When You Miss Something Quotes

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There is something demoralizing about watching two people get more and more crazy about each other, especially when you are the only extra person in the room. It's like watching Paris from an express caboose heading in the opposite direction--every second the city gets smaller and smaller, only you feel it's really you getting smaller and smaller and lonelier and lonelier, rushing away from all those lights and excitement at about a million miles an hour.
Sylvia Plath (The Bell Jar)
There are a hundred things she has tried to chase away the things she won't remember and that she can't even let herself think about because that's when the birds scream and the worms crawl and somewhere in her mind it's always raining a slow and endless drizzle. You will hear that she has left the country, that there was a gift she wanted you to have, but it is lost before it reaches you. Late one night the telephone will sign, and a voice that might be hers will say something that you cannot interpret before the connection crackles and is broken. Several years later, from a taxi, you will see someone in a doorway who looks like her, but she will be gone by the time you persuade the driver to stop. You will never see her again. Whenever it rains you will think of her.
Neil Gaiman
Love is . . . Being happy for the other person when they are happy, Being sad for the person when they are sad, Being together in good times, And being together in bad times. LOVE IS THE SOURCE OF STRENGTH. Love is . . . Being honest with yourself at all times, Being honest with the other person at all times, Telling, listening, respecting the truth, And never pretending. LOVE IS THE SOURCE OF REALITY. Love is . . . An understanding so complete that you feel as if you are a part of the other person, Accepting the other person just the way they are, And not trying to change them to be something else. LOVE IS THE SOURCE OF UNITY. Love is . . . The freedom to pursue your own desires while sharing your experiences with the other person, The growth of one individual alongside of and together with the growth of another individual. LOVE IS THE SOURCE OF SUCCESS. Love is . . . The excitement of planning things together, The excitement of doing things together. LOVE IS THE SOURCE OF THE FUTURE. Love is . . . The fury of the storm, The calm in the rainbow. LOVE IS THE SOURCE OF PASSION. Love is . . . Giving and taking in a daily situation, Being patient with each other's needs and desires. LOVE IS THE SOURCE OF SHARING. Love is . . . Knowing that the other person will always be with you regardless of what happens, Missing the other person when they are away but remaining near in heart at all times. LOVE IS THE SOURCE OF SECURITY. LOVE IS . . . THE SOURCE OF LIFE!
Susan Polis Schutz
It's like when someone dies, the initial stages of grief seem to be the worst. But in some ways, it's sadder as time goes by and you consider how much they've missed in your life. In the world.
Emily Giffin (Something Borrowed (Darcy & Rachel, #1))
I feel like I'm missing something really important when you're gone. So important I don't feel like myself. I've never felt like someone was mine before. But you're mine, Jocelyn. I've known that from the moment we met. And I'm yours. I don't want to be anyone else's, babe.
Samantha Young (On Dublin Street (On Dublin Street, #1))
People are supposed to care. It's good that people mean something to you, that you miss people when they're gone.
John Green (An Abundance of Katherines)
Can I say something?' 'Go on' 'I'm a little drunk' 'Me too. That's okay.' 'Just....I missed you, you know.' 'I missed you too.' 'But so, so much, Dexter. There were so many things I wanted to talk to you about, and you weren't there-' 'same here.' 'I tell you what it is. It's.....When I didn't see you, I thought about you every day, I mean EVERY DAY in some way or another-' 'same here.' '-Even if it was just "I wish Dexter could see this" or "Where's Dexter now?" or "Christ that Dexter, what an idiot", you know what I mean, and seeing you today, well, I thought I'd got you back - my BEST friend. And now all this, the wedding, the baby- I'm so happy for you, Dex, but it feels like I've lost you again.'- -'You know what happens you have a family, your responsibilities change, you lose touch with people' 'It won't be like that, I promise.' 'Do you?' 'Absolutely' 'You swear? No more disappearing?' 'I won't if you won't.' Their lips touched now, mouths pursed tight, their eyes open, both of them stock still. The moment held, a kind of glorious confusion.
David Nicholls (One Day)
Void is when there is absolutely nothing there and the nothing is natural, a complete vacuum. But empty - with empty, you are aware of what's supposed to be there. Empty means something is missing.
David Levithan (Every You, Every Me)
Did you know I always thought you were braver than me? Did you ever guess that that was why I was so afraid? It wasn't that I only loved some of you. But I wondered if you could ever love more than some of me. I knew I'd miss you. But the surprising thing is, you never leave me. I never forget a thing. Every kind of love, it seems, is the only one. It doesn't happen twice. And I never expected that you could have a broken heart and love with it too, so much that it doesn't seem broken at all. I know young people look at me and think my youth seems so far away, but it's all around me, and you're all around me. Tiger Lily, do you think magic exists if it can be explained? I can explain why I loved you, I can explain the theory of evolution that tells me why mermaids live in Neverland and nowhere else. But it still feels magic. The lost boys all stood at our wedding. Does it seem odd to you that they could have stood at a wedding that wasn't yours and mine? It does to me. and I'm sorry for it, and for a lot, and I also wouldn't change it. It is so quiet here. Even with all the trains and the streets and the people. It's nothing like the jungle. The boys have grown. Everything has grown. Do you think you will ever grow? I hope not. I like to think that even if I change and fade away, some other people won't. I like to think that one day after I die, at least one small particle of me - of all the particles that will spread everywhere - will float all the way to Neverland, and be part of a flower or something like that, like that poet said, the one that your Tik Tok loved. I like to think that nothing's final, and that everyone gets to be together even when it looks like they don't, that it all works out even when all the evidence seems to say something else, that you and I are always young in the woods, and that I'll see you sometime again, even if it's not with any kind of eyes I know of or understand. I wouldn't be surprised if that is the way things go after all - that all things end happy. Even for you and Tik Tok. and for you and me. Always, Your Peter P.S. Please give my love to Tink. She was always such a funny little bug.
Jodi Lynn Anderson (Tiger Lily)
I'm seven hundred years old, Alexander. I know when something isn't going to work. You won't even admit I exist to your parents." Alec stared at him. "I thought you were three hundred! You're seven huundred years old?" "Well," Magnus amended, "eight hundred. But I dont look it. Anyway, you're missing the point. The point is-" But Alec never found out what the point was because at that moment a dozen more Iblis demons flooded into the square. He felt his jaw drop. "Damn it." Magnus followed his gaze. the demons were already fanning out into a half circle around them, their yellow eyes glowing. "Way to change the subject, Lightwood.
Cassandra Clare (City of Glass (The Mortal Instruments, #3))
Let me get this straight. First you decide I'm a demon because of a power I didn't ask for and don't even understand. Then when that falls through you label me a fallen sybil and a ho. Am I missing something or do you just not like me
Karen Chance (Touch the Dark (Cassandra Palmer, #1))
What happens to the rest of something when you smash its heart?
Francesca Lia Block (Missing Angel Juan (Weetzie Bat, #4))
And I think missing you hurts the most when something funny happens. Because in that one moment I find myself laughing, and within the next second I want to tell or text you what happened. And then it hits me again, every single time, that you aren’t there anymore. That I lost that one thing that mattered to me.
Elisabeth Van den Abeele
Did you miss me, Alina? Did you miss me when you were gone?" "Every day," I said hoarsely. "I missed you every hour. And you know what the worst part was? It caught me completely by surprise. I'd catch myself walking around to find you, not for any reason, just out of habit, because I'd seen something I wanted to tell you about, or because I just wanted to hear your voice. And then I'd realize that you weren't there anymore, and every time, every single time, it was like having the wind knocked out of me. I've risked my life for you. I've walked half the length of Ravka for you, and I'd do it again and again and again just to be with you, just to starve with you and freeze with you and hear you complain about hard cheese every day. So don't tell me we don't belong together," he said fiercely. He was very close now, and my heart was suddenly hammering in my chest. "I'm sorry it took me so long to see you, Alina. But I see you now.
Leigh Bardugo (Shadow and Bone (The Shadow and Bone Trilogy, #1))
I miss him all the time. But it’s moments like this, when I’m on the precipice of finally doing work that might just expand my heart, that I wish I could at least send him a letter, telling him what I’m doing. And I wish that he could send me one back. I already know what he would write. Something like “I’m proud of you. I love you.” But still, I’d like to get one anyway.
Taylor Jenkins Reid (The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo)
When you have been with your partner for so many years, they become the glove compartment map that you've worn dog-eared and white-creased, the trail you recogonize so well you could draw it by heart and for this very reason keep it with you on journeys at all times. And yet, when you least expect it, one day you open your eyes and there is an unfamiliar turnoff, a vantage point taht wasn't there before, and you have to stop and wonder if maybe this landmark isn't new at all, but rather something you have missed all along.
Jodi Picoult (My Sister's Keeper)
It's when I'm standing six feet away from you and not being able to find the words to tell you how much I love you and how much I miss you that I want to just scream to the whole room that I'm still in love with you. It's when I'm sitting alone with the phone in my hand dialing your number and hanging up that I would trade a thousand tomorrows for just one yesterday. Then I could just call you to tell you goodnight. It's when I am really sad about something and need someone to talk to that I realize you're the only one who really knew me at all. It's when I cry myself to sleep at night and it hits me how much I would give to hold you at that very moment. It's when I think about you that I realize no one else in the world is meant for me.
James Frey (A Million Little Pieces)
Innovators are owners of the situation. They own it because they create it—quite literally. They embrace the world as it should match the vision in their heads. And when something is missing from that vision, they fill the gap.
Raoul Davis Jr. (Firestarters: How Innovators, Instigators, and Initiators Can Inspire You to Ignite Your Own Life)
You don't become an 'artist' unless you've got something missing somewhere. Blaise Pascal called it a God-shaped hole. Everyone's got one but some are blacker and wider than others. It's a feeling of being abandoned,cut adrift in space and time-sometimes following the loss of a loved one. You can never completely fill that hole-you can try with songs,family,faith and by living a full life...but when things are silent, you can still hear the hissing of what's missing.
Bono
Death is fugitive; even when you're watching for it, the actual instant somehow slips between your fingers. You don't get that sudden drop of the head you see in movies. Instead you simply sit there, waiting for something to happen, and all at once you realize you've missed it.
Jonathan Stroud (The Whispering Skull (Lockwood & Co., #2))
I’ve been kissed by men who did a very good job. But they don’t give kissing their whole attention. They can’t. No matter how hard they try parts of their minds are on something else. Missing the last bus—or their chances of making the gal—or their own techniques in kissing—or maybe worry about jobs, or money, or will husband or papa or the neighbors catch on. Mike doesn’t have technique . . . but when Mike kisses you he isn’t doing anything else. You’re his whole universe . . . and the moment is eternal because he doesn’t have any plans and isn’t going anywhere. Just kissing you.
Robert A. Heinlein (Stranger in a Strange Land)
Maybe you had to leave in order to really miss a place; maybe you had to travel to figure out how beloved your starting point was... ...Parents aren't the people you come from. They're the people you want to be, when you grow up. I sat between my mother and my father, watching strangers on TV carry in Shaker rockers and dusty paintings and ancient beer tankards and cranberry glass dishes; people and their hidden treasures, who had to be told by experts that they'd taken something incredibly precious for granted.
Jodi Picoult (Handle with Care)
Didn't you ever have a father yourself? You don't want him for a reason. You want him because he's your father.' So I figured it's because I never had a father that I don't want one now. A person can't miss something she never had.
Rebecca Stead (When You Reach Me)
I miss our Would You Rather conversations and your hilarious answers. I miss your laugh. I miss the way I feel when I make you laugh. Like I just won something really important. I miss just sitting with you in perfect, silent understanding. I miss the way you never judge anyone. It’s such a rare find, Liv. And I miss watching how kind you are with everyone. I miss being able to call you and talk to you about random shit and important shit. I miss my best friend. I miss you. I love you.
Samantha Young (Before Jamaica Lane (On Dublin Street, #3))
When you know that something's going to happen, you'll start trying to see signs of its approach in just about everything. Always try to remember that most of the things that happen in this world aren't signs. They happen because they happen, and their only real significance lies in normal cause and effect. You'll drive yourself crazy if you start trying to pry the meaning out of every gust of wind or rain squall. I'm not denying that there might actually be a few signs that you won't want to miss. Knowing the difference is the tricky part.
David Eddings (Belgarath the Sorcerer)
When you get homesick, it's not something missing, it's something present, a visit. People and places from far away arrive and keep you company for a while.
Erri De Luca (God's Mountain)
Taylor: “Show me your craftiness. I’ll give you one question.” Jeremy: “I’m a big believer in first impressions,” he finally said. “Tell me what your first thought was when Jason walked into the courtroom.” Taylor: “I vowed to hate him forever.” Jeremy: “That’s exactly what I said nineteen years ago, five minutes after he first walked into our dorm room.” .... Jason : “Did I miss something?” Taylor: “You’re a bit older than I thought, Jason Andrews.” Jason glanced quickly at Jeremy, who held up his hands innocently. Jeremy: “I swear, she forced it out of me.
Julie James (Just the Sexiest Man Alive)
I’ve learned that no matter what happens, or how bad it seems today, life does go on, and it will be better tomorrow. I’ve learned that you can tell a lot about a person by the way he/she handles these three things: a rainy day, lost luggage, and tangled Christmas tree lights. I’ve learned that regardless of your relationship with your parents, you’ll miss them when they’re gone from your life. I’ve learned that making a “living” is not the same thing as making a “life.” I’ve learned that life sometimes gives you a second chance. I’ve learned that you shouldn’t go through life with a catcher’s mitt on both hands; you need to be able to throw something back. I’ve learned that whenever I decide something with an open heart, I usually make the right decision. I’ve learned that even when I have pains, I don’t have to be one. I’ve learned that every day you should reach out and touch someone. People love a warm hug, or just a friendly pat on the back. I’ve learned that I still have a lot to learn. I’ve learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.
Maya Angelou
It's funny how when you're little, you miss all the little lies. They float right past you, but you don't wonder about them much. For a long time, you think this is just something adults still do after being kids - pretend. Then one day you wake up and realize most of the world you're in is built on someone's make-believe.
V.C. Andrews (Misty (Wildflowers, #1))
There will always be a part of you that misses her. You'll see something that reminds you of her and want to tell her about it, only to realize she's not there anymore. Then you'll feel her loss all over again. (Ravyn) You're not helping me, Ravyn. (Jack) I know, buddy. But you will eventually make peace with yourself, and that's the most important thing. Eventually, you'll even be able to smile again when you think about her. (Ravyn)
Sherrilyn Kenyon (Dark Side of the Moon (Dark-Hunter, #9; Were-Hunter, #3))
I guess, really thinking about it, I always assumed when you missed someone , it was tangible...something real you could grab and hold on to, but it's a not-there feeling.
Norma Fox Mazer (After the Rain)
But his face had that hollow look, as if there was something gone... you know that look. The inward focus. Distantly attentive to the home you're missing, or the someone you're missing. That look that a bird has when it turns it dry reptilian eye on you. That look that doesn't see you because the mind is filled up with someone it would rather see.
Gregory Maguire (The Next Queen of Heaven)
Reyes. Alexander. Farrow," I said. Seconds after I spoke his name, Reyes walked into his bedroom, and I looked across the open space directly from my room into his. He waited for me to continue. "I feel like there's something missing from my bedroom." A dimple appeared at the corner of his mouth. "You don't say." "Any idea what that might be?" He glanced around my room as well, then shrugged. "I can't imagine." "Oh, wait," I said, stepping from my room into his, "wasn't there something here? Like, I don't know, a wall or something?" He looked up. "You could be right. I do seem to remember a barrier of some kind here." "Yep," I said, stepping closer, "I definitely remember a partition separating our apartments." When his only response was a mischievous tilt of his full mouth, I asked, "Where did you put my wall?" He crossed his arms over his chest and leaned against his doorframe. "What makes you think I took it?" "It was there this morning." "And that means I took it? Maybe you just misplaced it. Where exactly did you see it last?" I pressed my lips together. "You tore down my wall." The smile he wore could've charmed the panties off a nun. Completely unrepentant, he admitted, "I tore down your wall.
Darynda Jones (Sixth Grave on the Edge (Charley Davidson, #6))
Passion is something you really don't miss, after it has cooled. It is like looking at an empty bottle on the side of the road and thinking, "Boy, I wish I had a Coke." The loves you miss are the ones that go away when they are still warm, even hot, to the touch.
Rick Bragg (All Over But the Shoutin')
You'll reach a comfort zone in your life and start to wonder how you got there, how did you miss the sign posts that directed your real inner truth? Don't feel so guilty, you know when your meant to know and I guess that's the thing they don't teach you; when growing up, pain is inevitable but staying the same is a choice. Don't question why your feeling ready for something new, question why you stayed the same for so long.
Nikki Rowe
When Julian looked at her like that, like she was brilliant and amazing, it made the missing-her-parents ache in her heart a little less. There was something about having someone care about you like that that made you feel like you could never be totally alone.
Cassandra Clare (City of Heavenly Fire (The Mortal Instruments, #6))
But maybe the trick isn't sticking everything out. The trick is quitting the right thing at the right time. The trick is understanding that saying "No, thank you" to something you're expected to accept isn't failure. It's a whole other level of success.
Mary Laura Philpott (I Miss You When I Blink: Essays)
The spot was empty. Empty but not void. Void is when there is absolutely nothing there and the nothing is natural, a complete vacuum. But empty-with empty, you are aware of what's supposed to be there. Empty means something is missing.
David Levithan
Nefarious. This is what we get when we hire a Yale boy.” “You missed sacrosanct earlier. And taciturn and glowering,” Jack said. “What’s glowering?” “Me, apparently.” Wilkins pointed. “Now that has to be a joke.” He turned to Davis. “You heard that, right?” Davis didn’t answer him, having spun his chair around to type something at his computer. “Let’s see what Google says… Ah – here it is. ‘Glowering: dark; showing a brooding ill humor.
Julie James (Something About You (FBI/US Attorney, #1))
I was trying to go... somewhere. But I kept getting pulled back here. I couldn't stop walking, couldn't stop thinking. About the first time I ever saw you, and how after I couldn't forget you. I wanted to, but I couldn't stop myself. I forced Hodge to let me be the one who came to find you and bring you back to the Institute. And even back then, in that stupid coffee shop, when I saw you with Simon, even then that felt wrong to me-- I should have been the one sitting with you. The one who made you laugh like that. I couldn't get rid of that feeling. That it should have been me. And the more I knew you, the more I felt it-- it had never been like that for me before. I'd always wanted a girl and then gotten to know her and not wanted her anymore, but with you the feeling just got stronger and stronger until that night when you showed up at Renwick's and I knew. And then to find out the reason I felt like that-- like you were some part of me I'd lost and never ever knew I was missing until I saw you again-- that the reason was that you were my sister, it felt like some cosmic joke. Like God was spitting on me. I don't even know for what-- for thinking that I actually get to have you, that I would deserve something like that, to be happy. I couldn't imagine what it was I'd done that I was being punished for--
Cassandra Clare (City of Glass (The Mortal Instruments, #3))
Missing someone is not about how long it has been since you have seen them or the amount of time since you have talked…it is about that very moment when you are doing something and wishing they were there with you.
Dru Edmund Kucherera
Stuart's a wizard with those kinds of things," she said. "What kinds of things?" "Oh, he can find anything online." Debbie was obviously one of those parents who still hadn't quite grasped that using the Internet was not exactly wizardry, and that we could all find anything online. I didn't say this, because you don't want people to feel that they've missed something really obvious, even when they have.
Maureen Johnson (Let It Snow: Three Holiday Romances)
The best way to be missed when you're gone, Is to stand for something when you're here
Seth Godin
i will tell you about selfish people. even when they know they will hurt you they walk into your life to taste you because you are the type of being they don’t want to miss out on. you are too much shine to not be felt. so when they have gotten a good look at everything you have to offer. when they have taken your skin your hair and your secrets with them. when they realize how real this is. how much of a storm you are and it hits them. that is when the cowardice sets in. that is when the person you thought they were is replaced by the sad reality of what they are. that is when they lose every fighting bone in their body and leave after saying you will find better than me. you will stand there naked with half of them still hidden somewhere inside you and sob. asking them why they did it. why they forced you to love them when they had no intention of loving you back and they’ll say something along the lines of i just had to try. i had to give it a chance. it was you after all. but that isn’t romantic. it isn’t sweet. the idea that they were so engulfed by your existence they had to risk breaking it for the sake of knowing they weren’t the one missing out. your existence meant that little next to their curiosity of you.
Rupi Kaur (Milk and Honey)
The one thing I’d learned was that having someone with you all the time did not take away the loneliness. You could be surrounded by people and be lonely. Something was missing. I could almost pinpoint it, but right when it was within my grasp I forgot; it just slipped away.
Abbi Glines (Ceaseless (Existence, #3))
He misses the feeling of creating something out of something. That’s right — something out of something. Because something out of nothing is when you make something up out of thin air, in which case it has no value. Anybody can do that. But something out of something means it was really there the whole time, inside you, and you discover it as part of something new, that’s never happened before.
Etgar Keret (פתאום דפיקה בדלת)
When we lose certain people, or when we are dispossessed from a place, or a community, we may simply feel that we are undergoing something temporary, that mourning will be over and some restoration of prior order will be achieved. But maybe when we undergo what we do, something about who we are is revealed, something that delineates the ties we have to others, that shows us that these ties constitute what we are, ties or bonds that compose us. It is not as if an “I” exists independently over here and then simply loses a “you” over there, especially if the attachment to “you” is part of what composes who “I” am. If I lose you, under these conditions, then I not only mourn the loss, but I become inscrutable to myself. Who “am” I, without you? When we lose some of these ties by which we are constituted, we do not know who we are or what to do. On one level, I think I have lost “you” only to discover that “I” have gone missing as well.
Judith Butler (Precarious Life: The Powers of Mourning and Violence)
Do you know when you've lost something—like your favorite T-shirt or a set of keys—and while looking for it, you come across something else you once missed but have long since forgotten? Well whatever it was, there was a point where you decided to stop searching, maybe because it was no longer required or a new replacement was found. It is almost as if it never existed in the first place—until that moment of rediscovery, a flash of recognition. Everyone has one—an inventory of lost things waiting to be found. Yearning to be acknowledged for the worth they once held in your life. I think this is where I belong—among all your other lost things. A crumpled note at the bottom of a drawer or an old photograph pressed between the pages of a book. I hope someday you will find me and remember what I once meant to you.
Lang Leav (Love & Misadventure)
Why settle for something like that, when you've tasted heaven and you'll always know what you're missing?
Christine Zolendz (Fall From Grace (Mad World, #1))
Detectives are only human; we're not Gods that know everything. When detectives tell their theory, in reality, most are rather anxious. Thinking that there's always possibility that they could have missed something, somewhere... But in return, the excitement you experience when your theory's smack bang correct is twice as great!
Gosho Aoyama (名探偵コナン 42 (Detective Conan #42))
But when you're focused on feeding something that can never truly be satiated, you miss what you're actually hungry for.
Elissa Sussman (Funny You Should Ask)
Remember with your heart. Go back, go back and go back. The skies of this world were always meant to have dragons. When they are not here, humans miss them. Some never think of them, of course. But some children, from the time they are small, they look up at the blue summer sky and watch for something that never comes. Because they know. Something that was supposed to be there faded and vanished. Something that we must bring back, you and I.
Robin Hobb (Golden Fool (Tawny Man, #2))
Reed’s face inches closer to mine on the pillow as he says, “Let me try to explain something to you, Evie. All of these years that I have been here, it is as if I have been sleeping. I have to always pretend to be something that I am not—pretend to be human. When I am not pretending to be human, then I am hunting evil, vicious angels who want nothing more than to…” his voice trails off and there is hollowness in his tone that reflects the loneliness of his existence. “But now, I am awake, for the first time in my existence, and not only am I awake, but I feel flames when you are near me. You have changed things for me. There is no reason to pretend around you. If I had to live without you now…now that I know what I have been missing…” The need in his voice makes me want to promise him anything, give him anything, just to fill that void in him. “I cannot go back to sleep, Evie. You are the only thing that makes me want to live. If you leave here, if you ascend to Paradise, or even if you are cast into the abyss, or taken there by the Fallen…I will have to follow you, no matter where you go. Even if I have to pursue you into the dark…if you cease to be, then so will I. You are my sin and my redemption.
Amy A. Bartol (Inescapable (The Premonition, #1))
you know when you read a book, sometimes, and you suddenly realize that you’ve been missing something your whole life, and you weren’t even aware, and all at once you’ve found it and are just a little bit more whole?
H.G. Parry (The Unlikely Escape of Uriah Heep)
He can’t help Marianne, no matter what he does. There’s something frightening about her, some huge emptiness in the pit of her being. It’s like waiting for a lift to arrive and when the doors open nothing is there, just the terrible dark emptiness of the elevator shaft, on and on forever. She’s missing some primal instinct, self-defense or self-preservation, which makes other human beings comprehensible. You lean in expecting resistance, and everything just falls away in front of you.
Sally Rooney (Normal People)
You're cute in the morning," he told me. "I am?" I asked. "Cute and sweet." "Mm," I mumbled, glad he thought that but I'd always been a morning person. I was a night person too. I was an anytime person when I wasn't stressy and in a bad mood. One of his hands left my back and I watched his eyes get heated and intense as they studied my face. Then he did something beautiful, something amazing, something that, if I'd had any doubts as to my certainty, they would have disintegrated. He tenderly slid the backs of his knuckles against the skin of my cheek while he muttered, "A year and a half. Totally fuckin' missed out.
Kristen Ashley (Mystery Man (Dream Man, #1))
A good quit feels powerful. Deciding what you won’t have in your life is as important as deciding what you will have. Trying out something you expect to love, realizing you don’t really love it, and giving it back, that takes guts.
Mary Laura Philpott (I Miss You When I Blink: Essays)
maybe we try too hard to be remembered, waking to the glowing yellow disc in ignorance, swearing that today will be the day, today we will make something of our lives. what if we are so busy searching for worth that we miss the sapphire sky and cackling blackbird. what else is missing? maybe our steps are too straight and our paths too narrow and not overlapping. maybe when they overlap someone in another country lights a candle, a couple resolves their argument, a young man puts down his silver gun and walks away.
Naomi Shihab Nye (Time You Let Me In: 25 Poets under 25)
You rarely know, in the moment, when it's the last time you'll do something. Most of the time, the whole thing just sneaks away in the night, never to be seen or heard from again, not even sending back so much as a postcard to say hello.
Michelle Cuevas (Beyond the Laughing Sky)
That’s the thing about intimacy and truly knowing the person you’re with. They always know when something’s off, no matter how casually you try to sweep your unease away. They know. It’s their job, because in the song of your life, they are the ones listening. It’s when they stop that you need to worry. He’d listened to mine. He knew when a beat was missing, or a note was forgotten. He’d memorized my song, and I was his favorite.
Kate Stewart (Drive (The Bittersweet Symphony Duet #1))
Do you know when they say soulmates? Everybody uses it in personal ads. “Soul mate wanted.” It doesn’t mean too much now. But soulmates – think about it. When your soul – whatever that is anyway – something so alive when you make music or love and so mysteriously hidden most of the rest of the time, so colorful and big but without color or shape – when your soul finds another soul it can recognize even before the rest of you knows about it. The rest of you just feels sweaty and jumpy at first. And your souls get married without even meaning to – even if you can’t be together for some reason in real life, your souls just go ahead and make the wedding plans. A soul’s wedding must be too beautiful to even look at. It must be blinding. It must be like all the weddings in the world – gondolas with canopies of doves, champagne glasses shattering, wings of veils, drums beating, flutes and trumpets, showers of roses. And after that happens you know – that’s it. This is it.
Francesca Lia Block (Missing Angel Juan (Weetzie Bat, #4))
I will miss my chest exploding you coming home late not turning on the light always waking me up I will miss the sudden burst of safety when you look at me or hold my hand or say something like ”let’s go home” I will miss the years I lost on something or someone. The pieces didn’t fit, shaped wrong the timing slightly off. I loved you like I always will.
Charlotte Eriksson
The culture doesn't encourage you to think about such things until you're about to die. We're so wrapped up with egostical things, career, family, having enough money, meeting the mortgage, getting a new car, fixing the radiator when it breaks. We're involved in trillions of little acts just to keep going . So we don't get into the habit of standing back and looking at our lives and saying, Is this all? Is this all I want? Is something missing?
Morrie Schwartz
I'm in a weird-ass mood today, Doc. Wired up, mind all over the place, looking for answers, reasons something solid to cling to, something real, but just when I think I've got it figured out and neatly filed under fixed instead of fucked, turns out I'm still shattered, scattered, and battered. But you probably already knew that, didn't you?...You might not be able to help me. That makes me sad, but not for me. It makes me sad for you. It must be frustrating for a shrink to have a patient who's beyond fixing. That first shrink I saw when I got back to Clayton Falls told me no one is a lost cause, but I think that's bullshit. I think people can be so crushed, so broken, that they'll never be anything more than a fragment of a whole person. (129)
Chevy Stevens (Still Missing)
I think she's afraid to even hug me now. It's my fault, but I miss it, Andrew. I miss it so much it aches sometimes, you know?' I do know. I do know, I want to tell him, but I let him talk. And he does, with a gut-wrenching honesty that tears at my heart. 'I want to be held. Is that so wrong? I want to be held, and stroked. I want to know that someone loves me. I want to feel it on my skin.' He looks at the ceiling and exhales, then meets my eyes again. 'But nobody touches me anymore. Not even when I have a fever. Mom just hands me a thermometer now.' He drops his eyes and his ears redden. 'Even when you kiss me, you don't touch me. It's like I'm a leper or something. I can hardly keep my hands off of you, but it's not the same for you, is it?
J.H. Trumble (Where You Are)
You know what he said? He said that being away from me is less like being away from a person than being away from other people is. I don't know anyone else who would say something like that. And he was right. When we were apart, I missed him all the time, but he didn't feel faraway. He felt closer than the kids at school."... Certain people are like that, I guess. They're together no matter where they are. They just belong to each other.
Marisa de los Santos (Belong to Me (Love Walked In, #2))
When you are bored, restless, longing for something more, unfulfilled, feeling like you've settled, haunted by the sense of being trapped in your own life, these are the deep waters of your soul speaking to you, telling you something is wrong, something is missing, something needs to change.
Rob Bell (How to Be Here: A Guide to Creating a Life Worth Living)
It's something to have someone who misses you when you're gone. And it's something to have someone who fights to get you back.
Dan Gemeinhart (The Remarkable Journey of Coyote Sunrise)
I hate the thought of someone never being missed,' said Ianto sadly. 'It's the ultimate humiliation, surely. So unimportant in life that no one even notices when you die.
Trevor Baxendale (Something in the Water (Torchwood, #4))
I don’t miss anyone. If I did I would do something about it. Besides, some people come back...in dreams. That’s when they’re honest.
Donna Lynn Hope
Because..." he sighed, "You, make me laugh, you challenge me, you turn me on like no else can. I feel like I'm missing something really important when you're gone. So important I don't feel like myself. I've never felt like someone was mine before. But your mine, Jocelyn. I've known that from the moment we met. And I'm yours. I don't want to be anybody else's, babe.
Samantha Young
Let's hope I come when you are busy doing something you want to live for. Let us hope I come when you are doing something you would die for, and let's hope that if you kill yourself, you are well over 40 years old, because to kill yourself before age 40 is like murdering a stranger,
Salena Godden (Mrs Death Misses Death)
Walking around, even on a bad day, I would see things – I mean just the things that were in front of me. People’s faces, the weather, traffic. The smell of petrol from the garage, the feeling of being rained on, completely ordinary things. And in that way even the bad days were good, because I felt them and remembered feeling them. There was something delicate about living like that – like I was an instrument and the world touched me and reverberated inside me. After a couple of months, I started to miss days. Sometimes I would fall asleep without remembering to write anything, but then other nights I’d open the book and not know what to write – I wouldn’t be able to think of anything at all. When I did make entries, they were increasingly verbal and abstract: song titles, or quotes from novels, or text messages from friends. By spring I couldn’t keep it up anymore. I started to put the diary away for weeks at a time – it was just a cheap black notebook I got at work – and then eventually I’d take it back out to look at the entries from the previous year. At that point, I found it impossible to imagine ever feeling again as I had apparently once felt about rain or flowers. It wasn’t just that I failed to be delighted by sensory experiences – it was that I didn’t actually seem to have them anymore. I would walk to work or go out for groceries or whatever and by the time I came home again I wouldn’t be able to remember seeing or hearing anything distinctive at all. I suppose I was seeing but not looking – the visual world just came to me flat, like a catalogue of information. I never looked at things anymore, in the way I had before.
Sally Rooney (Beautiful World, Where Are You)
Everybody asks why I started at the end and worked back to the beginning, the reason is simple, I couldn't understand the beginning until I had reached the end. There were too many pieces of the puzzle missing, too much you would never tell. I could sell these things. People want to buy them, but I'd set all this on fire first. She'd like that, that's what she would do. She'd make it just to burn it. I couldn't afford this one, but the beginning deserves something special. But how do I show that nothing, not a taste, not a smell, not even the color of the sky, has ever been as clear and sharp as it was when I belonged to her. I don't know how to express the being with someone so dangerous is the last time I felt safe... (White Oleander)
Janet Fitch
You failed me. His brother’s voice, louder than ever in his head. You let him dupe you all over again. Kaz had called Jesper by his brother’s name. A bad slip. But maybe he’d wanted to punish them both. Kaz was older now than Jordie had been when he’d succumbed to the Queen’s Lady Plague. Now he could look back and see his brother’s pride, his hunger for fast success. You failed me, Jordie. You were older. You were supposed to be the smart one. He thought of Inej asking, Was there no one to protect you? He remembered Jordie seated beside him on a bridge, smiling and alive, the reflection of their feet in the water beneath them, the warmth of a cup of hot chocolate cradled in his mittened hands. We were supposed to look out for each other. They’d been two farm boys, missing their father, lost in this city. That was how Pekka got them. It wasn’t just the enticement of money. He’d given them a new home. A fake wife who made them hutspot, a fake daughter for Kaz to play with. Pekka Rollins had lured them with a warm fire and the promise of the life they’d lost. And that was what destroyed you in the end: the longing for something you could never have.
Leigh Bardugo (Crooked Kingdom (Six of Crows, #2))
Dear Camryn, I never wanted it to be this way. I wanted to tell you these things myself, but I was afraid. I was afraid that if I told you out loud that I loved you, that what we had together would die with me. The truth is that I knew in Kansas that you were the one. I’ve loved you since that day when I first looked up into your eyes as you glared down at me from over the top of that bus seat. Maybe I didn’t know it then, but I knew something had happened to me in that moment and I could never let you go. I have never lived the way I lived during my short time with you. For the first time in my life, I’ve felt whole, alive, free. You were the missing piece of my soul, the breath in my lungs, the blood in my veins. I think that if past lives are real then we have been lovers in every single one of them. I’ve known you for a short time, but I feel like I’ve known you forever. I want you to know that even in death I’ll always remember you. I’ll always love you. I wish that things could’ve turned out differently. I thought of you many nights on the road. I stared up at the ceiling in the motels and pictured what our life might be like together if I had lived. I even got all mushy and thought of you in a wedding dress and even with a mini me in your belly. You know, I always heard that sex is great when you’re pregnant. ;-) But I’m sorry that I had to leave you, Camryn. I’m so sorry…I wish the story of Orpheus and Eurydice was real because then you could come to the Underworld and sing me back into your life. I wouldn’t look back. I wouldn’t fuck it up like Orpheus did. I’m so sorry, baby… I want you to promise me that you’ll stay strong and beautiful and sweet and caring. I want you to be happy and find someone who will love you as much as I did. I want you to get married and have babies and live your life. Just remember to always be yourself and don’t be afraid to speak your mind or to dream out loud. I hope you’ll never forget me. One more thing: don’t feel bad for not telling me that you loved me. You didn’t need to say it. I knew all along that you did. Love Always, Andrew Parrish
J.A. Redmerski
Because if you don’t know how good something can be, you don’t know how bad you’ll miss it when it was gone.
Kristen Ashley (Lady Luck (Colorado Mountain, #3))
How can you miss something, feel so awful about it, when you're not sure you had it in the first place?
Alexandra Bracken (Sparks Rise (The Darkest Minds #2.5))
And confessions of love have always seemed out of place when you’re gasping for air, when you’re begging for pain, when you’re missing something, unable to change the channel.
Kris Kidd (Down for Whatever)
When something tragic has happened, you'll find that you, the tragicee, become the person that has to make everything comfortable for everyone else.... As a tragicee and future divorcee, you'll also find that people will question you on the biggest decisions you've ever made in your life as though you hadn't thought about them at all before – as though, through their twenty questions and dubious faces, they're going to shine light on something that you missed the hundredth time around during your darkest hours.
Cecelia Ahern
His mind’s always on something else. He’d live in a ratty cardigan, and he’s always worrying holes in the pockets of his pants. He can never seem to find his wallet or anything in the refrigerator. And just when you think he’s not paying any attention to what you’re saying or doing, he comes up with exactly the right answer or solution.”", [J.D. Robb, Celebrity In Death"“People""who expect perfection in a mate miss a lot of fun—and sweetness.", [J.D. Robb, Celebrity In Death]
J.D. Robb (Celebrity in Death (In Death, #34))
[M]ost people go through life a wee bit disappointed in themselves. I think we all keep a memory of a moment when we missed someone or something, when we could have gone down another path, a happier or better or just a different path. Just because they're in the past doesn't mean you can't treasure the possibilities ... maybe we put down a marker for another time. And now's the time. Now we can do whatever we want to do.
James Robertson (And the Land Lay Still)
When I got out of the movie, I had four text messages from Augustus. Tell me my copy is missing the last twenty pages or something. Hazel Grace, tell me I have not reached the end of this book. OH MY GOD DO THEY GET MARRIED OR NOT OH MY GOD WHAT IS THIS I guess Anna died and so it just ends? CRUEL. Call me when you can. Hope all’s okay.
John Green (The Fault in Our Stars)
All these years I thought a piece of my life was missing. But it was there all along. It was there when I sat beside you in your car and you began to drive. It was there when I sang backwards and you laughed or I made a picnic and you ate every crumb. It was there when you told me you liked my brown suit, when you opened the door for me, when you asked once if I would like to take the long road home. It came later in my garden. When I looked at the sun and saw it glow on my hands. When a rosebud appeared where there had not been one before. It was in the people who stopped and talked of this and that over the garden wall. And just when I thought my life was done, it came time and time again at the hospice. It has been everywhere, my happiness – when my mother sang for me to dance, when my father took my hand to keep me safe – but it was such a small, plain thing that I mistook it for something ordinary and failed to see. We expect our happiness to come with a sign and bells, but it doesn’t.
Rachel Joyce (The Love Song of Miss Queenie Hennessy (Harold Fry, #2))
Fear is crippling. Fear of the future can convince us that there is no way out and nothing is ever going to get better. Fear is blinding; it can make us miss the warning signs flashing right in front of our eyes. It can also make you miss those brilliant flashes of color, when the world isn’t so gray. But, if you think about it, being afraid isn’t such a bad thing. Because fear is a reminder that you still have something to lose. Something worth holding onto.
Cassia Leo (Black Box)
Aren’t you forgetting something?” – Acheron “What?” – Artemis “Your payment.” – Acheron “The happiness on your face when first you touched him was enough. I only wish you’d been there when your daughter was born, but that was my fault. I’ve had a lifetime of joy, hugs and love from her and you missed all of that because of my stupidity and fear. His life is my gift to both of you. Let’s hope the future is much kinder to all of us than the past has been.” – Artemis
Sherrilyn Kenyon (Retribution (Dark-Hunter, #19))
And we offer each other words of consolation or distraction or encouragement when we see that one or the other of us is in need of such words. We also miss each other (vaguely) when we're not together, she's one of those people (in everyone's life there are four or five such people whose loss one truly feels) to whom you're used to telling everything that happens to you, that is, one of those people you think about when something happens to you, be it funny or dramatic, and for whom you store up events and anecdotes. You accept misfortunes gladly because you know you can tell those five people about them afterwards.
Javier Marías (A Heart So White)
Excuse me? Did I miss something? What has ever been romantic about vomit? “A man standing by your side when you’re sick. Holding your hair back from your face… that’s romantic.” “In what alternate universe do you live? Here in a place I like to call reality, that’s disgusting. Who in their right mind would find that romantic?
Sherrilyn Kenyon (Devil May Cry (Dark-Hunter, #11))
There’s something so beautiful about people who are heartbroken; they think about how they’re feeling much more. I think when you’re happy and when you’re in love, you don’t need to think about it, it’s just there. Love is one of those things that is so simple, you don’t need to think about it when it’s good, you only need to think about it when it’s bad, so when music is all that you have and you’re lonely or you’re missing someone and you write a song that says exactly how you feel, there is sort of a gratification you get from that, it almost helps you move on.
Taylor Swift
However much you have been wanting and hoping and dreaming of meeting the person of your dreams, it is only when you meet them that you will start missing them. It seems that the presence of an object is required to make its absence felt (or to make the absence of something felt). A kind of longing may have preceded their arrival, but you have to meet in order to feel the full force of your frustration in their absence.
Adam Phillips (Missing Out: In Praise of the Unlived Life)
Jace, you don’t have to—” “I was trying to go…somewhere,” Jace said. “But I kept getting pulled back here. I couldn’t stop walking, couldn’t stop thinking. About the first time I ever saw you, and how after that I couldn’t forget you. I wanted to, but I couldn’t stop myself. I forced Hodge to let me be the one who came to find you and bring you back to the Institute. And even back then, in that stupid coffee shop, when I saw you sitting on that couch with Simon, even then that felt wrong to me—I should have been the one sitting with you. The one who made you laugh like that. I couldn’t get rid of that feeling. That it should have been me. And the more I knew you, the more I felt it—it had never been like that for me before. I’d always wanted a girl and then gotten to know her and not wanted her anymore, but with you the feeling just got stronger and stronger until that night when you showed up at Renwick’s and I knew. “And then to find out that the reason I felt like that—like you were some part of me I’d lost and never even knew I was missing until I saw you again—that the reason was that you were my sister, it felt like some sort of cosmic joke. Like God was spitting on me. I don’t even know for what—for thinking that I could actually get to have you, that I would deserve something like that, to be that happy. I couldn’t imagine what it was I’d done that I was being punished for—” “If you’re being punished,” Clary said, “then so am I.
Cassandra Clare (City of Glass (The Mortal Instruments, #3))
Be blessed. And just as you are transforming your own life, may you transform the lives of those around you. When they ask, do not forget to give. When they knock at your door, be sure to open it. When they lose something and come to you, do whatever you can to help them find what they have lost. First, though, ask; knock at the door and find what is missing in your life. A hunter always knows what to expect - eat or be eaten.
Paulo Coelho (Aleph)
I wonder why I miss her and Dex does not. Perhaps it is because I've known her so much longer. Or maybe it's the very nature of a friendship versus an intimate relationship. When you are in a relationship, you are aware that it might end. You grow apart, find someone else, simply fall out of love. But a friendship isn't a zero-sum game, and as such, you assume it will last forever, especially an old friendship. You take its permanence for granted, which might be the very thing so dear about it.
Emily Giffin (Something Borrowed (Darcy & Rachel, #1))
You must miss your father terribly, I know. Lord Eddard was a brave man, honest and loyal...but quite a hopeless player.' He brought the seed to his mouth with the knife. 'In King's Landing, there are two sorts of people The players and the pieces.' 'And I was a piece?' She dreaded the answer. 'Yes, but don't let that trouble you. You're still half a child. Every man's a piece to start with, and every maid as well. Even some who think they are players.' He at another seed. 'Cersei, for one. She thinks herself sly, but in truth she is utterly predictable. her strength rests on her beauty, birth, and riches. Only the first of those is truly her own, and it will soon desert her. I pity her then. She wants power, but has no notion what to do with it when she gets it. Everyone wants something, Alayne. And when you know what a man wants you know who he is, and how to move him.
George R.R. Martin (A Storm of Swords (A Song of Ice and Fire, #3))
Here's the thing, say Shug. The thing I believe. God is inside you and inside everybody else. You come into the world with God. But only them that search for it inside find it. And sometimes it just manifest itself even if you not looking, or don't know what you looking for. Trouble do it for most folks, I think. Sorrow, lord. Feeling like shit. It? I ast. Yeah, It. God ain't a he or a she, but a It. But what do it look like? I ast. Don't look like nothing, she say. It ain't a picture show. It ain't something you can look at apart from anything else, including yourself. I believe God is everything, say Shug. Everything that is or ever was or ever will be. And when you can feel that, and be happy to feel that, you've found It. Shug a beautiful something, let me tell you. She frown a little, look out cross the yard, lean back in her chair, look like a big rose. She say, My first step from the old white man was trees. Then air. Then birds. Then other people. But one day when I was sitting quiet and feeling like a motherless child, which I was, it come to me: that feeling of being part of everything, not separate at all. I knew that if I cut a tree, my arm would bleed. And I laughed and I cried and I run all around the house. I knew just what it was. In fact, when it happen, you can't miss it. It sort of like you know what, she say, grinning and rubbing high up on my thigh. Shug! I say. Oh, she say. God love all them feelings. That's some of the best stuff God did. And when you know God loves 'em you enjoys 'em a lot more. You can just relax, go with everything that's going, and praise God by liking what you like. God don't think it dirty? I ast. Naw, she say. God made it. Listen, God love everything you love? and a mess of stuff you don't. But more than anything else, God love admiration. You saying God vain? I ast. Naw, she say. Not vain, just wanting to share a good thing. I think it pisses God off if you walk by the color purple in a field somewhere and don't notice it. What it do when it pissed off? I ast. Oh, it make something else. People think pleasing God is all God care about. But any fool living in the world can see it always trying to please us back. Yeah? I say. Yeah, she say. It always making little surprises and springing them on us when us least expect. You mean it want to be loved, just like the bible say. Yes, Celie, she say. Everything want to be loved. Us sing and dance, make faces and give flower bouquets, trying to be loved. You ever notice that trees do everything to git attention we do, except walk? Well, us talk and talk bout God, but I'm still adrift. Trying to chase that old white man out of my head. I been so busy thinking bout him I never truly notice nothing God make. Not a blade of corn (how it do that?) not the color purple (where it come from?). Not the little wildflowers. Nothing. Now that my eyes opening, I feels like a fool. Next to any little scrub of a bush in my yard, Mr. ____s evil sort of shrink. But not altogether. Still, it is like Shug say, You have to git man off your eyeball, before you can see anything a'tall. Man corrupt everything, say Shug. He on your box of grits, in your head, and all over the radio. He try to make you think he everywhere. Soon as you think he everywhere, you think he God. But he ain't. Whenever you trying to pray, and man plop himself on the other end of it, tell him to git lost, say Shug. Conjure up flowers, wind,water, a big rock. But this hard work, let me tell you. He been there so long, he don't want to budge. He threaten lightening, floods and earthquakes. Us fight. I hardly pray at all. Every time I conjure up a rock, I throw it. Amen
Alice Walker (The Color Purple)
They'd had fun, for sure. They laughed and enjoyed being together. But if she was painfully honest with herself, something was missing. Something in the way Tim looked at her. She remembered her mom's word. "I saw the way he looked at you...he adores you." Maybe that was it. Tim looked at her on a surface level. He smiled and seemed happy to see her. But When Cody looked at her, there were no layers left, nothing her didn't reveal, nothing he couldn't see. He didn't really look at her so much as he looked into her. To the deepest, most real places in her heart and soul.
Karen Kingsbury (Take Two (Above the Line, #2))
Olga was nice, Olga was nice and loving, Olga loved him, he repeated to himself with a growing sadness as he also realised that nothing would ever happen between them again, life sometimes offers you a chance he thought, but when you are too cowardly or too indecisive to seize it life takes the cards away; there is a moment for doing things and entering a possible happiness, and this moment lasts a few days, a few weeks or even a few months, but it only happens once and one time only, and if you want to return to it later it's quite simply impossible. There's no more place for enthusiasm, belief and faith, and there remains just gentle resignation, a sad and reciprocal pity, the useless but correct sensation that something could have happened, that you just simply showed yourself unworthy of this gift you had been offered.
Michel Houellebecq (La carte et le territoire)
I opened the fire door to four lips none of which were mine kissing tightened my belt around my hips where your hands were missing and stepped out into the cold collar high under the slate grey sky the air was smoking and the streets were dry and I wasn't joking when I said Good Bye magazine quality men talking on the corner French, no less much less of them then us so why do I feel like something's been rearranged? you know, taken out of context I must seem so strange killed a cockroach so big it left a puddle of pus on the wall when you and I are lying in bed you don't seem so tall I'm singing now because my tear ducts are too tired and my brain is disconnected but my heart is wired I make such a good statistic someone should study me now somebody's got to be interested in how I feel just 'cause I'm here and I'm real oh, how I miss substituting the conclusion to confrontation with a kiss and oh, how I miss walking up to the edge and jumping in like I could feel the future on your skin I opened the fire door to four lips none of which were mine kissing I opened the fire door
Ani DiFranco
What if it came and didn’t let go, a sorrow that had come to stay, and did to me what longing for him had done on those nights when it seemed there was something so essential missing from my life that it might as well have been missing from my body, so that losing him now would be like losing a hand you could spot in every picture of yourself around the house, but without which you couldn’t possibly be you again. You lose it, as you always knew you would, and were even prepared to; but you can’t bring yourself to live with the loss. And hoping not to think of it, like praying not to dream of it, hurts just the same.
André Aciman (Call Me by Your Name)
Now he felt temper snapping at the nerves. “If you can’t be comfortable in the house while I’m not here, you can barricade yourself in this apartment. You can damn well barricade yourself in it while I am here. It’s up to you.” “Yes, it is.” She took a deep breath and turned to him. “You did this for me.” Annoyed, he inclined his head. “There doesn’t seem to be much I wouldn’t do for you.” “I think that’s starting to sink in.” No one had ever given her anything quite so perfect. No one, she realized, understood her quite so well. “That makes me a lucky woman, doesn’t it?” He opened his mouth, bit back something particularly nasty. “The hell with it,” he decided. “I have to go.” “Roarke, one thing.” She walked to him, well aware he was all but snarling with temper. “I haven’t kissed you good-bye,” she murmured and did so with a thoroughness that rocked him back on his heels. “Thank you.” Before he could speak, she kissed him again. “For always knowing what matters to me.” “You’re welcome.” Possessively, he ran a hand over her tousled hair. “Miss me.” “I already am.” “Don’t take any unnecessary chances.” His hands gripped in her hair hard, briefly. “There’s no use asking you not to take the necessary ones.” “Then don’t.” Her heart stuttered when he kissed her hand. “Safe trip,” she told him when he stepped into the elevator. She was new at it, so waited until the doors were almost shut. “I love you.” The last thing she saw was the flash of his grin.
J.D. Robb (Glory in Death (In Death, #2))
say she had nefarious motives.” Davis looked over at Jack with a bemused grin. “Nefarious. This is what we get when we hire a Yale boy.” “You missed sacrosanct earlier. And taciturn and glowering,” Jack said. “What’s glowering?” “Me, apparently.
Julie James (Something About You (FBI/US Attorney, #1))
In life, the question is not if you will have problems, but how you are going to deal with your problems. If the possibility of failure were erased, what would you attempt to achieve? The essence of man is imperfection. Know that you're going to make mistakes. The fellow who never makes a mistake takes his orders from one who does. Wake up and realize this: Failure is simply a price we pay to achieve success. Achievers are given multiple reasons to believe they are failures. But in spite of that, they persevere. The average for entrepreneurs is 3.8 failures before they finally make it in business. When achievers fail, they see it as a momentary event, not a lifelong epidemic. Procrastination is too high a price to pay for fear of failure. To conquer fear, you have to feel the fear and take action anyway. Forget motivation. Just do it. Act your way into feeling, not wait for positive emotions to carry you forward. Recognize that you will spend much of your life making mistakes. If you can take action and keep making mistakes, you gain experience. Life is playing a poor hand well. The greatest battle you wage against failure occurs on the inside, not the outside. Why worry about things you can't control when you can keep yourself busy controlling the things that depend on you? Handicaps can only disable us if we let them. If you are continually experiencing trouble or facing obstacles, then you should check to make sure that you are not the problem. Be more concerned with what you can give rather than what you can get because giving truly is the highest level of living. Embrace adversity and make failure a regular part of your life. If you're not failing, you're probably not really moving forward. Everything in life brings risk. It's true that you risk failure if you try something bold because you might miss it. But you also risk failure if you stand still and don't try anything new. The less you venture out, the greater your risk of failure. Ironically the more you risk failure — and actually fail — the greater your chances of success. If you are succeeding in everything you do, then you're probably not pushing yourself hard enough. And that means you're not taking enough risks. You risk because you have something of value you want to achieve. The more you do, the more you fail. The more you fail, the more you learn. The more you learn, the better you get. Determining what went wrong in a situation has value. But taking that analysis another step and figuring out how to use it to your benefit is the real difference maker when it comes to failing forward. Don't let your learning lead to knowledge; let your learning lead to action. The last time you failed, did you stop trying because you failed, or did you fail because you stopped trying? Commitment makes you capable of failing forward until you reach your goals. Cutting corners is really a sign of impatience and poor self-discipline. Successful people have learned to do what does not come naturally. Nothing worth achieving comes easily. The only way to fail forward and achieve your dreams is to cultivate tenacity and persistence. Never say die. Never be satisfied. Be stubborn. Be persistent. Integrity is a must. Anything worth having is worth striving for with all your might. If we look long enough for what we want in life we are almost sure to find it. Success is in the journey, the continual process. And no matter how hard you work, you will not create the perfect plan or execute it without error. You will never get to the point that you no longer make mistakes, that you no longer fail. The next time you find yourself envying what successful people have achieved, recognize that they have probably gone through many negative experiences that you cannot see on the surface. Fail early, fail often, but always fail forward.
John C. Maxwell (Failing Forward)
But now I gotta pay,' he said. To pay?' For my sin. That's why I'm here, right? Justice?' The Blue Man smiled. 'No, Edward. You are here so I can teach you something. All the people you meet here have one thing to teach you...That there are no random acts. That we are all connected. That you can no more seperate a breeze from the wind.' ...'It was my stupidity, running out there like that. Why should you have to die on account of me? It ain't fair.' The Blue Man held out his hand. 'Fairness,' he said, 'does not govern life and death. If it did, no good person would ever die young...Why people gather when others die? Why people feel they should? It is because the human spirit knows, deep down, that all lives intersect. That death doesn't just take someone, it misses someone else, and in the small distance between being taken and being missed, lives are changed. You say you should have died instead of me. But during my time on earth, people died instead of me, too. It happens every day. When lightning strikes a minute after you are gone, or an airplane crashes that you might have been on. When your colleague falls ill and you do not. We think such things are random. But there is a balance to it all. One withers, another grows. Birth and death are part of a whole.' ... 'I still don't understand,' Eddie whispered. 'What good came from your death?' You lived,' the Blue Man answered. But we barely knew each other. I might as well have been a stranger.' The Blue Man put his arms on Eddie's shoulders. Eddie felt that warm, melting sensation. Strangers,' the Blue Man said, 'are just family have yet to come to know.
Mitch Albom (The Five People You Meet in Heaven)
When you attempt a memoir, I am told, you need to be in an orphan state. So what is missing in you, and the things you have grown cautious and hesitant about, will come almost casually towards you. "A memoir is the lost inheritance," you realize, so that during this time you must learn how and where to look. In the resulting self-portrait everything will rhyme, because everything has been reflected. If a gesture was flung away in the past, you now see it in the possession of another. So I believed something in my mother must rhyme in me. She in her small hall of mirrors and I in mine.
Michael Ondaatje (Warlight)
No one likes sarcasm, Miss Cain. I’ve merely delayed my exit to promise you something. You took my straight razor, li’l darlin’. That I view as an unforgivable offense. So when the time comes, when you have served your purpose, I swear to you I’m gonna kill you for free.” And with that, Billy-Ray Sanguine disappeared into the ground. Then he popped his head back up. “Or at least half price.” And he was gone again.
Derek Landy (Playing with Fire (Skulduggery Pleasant, #2))
Missing once is an accident. Missing twice is the start of a new habit. This is a distinguishing feature between winners and losers. Anyone can have a bad performance, a bad workout, or a bad day at work. But when successful people fail, they rebound quickly. The breaking of a habit doesn’t matter if the reclaiming of it is fast. I think this principle is so important that I’ll stick to it even if I can’t do a habit as well or as completely as I would like. Too often, we fall into an all-or-nothing cycle with our habits. The problem is not slipping up; the problem is thinking that if you can’t do something perfectly, then you shouldn’t do it at all.
James Clear (Atomic Habits: An Easy & Proven Way to Build Good Habits & Break Bad Ones)
It is as if, oddly, you were waiting for someone but you didn’t know who they were until they arrived. Whether or not you were aware that there was something missing in your life, you will be when you meet the person you want. What psychoanalysis will add to this love story is that the person you fall in love with really is the man or woman of your dreams; that you have dreamed them up before you met them; not out of nothing — nothing comes of nothing — but out of prior experience, both real and wished for. You recognize them with such certainty because you already, in a certain sense, know them; and because you have quite literally been expecting them, you feel as though you have known them for ever, and yet, at the same time, they are quite foreign to you. They are familiar foreign bodies.
Adam Phillips (Missing Out: In Praise of the Unlived Life)
I think a lot of people quit pursuing creative lives because they’re scared of the word interesting. My favorite meditation teacher, Pema Chödrön, once said that the biggest problem she sees with people’s meditation practice is that they quit just when things are starting to get interesting. Which is to say, they quit as soon as things aren’t easy anymore, as soon as it gets painful, or boring, or agitating. They quit as soon as they see something in their minds that scares them or hurts them. So they miss the good part, the wild part, the transformative part—the part when you push past the difficulty and enter into some raw new unexplored universe within yourself. And maybe it’s like that with every important aspect of your life. Whatever it is you are pursuing, whatever it is you are seeking, whatever it is you are creating, be careful not to quit too soon. As my friend Pastor Rob Bell warns: “Don’t rush through the experiences and circumstances that have the most capacity to transform you.” Don’t let go of your courage the moment things stop being easy or rewarding. Because that moment? That’s the moment when interesting begins.
Elizabeth Gilbert (Big Magic: Creative Living Beyond Fear)
You see, because [Norfolk is] stuck out here on the east, on this hump jutting into the sea, it's not on the way to anywhere. People going north and south, they bypass it altogether. For that reason, it's a peaceful corner of England, rather nice. But it's also something of a lost corner.' Someone claimed after the lesson that Miss Emily had said Norfolk was England's 'lost corner' because that was were all the lost property found in the country ended up. Ruth said one evening, looking out at the sunset, that 'when we lost something precious, and we'd looked and looked and still couldn't find it, then we didn't have to be completely heartbroken. We still had that last bit of comfort, thinking one day, when we were grown up, and we were free to travel the country, we could always go and find it again in Norfolk.
Kazuo Ishiguro (Never Let Me Go)
The last time you came to see me there were anchors in your eyes, hardback books in your posture. You were the five star general of sureness, a crisp white tuxedo of a man. I was fiddling with my worn coat pockets, puffing false confidence ghosts in the cold January air. My hands were shitty champagne flutes brimming with cheap merlot. I couldn’t touch you without ruining you, so I didn’t touch you at all. It’s when you’re on the brink of something that you lose your balance. You told me that once. When I can’t bring myself to say what I need to, my heart plays Russian Roulette with my throat. I swear I fired that night, but, nothing. Someday, I’ll show you the bullet I had for you, after time has done the wash. I’ll take it out of the jar of missed opportunities. We’ll hold it up to the light. You’ll roll it around your mouth like a fallen tooth. You won’t forgive me exactly, but we’ll laugh about how small it is. We’ll wonder how such a little thing could ever have meant so much.
Mindy Nettifee
Mal. I never really fit in the way that you did. I never really belonged anywhere.” “You belonged with me,” he said quietly. “No, Mal. Not really. Not for a long time.” He looked at me then, and his eyes were deep blue in the twilight. “Did you miss me, Alina? Did you miss me when you were gone?” “Every day,” I said honestly. “I missed you every hour. And you know what the worst part was? It caught me completely by surprise. I’d catch myself walking around to find you, not for any reason, just out of habit, because I’d seen something that I wanted to tell you about or because I wanted to hear your voice. And then I’d realize that you weren’t there anymore, and every time, every single time, it was like having the wind knocked out of me. I’ve risked my life for you. I’ve walked half the length of Ravka for you, and I’d do it again and again and again just to be with you, just to starve with you and freeze with you and hear you complain about hard cheese every day. So don’t tell me we don’t belong together,” he said fiercely. He was very close now, and my heart was suddenly hammering in my chest. “I’m sorry it took me so long to see you, Alina. But I see you now.
Leigh Bardugo (Shadow and Bone (The Shadow and Bone Trilogy, #1))
I reckon we could all use an opportunity to endear ourselves to our wives." He looked to Rycliff and Thorne. "When's the last time you did something heroic for your lady?" Rycliff smirked. "Last night." Thorne drained his tankard and cracked his neck. "This morning." "I didn't mean in bed," Colin said. Under his breath he added, "Braggarts.
Tessa Dare (Lord Dashwood Missed Out (Spindle Cove, #4.5))
THE DAY YOU READ THIS On this day, you read something that moved you and made you realise there were no more fears to fear. No tears to cry. No head to hang in shame. That every time you thought you’d offended someone, it was all just in your head and really, they love you with all their heart and nothing will ever change that. That everyone and everything lives on inside you. That that doesn’t make any of it any less real. That soft touches will change you and stay with you longer than hard ones. That being alone means you’re free. That old lovers miss you and new lovers want you and the one you’re with is the one you’re meant to be with. That the tingles running down your arms are angel feathers and they whisper in your ear, constantly, if you choose to hear them. That everything you want to happen, will happen, if you decide you want it enough. That every time you think a sad thought, you can think a happy one instead. That you control that completely. That the people who make you laugh are more beautiful than beautiful people. That you laugh more than you cry. That crying is good for you. That the people you hate wish you would stop and you do too. That your friends are reflections of the best parts of you. That you are more than the sum total of the things you know and how you react to them. That dancing is sometimes more important than listening to the music. That the most embarrassing, awkward moments of your life are only remembered by you and no one else. That no one judges you when you walk into a room and all they really want to know, is if you’re judging them. That what you make and what you do with your time is more important than you’ll ever fathom and should be treated as such. That the difference between a job and art is passion. That neither defines who you are. That talking to strangers is how you make friends. That bad days end but a smile can go around the world. That life contradicts itself, constantly. That that’s why it’s worth living. That the difference between pain and love is time. That love is only as real as you want it to be. That if you feel good, you look good but it doesn’t always work the other way around. That the sun will rise each day and it’s up to you each day if you match it. That nothing matters up until this point. That what you decide now, in this moment, will change the future. Forever. That rain is beautiful. And so are you.
pleasefindthis (I Wrote This For You)
Jules: Emma? You haven't said anything since we left the church. Emma: You're in love with me. Still. Jules: What are you talking about? Emma: I thought you didn't love me anymore. But that isn't true, is it? Jules: Why are you saying that? Why now? Emma: Because of the church. Because of what happened. We burned a church down, Julian, we melted stone. Jules: What does that have to do with anyhing? Emma: It has everything to do with. You don't understand. You can't. Jules: You're right. I don't understand. I don't understand any of it, Emma. I don't understand why you suddenly decided you didn't want me, you wanted Mark, and then you decided you didn't wnat him either and you dropped him like he was nothing, in fron of everyone. What the hell were you thinking ... Emma: What do you care? What do you care how I feel about Mark? Jules: Because I needed you to love him. Because if you threw me away and everything we had, it had better be for something that meant more to you, it had better be for something real, but maybe none of this is ever real to you ... Emma: Not real to me? You don't know what you're talking about, Julian Blackthron! You don't know what I've given up, what my reasons are for anything, you don't know what I'm trying to do ... Jules: What you're trying to do? How about you did do? How about breaking my heart and breaking Cameron's and breaking Mark's? What, am I missing someone else, some other person whose life you want to wreck forever? Emma: Your life isn't wrecked. You're still alive. You can have a good life! You kissed that faerie girl... Jules: She was a leanansidhe! A shape-shifter! I thought se was you! Emma: Oh. Oh. Jules: Yes, oh. You really think I'm going to fall in love with someon else? You think I get to do that? I'm not you, I don't geet to fall in love every week with someone different. I wish it wasn't you, Emma, but it is, it'll always be you, so don't tell me life isn't wrecked when you don't know the first thing about it!
Cassandra Clare (Lord of Shadows (The Dark Artifices, #2))
You have a great shift." I tell him. "I'll see you around. It's a good thing we're not friends, or else maybe I'd miss you. Or something more than friends-it's a good thing we weren't going out, or I'd be gutted right now. But, you know, we're not. Going out. Obviously. It's so obvious. I'm not sure why I didn't get the memo on that. Maybe it was all the phone sex, addling my stupid female brain. Or, hell, maybe it was all those hours we spent at the bakery, hanging out, or that time when I slept in your bed and cried on your lap on the bathroom floor. I just got confused about what we are. I didn't get the memo.
Robin York (Deeper (Caroline & West, #1))
What a job, to raise someone from birth to adulthood, bestowing upon them your knowledge and your values and, despite your best intentions, any number of traits you've inherited yourself. What a loaded task, to make every move, every day, in such a way that the impressionable larva-person in your home will see your example, process it into something with herself, and grow layers of muscle and soul over it until she is a fully developed human being. And all the while, the little person you're nurturing is fighting you - spitting out the broccoli, not wearing the helmet, rolling her eyes at your carefully chosen words of advice - and you become constantly worn down even as you pour your energies into loving her.
Mary Laura Philpott (I Miss You When I Blink: Essays)
I’ll teach you how to decipher all the confused faces by closing your eyes & how to cringe when someone says the words ‘your generation’. I will teach you how not to demonise your enemies & how to make yourself unappetising when the hordes turn up to eat you. I’ll teach you how to yell with your mouth closed & how to steal happiness & how the only real joy is singing yourself hoarse & nude girls & how never to eat in an empty restaurant & how not to leave the windows of your heart open when it looks like rain & how everyone has a stump where something necessary was amputated. I’ll teach you how to know what’s missing.
Steve Toltz (A Fraction of the Whole)
P.S. Nothing personal, but I think this journal assignment is a waste of time. I know I have to do something to make up for all the work I'm missing at school, but I HATE busywork. And that's what this journal thing is. Half the teachers at school assign work they never read. When we get stupid assignments like that, I always write somewhere on my paper "blah blah blah" or "I bet you're not even reading this," are you? or "Give me a sign if you're reading this." They never are.
Kate Klise (Trial by Journal)
Hey. Just to make sure I beat everyone to it, I wanted to write in this first. I hope that’s some more proof of how much I’m in love with you. I still can’t believe it. How did three years go by so fast? It feels like yesterday I was sitting on the bus behind you trying to build the courage to say something. It’s crazy to think there was a time before we knew each other. A time before “Sam and Julie.” Or “Julie and Sam”? I’ll let you decide that one. I know you can’t wait to leave this place, but I’m gonna miss it. I get it, though. Your ideas were always too big for a small town, and everyone here knows it. But I’m happy your path somehow made you stop in Ellensburg along the way. So you and I could meet each other. Maybe it was supposed to happen, you know? I feel like my life didn’t start until I met you, Julie. You’re the best thing to happen to this small town. To me. I realize it doesn’t matter where we’re going next, as long as we’re together. I’ll be honest. I used to be scared of leaving home. Now I can’t wait to move on and make new memories with you. Just don’t forget the ones we made here. Especially when you make it big. And whatever happens, promise you won’t forget me, okay? Anyway, I love you, Julie, and always will. Yours forever, Sam
Dustin Thao (You've Reached Sam)
Elsewhere there are no mobile phones. Elsewhere sleep is deep and the mornings are wonderful. Elsewhere art is endless, exhibitions are free and galleries are open twenty-four hours a day. Elsewhere alcohol is a joke that everybody finds funny. Elsewhere everybody is as welcoming as they’d be if you’d come home after a very long time away and they’d really missed you. Elsewhere nobody stops you in the street and says, are you a Catholic or a Protestant, and when you say neither, I’m a Muslim, then says yeah but are you a Catholic Muslim or a Protestant Muslim? Elsewhere there are no religions. Elsewhere there are no borders. Elsewhere nobody is a refugee or an asylum seeker whose worth can be decided about by a government. Elsewhere nobody is something to be decided about by anybody. Elsewhere there are no preconceptions. Elsewhere all wrongs are righted. Elsewhere the supermarkets don’t own us. Elsewhere we use our hands for cups and the rivers are clean and drinkable. Elsewhere the words of the politicians are nourishing to the heart. Elsewhere charlatans are known for their wisdom. Elsewhere history has been kind. Elsewhere nobody would ever say the words bring back the death penalty. Elsewhere the graves of the dead are empty and their spirits fly above the cities in instinctual, shapeshifting formations that astound the eye. Elsewhere poems cancel imprisonment. Elsewhere we do time differently. Every time I travel, I head for it. Every time I come home, I look for it.
Ali Smith (Public Library and Other Stories)
But you're so easy to sneak up on." He crossed his arms, leaning back against the wall. "You should be honored that I bother, since there's no challenge to it." "Right," I said dryly. Tybalt has never made a secret of his contempt for changelings in general and me in particular. Not even the years I spent missing could change that. If anything, it made things worse, because when I came back, I promptly removed myself from all the places he was accustomed to finding me. Hating me suddenly took effort - an effort he's proved annoying glad to make. On the other hand, it's actually been something of a relief, because it is something I can count on. Dawn comes, the moon rises and Tybalt hates me.
Seanan McGuire (Rosemary and Rue (October Daye, #1))
I don't get as much fan mail as an actor or singer would, but when I get a letter 99% of the time it's pointing out something that really had an impact. Like after 'My Own Private Rodeo' all these people wrote to me and said Dale's dad inspired them to come out. And this was when it was still illegal to be gay in Texas and a few other states. Another one that really stuck with me was this girl who survived Columbine. See, "Wings of the Dope," the episode where Luanne's boyfriend comes back as an angel, aired two weeks after the shooting. About a month after that, I got a letter from a girl who was there and hid somewhere in the school when it was all going on. She said the first thing she was gonna do if she survived was tell a friend of hers she was in love with him. She never did. He ended up being one of the kids responsible for it. So you can imagine how - you know, to her, it felt wrong to grieve almost, and she bottled it up. But she saw that episode and Buckley walking away at the end and something just let her finally break down and greive and miss the guy. I remember she quoted Luanne - 'I wonder if he's guardianing some other girl,' or something along that line, because she never had the guts to tell the kid. That really gets to people at Comic Con.
Mike Judge
How many toes did I have when we left London, does anyone remember?" Jim asked, examining its feet. "I think one is missing." "Stop fussing about a missing toe. We have more important things to focus on, like finding Drake and saving him from whatever trouble he’s in," I answered, straightening my clothing and zipping up my heavy parka. "Oh, man, I am missing one! I know I had four on this foot! What sort of place was that company you used, demon-haters or something?" "Budget Teleporters is a perfectly good company. Didn’t you listen to their warning about keeping your arms and legs in the portal at all times?
Katie MacAlister (Holy Smokes (Aisling Grey, #4))
To be the mother of a grown-up child means that you don’t have a child anymore, and that is sad. When the grown-up child leaves home, that is sadder. I wanted Margaret to go to college, but when she actually went away it broke my heart. Maybe if you had enough children you could get used to those departures, but, having only three, I never did. I felt them like amputations. Something I needed was missing. Sometimes, even now, when I come into this house and it sounds empty, before I think I will wonder, “Where are they?
Wendell Berry (Hannah Coulter)
He knew I was gay for ages," he said, his voice soft. "We both did. Since we were, like, ten or eleven, maybe. As soon as we understood what gay was, we knew that's what I was. We... We used to kiss sometimes, when we were kids. When we were alone. Just little childish kisses, little pecks on the lips because we thought it was fun. We were always... really affectionate with each other. We'd cuddle and... we were kind to each other, rather than nasty like most children. I think we were so caught up in each other that we just... missed all the heteronormative propaganda that's thrust at you when you're that age. We didn't really realize it was weird until - yeah, until we were ten or eleven. But that didn't really stop us. I guess... I guess I always felt like it was more romantic than Aled did. Aled always just treated it like it was something that friends did rather than boyfriends. Aled... he's always been weird. He doesn't care what people think. He doesn't even, like, register the social norms... he's just caught up in his own little world.
Alice Oseman (Radio Silence)
Go on," Kell told him without taking his eyes from Lila. " Get some rest." Hastra shifted. "I can't, sir," he said. "I'm to escort Miss Bard--" "I'll take that charge," cut in Kell. Hastra bit his lip and retreated several steps. Lila let her forehead come to rest against his, her face so close the features blurred. And yet, that fractured eye shone with frightening clarity. "You never told me," he whispered. "You never noticed," she answered. And then, "Alucard did." The blow landed, and Kell started to pull away when Lila's eyelids fluttered and she swayed dangerously. He braced her. "Come on," he said gently. "I have a room upstairs. Why don't we--" A sleepy flicker of amusement. "Trying to get me into bed?" Kell mustered a smile. "It's only fair. I've spent enough time in yours." "If I remember correctly," she said, her voice dreamy with fatigue, "you were on top of the bed the entire time." "And tied to it," observed Kell. Her words were soft at the edges. "Those were the days..." she said, right before she fell forward. It happened so fast Kell could do nothing but throw his arms around her. "Lila?" he asked, first gently, and then more urgently. "Lila?" She murmured against his front, something about sharp knives and soft corners, but didn't rouse, and Kell shot a glance at Hastra, who was still standing there, looking thoroughly embarrassed. "What have you done?" demanded Kell. "It was just a tonic, sir," he fumbled, "something for sleep." "You drugged her?" "It was Tieren's order," said Hastra, chastised. "He said she was mad and stubborn and no use to us dead." Hastra lowered his voice when he said this, mimicking Tieren's tone with startling accuracy. "And what do you plan to do when she wakes back up?" Hastra shrank back. "Apologize?" Kell made an exasperated sound as Lila nuzzled-- actually nuzzled-- his shoulder. "I suggest," he snapped at the young man, "you think of something better. Like an escape route." Hastra paled, and Kell swept Lila up into his arms, amazed at her lightness... Kell swept through the halls until he reached his room and lowered Lila onto the couch. Hastra handed him a blanket. "Shouldn't you take off her knives?" "There's not enough tonic in the world to risk it," said Kell.
V.E. Schwab (A Conjuring of Light (Shades of Magic, #3))
Here is the problem: You can only desire something you don't have-that's how desire works. And we had each other. Resolutely. Neither of us with a stray glance at another. After Adam and I were married, when I'd go out into the world, I'd see that the men I found myself drawn to were almost replicas of Adam, just like that guy in Lisbon. I wanted nothing different. I just missed the longing. We are not supposed to want the longing, but there it is. So what do you do with that? Forget it, there's no use talking about this. Talking about this doesn't make it better.
Taffy Brodesser-Akner (Fleishman Is in Trouble)
To listen well is to figure out what’s on someone’s mind and demonstrate that you care enough to want to know. It’s what we all crave; to be understood as a person with thoughts, emotions, and intentions that are unique and valuable and deserving of attention. Listening is not about teaching, shaping, critiquing, appraising, or showing how it should be done (“Here, let me show you.” “Don’t be shy.” “That’s awesome!” “Smile for Daddy.”). Listening is about the experience of being experienced. It’s when someone takes an interest in who you are and what you are doing. The lack of being known and accepted in this way leads to feelings of inadequacy and emptiness. What makes us feel most lonely and isolated in life is less often the result of a devastating traumatic event than the accumulation of occasions when nothing happened but something profitably could have. It’s the missed opportunity to connect when you weren’t listening or someone wasn’t really listening to you.
Kate Murphy (You're Not Listening: What You're Missing and Why It Matters)
He looked at me then, and his eyes were deep blue in the twilight. “Did you miss me, Alina? Did you miss me when you were gone?" "Every day," I said honestly. "I missed you every hour. And you know what the worst part was? It caught me completely by surprise. I'd catch myself walking around to find you, not for any reason, just out of habit, because I'd seen something I wanted to tell you about, or because I just wanted to hear your voice. And then I'd realize that you weren't there anymore, and every time, every single time, it was like having the wind knocked out of me. I've risked my life for you. I've walked half the length of Ravka for you, and I'd do it again and again and again just to be with you, just to starve with you and freeze with you and hear you complain about hard cheese every day. So don't tell me we don't belong together," he said fiercely. He was very close now, and my heart was suddenly hammering in my chest. "I'm sorry it took me so long to see you, Alina. But I see you now.
Leigh Bardugo (Shadow and Bone (The Shadow and Bone Trilogy, #1))
It's a misery peculiar to would-be writers. Your theme is good, as are your sentences. Your characters are so ruddy with life they practically need birth certificates. The plot you've mapped out for them is grand, simple and gripping. You've done your research, gathering the facts; historical, social, climatic culinary, that will give your story its feel of authenticity. The dialogue zips along, crackling with tension. The descriptions burst with color, contrast and telling detail. Really, your story can only be great. But it all adds up to nothing. In spite the obvious, shining promise of it, there comes a moment when you realize that the whisper that has been pestering you all along from the back of your mind is speaking the flat, awful truth: IT WON'T WORK. An element is missing, that spark that brings to life in a real story, regardless of whether the history or the food is right. Your story is emotionally dead, that's the crux of it. The discovery is something soul-destroying, I tell you. It leaves you with an aching hunger.
Yann Martel
I mean to do something grand. I don't know what, yet; but when I'm grown up I shall find out.Perhaps,it will be rowing out in boats, and saving peoples' lives,like that girl in the book. Or perhaps I shall go and nurse in the hospital, like Miss Nightingale. Or else I'll head a crusade and ride on a white horse, with armor and a helmet on my head, and carry a sacred flag. Or if I don't do that, I'll paint pictures,or sing, or scalp – sculp – what is it? you know – make figures in marble. Anyhow it shall be something.
Susan Coolidge (What Katy Did)
Let me tell you something, honey. When your boobs fall south and that pretty skin of yours looks like you’ve been tanning in a nuclear war zone, you’ll see what I mean about independence. When the looks are gone, all you’ve got left is your spirit, and ya gotta use it until you lose it. That and the occasional sponge bath from Francisco, but soon his ass will be just as wrinkly as mine. Beauty fades, but a strong will keeps ya young and springy. -Miss Velma
Rachael Wade (Love and Relativity (Preservation))
When we met, we were two injured souls. Both keeping the real out of our lives for fear of what we might find. But nothing could have kept us apart. I never believed in destiny. Thought that was a bunch of crap for people who read too many books. Until I met you. You’re it for me, Babe. I didn’t even know I was missing something until I found you, but now I don’t know how I got through a day without what you’ve given me. You’re my soul mate. As sappy as it sounds, it’s god damn true. Nothing has ever been truer in my life. So no, I’m not worried about this fight not helping me heal from my past, because it’s you who does that for me. You’ve filled all the cracks in my heart and made me better. I never thought I’d say this after what I went through, but I’m the luckiest bastard on this earth.
Vi Keeland (Worth the Fight (MMA Fighter, #1))
DEAR MISS MANNERS: I a tired of being treated like a child. My father says it's because I am a child--I am twelve-and-a-half years old--but it still isn't fair. If I go into a store to buy something, nobody pays any attention to me, or if they do, it's to say, "Leave that alone," "Don't touch that," although I haven't done anything. My money is as good as anybody's, but because I am younger, they feel they can be mean to me. It happens to me at home, too. My mother's friend who comes over after dinner sometimes, who doesn't have any children of her own and doesn't know what's what, likes to say to me, "Shouldn't you be in bed by now,dear?" when she doesn't even know what my bedtime is supposed to be. Is there any way I can make these people stop? GENTLE READER: Growing up is the best revenge.
Judith Martin
Anytime I talk about my work informally, I inevitably encounter someone who wants to know why addicts become addicts. They use words like “will” and “choice,” and they end by saying, “Don’t you think there’s more to it than the brain?” They are skeptical of the rhetoric of addiction as disease, something akin to high blood pressure or diabetes, and I get that. What they’re really saying is that they may have partied in high school and college but look at them now. Look how strong-willed they are, how many good choices they’ve made. They want reassurances. They want to believe that they have been loved enough and have raised their children well enough that the things that I research will never, ever touch their own lives. I understand this impulse. I, too, have spent years creating my little moat of good deeds in an attempt to protect the castle of myself. I don’t want to be dismissed the way that Nana was once dismissed. I know that it’s easier to say Their kind does seem to have a taste for drugs, easier to write all addicts off as bad and weak-willed people, than it is to look closely at the nature of their suffering. I do it too, sometimes. I judge. I walk around with my chest puffed out, making sure hat everyone knows about my Harvard and Stanford degrees, as if those things encapsulate me, and when I do so, I give in to the same facile, lazy thinking that characterizes those who think of addicts as horrible people. It’s just that I’m standing on the other side of the moat. What I can say for certain is that there is no case study in the world that could capture the whole animal of my brother, that could show how smart and kind and generous he was, how much he wanted to get better, how much he wanted to live. Forget for a moment what he looked like on paper, and instead see him as he was in all of his glory, in all of his beauty. It’s true that for years before he died, I would look at his face and think, What a pity, what a waste. But the waste was my own, the waste was what I missed out on whenever I looked at him and saw just his addiction.
Yaa Gyasi (Transcendent Kingdom)
It [fiction] allows us to see the world from the point of view of someone else and there has been quite a lot of neurological research that shows reading novels is actually good for you. It embeds you in society and makes you think about other people. People are certainly better at all sorts of things if they can hold a novel in their heads. It is quite a skill, but if you can't do it then you're missing out on something in life. I think you can tell, when you meet someone, whether they read novels or not. There is some little hollowness if they don't.
Philip Hensher
You know that point in your life when you realize that the house you grew up in isn’t really your home anymore… All of the sudden, even though you have some place to put your shit, that idea of home is gone… Or maybe it's like this rite of passage… You will never have that feeling again until you create a new idea of home for yourself, you know, for your kids, for the family you start. It’s like a cycle or something. Maybe that’s all family really is: a group of people that miss the same imaginary place.
Zach Braff
The baby explodes into an unknown world that is only knowable through some kind of a story – of course that is how we all live, it’s the narrative of our lives, but adoption drops you into the story after it has started. It’s like reading a book with the first few pages missing. It’s like arriving after curtain up. The feeling that something is missing never, ever leaves you – and it can’t, and it shouldn’t, because something is missing.
Jeanette Winterson (Why Be Happy When You Could Be Normal?)
An attachment grew up. What is an attachment? It is the most difficult of all the human interrelationships to explain, because it is the vaguest, the most impalpable. It has all the good points of love, and none of its drawbacks. No jealousy, no quarrels, no greed to possess, no fear of losing possession, no hatred (which is very much a part of love), no surge of passion and no hangover afterward. It never reaches the heights, and it never reaches the depths. As a rule it comes on subtly. As theirs did. As a rule the two involved are not even aware of it at first. As they were not. As a rule it only becomes noticeable when it is interrupted in some way, or broken off by circumstances. As theirs was. In other words, its presence only becomes known in its absence. It is only missed after it stops. While it is still going on, little thought is given to it, because little thought needs to be. It is pleasant to meet, it is pleasant to be together. To put your shopping packages down on a little wire-backed chair at a little table at a sidewalk cafe, and sit down and have a vermouth with someone who has been waiting there for you. And will be waiting there again tomorrow afternoon. Same time, same table, same sidewalk cafe. Or to watch Italian youth going through the gyrations of the latest dance craze in some inexpensive indigenous night-place-while you, who come from the country where the dance originated, only get up to do a sedate fox trot. It is even pleasant to part, because this simply means preparing the way for the next meeting. One long continuous being-together, even in a love affair, might make the thing wilt. In an attachment it would surely kill the thing off altogether. But to meet, to part, then to meet again in a few days, keeps the thing going, encourages it to flower. And yet it requires a certain amount of vanity, as love does; a desire to please, to look one's best, to elicit compliments. It inspires a certain amount of flirtation, for the two are of opposite sex. A wink of understanding over the rim of a raised glass, a low-voiced confidential aside about something and the smile of intimacy that answers it, a small impromptu gift - a necktie on the one part because of an accidental spill on the one he was wearing, or of a small bunch of flowers on the other part because of the color of the dress she has on. So it goes. And suddenly they part, and suddenly there's a void, and suddenly they discover they have had an attachment. Rome passed into the past, and became New York. Now, if they had never come together again, or only after a long time and in different circumstances, then the attachment would have faded and died. But if they suddenly do come together again - while the sharp sting of missing one another is still smarting - then the attachment will revive full force, full strength. But never again as merely an attachment. It has to go on from there, it has to build, to pick up speed. And sometimes it is so glad to be brought back again that it makes the mistake of thinking it is love. ("For The Rest Of Her Life")
Cornell Woolrich (Angels of Darkness)
And we offer each other words of consolotation or distraction or encouragement when we see that one or the other of us is in need of such words. We also miss each other (vaguely) when we're not together, she's one of those people (in everyone's life there are four or five such people whose loss one truly feels) to whom you're used to telling everything that happens to you, that is, one of those people you think about when something happens to you, be it funny or dramatic, and for whom you store up events and anecdotes. You accept misfortunes gladly because you know you can tell those five people about them afterwards.
Javier Marías (A Heart So White)
I often use the hypothetical out-of-control ice-cream truck. What would happen if you were walking across the street and were suddenly hit by a careening Mister Softee truck? As you lie there, in your last few moments of consciousness, what kind of final regrets flash through your mind? 'I should have had a last cigarette!' might be one. Or, 'I should have dropped acid with everybody else back in '74!' Maybe: 'I should have done that hostess after all!' Something along the lines of: 'I should have had more fun in my life! I should have relaxed a little more, enjoyed myself a little more . . .' That was never my problem. When they're yanking a fender out of my chest cavity, I will decidedly not be regretting missed opportunities for a good time. My regrets will be more along the lines of a sad list of people hurt, people let down, assets wasted and advantages squandered.
Anthony Bourdain (Kitchen Confidential: Adventures in the Culinary Underbelly)
I didn’t realize how much I could miss a simple touch until I didn’t have it anymore. It’s so easy to let her back in. To let her wiggle her way back into my arms and smile up at me like she is the sun and I am every star in her sky. When you spend your life in the dark, looking up and wishing for something better – something brighter – you don’t realize just how lonely you are. Not until the sun shines, shedding light on all the empty spaces and filling them with beautiful warmth. But when the sun abandons you, everything seems darks and colder than before. Emptier. Lonelier.
S.L. Jennings (Taint (Sexual Education, #1))
He tried to measure his day by tallying the hours on his wrist. I wiped it off and called him a prisoner. He placed the hours on a scale with hours from former days to compare. I took a hammer and broke it all. He bent down and picked up the shards of minutes first then swept the seconds. I told him he’d missed a spot; there were some sparkling specks left. 'What are they?' he asked. 'Those are moments,' I said. 'What are they made of?' he asked. They are times, I thought, when you win a race or win a heart. They are times when you give birth or lay something, someone to rest. When you wake up in the morning with a smile because anything is possible. When someone compliments the thing you hate most about yourself. Times when you are embarrassed. Times when you are hurtful. Times when you relish in a hearty meal. Times when you service others and are content with a well-spent day. 'What are they made of?' he asked again. 'They are made up of times when we are fully present.' I picked up one of the specks with the tip of my finger. 'Do you remember this?' I asked. 'Of course,' he said, 'I was whistling in the kitchen that morning.' 'Why?' I asked. 'Because of the knowledge that I was loved.
Kamand Kojouri
There is a very simple secret to being happy. Just let go of your demand on this moment. Any time you have a demand on the moment to give you something or remove something, there is suffering. Your demands keep you chained to the dream state of conditioned mind. The problem is that when there is a demand, you completely miss what is now. Letting go applies to the highest sacred demand, and even to the demand for love. If you demand in some subtle way to be loved, even if you get love, it is never enough. In the next moment, the demand reasserts itself, and you need to be loved again. But as soon as you let go, there is knowing in that instant that there is love here already. The mind is afraid to let go of its demand because the mind thinks that if it lets go, it is not going to get what it wants - as if demanding works. This is not the way things work. Stop chasing peace and stop chasing love, and your heart becomes full. Stop trying to be a better person, and you are a better person. Stop trying to forgive, and forgiveness happens. Stop and be still.
Adyashanti
Fumbling in the dark, Josie reached underneath the frame of her bed for the plastic bag she’d stashed-her supply of sleeping pills. She was no better than any of the other stupid people in this world who thought if they pretended hard enough, they could make it so. She’d thought that death could be an answer, because she was too immature to realize it was the biggest question of all. Yesterday, she hadn’t known what patterns blood could make when it sprayed on a whitewashed wall. She hadn’t understood that life left a person’s lungs first, and their eyes last. She had pictured suicide as a final statement, a fuck you to the people who hadn’t understood how hard it was for her to be the Josie they wanted her to be. She’d somehow thought that if she killed herself, she’d be able to watch everyone else’s reaction; that she’d get the last laugh. Until yesterday, she hadn’t really understood. Dead was dead. When you died, you did not get to come back and see what you were missing. You didn’t get to apologize. You didn’t get a second chance. Death wasn’t something you could control. In fact, it would always have the upper hand.
Jodi Picoult (Nineteen Minutes)
The baby explodes into an unknown world that is only knowable through some kind of a story - of course that is how we all live, it's the narrative of our lives, but adoption drops you into the story after it has started. It's like reading a book with the first few pages missing. It's like arriving after curtain up. The feeling that something is missing never, ever leaves you - and it can't, and it shouldn't, because something IS missing. That isn't of its nature negative. The missing part, the missing past, can be an opening, not a void. It can be an entry as well as an exit. It is the fossil record, the imprint of another life, and although you can never have that life, your fingers trace the space where it might have been, and your fingers learn a kind of Braille.
Jeanette Winterson (Why Be Happy When You Could Be Normal?)
Now he reduced his progress to the rhythm of his boots -- he walked across the land until he came to the sea. Everything that impeded him had to be outweighed, even if only by a fraction, by all that drove him on. In one pan of the scales, his wound, thirst, the blister, tiredness, the heat, the aching in his feet and legs, the Stukas, the distance, the Channel; in the other, I'll wait for you, and the memory of when she had said it, which he had come to treat like a sacred site. Also, the fear of capture. His most sensual memories -- their few minutes in the library, the kiss in Whitehall -- was bleached colorless through overuse. He knew by heart certain passages from her letters, he had revisited their tussle with the vase by the fountain, he remembered the warmth from her arm at the dinner when the twins went missing. These memories sustained him, but not so easily. Too often they reminded him of where he was when he last summoned them. They lay on the far side of a great divide in time, as significant as B.C. and A.D. Before prison, before war, before the sight of a corpse became a banality. But these heresies died when he read her last letter. He touched his breast pocket. It was a kind of genuflection. Still there. Here was something new on the scales. That he could be cleared had all the simplicity of love. Merely tasting the possibility reminded him of how much had narrowed and died. His taste for life, no less, all the old ambitions and pleasures. The prospect was of rebirth, a triumphant return.
Ian McEwan (Atonement)
Newness wears off. This is something I’ve learned about relationships. I’ve had more than a few run their course, the idiosyncrasies that were once endearing becoming annoying, the jump of my heart into my throat at the sight of her lessening to a skip, then a pause, then the bare recognition that at some point slips into dread, and you know it’s time to end it. It’s different with Alex. The newness might have faded, which is inevitable, but it’s grown into something better. The panic of not being able to come up with something to say to her has settled into the comfort of companionable silence, my hand resting on her knee, or her head on my chest. The frantic need to be near her and know how she feels has morphed into an almost pleasant ache of missing her when she’s not with me, because I know we’ll be together again.
Mindy McGinnis (The Female of the Species)
And that’s the worst of it, the part no one ever tells you about.” “What part?” he said, his voice still clenched with grief. “How it never stops. How the pain of missing people never stops. When you burn your finger in a fire, it hurts, but it only hurts one way because you know what caused the pain and why the pain is there, and you know that it will settle, in a bit. But heart pain has facets, Silas. A thousand different sides, sharp and hard; most of them you don’t even know exist, even when you’re looking straight at them. When someone leaves, or dies, or doesn’t love you in return, well, you may think you know why your heart hurts. But wrapped in there are a hundred kinds of fear all tangled in a knot you can’t untie. Nobody wants to be alone. We all fear being left alone, being left behind. I know such things exist. But you must learn to see death as something more than loss, more than absence, more than silence. You must learn to make mourning into memory. For once a person takes leave of his life, that life becomes so much more a part of ours. In death, they come to be in our keeping. The dead find their rest within us. Thus, in remembrance, we are never alone. But people forget the power of memory. So we fear death in the deepest place of our very being, because we don’t know that memories make us immortal. We focus instead on being gone and the awful mystery behind absence. Love and death—and those two are very closely bound together—scare us because we can’t control them. We fear what we can’t control. That fear is really part of what makes us human, but mostly, we’re just afraid of the ends of stories we can’t foresee.
Ari Berk (Death Watch (The Undertaken, #1))
Occasionally my mother called from California. My parents had hurried and difficult conversations. She asked after Buckley and Linsey and Holiday. She asked how the house was holded up and whether there was anything he needed to tell her. 'We still miss you,' he said in December 1977, when the leaves had all fallen and been blown or raked away but even still, with the ground waiting to recieve it, there had been no snow. 'I know that,' she said. 'What about teaching? I thought that was your plan,' 'It was,' she conceded. She was on the phone in the office of the winery. Things had slowed up after the lunch crowd, but five limos of old ladies, three sheets to the wind, were soon due in. She was silent and then she said something that no one, least of all my father, could have argued with. 'Plans change.' ~pgs 226; Changing plans
Alice Sebold (The Lovely Bones)
At this point there's something I should explain about myself, which is that I don't talk much, probably too little, and I think this has been detrimental to my social life. It's not that I have trouble expressing myself, or no more than people generally have when they're trying to put something complex into words. I'd even say I have less trouble than most because my long involvement with literature has given me a better-than-average capacity for handling language. But I have no gift for small talk, and there's no point trying to learn or pretend; it wouldn't be convincing. My conversational style is spasmodic (someone once described it as "hollowing"). Every sentence opens up gaps, which require new beginnings. I can't maintain any continuity. In short, I speak when I have something to say. My problem, I suppose - and this may be an effect of involvement with literature - is that I attribute too much importance to the subject. For me, it's never simply a question of "talking" but always a question of "what to talk about". And the effort of weighing up potential subjects kills the spontaneity of dialogue. In other words, when everything you say has to be "worth the effort", it's too much effort to go on talking. I envy people who can launch into a conversation with gusto and energy, and keep it going. I envy them that human contact, so full of promise, a living reality from which, in my mute isolation, I feel excluded. "But what do they talk about?" I wonder, which is obviously the wrong question to ask. The crabbed awkwardness of my social interactions is a result of this failing on my part. Looking back, I can see that it was responsible for most of my missed opportunities and almost all the woes of solitude. The older I get, the more convinced I am that this is a mutilation, for which my professional success cannot compensate, much less my "rich inner life." And I've never been able to resolve the conundrum that conversationalists pose for me: how do they keep coming up with things to talk about? I don't even wonder about it anymore, perhaps because I know there's no answer.
César Aira
A mother's body against a child's body makes a place. It says you are here. Without this body against your body there is no place. I envy people who miss their mother. Or miss a place or know something called home. The absence of a body against my body created a gap, a hole, a hunger. This hunger determined my life. ... The absence of a body against my body made attachment abstract. Made my own body dislocated and unable to rest or settle. A body pressed against your body is the beginning of nest. I grew up not in a home but in a kind of free fall of anger and violence that led to a life of constant movement, of leaving and falling. It is why at one point I couldn't stop drinking and fucking. Why I needed people to touch me all the time. It had less to do with sex than location. When you press against me, or put yourself inside me. When you hold me down or lift me up, when you lie on top of me and I can feel your weight, I exist. I am here.
Eve Ensler (In the Body of the World)
One of my biggest problems in dealing with the breakdown of my body is that I keep looking in the wrong direction. I look to the past and the capabilities I once had, instead of looking to the future and what I will someday become in the presence and by the grace of God. Perhaps that is the strongest temptation for you too. Our culture reinforces that mistake by its refusal to talk about heaven, as if it were an old-fashioned and outdated notion. We also intensify the problem by craving present health (as limited as it can be) more than we desire God. A friend once said to me. "This is so hard getting old—there are so many things we can‘t do any more. I guess the Lord wants to teach us something." Indeed, our bodies will never be what they previously were, and we find that difficult because we miss our former activities. But God wants to teach us to hunger for Him, our greatest treasure. Instead of rejecting the notion of heaven, we genuinely ache in our deepest self to fill that concept with a larger landscape of the Joy of basking in God‘s presence.
Marva J. Dawn (Being Well When We're Ill: Wholeness and Hope in Spite of Infirmity)
I'm in a weird-ass mood today, Doc. Wired up, mind all over the place, looking for answers, reasons something solid to cling to, something real, but just when I think I've got it figured out and neatly filed under fixed instead of fucked, turns out I'm still shattered, scattered, and battered. But you probably already knew that, didn't you?...You might not be able to help me. That makes me sad, but not for me. It makes me sad for you. It must be frustrating for a shrink to have a patient who's beyond fixing. That first shrink I saw when I got back to Clayton Falls told me no one is a lost cause, but I think that's bullshit. I think people can be so crushed, so broken, that they'll never be anything more than a fragment of a whole person. (129)
Chevy Stevens (Still Missing)
You are precious to me. What is so wrong with wanting to take care of you?” “If I needed or wanted to be taken care of, I would be no better than the women in here! I am nothing like them.” “No, you are not! I love you, Lada.” He closed his eyes and lowered his voice, trying to regain control. “Please allow me to love you. You are the most important person in my life. You and your brother are the only people who truly know me.” Lada flinched, and Mehmed’s eyebrows raised as he noticed her reaction. He did not understand why, though. Lada had not told him about her last fight with Radu, nor that she had heard nothing from him since they parted. Mehmed remained blind to the true depths of Radu’s love—and to how much Lada missed her brother. “Please,” Mehmed said. “I have already lost Radu to my father. He rarely writes, and when he does it is as though he addresses a stranger. I cannot afford to lose you, too.” “You cannot lose something you do not own. Take me with you.
Kiersten White (And I Darken (The Conqueror's Saga, #1))
All love stories are frustration stories. As are all stories about parents and children, which are also love stories, in Freud's view, the formative love stories. To fall in love is to be reminded of a frustration that you didn't know you had (of one's formative frustrations, and of one's attempted self-cures for them); you wanted someone, you felt deprived of something, and then it seems to be there. And what is renewed in that experience is an intensity of frustration, and an intensity of satisfaction. It is as if, oddly, you were waiting for someone but you didn't know who they were until they arrived. Whether or not you were aware that there was something missing in your life, you will be when you meet the person you want. What psychoanalysis will add to this love story is that the person you fall in love with really is the man or woman of your dreams; that you have dreamed them up before you met them; not out of nothing - nothing comes of nothing - but out of prior experience, both real and wished for. You recognize them with such certainty because you already, in a certain sense, know them, and because you have quite literally been expecting them, you feel as though you have known them for ever, and yet, at the same time, they are quite foreign to you. They are familiar foreign bodies. But one things is very noticeable in this basic story; that however much you have been wanting and hoping and dreaming of meeting the person of your dreams, it is only when you meet them that you will start missing them. It seems the presence of an object is required to make its absence felt.
Adam Phillips
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)
And What Good Will Your Vanity Be When The Rapture Comes” says the man with a cart of empty bottles at the corner of church and lincoln while I stare into my phone and I say I know oh I know while trying to find the specific filter that will make the sun’s near-flawless descent look the way I might describe it in a poem and the man says the moment is already right in front of you and I say I know but everyone I love is not here and I mean here like on this street corner with me while I turn the sky a darker shade of red on my phone and I mean here like everyone I love who I can still touch and not pass my fingers through like the wind in a dream but I look up at the man and he is a kaleidoscope of shadows I mean his shadows have shadows and they are small and trailing behind him and I know then that everyone he loves is also not here and the man doesn’t ask but I still say hey man I’ve got nothing I’ve got nothing even though I have plenty to go home to and the sun is still hot even in its endless flirt with submission and the man’s palm has a small river inside I mean he has taken my hand now and here we are tethered and unmoving and the man says what color are you making the sky and I say what I might say in a poem I say all surrender ends in blood and he says what color are you making the sky and I say something bright enough to make people wish they were here and he squints towards the dancing shrapnel of dying light along a rooftop and he says I love things only as they are and I’m sure I did once too but I can’t prove it to anyone these days and he says the end isn’t always about what dies and I know I know or I knew once and now I write about beautiful things like I will never touch a beautiful thing again and the man looks me in the eyes and he points to the blue-orange vault over heaven’s gates and he says the face of everyone you miss is up there and I know I know I can’t see them but I know and he turns my face to the horizon and he says we don’t have much time left and I get that he means the time before the sun is finally through with its daily work or I think I get that but I still can’t stop trembling and I close my eyes and I am sobbing on the corner of church and lincoln and when I open my eyes the sun is plucking everyone who has chosen to love me from the clouds and carrying them into the light-drunk horizon and I am seeing this and I know I am seeing this the girl who kissed me as a boy in the dairy aisle of meijer while our parents shopped and the older boy on the basketball team who taught me how to make a good fist and swing it into the jaw of a bully and the friends who crawled to my porch in the summer of any year I have been alive they were all there I saw their faces and it was like I was given the eyes of a newborn again and once you know what it is to be lonely it is hard to unsee that which serves as a reminder that you were not always empty and I am gasping into the now-dark air and I pull my shirt up to wipe whatever tears are left and I see the man walking in the other direction and I chase him down and tap his arm and I say did you see it did you see it like I did and he turns and leans into the glow of a streetlamp and he is anchored by a single shadow now and he sneers and he says have we met and he scoffs and pushes his cart off into the night and I can hear the glass rattling even as I watch him become small and vanish and I look down at my phone and the sky on the screen is still blood red.
Hanif Abdurraqib
These are lines from my asteroid-impact novel, Regolith: Just because there are no laws against stupidity doesn’t mean it shouldn’t be punished. I haven’t faced rejection this brutal since I was single. He smelled trouble like a fart in the shower. If this was a kiss of gratitude, then she must have been very grateful. Not since Bush and Cheney have so few spent so much so fast for so long for so little. As a nympho for mind-fucks, Lisa took to politics like a pig to mud. She began paying men compliments as if she expected a receipt. Like the Aerosmith song, his get-up-and-go just got-up-and-went. “You couldn’t beat the crap out of a dirty diaper!” He embraced his only daughter as if she was deploying to Iraq. She was hotter than a Class 4 solar flare! If sex was a weapon, then Monique possessed WMD I haven’t felt this alive since I lost my virginity. He once read that 95% of women fake organism, and the rest are gay. Beauty may be in the eyes of the beholder, but ugly is universal. Why do wives fart, but not girlfriends? Adultery is sex that is wrong, but not necessarily bad. The dinosaurs stayed drugged out, drooling like Jonas Brothers fans. Silence filled the room like tear gas. The told him a fraction of the truth and hoped it would take just a fraction of the time. Happiness is the best cosmetic, He was a whale of a catch, and there were a lot of fish in the sea eager to nibble on his bait. Cheap hookers are less buck for the bang, Men cannot fall in love with women they don’t find attractive, and women cannot fall in love with men they do not respect. During sex, men want feedback while women expect mind-reading. Cooper looked like a cow about to be tipped over. His father warned him to never do anything he couldn’t justify on Oprah. The poor are not free -- they’re just not enslaved. Only those with money are free. Sperm wasn’t something he would choose on a menu, but it still tasted better than asparagus. The crater looked alive, like Godzilla was about to leap out and mess up Tokyo. Bush follows the Bible until it gets to Jesus. When Bush talks to God, it’s prayer; when God talks to Bush, it’s policy. Cheney called the new Miss America a traitor – apparently she wished for world peace. Cheney was so unpopular that Bush almost replaced him when running for re-election, changing his campaign slogan to, ‘Ain’t Got Dick.’ Bush fought a war on poverty – and the poor lost. Bush thinks we should strengthen the dollar by making it two-ply. Hurricane Katrina got rid of so many Democratic voters that Republicans have started calling her Kathleen Harris. America and Iraq fought a war and Iran won. Bush hasn’t choked this much since his last pretzel. Some wars are unpopular; the rest are victorious. So many conservatives hate the GOP that they are thinking of changing their name to the Dixie Chicks. If Saddam had any WMD, he would have used them when we invaded. If Bush had any brains, he would have used them when we invaded. It’s hard for Bush to win hearts and minds since he has neither. In Iraq, you are a coward if you leave and a fool if you stay. Bush believes it’s not a sin to kill Muslims since they are going to Hell anyway. And, with Bush’s help, soon. In Iraq, those who make their constitution subservient to their religion are called Muslims. In America they’re called Republicans. With great power comes great responsibility – unless you’re Republican.
Brent Reilly
The worst thing you do when you think is lie — you can make up reasons that are not true for the things that you did, and what you’re trying to do as a creative person is surprise yourself — find out who you really are, and try not to lie, try to tell the truth all the time. And the only way to do this is by being very active and very emotional, and get it out of yourself — making things that you hate and things that you love, you write about these then, intensely. When it’s over, then you can think about it; then you can look, it works or it doesn’t work, something is missing here. And, if something is missing, then you go back and reemotionalize that part, so it’s all of a piece. But thinking is to be a corrective in our life — it’s not supposed to be a center of our life. Living is supposed to be the center of our life, being is supposed to be the center — with correctives around, which hold us like the skin holds our blood and our flesh in. But our skin is not a way of life — the way of living is the blood pumping through our veins, the ability to sense and to feel and to know. And the intellect doesn’t help you very much there — you should get on with the business of living.
Ray Bradbury
That was a mite tacky, ma'am ... even for you." Elizabeth let her mouth fall open. "Even for me? What's that supposed to mean?" "It just means that people with" --He stared pointedly-- "your upbringing aren't usually the most polite folks around." ... "Listen Ranslett, if I've offended you I certainly didn't mean t--" "Sure you did. You just meant to do it in a way that would make yourself look bad." He turned to look at her more fully, and his eyes narrowed, though not in malice. “When you’ve got something to say that isn’t kind, Miss Westbrook, there’s no way to couch it so that it is. Or to hide from how it makes you look when you do. That’s something us good ol’ Southern boys learn real quick about women.” His accent thickened, comically so. “Your gender may say things with a smile, all soft and gentle-like, but some of you --- granted, not all --- have a dagger hidden in your skirts. Us country boys may not be as quick as some, ma’am, but it doesn’t take us too long to figure out who those woman are.” He winked at her. “We just check each other’s backs for the bloodstains.” He stood and reached behind him as though feeling for something. “Yep, feelin’ a little sticky back there.
Tamera Alexander (From a Distance (Timber Ridge Reflections, #1))
You know, hon, after Stephie died, we never really talked about her." she says, her hands tight around the cart handle. "There's a lot of pain there. Still. I guess we feel like we failed her. Like maybe if we were home instead of away at college, we could've done something to fix her. Something my patents and the doctors and her boyfriend missed. Sometimes I think I don't have the right to talk about her. Like at the end, I don't know her well enough to say anything. So much of her life became secret. She spent all of her time with her boyfriend, and when she was home, her nose was buried in her diary. I swear that diary was her best friend, even more than Megan." "Did you ever read it?" I ask. "No." "Not even after she died?" Aunt Rachel shakes her head, removing an eggplant from the middle row and pressing her fingers against its flesh. "To this day, I don't know if I would've, either. We never found it, Delilah. It's like she just…took it with her.
Sarah Ockler (Fixing Delilah)
I was asked to talk to a roomful of undergraduates in a university in a beautiful coastal valley. I talked about place, about the way we often talk about love of place, but seldom how places love us back, of what they give us. They give us continuity, something to return to, and offer familiarity that allows some portion of our lives to remain collected and coherent. They give us an expansive scale in which our troubles are set into context, in which the largeness of the world is a balm to loss, trouble, and ugliness. And distant places give us refuge in territories where our own histories aren't so deeply entrenched and we can imagine other stories, other selves, or just drink up quiet and respite. The bigness of the world is redemption. Despair compresses you into a small space, and a depression is literally a hollow in the ground. To dig deeper into the self, to go underground, is sometimes necessary, but so is the other route of getting out of yourself, into the larger world, into the openness in which you need not clutch your story and your troubles so tightly to your chest. Being able to travel in both ways matters, and sometimes the way back into the heart of the question begins by going outward and beyond. This is the expansiveness that comes literally in a landscape or that tugs you out of yourself in a story..... I told the student that they were at an age when they might begin to choose the places that would sustain them the rest of their lives, that places were much more reliable than human beings, and often much longer-lasting, and I asked each of them where they felt at home. They answered, each of them, down the rows, for an hour, the immigrants who had never stayed anywhere long or left a familiar world behind, the teenagers who'd left the home they'd spent their whole lives in for the first time, the ones who loved or missed familiar landscapes and the ones who had not yet noticed them. I found books and places before I found friends and mentors, and they gave me a lot, if not quite what a human being would. As a child, I spun outward in trouble, for in that inside-out world [of my family], everywhere but home was safe. Happily, the oaks were there, the hills, the creeks, the groves, the birds, the old dairy and horse ranches, the rock outcroppings, the open space inviting me to leap out of the personal into the embrace of the nonhuman world.
Rebecca Solnit (The Faraway Nearby)
Hi, I’m Adele Czerny. I don’t really have a long speech. I mean, I sat through these things when I was your age, and they’re boring. I’m just going to say a few things about Noah and Raven Day. Did any of you guys know him?” In unison, Gansey and Adam started to lift their hands and just as quickly dropped them. Yes, they knew him. No, they had not known him. Noah, alive, had been before their time here. Noah, dead, was a phenomenon, not an acquaintance. “Well, you were missing out,” she said. “My mom always said he was a firecracker, which just meant he was always getting speeding tickets and jumping on tables at family reunions and stuff. He always had so many ideas. He was so hyper.” Adam and Gansey looked at each other. They had always had the sense that the Noah they knew was not the true Noah. It was just disconcerting to hear how much Noahness death had stripped. It was impossible to not wonder what Noah would have done with himself if he had lived. “Anyway, I’m here because I was actually the first one he told about his idea for Raven Day. He called me one evening, I guess it would’ve been when he was fourteen, and he told me he’d had this dream about ravens fighting and battling. He said they were all different colours and sizes and shapes, and he was inside them, and they were, like, swirling around him.” She motioned around herself in a whirlwind; she had Noah’s hands, Noah’s elbows. “And he told me, ‘I think it would be a cool art project.’ And I told him, ‘I’ll bet if everybody at the school made one, I bet you’d have enough.’ ” Gansey was aware that his arm hairs were standing up. “So they’re swooping and careening and there’s nothing but ravens, nothing but dreams all around you,” Adele said, only Gansey wasn’t sure if she had actually said it, or if he’d heard her wrong and he was just half-remembering something she’d already said. “Anyway, I know he’d like what it is like nowadays. So, um, thanks for remembering one of his crazy dreams.
Maggie Stiefvater (The Raven King (The Raven Cycle, #4))
There was a muffled tap again, and I heard a familiar voice whisper faintly, “Kelsey, it’s me.” I unlocked the door and peeked out. Ren was standing there dressed in his white clothes, barefoot, with a triumphant grin on his face. I pulled him inside and hissed out thickly, “What are you doing here? It’s dangerous coming into town! You could have been seen, and they’d send hunters out after you!” He shrugged his shoulders and grinned. “I missed you.” My mouth quirked up in a half smile. “I missed you too.” He leaned a shoulder nonchalantly against the doorframe. “Does that mean you’ll let me stay here? I’ll sleep on the floor and leave before daylight. No one will see me. I promise.” I let out a deep breath. “Okay, but promise you’ll leave early. I don’t like you risking yourself like this.” “I promise.” He sat down on the bed, took my hand, and pulled me down to sit beside him. “I don’t like sleeping in the dark jungle by myself.” “I wouldn’t either.” He looked down at our entwined hands. “When I’m with you, I feel like a man again. When I’m out there all alone, I feel like a beast, an animal.” His eyes darted up to mine. I squeezed his hand. “I understand. It’s fine. Really.” He grinned. “You were hard to track, you know. Lucky for me you two decided to walk to dinner, so I could follow your scent right to your door.” Something on the nightstand caught his attention. Leaning around me, he reached over and picked up my open journal. I had drawn a new picture of a tiger-my tiger. My circus drawings were okay, but this latest one was more personal and full of life. Ren stared at it for a moment while a bright crimson flush colored my cheeks. He traced the tiger with his finger, and then whispered gently, "Someday, I'll give you a portrait of the real me." Setting the journal down carefully, he took both of my hands in his, turned to me with an intense expression, and said, "I don't want you to see only a tiger when you look at me. I want you to see me. The man." Reaching out, he almost touched my cheek but he stopped and withdrew his hand. "I've worn the tiger's face for far too many years. He's stolen my humanity." I nodded while he squeezed my hands and whispered quietly, "Kells, I don't want to be him anymore. I want to be me. I want to have a life." "I know," I said softly. I reached up to stroke his cheek. "Ren, I-" I froze in place as he pulled my hand slowly down to his lips and kissed my palm. My hand tingled. His blue eyes searched my face desperately, wanting, needing something from me. I wanted to say something to reassure him. I wanted to offer him comfort. I just couldn't frame the words. His supplication stirred me. I felt a deep bond with him, a strong connection. I wanted to help him, I wanted to be his friend, and I wanted...maybe something more. I tried to identify and categorize my reactions to him. What I felt for him seemed too complicated to define, but it soon became obvious to me that the strongest emotion I felt, the one that was stirring my heart, was...love.
Colleen Houck (Tiger's Curse (The Tiger Saga, #1))
You’re sure you want to do this,” Galen says, eyeing me like I’ve grown a tiara of snakes on my head. “Absolutely.” I unstrap the four-hundred-dollar silver heels and spike them into the sand. When he starts unraveling his tie, I throw out my hand. “No! Leave it. Leave everything on.” Galen frowns. “Rachel would kill us both. In our sleep. She would torture us first.” “This is our prom night. Rachel would want us to enjoy ourselves.” I pull the thousand-or-so bobby pins from my hair and toss them in the sand. Really, both of us are right. She would want us to be happy. But she would also want us to stay in our designer clothes. Leaning over, I shake my head like a wet dog, dispelling the magic of hairspray. Tossing my hair back, I look at Galen. His crooked smile almost melts me where I stand. I’m just glad to see a smile on his face at all. The last six months have been rough. “Your mother will want pictures,” he tells me. “And what will she do with pictures? There aren’t exactly picture frames in the Royal Caverns.” Mom’s decision to mate with Grom and live as his queen didn’t surprise me. After all, I am eighteen years old, an adult, and can take care of myself. Besides, she’s just a swim away. “She keeps picture frames at her house though. She could still enjoy them while she and Grom come to shore to-“ “Okay, ew. Don’t say it. That’s where I draw the line.” Galen laughs and takes off his shoes. I forget all about Mom and Grom. Galen, barefoot in the sand, wearing an Armani tux. What more could a girl ask for? “Don’t look at me like that, angelfish,” he says, his voice husky. “Disappointing your grandfather is the last thing I want to do.” My stomach cartwheels. Swallowing doesn’t help. “I can’t admire you, even from afar?” I can’t quite squeeze enough innocence in there to make it believable, to make it sound like I wasn’t thinking the same thing he was. Clearing his throat, he nods. “Let’s get on with this.” He closes the distance between us, making foot-size potholes with his stride. Grabbing my hand, he pulls me to the water. At the edge of the wet sand, just out of reach of the most ambitious wave, we stop. “You’re sure?” he says again. “More than sure,” I tell him, giddiness swimming through my veins like a sneaking eel. Images of the conference center downtown spring up in my mind. Red and white balloons, streamers, a loud, cheesy DJ yelling over the starting chorus of the next song. Kids grinding against one another on the dance floor to lure the chaperones’ attention away from a punch bowl just waiting to be spiked. Dresses spilling over with skin, matching corsages, awkward gaits due to six-inch heels. The prom Chloe and I dreamed of. But the memories I wanted to make at that prom died with Chloe. There could never be any joy in that prom without her. I couldn’t walk through those doors and not feel that something was missing. A big something. No, this is where I belong now. No balloons, no loud music, no loaded punch bowl. Just the quiet and the beach and Galen. This is my new prom. And for some reason, I think Chloe would approve.
Anna Banks (Of Triton (The Syrena Legacy, #2))
Ruby and Aaron are both crazy patient; they’re good parents.” “I could be a good dad,” Ivan whispered, still feeding Jess. I could have told him he’d be good at anything he wanted to be good at, but nah. “Do you want to have kids?” he asked me out of the blue. I handed Benny another block. “A long time from now, maybe.” “A long time… like how long?” That had me glancing at Ivan over my shoulder. He had his entire attention on Jessie, and I was pretty sure he was smiling down at her. Huh. “My early thirties, maybe? I don’t know. I might be okay with not having any either. I haven’t really thought about it much, except for knowing I don’t want to have them any time soon, you know what I mean?” “Because of figure skating?” “Why else? I barely have enough time now. I couldn’t imagine trying to train and have kids. My baby daddy would have to be a rich, stay-at-home dad for that to work.” Ivan wrinkled his nose at my niece. “There are at least ten skaters I know with kids.” I rolled my eyes and poked Benny in the side when he held out his little hand for another block. That got me a toothy grin. “I’m not saying it’s impossible. I just wouldn’t want to do it any time soon. I don’t want to half-ass or regret it. If they ever exist, I’d want them to be my priority. I wouldn’t want them to think they were second best.” Because I knew what that felt like. And I’d already screwed up enough with making grown adults I loved think they weren’t important. If I was going to do something, I wanted to do my best and give it everything. All he said was, “Hmm.” A thought came into my head and made my stomach churn. “Why? Are you planning on having kids any time soon?” “I wasn’t,” he answered immediately. “I like this baby though, and that one. Maybe I need to think about it.” I frowned, the feeling in my stomach getting more intense. He kept blabbing. “I could start training my kids really young…. I could coach them. Hmm.” It was my turn to wrinkle my nose. “Three hours with two kids and now you want them?” Ivan glanced down at me with a smirk. “With the right person. I’m not going to have them with just anybody and dilute my blood.” I rolled my eyes at this idiot, still ignoring that weird feeling in my belly that I wasn’t going to acknowledge now or ever. “God forbid, you have kids with someone that’s not perfect. Dumbass.” “Right?” He snorted, looking down at the baby before glancing back at me with a smile I wasn’t a fan of. “They might come out short, with mean, squinty, little eyes, a big mouth, heavy bones, and a bad attitude.” I blinked. “I hope you get abducted by aliens.” Ivan laughed, and the sound of it made me smile. “You would miss me.” All I said, while shrugging was, “Meh. I know I’d get to see you again someday—” He smiled. “—in hell.” That wiped the look right off his face. “I’m a good person. People like me.” “Because they don’t know you. If they did, somebody would have kicked your ass already.” “They’d try,” he countered, and I couldn’t help but laugh. There was something wrong with us. And I didn’t hate it. Not even a little bit.
Mariana Zapata (From Lukov with Love)
Wiseman speculated that what we call luck is actually a pattern of behaviors that coincide with a style of understanding and interacting with the events and people you encounter throughout life. Unlucky people are narrowly focused, he observed. They crave security and tend to be more anxious, and instead of wading into the sea of random chance open to what may come, they remain fixated on controlling the situation, on seeking a specific goal. As a result, they miss out on the thousands of opportunities that may float by. Lucky people tend to constantly change routines and seek out new experiences. Wiseman saw that the people who considered themselves lucky, and who then did actually demonstrate luck was on their side over the course of a decade, tended to place themselves into situations where anything could happen more often and thus exposed themselves to more random chance than did unlucky people. The lucky try more things, and fail more often, but when they fail they shrug it off and try something else. Occasionally, things work out.
David McRaney (You Are Not So Smart: Why You Have Too Many Friends on Facebook, Why Your Memory Is Mostly Fiction, and 46 Other Ways You're Deluding Yourself)
I hope I’m being clear, I didn’t say I hate feminists, that would be weird. I said I hate feminist. I’m talking about the word. I have the privilege living my life inside of words and part of being a writer is creating entire universes, and that's beautiful, but part of being a writer is also living in the very smallest part of every word. ...But the word feminist, it doesn't sit with me, it doesn't add up. I want to talk about my problem that I have with it. ...Ist in it's meaning is also a problem for me. Because you can't be born an ist. It's not natural... So feminist includes the idea that believing men and women to be equal, believing all people to be people, is not a natural state. That we don't emerge assuming that everybody in the human race is a human, that the idea of equality is just an idea that's imposed on us. That we are indoctrinated with it, that it's an agenda... ...My problem with feminist is not the word. It's the question. "Are you now, or have you ever been, a feminist?" The great Katy Perry once said—I'm paraphrasing—"I'm not a feminist but I like it when women are strong."...Don't know why she feels the need to say the first part, but listening to the word and thinking about it, I realize I do understand. This question that lies before us is one that should lie behind us. The word is problematic for me because there's another word that we're missing... ...When you say racist, you are saying that is a negative thing. That is a line that we have crossed. Anything on the side of that line is shameful, is on the wrong side of history. And that is a line that we have crossed in terms of gender but we don't have the word for it... ...I start thinking about the fact that we have this word when we're thinking about race that says we have evolved beyond something and we don't really have this word for gender. Now you could argue sexism, but I'd say that's a little specific. People feel removed from sexism. ‘I'm not a sexist, but I'm not a feminist.' They think there's this fuzzy middle ground. There's no fuzzy middle ground. You either believe that women are people or you don't. It's that simple. ...You don’t have to hate someone to destroy them. You just have to not get it. ...My pitch is this word. ‘Genderist.’ I would like this word to become the new racist. I would like a word that says there was a shameful past before we realized that all people were created equal. And we are past that. And every evolved human being who is intelligent and educated and compassionate and to say I don't believe that is unacceptable. And Katy Perry won't say, "I'm not a feminist but I like strong women," she'll say, "I'm not a genderist but sometimes I like to dress up pretty." And that'll be fine. ...This is how we understand society. The word racism didn't end racism, it contextualized it in a way that we still haven't done with this issue. ...I say with gratitude but enormous sadness, we will never not be fighting. And I say to everybody on the other side of that line who believe that women are to be bought and trafficked or ignored...we will never not be fighting. We will go on, we will always work this issue until it doesn't need to be worked anymore. ...Is this idea of genderist going to do something? I don't know. I don't think that I can change the world. I just want to punch it up a little.
Joss Whedon
Once a year, the inhabitants shut themselves up in their houses, made two lists, turned to face the highest mountain and then raised their first list to the heavens. '“Here, Lord, are all the sins I have committed against you,” they said, reading the account of all the sins they had committed. Business swindles, adulteries, injustices, things of that sort. “I have sinned and beg forgiveness for having offended You so greatly.” 'Then - and here lay Ahab's originality - the residents immediately pulled the second list out of their pocket and, still facing the same mountain, they held that one up to the skies too. And they said something like: “And here, Lord, is a list of all Your sins against me: You made me work harder than necessary, my daughter fell ill despite all my prayers, I as robbed when I was trying to be honest, I suffered more than was fair.” After reading out the second list, they ended the ritual I have been unjust towards You and You have been towards me. However, since today is the Day of Atonement, You will forget my faults and I will forget Yours and we can carry on together for another year.
Paulo Coelho (The Devil and Miss Prym)
When our children were very small, I started to write down a few things about what happened every day….I wrote down a few lines every day for years. I never missed a day no matter how tired I was or how early I would have to start the next day. Before I would write, I would ponder this question: “Have I seen the hand of God reaching out to touch us or our children or our family today?” As I kept at it, something began to happen. As I would cast my mind over the day, I would see evidence of what God had done for one of us that I had not recognized in the busy moments of the day.' I would suggest that you keep a paper and pencil you your side as you read this book, particularly the stories and examples shared here. I am confident that as you read the stories of others, you will be reminded of times in your life when the Lord has given you special blessings. Or perhaps thoughts will come that will teach you what to do to have your own tender mercies. Write them down, and, if appropriate, share them with your families.
Henry B. Eyring
It would be incorrect in every sense to say that so near the end of his life he had lost his faith, when in fact God seemed more abundant to him in the Regina Cleri home than any place he had been before. God was in the folds of his bathrobe, the ache of his knees. God saturated the hallways in the form of a pale electrical light. But now that his heart had become so shiftless and unreliable, now that he should be sensing the afterlife like a sweet scent drifting in from the garden, he had started to wonder if there was in fact no afterlife at all. Look at all these true believers who wanted only to live, look at himself, cling onto this life like a squirrel scrambling up the icy pitch of a roof. In suggesting that there may be nothing ahead of them, he in no way meant to diminish the future; instead, Father Sullivan hoped to elevate the present to a state of the divine. It seemed from this moment of repose that God may well have been life itself. God may have been the baseball games, the beautiful cigarette he smoked alone after checking to see that all the bats had been put back behind the closet door. God could have been the masses in which he had told people how best to prepare for the glorious life everlasting, the one they couldn't see as opposed to the one they were living at that exact moment in the pews of the church hall, washed over in stained glass light. How wrongheaded it seemed now to think that the thrill of heartbeat and breath were just a stepping stone to something greater. What could be greater than the armchair, the window, the snow? Life itself had been holy. We had been brought forth from nothing to see the face of God and in his life Father Sullivan had seen it miraculously for eighty-eight years. Why wouldn't it stand to reason that this had been the whole of existence and now he would retreat back to the nothingness he had come from in order to let someone else have their turn at the view. This was not the workings of disbelief. It was instead a final, joyful realization of all he had been given. It would be possible to overlook just about anything if you were trained to constantly strain forward to see the power and the glory that was waiting up ahead. What a shame it would have been to miss God while waiting for him.
Ann Patchett (Run)
Long black hair and deep clean blue eyes and skin pale white and lips blood red she's small and thin and worn and damaged. She is standing there. What are you doing here? I was taking a walk and I saw you and I followed you. What do you want. I want you to stop. I breathe hard, stare hard, tense and coiled. There is still more tree for me to destroy I want that fucking tree. She smiles and she steps towards me, toward toward toward me, and she opens he r arms and I'm breathing hard staring hard tense and coiled she puts her arms around me with one hand not he back of my head and she pulls me into her arms and she holds me and she speaks. It's okay. I breathe hard, close my eyes, let myself be held. It's okay. Her voice calms me and her arms warm me and her smell lightens me and I can feel her heart beat and my heart slows and I stop shaking an the Fury melts into her safety an she holds me and she says. Okay. Okay. Okay. Something else comes and it makes me feel weak and scared and fragile and I don't want to be hurt and this feeling is the feeling I have when I know I can be hurt and hurt deeper and more terribly than anything physical and I always fight it and control it and stop it but her voice calms me and her arms warm me and her smell lightens me and I can feel her heart beat and if she let me go right now I would fall and the need and confusion and fear and regret and horror and shame and weakness and fragility are exposed to the soft strength of her open arms and her simple word okay and I start to cry. I start to cry. I want to cry. It comes in waves. THe waves roll deep and from deep the deep within me and I hold her and she holds me tighter and i let her and I let it and I let this and I have not felt this way this vulnerability or allowed myself to feel this way this vulnerability since I was ten years old and I don't know why I haven't and I don't know why I am now and I only know that I am and that it is scary terrifying frightening worse and better than anything I've ever felt crying in her arms just crying in her ams just crying. She guides me to the ground, but she doesn't let me go. THe Gates are open and thirteen years of addiction, violence, hell and their accompaniments are manifesting themselves in dense tears and heavy sobs and a shortness of breath and a profound sense of loss. THe loss inhabits, fills and overwhelms me. It is the loss of a childhood of being a Teeenager of normalcy of happiness of love of trust anon reason of God of Family of friends of future of potential of dignity of humanity of sanity f myself of everything everything everything. I lost everything and I am lost reduced to a mass of mourning, sadness, grief, anguish and heartache. I am lost. I have lost. Everything. Everything. It's wet and Lilly cradles me like a broken Child. My face and her shoulder and her shirt and her hair are wet with my tears. I slow down and I start to breathe slowly and deeply and her hair smells clean and I open my eyes because I want to see it an it is all that I can see. It is jet black almost blue and radiant with moisture. I want to touch it and I reach with one of my hands and I run my hand from the crown along her neck and her back to the base of her rib and it is a thin perfect sheer and I let it slowly drop from the tips of my fingers and when it is gone I miss it. I do it again and again and she lets me do it and she doesn't speak she just cradles me because I am broken. I am broken. Broken. THere is noise and voices and Lilly pulls me in tighter and tighter and I know I pull her in tighter and tighter and I can feel her heart beating and I know she can feel my heart beating and they are speaking our hearts are speaking a language wordless old unknowable and true and we're pulling and holding and the noise is closer and the voices louder and Lilly whispers. You're okay. You're okay. You're okay.
James Frey
What happened isn't your fault." "Maybe. But maybe this wouldn't have happened if I'd run away with you." "You still can." "No, I can't." I shook my head. "I have so much I need to do here. I can't just leave it all behind. But you can stay here. I will grant you amnesty." "Mmm, I knew it." He smiled. "You'd miss me too much if I left." I laughed. "Hardly." "Hardly?" Loki smirked. He'd lowered his arm, so his hand was on my waist. Loki was incredibly near, and his muscles pressed against me. I knew that I should move away, that I had no justifiable reason to be this close to him, but I didn't move. "Would you?" Loki asked, his voice low. "Would I what?" "Would you run away with me, if you didn't have all the responsibilities and the palace and all that?" "I don't know," I said. "I think you would." "Of course you do." I looked away from him, but I didn't move away. "Where did you get the pajamas, by the way? You didn't bring anything with you when you came." "I don't want to tell you." "Why not?" I looked sharply at him. "Because. I'll tell you, and it will ruin this whole mood," Loki said. "Can't we just sit here and look longingly into each other's eyes until we fall into each other's arms, kissing passionately?" "No," I said and finally started to pull away from him. "Not if you don't tell me-" "Tove," Loki said quickly, trying to hang on to me. He was much stronger than me, but he let me push him off. "Of course." I stood up. "That's exactly the kind of thing my fiancé would do. He's always thinking of other people." "It's just pajamas!" Loki insisted, like that would mean something. "Sure, he's a terrifically nice guy, but that doesn't matter." "How does that not matter?" I asked. "Because you don't love him." "I care about him," I said, and he shrugged. "And it's not like I love you." "Maybe not," he allowed. "But you will." "You think so?" I asked. "Mark my words, Princess," Loki said. "One day, you'll be madly in love with me." "Okay." I laughed, because I didn't know how else to respond. "But I should go. If I've given you amnesty, that means I have to go about enacting it, and getting everyone to agree that it's not a suicidal decision." "Thank you." "You're welcome," I said and opened the door to go. "It was worth it," Loki said suddenly. "What was?" I turned back to him. "Everything I went through," he said. "For you. It was worth it.
Amanda Hocking (Ascend (Trylle, #3))
Miss Taggart, do you know the hallmark of the second-rater? It's resentment of another man's achievement. Those touchy mediocrities who sit trembling lest someone's work prove greater than their own-they have no inkling of the loneliness that comes when you reach the top. The loneliness for an equal-for a mind to respect and achievement to admire. They bare their teeth at you from out of their rat holes, thinking that you take pleasure in letting your brilliance dim them-while you'd give a year of your life to see a flicker of talent anywhere among them. They envy achievement, and their dream of greatness is a world where all men have become their acknowledged inferiors. They don't know that that dream is the infallible proof of mediocrity, because that sort of world is what the man of achievement would not be able to bear. They have no way of knowing what he feels when surrounded by inferiors-hatred? no, not hatred, but boredom-there terrible hopeless, draining, parlaying boredom. Of what account are praise and adulation from men whom you don't respect? Have you ever felt the longing for someone you could admire? For something, not to look down at, but up to?
Ayn Rand (Atlas Shrugged)
Jace," said Simon as Jace watched Clary and smiled. Jace glanced at him and looked annoyed. "Remember when you told me that you wished I could remember?" "Why are you asking me if I remember things?" Jace asked, sounding definitely annoyed. "I'm not the one who has problems with remembering. Remember?" "I just wondered what you meant by that." Simon waited, giving Jace a chance to take advantage of his demon amnesia and tell him another fake secret. Instead, Jace looked incredibly uncomfortable. "Nothing," he said. "What would I mean? Nothing." "Did you just mean you wanted me to remember the past generally?" Simon asked. "So I'd remember all the adventures we had and the manly bonds we formed together?" Jace continued to make an uncomfortable face. Simon remembered Alec saying Jace was so upset. "Wait, was that actually it?" Simon asked incredulously. "Did you miss me?" "Obviously not!" snapped Jace. "I would never miss you. I, um, was talking about something specific." "Okay. So, what specific thing did you want me to recall?" Simon asked. He eyed Jace suspiciously. "Was it the biting?" "No!" said Jace. "Was that a special moment for you?" Simon asked. "One that you wanted me to remember that we shared?" "Remember this moment," said Jace. "At the very next opportunity that offers, I am going to leave you to die at the bottom of an evil boat. I want you to remember why." Simon smiled to himself. "No, you won't. You would never leave me to die at the bottom of an evil boat," he muttered as Alec strolled over to the slanted sofa and Jace looked outraged by what he was hearing.
Cassandra Clare (Born to Endless Night (Tales from the Shadowhunter Academy, #9))
Half of my heart says it would be so simple to share what we've got here with the Charynites in the valley. But the other half of me says I don't want to share it with the enemy, and then I have to work out who the enemy is. I mean, look at what we have," he said, pointing outside at the lushness of their mountain, even in the winter haze. "And look how little they have down there. And why don't I care?" Yata laughed. "Well, from where I'm sitting, it looks as if you do care, Lucian," she said. "Too much in one place, not enough in another, and wouldn't it be simpler if we all shared? Yes, it would be so simple to share. But there's no place for being simple when blood has been shed and the people we love have been torn from us. But forgiveness has to start somewhere. It started with Phaedra. The Monts learned not to hate all Charynites because of her. I learned. Because you may not have seen it, my darling boy, but I hated with a fierceness I can't describe. And do you want to hear something that was breaking my heart, day after day? I forgot the faces of my granddaughters in all that hatred. Hatred smothers all beauty. Beloved Isaboe has little resemblance to her older sisters, but your Phaedra - she made me remember those precious, precious girls, and I wasn't angry anymore. I just missed them, and it's the beauty in here," she said, pointing to her chest, "that made me remember them. Her beauty.
Melina Marchetta (Quintana of Charyn (Lumatere Chronicles, #3))
I thought vampires could rematerialize in their clothes," said Angua accusingly. "Otto Chriek can!" "Females can't. We don't know why. It's probably part of the whole underwired-nightdress business. That's where you score again, of course. When you're in one hundred and fifty bat bodies, it's quite hard to remember to keep two of them carrying a pair of pants." Sally looked up at the ceiling, and sighed. "Look, I can see where this is going. It's going to be about Captain Carrot, isn't it . . . " "I saw the way you were smiling at him!" "I'm sorry! We can be very personable! It's a vampire thing!" "You were so keen to impress him, eh!" "And you aren't? He's the kind of many anyone would want to impress!" They watched each other warily. "He is mine, you know," said Angua, feeling the nascent claws strain under her fingernails. "You're his, you mean!" said Sally. "You know it works like that. You trail after him." "I'm sorry! It's a werewolf thing!" Anuga yelled. "Hold it!" Sally thrust both hands in front of her in a gesture of peace. "There's something we'd better sort before this goes any further!" "Yeah?" "Yes. We're both wearing nothing, we're standing in what, you may have noticed, is increasingly turning into mud, and we're squaring up to fight. Okay. But there's something missing, yes?" "And that is . . . ?" "A paying audience? We could make a fortune." Sally winked. "Or we could do the job we came here to do.
Terry Pratchett (Thud! (Discworld, #34; City Watch, #7))
So tell me, Miss Fitt, do you know when your brother will return?" "No." I wet my lips. "Do you know Elijah?" He looked off to the right. "I know of your brother." "Oh?" "Of course." He folded his arms over his chest and returned his gaze to me. "Everyone knows of the Philadelphia Fitts.I even know of you." "You mean Allison told you about me." His lips twitched. "Certainly." I stroked my amethysts and made my expression passive. I didn't care one whit about her gossip-though I did wish she wouldn't talk about me to Clarence. I'd prefer if eligible young men learned my faults after meeting me. He flashed his eyebrows playfully, as if knowing where my thoughts had gone. "You needn't worry. She's said nothing unkind. She finds you amusing-she likes to talk, you know?" "I hadn't noticed," I said flatly. Saying Allison loved to gossip was like saying birds enjoyed flying. It was not so much a hobby as part of her physiology. Clarence's smile expanded, and his eyes crinkled. "Apparently there was an insult you gave her a few days ago, though...She had to ask me what it meant." My face warmed, and I looked away. "I believe I might have called her a spoiled Portia with no concept of mercy." He laughed and hit his knee. "That's right. Portia's speech on mercy in the final act of The Merchant of Venice. Allie had no idea what you meant." "In my defense, she was taunting me-" "With no mercy?" "Something like that," I mumbled, embarrassed he'd heard abou tit. "Oh,I have no doubt. One of Allie's charms is her childish teasing." He laughed again and shook his head. "Next time, though, I suggest you use less obscure insults. They might hit their mark better.
Susan Dennard (Something Strange and Deadly (Something Strange and Deadly, #1))
Your life is written in indelible ink. There's no going back to erase the past, tweak your mistakes, or fill in missed opportunities. When the moment's over, your fate is sealed. But if look closer, you notice the ink never really dries on any our experiences. They can change their meaning the longer you look at them. Klexos. There are ways of thinking about the past that aren't just nostalgia or regret. A kind of questioning that enriches an experience after the fact. To dwell on the past is to allow fresh context to trickle in over the years, and fill out the picture; to keep the memory alive, and not just as a caricature of itself. So you can look fairly at a painful experience, and call it by its name. Time is the most powerful force in the universe. It can turn a giant into someone utterly human, just trying to make their way through. Or tell you how you really felt about someone, even if you couldn't at the time. It can put your childhood dreams in context with adult burdens or turn a universal consensus into an embarrassing fad. It can expose cracks in a relationship that once seemed perfect. Or keep a friendship going by thoughts alone, even if you'll never see them again. It can flip your greatest shame into the source of your greatest power, or turn a jolt of pride into something petty, done for the wrong reasons, or make what felt like the end of the world look like a natural part of life. The past is still mostly a blank page, so we may be doomed to repeat it. But it's still worth looking into if it brings you closer to the truth. Maybe it's not so bad to dwell in the past, and muddle in the memories, to stem the simplification of time, and put some craft back into it. Maybe we should think of memory itself as an art form, in which the real work begins as soon as the paint hits the canvas. And remember that a work of art is never finished, only abandoned.
The Dictionary of Obscure Sorrows
The point is, there was a gap in Miss Emily's calendar collection: none of them had a single picture of Norfolk. I'd always wonder each lesson if this time she'd found a picture, but it was always the same. She'd wave her pointer over the map and say, as a sort of afterthought: 'And over here, we've got Norfolk. Very nice there.' Then, that particular time, I remember how she paused and drifted off into thought. Eventually she came out of her dream and tapped the map again. 'You see, because it's stuck out here on the east, on this hump jutting into the sea, it's not on the way to anywhere. People going north and south, they bypass it altogether. For that reason, it's a peaceful corner of England, rather nice. But it's also something of a lost corner.' Someone claimed after the lesson that Miss Emily had said Norfolk was England's 'lost corner' because that was were all the lost property found in the country ended up. Ruth said one evening, looking out at the sunset, that 'when we lost something precious, and we'd looked and looked and still couldn't find it, then we didn't have to be completely heartbroken. We still had that last bit of comfort, thinking one day, when we were grown up, and we were free to travel the country, we could always go and find it again in Norfolk.
Kazuo Ishiguro (Never Let Me Go)
More seriously-and this is probably why there has been a lot of garbage talked about a lost generation-it was easy to see, all over the landscape of contemporary fiction, the devastating effect of the Thatcher years. So many of these writers wrote without hope. They had lost all ambition, all desire to to wrestle with the world. Their books dealt with tiny patches of the world, tiny pieces of human experience-a council estate, a mother, a father, a lost job. Very few writers had the courage or even the energy to bite off a big chunk of the universe and chew it over. Very few showed any linguistic or formal innovation. Many were dulled and therefore dull. (And then, even worse, there were the Hooray Henries and Sloanes who evidently thought that the day of the yuppie novel, and the Bellini-drinking, okay-yah fiction had dawned. Dukedoms and country-house bulimics abounded. It was plain that too may books were being published; that too many writers had found their way into print without any justification for it at all; that too many publishers had adopted a kind of random, scattergun policy of publishing for turnover and just hoping that something would strike a cord. When the general picture is so disheartening, it is easy to miss the good stuff. I agreed to be a judge for "Best of Young British Novelists II" because I wanted to find out for myself if the good stuff really was there. In my view, it is...One of my old schoolmasters was fond of devising English versions of the epigrams of Martial. I remember only one, his version of Martial's message to a particularly backward-looking critic: "You only praise the good old days We young 'uns get no mention. I don't see why I have to die To gain your kind attention.
Salman Rushdie (Step Across This Line: Collected Nonfiction 1992-2002)
What's Toraf's favorite color?" She shrugs. "Whatever I tell him it is." I raise a brow at her. "Don't know, huh?" She crosses her arms. "Who cares anyway? We're not painting his toenails." "I think what's she's trying to say, honey bunches, is that maybe you should paint your nails his favorite color, to show him you're thinking about him," Rachel says, seasoning her words with tact. Rayna sets her chin. "Emma doesn't paint her nails Galen's favorite color." Startled that Galen has a favorite color and I don't know it, I say, "Uh, well, he doesn't like nail polish." That is to say, he's never mentioned it before. When a brilliant smile lights up her whole face, I know I've been busted. "You don't know his favorite color!" she says, actually pointing at me. "Yes, I do," I say, searching Rachel's face for the answer. She shrugs. Rayna's smirk is the epitome of I know something you don't know. Smacking it off her face is my first reflex, but I hold back, as I always do, because of the kiss I shared with Toraf and the way it hurt her. Sometimes I catch her looking at me with that same expression she had on the beach, and I feel like fungus, even though she deserved it at the time. Refusing to fold, I eye the buffet of nail polish scattered before me. Letting my fingers roam over the bottles, I shop the paints, hoping one of them stands out to me. To save my life, I can't think of any one color he wears more often. He doesn't have a favorite sport, so team colors are a no-go. Rachel picked his cars for him, so that's no help either. Biting my lip, I decide on an ocean blue. "Emma! Now I'm just ashamed of myself," he says from the doorway. "How could you not know my favorite color?" Startled, I drop the bottle back on the table. Since he's back so soon, I have to assume he didn't find what or who he wanted-and that he didn't hunt them for very long. Toraf materializes behind him, but Galen's shoulders are too broad to allow them both to stand in the doorway. Clearing my throat, I say, "I was just moving that bottle to get to the color I wanted." Rayna is all but doing a victory dance with her eyes. "Which is?" she asks, full of vicious glee. Toraf pushes past Galen and plops down next to his tiny mate. She leans into him, eager for his kiss. "I missed you," she whispers. "Not as much as I missed you," he tells her. Galen and I exchange eye rolls as he walks around to prop himself on the table beside me, his wet shorts making a butt-shaped puddle on the expensive wood. "Go ahead, angelfish," he says, nodding toward the pile of polish. If he's trying to give me a clue, he sucks at it. "Go" could mean green, I guess. "Ahead" could mean...I have no idea what that could mean. And angelfish come in all sorts of colors. Deciding he didn't encode any messages for me, I sigh and push away from the table to stand. "I don't know. We've never talked about it before." Rayna slaps her knee in triumph. "Ha!" Before I can pass by him, Galen grabs my wrist and pulls me to him, corralling me between his legs. Crushing his mouth to mine, he moves his hand to the small of my back and presses me into him. Since he's still shirtless and I'm in my bikini, there's a lot of bare flesh touching, which is a little more intimate than I'm used to with an audience. Still, the fire sears through me, scorching a path to the furthest, deepest parts of me. It takes every bit of grit I have not to wrap my arms around his neck. Gently, I push my hands against his chest to end the kiss, which is something I never thought I'd do. Giving him a look that I hope conveys "inappropriate," I step back. I've spent enough time in their company to know without looking that Rayna's eyes are bugging out of their sockets and Toraf is grinning like a nutcracker doll. With any luck, Rachel didn't even see the kiss. Stealing a peek at her, she meets my gaze with openmouthed shock. Okay, it looked as bad as I thought it did.
Anna Banks (Of Poseidon (The Syrena Legacy, #1))
HAZEL WASN’T PROUD OF CRYING. After the tunnel collapsed, she wept and screamed like a two-year-old throwing a tantrum. She couldn’t move the debris that separated her and Leo from the others. If the earth shifted any more, the entire complex might collapse on their heads. Still, she pounded her fists against the stones and yelled curses that would’ve earned her a mouth-washing with lye soap back at St. Agnes Academy. Leo stared at her, wide-eyed and speechless. She wasn’t being fair to him. The last time the two of them had been together, she’d zapped him into her past and shown him Sammy, his great-grandfather—Hazel’s first boyfriend. She’d burdened him with emotional baggage he didn’t need, and left him so dazed they had almost gotten killed by a giant shrimp monster. Now here they were, alone again, while their friends might be dying at the hands of a monster army, and she was throwing a fit. “Sorry.” She wiped her face. “Hey, you know…” Leo shrugged. “I’ve attacked a few rocks in my day.” She swallowed with difficulty. “Frank is…he’s—” “Listen,” Leo said. “Frank Zhang has moves. He’s probably gonna turn into a kangaroo and do some marsupial jujitsu on their ugly faces.” He helped her to her feet. Despite the panic simmering inside her, she knew Leo was right. Frank and the others weren’t helpless. They would find a way to survive. The best thing she and Leo could do was carry on. She studied Leo. His hair had grown out longer and shaggier, and his face was leaner, so he looked less like an imp and more like one of those willowy elves in the fairy tales. The biggest difference was his eyes. They constantly drifted, as if Leo was trying to spot something over the horizon. “Leo, I’m sorry,” she said. He raised an eyebrow. “Okay. For what?” “For…” She gestured around her helplessly. “Everything. For thinking you were Sammy, for leading you on. I mean, I didn’t mean to, but if I did—” “Hey.” He squeezed her hand, though Hazel sensed nothing romantic in the gesture. “Machines are designed to work.” “Uh, what?” “I figure the universe is basically like a machine. I don’t know who made it, if it was the Fates, or the gods, or capital-G God, or whatever. But it chugs along the way it’s supposed to most of the time. Sure, little pieces break and stuff goes haywire once in a while, but mostly…things happen for a reason. Like you and me meeting.” “Leo Valdez,” Hazel marveled, “you’re a philosopher.” “Nah,” he said. “I’m just a mechanic. But I figure my bisabuelo Sammy knew what was what. He let you go, Hazel. My job is to tell you that it’s okay. You and Frank—you’re good together. We’re all going to get through this. I hope you guys get a chance to be happy. Besides, Zhang couldn’t tie his shoes without your help.” “That’s mean,” Hazel chided, but she felt like something was untangling inside her—a knot of tension she’d been carrying for weeks. Leo really had changed. Hazel was starting to think she’d found a good friend. “What happened to you when you were on your own?” she asked. “Who did you meet?” Leo’s eye twitched. “Long story. I’ll tell you sometime, but I’m still waiting to see how it shakes out.” “The universe is a machine,” Hazel said, “so it’ll be fine.” “Hopefully.” “As long as it’s not one of your machines,” Hazel added. “Because your machines never do what they’re supposed to.” “Yeah, ha-ha.” Leo summoned fire into his hand. “Now, which way, Miss Underground?” Hazel scanned the path in front of them. About thirty feet down, the tunnel split into four smaller arteries, each one identical, but the one on the left radiated cold. “That way,” she decided. “It feels the most dangerous.” “I’m sold,” said Leo. They began their descent.
Rick Riordan (The House of Hades (Heroes of Olympus, #4))
I relied on him to find answers I couldn’t, to blaze a path when I found myself lost. David saw things no one else did. He saw through the world to the mysteries on the other side. I know that he’s gone on to solve those mysteries.” A faint smile touched Nikolai’s lips. “I can see him in some great library, already lost in his work, head bent to some new problem, making the unknown known. When I enter the laboratory, when I wake in the night with a new idea, I will miss him…” His voice broke. “I miss him now. May the Saints receive him on a brighter shore.” “May the Saints receive him,” the crowd murmured. But David hadn’t believed in Saints. He’d believed in the Small Science. He’d believed in a world ordered by facts and logic. What do you believe? Zoya didn’t know. She believed in Ravka, in her king, in the chance that she could be a part of something better than herself. But maybe she didn’t deserve that. All eyes had turned to Genya now. She was David’s wife, his friend, his compatriot. She was expected to speak. Genya stood straighter, lifted her chin. “I loved him,” she said, her body still trembling as if it had been torn apart and hastily stitched back together. “I loved him and he loved me. When I was … when no one could reach me … he saw me. He…” Genya turned her head to Zoya’s shoulder and sobbed. “I loved him and he loved me.” Was there any greater gift than that? Any more unlikely discovery in this world? “I know,” said Zoya. “He loved you more than anything.” The dragon’s eye had opened and Zoya felt that love, the enormity of what Genya had lost. It was too much to endure knowing she could do nothing to erase that pain
Leigh Bardugo (Rule of Wolves (King of Scars, #2))
My Darling, It is late at night and though the words are coming hard to me, I can’t escape the feeling that it’s time that I finally answer your question. Of course I forgive you. I forgive you now, and I forgave you the moment I read your letter. In my heart, I had no other choice. Leaving you once was hard enough; to have done it a second time would have been impossible. I loved you too much to have let you go again. Though I’m still grieving over what might have been, I find myself thankful that you came into my life for even a short period of time. In the beginning, I’d assumed that we were somehow brought together to help you through your time of grief. Yet now, one year later, I’ve come to believe that it was the other way around. Ironically, I am in the same position you were, the first time we met. As I write, I am struggling with the ghost of someone I loved and lost. I now understand more fully the difficulties you were going through, and I realize how painful it must have been for you to move on. Sometimes my grief is overwhelming, and even though I understand that we will never see each other again, there is a part of me that wants to hold on to you forever. It would be easy for me to do that because loving someone else might diminish my memories of you. Yet, this is the paradox: Even though I miss you greatly, it’s because of you that I don’t dread the future. Because you were able to fall in love with me, you have given me hope, my darling. You taught me that it’s possible to move forward in life, no matter how terrible your grief. And in your own way, you’ve made me believe that true love cannot be denied. Right now, I don’t think I’m ready, but this is my choice. Do not blame yourself. Because of you, I am hopeful that there will come a day when my sadness is replaced by something beautiful. Because of you, I have the strength to go on. I don’t know if spirits do indeed roam the world, but even if they do, I will sense your presence everywhere. When I listen to the ocean, it will be your whispers; when I see a dazzling sunset, it will be your image in the sky. You are not gone forever, no matter who comes into my life. you are standing with God, alongside my soul, helping to guide me toward a future that I cannot predict. This is not a good-bye, my darling, this is a thank-you. Thank you for coming into my life and giving me joy, thank you for loving me and receiving my love in return. Thank you for the memories I will cherish forever. But most of all, thank you for showing me that there will come a time when I can eventually let you go. I love you
Nicholas Sparks (Message in a Bottle)
I’ve been in your skin,” he taunted. “I know you inside and out. There’s nothing there. Do us all a favor and die so we can start working on another plan and quit thinking maybe you’ll grow the fuck up and be capable of something.” Okay, enough! “You don’t know me inside and out,” I snarled. “You may have gotten in my skin, but you have never gotten inside my heart. Go ahead, Barrons, make me slice and dice myself. Go ahead, play games with me. Push me around. Lie to me. Bully me. Be your usual constant jackass self. Stalk around all broody and pissy and secretive, but you’re wrong about me. There’s something inside me you’d better be afraid of. And you can’t touch my soul. You will never touch my soul!” I raised my hand, drew back the knife, and let it fly. It sliced through the air, straight for his head. He avoided it with preternatural grace, a mere whisper of a movement, precisely and only as much as was required to not get hit. The hilt vibrated in the wood of the ornate mantel next to his head. “So, fuck you, Jericho Barrons, and not the way you like it. Fuck you—as in, you can’t touch me. Nobody can.” I kicked the table at him. It crashed into his shins. I picked up a lamp from the end table. Flung it straight at his head. He ducked again. I grabbed a book. It thumped off his chest. He laughed, dark eyes glittering with exhilaration. I launched myself at him, slammed a fist into his face. I heard a satisfying crunch and felt something in his nose give. He didn’t try to hit me back or push me away. Merely wrapped his arms around me and crushed me tight to his body, trapping my arms against his chest. Then, when I thought he might just squeeze me to death, he dropped his head forward, into the hollow where my shoulder met my neck. “Do you miss fucking me, Ms. Lane?” he purred against my ear. Voice resonated in my skull, pressuring a reply. I was tall and strong and proud inside myself. Nobody owned me. I didn’t have to answer any questions I didn’t want to, ever again. “Wouldn’t you just love to know?” I purred back. “You want more of me, don’t you, Barrons? I got under your skin deep. I hope you got addicted to me. I was a wild one, wasn’t I? I bet you never had sex like that in your entire existence, huh, O Ancient One? I bet I rocked your perfectly disciplined little world. I hope wanting me hurts like hell!” His hands were suddenly cruelly tight on my waist. “There’s only one question that matters, Ms. Lane, and it’s the one you never get around to asking. People are capable of varying degrees of truth. The majority spend their entire lives fabricating an elaborate skein of lies, immersing themselves in the faith of bad faith, doing whatever it takes to feel safe. The person who truly lives has precious few moments of safety, learns to thrive in any kind of storm. It’s the truth you can stare down stone-cold that makes you what you are. Weak or strong. Live or die. Prove yourself. How much truth can you take, Ms. Lane?” Dreamfever
Karen Marie Moning
Gustavo Tiberius speaking." “It’s so weird you do that, man,” Casey said, sounding amused. “Every time I call.” “It’s polite,” Gus said. “Just because you kids these days don’t have proper phone etiquette.” “Oh boy, there’s the Grumpy Gus I know. You miss me?” Gus was well aware the others could hear the conversation loud and clear. He was also aware he had a reputation to maintain. “Hadn’t really thought about it.” “Really.” “Yes.” “Gus.” “Casey.” “I miss you.” “I miss you too,” Gus mumbled into the phone, blushing fiercely. “Yeah? How much?” Gus was in hell. “A lot,” he said truthfully. “There have been allegations made against my person of pining and moping. False allegations, mind you, but allegations nonetheless.” “I know what you mean,” Casey said. “The guys were saying the same thing about me.” Gus smiled. “How embarrassing for you.” “Completely. You have no idea.” “They’re going to get you packed up this week?” “Ah, yeah. Sure. Something like that.” “Casey.” “Yes, Gustavo.” “You’re being cagey.” “I have no idea what you mean. Hey, that’s a nice Hawaiian shirt you’ve got on. Pink? I don’t think I’ve seen you in that color before.” Gus shrugged. “Pastor Tommy had a shitload of them. I think I could wear one every day for the rest of the year and not repeat. I think he may have had a bit of a….” Gus trailed off when his hand started shaking. Then, “How did you know what I was wearing?” There was a knock on the window to the Emporium. Gus looked up. Standing on the sidewalk was Casey. He was wearing bright green skinny jeans and a white and red shirt that proclaimed him to be a member of the 1987 Pasadena Bulldogs Women’s Softball team. He looked ridiculous. And like the greatest thing Gus had ever seen. Casey wiggled his eyebrows at Gus. “Hey, man.” “Hi,” Gus croaked. “Come over here, but stay on the phone, okay?” Gus didn’t even argue, unable to take his eyes off Casey. He hadn’t expected him for another week, but here he was on a pretty Saturday afternoon, standing outside the Emporium like it was no big deal. Gus went to the window, and Casey smiled that lazy smile. He said, “Hi.” Gus said, “Hi.” “So, I’ve spent the last two days driving back,” Casey said. “Tried to make it a surprise, you know?” “I’m very surprised,” Gus managed to say, about ten seconds away from busting through the glass just so he could hug Casey close. The smile widened. “Good. I’ve had some time to think about things, man. About a lot of things. And I came to this realization as I drove past Weed, California. Gus. It was called Weed, California. It was a sign.” Gus didn’t even try to stop the eye roll. “Oh my god.” “Right? Kismet. Because right when I entered Weed, California, I was thinking about you and it hit me. Gus, it hit me.” “What did?” Casey put his hand up against the glass. Gus did the same on his side. “Hey, Gus?” “Yeah?” “I’m going to ask you a question, okay?” Gustavo’s throat felt very dry. “Okay.” “What was the Oscar winner for Best Song in 1984?” Automatically, Gus answered, “Stevie Wonder for the movie The Woman in Red. The song was ‘I Just Called to Say I Love You.’” It was fine, of course. Because he knew answers to all those things. He didn’t know why Casey wanted to— And then he could barely breathe. Casey’s smile wobbled a little bit. “Okay?” Gus blinked the burn away. He nodded as best he could. And Casey said, “Yeah, man. I love you too.” Gus didn’t even care that he dropped his phone then. All that mattered was getting as close to Casey as humanely possible. He threw open the door to the Emporium and suddenly found himself with an armful of hipster. Casey laughed wetly into his neck and Gus just held on as hard as he could. He thought that it was possible that he might never be in a position to let go. For some reason, that didn’t bother him in the slightest.
T.J. Klune (How to Be a Normal Person (How to Be, #1))
Hamish Alexander-Harrington knew his wife as only two humans who had both been adopted by a pair of mated treecats ever could. He'd seen her deal with joy and with sorrow, with happiness and with fury, with fear, and even with despair. Yet in all the years since their very first meeting at Yeltsin's Star, he suddenly realized, he had never actually met the woman the newsies called "the Salamander." It wasn't his fault, a corner of his brain told him, because he'd never been in the right place to meet her. Never at the right time. He'd never had the chance to stand by her side as she took a wounded heavy cruiser on an unflinching deathride into the broadside of the battlecruiser waiting to kill it, sailing to her own death, and her crew's, to protect a planet full of strangers while the rich beauty of Hammerwell's "Salute to Spring" spilled from her ship's com system. He hadn't stood beside her on the dew-soaked grass of the Landing City duelling grounds, with a pistol in her hand and vengeance in her heart as she faced the man who'd bought the murder of her first great love. Just as he hadn't stood on the floor of Steadholders' Hall when she faced a man with thirty times her fencing experience across the razor-edged steel of their swords, with the ghosts of Reverend Julius Hanks, the butchered children of Mueller Steading, and her own murdered steaders at her back. But now, as he looked into the unyielding flint of his wife's beloved, almond eyes, he knew he'd met the Salamander at last. And he recognized her as only another warrior could. Yet he also knew in that moment that for all his own imposing record of victory in battle, he was not and never had been her equal. As a tactician and a strategist, yes. Even as a fleet commander. But not as the very embodiment of devastation. Not as the Salamander. Because for all the compassion and gentleness which were so much a part of her, there was something else inside Honor Alexander-Harrington, as well. Something he himself had never had. She'd told him, once, that her own temper frightened her. That she sometimes thought she could have been a monster under the wrong set of circumstances. And now, as he realized he'd finally met the monster, his heart twisted with sympathy and love, for at last he understood what she'd been trying to tell him. Understood why she'd bound it with the chains of duty, and love, of compassion and honor, of pity, because, in a way, she'd been right. Under the wrong circumstances, she could have been the most terrifying person he had ever met. In fact, at this moment, she was . It was a merciless something, her "monster"—something that went far beyond military talent, or skills, or even courage. Those things, he knew without conceit, he, too, possessed in plenty. But not that deeply personal something at the core of her, as unstoppable as Juggernaut, merciless and colder than space itself, that no sane human being would ever willingly rouse. In that instant her husband knew, with an icy shiver which somehow, perversely, only made him love her even more deeply, that as he gazed into those agate-hard eyes, he looked into the gates of Hell itself. And whatever anyone else might think, he knew now that there was no fire in Hell. There was only the handmaiden of death, and ice, and purpose, and a determination which would not— couldnot—relent or rest. "I'll miss them," she told him again, still with that dreadful softness, "but I won't forget. I'll never forget, and one day— oneday, Hamish—we're going to find the people who did this, you and I. And when we do, the only thing I'll ask of God is that He let them live long enough to know who's killing them.
David Weber (Mission of Honor (Honor Harrington, #12))
In the car inching its way down Fifth Avenue, toward Bergdorf Goodman and this glamorous party, I looked back on my past with a new understanding. This sickness, the “endo-whatever,” had stained so much—my sense of self, my womanhood, my marriage, my ability to be present. I had effectively missed one week of each month every year of my life since I was thirteen, because of the chronic pain and hormonal fluctuations I suffered during my period. I had lain in bed, with heating pads and hot-water bottles, using acupuncture, drinking teas, taking various pain medications and suffering the collateral effects of them. I thought of all the many tests I missed in various classes throughout my education, the school dances, the jobs I knew I couldn’t take as a model, because of the bleeding and bloating as well as the pain (especially the bathing suit and lingerie shoots, which paid the most). How many family occasions was I absent from? How many second or third dates did I not go on? How many times had I not been able to be there for others or for myself? How many of my reactions to stress or emotional strife had been colored through the lens of chronic pain? My sense of self was defined by this handicap. The impediment of expected pain would shackle my days and any plans I made. I did not see my own womanhood as something positive or to be celebrated, but as a curse that I had to constantly make room for and muddle through. Like the scar on my arm, my reproductive system was a liability. The disease, developing part and parcel with my womanhood starting at puberty with my menses, affected my own self-esteem and the way I felt about my body. No one likes to get her period, but when your femininity carries with it such pain and consistent physical and emotional strife, it’s hard not to feel that your body is betraying you. The very relationship you have with yourself and your person is tainted by these ever-present problems. I now finally knew my struggles were due to this condition. I wasn’t high-strung or fickle and I wasn’t overreacting.
Padma Lakshmi (Love, Loss, and What We Ate: A Memoir)
Things I've Learned in 18 Years of Life   1) True love is not something found, rather [sic] something encountered. You can’t go out and look for it. The person you marry and the person you love could easily be two different people. So have a beautiful life while waiting for God to bring along your once-in-a-lifetime love. Don't allow yourself to settle for anything less than them. Stop worrying about who you're going to marry because God's already on the front porch watching your grandchildren play.   2) God WILL give you more than you can handle, so you can learn to lean on him in times of need. He won't tempt you more than you can handle, though. So don't lose hope. Hope anchors the soul.   3) Remember who you are and where you came from. Remember that you are not from this earth. You are a child of heaven, you're invaluable, you are beautiful. Carry yourself that way.   4) Don't put your faith in humanity, humanity is inherently flawed. We are all imperfect people created and loved by a perfect God. Perfect. So put your faith in Him.   5) I fail daily, and that is why I succeed.   6) Time passes, and nothing and everything changes. Don't live life half asleep. Don't drag your soul through the days. Feel everything you do. Be there physically and mentally. Do things that make you feel this way as well.   7) Live for beauty. We all need beauty, get it where you can find it. Clothing, paintings, sculptures, music, tattoos, nature, literature, makeup. It's all art and it's what makes us human. Same as feeling the things we do. Stay human.   8) If someone makes you think, keep them. If someone makes you feel, keep them.   9) There is nothing the human brain cannot do. You can change anything about yourself that you want to. Fight for it. It's all a mental game.   10) God didn’t break our chains for us to be bound again. Alcohol, drugs, depression, addiction, toxic relationships, monotony and repetition, they bind us. Break those chains. Destroy your past and give yourself new life like God has given you.   11) This is your life. Your struggle, your happiness, your sorrow, and your success. You do not need to justify yourself to anyone. You owe no one an explanation for the choices that you make and the position you are in. In the same vein, respect yourself by not comparing your journey to anyone else's.   12) There is no wrong way to feel.   13) Knowledge is everywhere, keep your eyes open. Look at how diverse and wonderful this world is. Are you going to miss out on beautiful people, places, experiences, and ideas because you are close-minded? I sure hope not.   14) Selfless actions always benefit you more than the recipient.   15) There is really no room for regret in this life. Everything happens for a reason. If you can't find that reason, accept there is one and move on.   16) There is room, however, for guilt. Resolve everything when it first comes up. That's not only having integrity, but also taking care of your emotional well-being.   17) If the question is ‘Am I strong enough for this?’ The answer is always, ‘Yes, but not on your own.’   18) Mental health and sanity above all.   19) We love because He first loved us. The capacity to love is the ultimate gift, the ultimate passion, euphoria, and satisfaction. We have all of that because He first loved us. If you think about it in those terms, it is easy to love Him. Just by thinking of how much He loves us.   20) From destruction comes creation. Beauty will rise from the ashes.   21) Many things can cause depression. Such as knowing you aren't becoming the person you have the potential to become. Choose happiness and change. The sooner the better, and the easier.   22) Half of happiness is as simple as eating right and exercising. You are one big chemical reaction. So are your emotions. Give your body the right reactants to work with and you'll be satisfied with the products.
Scott Hildreth (Broken People)
When I took it off, I glanced in the mirror behind the dresser, and I nearly screamed when I saw the reflection. Finn was sitting behind me on the bed. His eyes, dark as night, met mine in the mirror, and I could hardly breathe. "Finn!" I gasped and whirled around to look at him. "What are you doing here?" "I missed your birthday," he said, as if that answered my question. He lowered his eyes, looking at a small box he had in his hands. "I got you something." "You got me something?" I leaned back on the dresser behind me, gripping it. "Yeah." He nodded, still staring down at the box. "I picked it up outside of Portland two weeks ago. I meant to get back in time to give it to you on your birthday." He chewed the inside of his cheek. "But now that I'm here, I'm not sure I should give it to you at all." "What are you talking about?" I asked. "It doesn't feel right." Finn rubbed his face. "I don't even know what I'm doing here." "Neither do I," I said. "Don't get me wrong. I'm happy to see you. I just...I don't understand." "I know." He sighed. "It's a ring. What I got you." His gaze moved from me to the engagement ring sitting on the dresser beside me. "And you already have one." "Why did you get me a ring?" I asked tentatively, and my heart beat erratically in my chest. I didn't know what Finn was saying or doing. "I'm not proposing to you, if that's what you're asking." He shook his head. "I saw it and thought of you. But now it seems like poor taste. And here I am, the night before your wedding sneaking in to give you a ring." "Why did you sneak in?" I asked. "I don't know." He looked away and laughed darkly. "That's a lie. I know exactly what I'm doing, but I have no idea why I'm doing it." "What are you doing?" I asked quietly. "I..." Finn stared off for a moment, then turned back to me and stood up. "Finn, I-" I began, but he held up his hand, stopping me. "No, I know you're marrying Tove," he said. "You need to do this. We both know that. It's what's best for you, and it's what I want for you." He paused. "But I want you for myself too." All I'd ever wanted from Finn was for him to admit how he felt about me, and he'd waited until the day before my wedding. It was too late to change anything, to take anything back. Not that I could have, even if I wanted to. "Why are you telling me this?" I asked with tears swimming in my eyes. "Because." Finn stepped toward me, stopping right in front of me. He looked down at me, his eyes mesmerizing me the way they always did. He reached up, brushing back a tear from my cheek. "Why?" I asked, my voice trembling. "I needed you to know," he said, as if he didn't truly understand it himself. He set the box on the dresser beside me, and his hand went to my waist, pulling me to him. I let go of the dresser and let him. My breath came out shallow as I stared up at him. "Tomorrow you will belong to someone else," Finn said. "But tonight, you're with me.
Amanda Hocking (Ascend (Trylle, #3))
Local Girl Missing, Feared Dead. Beneath it was a photo of me-my most recent school photo. “Oh, no.” My heart filling with dread, I took the paper from Mr. Smith’s hands. “Couldn’t they have found a better picture?” Mr. Smith looked at me sharply. “Miss Oliviera,” he said, his gray eyebrows lowered. “I realize it’s all the rage with you young people today to toss off flippant one-liners so you can get your own reality television shows. But I highly doubt MTV will be coming down to Isla Huesos to film you in the Underworld. So that can’t be all you have to say about this.” He was right, of course. Though I couldn’t say what I really wanted to, because John was in the room, and I didn’t want to make him feel worse than he already did. But what I wanted to do was burst into tears. “Is that about Pierce?” John looked uneasy. Outside, thunder rumbled again. This time, it sounded even closer than before. “Yes, of course, it is, John,” Mr. Smith said. There was something strange about his voice. He sounded almost as if he were mad at John. Only why would he be? John had done the right thing. He’d explained about the Furies. “What did you expect? Have you gotten to the part about the reward your father is offering for information leading to your safe return, Miss Oliviera?” My gaze flicked down the page. I wanted to throw up. “One million dollars?” My dad’s company, one of the largest providers in the world of products and services to the oil, gas, and military industries, was valued at several hundred times that. “That cheapskate.” This was all so very, very bad. “One million dollars is a lot of money to most people.” Mr. Smith said, with a strong emphasis on most people. He still had that odd note in his voice. “Though I recognize that money may mean little to a resident of the Underworld. So I’d caution you to use judiciousness, wherever it is that you’re going, as there are many people on this island who’ll be more than willing to turn you in for only a small portion of that reward money. I don’t suppose I might ask where you’re going? Or suggest that you pay a call on your mother, who is beside herself with worry?” “That’s a good idea,” I said. Why hadn’t I thought of it? I felt much better already. I could straighten out this whole thing with a single conversation. “I should call my mom-“ Both Mr. Smith’s cry of alarm and the fact that John grabbed me by the wrist as I was reaching into my book bag for my cell phone stopped me from making calls of any sort. “You can’t use you phone,” Mr. Smith said. “The police-and your father-are surely waiting for you to do just that. They’ll triangulate on the signal from the closest cell tower, and find you.” When I stared at him for his use of the word triangulate, Mr. Smith shook his head and said, “My partner, Patrick, is obsessed with Law & Order reruns.
Meg Cabot (Underworld (Abandon, #2))
I probably should say that this is what makes you a good traveler in my opinion, but deep down I really think this is just universal, incontrovertible truth. There is the right way to travel, and the wrong way. And if there is one philanthropic deed that can come from this book, maybe it will be that I teach a few more people how to do it right. So, in short, my list of what makes a good traveler, which I recommend you use when interviewing your next potential trip partner: 1. You are open. You say yes to whatever comes your way, whether it’s shots of a putrid-smelling yak-butter tea or an offer for an Albanian toe-licking. (How else are you going to get the volcano dust off?) You say yes because it is the only way to really experience another place, and let it change you. Which, in my opinion, is the mark of a great trip. 2. You venture to the places where the tourists aren’t, in addition to hitting the “must-sees.” If you are exclusively visiting places where busloads of Chinese are following a woman with a flag and a bullhorn, you’re not doing it. 3. You are easygoing about sleeping/eating/comfort issues. You don’t change rooms three times, you’ll take an overnight bus if you must, you can go without meat in India and without vegan soy gluten-free tempeh butter in Bolivia, and you can shut the hell up about it. 4. You are aware of your travel companions, and of not being contrary to their desires/​needs/​schedules more often than necessary. If you find that you want to do things differently than your companions, you happily tell them to go on without you in a way that does not sound like you’re saying, “This is a test.” 5. You can figure it out. How to read a map, how to order when you can’t read the menu, how to find a bathroom, or a train, or a castle. 6. You know what the trip is going to cost, and can afford it. If you can’t afford the trip, you don’t go. Conversely, if your travel companions can’t afford what you can afford, you are willing to slum it in the name of camaraderie. P.S.: Attractive single people almost exclusively stay at dumps. If you’re looking for them, don’t go posh. 7. You are aware of cultural differences, and go out of your way to blend. You don’t wear booty shorts to the Western Wall on Shabbat. You do hike your bathing suit up your booty on the beach in Brazil. Basically, just be aware to show the culturally correct amount of booty. 8. You behave yourself when dealing with local hotel clerks/​train operators/​tour guides etc. Whether it’s for selfish gain, helping the reputation of Americans traveling abroad, or simply the spreading of good vibes, you will make nice even when faced with cultural frustrations and repeated smug “not possible”s. This was an especially important trait for an American traveling during the George W. years, when the world collectively thought we were all either mentally disabled or bent on world destruction. (One anecdote from that dark time: in Greece, I came back to my table at a café to find that Emma had let a nearby [handsome] Greek stranger pick my camera up off our table. He had then stuck it down the front of his pants for a photo. After he snapped it, he handed the camera back to me and said, “Show that to George Bush.” Which was obviously extra funny because of the word bush.) 9. This last rule is the most important to me: you are able to go with the flow in a spontaneous, non-uptight way if you stumble into something amazing that will bump some plan off the day’s schedule. So you missed the freakin’ waterfall—you got invited to a Bahamian family’s post-Christening barbecue where you danced with three generations of locals in a backyard under flower-strewn balconies. You won. Shut the hell up about the waterfall. Sally
Kristin Newman (What I Was Doing While You Were Breeding)
When she dies, you are not at first surprised. Part of love is preparing for death. You feel confirmed in your love when she dies. You got it right. This is part of it all. Afterward comes the madness. And then the loneliness: not the spectacular solitude you had anticipated, not the interesting martyrdom of widowhood, but just loneliness. You expect something almost geological-- vertigo in a shelving canyon -- but it's not like that; it's just misery as regular as a job. What do we doctors say? I'm deeply sorry, Mrs Blank; there will of course be a period of mourning but rest assured you will come out of it; two of these each evening, I would suggest; perhaps a new interst, Mrs Blank; can maintenance, formation dancing?; don't worry, six months will see you back on the roundabout; come and see me again any time; oh nurse, when she calls, just give her this repeat will you, no I don't need to see her, well it's not her that's dead is it, look on the bright side. What did she say her name was? And then it happens to you. There's no glory in it. Mourning is full of time; nothing but time.... you should eat stuffed sow's heart. I might yet have to fall back on this remedy. I've tried drink, but what does that do? Drink makes you drunk, that's all it's ever been able to do. Work, they say, cures everything. It doesn't; often, it doesn't even induce tiredness: the nearest you get to it is a neurotic lethargy. And there is always time. Have some more time. Take your time. Extra time. Time on your hands. Other people think you want to talk. 'Do you want to talk about Ellen?' they ask, hinting that they won't be embarrassed if you break down. Sometimes you talk, sometimes you don't; it makes little difference. The word aren't the right ones; or rather, the right words don't exist. 'Language is like a cracked kettle on which we beat out tunes for bears to dance to, while all the time we long to move the stars to pity.' You talk, and you find the language of bereavement foolishly inadequate. You seem to be talking about other people's griefs. I loved her; we were happy; I miss her. She didn't love me; we were unhappy; I miss her. There is a limited choice of prayers on offer: gabble the syllables. And you do come out of it, that's true. After a year, after five. But your don't come out of it like a train coming out of a tunnel, bursting through the Downs into sunshine and that swift, rattling descent to the Channel; you come out of it as a gull comes out of an oil-slick. You are tarred and feathered for life.
Julian Barnes (Flaubert's Parrot)
She narrowed her eyes at him. She wanted to tell him that it was his fault, that she would never have tripped if he’d just stayed the same old Jay he’d always been, gangly and childlike. But she knew that she was being irrational. He was bound to grow up eventually; she’d just never imagined that he’d grow up so well. Instead she accused him: “Well, maybe if you hadn’t pushed me I wouldn’t have fallen.” She made the outlandish accusation with a completely straight face. He shook his head. “You’ll never be able to prove it. There were no witnesses—it’s just your word against mine.” She giggled and hopped down. “Yeah, well, who’s gonna believe you over me? Weren’t you the one who shoplifted a candy bar from the Safeway?” She limped over to the sink while she taunted him with her words, and she washed the dirt from the minor scrapes on her palms. “Whatever! I was seven. And I believe you were the one who handed it to me and told me to hide it in my sleeve. Technically that makes you the mastermind of that little operation, doesn’t it?” He came up behind her, and reaching around her, he poured some of the antibacterial wash onto her hands. She was taken completely off guard by the intimate gesture. She froze as she felt his chest pressing against her back until that was all she could think about for the moment and the temporarily forgot how to speak. She watched as the red scrapes fizzed with white bubbles from the disinfectant. He leaned over her shoulder, setting the bottle down and pulling her hands up toward him. He blew on them too. Violet didn’t even notice the sting this time. And then it was over. He released her hands, and as she stood there, dazed, he handed her a clean towel to dry them on. When she turned around to face him, she realized that she had been the only one affected by the moment, that his touch had been completely innocent. He was looking at her like he was waiting for her to say something, and she was suddenly aware that her mouth was still open. She finally gathered her wits enough to speak again. “Yeah, well, maybe if you hadn’t done it right in front of the cashier, we might have gotten away with it. Instead, you got both of us grounded for stealing.” He didn’t miss a beat, and he seemed unaware of her temporary lapse. “And some might say that our grounding saved us from a life of crime.” She hung the towel over the oven’s door handle. “Maybe it saved me, but the jury’s still out on you. I always thought you were kind of a bad seed.” He gave her a questioning look. “Seriously, a ‘bad seed’, Vi? When did you turn ninety and start saying things like ‘bad seed’?” She pushed him as she walked by, even though he really wasn’t in her way. He gave her a playful shove from behind and teased her, “Don’t make me trip you again.” Now more than ever, Violet hoped that this crush of hers passed soon, so she could get back to the business of being just friends. Otherwise, this was going to be a long—and painful—year.
Kimberly Derting (The Body Finder (The Body Finder, #1))
Will:"You know, when two people narrowly escape falling to their deaths, they usually have something to talk about, Even if they hadn't met before that moment, they usually have something to sayto each other afterward. But you haven't said anything to me. I've been tryingto give you some time. I've been trying to give you some space. All I want is-" Ivy:"Thank you. Thank you for risking your life. Thank you for saving me." "That's not what I wanted! Gratitude is the last thing I-" "Well, let me tell you what I want, Honesty." "When haven't I been honest? When?" "I found your note, Will. I know you blackmailed Gregory. I didn't tell the police yet, but I will." "So tell them, go ahead! It's old news to them, but if you've got the note, it's one more piece for the police files. I just don't get- Wait a minute. Do you think- You couldn't really think I did that to make money, could you?" "That's usually why people blackmail." "You think I'd betray you like that? Ivy I set up that blackmail--I got the Celentanos to help me out, and i videotaped it-so that i had something to take to the police." "Back in August when you were in the hospital, Gregory called me and told me you had tried to commit suicide. I couldn't believe it. I knew how much you missed Tristan, but I knew you were a fighter, too. I went to the train station that morning to look around and try to figure out what had gone through your head. As i was leaving I found the jacket and hat. I picked them up, but for weeks I didn't know how or even if they were connected to what had happened." "When school started I ran across some file photos of Tristan in the newspaper office. Suddenly I figured it out. I knew it wasn't like you to jump in front of a train, but it was just like you Eric and Gregory to con you across the track. I remembered how Eric had played chicken with us, and I blamed him at first. Later I realized that there was a lot more than a game going on." "Why didn't you tell me this before? You should have told me this before." "You weren't telling me things, either." "I was trying to protect you!" "What the heck do you think I was doing?...I had to distract him, give him another target, and try to get something on him at the same time. It almost worked. I gave the tape to Lieutenant Donnelly Tuesday afternoon, but Gregory had already laid his trap." "You thought I'd betray you." "Will I'm sorry. I was wrong. I really am sorry, I made a mistake. A big one. Try to understand. I was so mixed up and afraid. I thought I betrayed myself when I trusted you-and betrayed Tristan when I fell in love with you. Will!" "You fell in love with me?" "Love you, Will." "Love you, Ivy.
Elizabeth Chandler (Soulmates (Kissed by an Angel, #3))
Putting It into Practice: Neutralizing Negativity Use the techniques below anytime you’d like to lessen the effects of persistent negative thoughts. As you try each technique, pay attention to which ones work best for you and keep practicing them until they become instinctive. You may also discover some of your own that work just as well. ♦ Don’t assume your thoughts are accurate. Just because your mind comes up with something doesn’t necessarily mean it has any validity. Assume you’re missing a lot of elements, many of which could be positive. ♦ See your thoughts as graffiti on a wall or as little electrical impulses flickering around your brain. ♦ Assign a label to your negative experience: self-criticism, anger, anxiety, etc. Just naming what you are thinking and feeling can help you neutralize it. ♦ Depersonalize the experience. Rather than saying “I’m feeling ashamed,” try “There is shame being felt.” Imagine that you’re a scientist observing a phenomenon: “How interesting, there are self-critical thoughts arising.” ♦ Imagine seeing yourself from afar. Zoom out so far, you can see planet Earth hanging in space. Then zoom in to see your continent, then your country, your city, and finally the room you’re in. See your little self, electrical impulses whizzing across your brain. One little being having a particular experience at this particular moment. ♦ Imagine your mental chatter as coming from a radio; see if you can turn down the volume, or even just put the radio to the side and let it chatter away. ♦ Consider the worst-case outcome for your situation. Realize that whatever it is, you’ll survive. ♦ Think of all the previous times when you felt just like this—that you wouldn’t make it through—and yet clearly you did. We’re learning here to neutralize unhelpful thoughts. We want to avoid falling into the trap of arguing with them or trying to suppress them. This would only make matters worse. Consider this: if I ask you not to think of a white elephant—don’t picture a white elephant at all, please!—what’s the first thing your brain serves up? Right. Saying “No white elephants” leads to troops of white pachyderms marching through your mind. Steven Hayes and his colleagues studied our tendency to dwell on the forbidden by asking participants in controlled research studies to spend just a few minutes not thinking of a yellow jeep. For many people, the forbidden thought arose immediately, and with increasing frequency. For others, even if they were able to suppress the thought for a short period of time, at some point they broke down and yellow-jeep thoughts rose dramatically. Participants reported thinking about yellow jeeps with some frequency for days and sometimes weeks afterward. Because trying to suppress a self-critical thought only makes it more central to your thinking, it’s a far better strategy to simply aim to neutralize it. You’ve taken the first two steps in handling internal negativity: destigmatizing discomfort and neutralizing negativity. The third and final step will help you not just to lessen internal negativity but to actually replace it with a different internal reality.
Olivia Fox Cabane (The Charisma Myth: How Anyone Can Master the Art and Science of Personal Magnetism)
Her pretty name of Adina seemed to me to have somehow a mystic fitness to her personality. Behind a cold shyness, there seemed to lurk a tremulous promise to be franker when she knew you better. Adina is a strange child; she is fanciful without being capricious. She was stout and fresh-coloured, she laughed and talked rather loud, and generally, in galleries and temples, caused a good many stiff British necks to turn round. She had a mania for excursions, and at Frascati and Tivoli she inflicted her good-humoured ponderosity on diminutive donkeys with a relish which seemed to prove that a passion for scenery, like all our passions, is capable of making the best of us pitiless. Adina may not have the shoulders of the Venus of Milo...but I hope it will take more than a bauble like this to make her stoop. Adina espied the first violet of the year glimmering at the root of a cypress. She made haste to rise and gather it, and then wandered further, in the hope of giving it a few companions. Scrope sat and watched her as she moved slowly away, trailing her long shadow on the grass and drooping her head from side to side in her charming quest. It was not, I know, that he felt no impulse to join her; but that he was in love, for the moment, with looking at her from where he sat. Her search carried her some distance and at last she passed out of sight behind a bend in the villa wall. I don't pretend to be sure that I was particularly struck, from this time forward, with something strange in our quiet Adina. She had always seemed to me vaguely, innocently strange; it was part of her charm that in the daily noiseless movement of her life a mystic undertone seemed to murmur "You don't half know me! Perhaps we three prosaic mortals were not quite worthy to know her: yet I believe that if a practised man of the world had whispered to me, one day, over his wine, after Miss Waddington had rustled away from the table, that there was a young lady who, sooner or later, would treat her friends to a first class surprise, I should have laid my finger on his sleeve and told him with a smile that he phrased my own thought. .."That beautiful girl," I said, "seems to me agitated and preoccupied." "That beautiful girl is a puzzle. I don't know what's the matter with her; it's all very painful; she's a very strange creature. I never dreamed there was an obstacle to our happiness--to our union. She has never protested and promised; it's not her way, nor her nature; she is always humble, passive, gentle; but always extremely grateful for every sign of tenderness. Till within three or four days ago, she seemed to me more so than ever; her habitual gentleness took the form of a sort of shrinking, almost suffering, deprecation of my attentions, my petits soins, my lovers nonsense. It was as if they oppressed and mortified her--and she would have liked me to bear more lightly. I did not see directly that it was not the excess of my devotion, but my devotion itself--the very fact of my love and her engagement that pained her. When I did it was a blow in the face. I don't know what under heaven I've done! Women are fathomless creatures. And yet Adina is not capricious, in the common sense... .So these are peines d'amour?" he went on, after brooding a moment. "I didn't know how fiercely I was in love!" Scrope stood staring at her as she thrust out the crumpled note: that she meant that Adina--that Adina had left us in the night--was too large a horror for his unprepared sense...."Good-bye to everything! Think me crazy if you will. I could never explain. Only forget me and believe that I am happy, happy, happy! Adina Beati."... Love is said to be par excellence the egotistical passion; if so Adina was far gone. "I can't promise to forget you," I said; "you and my friend here deserve to be remembered!
Henry James (Adina)
Pay attention to everything the dying person says. You might want to keep pens and a spiral notebook beside the bed so that anyone can jot down notes about gestures, conversations, or anything out of the ordinary said by the dying person. Talk with one another about these comments and gestures. • Remember that there may be important messages in any communication, however vague or garbled. Not every statement made by a dying person has significance, but heed them all so as not to miss the ones that do. • Watch for key signs: a glassy-eyed look; the appearance of staring through you; distractedness or secretiveness; seemingly inappropriate smiles or gestures, such as pointing, reaching toward someone or something unseen, or waving when no one is there; efforts to pick at the covers or get out of bed for no apparent reason; agitation or distress at your inability to comprehend something the dying person has tried to say. • Respond to anything you don’t understand with gentle inquiries. “Can you tell me what’s happening?” is sometimes a helpful way to initiate this kind of conversation. You might also try saying, “You seem different today. Can you tell me why?” • Pose questions in open-ended, encouraging terms. For example, if a dying person whose mother is long dead says, “My mother’s waiting for me,” turn that comment into a question: “Mother’s waiting for you?” or “I’m so glad she’s close to you. Can you tell me about it?” • Accept and validate what the dying person tells you. If he says, “I see a beautiful place!” say, “That’s wonderful! Can you tell me more about it?” or “I’m so pleased. I can see that it makes you happy,” or “I’m so glad you’re telling me this. I really want to understand what’s happening to you. Can you tell me more?” • Don’t argue or challenge. By saying something like “You couldn’t possibly have seen Mother, she’s been dead for ten years,” you could increase the dying person’s frustration and isolation, and run the risk of putting an end to further attempts at communicating. • Remember that a dying person may employ images from life experiences like work or hobbies. A pilot may talk about getting ready to go for a flight; carry the metaphor forward: “Do you know when it leaves?” or “Is there anyone on the plane you know?” or “Is there anything I can do to help you get ready for takeoff?” • Be honest about having trouble understanding. One way is to say, “I think you’re trying to tell me something important and I’m trying very hard, but I’m just not getting it. I’ll keep on trying. Please don’t give up on me.” • Don’t push. Let the dying control the breadth and depth of the conversation—they may not be able to put their experiences into words; insisting on more talk may frustrate or overwhelm them. • Avoid instilling a sense of failure in the dying person. If the information is garbled or the delivery impossibly vague, show that you appreciate the effort by saying, “I can see that this is hard for you; I appreciate your trying to share it with me,” or “I can see you’re getting tired/angry/frustrated. Would it be easier if we talked about this later?” or “Don’t worry. We’ll keep trying and maybe it will come.” • If you don’t know what to say, don’t say anything. Sometimes the best response is simply to touch the dying person’s hand, or smile and stroke his or her forehead. Touching gives the very important message “I’m with you.” Or you could say, “That’s interesting, let me think about it.” • Remember that sometimes the one dying picks an unlikely confidant. Dying people often try to communicate important information to someone who makes them feel safe—who won’t get upset or be taken aback by such confidences. If you’re an outsider chosen for this role, share the information as gently and completely as possible with the appropriate family members or friends. They may be more familiar with innuendos in a message because they know the person well.
Maggie Callanan (Final Gifts: Understanding the Special Awareness, Needs, and Co)