Remember, Peter: you are some hybrid of friend and hired help. You have latitude, but you can't get uppity.

Michael Cunningham

Michael Cunningham

Profession: Novelist
Nationality: American

Some suggestions for you :

We always worry about the wrong things, don't we?

There is a beauty in the world, though it's harsher than we expect it to be.

I think pretty much everybody who says he needs money really and truly needs money.

As any student of literature knows, the books that last are often not the books that are most popular when they are written. Both 'Moby Dick' and 'The Great Gatsby' were complete failures, critically and commercially, when they first appeared.

There's no denying his resemblance to the Rodin bronze - the slender, effortless muscularity of youth, the extravagant nonchalance of it; that sense that beauty is in fact the natural human condition and not the rarest of mutations.

It's stores, it's the whole thing, all that shit everywhere, 'scuse me, that merchandise, all those goods, and ads screaming at you from all over the place, buy buy buy buy buy, and when somebody comes up to me with big hair and gobs of makeup on and says, 'Can I help you?', it's all I can do not to scream, 'Bitch, you can't even help yourself.

Were you relieved, maybe just a little, when they lifted you up (you weighed almost nothing by then) and shoved you into the oven? Did it seem unanticipated but right, somehow - did it strike you as satisfying, as a fate finally realized - when they slammed the door behind you?

Barrett is a bigger guy, not fat (not yet) but ursine, crimson of eye and lip; ginger-furred, possessed (he likes to think) of an enchanted sensual slyness, the prince transformed into wolf or lion, all slumbering large-pawed docility, awaiting, with avid yellow eyes, love's first kiss.

That is what we do. That is what people do. They stay alive for each other.

I suppose at heart it was the haircut that did it; that exploded the ordinary order of things and showed me the possibilities that had been there all along, hidden among the patterns in the wallpaper. In a different age, we used to take acid for more or less the same reason.

Sometimes the fabric that separates us tears just enough for love to shine through. Sometimes the tear is surprisingly small.

The lives great artists live and the books they write are two very different things.

That may have been when they took their vows: We are no longer siblings, we are mates, starship survivors, a two-man crew wandering the crags and crevices of a planet that may not be inhabited by anyone but us.

Dead, we are revealed in our true dimensions, and they are surprisingly modest.