Tell Me The Truth Quotes

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People think that intimacy is about sex. But intimacy is about truth. When you realize you can tell someone your truth, when you can show yourself to them, when you stand in front of them bare and their response is 'you're safe with me'- that's intimacy.
Taylor Jenkins Reid (The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo)
I want to be in a relationship where you telling me you love me is just a ceremonious validation of what you already show me.
Steve Maraboli (Life, the Truth, and Being Free)
Dreams like a podcast, Downloading truth in my ears. They tell me cool stuff." "Apollo?" I guess, because I figured nobody else could make a haiku that bad. He put his finger to his lips. "I'm incognito. Call me Fred." "A god named Fred?
Rick Riordan
give your daughters difficult names. give your daughters names that command the full use of tongue. my name makes you want to tell me the truth. my name doesn’t allow me to trust anyone that cannot pronounce it right.
Warsan Shire
Something inside Clary cracked and broke, and words came pouring out. 'What do you want me to tell you? The truth? The truth is that I love Simon like I should love you, and I wish he was my brother and you weren't, but I can't do anything about that and neither can you!
Cassandra Clare (City of Ashes (The Mortal Instruments, #2))
I don't want realism. I want magic! Yes, yes, magic! I try to give that to people. I misrepresent things to them. I don't tell the truth, I tell what ought to be the truth. And it that's sinful, then let me be damned for it!
Tennessee Williams (A Streetcar Named Desire)
People seldom realize that they tell lies with their lips and truths with their eyes all the time.
Tahereh Mafi (Destroy Me (Shatter Me, #1.5))
Tess, Tess, Tessa. Was there ever a more beautiful sound than your name? To speak it aloud makes my heart ring like a bell. Strange to imagine that, isn’t it – a heart ringing – but when you touch me that is what it is like: as if my heart is ringing in my chest and the sound shivers down my veins and splinters my bones with joy. Why have I written these words in this book? Because of you. You taught me to love this book where I had scorned it. When I read it for the second time, with an open mind and heart, I felt the most complete despair and envy of Sydney Carton. Yes, Sydney, for even if he had no hope that the woman he loved would love him, at least he could tell her of his love. At least he could do something to prove his passion, even if that thing was to die. I would have chosen death for a chance to tell you the truth, Tessa, if I could have been assured that death would be my own. And that is why I envied Sydney, for he was free. And now at last I am free, and I can finally tell you, without fear of danger to you, all that I feel in my heart. You are not the last dream of my soul. You are the first dream, the only dream I ever was unable to stop myself from dreaming. You are the first dream of my soul, and from that dream I hope will come all other dreams, a lifetime’s worth. With hope at least, Will Herondale
Cassandra Clare (Clockwork Prince (The Infernal Devices, #2))
Clary, Despite everything, I can't bear the thought of this ring being lost forever, any more then I can bear the thought of leaving you forever. And though I have no choice about the one, at least I can choose about the other. I'm leaving you our family ring because you have as much right to it as I do. I'm writing this watching the sun come up. You're asleep, dreams moving behind your restless eyelids. I wish I knew what you were thinking. I wish I could slip into your head and see the world the way you do. I wish I could see myself the way you do. But maybe I dont want to see that. Maybe it would make me feel even more than I already do that I'm perpetuating some kind of Great Lie on you, and I couldn't stand that. I belong to you. You could do anything you wanted with me and I would let you. You could ask anything of me and I'd break myself trying to make you happy. My heart tells me this is the best and greatest feeling I have ever had. But my mind knows the difference between wanting what you can't have and wanting what you shouldn't want. And I shouldn't want you. All night I've watched you sleeping, watched the moonlight come and go, casting its shadows across your face in black and white. I've never seen anything more beautiful. I think of the life we could have had if things were different, a life where this night is not a singular event, separate from everything else that's real, but every night. But things aren't different, and I can't look at you without feeling like I've tricked you into loving me. The truth no one is willing to say out loud is that no one has a shot against Valentine but me. I can get close to him like no one else can. I can pretend I want to join him and he'll believe me, up until that last moment where I end it all, one way or another. I have something of Sebastian's; I can track him to where my father's hiding, and that's what I'm going to do. So I lied to you last night. I said I just wanted one night with you. But I want every night with you. And that's why I have to slip out of your window now, like a coward. Because if I had to tell you this to your face, I couldn't make myself go. I don't blame you if you hate me, I wish you would. As long as I can still dream, I will dream of you. _Jace
Cassandra Clare (City of Glass (The Mortal Instruments, #3))
Do you know what people really want? Everyone, I mean. Everybody in the world is thinking: I wish there was just one other person I could really talk to, who could really understand me, who'd be kind to me. That's what people really want, if they're telling the truth.
Doris Lessing (The Golden Notebook)
Maybe it was the alcohol, maybe it was the truth, maybe I didn't want things to turn abstract, but I felt I should say it, because this was the moment to say it, because it suddenly dawned on me that this was why I had come, to tell him 'You are the only person I'd like to say goodbye to when I die, because only then will this thing I call my life make any sense. And if I should hear that you died, my life as I know it, the me who is speaking with you now, will cease to exist.
André Aciman (Call Me by Your Name)
Don’t tell me about your god with your words. Show me about your god with your actions.
Steve Maraboli (Life, the Truth, and Being Free)
Tell me something true, or tell me nothing at all.
Amal El-Mohtar (This is How You Lose the Time War)
That was horrible. Horrible. That poor little guy." Pex was unrepentant. "Yeah, well, he asked for it. Calling us ... all those things." But---buried alive! That's like in that horror movie. Y'know -- the one with all the horror." I think I saw that one. With all the words going up on the screen at the end?" Yeah, that was it. Tell you the truth, those words kinda ruined it for me.
Eoin Colfer (The Eternity Code (Artemis Fowl, #3))
But that's not what you said when she walked into the room," said Simon quietly. "You said, 'Why didn't you ever tell me I had a brother?'" "I know." Clary yanked a blade of grass out of the dirt, worrying it between her fingers. "I guess I can't help thinking that if I'd known the truth, I wouldn't have met Jace the way I did. I wouldn't have fallen in love with him." Simon was silent for a moment. "I don't think I've ever heard you say that before." "That I love him?" She laughed, but it sounded dreary even to her ears. "Seems useless to pretend like I don't, at this point. Maybe it doesn't matter. I probably won't ever see him again, anyway." "He'll come back." "Maybe." "He'll come back," Simon said again. "For you.
Cassandra Clare (City of Glass (The Mortal Instruments, #3))
I was going to die, sooner or later, whether or not I had even spoken myself. My silences had not protected me. Your silences will not protect you.... What are the words you do not yet have? What are the tyrannies you swallow day by day and attempt to make your own, until you will sicken and die of them, still in silence? We have been socialized to respect fear more than our own need for language." I began to ask each time: "What's the worst that could happen to me if I tell this truth?" Unlike women in other countries, our breaking silence is unlikely to have us jailed, "disappeared" or run off the road at night. Our speaking out will irritate some people, get us called bitchy or hypersensitive and disrupt some dinner parties. And then our speaking out will permit other women to speak, until laws are changed and lives are saved and the world is altered forever. Next time, ask: What's the worst that will happen? Then push yourself a little further than you dare. Once you start to speak, people will yell at you. They will interrupt you, put you down and suggest it's personal. And the world won't end. And the speaking will get easier and easier. And you will find you have fallen in love with your own vision, which you may never have realized you had. And you will lose some friends and lovers, and realize you don't miss them. And new ones will find you and cherish you. And you will still flirt and paint your nails, dress up and party, because, as I think Emma Goldman said, "If I can't dance, I don't want to be part of your revolution." And at last you'll know with surpassing certainty that only one thing is more frightening than speaking your truth. And that is not speaking.
Audre Lorde
I survived because I remained soft, because I listened, because I wrote. Because I huddled close to my truth, protected it like a tiny flame in a terrible storm. Hold up your head when the tears come, when you are mocked, insulted, questioned, threatened, when they tell you you are nothing, when your body is reduced to openings. The journey will be longer than you imagined, trauma will find you again and again. Do not become the ones who hurt you. Stay tender with your power. Never fight to injure, fight to uplift. Fight because you know that in this life, you deserve safety, joy, and freedom. Fight because it is your life. Not anyone else’s. I did it, I am here. Looking back, all the ones who doubted or hurt or nearly conquered me faded away, and I am the only one standing. So now, the time has come. I dust myself off, and go on.
Chanel Miller (Know My Name: A Memoir)
It's okay," he whispers. "You'll be okay." Truth is a jealous, vicious mistress that never ever sleeps, is what I don't tell him. I'll never be okay.
Tahereh Mafi (Shatter Me (Shatter Me, #1))
When someone refuses to tell me a certain piece of information, it only makes me that much more determined to find out the truth. I hate being ignorant. For me, a question unanswered is like a thorn in my side
Christopher Paolini (Brisingr (The Inheritance Cycle, #3))
Clap her in chains," says Randalin. Never have I so wished there was a way for me to show I was telling the truth. But there isn't. No oath of mine carries any weight. I feel a guard's hand close on my arm. Then Cardan's voice comes. "Do not touch her." A terrible silence follows. I wait for him to pronounce judgement on me. Whatever he commands will be done. His power is absolute. I don't even have the strength to fight back. "Whatever can you mean?" Randalin says. "She's-" "She is my wife," Cardan says, his voice carrying over the crowd. "The rightful High Queen of Elfhame. And most definitely not in exile.
Holly Black (The Queen of Nothing (The Folk of the Air, #3))
It seems to me I am trying to tell you a dream--making a vain attempt, because no relation of a dream can convey the dream-sensation, that commingling of absurdity, surprise, and bewilderment in a tremor of struggling revolt, that notion of being captured by the incredible which is of the very essence of dreams...No, it is impossible; it is impossible to convey the life-sensation of any given epoch of one's existence--that which makes its truth, its meaning--its subtle and penetrating essence. It is impossible. We live, as we dream-alone...
Joseph Conrad (Heart of Darkness)
He loves me, he loves me not, we are taught to say, as we tear the flower from its flowerness. To arrive at love, then, is to arrive through obliteration. Eviscerate me, we mean to say, and I'll tell you the truth.
Ocean Vuong (On Earth We're Briefly Gorgeous)
Tell yourself the truth! That you’ve wasted enough time, and that you have other dreams that will take courage to realize, so you don’t die a fucking pussy.
David Goggins (Can't Hurt Me: Master Your Mind and Defy the Odds)
…there is an idea of a Patrick Bateman, some kind of abstraction, but there is no real me, only an entity, something illusory, and though I can hide my cold gaze and you can shake my hand and feel flesh gripping yours and maybe you can even sense our lifestyles are probably comparable: I simply am not there. It is hard for me to make sense on any given level. Myself is fabricated, an aberration. I am a noncontingent human being. My personality is sketchy and unformed, my heartlessness goes deep and is persistent. My conscience, my pity, my hopes disappeared a long time ago (probably at Harvard) if they ever did exist. There are no more barriers to cross. All I have in common with the uncontrollable and the insane, the vicious and the evil, all the mayhem I have caused and my utter indifference toward it, I have now surpassed. I still, though, hold on to one single bleak truth: no one is safe, nothing is redeemed. Yet I am blameless. Each model of human behavior must be assumed to have some validity. Is evil something you are? Or is it something you do? My pain is constant and sharp and I do not hope for a better world for anyone. In fact, I want my pain to be inflicted on others. I want no one to escape. But even after admitting this—and I have countless times, in just about every act I’ve committed—and coming face-to-face with these truths, there is no catharsis. I gain no deeper knowledge about myself, no new understanding can be extracted from my telling. There has been no reason for me to tell you any of this. This confession has meant nothing….
Bret Easton Ellis (American Psycho)
Almost universally, the kind of performance we give on social media is positive. It’s more “Let me tell you how well things are going. Look how great I am.” It’s rarely the truth: “I’m scared. I’m struggling. I don’t know.
Ryan Holiday (Ego Is the Enemy)
Ladies and gentlemen of the class of '97: Wear sunscreen. If I could offer you only one tip for the future, sunscreen would be it. The long-term benefits of sunscreen have been proved by scientists, whereas the rest of my advice has no basis more reliable than my own meandering experience. I will dispense this advice now. Enjoy the power and beauty of your youth. Oh, never mind. You will not understand the power and beauty of your youth until they've faded. But trust me, in 20 years, you'll look back at photos of yourself and recall in a way you can't grasp now how much possibility lay before you and how fabulous you really looked. You are not as fat as you imagine. Don't worry about the future. Or worry, but know that worrying is as effective as trying to solve an algebra equation by chewing bubble gum. The real troubles in your life are apt to be things that never crossed your worried mind, the kind that blindside you at 4 pm on some idle Tuesday. Do one thing everyday that scares you. Sing. Don't be reckless with other people's hearts. Don't put up with people who are reckless with yours. Floss. Don't waste your time on jealousy. Sometimes you're ahead, sometimes you're behind. The race is long and, in the end, it's only with yourself. Remember compliments you receive. Forget the insults. If you succeed in doing this, tell me how. Keep your old love letters. Throw away your old bank statements. Stretch. Don't feel guilty if you don't know what you want to do with your life. The most interesting people I know didn't know at 22 what they wanted to do with their lives. Some of the most interesting 40-year-olds I know still don't. Get plenty of calcium. Be kind to your knees. You'll miss them when they're gone. Maybe you'll marry, maybe you won't. Maybe you'll have children, maybe you won't. Maybe you'll divorce at 40, maybe you'll dance the funky chicken on your 75th wedding anniversary. Whatever you do, don't congratulate yourself too much, or berate yourself either. Your choices are half chance. So are everybody else's. Enjoy your body. Use it every way you can. Don't be afraid of it or of what other people think of it. It's the greatest instrument you'll ever own. Dance, even if you have nowhere to do it but your living room. Read the directions, even if you don't follow them. Do not read beauty magazines. They will only make you feel ugly. Get to know your parents. You never know when they'll be gone for good. Be nice to your siblings. They're your best link to your past and the people most likely to stick with you in the future. Understand that friends come and go, but with a precious few you should hold on. Work hard to bridge the gaps in geography and lifestyle, because the older you get, the more you need the people who knew you when you were young. Live in New York City once, but leave before it makes you hard. Live in Northern California once, but leave before it makes you soft. Travel. Accept certain inalienable truths: Prices will rise. Politicians will philander. You, too, will get old. And when you do, you'll fantasize that when you were young, prices were reasonable, politicians were noble, and children respected their elders. Respect your elders. Don't expect anyone else to support you. Maybe you have a trust fund. Maybe you'll have a wealthy spouse. But you never know when either one might run out. Don't mess too much with your hair or by the time you're 40 it will look 85. Be careful whose advice you buy, but be patient with those who supply it. Advice is a form of nostalgia. Dispensing it is a way of fishing the past from the disposal, wiping it off, painting over the ugly parts and recycling it for more than it's worth. But trust me on the sunscreen.
Mary Schmich (Wear Sunscreen: A Primer for Real Life)
Do you know why books such as this are so important? Because they have quality. And what does the word quality mean? To me it means texture. This book has pores. It has features. This book can go under the microscope. You’d find life under the glass, streaming past in infinite profusion. The more pores, the more truthfully recorded details of life per square inch you can get on a sheet of paper, the more ‘literary’ you are. That’s my definition anyway. Telling detail. Fresh detail. The good writers touch life often. The mediocre ones run a quick hand over her. The bad ones rape her and leave her for the flies. So now you see why books are hated and feared? They show the pores in the face of life.
Ray Bradbury (Fahrenheit 451)
And I want to play hide-and-seek and give you my clothes and tell you I like your shoes and sit on the steps while you take a bath and massage your neck and kiss your feet and hold your hand and go for a meal and not mind when you eat my food and meet you at Rudy's and talk about the day and type up your letters and carry your boxes and laugh at your paranoia and give you tapes you don't listen to and watch great films and watch terrible films and complain about the radio and take pictures of you when you're sleeping and get up to fetch you coffee and bagels and Danish and go to Florent and drink coffee at midnight and have you steal my cigarettes and never be able to find a match and tell you about the tv programme I saw the night before and take you to the eye hospital and not laugh at your jokes and want you in the morning but let you sleep for a while and kiss your back and stroke your skin and tell you how much I love your hair your eyes your lips your neck your breasts your arse your and sit on the steps smoking till your neighbour comes home and sit on the steps smoking till you come home and worry when you're late and be amazed when you're early and give you sunflowers and go to your party and dance till I'm black and be sorry when I'm wrong and happy when you forgive me and look at your photos and wish I'd known you forever and hear your voice in my ear and feel your skin on my skin and get scared when you're angry and your eye has gone red and the other eye blue and your hair to the left and your face oriental and tell you you're gorgeous and hug you when you're anxious and hold you when you hurt and want you when I smell you and offend you when I touch you and whimper when I'm next to you and whimper when I'm not and dribble on your breast and smother you in the night and get cold when you take the blanket and hot when you don't and melt when you smile and dissolve when you laugh and not understand why you think I'm rejecting you when I'm not rejecting you and wonder how you could think I'd ever reject you and wonder who you are but accept you anyway and tell you about the tree angel enchanted forest boy who flew across the ocean because he loved you and write poems for you and wonder why you don't believe me and have a feeling so deep I can't find words for it and want to buy you a kitten I'd get jealous of because it would get more attention than me and keep you in bed when you have to go and cry like a baby when you finally do and get rid of the roaches and buy you presents you don't want and take them away again and ask you to marry me and you say no again but keep on asking because though you think I don't mean it I do always have from the first time I asked you and wander the city thinking it's empty without you and want what you want and think I'm losing myself but know I'm safe with you and tell you the worst of me and try to give you the best of me because you don't deserve any less and answer your questions when I'd rather not and tell you the truth when I really don't want to and try to be honest because I know you prefer it and think it's all over but hang on in for just ten more minutes before you throw me out of your life and forget who I am and try to get closer to you because it's beautiful learning to know you and well worth the effort and speak German to you badly and Hebrew to you worse and make love with you at three in the morning and somehow somehow somehow communicate some of the overwhelming undying overpowering unconditional all-encompassing heart-enriching mind-expanding on-going never-ending love I have for you.
Sarah Kane (Crave)
I know the resurrection is a fact, and Watergate proved it to me. How? Because 12 men testified they had seen Jesus raised from the dead, then they proclaimed that truth for 40 years, never once denying it. Every one was beaten, tortured, stoned and put in prison. They would not have endured that if it weren't true. Watergate embroiled 12 of the most powerful men in the world-and they couldn't keep a lie for three weeks. You're telling me 12 apostles could keep a lie for 40 years? Absolutely impossible.
Charles W. Colson
Let me tell you what I do know: I am more than one thing, and not all of those things are good. The truth is complicated. It’s two-toned, multi-vocal, bittersweet. I used to think that if I dug deep enough to discover something sad and ugly, I’d know it was something true. Now I’m trying to dig deeper. I didn’t want to write these pages until there were no hard feelings, no sharp ones. I do not have that luxury. I am sad and angry and I want everyone to be alive again. I want more landmarks, less landmines. I want to be grateful but I’m having a hard time with it.
Richard Siken
My daddy always told me to just do the best you knew how and tell the truth. He said there was nothin to set a man’s mind at ease like wakin up in the morning and not havin to decide who you were. And if you done somethin wrong just stand up and say you done it and say you’re sorry and get on with it. Don’t haul stuff around with you.
Cormac McCarthy (No Country for Old Men)
Grand illnesses are supposed to be life-clarifying. Instead, I knew I was going to die—but I’d known that before. My state of knowledge was the same, but my ability to make lunch plans had been shot to hell. The way forward would seem obvious, if only I knew how many months or years I had left. Tell me three months, I’d spend time with family. Tell me one year, I’d write a book. Give me ten years, I’d get back to treating diseases. The truth that you live one day at a time didn’t help: What was I supposed to do with that day?
Paul Kalanithi (When Breath Becomes Air)
Me, I say those are all great things to live for, if they're what happens to float your boat, but at the end of the day, there's got to be somebody you're doing it for. Just one person you're thinking of everytime you make a decision, everytime you tell the truth, or tell a lie, or anything. I've got mine. Do you?
Mira Grant (Feed (Newsflesh, #1))
You know, I do believe in magic. I was born and raised in a magic time, in a magic town, among magicians. Oh, most everybody else didn’t realize we lived in that web of magic, connected by silver filaments of chance and circumstance. But I knew it all along. When I was twelve years old, the world was my magic lantern, and by its green spirit glow I saw the past, the present and into the future. You probably did too; you just don’t recall it. See, this is my opinion: we all start out knowing magic. We are born with whirlwinds, forest fires, and comets inside us. We are born able to sing to birds and read the clouds and see our destiny in grains of sand. But then we get the magic educated right out of our souls. We get it churched out, spanked out, washed out, and combed out. We get put on the straight and narrow and told to be responsible. Told to act our age. Told to grow up, for God’s sake. And you know why we were told that? Because the people doing the telling were afraid of our wildness and youth, and because the magic we knew made them ashamed and sad of what they’d allowed to wither in themselves. After you go so far away from it, though, you can’t really get it back. You can have seconds of it. Just seconds of knowing and remembering. When people get weepy at movies, it’s because in that dark theater the golden pool of magic is touched, just briefly. Then they come out into the hard sun of logic and reason again and it dries up, and they’re left feeling a little heartsad and not knowing why. When a song stirs a memory, when motes of dust turning in a shaft of light takes your attention from the world, when you listen to a train passing on a track at night in the distance and wonder where it might be going, you step beyond who you are and where you are. For the briefest of instants, you have stepped into the magic realm. That’s what I believe. The truth of life is that every year we get farther away from the essence that is born within us. We get shouldered with burdens, some of them good, some of them not so good. Things happen to us. Loved ones die. People get in wrecks and get crippled. People lose their way, for one reason or another. It’s not hard to do, in this world of crazy mazes. Life itself does its best to take that memory of magic away from us. You don’t know it’s happening until one day you feel you’ve lost something but you’re not sure what it is. It’s like smiling at a pretty girl and she calls you “sir.” It just happens. These memories of who I was and where I lived are important to me. They make up a large part of who I’m going to be when my journey winds down. I need the memory of magic if I am ever going to conjure magic again. I need to know and remember, and I want to tell you.
Robert McCammon (Boy's Life)
Truth is a jealous, vicious mistress that never ever sleeps, is what I don’t tell him. I’ll never be okay.
Tahereh Mafi (Shatter Me (Shatter Me, #1))
There are many types of monsters that scare me: Monsters who cause trouble without showing themselves, monsters who abduct children, monsters who devour dreams, monsters who suck blood... and then, monsters who tell nothing but lies. Lying monsters are a real nuisance: They are much more cunning than others. They pose as humans even though they have no understanding of the human heart; they eat even though they've never experienced hunger; they study even though they have no interest in academics; they seek friendship even though they do not know how to love. If I were to encounter such monsters, I would likely be eaten by them... because in truth, I am that monster.
L Lawliet
I understand addiction now. I never did before, you know. How could a man (or a woman) do something so self-destructive, knowing that they’re hurting not only themselves, but the people they love? It seemed that it would be so incredibly easy for them to just not take that next drink. Just stop. It’s so simple, really. But as so often happens with me, my arrogance kept me from seeing the truth of the matter. I see it now though. Every day, I tell myself it will be the last. Every night, as I’m falling asleep in his bed, I tell myself that tomorrow I’ll book a flight to Paris, or Hawaii, or maybe New York. It doesn’t matter where I go, as long as it’s not here. I need to get away from Phoenix—away from him—before this goes even one step further. And then he touches me again, and my convictions disappear like smoke in the wind. This cannot end well. That’s the crux of the matter, Sweets. I’ve been down this road before—you know I have—and there’s only heartache at the end. There’s no happy ending waiting for me like there was for you and Matt. If I stay here with him, I will become restless and angry. It’s happening already, and I cannot stop it. I’m becoming bitter and terribly resentful. Before long, I will be intolerable, and eventually, he’ll leave me. But if I do what I have to do, what my very nature compels me to do, and move on, the end is no better. One way or another, he’ll be gone. Is it not wiser to end it now, Sweets, before it gets to that point? Is it not better to accept that this happiness I have is destined to self-destruct? Tomorrow I will leave. Tomorrow I will stop delaying the inevitable. Tomorrow I will quit lying to myself, and to him. Tomorrow. What about today, you ask? Today it’s already too late. He’ll be home soon, and I have dinner on the stove, and wine chilling in the fridge. And he will smile at me when he comes through the door, and I will pretend like this fragile, dangerous thing we have created between us can last forever. Just one last time, Sweets. Just one last fix. That’s all I need. And that is why I now understand addiction.
Marie Sexton (Strawberries for Dessert (Coda, #4; Strawberries for Dessert, #1))
Peeta,” I say lightly. “You said at the interview you’d had a crush on me forever. When did forever start?” “Oh, let’s see. I guess the first day of school. We were five. You had on a red plaid dress and your hair... it was in two braids instead of one. My father pointed you out when we were waiting to line up,” Peeta says. “Your father? Why?” I ask. “He said, ‘See that little girl? I wanted to marry her mother, but she ran off with a coal miner,’” Peeta says. “What? You’re making that up!” I exclaim. “No, true story,” Peeta says. “And I said, ‘A coal miner? Why did she want a coal miner if she could’ve had you?’ And he said, ‘Because when he sings... even the birds stop to listen.’” “That’s true. They do. I mean, they did,” I say. I’m stunned and surprisingly moved, thinking of the baker telling this to Peeta. It strikes me that my own reluctance to sing, my own dismissal of music might not really be that I think it’s a waste of time. It might be because it reminds me too much of my father. “So that day, in music assembly, the teacher asked who knew the valley song. Your hand shot right up in the air. She stood you up on a stool and had you sing it for us. And I swear, every bird outside the windows fell silent,” Peeta says. “Oh, please,” I say, laughing. “No, it happened. And right when your song ended, I knew—just like your mother—I was a goner,” Peeta says. “Then for the next eleven years, I tried to work up the nerve to talk to you.” “Without success,” I add. “Without success. So, in a way, my name being drawn in the reaping was a real piece of luck,” says Peeta. For a moment, I’m almost foolishly happy and then confusion sweeps over me. Because we’re supposed to be making up this stuff, playing at being in love not actually being in love. But Peeta’s story has a ring of truth to it. That part about my father and the birds. And I did sing the first day of school, although I don’t remember the song. And that red plaid dress... there was one, a hand-me-down to Prim that got washed to rags after my father’s death. It would explain another thing, too. Why Peeta took a beating to give me the bread on that awful hollow day. So, if those details are true... could it all be true? “You have a... remarkable memory,” I say haltingly. “I remember everything about you,” says Peeta, tucking a loose strand of hair behind my ear. “You’re the one who wasn’t paying attention.” “I am now,” I say. “Well, I don’t have much competition here,” he says. I want to draw away, to close those shutters again, but I know I can’t. It’s as if I can hear Haymitch whispering in my ear, “Say it! Say it!” I swallow hard and get the words out. “You don’t have much competition anywhere.” And this time, it’s me who leans in.
Suzanne Collins (The Hunger Games (The Hunger Games, #1))
Don't thank me for telling the truth when it would have been mercy to lie to you.
Marissa Meyer (Scarlet (The Lunar Chronicles, #2))
I know there's no way I can convince you this is not one of their tricks, but I don't care, I am me. My name is Valerie, I don't think I'll live much longer and I wanted to tell someone about my life. This is the only autobiography ill ever write, and god, I'm writing it on toilet paper. I was born in Nottingham in 1985, I don't remember much of those early years, but I do remember the rain. My grandmother owned a farm in Tuttlebrook, and she use to tell me that god was in the rain. I passed my 11th lesson into girl's grammar; it was at school that I met my first girlfriend, her name was Sara. It was her wrists. They were beautiful. I thought we would love each other forever. I remember our teacher telling us that is was an adolescent phase people outgrew. Sara did, I didn't. In 2002 I fell in love with a girl named Christina. That year I came out to my parents. I couldn't have done it without Chris holding my hand. My father wouldn't look at me, he told me to go and never come back. My mother said nothing. But I had only told them the truth, was that so selfish? Our integrity sells for so little, but it is all we really have. It is the very last inch of us, but within that inch, we are free. I'd always known what I wanted to do with my life, and in 2015 I starred in my first film, "The Salt Flats". It was the most important role of my life, not because of my career, but because that was how I met Ruth. The first time we kissed, I knew I never wanted to kiss any other lips but hers again. We moved to a small flat in London together. She grew Scarlet Carsons for me in our window box, and our place always smelled of roses. Those were there best years of my life. But America's war grew worse, and worse. And eventually came to London. After that there were no roses anymore. Not for anyone. I remember how the meaning of words began to change. How unfamiliar words like collateral and rendition became frightening. While things like Norse Fire and The Articles of Allegiance became powerful, I remember how different became dangerous. I still don't understand it, why they hate us so much. They took Ruth while she was out buying food. I've never cried so hard in my life. It wasn't long till they came for me.It seems strange that my life should end in such a terrible place, but for three years, I had roses, and apologized to no one. I shall die here. Every inch of me shall perish. Every inch, but one. An Inch, it is small and it is fragile, but it is the only thing the world worth having. We must never lose it or give it away. We must never let them take it from us. I hope that whoever you are, you escape this place. I hope that the world turns and that things get better. But what I hope most of all is that you understand what I mean when I tell you that even though I do not know you, and even though I may never meet you, laugh with you, cry with you, or kiss you. I love you. With all my heart, I love you. -Valerie
Alan Moore (V for Vendetta)
Was I sleeping, while the others suffered? Am I sleeping now? Tomorrow, when I wake, or think I do, what shall I say of today? That with Estragon my friend, at this place, until the fall of night, I waited for Godot? That Pozzo passed, with his carrier, and that he spoke to us? Probably. But in all that what truth will there be? He'll know nothing. He'll tell me about the blows he received and I'll give him a carrot. (pause) Astride of a grave and a difficult birth. Down in the hole, lingeringly, the grave digger puts on the forceps. We have time to grow old. The air is full of our cries. But habit is a great deadener. At me too someone is looking, of me too someone is saying, He is sleeping, he knows nothing, let him sleep on. (Pause.) I can't go on! (Pause.) What have I said?
Samuel Beckett
Van Houten, I’m a good person but a shitty writer. You’re a shitty person but a good writer. We’d make a good team. I don’t want to ask you any favors, but if you have time – and from what I saw, you have plenty – I was wondering if you could write a eulogy for Hazel. I’ve got notes and everything, but if you could just make it into a coherent whole or whatever? Or even just tell me what I should say differently. Here’s the thing about Hazel: Almost everyone is obsessed with leaving a mark upon the world. Bequeathing a legacy. Outlasting death. We all want to be remembered. I do, too. That’s what bothers me most, is being another unremembered casualty in the ancient and inglorious war against disease. I want to leave a mark. But Van Houten: The marks humans leave are too often scars. You build a hideous minimall or start a coup or try to become a rock star and you think, “They’ll remember me now,” but (a) they don’t remember you, and (b) all you leave behind are more scars. Your coup becomes a dictatorship. Your minimall becomes a lesion. (Okay, maybe I’m not such a shitty writer. But I can’t pull my ideas together, Van Houten. My thoughts are stars I can’t fathom into constellations.) We are like a bunch of dogs squirting on fire hydrants. We poison the groundwater with our toxic piss, marking everything MINE in a ridiculous attempt to survive our deaths. I can’t stop pissing on fire hydrants. I know it’s silly and useless – epically useless in my current state – but I am an animal like any other. Hazel is different. She walks lightly, old man. She walks lightly upon the earth. Hazel knows the truth: We’re as likely to hurt the universe as we are to help it, and we’re not likely to do either. People will say it’s sad that she leaves a lesser scar, that fewer remember her, that she was loved deeply but not widely. But it’s not sad, Van Houten. It’s triumphant. It’s heroic. Isn’t that the real heroism? Like the doctors say: First, do no harm. The real heroes anyway aren’t the people doing things; the real heroes are the people NOTICING things, paying attention. The guy who invented the smallpox vaccine didn’t actually invented anything. He just noticed that people with cowpox didn’t get smallpox. After my PET scan lit up, I snuck into the ICU and saw her while she was unconscious. I just walked in behind a nurse with a badge and I got to sit next to her for like ten minutes before I got caught. I really thought she was going to die, too. It was brutal: the incessant mechanized haranguing of intensive care. She had this dark cancer water dripping out of her chest. Eyes closed. Intubated. But her hand was still her hand, still warm and the nails painted this almost black dark blue and I just held her hand and tried to imagine the world without us and for about one second I was a good enough person to hope she died so she would never know that I was going, too. But then I wanted more time so we could fall in love. I got my wish, I suppose. I left my scar. A nurse guy came in and told me I had to leave, that visitors weren’t allowed, and I asked if she was doing okay, and the guy said, “She’s still taking on water.” A desert blessing, an ocean curse. What else? She is so beautiful. You don’t get tired of looking at her. You never worry if she is smarter than you: You know she is. She is funny without ever being mean. I love her. I am so lucky to love her, Van Houten. You don’t get to choose if you get hurt in this world, old man, but you do have some say in who hurts you. I like my choices. I hope she likes hers.
John Green (The Fault in Our Stars)
You are giving up instead of getting hard! Tell the truth about the real reasons for your limitations and you will turn that negativity, which is real, into jet fuel. Those odds stacked against you will become a damn runway!
David Goggins (Can't Hurt Me: Master Your Mind and Defy the Odds)
Adrian looked over at me again. “Who knows more about male weakness: you or me?” “Go on.” I refused to directly answer the question. “Get a new dress. One that shows a lot of skin. Short. Strapless. Maybe a push-up bra too.” He actually had the audacity to do a quick assessment of my chest. “Eh, maybe not. But definitely some high heels.” “Adrian,” I exclaimed. “You’ve seen how Alchemists dress. Do you think I can really wear something like that?” He was unconcerned. “You’ll make it work. You’ll change clothes or something. But I’m telling you, if you want to get a guy to do something that might be difficult, then the best way is to distract him so that he can’t devote his full brainpower to the consequences.” “You don’t have a lot of faith in your own gender.” “Hey, I’m telling you the truth. I’ve been distracted by sexy dresses a lot.” I didn’t really know if that was a valid argument, seeing as Adrian was distracted by a lot of things. Fondue. T-shirts. Kittens. “And so, what then? I show some skin, and the world is mine?” “That’ll help.” Amazingly, I could tell he was dead serious. “And you’ve gotta act confident the whole time, like it’s already a done deal. Then make sure when you’re actually asking for what you want that you tell him you’d be ‘so, so grateful.’ But don’t elaborate. His imagination will do half the work for you. ” I shook my head, glad we’d almost reached our destination. I didn’t know how much more I could listen to. “This is the most ridiculous advice I’ve ever heard. It’s also kind of sexist too, but I can’t decide who it offends more, men or women.” “Look, Sage. I don’t know much about chemistry or computer hacking or photosynthery, but this is something I’ve got a lot of experience with.” I think he meant photosynthesis, but I didn’t correct him. “Use my knowledge. Don’t let it go to waste.
Richelle Mead (The Indigo Spell (Bloodlines, #3))
Yes, I value emotions deeply. Call me sensitive, call me weak, call me outdated, call me anything you may, but tell me the truth, can you deny emotions give life to life. If Emotions are an integral part of Being Human, Why do people suppress feeling them ? Does the bruising scare them ? Than I wonder who is weak ?
The truth is, in order to heal we need to tell our stories and have them witnessed...The story itself becomes a vessel that holds us up, that sustains, that allows us to order our jumbled experiences into meaning. As I told my stories of fear, awakening, struggle, and transformation and had them received, heard, and validated by other women, I found healing. I also needed to hear other women's stories in order to see and embrace my own. Sometimes another woman's story becomes a mirror that shows me a self I haven't seen before. When I listen to her tell it, her experience quickens and clarifies my own. Her questions rouse mine. Her conflicts illumine my conflicts. Her resolutions call forth my hope. Her strengths summon my strengths. All of this can happen even when our stories and our lives are very different.
Sue Monk Kidd (The Dance of the Dissident Daughter: A Woman's Journey from Christian Tradition to the Sacred Feminine (Plus))
Why should we cherish “objectivity”, as if ideas were innocent, as if they don’t serve one interest or another? Surely, we want to be objective if that means telling the truth as we see it, not concealing information that may be embarrassing to our point of view. But we don’t want to be objective if it means pretending that ideas don’t play a part in the social struggles of our time, that we don’t take sides in those struggles. Indeed, it is impossible to be neutral. In a world already moving in certain directions, where wealth and power are already distributed in certain ways, neutrality means accepting the way things are now. It is a world of clashing interests – war against peace, nationalism against internationalism, equality against greed, and democracy against elitism – and it seems to me both impossible and undesirable to be neutral in those conflicts.
Howard Zinn (Declarations of Independence: Cross-Examining American Ideology)
Once upon a time,” I began. “There was a little boy born in a little town. He was perfect, or so his mother thought. But one thing was different about him. He had a gold screw in his belly button. Just the head of it peeping out. “Now his mother was simply glad he had all his fingers and toes to count with. But as the boy grew up he realized not everyone had screws in their belly buttons, let alone gold ones. He asked his mother what it was for, but she didn’t know. Next he asked his father, but his father didn’t know. He asked his grandparents, but they didn’t know either. “That settled it for a while, but it kept nagging him. Finally, when he was old enough, he packed a bag and set out, hoping he could find someone who knew the truth of it. “He went from place to place, asking everyone who claimed to know something about anything. He asked midwives and physickers, but they couldn’t make heads or tails of it. The boy asked arcanists, tinkers, and old hermits living in the woods, but no one had ever seen anything like it. “He went to ask the Cealdim merchants, thinking if anyone would know about gold, it would be them. But the Cealdim merchants didn’t know. He went to the arcanists at the University, thinking if anyone would know about screws and their workings, they would. But the arcanists didn’t know. The boy followed the road over the Stormwal to ask the witch women of the Tahl, but none of them could give him an answer. “Eventually he went to the King of Vint, the richest king in the world. But the king didn’t know. He went to the Emperor of Atur, but even with all his power, the emperor didn’t know. He went to each of the small kingdoms, one by one, but no one could tell him anything. “Finally the boy went to the High King of Modeg, the wisest of all the kings in the world. The high king looked closely at the head of the golden screw peeping from the boy’s belly button. Then the high king made a gesture, and his seneschal brought out a pillow of golden silk. On that pillow was a golden box. The high king took a golden key from around his neck, opened the box, and inside was a golden screwdriver. “The high king took the screwdriver and motioned the boy to come closer. Trembling with excitement, the boy did. Then the high king took the golden screwdriver and put it in the boy’s belly button.” I paused to take a long drink of water. I could feel my small audience leaning toward me. “Then the high king carefully turned the golden screw. Once: Nothing. Twice: Nothing. Then he turned it the third time, and the boy’s ass fell off.” There was a moment of stunned silence. “What?” Hespe asked incredulously. “His ass fell off.
Patrick Rothfuss (The Wise Man's Fear (The Kingkiller Chronicle, #2))
Do you really like to read that much?” she asked as we ambled our way casually in the dark toward the piazzetta. I looked at her as if she had asked me if I loved music, or bread and salted butter, or ripe fruit in the summertime. “Don’t get me wrong,” she said. “I like to read too. But I don’t tell anyone.” At last, I thought, someone who speaks the truth. I asked her why she didn’t tell anyone. “I don’t know…” This was more her way of asking for time to think or to hedge before answering, “People who read are hiders. They hide who they are. People who hide don’t always like who they are.” “Do you hide who you are?” “Sometimes. Don’t you?” “Do I? I suppose.
André Aciman (Call Me by Your Name)
They didn't have very far to fall--I knew just being a girl in the world handicapped your ability to believe yourself. Feelings seemed completely unreliable, like faulty gibberish scraped from a Ouija board. My childhood visits to the family doctor were stressful events for that reason. He'd ask me gentle questions: How was I feeling? How would I describe the pain? Was it more sharp or more spread out? I'd just look at him with desperation. I needed to be told, that was the whole point of going to the doctor. To take a test, be put through a machine that would comb my insides with radiated precision and tell me what the truth was.
Emma Cline (The Girls)
The whole time I pretend I have mental telepathy. And with my mind only, I’ll say — or think? — to the target, 'Don’t do it. Don’t go to that job you hate. Do something you love today. Ride a roller coaster. Swim in the ocean naked. Go to the airport and get on the next flight to anywhere just for the fun of it. Maybe stop a spinning globe with your finger and then plan a trip to that very spot; even if it’s in the middle of the ocean you can go by boat. Eat some type of ethnic food you’ve never even heard of. Stop a stranger and ask her to explain her greatest fears and her secret hopes and aspirations in detail and then tell her you care because she is a human being. Sit down on the sidewalk and make pictures with colorful chalk. Close your eyes and try to see the world with your nose—allow smells to be your vision. Catch up on your sleep. Call an old friend you haven’t seen in years. Roll up your pant legs and walk into the sea. See a foreign film. Feed squirrels. Do anything! Something! Because you start a revolution one decision at a time, with each breath you take. Just don’t go back to thatmiserable place you go every day. Show me it’s possible to be an adult and also be happy. Please. This is a free country. You don’t have to keep doing this if you don’t want to. You can do anything you want. Be anyone you want. That’s what they tell us at school, but if you keep getting on that train and going to the place you hate I’m going to start thinking the people at school are liars like the Nazis who told the Jews they were just being relocated to work factories. Don’t do that to us. Tell us the truth. If adulthood is working some death-camp job you hate for the rest of your life, divorcing your secretly criminal husband, being disappointed in your son, being stressed and miserable, and dating a poser and pretending he’s a hero when he’s really a lousy person and anyone can tell that just by shaking his slimy hand — if it doesn’t get any better, I need to know right now. Just tell me. Spare me from some awful fucking fate. Please.
Matthew Quick (Forgive Me, Leonard Peacock)
Dear Max - You looked so beautiful today. I'm going to remember what you looked like forever. ... And I hope you remember me the same way - clean, ha-ha. I'm glad our last time together was happy. But I'm leaving tonight, leaving the flock, and this time it's for good. I don't know if I'll ever see any of you again. The thing is, Max, that everyone is a little bit right. Added up all together, it makes this one big right. Dylan's a little bit right about how my being here might be putting the rest of you in danger. The threat might have been just about Dr. Hans, but we don't know that for sure. Angel is a little bit right about how splitting up the flock will help all of us survive. And the rest of the flock is a little bit right about how when you and I are together, we're focused on each other - we can't help it. The thing is, Maximum, I love you. I can't help but be focused on you when we're together. If you're in the room, I want to be next to you. If you're gone, I think about you. You're the one who I want to talk to. In a fight, I want you at my back. When we're together, the sun is shining. When we're apart, everything is in shades of gray. I hope you'll forgive me someday for turning our worlds into shades of gray - at least for a while. ... You're not at your best when you're focused on me. I mean, you're at your best Maxness, but not your best leaderness. I mostly need Maxness. The flock mostly needs leaderness. And Angel, if you're listening to this, it ain't you, sweetie. Not yet. ... At least for a couple more years, the flock needs a leader to survive, no matter how capable everyone thinks he or she is. The truth is that they do need a leader, and the truth is that you are the best leader. It's one of the things I love about you. But the more I thought about it, the more sure I got that this is the right thing to do. Maybe not for you, or for me, but for all of us together, our flock. Please don't try to find me. This is the hardest thing I've ever done in my life, besides wearing that suit today, and seeing you again will only make it harder. You'd ask me to come back, and I would, because I can't say no to you. But all the same problems would still be there, and I'd end up leaving again, and then we'd have to go through this all over again. Please make us only go through this once. ... I love you. I love your smile, your snarl, your grin, your face when you're sleeping. I love your hair streaming out behind you as we fly, with the sunlight making it shine, if it doesn't have too much mud or blood in it. I love seeing your wings spreading out, white and brown and tan and speckled, and the tiny, downy feathers right at the top of your shoulders. I love your eyes, whether they're cold or calculating or suspicious or laughing or warm, like when you look at me. ... You're the best warrior I know, the best leader. You're the most comforting mom we've ever had. You're the biggest goofball, the worst driver, and a truly lousy cook. You've kept us safe and provided for us, in good times and bad. You're my best friend, my first and only love, and the most beautiful girl I've ever seen, with wings or without. ... Tell you what, sweetie: If in twenty years we haven't expired yet, and the world is still more or less in one piece, I'll meet you at the top of that cliff where we first met the hawks and learned to fly with them. You know the one. Twenty years from today, if I'm alive, I'll be there, waiting for you. You can bet on it. Good-bye, my love. Fang P.S. Tell everyone I sure will miss them
James Patterson
It’s been rewarding to be this honest lately. I’m determined to stay this honest, as if lives depend on it, which I guess they sort of do. No one will die if I lie, but lives can grow and be fuller when I tell the truth.
Adam Silvera (History Is All You Left Me)
Gods know about fading. They know about being forgotten over centuries. The idea of ceasing to exist altogether terrifies us. In fact- well, Zeus would not like me sharing this information, and if you tell anyone, I will deny I ever said it-but the truth is we gods are a little in awe of you mortals. You spend your whole lives knowing you will die. No matter how many friends and relatives you have, your puny existences will quickly be forgotten. How do you cope with it? Why are you not running around constantly screaming and pulling your hair out? Your bravery, I must admit, is quite admirable.
Rick Riordan (The Hidden Oracle (The Trials of Apollo, #1))
Beyond the pursuit of meaning and beyond good and evil too, she says. See, it’s a daily chore tryin to do the right thing. Not because the right thing is hard to do—it ain’t. It’s just cause the right thing—well, the right thing’s got a way of eluding you. You give me a compass that tells good from bad, and boy I’ll be a soldier of the righteous truth. But them two things are a slippery business, and tellin them apart might as well be a blind man’s guess.
Alden Bell (The Reapers are the Angels (Reapers, #1))
Only after the words were spoken did she realize what she had said. "My sins are all your fault, Brodick, and if I have to go to purgatory, then by God, you're going with me. Ramsey, if you do not stop laughing,I swear I shall toss you over this cliff." "Do you love him, lass?" Father asked. "I do not," she answered emphatically. "It isn't a requirement," Laggan pointed out. "I should hope not," she cried. "But it would make your life easier," he countered. "Gillian, you will tell the truth," Brodick demanded. He grabbed hold of her hand. She tried to pull back, but he wouldn't let go. "I have told the truth. I don't love Ramsey, and if he doesn't stop laughing at me, the Sinclairs will soon be looking for a new laird." "Not Ramsey," Laggan shouted so he could be heard over Ramsey's laughter. "I'm asking you if you love Brodick." "Did you tell Father I love you? Who else did you tell?
Julie Garwood (Ransom (Highlands' Lairds, #2))
What do you believe in ?" "People's sufferings, and the fact that it is abominable. One should do everything to abolish it. To tell you the truth, nothing else seems to me of any importance.
Simone de Beauvoir
Let me tell you the truth about the world to which you so desperately want to return. It is a place of pain and suffering and grief. When you left it, cities were being attacked. Women and children were being blasted to pieces or burned alive by bombs dropped from planes flown by men with wives and children of their own. People were being dragged from their homes and shot in the street. Your world is tearing itself apart, and the most amusing thing of all is that it was little better before the war started. War merely gives people an excuse to indulge themselves further, to murder with impunity. There were wars before it, and there will be wars after it, and in between people will fight one another and hurt one another and maim one another and betray one another, because that is what they have always done. And even if you avoid warfare and violent death, little boy, what else do you think life has in store for you? You have already seen what it is capable of doing. It took your mother from you, drained her of health and beauty, and then cast her aside like the withered, rotten husk of a fruit. It will take others from you too, mark me. Those whom you care about--lovers, children--will fall by the wayside, and your love will not be enough to save them. Your health will fail you. You will become old and sick. Your limbs will ache, your eyesight will fade, and your skin will grow lined and aged. There will be pains deep within that no doctor will be able to cure. Diseases will find a warm, moist place inside you and there they will breed, spreading through your system, corrupting it cell by cell until you pray for the doctors to let you die, to put you out of your misery, but they will not. Instead you will linger on, with no one to hold your hand or soothe your brow, as Death comes and beckons you into his darkness. The life you left behind you is no life at all. Here, you can be king, and I will allow you to age with dignity and without pain, and when the time comes for you to die, I will send you gently to sleep and you will awaken in the paradise of your choosing, for each man dreams his own heaven.
John Connolly (The Book of Lost Things (The Book of Lost Things, #1))
What would it profit us, after all, even from a purely practical viewpoint, if we stripped life of all poetry, all dreams, all beautiful mysteries, all lies? What is truth, can you tell me that? You see, we only advanced by way of symbols, and we change the symbols as we progress.
Knut Hamsun (Mysteries)
He say, Celie, tell me the truth. You don't like me cause I'm a man? I blow my nose. take off they pants, I say, and men look like frogs to me. No matter how you kiss 'em, as far as I'm concern, frogs is what they stay.
Alice Walker (The Color Purple)
Truth for anyone is a very complex thing. For a writer, what you leave out says as much as those things you include. What lies beyond the margin of the text? The photographer frames the shot; writers frame their world. Mrs Winterson objected to what I had put in, but it seemed to me that what I had left out was the story’s silent twin. There are so many things that we can’t say, because they are too painful. We hope that the things we can say will soothe the rest, or appease it in some way. Stories are compensatory. The world is unfair, unjust, unknowable, out of control. When we tell a story we exercise control, but in such a way as to leave a gap, an opening. It is a version, but never the final one. And perhaps we hope that the silences will be heard by someone else, and the story can continue, can be retold. When we write we offer the silence as much as the story. Words are the part of silence that can be spoken. Mrs Winterson would have preferred it if I had been silent. Do you remember the story of Philomel who is raped and then has her tongue ripped out by the rapist so that she can never tell? I believe in fiction and the power of stories because that way we speak in tongues. We are not silenced. All of us, when in deep trauma, find we hesitate, we stammer; there are long pauses in our speech. The thing is stuck. We get our language back through the language of others. We can turn to the poem. We can open the book. Somebody has been there for us and deep-dived the words. I needed words because unhappy families are conspiracies of silence. The one who breaks the silence is never forgiven. He or she has to learn to forgive him or herself.
Jeanette Winterson (Why Be Happy When You Could Be Normal?)
To tell the truth, no one was looking down on me except myself.
Baek Se-hee (I Want to Die But I Want to Eat Tteokpokki)
Tell me it had nothing to do with me. That Sarah didn't end things because of this—this thing between us. That since I've been out of your life, she hasn't been reconsidering everything. Just tell me that, if that's the truth, Alex. Tell me I'm not the reason you're not married with kids right now, and everything else you wanted." He stares at me, face terse, eyes dark and cloudy. "Tell me," I beg, and he just stares at me, the silence of the room adding to the buzz inside my skull. Finally, he shakes his head. "Of course it's because of you.
Emily Henry (People We Meet on Vacation)
I love how simple this is for her. I love that her solution to everything is to tell the truth. I struggle with my identity and she tells me just to say what's true.
Nicola Yoon (The Sun Is Also a Star)
He sat watching the people go by, wondering how a thing of this sort could have come about, I must have let myself get mixed up in something horrible, he thought ... Probably she's the one who did it; I have no control of myself or anything that's happened. So now I'm waking up. I'm awake, he thought ... I've been destroyed and now that I'm awake all I can do is realize it ... The shock of getting up there and telling that account made me see. Mixture of lies and bits of truth. Woven together. Unable to see where each starts.
Philip K. Dick
I believe you. I can handle anything you need to tell me. You don’t need to protect me from the truth and I’m here to help you in any way I can. It’s not your fault. And you don’t deserve it.
Abby Jimenez (Part of Your World (Part of Your World, #1))
To tell you the truth, sleepless nights are as unusual for me as sumo wrestlers who look good in berets.
Haruki Murakami (The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle)
As the carriage rolled under the Institute’s gates, James saw his parents standing in the courtyard. “And where have you been?” Will demanded as James clambered out of the carriage. The others leaped down behind him, the girls, being in gear, needing no help to dismount. “You stole our carriage.” James wished he could tell his father the truth, but that would be breaking their sworn promise to Ragnor. “It’s only the second-best carriage,” James protested. “Remember when Papa stole Uncle Gabriel’s carriage? It’s a proud family tradition,” said Lucie, as the group of them approached the Institute steps. “I did not raise you to be horse thieves and scallywags,” said Will. “And I recall very clearly that I told you—” “Thank you for letting them borrow the carriage to come and get me,” said Cordelia. Her eyes were wide, and she looked entirely innocent. James felt an amused stab of surprise: she was an interestingly skilful liar. “I had very much wanted to come to the Institute and see what I could do to help.” Will softened immediately. “Of course. You are always welcome here, Cordelia.
Cassandra Clare (Chain of Gold (The Last Hours, #1))
It occurred to me that the act of writing had led me through a swirl of memories that might otherwise have ended in paralysis or worse. By telling stories, you objectify your own experience. You separate it from yourself. You pin down certain truths. You make up others. You start sometimes with an incident that truly happened, like the night in the shit field, and you carry it forward by inventing incidents that did not in fact occur but that nonetheless help to clarify and explain.
Tim O'Brien (The Things They Carried)
Call me a reliable narrator. Everything I tell you will be the truth, or, at least, the truth as I knew it to be at the time that I thought I knew it.
Benjamin Stevenson (Everyone in My Family Has Killed Someone (Ernest Cunningham, #1))
There’s no way to eliminate the ache of being human, but I do think we can diminish it. This starts when we challenge ourselves to become less afraid to share, more ready to listen—when the wholeness of your story adds to the wholeness of mine. I see a little of you. You see a little of me. We can’t know all of it, but we’re better off as familiars. Any time we grip hands with another soul and recognize some piece of the story they’re trying to tell, we are acknowledging and affirming two truths at once: We’re lonely and yet we’re not alone.
Michelle Obama (The Light We Carry: Overcoming in Uncertain Times)
No matter how many times I was questioned by the police, it never got easier. My nerves jumped into high gear automatically. They always made me feel like I was lying, even when I was telling the truth.
Lucinda Berry (The Perfect Child)
I remembered a time we were going through magazines. There was this one model who looked icy to the touch, in total control. I told you that, and you said, “That’s what makes it a good photograph. You think you know what’s going on in her head. But the truth? No matter how good a photograph is, you can never tell what’s going on in the person’s mind. There’s no way to get from here” (you pointed to the room) “to there” (you pointed to her head).
David Levithan (Every You, Every Me)
In vino veritas,” he tells me. In wine lies the truth.
Catharina Maura (The Wrong Bride (The Windsors, #1))
My heart tells me to stop right here, to offer quiet benediction and call it the end. But the truth won't allow it. Because there is no end, happy or otherwise. Nothing is fixed, nothing solved. the facts, such as they are, finally spin off into the void of things missing, the inconclusiveness of us. Who are we? Where do we go? The ambiguity may be dissatisfying, even irritating, but this is a love story. There is no tidiness. Blame it on the human heart. One way or another, it seems, we all perform vanishing tricks, effacing history, locking up our lives and slipping day by day into the graying shadows. Our whereabouts are uncertain. All secrets lead to the dark, and beyond teh dark there is only maybe.
Tim O'Brien (In the Lake of the Woods)
Today, I'm giving thanks to God for my failures, my successes, people who aren’t in my life anymore, those around me who speak life and tell me the truth, my health, and greater blessings still to come.
Germany Kent
thank god for friends that were family
Jasmin Kaur (If I Tell You the Truth (When You Ask Me Where I'm Going, 2))
Love is what remains when everything else is gone. This is what I should have told my children when we left Texas. What I will tell them tonight. Not that they will understand yet. How could they? I am forty years old, and I just learned this fundamental truth myself. Love. In the best of times, it is a dream. In the worst of times, a salvation. I am in love. There it is. I've written it down. Soon I will say it out loud. To him. I am in love. As crazy and ridiculous and implausible as it sounds, I am in love. And I am loved in return. And this-love-gives me the courage I need for today. The four winds have blown us here, people from all across the country, to the very edge of this great land, and now, at last, we make our stand, fight for what we know to be right. We fight for our American dream, that it will be possible again. Jack says that I am a warrior and, while I don't believe it, I know this: A warrior believes in an end she can't see and fights for it. A warrior never gives up. A warrior fights for those weaker than herself. It sounds like motherhood to me.
Kristin Hannah (The Four Winds)
I do not control what people think of me.” “But you do nothing to contradict what they say about you.” “You think words have meaning? They are just that – words. Words are used to spin stories and craft lies, and occasionally they are strung together to tell the truth.
Scarlett St. Clair (A Touch of Darkness (Hades x Persephone Saga, #1))
After writing the letter Sybil lost almost two days. "Coming to," she stumbled across what she had written just before she had dissociated and wrote to Dr. Wilbur as follows: It's just so hard to have to feel, believe, and admit that I do not have conscious control over my selves. It is so much more threatening to have something out of hand than to believe that at any moment I can stop (I started to say "This foolishness") any time I need to. When I wrote the previous letter, I had made up my mind I would show you how I could be very composed and cool and not need to ask you to listen to me nor to explain anything to me nor need any help. By telling you that all this about the multiple personalities was not really true I could show, or so I thought, that I did not need you. Well, it would be easier if it were put on. But the only ruse of which I'm guilty is to have pretended for so long before coming to you that nothing was wrong. Pretending that the personalities did not exist has now caused me to lose about two days.
Flora Rheta Schreiber (Sybil: The Classic True Story of a Woman Possessed by Sixteen Personalities)
If you saw humanity as I see it. There is very little brightness and warmth in the world for me. There are only four flames, in the whole world, that burn fiercely enough for me to feel something like the person I was. Your mother, your father, Lucie, and you. You love, and tremble, and burn. Do not let those who cannot see the truth tell you who you are. You are the flame that cannot be put out. You are the star that cannot be lost. You are who you have always been, and that is enough.
Cassandra Clare (Chain of Gold (The Last Hours, #1))
I feel very silly saying to you, Tell me all about yourself, but I wish you would. I want to get to know you." That's not how you get to know people. Don't you know? You can't talk it out, you've got to live into their lives, bad and good. You'll know me soon enough. What I want you to know.
Katherine Paterson
She wants me to take what magic I have left and blot every memory of this evening from their minds. To make them forget so that they can carry on as before. There will always be Cecilys, Marthas, and Elizabeths of the world - those who cannot bear the burden of truth. They will drink their tea. Weigh their words. Wear hats against the sun. Squeeze their minds into corsets, lest some errant thought should escape and ruin the smooth illusion they hold of themselves and the world as they like it. It is a luxury, this forgetting. No one will come to take away the things I wish I had not seen, the things I wish I did not know. I shall have to live with them. I wrench away from her grip. "Why should I?" I do it anyways. Once I am certain the girls are asleep, I creep into their rooms, one by one, and lay my hands across their furrowed brows, which wear the trouble of all they've witnessed. I watch while those brows ease into smooth, blank canvases beneath my fingers. It is a form of healing, and I am surprised by how much it heals me to do it. When the girls awake, they will remember as strange dream of magic and blood and curious creatures and perhaps a teacher they knew whose name will not spring to their lips. They might strain to remember it for a moment, but then they will tell themselves it was only a dream best forgotten. I have done what Mrs. Nightwing said I should do. But I do not take all their memories from them. I leave them with one small token of the evening: doubt. A feeling that perhaps there is something more. It is nothing more than a seed. Whether it shall grow into something more useful, I cannot say.
Libba Bray (The Sweet Far Thing (Gemma Doyle, #3))
And I don’t know, you’re at that age, if a bunch of grownups are telling you something or encouraging you, it just … it started to feel real. That Ben had molested me, because otherwise, why were all these adults trying to get me to say he had? And my parents would be all stern: It’s OK to tell the truth. It’s OK to tell the truth. And so you told the lie that they thought was the truth.
Gillian Flynn (Dark Places)
All right, Chris, you've given me a breather. I'm prepared for anything. And thank you for saying all of that, and for loving me, for you haven't gone unloved, or unadmired, yourself." I kissed him quickly on the lips, and told him to go on, to hit me with his knockout blow. "Really, Chris, I know you must have something perfectly awful to tell me-so out with it. Keep holding me as you tell me, and I can stand anything you have to say.
V.C. Andrews (Flowers in the Attic (Dollanganger, #1))
To build, you decide, I’m creating this. I’m not going to worry about it. I’m going to listen for my inner voice to tell me what to do next.
Erin Werley (One Truth, One Law: I Am, I Create)
It is so much more threatening to have something out of hand than to believe that at any moment I can stop (I started to say "This foolishness") any time I need to. When I wrote the previous letter, I had made up my mind I would show you how I could be very composed and cool and not need to ask you to listen to me nor to explain anything to me nor need any help. By telling you that all this about the multiple personalities was not really true but just put on, I could show, or so I thought, that I did not need you. Well, it would have been easier if it were put on. But the only ruse of which I'm guilty is to have pretended for so long before coming to you that nothing was wrong. Pretending that the personalities did not exist has now caused me to lose about two days. Three weeks later Sybil reaffirmed her belief in the existence of her other selves in a letter to Miss Updyke, the school nurse of undergraduate days.
Flora Rheta Schreiber (Sybil: The Classic True Story of a Woman Possessed by Sixteen Personalities)
I said no, Aoife." "You can't tell me what to do, Joe," I growled, feeling a combination of drunk and dizzy. "You don't own me." "Well, that's bad fucking luck on my account, because you sure as shit own me!" Drunk or not, his words hit me like a wrecking ball to the chest. Feeling the air whoosh from my lungs, I glared up at him, feeling a torrent of emotions crashing through me. "Why would you say that to me?" "Because it's the truth." "Since when?" "Since I was twelve.
Chloe Walsh (Redeeming 6 (Boys of Tommen, #4))
I want you to tell me the truth,” the dowager said. “Are you afraid to die?” Aomame needed no time at all to answer. Shaking her head, she said, “Not particularly—living as myself scares me more.
Haruki Murakami (1Q84 (Vintage International))
It was that summer, too, that I began the cutting, and was almost as devoted to it as to my newfound loveliness. I adored tending to myself, wiping a shallow red pool of my blood away with a damp washcloth to magically reveal, just above my naval: queasy. Applying alcohol with dabs of a cotton ball, wispy shreds sticking to the bloody lines of: perky. I had a dirty streak my senior year, which I later rectified. A few quick cuts and cunt becomes can't, cock turns into back, clit transforms to a very unlikely cat, the l and i turned into a teetering capital A. The last words I ever carved into myself, sixteen years after I started: vanish. Sometimes I can hear the words squabbling at each other across my body. Up on my shoulder, panty calling down to cherry on the inside of my right ankle. On the underside of a big toe, sew uttering muffled threats to baby, just under my left breast. I can quiet them down by thinking of vanish, always hushed and regal, lording over the other words from the safety of the nape of my neck. Also: At the center of my back, which was too difficult to reach, is a circle of perfect skin the size of a fist. Over the years I've made my own private jokes. You can really read me. Do you want me to spell it out for you? I've certainly given myself a life sentence. Funny, right? I can't stand to look myself without being completely covered. Someday I may visit a surgeon, see what can be done to smooth me, but now I couldn't bear the reaction. Instead I drink so I don't think too much about what I've done to my body and so I don't do any more. Yet most of the time that I'm awake, I want to cut. Not small words either. Equivocate. Inarticulate. Duplicitous. At my hospital back in Illinois they would not approve of this craving. For those who need a name, there's a gift basket of medical terms. All I know is that the cutting made me feel safe. It was proof. Thoughts and words, captured where I could see them and track them. The truth, stinging, on my skin, in a freakish shorthand. Tell me you're going to the doctor, and I'll want to cut worrisome on my arm. Say you've fallen in love and I buzz the outlines of tragic over my breast. I hadn't necessarily wanted to be cured. But I was out of places to write, slicing myself between my toes - bad, cry - like a junkie looking for one last vein. Vanish did it for me. I'd saved the neck, such a nice prime spot, for one final good cutting. Then I turned myself in.
Gillian Flynn (Sharp Objects)
this isn't a poem. instead it's an obituary for the girl i used to be the girl who belonged to everyone but herself the girl who swallowed her heart and bit her tongue the girl who would have never dared to run.
Jasmin Kaur (If I Tell You the Truth (When You Ask Me Where I'm Going, 2))
I have a feeling," Harry said finally, "that we're coming at this from the wrong angle. There's a tale I once heard about some students who came into a physics class, and the teacher showed them a large metal plate near a fire. She ordered them to feel the metal plate, and they felt that the metal nearer the fire was cooler, and the metal further away was warmer. And she said, write down your guess for why this happens. So some students wrote down 'because of how the metal conducts heat', and some students wrote down 'because of how the air moves', and no one said 'this just seems impossible', and the real answer was that before the students came into the room, the teacher turned the plate around." "Interesting," said Professor Quirrell. "That does sound similar. Is there a moral?" "That your strength as a rationalist is your ability to be more confused by fiction than by reality," said Harry. "If you're equally good at explaining any outcome, you have zero knowledge. The students thought they could use words like 'because of heat conduction' to explain anything, even a metal plate being cooler on the side nearer the fire. So they didn't notice how confused they were, and that meant they couldn't be more confused by falsehood than by truth. If you tell me that the centaurs were under the Imperius Curse, I still have the feeling of something being not quite right. I notice that I'm still confused even after hearing your explanation.
Eliezer Yudkowsky (Harry Potter and the Methods of Rationality)
That's what makes it a good photograph. You think you know what's going on in her head. but the truth? No matter how good a photograph is, you can never tell what's going on in the person's mind. There's no way to get from here to there.
David Levithan (Every You, Every Me)
What think you? Can beauty be taken from a man? If he could not touch, taste, smell, hear, see . . . what if all he knew was pain? Has that man had beauty taken from him?” “I . . .” What did this have to do with anything? “Does the pain change day by day?” “Let us say it does,” the messenger said. “Then beauty, to that person, would be the times when the pain lessens. Why are you telling me this story?” The messenger smiled. “To be human is to seek beauty, Shallan. Do not despair, do not end the hunt because thorns grow in your way. Tell me, what is the most beautiful thing you can imagine?” .... “I see,” the messenger said softly. “You do not yet understand the nature of lies. I had that trouble myself, long ago. The Shards here are very strict. You will have to see the truth, child, before you can expand upon it. Just as a man should know the law before he breaks it.
Brandon Sanderson (Words of Radiance (The Stormlight Archive, #2))
The year was 1987, but it might as well have been the Summer of Love: I was twenty, had hair down to my shoulders, and was dressed like an Indian rickshaw driver. For those charged with enforcing our nation’s drug laws, it would have been only prudent to subject my luggage to special scrutiny. Happily, I had nothing to hide. “Where are you coming from?” the officer asked, glancing skeptically at my backpack. “India, Nepal, Thailand…” I said. “Did you take any drugs while you were over there?” As it happens, I had. The temptation to lie was obvious—why speak to a customs officer about my recent drug use? But there was no real reason not to tell the truth, apart from the risk that it would lead to an even more thorough search of my luggage (and perhaps of my person) than had already commenced. “Yes,” I said. The officer stopped searching my bag and looked up. “Which drugs did you take? “I smoked pot a few times… And I tried opium in India.” “Opium?” “Yes.” “Opium or heroin? “It was opium.” “You don’t hear much about opium these days.” “I know. It was the first time I’d ever tried it.” “Are you carrying any drugs with you now?” “No.” The officer eyed me warily for a moment and then returned to searching my bag. Given the nature of our conversation, I reconciled myself to being there for a very long time. I was, therefore, as patient as a tree. Which was a good thing, because the officer was now examining my belongings as though any one item—a toothbrush, a book, a flashlight, a bit of nylon cord—might reveal the deepest secrets of the universe. “What is opium like?” he asked after a time. And I told him. In fact, over the next ten minutes, I told this lawman almost everything I knew about the use of mind-altering substances. Eventually he completed his search and closed my luggage. One thing was perfectly obvious at the end of our encounter: We both felt very good about it.
Sam Harris (Lying)
A cat met up with a big male rat in the attic and chased him into a corner. The rat, trembling, said, ‘Please don’t eat me, Mr. Cat. I have to go back to my family. I have hungry children waiting for me. Please let me go.’ The cat said, ‘Don’t worry, I won’t eat you. To tell you the truth, I can’t say this too loudly, but I’m a vegetarian. I don’t eat any meat. You were lucky to run into me.’ The rat said, ‘Oh, what a wonderful day! What a lucky rat I am to meet up with a vegetarian cat!’ But the very next second, the cat pounced on the rat, held him down with his claws, and sank his sharp teeth into the rat’s throat. With his last, painful breath, the rat asked him, ‘But Mr. Cat, didn’t you say you’re a vegetarian and don’t eat any meat? Were you lying to me?’ The cat licked his chops and said, ‘True, I don’t eat meat. That was no lie. I’m going to take you home in my mouth and trade you for lettuce.’ 
Haruki Murakami (1Q84 (Vintage International))
i gathered all my fears into a shield & tried too hard to protect you i didn't know how to apologize for loving you from the place where i was broken
Jasmin Kaur (If I Tell You the Truth (When You Ask Me Where I'm Going, 2))
everything i felt: two teaspoons of hope three tablespoons of fear six dashes of sadness and a monsoon of alone whatever this was i hoped she was the antidote.
Jasmin Kaur (If I Tell You the Truth (When You Ask Me Where I'm Going, 2))
That's what makes it a good photograph. You think you know what's going on in her head. But the truth? No matter how good a photograph is, you can never tell what's going on in the person's mind.
David Levithan (Every You, Every Me)
From now on I’ve decided that my priority is to commit to being a genuine ally to the women I know. I want them to feel safe in my company, to know that if they are ever the victim of any kind of sexual harassment or assault, I’ll always be there for them. I’ll always believe them, I’ll never for a moment doubt the truth of anything they tell me in confidence. I’ll never try to minimise what they’ve gone through, or impute any responsibility to them, even if – especially if – I know the attacker. I want to tell them they’ll never have reason to fear that I’ll find an excuse for him, or that I’ve set my heart on staying in touch with him. I refuse to be one of those people who thinks that domestic assault, for example, is a question of ‘perspective’, or a private matter between the two parties.
Pauline Harmange (I Hate Men)
I can't tell you how I felt when my father died. But I was able to write Song of Solomon and imagine, not him, and not his specific interior life, but the world that he inhabited and the private or interior life of the people in it. And I can't tell you how I felt reading to my grandmother while she was turning over and over in her bed (because she was dying, and she was not comfortable), but I could try to reconstruct the world that she lived in. And I have suspected, more often than not, that I know more than she did, that I know more than my grandfather and my great-grandmother did, but I also know that I'm no wiser than they were. And whenever I have tried earnestly to diminish their vision and prove to myself that I know more, and when I have tried to speculate on their interior life and match it up with my own, I have been overwhelmed every time by the richness of theirs compared to my own. Like Frederick Douglass talking about his grandmother, and James Baldwin talking about his father, and Simone de Beauvoir talking about her mother, these people are my access to me; they are my entrance into my own interior life. Which is why the images that float around them--the remains, so to speak, at hte archeological site--surface first, and they surface so vividly and so compellingly that I acknowledge them as my route to a reconstruction of a world, to an exploration of an interior life that was not written and to the revelation of a kind of truth.
Toni Morrison
No, Celia, tell the truth.” His grip tightened on her. One hand rose, sinking into her loose hair. “You spoke correctly the first time. You’re afraid. I tell you over and over again that I want you, but you generate excuses for me. I tell you that I refuse to worship my father’s image of respectability, but you make it a matter of safety. I will love you if I please. I will make you my altar, I’ll put you above everything else in this world, I’ll revel in every morsel you are made of. It’s simple—just tell me you don’t feel the same, and I’ll let you go. But I won’t accept anything else. I won’t accept your refusal on the make-believe grounds of our work.
Chloe Gong (Foul Heart Huntsman (Foul Lady Fortune, #2))
I put both of my hands on the desk. 'Just tell me why you hate me. Once and for all.' His long fingers smooth over the wood of Dain's desk. 'You really want honesty?' 'I am the one with the crossbow, not shooting you because you promised me answers. What do you think?' 'Very well.' He fixes me with a spiteful look. 'I hate you because your father loves you even though you're a human brat born to his unfaithful wife, while mine never cared for me, though I am a prince of Faerie. I hate you because you don't have a brother who beats you. And I hate you because Locke used you and your sister to make Nicasia cry after he stole her from me. Besides which, after the tournament, Balekin never failed to throw you in my face as the mortal who could best me.' ... 'Is that all?' I demand. 'Because it's ridiculous. You can't be jealous of me. You don't have to live at the sufferance of the same person who murdered your parents. You don't have to stay angry because if you don't, there's a bottomless well of fear ready to open up under you.' I stop speaking abruptly, surprised at myself. I said I wasn't going to be charmed, but I let him trick me in to opening up to him. As I think that, Cardan's smile turns in to a more familiar sneer. 'Oh, really? I don't know about being angry? I don't know about being afraid? You're not the one bargaining for your life.' 'That's really why you hate me?' I demand. 'Only that? There's no better reason?' For a moment, I think he's ignoring me, but then I realise he's not answering me because he can't lie and he doesn't want to tell the truth. 'Well?' I say, lifting the crossbow again, glad to have a reason to reassert my position as the person in charge. 'Tell me!' He leans in and closes his eyes. 'Most of all, I hate you because I think of you. Often. It's disgusting, and I can't stop.' I am shocked in to silence. 'Maybe you should shoot me after all,' he says, covering his face with one long-fingered hand.
Holly Black (The Cruel Prince (The Folk of the Air, #1))
I was standing in front of Worden’s market. I looked across the street to Charlie’s bar. I was thinking about going in to see if there might be a mid-day drunk sitting on a barstool to talk with to help me feel like I was back on the honest side of life. Maybe one who would tell stories about working in the woods or highway crews. Someone I could swap some truths with. But perhaps what would have helped me the most would have been a drug dealer. Someone I could have secretly observed working his trade, watched how the exchange of palmed cash for little baggies of heroin transpired. Maybe that would have given me clues about how the more experienced criminals moved and breathed and managed to spend their non-sleeping hours without collapsing.
Steve S. Saroff (Paper Targets: Art Can Be Murder)
could tell he was telling me the truth. It’s in the eyes. I can always tell. You know when you’re in the presence of evil, believe me. Billy recanted in the morning because he’d had time to think of all the consequences. He’s a coward. But he definitely did it.
Holly Jackson (As Good As Dead (A Good Girl's Guide to Murder, #3))
I should have done it a long time ago. When there were three bullets in the gun instead of two. I was stupid. We’ve been over all of this. I didnt bring myself to this. I was brought. And now I’m done. I thought about not even telling you. That would probably have been best. You have two bullets and then what? You cant protect us. You say you would die for us but what good is that? I’d take him with me if it werent for you. You know I would. It’s the right thing to do. You’re talking crazy. No, I’m speaking the truth. Sooner or later they will catch us and they will kill us. They will rape me. They’ll rape him. They are going to rape us and kill us and eat us and you wont face it. You’d rather wait for it to happen. But I cant. I cant. She sat there smoking a slender length of dried grapevine as if it were some rare cheroot. Holding it with a certain elegance, her other hand across her knees where she’d drawn them up. She watched him across the small flame. We used to talk about death, she said. We dont any more. Why is that? I dont know. It’s because it’s here. There’s nothing left to talk about. I wouldnt leave you. I dont care. It’s meaningless. You can think of me as a faithless slut if you like. I’ve taken a new lover. He can give me what you cannot. Death is not a lover. Oh yes he is.
Cormac McCarthy (The Road)
It is more probable they will tell you bad or wrong things about me. For many reasons: inferiority or imperfection. They might tell you I am dead. They might tell you it is not me. Question everything they tell you about me. Verify who they are. Do not believe anything about me. Try to find me to ask me.
Maria Karvouni
Letter Six To The One Who Left Too Soon Do you regret it? Does it hurt when you see my pictures? Does it hurt when you read my words? Do you wonder if my poems are about you? Do you sometimes write a long message to apologize, then delete it? Was it me? Was it you? Was it timing? Was I too hard to love? Were you too scared of loving again? It’s hard for me to believe that you’re a bad person because you were so kind to me. It’s hard for me to believe that it was all fake because it felt genuine. It’s hard for me to believe that you had that connection with everyone because I didn’t feel like you were pretending. I didn’t feel like you were acting. Was it so hard to ask me on a few more dates? Was it so hard to ask me a few more personal questions? Was it so hard to text me back to keep the conversation going? Was it so hard to like me? Why am I always the one who’s ready? The one who’s willing to stay, the one who’s willing to try against all odds and the only one who’s willing to fight? Why am I always the one dreaming and you’re the one waking me up? Why does it begin with smiles and end with tears? Why does it always have to be you against me? Why can’t it be us against the world? I hope one day you tell me why you left too soon. I hope one day you tell me the real reason. I hope one day you tell me the truth. Sometimes I wonder about you. What you’re doing, who you’re with, why you picked her and if you ever think about me. Sometimes I wonder if you will ever reach out, just to say you miss me, say sorry or just to hear my voice. And sometimes I wish you had stayed. I hope you learn how to stay. I hope you stop leaving. I hope you learn that staying is the only way to open your heart and stop running. I hope you learn that some people—like me—would’ve done anything for you to stay. I hope you learn that there’s so much more value in staying than leaving. I hope you learn that staying doesn’t always hurt.
Rania Naim (All the Letters I Should Have Sent)
It’s very simple: what are we gaining—excuse me if I’m repeating myself—what are we gaining by a pragmatism that robs our life of poetry, dreams, mysticism—are these all lies? What is truth? Can you tell me that? We can only struggle along by using symbols, and we change them as we alter our views. By the way, let’s not neglect our drinks.
Knut Hamsun (Mysteries)
When he drove me to school, we decided it would be a good day if we saw the blue heron in the algae-covered pond next to the road, so that if we didn’t see it, I’d be upset. Then, he began to lie. To tell me he’d seen it when he hadn’t, or to suppose that it had just taken off when we rounded the corner in the gray car that somehow still ran, and I would lie, too, for him. I’d say I saw it. Heard the whoosh of wings over us. That’s the real truth. What we told each other to help us through the day: the great blue heron was there, even when the pond dried up, or froze over; it was there because it had to be. Just now, I felt like I wanted to be alone for a long time, in a folding chair on the lawn with all my private agonies, but then I saw you and the way you’re hunching over your work like a puzzle, and I think even if I fail at everything, I still want to point out the heron like I was taught, still want to slow the car down to see the thing that makes it all better, the invisible gift, what we see when we stare long enough into nothing.
Ada Limon (Bright Dead Things)
I don’t think it’s merely willpower that makes you able to do something. The world isn’t that simple. To tell the truth, I don’t even think there’s that much correlation between my running every day and whether or not I have a strong will. I think I’ve been able to run for more than twenty years for a simple reason: It suits me. Or at least because I don’t find it all that painful. Human beings naturally continue doing things they like, and they don’t continue what they don’t like. Admittedly, something close to will does play a small part in that. But no matter how strong a will a person has, no matter how much he may hate to lose, if it’s an activity he doesn’t really care for, he won’t keep it up for long. Even if he did, it wouldn’t be good for him.
Haruki Murakami (What I Talk About When I Talk About Running)
Louder than words Why do we play with fire? Why do we run our finger through the flame? Why do we leave our hand on the stove Although we know we're in for some pain? Oh, why do we refuse to hang a light When the streets are dangerous? Why does it take an accident Before the truth gets through to us? Cages or wings Which do you prefer? Ask the birds Fear or love, baby? Don't say the answer Actions speak louder than words Why should we try to be our best When we can just get by and still gain? Why do we nod our heads Although we know The boss is wrong as rain? Why should we blaze a trail When the well worn path Seems safe and so inviting? How as we travel, can we See the dismay And keep from fighting? Cages or wings? Which do you prefer? Ask the birds Fear or love, baby? Don't say the answer Actions speak louder than words What does it take To wake up a generation? How can you make someone Take off and fly? If we don't wake up And shake up the nation We'll eat the dust of the world Wondering why, why Why do we stay with lovers Who we know, down deep Just aren't right? Why would we rather Put ourselves through Hell Than sleep alone at night? Why do we follow leaders who never lead? Why does it take catastrophe to start a revolution? If we're so free, tell me why? Someone tell me why So many people bleed? Cages or wings? Which do you prefer? Ask the birds Fear or love, baby? Don't say the answer Actions speak louder than Louder than, louder than Louder than, louder than Cages or wings? Which do you prefer? Ask the birds Fear or love baby? Don't say the answer Actions speak louder Louder than, louder than, ooh They speak louder Louder than, louder than, ooh Actions speak louder than
Jonathan Larson (tick, tick ... BOOM!)
skillful truth-telling” as opposed to “evasion,” in the sense that if this person could look at the whole conversation—let’s say she magically gets better again and can say, “Oh, I had Alzheimer’s. How did you deal with me when I kept asking about Dad?”—she would look at the transcript and say, “You know, that’s right. In my mind, he was someplace, and I just didn’t know where he was. What you said allowed me to get out of that loop.” That’s fine.
Sam Harris (Lying)
the act of writing had led me through a swirl of memories that might otherwise have ended in paralysis or worse. By telling stories, you objectify your own experience. You separate it from yourself. You pin down certain truths. You make up others. You start sometimes with an incident that truly happened, like the night in the shit field, and you carry it forward by inventing incidents that did not in fact occur but that nonetheless help to clarify and explain.
Tim O'Brien (The Things They Carried)
Minthe. Her name is a weighted feeling in my chest. I’ve been jealous before. Not like this. There is venom behind it. I wonder how long they’ve known each other. How did they meet? Do they go on dates? Does she own a hair comb identical to the one he gave me? I want to know, even though each answer would come with a sting. I could tell him the truth. Get her trouble. Maybe she would even get fired. …Would they break up? I don’t like feeling this way.
Rachel Smythe
Truth to tell, I have a very high opinion of fantasy. To me, it is actually the maternal creative side of the masculine spirit. When all is said and done, we are never proof against fantasy. It is true that there are worthless, inadequate, morbid and unsatisfying fantasies whose sterile nature will be quickly recognized by every person endowed with common-sense; but this of course proves nothing against the value of creative imagination. All the works of man have their origin in creative fantasy. What right have we then to depreciate imagination? In the ordinary, course of things, fantasy does not easily go astray; it is too deep for that, and too closely bound up with the tap-root of human and animal instinct. In surprising ways it always rights itself again. The creative activity of the imagination frees man from his bondage to "nothing but" and liberates in him the spirit of play. As Schiller says, man is completely human only when he is playing.
C.G. Jung
do not think that I underestimate the risk of this undertaking. It is as if one began to build a bridge out into space. Indeed, one might even allege—as has often been done—that in following this procedure the doctor and his patient are both together indulging in mere fantasies. And I do not consider this an objection, but quite to the point. I even make an effort to second the patient in his fantasies. Truth to tell, I have a very high opinion of fantasy. To me, it is actually the maternally creative side of the masculine spirit.
C.G. Jung (Modern Man in Search of a Soul)
I do not think that I underestimate the risk of this undertaking. It is as if one began to build a bridge out into space. Indeed, one might even allege—as has often been done—that in following this procedure the doctor and his patient are both together indulging in mere fantasies. And I do not consider this an objection, but quite to the point. I even make an effort to second the patient in his fantasies. Truth to tell, I have a very high opinion of fantasy. To me, it is actually the maternally creative side of the masculine spirit.
C.G. Jung (Modern Man in Search of a Soul)
Jesus said unto them [the Jews], If God were your Father, ye would love me: for I proceeded forth and came from God; neither came I of myself, but he sent me. Why do ye not understand my speech? Even because ye cannot hear my word. Ye are of your father the devil, and the lusts of your father ye will do. He was a murderer from the beginning, and abode not in the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he speaketh a lie, he speaketh of his own: for he is a liar, and the father of it. And because I tell you the truth, ye believe me not. (John 8:41–45)
Sam Harris (The End of Faith: Religion, Terror, and the Future of Reason)
I did not look on my work as therapy, and still don't. Yet when I received Normal Bowker's letter, it occurred to me that the act of writing had led me through a swirl of memories that might otherwise have ended in paralysis or worse. By telling stories, you objectify your own experience. You separate it from yourself. You pin down certain truths. You make up others. You start sometimes with an incident that truly happened, like the night in the shit field, and you carry it forward by inventing incidents that did not in fact occur but that nonetheless help to clarify and explain.
Tim O'Brien (The Things They Carried)
When He Must Hear What I Have to Tell Him Let every man be swift to hear, slow to speak, slow to wrath; for the wrath of man does not produce the righteousness of God. JAMES 1:19-20 OFTEN WE WIVES are tuned in to things our husbands are not. There are times when you see the truth about a situation and your husband doesn’t, and you know he needs to hear your input. For example, if you see your husband about to go over a cliff by making a wrong decision, you must absolutely say something to him. If there are words you need to speak to your husband with regard to what he is doing or not doing, pray first. Ask God to open his ears to hear, his mind to understand, and his heart to receive what you have to say. There is a type of man who refuses to listen to anything his wife says simply because she is a woman and he is convinced he knows better. Sometimes it hurts his ego to think she could be right and he might be wrong. Most men, however, have a healthy self-image and know it doesn’t minimize them to receive input from their wife. In fact, they welcome it. When Sarah realized something was happening in her family that wasn’t right, she knew she had to speak. When she told Abraham about it, what she said was something Abraham did not want to hear. He rejected the idea at first, but then God told him, “Do not let it be displeasing in your sight…whatever Sarah has said to you, listen to her voice…” (see Genesis 21:9-12). Don’t you love that? God told Abraham to listen to his wife because she was right. Pray that God will help your husband see when you are right as well. Ask God to open your husband’s heart to hear from Him, even as you are speaking. My Prayer to God LORD, I pray You will show me the truth about what I need to see regarding my husband. Help me to know if whatever I am sensing in my soul about him or his situation is really a revelation from You. If I am wrong, show me what is right. If I am right about this, prepare my husband’s heart to receive what I have to say to him. Open his ears to hear the truth and keep him from being resistant or defensive. Help me to speak to him with the patience, kindness, humility, and self-control that come from walking with You and being filled with Your Spirit. Sarah knew what was right, yet when she told Abraham about it he wasn’t in agreement with her. But You spoke to him, and he heard Your voice and saw the truth. I pray that whenever I must speak to my husband about a situation I am seeing in my spirit, You will speak the truth to him that he needs to hear. I am not concerned about whether he thinks I am right, but more concerned that he understands Your will for his life and our lives together, and that he does the right thing. Help my husband to be swift to hear Your voice, and slow to say no before he has even heard the matter through. Prepare his heart now and give me the words I need to say. If I should not say anything at all, show me that too. In Jesus’ name I pray.
Stormie Omartian (The Power of a Praying Wife Devotional)
That was the first time in my life that anyone had rejected me so completely.' Tsukuru said. 'And the ones who did it were the people I trusted the most, my four best friends in the world. I was so close to them that they had been like an extension of my own body. Searching for the reason, or correcting a misunderstanding, was beyond me. I was simply, and utterly, in shock. So much so that I thought I might never recover. It felt like something inside me snapped.' The bartender brought over the glass of wine and replenished the bowl of nuts. Once he'd left, Sara turned to Tsukuru. 'I've never experienced that myself, but I think I can imagine how stunned you must have been. I understand that you couldn't recover from it quickly. But still, after time had passed and the shock had worn off, wasn't there something you could have done? I mean, it was so unfair. Why didn't you challenge it? I don't see how you could stand it.' Tsukuru shook his head slightly. 'The next morning I made up some excuse to tell my family and took the bullet train back to Tokyo. I couldn't stand being in Nagoya for one more day. All I could think of was getting away from there.' 'If it had been me, I would have stayed there and not left until I got to the bottom of it,' Sara said. 'I wasn't strong enough for that.' Tsukuru said. 'You didn't want to find out the truth?' Tsukuru stared at his hands on the tabletop, careful choosing his words. 'I think I was afraid of pursuing it, of whatever facts might come of light. Of actually coming face-to-face with them. Whatever the truth was, I didn't think it would save me. I'm not sure why, but I was certain of it.' 'And you're certain of it now?' 'I don't know,' Tsukuru said. 'But I was then.' 'So you went back to Tokyo, stayed holed up in your apartment, closed your eyes, and covered up your ears.' 'You could say that, yes.
Haruki Murakami (Colorless Tsukuru Tazaki and His Years of Pilgrimage)
But to steal her love from me! Can it be that you really don’t understand? Do you think we mortals will find you gods easier to bear if you’re beautiful? I tell you that if that’s true we’ll find you a thousand times worse. For then (I know what beauty does) you’ll lure and entice. You’ll leave us nothing; nothing that’s worth our keeping or your taking. Those we love best—whoever’s most worth loving—those are the very ones you’ll pick out. Oh, I can see it happening, age after age, and growing worse and worse the more you reveal your beauty: the son turning his back on the mother and the bride on her groom, stolen away by this everlasting calling, calling, calling of the gods. Taken where we can’t follow. It would be far better for us if you were foul and ravening. We’d rather you drank their blood than stole their hearts. We’d rather they were ours and dead than yours and made immortal. But to steal her love from me, to make her see things I couldn’t see . . . oh, you’ll say (you’ve been whispering it to me these forty years) that I’d signs enough her palace was real, could have known the truth if I’d wanted. But how could I want to know it? Tell me that. The girl was mine. What right had you to steal her away into your dreadful heights?
C.S. Lewis (Till We Have Faces: A Myth Retold)
You just want her to be like you,' Dain argues. 'A cold-blooded killer. Soon you'll be telling her that it's all right, you get used to the killing.' I inhale a sharp breath. Xaden nails him with a glare. 'The blood in my veins is as warm as yours, Aetos, and if it's my job you want next year, then you'd better start understanding that you never get used to killing, but you do understand that it's necessary.' He turns back to me, his dark gaze boring into mine. 'This isn't primary school. This is war- and you heard me say it once before, but the ugly truth those not on the front lines choose to forget is there are always body bags in war.
Rebecca Yarros (Fourth Wing (The Empyrean, #1))
Live long enough,' I say, 'and you'll eventually see all sorts of things taken away from you, Kid. Toys, sandwiches, money, people, and eventually time. And the longer you go in life, the more you worry about something being taken away and you worry about going back to not having enough. We're all afraid of being poor, being injured, helpless, handicapped, all of the things that make us look at other people and say, "how bad. Somebody should do something to help them." The thing we're most afraid of is being the "them" in that equation.' I shake my head to push home the horror of what I'm saying to the Kid. I can't tell if he's understanding me or not. I can't tell if any of this is really getting through or if I just sound like another cynical heel. But this is the truth I know.
Jason Mott (Hell of a Book)
A cat met up with a big male rat in the attic and chased him into a corner. The rat, trembling, said, ‘Please don’t eat me, Mr. Cat. I have to go back to my family. I have hungry children waiting for me. Please let me go.’ The cat said, ‘Don’t worry, I won’t eat you. To tell you the truth, I can’t say this too loudly , but I’m a vegetarian. I don’t eat any meat. You were lucky to run into me.’ The rat said, ‘Oh, what a wonderful day! What a lucky rat I am to meet up with a vegetarian cat!’ But the very next second, the cat pounced on the rat, held him down with his claws, and sank his sharp teeth into the rat’s throat. With his last, painful breath, the rat asked him, ‘But Mr. Cat, didn’t you say you’re a vegetarian and don’t eat any meat? Were you lying to me?’ The cat licked his chops and said, ‘True, I don’t eat meat. That was no lie. I’m going to take you home in my mouth and trade you for lettuce.
Haruki Murakami (1Q84 (Vintage International))
There are too many people today who instead of feeling hurt are acting out their hurt; instead of acknowledging pain, they’re inflicting pain on others. Rather than risking feeling disappointed, they’re choosing to live disappointed. Emotional stoicism is not badassery. Blustery posturing is not badassery. Swagger is not badassery. Perfection is about the furthest thing in the world from badassery. To me the real badass is the person who says, “Our family is really hurting. We could use your support.” And the man who tells his son, “It’s okay to be sad. We all get sad. We just need to talk about it.” And the woman who says, “Our team dropped the ball. We need to stop blaming each other and have some tough conversations about what happened so we can fix it and move forward.” People who wade into discomfort and vulnerability and tell the truth about their stories are the real badasses. Daring is essential to solve the problems in the world
Brené Brown (Rising Strong: The Reckoning. The Rumble. The Revolution.)
If, for instance, I determine the weight of each stone in a bed of pebbles and get an average weight of 145 grams, this tells me very little about the real nature of the pebbles. Anyone who thought, on the basis of these findings, that he could pick up a pebbles of 145 grams at the first try would be in for a serious disappointment. Indeed, it might well happen that however long he searched he would not find a single pebble weighing exactly 145 grams. The statistical method shows the facts in the light of the ideal average but does not give us a picture of their empirical reality. While reflecting an indisputable aspect of reality, it can falsify the actual truth in a most misleading way. This is particularly true of theories which are based on statistics. The distinctive thing about real facts, however, is their could say that the real picture consists of nothing but exceptions to the rule, and that, in consequence, absolute reality has predominantly the characteristic of *irregularity* (The Undiscovered Self)
C.G. Jung
I believe that I have not been fair to you and that, as a result, I must have led you around in circles and hurt you deeply. In doing so, however, I have led myself around in circles and hurt myself just as deeply. I say this not as an excuse or a means of self-justification but because it is true. If I have left a wound inside you, it is not just your wound but mine as well. So please try not to hate me. I am a flawed human being - a far more flawed being than you realize. Which is precisely why I do not want you to hate me. Because if you were to do that, I would really go to pieces. I can't do what you can do: I can't slip inside my shell and wait for things to pass. I don't know for a fact that you are really like that, but sometimes you give me that impression. I often envy that in you, which may be why I led you around in circles so much. This may be an over-analytical way of looking at things. Don't you agree? The therapy they perform here is certainly not over-analytical, but when you are under treatment for several months the way I am here, like it or not, you become more or less analytical. "This was caused by that, and that means this, because of which such-and-such." Like that. I can't tell whether this kind of analysis is trying to simplify the world or complicate it. In any case, I myself feel that I am far closer to recovery than I once was, and people here tell me this is true. This is the first time in a long while I have been able to sit down and calmly write a letter. The one I wrote you in July was something I had to squeeze out of me (though, to tell the truth, I don't remember what I wrote - was it terrible?), but this time I am very calm. How wonderful it is to be able to write someone a letter! To feel like conveying your thoughts to a person, to sit at your desk and pick up a pen, to put your thoughts into words like this is truly marvellous. Of course, once I do put them to words, I find I can only express a fraction of what I want to say, but that's all right. I'm happy just to be able to feel I want to write to someone. And so I am writing to you.
Haruki Murakami (Norwegian Wood)
Jesus said unto them [the Jews], If God were your Father, ye would love me: for I proceeded forth and came from God; neither came I of myself, but he sent me. Why do ye not understand my speech? Even because ye cannot hear my word. Ye are of your father the devil, and the lusts of your father ye will do. He was a murderer from the beginning, and abode not in the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he speaketh a lie, he speaketh of his own: for he is a liar, and the father of it. And because I tell you the truth, ye believe me not. (John 8:41–45) With the destruction of the Temple in 70 CE, Christians—gentile and Jew alike—felt that they were witnessing the fulfillment of prophecy, imagining that the Roman legions were meting out God’s punishment to the betrayers of Christ. Anti-Semitism soon acquired a triumphal smugness, and with the ascension of Christianity as the state religion in 312 CE, with the conversion of Constantine, Christians began openly to relish and engineer the degradation of world Jewry.36 Laws were passed that revoked many of the civic privileges previously granted to Jews. Jews
Sam Harris (The End of Faith: Religion, Terror, and the Future of Reason)
For physical issues, we have an entire pharmacopoeia of pain medicine. For the actual pain of grief, we have . . . nothing. It’s always seemed so bizarre to me that we have an answer for almost every physical pain, but for this—some of the most intense pain we can experience—there is no medicine. You’re just supposed to feel it. And in a way, that’s true. The answer to pain is simply to feel it. Some traditions speak of practicing compassion in the face of pain, rather than trying to fix it. As I understand the Buddhist teaching, the fourth form of compassion in the Brahma Viharas, or the four immeasurables, describes an approach to the kinds of pain that cannot be fixed: upekkha, or equanimity. Upekkha is the practice of staying emotionally open and bearing witness to the pain while dwelling in equanimity around one’s limited ability to effect change. This form of compassion—for self, for others—is about remaining calm enough to feel everything, to remain calm while feeling everything, knowing that it can’t be changed. Equanimity (upekkha) is said to be the hardest form of compassion to teach, and the hardest to practice. It’s not, as is commonly understood, equanimity in the way of being unaffected by what’s happened, but more a quality of clear, calm attention in the face of immoveable truth. When something cannot be changed, the “enlightened” response is to pay attention. To feel it. To turn toward it and say, “I see you.” That’s the big secret of grief: the answer to the pain is in the pain. Or, as e. e. cummings wrote, healing of the wound is to be sought in the blood of the wound itself. It seems too intangible to be of use, but by allowing your pain to exist, you change it somehow. There’s power in witnessing your own pain. The challenge is to stay present in your heart, to your heart, to your own deep self, even, and especially, when that self is broken. Pain wants to be heard. It deserves to be heard. Denying or minimizing the reality of pain makes it worse. Telling the truth about the immensity of your pain—which is another way of paying attention—makes things different, if not better. It’s important to find those places where your grief gets to be as bad as it is, where it gets to suck as much as it does. Let your pain stretch out. Take up all the space it needs. When so many others tell you that your grief has to be cleaned up or contained, hearing that there is enough room for your pain to spread out, to unfurl—it’s healing. It’s a relief. The more you open to your pain, the more you can just be with it, the more you can give yourself the tenderness and care you need to survive this. Your pain needs space. Room to unfold. I think this is why we seek out natural landscapes that are larger than us. Not just in grief, but often in grief. The expanding horizon line, the sense of limitless space, a landscape wide and deep and vast enough to hold what is—we need those places. Sometimes grief like yours cannot be held by the universe itself. True. Sometimes grief needs more than an endless galaxy. Maybe your pain could wrap around the axle of the universe several times. Only the stars are large enough to take it on. With enough room to breathe, to expand, to be itself, pain softens. No longer confined and cramped, it can stop thrashing at the bars of its cage, can stop defending itself against its right to exist. There isn’t anything you need to do with your pain. Nothing you need to do about your pain. It simply is. Give it your attention, your care. Find ways to let it stretch out, let it exist. Tend to yourself inside it. That’s so different from trying to get yourself out of it. The way to come to pain is with open eyes, and an open heart, committed to bearing witness to your own broken place. It won’t fix anything. And it changes everything.
Megan Devine
In my early youth, from the moment I ceased to be under the guardianship of my relations, I began madly to enjoy all the pleasures which money could buy—and, of course, such pleasures became irksome to me. Then I launched out into the world of fashion—and that, too, soon palled upon me. I fell in love with fashionable beauties and was loved by them, but my imagination and egoism alone were aroused; my heart remained empty... I began to read, to study—but sciences also became utterly wearisome to me. I saw that neither fame nor happiness depends on them in the least, because the happiest people are the uneducated, and fame is good fortune, to attain which you have only to be smart. Then I grew bored... Soon afterwards I was transferred to the Caucasus; and that was the happiest time of my life. I hoped that under the bullets of the Chechenes boredom could not exist—a vain hope! In a month I grew so accustomed to the buzzing of the bullets and to the proximity of death that, to tell the truth, I paid more attention to the gnats—and I became more bored than ever, because I had lost what was almost my last hope. When I saw Bela in my own house; when, for the first time, I held her on my knee and kissed her black locks, I, fool that I was, thought that she was an angel sent to me by sympathetic fate... Again I was mistaken; the love of a savage is little better than that of your lady of quality, the barbaric ignorance and simplicity of the one weary you as much as the coquetry of the other. I am not saying that I do not love her still; I am grateful to her for a few fairly sweet moments; I would give my life for her—only I am bored with her...
Mikhail Lermontov (A Hero of Our Time)
Oh my,” she whispered. “Love calls me a healer to the nations. I need to go to the nations.” Within a year, she and her family relocated to another country in order to work with marginalized people. If you ask her today who told her to go, she will tell you it was the Holy Spirit. She realized that she had been hearing that voice her entire life; she just didn’t know who it was. Now she does. Now she listens and everything is different.
Jamie Winship (Living Fearless: Exchanging the Lies of the World for the Liberating Truth of God)
My pupil was a lively child, who had been spoilt and indulged, and therefore was sometimes wayward; but as she was committed entirely to my care, and no injudicious interference from any quarter ever thwarted my plans for her improvement, she soon forgot her little freaks, and became obedient and teachable. She had no great talents, no marked traits of character, no peculiar development of feeling or taste which raised her one inch above the ordinary level of childhood; but neither had she any deficiency or vice which sunk her below it. She made reasonable progress, entertained for me a vivacious, though perhaps not very profound, affection; and by her simplicity, gay prattle, and efforts to please, inspired me, in return, with a degree of attachment sufficient to make us both content in each other’s society. This, par parenthèse, will be thought cool language by persons who entertain solemn doctrines about the angelic nature of children, and the duty of those charged with their education to conceive for them an idolatrous devotion: but I am not writing to flatter parental egotism, to echo cant, or prop up humbug; I am merely telling the truth.
Charlotte Brontë (Jane Eyre: The Original 1847 Unabridged and Complete Edition (Charlotte Brontë Classics))
will rejoice, and no one can rob you of that joy. 23 At that time you won’t need to ask me for anything. I tell you the truth, you will ask the Father directly, and he will grant your request because you use my name. 24 You haven’t done this before. Ask, using my name, and you will receive, and you will have abundant joy.
Anonymous (Holy Bible Text Edition NLT: New Living Translation)
I’m a butcher,” he says passionately. “A brawler. A fool sometimes, then and now. When I love, I love wholly and simply. And I’ve set my love on you. No matter what you do, what you choose, I’m yours. Your warrior, your guardian, your ghost. I’ll be the voice that tells you the truth when you fucking hate it, and I’ll think of you until my very soul is devoured by the Void. You can’t stop my love, Lauriel. You can’t stop me from having faith, and I believe in you more deeply than I’ve believed in anyone, even myself.
Rebecca F. Kenney (A Hunt So Wild and Cruel)
This convincing confession of Miss Morgan prompts me to tell of my development of the radiant body, during half a century's experience. It began when I was mentally affirming statements of Truth. Just between my eyes, but above, I felt a "thrill" that lasted a few moments, then passed away. I found I could repeat this experience with affirmations. As time went on I could set up this "thrill" at other points in my body and finally it became a continuous current throughout my nervous system. I called it "the Spirit" and found that it was connected with a universal life force whose source was the Christ.
Charles Fillmore (The Charles Fillmore Collection)
To tell the truth, whenever I lifted my nose from my work I got a little claustrophobic myself. My venture westward reminded me how good it is to stretch one’s legs. “Hungry?” I asked. “Too serious to make a picnic?” She looked startled, then charmed, by the idea. “Good. Let’s do that.” So we went to the cook and baker and filled a bucket and went topside. Though she did not notice everyone smirking, I did.
Glen Cook (Chronicles of the Black Company (The Chronicles of the Black Company, #1-3))
So, on the afternoon that Robert Frost’s horse had clip-clopped through the snow, I’d raised my hand and told the class my mother was a poet. “Now, now, Delphine,” Mrs. Peterson said, “nice girls don’t tell their classmates lies.” She’d kept me after school and told me she knew the truth about how my mother had left home and that wanting a mother was no excuse for dreaming one up. I couldn’t leave the classroom until I’d written “I will not tell lies in class” twenty-five times on the blackboard. And then I’d had to erase the board clean. Vonetta sulked something pitiful when Cecile told her to cut it out.
Rita Williams-Garcia (One Crazy Summer (Gaither Sisters, #1))
It is a well-known fact, and one that has given much ground for complaint, that after women have lost their genital function their character often undergoes a peculiar alteration, they become quarrelsome, vexatious and overbearing, petty and stingy, that is to say that they exhibit typically sadistic and anal-erotic traits which they did not possess earlier during their period of womanliness,” Sigmund Freud declared in 1913.8 Well, you can argue that he was a man of his time; the first couple of decades of the twentieth century weren’t exactly known for their respect for women’s finer qualities. But unfortunately, the nonsense didn’t stop there. “The unpalatable truth must be faced that all postmenopausal women are castrates,” pronounced American gynecologist Robert Wilson in a 1963 essay;9 he then elaborated fulsomely on this theme in his 1966 bestseller Feminine Forever.10 This frighteningly influential book, it later emerged, was backed by a pharmaceutical company eager to market hormone replacement therapy. “Once the ovaries stop, the very essence of being a woman stops,” psychiatrist David Reuben wrote in 1969 in another bestseller, Everything You Always Wanted to Know About Sex but Were Afraid to Ask.11 The postmenopausal woman, he added, comes “as close as she can to being a man.” Or rather, “not really a man but no longer a functional woman.” Half a century on, has anything really changed? Sadly, I don’t think so. It might not be acceptable in most circles to write that kind of thing anymore, but menopausal women are too often the butt of men’s jokes for me really to believe that the attitudes themselves have shifted. They’ve just gone a little more underground. So if these are the stories men are telling about us, where are the stories we’re telling about ourselves? Unfortunately, they’re not always very much more helpful. A surprising number of self-help or quasi-medical books by female authors toe the male line, enjoining women to try to stay young and beautiful at all costs, and head off to their doctor to get hormone replacement therapy to hold off the “symptoms” of the dreaded aging “disease” for as long as possible. Their aim, it seems, is above all a suspension of the aging process, an exhortation to live in a state of suspended animation. And although more women are beginning to write about menopause as a natural and profoundly transformational life-passage, in the culture at large it is still primarily viewed as something to be managed, held off, even fought.
Sharon Blackie (Hagitude: Reimagining the Second Half of Life)
Today, finishing this, I am feeling better, but perhaps, tomorrow, I will not. That is okay. It is okay not to feel better. It is okay not to produce art. There is so much pressure, in narrative, for us to 'recover', to reach 'catharsis', to find 'resolution', to 'speak out'. I offer resolution here because I have found it, but that resolution is as much truth as sleight of hand, a conjuring trick. I may never manage to 'resolve' what has happened to me. In naming it, I have learned to live with it, and this in turn breaks a pattern of suffering. Naming is, for me, a magical act: it is a way of saying daily, I am alive. I have harnessed naming to bring order to chaos. Naming maps experience into history. Contains, within it, a legacy and a lineage: it offers up a spectrum of thought. But naming cannot undo what was done. Hope, for me, is found in the telling.
Jessica Cornwell (Birth Notes: A Memoir of Recovery)
I honestly cannot think of how I could describe it. Lying would be easier. I could steal from a hundred stories and tell you a lie so familiar you would swallow it whole. I could say my knees went to rubber. That my breath came hard in my chest. But that would not be the truth. My heart did not pound or stop or stutter. That is the sort of thing they say happens in stories. Foolishness. Hyperbole. Tripe. But still . . . Go out in the early days of winter, after the first cold snap of the season. Find a pool of water with a sheet of ice across the top, still fresh and new and clear as glass. Near the shore the ice will hold you. Slide out farther. Farther. Eventually you’ll find the place where the surface just barely bears your weight. There you will feel what I felt. The ice splinters under your feet. Look down and you can see the white cracks darting through the ice like mad, elaborate spiderwebs. It is perfectly silent, but you can feel the sudden sharp vibrations through the bottoms of your feet. That is what happened when Denna smiled at me. I don’t mean to imply I felt as if I stood on brittle ice about to give way beneath me. No. I felt like the ice itself, suddenly shattered, with cracks spiraling out from where she had touched my chest. The only reason I held together was because my thousand pieces were all leaning together. If I moved, I feared I would fall apart.
Patrick Rothfuss (The Name of the Wind (The Kingkiller Chronicle, #1))
Listen to me, Brooklyn West. You are the most infuriating woman I’ve ever met. You’re fucking crazy, you drink far too much, swear worse than Nix’s batshit Nana, and resort to violence far too quickly.” Her lips part, almost reaching a smile. “I have zero clue how we’re going to straighten out the shit in your head.” I stroke her cheek with my thumb. “You’re fucked up, unstable, and sometimes, you scare the hell out of me. That’s the truth nobody wants to tell you.” Tears shine in her eyes. “I told you to let me go. You still can.” “Shut the fuck up. I’m not done.” Unable to help myself, I let my palm slide up her bare leg. She’s wearing a short black dress, which exposes her creamy thighs as it rides up. Despite the funeral taking place across the road, my cock hardens beneath her. “My life hasn’t been the same since you walked into it.” I graze my lips against hers. “You insisted on trying to kill yourself rather than be saved. I’ve been terrified of losing you since. Every single one of us is wrapped around your finger. We love the bones of you.
J. Rose (Desecrated Saints (Blackwood Institute, #3))
I want you to tell me how you feel even when it's going to upset me to know. I want the whole and honest truth of you. I want the best side of you and the worst—and yes, I know the latter side is exceptionally bad.
E.L. Lyons (Starlight Jewel (Gifts of the Auldtree #1))
No, Mary must not give until she had counted the cost of that gift, until she was restored in body and mind, and was able to form a considered judgment. Then Stephen must tell her the cruel truth, she must say: 'I am one of those whom God marked on the forehead. Like Cain, I am marked and blemished. If you come to me, Mary, the world will abhor you, will persecute you, will call you unclean. Our love may be faithful even unto death and beyond—yet the world will call it unclean. We may harm no living creature by our love; we may grow more perfect in understanding and in charity because of our loving; but all this will not save you from the scourge of a world that will turn away its eyes from your noblest actions, finding only corruption and vileness in you. You will see men and women defiling each other, laying the burden of their sins upon their children. You will see unfaithfulness, lies and deceit among those whom the world views with approbation. You will find that many have grown hard of heart, have grown greedy, selfish, cruel and lustful; and then you will turn to me and will say: "You and I are more worthy of respect than these people. Why does the world persecute us, Stephen?" And I shall answer: "Because in this world there is only toleration for the so-called normal." And when you come to me for protection, I shall say: "I cannot protect you, Mary, the world has deprived me of my right to protect; I am utterly helpless, I can only love you.
Radclyffe Hall (The Well of Loneliness)
To arrive at love, then, is to arrive through obliteration. Eviscerate me, we mean to say, and I'll tell you the truth.
Ocean Vuong (On Earth We're Briefly Gorgeous)
One day, Abraham starts hearing a voice, which he believes is God. God tells him to kill Isaac and burn the body as a sacrificial offering.” Carl chuckled as he caught on. “The Book of Genesis, right?” “In my story, God doesn’t stop Abraham, who goes ahead with it. He kills his son.” “Seems to me Abraham should have taken Fabula.” “Here’s my question,” Beth said over the group’s laughter. “Ishmael learns what his dad did, and suicidal ideation takes hold. The truth is unbearable. Either God doesn’t exist, and Abraham murdered his son for nothing, or perhaps worse, God does, and Abraham killed his son because God wanted it.” Tugging at her collar, Tamara said, “Therapeutically, the answer is simple, which is it doesn’t matter. You treat Ishmael’s suicidal ideation and help him live with whatever truth he accepts. You can’t treat a belief.
Craig DiLouie (The Children of Red Peak)
Gentlemen, it is not my place to tell you how to do your jobs. I am a scientist, not a congressman. My task is to raise questions, carefully record observations, and vigorously analyze the dat, in hopes that others might raise more questions after me. There cannot be science the interrogation of closely held beliefs, as well as the demolition of personal aversions and biases, There cannot be science without free and unfettered dissemination of the truth. When you, as the creators of policy, seek to use your power to curtail understanding and thwart free exchange of knowledge and ideas, it is not I who will suffer the consequences of this, but rather the whole nation, and, indeed, the the entire world.
Kelly Barnhill (When Women Were Dragons)
I just need one night to get myself night to get away from my worries in life...Some type of sign...if you’re up there hanging with Jesus, tell him I need some good luck in my life...Something has to change...Send me a sign that you’re even up there watching over me...All I ask…
Desiree . (The Truth About the Godfreys: Daughters of Atlanta)
I imagined myself as a beautiful Cassandra, wandering vast and lonely halls, spilling prophecies that everyone laughed at, only to watch them come tragically true in the end. This feeling of mutedness, of injustice, was particularly strong in me, though I had no particular prophecies to tell, no clear-sighted warnings.
Lauren Groff (Delicate Edible Birds and Other Stories)
But I loved Joe, perhaps for no better reason in those early days than be- cause the dear fellow let me love him, and, as to him, my inner self was not so easily composed. It was much upon my mind (particularly when I first saw him looking about for his file) that I ought to tell Joe the whole truth. Yet I did not, and for the reason that I mistrusted that if I did, he would think me worse than I was. The fear of losing Joe's confidence, and of thenceforth sitting in the chimney corner at night staring drearily at my forever lost companion and friend, tied up my tongue. I morbidly represented to myself that if Joe knew it, I never afterwards could see him at the fireside feeling his fair whisker, without thinking that he was meditating on it. That, if Joe knew it, I never af- terwards could see him glance, however casually, at yesterday's meat or pudding when it came on to-day's table, without thinking that he was debating whether I had been in the pantry. That, if Joe knew it, and at any subsequent period of our joint domestic life remarked that his beer was flat or thick, the conviction that he suspected tar in it, would bring a rush of blood to my face. In a word, I was too cowardly to do what I knew to be right, as I had been too cowardly to avoid doing what I knew to be wrong.
Charles Dickens (Great Expectations)
Silence is what gets to me. All the things you don't say. All the words you don't write. That gets to you. After a while it just kills you. All the stories you teach yourself not to tell. All the truth and lies you never ever print because all of it is too dangerous.
Paolo Bacigalupi (The Water Knife)
Jesus looked at them. “'I tell you the truth, whatever you did not do for one of the least of these, you did not do for me.
Russ Scalzo (On the Edge of Time, Part Two)
I feel like I’m five again, picking flower petals. He’s lying, he’s telling the truth. He loves me, he loves me not.
Stephanie Alves (Spin the Bottle (Campus Games, #2))
I envy her ability to tell the entire world what she feels. One day, I'll find a way, too.
Penelope Przekop (Please Love Me)
How do you know which friends are real?' I ask. 'They love you; they tell you the truth,' he whispers in my ear.
Penelope Przekop (Please Love Me)
Don’t only read the Bible in some formulaic pattern. Instead, ask God, “What does this say to me? How is this related to my identity? What do you want me to know?” You might truth tell and confess that a certain Scripture passage frightens you. Ask the Lord, “Why am I afraid? What am I afraid of?” After
Jamie Winship (Living Fearless: Exchanging the Lies of the World for the Liberating Truth of God)
How dare you call yourself unworthy. I died to show you your value to me.” The Bible tells us that God “made Him who knew no sin to be sin in our behalf, so that we might become the righteousness of God in Him” (2 Cor. 5:21 NASB). Do you get that? Because of Christ’s finished work, we are to come to God as those made righteous. Be aware of what God in Christ has done. Pay attention to this stunning progression of truth: “We love Him because He first loved us” (1 John 4:19 NKJV, emphasis added). How do we know this to be true? Because “God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners”—separated enemies of God—“Christ died for us” (Rom. 5:8 NIV, emphasis added). Why? Because “we are his workmanship”—his master work—“created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them” (Eph. 2:10 ESV).
Jamie Winship (Living Fearless: Exchanging the Lies of the World for the Liberating Truth of God)
Do you remember what you said to me on the last day of school?” I ask. “I said a lot of things, Jim. But that was, what? 14? 15 years ago?” “You said that if I didn’t tell her how I felt, it would come back someday and bite me on my ass.” “That sounds like something I would say.” “I hate to admit it,” I say, “but you were right.” “I was wise beyond my years,” Mark says lightly. “At the time, I thought you were just messing with my head.” “I was messing with your head. I was also telling you the truth.
Alex Diaz-Granados (Reunion: A Story: A Novella (The Reunion Duology Book 1))
I do not succeed in keeping the Law of Nature very well, and the moment anyone tells me I am not keeping it, there starts up in my mind a string of excuses as long as your arm. The question at the moment is not whether they are good excuses. The point is that they are one more proof of how deeply, whether we like it or not, we believe in the Law of Nature. The truth is, we believe in the Law so much that we cannot bear to face the fact that we are breaking it, and consequently we try to shift the responsibility. For you notice that it is only for our bad behavior that we find all these explanations.
C. S. Lewis
Minny came ever day to make sure I was breathing, feed me food to keep me living. All I know is, I ain't saying it. And I know she ain't saying what she want a say either and it's a strange thing happening here cause nobody saying nothing and we still managing to have us a conversation. "Mama, it would really be so terrible if I never met a husband?" Write about what disturbs you, particularly if it bothers no one else. I stare at her, wishing the ceiling fan would fly from its post, crash down on both of us. I feel tears come up in my eyes, cause three years just ain't long enough. A hundred years ain't gone be long enough. Eugenia, just because this is a hospital doesn't mean I'm an invalid" "you kind. you smart. you important." See, I think if God had intended for white people and colored people to be this close together for so much of the day, he would've made us color-blind. Every time a Negro complained about the cost of living didn't mean she was begging for money. But the truth is, I don't care about voting. I don't care about eating at a counter with white people. What I care about is, if, in ten years, a white lady will call my girls dirty and accuse them of stealing the silver. when you little, you only get to ask two questions, what's your name and how old you is, so you better get em right. Mister Jonny knows about me. Miss Celia Knows Mister Jony know about me. But Mister Jonny doesn't know that Miss Celia knows he knows. "Yes ma'am. I tell her." In about a hundred years. How an awful day could turn even worse. It seems like at some point you'd just run out of awful. Lots of folks think if you talk back to your husband, you crossed the line. And that justifies punishment. She can take the most complicated things in life and wrap them up so small and simple, they'll fit right in your pocket. "Don't you let him cheapen you. If Stuart doesn't know how intelligent and kind I raised you to be, he can march straight on back to State Street. Frankly, I don't care much for Stuart. He doesn't know how lucky he was to have you." You tell her we love her, like she's our own family. "You a beautiful person, Minny." Mississippi is like my mother. I am allowed to complain about her all I want, but God help the person who raises an ill word about her around me unless she is their mother too. For the dishonesty upon which a society is founded makes every emotion suspect, makes it impossible to know whether what flowed between two people was honest feeling or pity or pragmatism
Kathryn Stockett (The Help)
Why should I be a slave to fear if Jesus has already saved me?" Grigor asked. "Everyone is ashamed. So they pretend they're perfect. But everybody sins. Only God is perfect." Jude said. "That's what I keep telling my children," Grigor said. "People don't like when the truth is easy," Jude said.
Ottessa Moshfegh (Lapvona)
Your father will be at the house party?" "He wasn't planning on going, but as soon as he finds out you and I will be there together, he'll change his plans. I have no doubt." The party would be excruciating with Warren York there. "And you don't trust him enough with the truth." Ellison nodded. "No way. He would tell me it wasn't worth it. He'd rather lose the company, lose everything, than imagine the two of us happily together, even if it's fake. Appearances are everything to him." I ground my teeth together again. "He hates me that much?" Ellison brushed past me to set his bottle next to mine by the sink. On his way out of the kitchen, he looked back over his shoulder. "No. He hates me that much." And then he disappeared down the hall.
Lucy Lennox (Hostile Takeover (Hostile Takeover #1))
Approaching Ben’s spirit, Luke asked, “Why didn’t you tell me? You told me Vader betrayed and murdered my father.” “Your father was seduced by the dark side of the Force,” Ben answered. “He ceased to be Anakin Skywalker and became Darth Vader. When that happened, the good man who was your father was destroyed. So what I told was true…from a certain point of view.” “A certain point of view!” Luke repeated derisively. “Luke, you’re going to find that many of the truths we cling to depend greatly on our own point of view.” Ben’s spirit eased himself down to sit upon the length of a fallen tree. “Anakin was a good friend.
Ryder Windham (Star Wars: Classic Trilogy: Collecting A New Hope, The Empire Strikes Back, and Return of the Jedi (Disney Junior Novel (ebook)))
I'm tired of playing games. What aren't you telling me?" I asked quietly. Misha bit his lower lip, squinting at me, like he was trying to decide if he was going to answer truthfully or not. A smile spread over his face slowly and he looked away. "I already told you — I'm a wolf too. It's easier to survive when you have a pack." His bright gaze returned to mine, looking pleased with himself. My jaw about hit the sidewalk. "You're telling me you...?" He winked and reached for the door handle.
Ashlyn Drewek (The Kidnapping of Roan Sinclair (The Solnyshko Duet, #1))
Why are you keeping me alive? I’ve told you everything I know, and you know now that I was telling the truth. You don’t need me. Torturing me like this, keeping me on the edge of living, is far crueler than anything I’ve ever done.
Rebecca Rathe (Revelations)
I’m in love with an angel. And not the kind with wings and a halo. A human with a heart bigger than a football field. An angel with talent that knows no bounds, who doesn’t conform to societal norms, because those are for suckers. Who believes in aliens and cryptids… Conspiracy theories? My angel knows them all, and will tell you just how misguided your truths are. I’m in love with an angel who is gorgeous and sexy, and has a body that’ll make you weep… And funnily enough, it’s made up almost entirely of sugar. I’m in love with an angel who uses Twizzlers as straws and gives gummy bears names. Oh, hello, Bob. Nice to eat you today. I’m in love with an angel who never stopped believing in me… Even after every bad thing I ever did to him. An angel I used to say hurtful things to, but who still spoke words of encouragement to me when I needed it… Who was there for me when no one else was. An angel who told me it’s not over until it’s over. Because it’s not. I promise, it’s not. My angel was the last person I thought I could love… But I came back to him, over and over, because my heart wanted him when I didn’t understand why. And now I do understand it. It’s as clear as the crystalline grayish blue in his eyes. My angel saved me. He rescued me from hiding. He held me when I needed him, and he loved me when I didn’t. He’s selfless, real… just a brilliant, beautiful fucking weirdo. I’m in love with an angel… And his name is Avi.
Nyla K. (For the Fans)
Lift my head to stare down at him. Fight back a flutter of fear. His eyes had fallen closed as I rubbed against him, but they open now. Scan me closely. He’s flushed and breathless as he says, “We can stop, love. We don’t have to do anything you don’t want to do.” “I don’t want to stop.” “You look… scared.” “I am scared,” I admit, too far gone to question my instinct to tell him the deepest truth. “I’ve never done this before.” He nods and lifts a hand to cup my cheek. “We can wait.” “I don’t want to wait. I want this. I just… it’s new to me. To be with someone like this. I don’t feel like I know what I’m doing.” “It feels new to me too, love. That’s the truth. I don’t feel like I know what I’m doing either. So why don’t we do the best we can?” I smile, just a little shaky. “Yeah. That sounds good. Let’s do that.
Claire Kent (Sanctuary (Kindled, #6))