Everyone struggles against despair, but it always wins in the end. It has to. It's the thing that lets us say goodbye.
Az életek is úgy repednek meg, ahogy a jég. Személyiségek. Egyéniségek.
I'm the final clause in a periodic sentence, and that sentence begins a long time ago, in another language, and you to read it from the beginning to get to the end, which is my arrival.
It wasn't conscious, but I guess that one book is the reaction to the other. The first is so imprisoned in a male point-of-view, and the second is a point-of-view that can go anywhere it wants.
They were moving along like that, each cupping a hold of the other. In Madeleine's face was a stupidity Mitchell had never seen before. It was the stupidity of all normal people. It was the stupidity of the beautiful and fortunate, of everybody who got what they wanted in life and so remained unremarkable.
At the time, infatuated with Nietzsche (and half asleep), Leonard didn't want to get into this argument, the truth of which wasn't that all religions were equally valid but that they were equally nonsensical.
She was always saying, 'Fuck this school,' or 'I can't wait until I get out of here.' But so did lots of kids.
After denuding the trunk, the men left to denude others, and for a time the tree stood blighted, trying to raise its stunted arms, a creature clubbed mute, only its sudden voicelessness making us realize it had been speaking all along.
The more she thought about it, the more Madeleine understood that extreme solitude didn't just describe the way she was feeling about Leonard. It explained how she'd always felt when she was in love. It explained what love was like and, just maybe, what was wrong with it.
Gathered in the folding chairs of the meeting room, they made a diverse group with the drug-addicted, a perfect democracy of collapse.
There are some books that reached through the noise of life to grab you by the collar and speak only of the truest things.
It is perhaps in reading a love story (or in writing one) that we can simultaneously partake of the ecstasy and agony of being in love without paying a crippling emotional price. I offer this book, then, as a cure for lovesickness and an antidote to adultery. Read these love stories in the safety of your single bed. Let everybody else suffer.
We knew, finally, that the girls were really women in disguise, that they understood love and even death, and that our job was merely to create the noise that seemed to fascinate them.
But that was in the days when they expected perils to come from without, and nothing made less sense by that time than a survival room buried in a house itself becoming one big coffin.
During a warm winter rain ... the basins of her collarbones collected water.
Even our parents seemed to agree more and more with the television version of things, listening to the reporters' inanities as though they could tell us the truth about our own lives.
Basically you come up with the fictional idea and you start writing that story, but then in order to write it and to make it seem real, you sometimes put your own memories in. Even if it's a character that's very different from you.
Just someone who knows, from personal experience, how attractive it can be to think you can save somebody else by loving them.
He was like a statue being chiseled away from the inside, hollowed out. As more and more of his thoughts gave him pain, Milton had increasingly avoided them. Instead he concentrated on the few that made him feel better, the bromides about everything working out. Milton, quite simply, had ceased to think things through.
Tessie and I lay in our chairs, listening to wax being violently removed. 'Oh my!' cried the large lady. 'Is nothing,' belittled Helga. 'I do it perfect.' 'Oweee!' yelped a bikini-liner. And Helga, taking an oddly femenist stance: 'See what you do for the mens? You suffer. Is not worth it.
I studied English literature in the honors program, which means that you had to take courses in various centuries. You had to start with Old English, Middle English, and work your way toward the modern. I figured if I did that it would force me to read some of the things I might not read on my own.
The girls took into their own hands decisions better left to God. They became too powerful to live among us, too self-concerned, too visionary, too blind.
It seemed like we were supposed to feel sorry for everything that ever happened, ever.
That was the ideal: to remain dutiful to a preservationist ethos while not depriving yourself of modern creature comforts.
What was interesting about being the needy one was how much in love you felt...He'd lost the ability to be an asshole. Now he was smitten, and it felt both tremendous and scary.
Maybe the best proof that the language is patriarchal is that it oversimplifies feeling.
There comes a moment, when you get lost in the woods, when the woods begin to feel like home.
Phyllida's hair was where her power resided. It was expensively set into a smooth dome, like a band shell for the presentation of that long-running act, her face.
I understood at those times what I was leaving behind: the solidarity of a shared biology. Women know what it means to have a body. They understand its difficulties and frailties, its glories and pleasures. Men think their bodies are theirs alone. They tend them in private, even in public.
I remember the first time we took off our clothes in front of each other. It was like unwinding bandages. I was as much of a man as Olivia could bear at that point. I was her starter kit.
If Mitchell was ever going to become a good Christian, he would have to stop disliking people so intensely.
In the end, the tortures tearing the Lisbon girls pointed to a simple reasoned refusal to accept the world as it was handed down to them, so full of flaws.
I had a briefcase at one point, but it was a kind of 1980s New Wave briefcase. It was made of some kind of cardboard and it had metal hinges. It was kind of faux industrial looking, and I used to carry my books in it rather than a backpack. I didn't want to have normal student accoutrements.
Normality wasn't normal. It couldn't be. If normality were normal, everybody could leave it alone. They could sit back and let normality manifest itself.
Olive trees are intimate creatures, eloquent in their twistedness. It's easy to understand why the ancients believed human spirits could be trapped inside them.
I would handle the deep intellectual matters, like vibrators; she would handle the social sphere.
Only the Lisbon house remained dark, a tunnel, an emptiness, past our smoke and flames.
Parents are supposed to pass down physical traits to their children, but it's my belief that all sorts of other things get passed down, too: motifs, scenarios, even fates.
They lined you up in kindergarten, alphabetically. On fourth-grade field trips you took your partner's hand to push past the musk ox or the steam turbine. School was a perpetual lineup, ending in this final one.
Yes, you need a passport to prove to the world that you exist. The people at passport control, they cannot look at you and see you are a person. No! They have to look at a little photograph of you. Then they believe you exist.
That was when I realized a shocking thing. I couldn't become a man without becoming The Man. Even if I didn't want to.
We realized that the version of the world they rendered for us was not the world they really believed in...