like water over the edge of a fall, as what might happen does, as any of the endless variations of what might come true does so, and things fall into being, tumble through the progression of existing in time. Painting creates silence. You could examine the objects themselves, the actors in a Dutch still life—this knobbed beaker, this pewter salver, this knife—and, lovely as all antique utilitarian objects are, they are not, would not be, poised on the edge these same things inhabit when they are represented. These things exist—if indeed they are still around at all—in time. It is the act of painting them that makes them perennially poised, an emergent truth about to be articulated, a word waiting to be spoken. Single word that has been forming all these years in the light on the knife’s pearl handle, in the drops of moisture on nearly translucent grapes: At the end of time, will that word be said?
Mark Doty (Still Life with Oysters and Lemon: On Objects and Intimacy)
The Everglades was the only place on earth where alligators (broad snout, fresh water, darker skin) and crocodiles (pointy snout, salt water, toothy grin) lived side by side. It was the only home of the Everglades mink, Okeechobee gourd, and Big Cypress fox squirrel. It had carnivorous plants, amphibious birds, oysters that grew on trees, cacti that grew in water, lizards that changed colors, and fish that changed genders. It had 1,100 species of trees and plants, 350 birds, and 52 varieties of porcelain-smooth, candy-striped tree snails. It had bottlenose dolphins, marsh rabbits, ghost orchids, moray eels, bald eagles, and countless other species that didn't seem to belong on the same continent, much less in the same ecosystem.
Michael Grunwald (The Swamp: The Everglades, Florida, and the Politics of Paradise)
All Carolina folk are crazy for mayonnaise, mayonnaise is as ambrosia to them, the food of their tarheeled gods. Mayonnaise comforts them, causes the vowels to slide more musically along their slow tongues, appeasing their grease-conditioned taste buds while transporting those buds to a place higher than lard could ever hope to fly. Yellow as summer sunlight, soft as young thighs, smooth as a Baptist preacher's rant, falsely innocent as a magician's handkerchief, mayonnaise will cloak a lettuce leaf, some shreds of cabbage, a few hunks of cold potato in the simplest splendor, restyling their dull character, making them lively and attractive again, granting them the capacity to delight the gullet if not the heart. Fried oysters, leftover roast, peanut butter: rare are the rations that fail to become instantly more scintillating from contact with this inanimate seductress, this goopy glory-monger, this alchemist in a jar. The mystery of mayonnaise-and others besides Dickie Goldwire have surely puzzled over this_is how egg yolks, vegetable oil, vinegar (wine's angry brother), salt, sugar (earth's primal grain-energy), lemon juice, water, and, naturally, a pinch of the ol' calcium disodium EDTA could be combined in such a way as to produce a condiment so versatile, satisfying, and outright majestic that mustard, ketchup, and their ilk must bow down before it (though, a at two bucks a jar, mayonnaise certainly doesn't put on airs)or else slink away in disgrace. Who but the French could have wrought this gastronomic miracle? Mayonnaise is France's gift to the New World's muddled palate, a boon that combines humanity's ancient instinctive craving for the cellular warmth of pure fat with the modern, romantic fondness for complex flavors: mayo (as the lazy call it) may appear mild and prosaic, but behind its creamy veil it fairly seethes with tangy disposition. Cholesterol aside, it projects the luster that we astro-orphans have identified with well-being ever since we fell from the stars.
Tom Robbins (Villa Incognito)
Still, this moment belongs to the two of them, Mom and this handsome stranger. He reaches the passenger side door and stares down at her with steely violet eyes-down at my mother who never cries, down at my mother who’s now bawling like a spanked child-his face contorted in a rainbow of so many emotions, some that I can’t even name. Then Grom the Triton king sinks to his knees in front of her, and a single tear spills down his face. “Nalia,” he whispers. And then my mother slaps him. It’s not the kind of slap you get for talking back. It’s not the kind of punch she dealt Galen and Toraf in our kitchen. It’s the kind of slap a woman gives a man when he’s hurt her deeply. And Grom accepts it with grace. “I looked for you,” she shouts, even though he’s inches from her. Slowly, as if in a show of peace, he takes the hand that slapped him and sandwiches it between his own. He seems to revel in the feel of her touch. His face is pure tenderness, his voice like a massage to the nerves. “And I looked for you.” “Your pulse was gone,” she insists. By now she chokes back sobs between words. She’s fighting for control. I’ve never seen my mother fight for control. “As was yours.” I realize Grom knows what not to say, what not to do to provoke her. He is the complete opposite of her, or maybe just a completion of her. Her eyes focus on his wrist, and tears slip down her face, leaving faint trails of mascara on her cheeks. He smiles and slowly pulls his hand away. I think he’s going to show her the bracelet he’s wearing, but instead he rips it off his wrist and holds it out for her inspection. From where I’m standing it looks like a single black ball tied to some sort of string. By my mom’s expression, this black ball has meaning. So much meaning that I think she’s forgotten to breathe. “My pearl,” she whispers. “I thought I’d lost it.” He encloses it in her hand. “This isn’t your pearl, love. That one was lost in the explosion with you. For almost an entire season, I scoured the oyster beds, looking for another one that would do. I don’t know why, but I thought maybe if I found another perfect pearl, I would somehow find you, too. When I found this though, it didn’t bring me the peace I’d hoped for. But I couldn’t bring myself to discard it. I’ve worn it on my wrist ever since.” This is all it takes for my mom to throw herself into his arms, bringing Rachel partially with her. Even so, it’s probably the most moving moment I’ve ever encountered in my eighteen years. Or at least it would be, if my mom weren’t clinging to a man who is not my dad.
Anna Banks (Of Triton (The Syrena Legacy, #2))
It needs scarcely to be told, with what feelings, on the eve of a Nantucket voyage, I regarded those marble tablets, and by the murky light of that darkened, doleful day read the fate of the whalemen who had gone before me. Yes, Ishmael, the same fate may be thine. But somehow I grew merry again. Delightful inducements to embark, fine chance for promotion, it seems—aye, a stove boat will make me an immortal by brevet. Yes, there is death in this business of whaling—a speechlessly quick chaotic bundling of a man into Eternity. But what then? Methinks we have hugely mistaken this matter of Life and Death. Methinks that what they call my shadow here on earth is my true substance. Methinks that in looking at things spiritual, we are too much like oysters observing the sun through the water, and thinking that thick water the thinnest of air. Methinks my body is but the lees of my better being. In fact take my body who will, take it I say, it is not me. And therefore three cheers for Nantucket; and come a stove boat and stove body when they will, for stave my soul, Jove himself cannot.
Herman Melville (Moby Dick, or the Whale)
— If love wants you; if you’ve been melted down to stars, you will love with lungs and gills, with warm blood and cold. With feathers and scales. Under the hot gloom of the forest canopy you’ll want to breathe with the spiral calls of birds, while your lashing tail still gropes for the waes. You’ll try to haul your weight from simple sea to gravity of land. Caught by the tide, in the snail-slip of your own path, for moments suffocating in both water and air. If love wants you, suddently your past is obsolete science. Old maps, disproved theories, a diorama. The moment our bodies are set to spring open. The immanence that reassembles matter passes through us then disperses into time and place: the spasm of fur stroked upright; shocked electrons. The mother who hears her child crying upstairs and suddenly feels her dress wet with milk. Among black branches, oyster-coloured fog tongues every corner of loneliness we never knew before we were loved there, the places left fallow when we’re born, waiting for experience to find its way into us. The night crossing, on deck in the dark car. On the beach wehre night reshaped your face. In the lava fields, carbon turned to carpet, moss like velvet spread over splintered forms. The instant spray freezes in air above the falls, a gasp of ice. We rise, hearing our names called home through salmon-blue dusk, the royal moon an escutcheon on the shield of sky. The current that passes through us, radio waves, electric lick. The billions of photons that pass through film emulsion every second, the single submicroscopic crystal struck that becomes the phograph. We look and suddenly the world looks back. A jagged tube of ions pins us to the sky. — But if, like starlings, we continue to navigate by the rear-view mirror of the moon; if we continue to reach both for salt and for the sweet white nibs of grass growing closest to earth; if, in the autumn bog red with sedge we’re also driving through the canyon at night, all around us the hidden glow of limestone erased by darkness; if still we sish we’d waited for morning, we will know ourselves nowhere. Not in the mirrors of waves or in the corrading stream, not in the wavering glass of an apartment building, not in the looming light of night lobbies or on the rainy deck. Not in the autumn kitchen or in the motel where we watched meteors from our bed while your slow film, the shutter open, turned stars to rain. We will become indigestible. Afraid of choking on fur and armour, animals will refuse the divided longings in our foreing blue flesh. — In your hands, all you’ve lost, all you’ve touched. In the angle of your head, every vow and broken vow. In your skin, every time you were disregarded, every time you were received. Sundered, drowsed. A seeded field, mossy cleft, tidal pool, milky stem. The branch that’s released when the bird lifts or lands. In a summer kitchen. On a white winter morning, sunlight across the bed.
Anne Michaels
Sweetheart," West murmured kindly, "listen to me. There's no need to worry. You'll either meet someone new, or you'll reconsider someone you didn't appreciate at first. Some men are an acquired taste. Like oysters, or Gorgonzola cheese." She let out a shuddering sigh. "Cousin West, if I haven't married by the time I'm twenty-five... and you're still a bachelor... would you be my oyster?" West looked at her blankly. "Let's agree to marry each other someday," she continued, "if no one else wants us. I would be a good wife. All I've ever dreamed of is having my own little family, and a happy home where everyone feels safe and welcome. You know I never nag or slam doors or sulk in corners. I just need someone to take care of. I want to matter to someone. Before you refuse-" "Lady Cassandra Ravenel," West interrupted, "that is the most idiotic idea anyone's come up with since Napoleon decided to invade Russia." Her gaze turned reproachful. "Why?" "Among a dizzying array of reasons, you're too young for me." "You're no older than Lord St. Vincent, and he just married my twin." "I'm older than him on the inside, by decades. My soul is a raisin. Take my word for it, you don't want to be my wife." "It would be better than being lonely." "What rubbish. 'Alone' and 'lonely' are entirely different things." West reached out to smooth back a dangling golden curl that had stuck against a drying tear track on her cheek. "Now, go bathe your face in cool water, and-" "I'll be your oyster," Tom broke in.
Lisa Kleypas (Chasing Cassandra (The Ravenels, #6))
January? The month is dumb. It is fraudulent. It does not cleanse itself. The hens lay blood-stained eggs. Do not lend your bread to anyone lest it nevermore rise. Do not eat lentils or your hair will fall out. Do not rely on February except when your cat has kittens, throbbing into the snow. Do not use knives and forks unless there is a thaw, like the yawn of a baby. The sun in this month begets a headache like an angel slapping you in the face. Earthquakes mean March. The dragon will move, and the earth will open like a wound. There will be great rain or snow so save some coal for your uncle. The sun of this month cures all. Therefore, old women say: Let the sun of March shine on my daughter, but let the sun of February shine on my daughter-in-law. However, if you go to a party dressed as the anti-Christ you will be frozen to death by morning. During the rainstorms of April the oyster rises from the sea and opens its shell — rain enters it — when it sinks the raindrops become the pearl. So take a picnic, open your body, and give birth to pearls. June and July? These are the months we call Boiling Water. There is sweat on the cat but the grape marries herself to the sun. Hesitate in August. Be shy. Let your toes tremble in their sandals. However, pick the grape and eat with confidence. The grape is the blood of God. Watch out when holding a knife or you will behead St. John the Baptist. Touch the Cross in September, knock on it three times and say aloud the name of the Lord. Put seven bowls of salt on the roof overnight and the next morning the damp one will foretell the month of rain. Do not faint in September or you will wake up in a dead city. If someone dies in October do not sweep the house for three days or the rest of you will go. Also do not step on a boy's head for the devil will enter your ears like music. November? Shave, whether you have hair or not. Hair is not good, nothing is allowed to grow, all is allowed to die. Because nothing grows you may be tempted to count the stars but beware, in November counting the stars gives you boils. Beware of tall people, they will go mad. Don't harm the turtle dove because he is a great shoe that has swallowed Christ's blood. December? On December fourth water spurts out of the mouse. Put herbs in its eyes and boil corn and put the corn away for the night so that the Lord may trample on it and bring you luck. For many days the Lord has been shut up in the oven. After that He is boiled, but He never dies, never dies.
Anne Sexton THE SERMON OF THE TWELVE ACKNOWLEDGMENTS
"If you prefer it, Your Excellency, a private room will be free directly: Prince Golitsin with a lady. Fresh oysters have come in." "Ah, oysters!" Stepan Arkadyevich became thoughtful. "How if we were to change our program, Levin?" he said, keeping his finger on the bill of fare. And his face expressed serious hesitation. "Are the oysters good? Mind, now!" "They're Flensburg, Your Excellency. We've no Ostend." "Flensburg will do -- but are they fresh?" "Only arrived yesterday." "Well, then, how if we were to begin with oysters, and so change the whole program? Eh?" "It's all the same to me. I should like cabbage soup and porridge better than anything; but of course there's nothing like that here." "Porridge a la Russe, Your Honor would like?" said the Tatar, bending down to Levin, like a nurse speaking to a child. "No, joking apart, whatever you choose is sure to be good. I've been skating, and I'm hungry. And don't imagine," he added, detecting a look of dissatisfaction on Oblonsky's face, "that I shan't appreciate your choice. I don't object to a good dinner." "I should hope so! After all, it's one of the pleasures of life," said Stepan Arkadyevich. "Well, then, my friend, you give us two -- or better say three-dozen oysters, clear soup with vegetables..." "Printaniere," prompted the Tatar. But Stepan Arkadyevich apparently did not care to allow him the satisfaction of giving the French names of the dishes. "With vegetables in it, you know. Then turbot with thick sauce, then... roast beef; and mind it's good. Yes, and capons, perhaps, and then stewed fruit." The Tatar, recollecting that it was Stepan Arkadyevich's way not to call the dishes by the names in the French bill of fare, did not repeat them after him, but could not resist rehearsing the whole menu to himself according to the bill: "Soupe printaniere, turbot sauce Beaumarchais, poulard a l'estragon, Macedoine de fruits..." and then instantly, as though worked by springs, laying down one bound bill of fare, he took up another, the list of wines, and submitted it to Stepan Arkadyevich. "What shall we drink?" "What you like, only not too much. Champagne," said Levin. "What! to start with? You're right though, I dare say. Do you like the white seal?" "Cachet blanc," prompted the Tatar. "Very well, then, give us that brand with the oysters, and then we'll see." "Yes, sir. And what table wine?" "You can give us Nuits. Oh, no -- better the classic Chablis." "Yes, sir. And your cheese, Your Excellency?" "Oh, yes, Parmesan. Or would you like another?" "No, it's all the same to me," said Levin, unable to suppress a smile.
Leo Tolstoy (Anna Karenina)
Across from me at the kitchen table, my mother smiles over red wine that she drinks out of a measuring glass. She says she doesn’t deprive herself, but I’ve learned to find nuance in every movement of her fork. In every crinkle in her brow as she offers me the uneaten pieces on her plate. I’ve realized she only eats dinner when I suggest it. I wonder what she does when I’m not there to do so. Maybe this is why my house feels bigger each time I return; it’s proportional. As she shrinks the space around her seems increasingly vast. She wanes while my father waxes. His stomach has grown round with wine, late nights, oysters, poetry. A new girlfriend who was overweight as a teenager, but my dad reports that now she’s “crazy about fruit." It was the same with his parents; as my grandmother became frail and angular her husband swelled to red round cheeks, rotund stomach and I wonder if my lineage is one of women shrinking making space for the entrance of men into their lives not knowing how to fill it back up once they leave. I have been taught accommodation. My brother never thinks before he speaks. I have been taught to filter. “How can anyone have a relationship to food?" He asks, laughing, as I eat the black bean soup I chose for its lack of carbs. I want to tell say: we come from difference, Jonas, you have been taught to grow out I have been taught to grow in you learned from our father how to emit, how to produce, to roll each thought off your tongue with confidence, you used to lose your voice every other week from shouting so much I learned to absorb I took lessons from our mother in creating space around myself I learned to read the knots in her forehead while the guys went out for oysters and I never meant to replicate her, but spend enough time sitting across from someone and you pick up their habits that’s why women in my family have been shrinking for decades. We all learned it from each other, the way each generation taught the next how to knit weaving silence in between the threads which I can still feel as I walk through this ever-growing house, skin itching, picking up all the habits my mother has unwittingly dropped like bits of crumpled paper from her pocket on her countless trips from bedroom to kitchen to bedroom again, Nights I hear her creep down to eat plain yogurt in the dark, a fugitive stealing calories to which she does not feel entitled. Deciding how many bites is too many How much space she deserves to occupy. Watching the struggle I either mimic or hate her, And I don’t want to do either anymore but the burden of this house has followed me across the country I asked five questions in genetics class today and all of them started with the word “sorry". I don’t know the requirements for the sociology major because I spent the entire meeting deciding whether or not I could have another piece of pizza a circular obsession I never wanted but inheritance is accidental still staring at me with wine-stained lips from across the kitchen table.
Lily Myers
Gaia giveth even as she taketh away. The warming of the global climate over the past century had melted permafrost and glaciers, shifted rainfall patterns, altered animal migratory routes, disrupted agriculture, drowned cities, and similarly necessitated a thousand thousand adjustments, recalibrations and hasty retreats. But humanity's unintentional experiment with the biosphere had also brought some benefits. Now we could grow oysters in New England. Six hundred years ago, oysters flourished as far north as the Hudson. Native Americans had accumulated vast middens of shells on the shores of what would become Manhattan. Then, prior to the industrial age, there was a small climate shift, and oysters vanished from those waters. Now, however, the tasty bivalves were back, their range extending almost to Maine. The commercial beds of the Cape Cod Archipelago produced shellfish as good as any from the heyday of Chesapeake Bay. Several large wikis maintained, regulated and harvested these beds, constituting a large share of the local economy. But as anyone might have predicted, wherever a natural resource existed, sprawling and hard of defense, poachers would be found.
Paul Di Filippo (Wikiworld)
Look, Bob, what part of this don't you understand, eh? It's a matter of style, okay? A proper brawl doesn't just happen. You don't just pile in, not anymore. Now, Oyster Dave here--put your helmet back on, Dave--will be the enemy in front, and Basalt, who, as we know, don't need a helmet, he'll be the enemy coming up behind you. Okay, it's well past knuckles time, let's say Gravy there has done his thing with the Bench Swipe, there's a bit of knife play, we've done the whole Chandelier Swing number, blah blah blah, then Second Chair--that's you, Bob--you step smartly between their Number Five man and a Bottler, swing the chair back over your head, like this--sorry, Pointy--and then swing it right back onto Number Five, bang, crash, and there's a cushy six points in your pocket. If they're playing a dwarf at Number Five, then a chair won't even slow him down, but don't fret, hang on to the bits that stay in your hand, pause one moment as he comes at you, and then belt him across both ears. They hate that, as Stronginthearm here will tell you. Another three points. It's probably going to be freestyle after that but I want all of you, including Mucky Mick and Crispo, to try for a Double Andrew when it gets down to the fist-fighting again. Remember? You back into each other, turn around to give the other guy a thumping, cue moment of humorous recognition, then link arms, swing round and see to the other fellow's attacker, foot or fist, it's your choice. Fifteen points right there if you get it to flow just right. Oh, and remember we'll have an Igor standing by, so if your arm gets taken off do pick it up and hit the other bugger with it, it gets a laugh and twenty points. On that subject, do remember what I said about getting everything tattooed with your name, all right? Igors do their best, but you'll be on your feet much quicker if you make life easier for him and, what's more, it's your feet you'll be on. Okay, positions, everyone, let's run through it again...
Terry Pratchett (Going Postal (Discworld, #33; Moist von Lipwig, #1))