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Bloody Demise of a Fallen Dream
08 March 2011 @ 07:34 pm
"She looked at me with soulful eyes that screamed, I'll never be all right again."
- "Don't Call Them Ghosts: The Spirit Children Of Fontaine Manse: A True Story." Kathleen McConnell

I am asked to hide
my viewpoint
from them
for fear of their

Charles Bukowski, "Be Kind"

Oh to free the soul of things.Their incorporeal double.Your other face,the one you don’t see,before you look out,beyond your life:a redoubling born of an amorous gaze— yes, I love you that far.

Alix’s Journal by Alix Cleo Roubaud

I've hidden my distrust of my mother and am doing my best to trust her and love her. But it might not work out. Because I love somebody I don't trust anymore. I've lost all faith in myself. I bet it's like this when parents abuse their children. Kids lose their trust in the parents they love, but still accept them, so they end up not trusting themselves anymore.
Real World, Natsuo Kirino

"A feeling of sadness and longing,
That is not akin to pain,
And resembles sorrow only
As the mist resembles the rain."
- Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, from The Day Is Done

“I wonder why I don’t go to bed and go to sleep. But then it would be tomorrow, so I decide that no matter how tired, no matter how incoherent I am, I can skip one hour more of sleep and live.”
— The Unabridged Journals of Sylvia Plath

It doesn't interest me what you do for a living.
I want to know what you ache for
and if you dare to dream of meeting your heart's longing.

It doesn't interest me how old you are.
I want to know if you will risk looking like a fool
for love
for your dream
for the adventure of being alive.

It doesn't interest me what planets are squaring your moon...
I want to know if you have touched the center of your own sorrow
if you have been opened by life's betrayals
or have become shriveled and close
from fear of further pain.

I want to know if you can sit with pain
mine or your own
without moving to hide it
or fade it
or fix it.

I want to know if you can be with joy
mine or your own
if you can dance with wildness
and let the ecstasy fill you to the tips of your fingers and toes
without cautioning us
to be careful
to be realistic
to remember the limitations of being human.

It doesn't interest me if the story you are telling me is true.
I want to know if you can
disappoint another
to be true to yourself.
If you can bear the accusation of the betrayal
and not betray your own soul.
If you can be faithless
and therefore trustworthy.

I want to know if you can see Beauty
even when it is not pretty
every day.
And if you can source your own life
from its presence.

I want to know if you can live with failure
yours and mine
and still stand at the edge of the lake
and shout to the silver of the full moon,

It doesn't interest me
to know where you live or how much money you have.
I want to know if you can get up
after the night of grief and despair
weary and bruised to the bone
and do what needs to be done.

It doesn't interest me who you know
or how you came to be here.
I want to know if you will stand
in the center of the fire
with me
and not shrink back.

It doesn't interest me where or what or with whom
you have studied.
I want to know what sustains you
from the inside
when all else falls away.

I want to know if you can be alone
with yourself
and if you truly like the company you keep
in the empty moments.
-Oriah - The invitation

Death is nothing at all. I have only slipped away into the next room. I am I and you are you. Whatever we were to each other, that we still are. Call me by my old familiar name. Speak to me in the easy way which you always used. Put no difference in your tone. Wear no forced air of solemnity or sorrow. Laugh as we always laughed at the little jokes we enjoyed together. Play, smile, think of me, pray for me. Let my name be ever the household word that it always was. Let it be spoken without affect, without the trace of a shadow on it. Life means all that it ever meant. It is the same that it ever was. There is absolutely unbroken continuity. Why should I be out of mind because I am out of sight? I am waiting for you, for an interval, somewhere very near, just around the corner. All is well.
-Death is Nothing at All - Henry Scott Holland

The pain that fills my body when I hit it is not my enemy. It is the call to greatness. It's my body trying to pull me higher.
People usually go so far. Pain keeps them back. There is pain on many different levels. To change is painful. To go after something that's out of your reach is painful. Pain doesn't have to be a deterrent. Pain can inspire you to reach past yourself.
-Henry Rollins, Do I Come Here Often?

“Long ago,” he said, “long ago, there was something in me, but now that thing is gone. Now that thing is gone, that thing is gone. I cannot cry. I cannot care. That thing will come back no more.”
Winter Dreams -- F. Scott Fitzgerald

I don't know if you've ever felt like that. That you wanted to sleep for a thousand years. Or just not exist. Or just not be aware that you do exist. Or something like that. I think wanting that is very morbid, but I want it when I get like this. That's why I'm trying not to think. I just want it all to stop spinning. If this gets any worse, I might have to go back to the doctor. It's getting that bad again.
Love always,
-The perks of being a wallflower
By: Stephen Chbosky

"And that perhaps he was wrong when he supposed her the weaker of them and himself the stronger. Actually, who is the stronger one? When they were both out on the terrain of love, perhaps it was really he. But with the terrain of love gone from under their feet, she is the strong one, and he is the weak."
-Identity - Milan Kundera

"It will help release your worries and clear your mind. Ease all the tension from up there." She touched my forehead gently with her forefinger. "Imagine, you can tell those pages things you don't want to tell anybody else and it will never tell a soul. The best friend a girl could have." She winked.
-The book of Tomorrow by Cecelia Ahern

I did not like to be touched, but it was a strange dislike. I did not like to be touched because I craved it too much. I wanted to be held very tight so I could not break. Even now, when people lean down to touch me, or hug me, or put a hand on my shoulder, I hold my breath. I turn my face. I want to cry.
Wasted : A Memoir of Anorexia and Bulimia
- Marya Hornbacher

"The moment you stop to think about whether you love someone, you’ve already stopped loving that person forever."
— The Shadow of the Wind, Carlos Ruiz Zafon

"But he adored me and I knew it. This was a new, euphoric sensation. My first taste of a drug. I wanted more."
-"A Wolf At The Table" Augusten Burroughs

So, no. I've never married and never will. Not because I couldn't, but because I'm too romantic for marriage. Marriage has failed me, you could say. Not a man exists who hasn't dosappointed me, whom I could trust to love the way I've loved. It's because I believe too much in marriage that I don't. Better to not marry than live a lie.
-Never Marry a Mexican, Sandra Cisneros

If you expect to find people who will understand you, you will grow murderous with disappointment. The best you’ll ever do is to understand yourself, know what it is that you want, and not let the cattle stand in your way.
- White Oleander, 131. Janet Fitch.

"I looked at my right hand, the hand with which I painted. There was power in that hand. Power to create and destroy. Power to bring pleasure and pain. Power to amuse and horrify. There was in that hand the demonic and the divine at one and the same time. The demonic and the divine were two aspects of the same force. Creation was demonic and divine. Creativity was demonic and divine. I was demonic and divine."
“Art is whether or not there is a scream in him wanting to get out in a special way.”
- My Name is Asher Lev, Chaim Potok

It is really hard to be lonely very long in a word of words. Even if you don't have friends somewhere, you still have language, and it will find you and wrap its little syllables around you and suddenly there will be a story to live in.
Naomi Shihab Nye, "I'll Ask You Three Times, Are You OK?"

Sorrow is Knowledge: they who know the most
Must mourn the deepest o'er the fatal truth,
The Tree of Knowledge is not that of Life.
-Lord Byron

"But now I have forgiven the world for the love of you."
- Alexandre Dumas, The Count of Monte Cristo

"In ages past, the beast in men was hidden in the dark, disavowed. The transperancy of modern history makes that impossible. We've seen ourselves in the concentration camps,the gulags, the jungles, the killing fields, we've read ourselves in the annals of True Crime. Technology turned up the lights and now there's no getting away from the fact: the beast is redundant. Its's been us all along."
-The Last Werewolf - Glen Duncan

"Carnivore incarnate, only immaculate flesh appeases him. "
- Angela Carter, The Company of Wolves

"I was crying for the hunt, But I was hunting for you."
- Angela Carter, The Company of Wolves

"That long-drawn, wavering howl has, for all its fearful resonance, some inherent sadness in it, as if the beasts would love to be less beastly if only they knew how and never cease to mourn their own condition. There is a vast melancholy in the canticles of the wolves, melancholy infinite as the forest, endless as these long nights of winter and yet that ghastly sadness, that mourning for their own, irremediable appetites, can never move the heart for not one phrase in it hints at the possibility of redemption; grace could not come to the wolf from its own despair, only through some external mediator, so that, sometimes, the beast will look as if he half welcomes the knife that dispatches him."
- Angela Carter, The Company Of Wolves

“Never forget what you are, for surely the world will not. Make it your strength. Then it can never be your weakness. Armor yourself in it, and it will never be used to hurt you.”
-A Game of Thrones, George R.R. Martin

"You’ll get over it…” It’s the clichés that cause the trouble. To lose someone you love is to alter your life for ever. You don’t get over it because ‘it” is the person you loved. The pain stops, there are new people, but the gap never loses. How could it? The particularness of someone who mattered enough to grieve over is not made anodyne by death. This hole in my heart is in the shape of you and no-one else can fit it. Why would I want them to?
-Jeanette Winterson (Written on the Body)

"I held down so much sorrow I couldn’t feel anything anymore. The sadness and anger corroded all my feelings."

"I grew up in a house insulated with books. They covered every wall; and as I was timid, they were my gentlest friends. From their pages I took dreams of magical island, safely moated and quiet under a humming sun."
- Both from "In My Skin" by Kate Holden

"What do people do with all that time? I mean, people other than me. They must do something. All those nights and weekends for years and years. I can't even imagine what I'm going to do with all that time. Don't people get awfully tired after a while? I mean, won't I get awfully tired? And is there something that makes it okay in the end? Is there something that makes it worth it, being so tired, going through all this?"
-The myth of sanity - Martha Stout, PH.D

"It's so hard, because so much of the time when I'm here, what you're seeing is not what I'm seeing. I feel like such an imposter.I'm out in my ocean, and you don't know that. And I can't tell you what's going on. Sometimes I'd really like to tell you, but I can't. I'm gone."
-The myth of sanity,
Martha Stout, PH.D

I’m in love with you, and I’m not in the business of denying myself the simple pleasure of saying true things. I’m in love with you, and I know that love is just a shout into the void, and that oblivion is inevitable, and that we’re all doomed and that there will come a day when all our labor has been returned to dust, and I know the sun will swallow the only earth we’ll ever have, and I’m in love with you.
-The Fault in Our Stars by John Green

When you are young, you think it's going to be solved by love. But it never is. Being close -- as close as you can get -- to another person only makes clear that impassable distance between you.
-The history of love, Nicole Krauss

“Sometimes I see something so moving I know I’m not supposed to linger. See it and leave. If you stay too long, you wear out the wordless shock. Love it and trust it and leave.”

“We were restless and grasping, we were a fling that had run intermittently for two years only because we lived in different cities, and we were religious in our attachment to risk, and she was the last thing I needed in this world.”

I long for the days of disorder. I want them back, the days when I was alive on the earth, rippling in the quick of my skin, heedless and real. I was dumb-muscled and angry and real. This is what I long for, the breach of peace, the days of disarray when I walked real streets and did things slap-bang and felt angry and ready all the time, a danger to others and a distant mystery to myself.”
- Don DeLillo, Underworld

~...Suffering is one very long moment. We cannot divide it by seasons. We can only record its moods, and chronicle their return. With us time itself does not progress. It revolves. It seems to circle round one centre of pain.
-Oscar Wilde- De Profundis

Don't ever think I fell for you, or fell over you. I didn't fall in love, I rose in it."
- Jazz, Toni Morrison

"You may think the past has something to tell you. You may think that you should listen, should strain to make out its whispers, should bend over backward, stoop down low to hear its voice breathed up from the ground, from the dead places. You may think there's something in it for you, something to understand or make sense of. But I know the truth: I know from the nights of Coldness. I know the pa...st will drag you backward and down, have you snatching at whispers of wind and the gibberish of trees rubbing together, trying to decipher some code, trying to piece together what was broken. It's hopeless. The past is nothing but a weight. It will build inside of you like a stone. Take it from me: If you hear the past speaking to you, feel it tugging at your back and running its fingers up your spine, the best thing to do---the only thing---is run."
-Delirium By Lauren Oliver

"I know that life isn't life if you just float through it. I know that the whole point---the only point---is to find the things that matter, and hold on to them, and fight for them, and refuse to let them go."
-Delirium By Lauren Oliver

“The water is an enormous mirror, tipped with and pink and gold from the sky. In that single, blazing moment as I came around the bend, the sun – curved over the dip of the horizon like a solid gold archway – lets out its final winking rays of light, shattering the darkness of the water, turning everything white for a fraction of a second, and then falls away, sinking, dragging the pink and the red and the purple out of the sky with it, all the colour bleeding away instantly and leaving only dark."
-Delirium By Lauren Oliver

Books are never harmless...they either strengthen us or they weaken us in our faith. Some of them do this even as they entertain us, others as they teach us. In an invisible way their teaching penetrates into our hearts and souls, to continue its work inside, and we inhale the spirit of these books as healing or poisonous vapors. They can bring the greatest benefits and the greatest ruin, for from their ideas that they spread come the deeds of the future.
― Peter Prange, The Philosopher's Kiss

There is an alchemy in sorrow. It can be transmuted into wisdom, which, if it does not bring joy, can yet bring happiness.
-Pearl S. Buck

"So much of life hurt, so much of it had been lost. The only way I knew how to survive was to shut everything off, or at least try to. To bury everything I felt down deep inside me, hiding the happiness along with the sadness. But it was killing me. I was exhausted from fighting it, from trying to keep everything inside me inside. And as much as I’d tried to do this all on my own, the one thing I knew for sure was that I couldn't. I needed people."
-"Hollowmen" by Amanda Hocking

" You are not a body, but a heart, a mind, a soul. These are yours and no one can take them from you."
-The Kiss by Kathryn Harrison

“All I wanted then was for everything to go on as before, so that I could stay deeply asleep, and be no more than a hole in space, not here or anywhere at all, for as long as possible, preferably forever.”
— Julia and the Bazooka, Anna Kavan

Either the heart would break, or cease to care. Best cease to care.
-DH Lawrence's "Women in Love"

"I can't go back into the past and change it, but I have noticed that the future changes the past. What I call the past is my memory of it and my memory is conditioned by who I am now. Who I will be. The only way for me to handle what is happening is to move myself forward into someone who has handled it."
-Gut Symmetries, Jeanette Winterson

You must remember it. That is the purpose of stories, that no matter where we walk in the world, we walk twice: once in the warm sunshine, and once in the silvery light of every tale we have ever heard, seeing each thing as it is, and also as it was.
-The Habitation of the Blessed, by Catherynne M. Valente

Come here
and take off your clothes
and with them
every single worry
you have ever carried.
My fingertips on your back
will be the very last thing
you will feel
before sleeping
and the sound of my smile
will be the alarm clock
to your morning ears.
Come here
and take off your clothes
and with them
the weight of every yesterday
that snuck atop your shoulders
and declared them home.
My whispers will be the soundtrack
to your secret dreams
and my hand
the anchor to the life
you will open your eyes to.
Come here
and take off your clothes.
-Tyler Knott Gregson

Suicide is just a moment. This is how she described it to me. For just a moment, it doesn’t matter that you’ve got people who love you and the sun is shining and there’s a movie coming out this weekend that you’ve been dying to see. It hits you all of a sudden that nothing is ever going to be okay, ever, and you kind of dare yourself. You pick up a knife and press it gently to your skin, you look out a nineteenth-story window and you think, I could just do it. I could just do it. And most of the time, you look at the height and you get scared, or you think about the poor people on the sidewalk below - what if there are kids coming home from school and they have to spend the rest of their lives trying to forget this terrible thing you’re going to make them see? And the moment’s over. You think about how sad it would’ve been if you never got to see that movie, and you look at your dog and wonder who would’ve taken care of her if you had gone. And you go back to normal. But you keep it there in your mind. Even if you never take yourself up on it, it gives you a kind of comfort to know that the day is yours to choose. You tuck it away in your brain like sour candy tucked in your cheek, and the puckering memory it leaves behind, the rough pleasure of running your tongue over its strange terrain, is exactly the same. The day was hers to choose, and perhaps in that treetop moment when she looked down and saw the yard, the world, her life, spread out below her, perhaps she chose to plunge toward it headlong. Perhaps she saw before her a lifetime of walking on the ruined earth and chose instead a single moment in the air.
- Carolyn Parkhurst, The Dogs of Babel

"I held down so much sorrow I couldn’t feel anything anymore. The sadness and anger corroded all my feelings."

"I grew up in a house insulated with books. They covered every wall; and as I was timid, they were my gentlest friends. From their pages I took dreams of magical island, safely moated and quiet under a humming sun."
- Both from "In My Skin" by Kate Holden

...Certain people are like that, I guess. They're together no matter where they are. They just belong to each other."
- Maria de los Santos, Belong to Me

"Every last souvenir of the love we had, the prizes and the debris of this relationship, like the glitter in the gutter when the parade has passed."
- "Why We Broke Up" by Daniel Handler

"It's so hard, because so much of the time when I'm here, what you're seeing is not what I'm seeing. I feel like such an imposter.I'm out in my ocean, and you don't know that. And I can't tell you what's going on. Sometimes I'd really like to tell you, but I can't. I'm gone."
-The myth of sanity, Martha Stout, PH.D

"You know how we talk about my tendency to be dissociative? Well do you think I dissociate from my body too? Because if that's what I'm doing, then it's the illusion from hell. I mean, if it's supposed to save me, it's not working. In fact, it's going to kill me one day. And even if it doesn't kill me, what's the use of living if I can't feel anything? Why should I be alive when I lose big parts of my life? I mean, really, how can you care about anything if you can't even know the truth about yourself? If you keep losing yourself?"
-The myth of sanity
Martha Stout, PH.D

"Love does not traffic in a marketplace, nor use a huckster's scales. Its joy, like the joy of the intellect, is to feel itself alive. The aim of Love is to love: no more, and no less. You were my enemy: such an enemy as no man ever had. I had given you all my life, and to gratify the lowest and most contemptible of all human passions, hatred and vanity and greed, you had thrown it away. In less than three years you had entirely ruined me in every point of view. For my own sake there was nothing for me to do but to love you."
- Oscar Wilde, De Profundis

I’m in love with you, and I’m not in the business of denying myself the simple pleasure of saying true things. I’m in love with you, and I know that love is just a shout into the void, and that oblivion is inevitable, and that we’re all doomed and that there will come a day when all our labor has been returned to dust, and I know the sun will swallow the only earth we’ll ever have, and I’m in love with you.
-The Fault in Our Stars by John Green

“Sometimes I see something so moving I know I’m not supposed to linger. See it and leave. If you stay too long, you wear out the wordless shock. Love it and trust it and leave.”

“We were restless and grasping, we were a fling that had run intermittently for two years only because we lived in different cities, and we were religious in our attachment to risk, and she was the last thing I needed in this world.”

I long for the days of disorder. I want them back, the days when I was alive on the earth, rippling in the quick of my skin, heedless and real. I was dumb-muscled and angry and real. This is what I long for, the breach of peace, the days of disarray when I walked real streets and did things slap-bang and felt angry and ready all the time, a danger to others and a distant mystery to myself.”
- Don DeLillo, Underworld

As I walked home, there was the familiar crush of isolation, that bodily loneliness that swept through me every winter. It was as if I'd been injected with something cold and vicious. I could feel it spreading through me, falling heavy in the center of my chest, pooling there. It was bitter and it was devastating and it frightened me.
-From "You Deserve Nothing" by Alexander Maksik

“Instead, what I was beginning to understand was that however things unfolded from here on, whatever the next chapter was, my life could never be the sum of one circumstance. It would be determined, as it had always been, by my willingness to put one foot in front of the other, moving forward, come what may.”

“In the years ahead of me, I learned that the world is actually filled with people ready to tell you how likely something is, and what it means to be realistic. But what I have also learned is that no one, no one truly knows what is possible until they go and do it.”

“I said to myself: what if I woke up, and every single day I did everything within my ability during that day to change my life. What could happen in just a month? A year?”

She never utters a sound even when she’s crying, and that makes me a little sad. Doesn’t seem right. When you cry, people should hear you. The world should stop.
- Going Bovine by Libba Bray

“A few times in my life I’ve had moments of absolute clarity. When for a few brief seconds the silence drowns out the noise and I can feel rather than think, and things seem so sharp and the world seems so fresh. It’s as though it had all just come into existence.
I can never make these moments last. I cling to them, but like everything, they fade. I have lived my life on these moments. They pull me back to the present, and I realize that everything is exactly the way it was meant to be.”
- Christopher Isherwood, A Single Man

“Be still when you have nothing to say; when genuine passion moves you, say what you’ve got to say, and say it hot.”
- Lady Chatterley's Lover

“I thought at the time that I couldn't be horrified anymore, or wounded. I suppose that's a common conceit, that you've already been so damaged that damage itself, in its totality, makes you safe.”
― Lionel Shriver, We Need to Talk About Kevin

“Children live in the same world we do. To kid ourselves that we can shelter them from it isn't just naive it's a vanity.”
― Lionel Shriver, We Need to Talk About Kevin

“...You can only subject people who have a conscience to anguish . You can only punish people who have hopes to frustrate or attachments to sever; who worry what you think of them. You can really only punish people who are already a little bit good.”
― Lionel Shriver, We Need to Talk About Kevin

♥ You don’t know what goes on in anyone’s life but your own. And when you mess with one part of a person’s life, you’re not messing with just that part. Unfortunately, you can’t be that precise and selective. When you mess with one part of a person’s life, you’re messing with their entire life.
Everything... affects everything.
~~Th1rteen R3asons by Jay Asher

You think it will never happen to you, that it cannot happen to you, that you are the only person in the world to whom none of these things will ever happen, and then, one by one, they all begin to happen to you, in the same way they happen to everyone else.
-Paul Auster, Winter Journal

The people in this world who scorn me
no doubt have a special wisdom,
so I don't write for them:
instead I write with the thought
that since the world is wide and time is endless,
one day someone will be born
whose nature is the same as mine.
- Bhavabhūtī (translated by Vinay Dharwadker)
Current Mood: boredbored
Bloody Demise of a Fallen Dream
26 September 2008 @ 03:08 pm
"At the same time, you have to find the right distance between people. Too close, and they overwhelm you, too far and they abandon you. How to hold them in the right relation?"
-Hanif Kureishi, Intimacy

This phantasm
of falling petals vanishes into
moon and flowers

Such nights are possible, and we survive them.
It is a matter of sleeping next to the adored body you no longer have the right or inclination to love. Whether you are the one who casts off, or the castoff yourself; whether your arms are the recoilers, or the ones that reach wantingly, then pull back, remembering they are no longer wanted.
-Pages For You by Sylvia Brownrigg

"I hadn't understood how days could be both long and short at the same time: long to live through, maybe, but so drawn out that they ended up flowing into one another. They lost their names. Only 'yesterday' and 'tomorrow' still had any meaning for me."
-The Stranger, Albert Camus

I went off with fists in my torn
My coat was completely
I followed you, Muse,
where you led me,
Dreamed of loves --
ah -- so fine and so rare.
-Rimbaud,Ma Boheme

"She complained that we had taught her to believe in her dreams...but that when she tried to tell us what her dreams were, we all laughed at her."
-The Search for Belle Prater by Ruth White

"You still cry too easily, but without your tears, at least, everything would burn. You are Spring in your jeans, in the laughing leaves. I think pearls melted over your bones."
-Wasteland by Francesca Lia Block

Why should I blame her that she filled my days
With misery, or that she would of late
Have taught to ignorant men most violent ways,
Or hurled the little streets upon the great,
Had they but courage equal to desire?
What could have made her peaceful with a mind
That nobleness made simple as a fire,
With beauty like a tightened bow, a kind
That is not natural in an age like this,
Being high and solitary and most stern?
Why, what could she have done, being what she is?
Was there another Troy for her to burn?
-"No Second Troy," by W.B. Yeats

I hurl my heart to halt his pace,
To quench his thirst i squander bood;
He eats, and still his need seeks food,
Compels a total sacrifice.
His voice waylays me, spells a trance,
The gutted forest falls to ash
Appaled by secret want, i rush
From such assault of radience.
Entering the tower of my fears,
I shut the doors on that dark guilt,
I bolt the door, each door i bolt.
Blood quickens, gonging in my ears:
The panther's tread is on the stairs,
Coming up and up the stairs.
-Pursuit, by Sylvia Plath

‘You can’t go back,’ she told him bluntly. Her voice was neither kind nor unkind. ‘That part of your life is over. Set it aside as something you have finished. Complete or no, it is done with you. No being gets to decide what his life is “supposed to be”.’ She lifted her eyes and her gaze stabbed at him. ‘Be a man. Discover where you are now, and go on from there, making the best of things. Accept your life, and you might survive it. If you hold back from it, insisting this is not your life, not where you are meant to be, life will pass you by. You may not die from such foolishness, but you might as well be dead for all the good your life will do you or anyone else.’
-Robin Hobb, The Mad Ship: Book Two, The Liveship Trader

“…when you let go and follow your fate instead of trying to twist your life around and master it, a man finds that happiness follows him.” Fool’s Fate, Robin Hobb, The Tawny Man Trilogy, Book Three

"But I think there comes a point in love, a unique moment which later on the soul seeks in vain to surpass, and that the effort to revive such happiness depletes it; that nothing thwarts happiness so much as the memory of happiness."
-"The Immoralist" by Andre Gide

Who, if I screamed out, would hear me among the hierarchies
of angels? And if one suddenly did take
me to his heart: I would perish from his
stronger existence. For beauty is nothing
but the onset of terror we're still just able to bear,
and we admire it because it calmly disdains
to destroy us. Every angel is terrifying.
-The Duino Elegies by Rainer Maria Rilke

Ultimately, we do what we love to do. I like to think that I do things for the right reasons, but I don’t, I do things because I do or don’t love them. Because of sin, because I am self-addicted, living in the wreckage of the fall, my body, my heart, and my affections are prone to love things that kill me.
-from Blue Like Jazz, by Donald Miller

Yes, there is no Fate for us
Only those who are swallowed by
Ignorance and fear and miss a step
Fall into the rapid river called Fate
We are all
dead since we are born
The end is
there before anything starts
If to live is
to continue learning
The end is when we learn the very last thing
To finally discover the end
and learning about it completely
is what death is
We are not allowed to learn about something
Those who cannot transcend death,
shouldn't learn of anything
-BLEACH manga translations

Adolescents do get very angry with their parents, and acknowledging this anger is part of acknowledging them. If the anger is not acknowledged then its expression is increased. The parent seems super-strong. The adolescent tries to become the super-attacker.
-Terri Apter

"But truth seemed to be changing. I had thought that
truth was always simple and clear. A thing was true or
it was a lie. But now, as time seemed simultaneously to
stand still and rush by me with the startling speed
of a meteor, I knew truth was as complicated as
time. "
-Camilla by Madeleine L'Engle

"The mind has a thousand eyes
And the heart but one:
Yet the light of a whole life dies
When love is done."
-The Night Has a Thousand Eyes, Francis William Bourdillon

"Tuck your chin in; you're going to get hurt, so expect it and be ready; you may as well see it coming."
-Rhapsody by Elizabeth Haydon

It hurts when we love somebody, because loving is a painful thing, that is it’s nature. Today, even though we are not sure that the pain will pass, it has to be said that our loving is hurting us.
-Now That You’re Back, A.L. Kennedy

What is kinder--to believe the best of people and burden them with a nobility beyond their endurance--or to see them as they are,and accept it because it makes them comfortable?
-Ayn Rand: The Fountainhead

Anything may be betrayed, anyone may be forgiven. But not those who lack the courage of their own greatness.
-Ayn Rand: The Fountainhead

"Sometimes a person gets tired of being fixed all the time. Where every little problem becomes a project. Where every little shortcoming needs to be addressed. They eventually have to share with someone."
-Mary E. Pearson The Adoration of Jenna Fox

You want to break something else in me! Is that why you’re here?
-A Separate Peace by John Knowles

I know what it's like to want to die. How it hurts to smile. How you try to fit in but you can't. How you hurt yourself on the outside to try to kill the thing on the inside.
-Girl, Interrupted by Susanna Kaysen

It would hurt. Even for my kind, pain still hurts. If you move and act in the material world, then the material world acts on you. Pain hurts, just as greed intoxicates and lust burns. We may not die easy and we sure as hell don't die well, but we can die. If we're still loved and remembered, something else a whole lot like us comes along and takes our place and the whole damn thing starts all over again. And if we're forgotten, we're done.
-American Gods, Neil Gaiman

Dare I say I miss him? I do. I miss him. I still see him in my dreams. They are nightmares mostly, but nightmares tinged with love.
-Yann Martel- Life of Pi

I still cannot understand how he could abandon me so unceremoniously, without any sort of goodbye, without looking back even once. That pain is like an axe that chops at my heart.
-Yann Martel- Life of Pi

Can we only love
Something created in our own imaginations?
Are we all in fact unloving and unlovable?
Then one is alone, and if one is alone
Then lover and beloved are equally unreal
And the dreamer is no more real than his dreams.
-T.S. Eliot~ The Cocktail Party

I think I've heard enough.
I don't think so. There's so much more, it goes on and on, see? She gripped his wrist hard and he winced. And what do you know about me? You want a test, here's a test: tell me what the hell you know about me.
I don't know.
She threw his hand down. You don't know. You don't know! She shouted, her voice breaking. And the most awful part of it is that I still love you. I've lost you and yet you're still here. To taunt me. Can you understand? Do you have any empathy at all for what it's like?
- Man Walks Into A Room by Nicole Krauss

"So, I guess we are who we are for a lot of reasons. And maybe we'll never know most of them. But even if we don't have the power to choose where we come from, we can still choose where we go from there. We can still do things. And we can try to feel okay about them."
-The Perks of Being a Wallflower, Stephen Chbosky

I'm not sentimental - I'm as romantic as you are. The idea, you know, is that the sentimental person thinks things will last - the romantic person has a desperate confidence that they won't.
- F. Scott Fitzgerald, This Side of Paradise

'For though she flee, soon she'll be chasing;
though she refuse gifts, she'll be giving;
though she love not, she'll love despite herself'

I know where Sadness lives
Among roses and the clouds
In memory-haunted houses
With long sun-stained walls
I know the paths it walks at sunset and dawn
The twilights between worlds
The cliffs from where it watches
The tide go out and return
I know where it lies down to sleep
And where its coat is kept
On an empty peg in the wardrobe
Of Always Never Yet
-Stefan Nesbit, I Know Where Sadness Lives

"Don't ask for guarantees. And don't look to be saved in any one thing, person, machine, or library. Do your own bit of saving, and if you drown, at least die knowing you were headed for shore."
-Fahrenheit 451 by Ray Bradbury

What's madness but nobility of soul
At odds with circumstance? The day's on fire!
I know the purity of pure despair,
My shadow pinned against a sweating wall,
That place among the rocks--is it a cave,
Or winding path? The edge is what I have.
-Theodore Roethke, In A Dark Time

"Jump off the cliff and build your wings on the way down."
- Ray Bradbury

“Last night, I thought that if I cut deep enough, I might be able to see all the way down past blood and bone and marrow to the place where it aches all the time.”
-Second Glance, Jodi Picoult

"How depressing would it be to know you're part of the reason things aren't perfect? To look in on the best of all possible worlds and notice you're not there."
-Ryan North, Dinosaur Comics

"I saw her, in the fire, but now. I hear her in music, in the wind, in the dead stillness of the night," returned the haunted man.
-Charles Dickens, The Haunted Man

"Perhaps it is true that we do not really exist until there is someone there to see us existing, we cannot properly speak until there is someone there who can understand what we are saying, in essence, we are not wholly alive until we are loved."
-Alain De Button, Essays In Love

I know nothing more shattering than to love with all your heart, than not to be able however hard you try to break yourself of it, someone who you know is worthless.
-"A Casual Affair", W. Somerset Maugham

A love story is not about those who lose their heart but about those who find that sullen inhabitant who, when it is stumbled upon, means the body can fool no one, can fool nothing--not the wisdom of sleep or the habit of social graces. It is a consuming of oneself and the past.
-The English Patient, Michael Ondaatje

"I think I should have no other mortal wants, if I could always have plenty of music. It seems to infuse strength into my brain. Life seems to go on without effort, when I am filled with music."
-George Eliot, The Mill on the Floss

Love demands expression. It will not stay still, stay silent, be good, be modest, be seen and not heard, no. It will break out in tongues of praise, the high note that smashes the glass and spills the liquid. It is no conservationist love. It is a big game hunter and you are the game. A curse on this game.
-Written On The Body, by Jeanette Winterson

"I opened myself to you only to be skinned alive.
The more vulnerable I became,
the faster and more deft your knife.
Knowing what was happening,
still I stayed
and let you carve more.
That's how much I loved you.
That's how much.
-Rabih Alameddine: I, the Divine

"i wanna explain how exhausted i am,
even in my dreams,
how i wake up tired,
how i'm being drowned by some kind of black wave.
But i can't write
and he doesn't wanna know about it anyway."
-Elizabeth Wurtzel [from book: Prozac Nation]

"a child's emotion
recollected in melancholy"
- Sandy Jeffs [Book: Blood Relations]

"The weight of the world is love.
Under the burden of solitude,
under the burden of dissatisfaction."
-Allen Ginsberg [from poem: Song]

"In deep sadness there is no place for sentimentality. "
-William Burroughs

"but am I complaining
when for months
you rubbed salt in my eyes
with a sordid taste
in your mouth
and a look of contempt
to tell me
one day we could be
a skeletal form
pieced together
by more than shallow phone calls
and bad grammar
as you explain
like they had never
crossed my mind"
-the atlantic from poem: steep

"But when the strong were too weak to hurt the weak, the weak had to be strong enough to leave"
-the unbearable lightness of being

"Tomas kept trying to convince her that love and lovemaking were two different things. She refused to understand. Now she was surrounded by men she did not care for in the slightest. What would making love with them be like? She yearned to try it, if only in the form of the no-guarantee promise called flirting.
Let there be no mistake: Tereza did not wish to take revenge on Tomas; she merely wished to find a way out of the maze. She knew that she had become a burden to him; she took things too seriously, turning everything into a tragedy, and failed to grasp the lightness and amusing insignificance of physical love."
-the unbearable lightness of being

It's not Kartik's longing that hurts. It's my own. It's knowing that I'll never have what she has--a beauty so powerful it brings things to you. I fear I will always have to chase the things I want. I'll always have to wonder whether I'm truly wanted or whether I've just been settled for.
-Libba Bray, A Great and Terrible Beauty

"Cedy, I may be wrong, but the way I see it, there's three parts to love. Three ways of doing it - mind, body and soul. When you get all the three happening at once, that's it. That's the real thing."
-Martine Murray, The Slightly True Story of Cedar B. Hartley

Hatred is love that's been injured. If you have hatred in your heart it means you have love in it also.
-The Women of Lockerbie by Deborah Brevoort

Before, I thought we could write about life only when we had recovered from our wounds; when we were able to touch old sores with a pen and not revive the pain; when we could look back free from nostalgia, madness, and a sense of grievance.
But is this really possible? We are never completely cut off from our memory. Recollections provides the inspiration for writing, the stimulus for painting, and for some, the motivation even for death.
-"Memory in the Flesh" by Ahlam Mosteghanemi

And each night in bed I thought of her as the moon came through my window. I could have lowered my shade to make it darker and easier to sleep, but I never did. In that moonlit hour, I acquired a sense of the otherness of things. I liked the feeling the moonlight gave me, as if it wasn't the opposite of day, but its underside, its private side, when the fabulous purred on my snow-white sheet like some dark cat come in from the desert.
-Stargirl by Jerry Spinelli

I used to be a hopeless romantic. I am still a hopeless romantic. I used to believe that love was the highest value. I still believe that love is the highest value. I don't expect to be happy. I don't imagine that I will find love, whatever that means, or that if I do find it, it will make me happy. I don't think of love as the answer or the solution. I think of love as a force of nature - as strong as the sun, as necessary, as impersonal, as gigantic, as impossible, as scorching as it is warming, as drought-making as it is live-giving. And when it burns out, the planet dies.
My little orbit of life circles love. I daren't get any closer. I'm not a mystic seeking final communion. I don't go out without SPF 15. I protect myself.
But today, when the sun is everywhere, and everything solid is nothing but its own shadow, I know that the real things in life, the things I remember, the things I turn over in my hands, are not houses, bank accounts, prizes or promotions. What I remember is love - all love - love of this dirt road, this sunrise, a day by the river, the stranger I met in a cafe. Myself, even, which is the hardest thing of all to love, because love and selfishness are not the same thing. It is easy to be selfish. It is hard to love who I am. No wonder I am surprised if you do.
-Lighthousekeeping by Jeanette Winterson

You are the door in the rock that finally swings free when moonlight shines on it. You are the door at the top of the stairs that only appears in dreams. You are the door that sets the prisoner free. You are the carved low door into the Chapel of the Grail. You are the door at the edge of the world. You are the door that opens onto a sea of stairs.
Open me. Wide. Narrow. Pass through me, and whatever lies on the other side, could not be reached except by this. This you. This now. This caught moment opening into a lifetime.
-Lighthousekeeping by Jeanette Winterson

He doubted her. You must never doubt the one you love.
But they might not be telling the truth.
Never mind that. You tell them the truth.
What do you mean?
You can't be another person's honesty, child, but you can be your own.
So what should I say?
When I love someone?
You should say it.
-Lighthousekeeping by Jeanette Winterson

We lived for the night. The torch in your window was my signal. When it was lit, I stayed away. When you extinguished it, I came to you - secret doors, dark corridors, forbidden stairs, brushing aside fear and propriety like cobwebs. I was inside you. You contained me. Together, in bed, we could sleep, we could dream, and if we heard your servant's mournful cry, we called it a bird or a dog. The light was a lie. Only here, the sun killed, and time's hands bound, were we free. Imprisoned in each other, we were free.
-Lighthousekeeping by Jeanette Winterson

"I just want someone to hear what I have to say. And maybe if I talk long enough, it'll make sense."
-Fahrenheit 451, Ray Bradbury

It’s not that I literally think I’m a faerie. It’s just that I feel so different from most people. And this idea of a race living underground in caverns, spending all their days dancing and playing the fiddle and eating flowers and reciting poetry and sharing their dreams, that to me sounds much more real than the way people live in this world, hating and fighting and wanting and hurting.
-Violet & Claire, FLB

I wish I wasn’t a girl who needed so much but a little free creature that slept in deserts and ran on clouds and lived on lilies.
-Violet & Claire, FLB

She, too, would like to hang by her own webbed black wings that could take her away when she needed them, take her as far as the full moon that had begun to rise.
-Violet & Claire, FLB

And what would it do to me? Playing in the dark. Would I become Vile again, secretly collecting razor blades in an asylum and hiding them under my tongue to carve screenplays on my body?
-Violet & Claire, FLB

I love you
because no two snowflakes are alike
and it is possible
if you stand tippy-toe
to walk between the raindrops
I love you
because I am afraid of the dark
and can't sleep in the light
because I rub my eyes
when I wake up in the morning
and find you there
because you with all your magic powers were
determined that
I should love you
because there was nothing for you but that
I would love you
-"Resignation," Nikki Giovanni

"Yet to sing love,
love must first shatter us."
-Hilda Doolittle

"Of love...daroga...I am dying... of love...That is how it is..loved her so!...And I love her still...daroga...and I am dying of love for her, I ...I tell you!...If you knew how beautiful she was...when she let me kiss her...alive...It was the first...time, daroga, the first...time I ever kissed a woman...Yes, alive...I kissed her alive...and she looked as beautiful as if she had been dead!"
-The Phantom of the Opera, Gaston Leroux

"There is only one sin, only one. And that is theft. Every other sin is a variation of theft... When you kill a man, you steal a life. You steal his wife's right to a husband, rob his children of a father. When you tell a lie, you steal someone's right to the truth. When you cheat, you steal the right to fairness."
-The Kite Runner by Khaled Hosseini

"Surely all art is the result of one's having been in danger, of having gone through an experience all the way to the end, where no one can go any further. The further one goes, the more private, the more personal, the more singular an experience becomes, and the thing one is making is, finally, the necessary, irrepressible, and, as nearly as possible, definitive utterance of this singularity."
-Rainer Maria Rilke

You helped them to do it. You deceived me, betrayed me, and you'll do worse if you get the chance... ...if i was bound for hell let it be hell. no more false heavens. No more damned magic. You hate me and i hate you. Now. My hate is colder, stronger, and you'll have no hate to warm yourself. You will have nothing. ...nothing left but hopelessness.
Say die and i will die. Say die and watch me die.
-Jean Rhys: Wide Sargasso Sea

What she wanted was love, and the best way to go looking for it was through sex. But it never worked that way, and the sex just made her lonelier. I understood that, as it had made me lonelier too. I couldn’t ever remember being lonely before, certainly not in this way, until I had seen the edge of all the ways you could be with another person, which brought up all the myriad ways that person could never be there for you.
-Truth and Beauty: A Friendship, Anne Patchett [

...We were always escaping, you see - escaping, or standing ready to escape; running away from her demons; trying to avoid the outcome of what had been started - making off with the matches just when the fires had caught hold.
-The Piano Man's Daughter, Timothy Findley

I have wanted to kill myself a hundred times, but somehow I am still in love with life. This ridiculous weakness is perhaps one of our more stupid melancholy propensities, for is there anything more stupid than to be eager to go on carrying a burden which one would gladly throw away, to loathe one’s very being and yet to hold it fast, to fondle the snake that devours us until it has eaten our hearts away?
-Voltaire, Candide

"What's going to happen? I'm going to love you as long as you'll let me, and I'll teach you a little about literature and about real music, and then you'll break my heart."
-Love invents us, by Amy Bloom

What are you supposed to do with all the love you have for somebody if that person is no longer there? What happens to all that leftover love? Do you suppress it? Do you ignore it? Are you supposed to give it to someone else?
I never knew it was possible to think about someone all of the time, for someone to be always doing acrobatic leaps across your thoughts. Everything else was an unwelcome distraction from what I wanted to think about.
I still cannot believe you have gone. Before this, I used to wake up and wonder for a split second why I had this weight of grief pressing down on my chest and why my pillow was wet. I used to forget because it was just absurd for me to be without you. Absurd.
But you did die. And for no reason at all.
‘Life goes on’: so many people had said that to me. Yes, life fucking well goes on but what if you don’t want it to? What if you want to arrest it, stop it, or even battle against the current into a past you don’t want to be past? ‘You’ll get over it’ – that as another. But I didn’t want to get over it. I didn’t want to become used to the fact that he’d died. That was the last thing I wanted.
-After You'd Gone by Maggie O'Farrell

"You asked a question. I guess I'll have to answer. Maybe it's good and maybe it's bad to answer it. You're not clever. You don't now what you want. You have no proper fierceness. You let other people walk over you. Sometimes I think you're a weakling who will never amount to a dog turd. Does that answer your question? I love you better. I always have. This may be a bad thing to tell you, but it's true. I love you better. Else why would I have given myself the trouble of hurting you?'
-John Steinbeck, East of Eden

I'm looking for someone who will light candles,
not just curse the darkness.
-I Kissed Dating Goodbye, Joshua Harris

Sometimes, when you don't ask questions, it's not because you are afraid that someone will lie to your face.
It's because you're afraid they'll tell you the truth.
- Vanishing Acts, by Jodi Picoult

Just because lips have met doesn't mean hearts have joined.
And just because two bodies are drawn to each other,
doesn't mean two people are right for each other.
-I Kissed Dating Goodbye, Joshua Harris

She worried way too much what people thought of her, wore her heart on her sleeve, expected too much from people, and got hurt too easily. She kept people's secrets like a champ, but told her own too fast. She expected the world not to cheat her and was always surprised when it did.
-Rob Sheffield, Love Is A Mix Tape

"But what I am thinking is this: that I wish I could freeze this moment, somehow delay my final decision, and just hang here in the balance of two places, two worlds, two loves."
-Love the One You're With by Emily Giffin

I hold that day deep within myself as a reminder that love is the sum of our choices, the strength of our commitments, the ties that bind us together."
-Love the One You're With by Emily Giffin

The night broke. The thunder cracked my brain finally. The rain is coming, I promise you. I didn’t mean to but your tears will bring life back. Purple flowers grow, the color blood looks in veins. They’ll sprout out of my chest. I promise you they’ll crack the ground, grow over the freeways, down the slopes to the sea. I’ll be in their faces. I’ll be in the waves, coming down on you from the sky. I’ll be inside the one who holds you.
And then I won’t be.
-Wasteland by Francesca Lia Block

"Please, look all you wish. Books are like people. They do not bear loneliness well. Those that remain unnourished by another's touch wither and die. Here, hold it, read a little. So long as your hands are tolerably clean, that volume shall be grateful for your favour."
--The Nature of Monsters, Clare Clark

"And how can you say I love you to someone you love?
I rolled onto my side and fell asleep next to her.
Here is the point of everything I have been trying to tell you, Oskar.
It's always necessary."
-Extremely Loud & Incredibly Close by Jonathan Safran Foer

Because a real kiss, a kiss that two real people choose to give each other - it's something that can't be filmed or photographed or drawn, or even described with words. Because a kiss isn't what it looks like or how it feels. A real kiss happens down deep inside of two hearts at the same time. It's hidden away. A real kiss is invisible.
-Things That Are by Andrew Clements

The stranger says there are no more couches and he will have to
sleep in your bed. You try to warn him, you tell him
you will want to get inside him, and ruin him,
but he doesn't listen.
You do this, you do. You take the things you love
and tear them apart
or you pin them down with your body and pretend they're yours.
So, you kiss him, and he doesn't move, he doesn't
pull away, and you keep on kissing him. And he hasn't moved,
he's frozen, and you've kissed him, and he'll never
forgive you, and maybe now he'll never leave you alone.
-Richard Siken, A Primer For the Small Weird Loves

“People who talk about their dreams are actually trying to tell you things about themselves they’d never admit in normal conversation.”
-Killing Yourself to Live: 85% of a True Story by Chuck Klosterman

But memories don't help. They can even get in the way. It seems to me that most of the time people use their memories to make their past life seem better than it was, or happier. Or just the opposite. They only remember the worst. Either way, memories aren't real. They're a kind of fiction, if you ask me. Anyhow, people make them into what they want them to be, and then believe their life was like that. But I want to know what my life really was, really is now not then.
-aidan chambers, "the toll bridge"

In LIFE as in LOVE, the closeness of another IS the soul of meaning, the sharing of intimacy, the touch of harmony, the completion of passion.
She knew that better than anyone, and sacrificed herself for it.
-Iain Wodehouse-Easton

I wait here at the boundaries of dream,
all shadow-wrapped. The dark air tastes of night,
so cold and crisp, and I wait for my love.
The moon has bleached the color from her stone.
She'll come, and then we'll stalk this pretty world
alive to darkness and the tang of blood.
It is a lonely game, the quest for blood,
but still, a body's got the right to dream
and I'd not give it up for all the world.
The moon has leeched the darkness from the night.
I stand in shadows, staring at her stone:
Undead, my lover . . . O, undead my love?
I dreamt you while I slept today and love
meant more to me than life -- meant more than blood.
The sunlight sought me, deep beneath my stone,
more dead than any corpse but still a-dream
until I woke as vapor into night
and sunset forced me out into the world.
For many centuries I've walked the world
dispensing something that resembled love --
a stolen kiss, then back into the night
contented by the life and by the blood.
And come the morning I was just a dream,
cold body chilling underneath a stone.
I said I would not hurt you. Am I stone
to leave you prey to time and to the world?
I offered you a truth beyond your dreams
while all you had to offer was your love.
I told you not to worry and that blood
tastes sweeter on the wing and late at night.
Sometimes my lovers rise to walk the night . . .
Sometimes they lie, cold corpse beneath a stone,
and never know the joys of bed and blood,
of walking through the shadows of the world;
instead they rot to maggots. O my love
they whispered you had risen, in my dream.
I've waited by your stone for half the night
but you won't leave your dream to hunt for blood.
Good night, my love. I offered you the world.
-Vampire Sestina by Neil Gaiman

"The more girls a boy has, the better. he has a bright look, having reaped fruits, blooming. he stalks around, sure-shouldered, and you have the feeling he's got more in him, a fatter heart, more stories to tell. for a girl. With each boy it's as though a petal gets plucked each time."
-Lust, Susan Minot

"After sex, you curl up like a shrimp, something deep inside you ruined ... after the briskness of loving, loving stops. and you roll over with death stretched out alongside you like a feather boa, or a snake, light as air, and you...you don't even ask for anything or try to say something to him because it's obviously your own damn fault. ... you open your legs but can't, or don't dare anymore, to open your heart."
-Lust, Susan Minot

She wants to gobble up time, to rush through days and weeks and years with him, so they can do everything right now. But, at the same time, she wants to freeze it: she knows enough about love to be aware of its double bind - that there's no love without pain, that you can't ever love someone without that tinge of dread at how it might end.
-After You'd Gone, Maggie O'Farrell

She had been right. The world was a terrible place, cruel, pitiless, dark as a bad dream. Not a good place to live in. Only in books could you find pity, comfort, happiness--and love. Books loved anyone who opened them, they gave you security and friendship and didn't ask anything in return; they never went away, never, not even when you treated them badly.
-Cornelia Funke, Inkheart

"People don't want their lives fixed. Nobody wants their problems solved. Their drams. Their distractions. Their stories resolved. Their messes cleaned up. Because what would they have left? Just the big scary unknown."
-Survivor by Chuck Palahniuk.

Here's to the crazy ones.
The misfits. The rebels.
The troublemakers. The round
pegs in the square holes - the
ones who see things differently.
They're not fond of rules and
they have no respect for
the status quo. You can praise
them, disagree with them,
quote them, disbelieve them,
glorify or vilify them.
About the only thing that you
can't do is ignore them.
Because they change things.
-Here's to the Crazy Ones, by Jack Kerouac

Shadows on the wall
Noises down the hall
Life doesn’t frighten me at all
Bad dogs barking loud
Big ghosts in a cloud
Life doesn’t frighten me at all
Don’t show me frogs and snakes
And listen for my scream,
If I’m afraid at all
It’s only in my dreams.
I’ve got a magic charm
That I keep up my sleeve
I can walk the ocean floor
And never have to breathe.
Life doesn’t frighten me at all
Not at all
Not at all.
Life doesn’t frighten me at all.
-Maya Angelou

Sometimes you couldn't face the sadness of being forgotten until you felt the comfort of being remembered again.
-The Last Summer (of You and Me) by Ann Brashares

Let me love you, but don't love me back. Do love me and let me hate you for a while. Let me feel like I have some control, because I know I never do.
-The Last Summer (of You and Me) by Ann Brashares

"Now I am quietly waiting for
the catastrophe of my personality
to seem beautiful again,
and interesting, and modern."
—"Mayakovsky," Frank O'Hara

"I think that real friendship always makes us feel such sweet gratitude, because the world almost always seems like a very hard desert, and the flowers that grow there seem to grow against such high odds."
-The Eyes of the Dragon, Stephen King

If this girl can give a soul to those who have lived without one, if she can create the sense of beauty in people whose lives have been sordid and ugly, if she can strip them of their selfishness and lend them tears for sorrows that are not their own, she is worthy of all your adoration, worthy of the adoration of the world.
-Oscar Wilde, The Picture of Dorian Gray

"We both know life is short.Too short to waste time with anyone who doesnt appreciate and value you."
-The Truth About Forever

‘You’ll get over it. . .’ It’s the clichés that cause the trouble. To lose someone you love is to alter your life forever. You don’t get over it because ‘it’ is the person you loved. The pain stops, there are new people, but the gap never closes. How could it? The particularness of someone who mattered enough to grieve over is not made anodyne by death. This hole in my heart is in the shape of you and no-one else can fit it. Why would I want them to?
-Jeanette Winterson, Written on the Body

The fluttering in the stomach goes away and the dull waking pain. Sometimes I think of you and I feel giddy. Memory makes me lightheaded, drunk on champagne. All the things we did. And if anyone had said this was the price I would have agreed to pay it. that surprises me; that with the hurt and the mess comes a shaft of recognition. It was worth it. Love is worth it.
-Jeanette Winterson, Written on the Body

Not even one's own pain weighs so heavy as the pain one feels with someone, for someone, a pain intensified by the imagination and prolonged by a hundred echoes.
-The Unbearable Lightness of Being by Milan Kundera

“I don't pretend to know what love is for everyone, but I can tell you what it is for me; love is knowing all about someone, and still wanting to be with them more than any other person, love is trusting them enough to tell them everything about yourself, including the things you might be ashamed of, love is feeling comfortable and safe with someone, but still getting weak knees when they walk into a room and smile at you.”

It's so hard to forget pain, but it's even harder to remember sweetness. We have no scar to show for happiness. We learn so little from peace.
-Chuck Palahniuk, Diary

All the effort in the world won't matter if you're not inspired.
-Chuck Palahniuk, Diary

" You were just a boy on a bed in a room, like a kaleidoscope is a tube full of bits of broken glass. But the way I saw you was pieces refracting the light, shifting into an infinite universe of flowers and rainbows and insects and planets, magical dividing cells, pictures no one else knew."
-Wasteland, Francesca Lia Block

Now I am not sure about that letter I sent. Not sure at all. For was I not the one who acquiesced, mutely responsive and receptive? Was I not guilty of letting a boy be drawn to self-hatred? And yet does it not all come again to the fact that it is a man's world? For if a man chooses to be promiscuous, he may still aesthetically turn up his nose at promiscuity. He may still demand a woman be faithful to him, to save him from his own lust. But women have lust, too. Why should they be relegated to the position of custodian of emotions, watcher of the infants, feeder of soul, body, and pride of man? Being born a woman is my awful tragedy. From the moment I was conceived I was doomed to spout breasts and ovaries rather than penis and scrotum; to have my whole circle of action, thought and feeling rigidly circumscribed by my inescapable femininity. Yes, my consuming desire to mingle with road crews, sailors and soldiers, bar room regulars - to be a part of a scene, anonomous, listening, recording - all is spoiled by the fact that I am a girl, a female always in danger of assault and battery. My consuming interest in men and their lives is often misconstructed as a desire to seduce them, or as an invitation to intimacy. Yet, God, I want to talk to everybody I can as deeply as I can. I want to be able to sleep in an open field, to travel west, to walk freely at night...
-from the Journals of Sylvia Plath

"To him she seemed so beautiful, so seductive, so different from ordinary people, that he could not understand why no one was as disturbed as he by the clicking of her heels on the paving stones, why no one else's heart was wild with the breeze stirred by the sighs of her veils, why everyone did not go mad with the movements of her braid, the flight of her hands, the gold of her laughter. He had not missed a single one of her gestures, not one of the indications of her character, but he did not dare approach her for fear of destroying the spell."
-Love in the Time of Cholera-Gabriel Gárcia Márquez

Being a woman is a fate Sabina did not choose. What we have not chosen we cannot consider either our merit or our failure. Sabina believed that she had to assume the correct attitude to her unchosen fate. To rebel against being born a woman seemed as foolish to her as to take pride in it.
-The Unbearable Lightness of Being by Milan Kundera

“ Perhaps love is the process of my leading you gently back to yourself. “
— Antoine de Saint-Exupé

The world is all backward. Everyone who is considered really hot, really isn't. It's like we're through the looking glass. Good is bad, bad is good. Black is white, white is black. People base their lives on convenient recollections and are considered sane. People who look too hard for the truth are considered crazy.
-What Happened to Lani Garver by Carol Plum Ucci

One of the reasons we crave love, and seek it so desperately, is that love is the only cure for loneliness, and shame, and sorrow. but some feelings sink so deep into the heart that only loneliness can help you find them again. some truths about yourself are so painful that only shame can help you live with them. and some things are just so sad that only your soul can do the crying for you.
-Shantaram, Gregory David Roberts

"If the soul is left in darkness, sins will be committed. The guilty one is not he who commits the sin, but the one who causes the darkness."
-Les Miserables, by Victor Hugo

"Sometimes fate is like a small sandstorm that keeps changing directions. You change direction but the sandstorm chases you. You turn again, but the storm adjusts. Over and over you play this out, like some ominous dance with death just before dawn. Why? Because this storm isn't something that blew in from far away, something that has nothing to do with you. This storm is you. Something inside of you. So all you can do is give in to it, step right inside the storm, closing your eyes and plugging up your ears so the sand doesn't get in, and walk through it, step by step. There's no sun there, no moon, no direction, no sense of time. Just fine white sand swirling up into the sky like pulverized bones. That's the kind of sandstorm you need to imagine.
And you really will have to make it through that violent, metaphysical, symbolic storm. No matter how metaphysical or symbolic it might be, make no mistake about it: it will cut through flesh like a thousand razor blades. People will bleed there, and you will bleed too. Hot, red blood. You'll catch that blood in your hands, your own blood and the blood of others.
And once the storm is over you won't remember how you made it through, how you managed to survive. You won't even be sure, in fact, whether the storm is really over. But one thing is certain. When you come out of the storm you won't be the same person who walked in. That's what this storm's all about."
-Haruki Murakami, Kafka on the Shore

He refused to give her what she wanted. She refused to take what he gave.
- Forever in Blue: The Fourth Summer of the Sisterhood by Ann Brashares.

After that she spent a lot of time convincing herself that what you saw, even what you felt, had an unreliable relationship to what was actually there. What was actually there was reality, regardless of whether you saw it or how you felt about it.
- Forever in Blue: The Fourth Summer of the Sisterhood by Ann Brashares.

"But what does it matter what reality is outside myself, so long as it has helped me to live, to feel that I am, and what I am?"
-Charles Baudelaire

"I find myself moving like a knife, carving my way around people, cutting myself out of their picture and leaving nothing of myself behind but a hole."
-Jack Gantos, Hole in My Life

"The person you love and the person who loves you are never the same person."
-Chuck Palahniuk, Invisible Monsters

"Every movement I made was an effort of will and sometimes I wondered that no one noticed this."
--Jean Rhys, Wide Sargasso Sea

"In the coffin my room has become,
I talk to God
about the infrequency of rain
about people who can't see the current gentleness
running under the pale crust of my skin."
--"Gravity" by Maura O'Connor

"I'm a good person. In most ways. But I'm beginning to think that being a good person in most ways doesn't count for anything very much, if you're a bad person in one way."
-How To Be Good by Nick Hornby

“ I knew that there were no guarantees. No way of knowing what came next for me, for him, or anybody. Some things don’t last forever, but some things do. Like a good song, or a good book, or a good memory you can take out and unfold in your darkest times, pressing down the corners and peering in close, hoping you still recognize the person you see there."
-This Lullaby, Sarah Dessen

"You know how they say you only hurt the ones you love? Well, it works both ways."
— Chuck Palahniuk [Fight Club]

"Most times, it's just a lot easier not to let the world know what's wrong."
— Chuck Palahniuk [Invisible Monsters]

“If I speak in the tongues of men and of angels, but have not love, I am only a resounding gong or a clanging cymbal. If I have the gift of prophecy and can fathom all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have a faith that can move mountains, but have not love, I am nothing. If I give all I possess to the poor and surrender my body to the flames, but have not love, I gain nothing.
Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. 6Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.
Love never fails. But where there are prophecies, they will cease; where there are tongues, they will be stilled; where there is knowledge, it will pass away. For we know in part and we prophesy in part, but when perfection comes, the imperfect disappears. When I was a child, I talked like a child, I thought like a child, I reasoned like a child. When I became a man, I put childish ways behind me. Now we see but a poor reflection as in a mirror; then we shall see face to face. Now I know in part; then I shall know fully, even as I am fully known."
-I Corinthians 13:1

I remember love. It’s what I have to keep on reminding myself. It’s funny how you can forget everything except people loving you. Maybe that’s why humans find it so hard getting over love affairs. It’s not the pain they’re getting over, it’s the love.
-Jellicoe Road by Melina Marchetta

"This rudderless world is not shaped by vague metaphysical forces. It is not God who kills the children. Not fate that butchers them or destiny that feeds them to the dogs. It's us. Only us."
Alan Moore, Watchmen

"I'll write this all down for you," I said. "I'll put it in a story." I don't know if that's what he wanted to ask me, but it's something everybody wants--for someone to see the hurt done to them and set it down like it matters.
-The Secret Life of Bees- Sue Monk Kidd

"I wonder what kind of person would come out if I ever did erase all my inhibitions at once, what kind of being is bottled up inside me now."
-Something Happened by Joseph Heller

She was a genius of sadness, immersing herself in it, separating its numerous strands, appreciating its subtle nuances. She was a prism through which sadness could be divided into its infinite spectrum.
-Everything Is Illuminated, Jonathan Safran Foer

He awoke each morning with the desire to do right, to be a good and meaningful person, to be, as simple as it sounded and as impossible as it actually was, happy. And during the course of each day his heart would descend from his chest into his stomach.
By early afternoon he was overcome by the feeling that nothing was right, or nothing was right for him, and by the desire to be alone. By evening he was fulfilled: alone in the magnitude of his grief, alone in his aimless guilt, alone even in his loneliness. I am not sad, he would repeat to himself over and over, I am not sad. As if he might one day convince himself. Or fool himself. Or convince others- the only thing worse than being sad is for others to know that you are sad.
I am not sad. I am not sad.
Because his life has unlimited potential for happiness, insofar as it was an empty white room. He would fall asleep with his heart at the foot of his bed, like some domesticated animal that was no part of him at all. And each morning he would wake with it again in the cupboard of his rib cage, having become a little heavier, a little weaker, but still pumping.
And by midafternoon he was again overcome with the desire to be somewhere else, someone else, someone else somewhere else. I am not sad.
-Everything Is Illuminated, Jonathan Safran Foer

“'You'll be sick of feeling troubled or deeply in love or quietly uncertain or even content for the first time in your life. It won't matter. Out of the blue, beyond any cause you can trace, you'll suddenly realize things are not how you perceived them to be at all. For some reason, you will no longer be the person you believed you once were. You'll detect slow and subtle shifts going on all around you, more importantly shifts in you. Worse, you'll realize it's always been shifting, like a shimmer of sorts, a vast shimmer, only dark like a room. But you won't understand why or how. You'll have forgotten what granted you this awareness in the first place.
'Old shelters—television, magazines, movies—won't protect you anymore. You might try scribbling in a journal, on a napkin, maybe even in the margins of this book. That's when you'll discover you no longer trust the very walls you always took for granted. Even the hallways you've walked a hundred times will feel longer, much longer, and the shadows, any shadow at all, will suddenly seem deeper, much, much, deeper.
'You might try then, as I did, to find a sky so full of stars it will blind you again. Only no sky can blind you now. Even with all that iridescent magic up there, your eye will no longer linger on the light, it will no longer trace constellations. You'll care only about the darkness and you'll watch it for hours, for days, maybe even for years, trying in vain to believe you're some kind of indispensable, universe-appointed sentinel, as if just by looking you could actually keep it all at bay. It will get so bad you'll be afraid to look away, you'll be afraid to sleep.
'Then no matter where you are, in a crowded restaurant or on some desolate street or even in the comforts of your own home, you'll watch yourself dismantle every assurance you ever lived by. You'll stand aside as a great complexity intrudes, tearing apart, piece by piece, all of your carefully conceived denials, whether deliberate or unconscious. And then for better or worse you'll turn, unable to resist, though try to resist you still will, fighting with everything you've got not to face the thing you most dread, what is now, what will be, what has always come before, the creature you truly are, the creature we all are, buried in the nameless black of a name.
'And then the nightmares will begin.'”
-House Of Leaves by Mark Z. Danielewski

Why? Why does what was beautiful suddenly shatter in hindsight because it concealed dark truths? Why does the memory of years of happy marriage turn to gall when our partner is revealed to have had a lover all those years? Because such a situation makes it impossible to be happy? But we were happy! Sometimes the memory of happiness cannot stay true because it ended unhappily. Because happiness is only real if it lasts forever? Because things always end painfully if they contained pain, conscious or unconscious, all along? But what is unconscious, unrecognized pain?
Is that was sadness is all about? Is it what comes over us when beautiful memories shatter in hindsight because the remembered happiness fed not just on actual circumstances but on a promise that was not kept?
~The Reader by Bernhard Schlink

Does everyone feel this way? When I was young, I was perpetually overconfident or insecure. Either I felt completely useless, unattractive, and worthless, or that I was pretty much a success, and everything I did was bound to succeed. When I was confident, I could overcome the hardest challenges. But all it took was the smallest setback for me to be sure that I was utterly worthless. Regaining my self-confidence had nothing to do with success; every goal I set myself, every recognition I craved made anything I actually did seem paltry by comparison, and whether I experienced it as a failure or triumph was utterly dependent on my mood.
~The Reader by Bernhard Schlink

What if the water that came out of the shower was treated with a chemical that responded to a combination of things like your heartbeat, and your body temperature, and your brian waves, so that your skin changed color according to your mood? If you were extremely excited your skin would turn green, and if you were angry you'd turn red, obviously, and if you felt like shiitake you'd turn brown, and if you were blue you'd turn blue.
Everyone could know what everyone else felt, and we could be more careful with each other, because you'd never want to tell a person whose skin was purple that you're angry at her for being late, just like you would want to pat a pink person on the back and tell him, "Congratulations!"
Another good reason it would be a good invention is that there are so many times when you know you're feeling a lot of something, but you don't know what something is. Am I frustrated? Am I actually just panicky? And that confusion changes your mood, it becomes your mood, and you become a confused, gray person. But with the special water, you could look at your orange hands and think, I'm happy! That whole time I was actually happy! What a relief!"
-Jonathan Safran Foer, Extremely Loud & Incredibly Close

"Sometimes you can't be what you ought to be, you can't have what you ought to have. And life changes. Maybe a little, maybe a lot. And at some point it just isn't worth trying to fix what went wrong."
-Lincoln Rhyme, The Bone Collector

"The love I've known is the love of two people staring not at each other, but in the same direction."
-Frank Bidart, "To The Dead"

"Every book, every volume you see here, has a soul. The soul of the person who wrote it and of those who read it and lived and dreamed with it."
-The Shadow of the Wind, Carlos Ruiz Zafon

I felt myself surrounded by millions of abandoned pages, by worlds and souls without an owner sinking in an ocean of darkness, while the world that throbbed outside the library seemed to be losing its memory, day after day, unknowingly, feeling all the wiser the more it forgot.
-The Shadow of the Wind, Carlos Ruiz Zafon

"Books are mirrors: you only see in them what you already have inside you."
-The Shadow of the Wind, Carlos Ruiz Zafon

"You spend your whole life stuck in the labyrinth, thinking about how you'll escape it one day, and how awesome it will be, and imagining that future keeps you going, but you never do it. You just use the future to escape the present."
-Looking For Alaska by John Green

So it is…that we can seldom help anybody. Either we don’t know what part to give or maybe we don’t like to give any part of ourselves. Then, more often than not, the part that is needed is not wanted. And even more often, we do not have the part that is needed.
- Norman F. Maclean, A River Runs Through It

A kiss is a sign of love; but it is a giving of one's breath, or spirit, which is inseparable from life itself. The purpose of all love is to take the beloved into oneself to possess it, to become identified with it.
... But despite this desire to be one with the beloved, there must still be distinctness. If the other person were destroyed, there would be no love. Unity must not mean absorption or annihilation or destruction, but the fullness of one in the other. To be one without ceasing to be distinct, that is the paradox of love!
-Three To Get Married by Monsignor Fulton J. Sheen

"I am an excitable person who only understands life lyrically, musically, in whom feelings are much stronger as reason. I am so thirsty for the marvelous that only the marvelous has power over me. Anything I can not transform into something marvelous, I let go. Reality doesn't impress me. I only believe in intoxication, in ecstasy, and when ordinary life shackles me, I escape, one way or another. No more walls."
-Incest by Anais Nin

The teeth at your bones are your own, the hunger is yours, forgiveness is yours.
The sins of the fathers belong to you and to the forest and even to the ones in the iron bracelets, and here you stand, remembering their songs.
Slide the weight from your shoulders and move forward.
You are afraid you might forget, but you never will.
You will forgive and remember.
Think of the vine that curls from the small square plot that was once my heart.
That is the only marker you need.
Move on.
Walk forward into the light.
~Barbara Kingsolver

For all his wisdom, he did not know that love cannot be tested. Honesty can be tested, and loyalty. But there is no test for love. Love goes on forever, once it begins, even if we come to hate the one we love. Love goes on forever because love is born in the part of us that does not die.
-Gregory David Roberts, Shantaram

Not a red rose or a satin heart.
I give you an onion.
It is a moon wrapped in brown paper.
It promises light
like the careful undressing of love.
It will blind you with tears
like a lover.
It will make your reflection
a wobbling photo of grief.
I am trying to be truthful.
- Carol Ann Duffy, Valentine

“There is nothing heavier than compassion. Not even one’s own pain weights so heavy as the pain one feels for someone, with someone, a pain intensified by the imagination and prolonged by a hundred echoes.”
-The Unbearable Lightness of Being by Milan Kundera

It may be that you are not yourself luminous, but you are a conductor of light.
-Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, The Hound of Baskervilles

"Why is it that the most unoriginal thing we can say to one another is still the thing we long to hear? 'I love you' is always a quotation. You did not say it first and neither did I, yet when you say it and when I say it we speak like savages who have found three words and worship them."
-Written on the Body, Jeanette Winterson

My darkness, are you lonely?

Only listen, and I will listen to you.
Only watch me, and I will watch into your eyes.
Only know that I am awake and aware of you, only be my friend, and I will be your friend.
You need not ever fear; or ever be lonely; or want for love.
Tell me your secrets; you can trust me.
Come near. Come very near.
-A Death in the Family by James Agee

By watching, I know that the stars are not going to last. I have seen some of the best ones melt and run down the sky. Since one can melt, they can all melt; since they can all melt, they can all melt the same night. That sorrow will come--I know it. I mean to sit up every night and look at them as long as I can keep awake; and I will impress those sparkling fields on my memory, so that by and by when they are taken away I can by my fancy restore those lovely myriads to the black sky and make them sparkle again, and double them by the blur of my tears.
-The Diary of Adam and Eve, Mark Twain

I speak not, I trace not, I breathe not thy name;
There is grief in the sound, there is guilt in the fame;
But the tear that now burns on my cheek may impart
The deep thoughts that dwell in that silence of heart.
-I Speak Not, Lord Byron

How could I not love this man? But it was the love of a ghost. Arms that encircled but did not touch. A bowl full of rice but without my appetite to eat it. No hunger. No fullness.
-The Joy Luck Club by Amy Tan

"Maybe crying is a means of cleaning yourself out emotionally. Or maybe it's your communication of last resort; the only way to express yourself when words fail the same as when you were a baby and had no words."

"She talked about wanting to be a part of something, wanting to be desired, to be 'special', craving to be loved. She talked about experiencing the kind of loneliness so immense it could swallow you up. She called it 'loneliness that crowds couldn't cure'."
—Cupcake Brown

"I miss you Louise. Many waters cannot quench love, neither can floods drown it. What then kills love? Only this: Neglect. Not to see you when you stand before me. Not to think of you in the little things. Not to make the road wide for you, the table spread for you. To choose you out of habit not desire, to pass the flower seller without a thought. To leave the dishes unwashed, make use of you at night. To crave another while pecking your cheek. To say your name without hearing it, to assume it is mine to call."
-Written on the Body - J. W.

A man who wants to die feels angry and full of life and desperate and bored and exhausted, all at the same time; he wants to fight everyone, and he wants to curl up in a ball and hide in a cupboard somewhere. He wants to say sorry to everyone, and he wants them to know just how badly they've all let him down.
-nick hornby, a long way down

“Somewhere someone is thinking of you. Someone is calling you an angel. This person is using celestial colors to paint your image. Someone is making you into a vision so beautiful that it can only live in the mind. Someone is thinking of the way your breath escapes your lips when you are touched. How your eyes close and your jaw tightens with concentration as you give pleasure a home. These thoughts are saving a life somewhere right now. In some airless apartment on a dark, urine stained, whore lined street, someone is calling out to you silently and you are answering without even being there. So crystalline. So pure. Such life saving power when you smile. You will never know how you have cauterized my wounds. So sad that we will never touch. How it hurts me to know that I will never be able to give you everything I have.”
-Henry Rollins

"I hope that one day you will have the experience of doing something you do not understand for someone you love."
-jonathan safran foer, extremely loud & incredibly close

"You'll be sick or feeling troubled or deeply in love or quietly uncertain or even content for the first time in your life. It won't matter. Out of the blue, beyond any cause you can trace, you'll suddenly realize things are not how you perceived them to be at all. For some reason, you will no longer be the person you believed you once were. You'll detect slow and subtle shifts going on all around you, more importantly shifts in you. Worse, you'll realize it's always been shifting, like a shimmer of sorts, a vast shimmer, only dark like a room. But you won't understand why or how."
-mark z. danielewski, house of leaves

You listen, you listen to the moonlight, to the earthworms revelling in the lawn, you celebrate your own quick heartbeat.
—“Good Bones” by Margaret Atwood

Human beings often display emotion they do not feel. And they often feel emotion they do not display.
That's a description of me all right. I keep myself locked as a box when it matters, and broken open when it doesn't matter at all.
-The Stone Gods, Jeanette Winterson

"From the way that people have always talked about your heart being broken, it sort of seemed to be a one-time thing. Mine seemed to break all the time."
-heather o'neill, lullabies for little criminals

"Your superhuman power was to be able not to feel. Is it there inside everybody, this self that comes out while you are in captivity? You become the closest approximation of yourself that can tolerate living there."
-heather o'neill, lullabies for little criminals

Why do people have to be this lonely? What's the point of it all? Millions of people in this world, all of them yearning, looking to other's to satisfy them, yet isolating themselves. Why? Was Earth put here just to nourish human loneliness? - Sputnik Sweetheart - Haruki Murakami

The one you love and the one who loves you are never, ever the same person - Invisible Monsters - Chuck Palahniuk

“To make absolute, unconditional surrender to the woman one loves is to break every bond save the desire not to lose her, which is the most terrible bond of all.”
-Sexus, Henry Miller

Out of the night that covers me,
Black as the pit from pole to pole,
I thank whatever gods may be
For my unconquerable soul.
In the fell clutch of circumstance
I have not winced nor cried aloud.
Under the bludgeonings of chance
My head is bloody, but unbowed.
Beyond this place of wrath and tears
Looms but the Horror of the shade,
And yet the menace of the years
Finds and shall find me unafraid.
It matters not how strait the gate,
How charged with punishments the scroll,
I am the master of my fate:
I am the captain of my soul.
~~William Ernest Henley
Current Mood: blahblah
Bloody Demise of a Fallen Dream
28 May 2007 @ 11:37 pm
If only you'd remember before ever you sit down to write that you've been a reader long before you were ever a writer. You simply fix that fact in your mind, then sit very still and ask yourself, as a reader, what piece of writing in all the world Buddy Glass would most want to read if he had his heart's choice. The next step is terrible, but so simple I can hardly believe it as I write it. You just sit down shamelessly and write the thing yourself. I won't even underline that. It's too important to be underlined. Oh, dare to do it, Buddy! Trust your heart. You're a deserving craftsman. It would never betray you. Good night. I'm feeling very much over-excited now, and a little dramatic, but I think I'd give almost anything on earth to see you writing a something, an anything, a story, a poem, a tree, that was really and truly after your own heart.
-Seymour: An Introduction by JD Salinger

"The hardest thing on earth is choosing what matters."
-The Secret Life of Bees by Sue Monk Kidd

"It is hard to imagine a more stupid or more dangerous way of making decisions than by putting those decisions in the hands of people who pay no price for being wrong."
-Thomas Sowell

She is overtaken by a sensation of unbeing. There is no other word for it.
-Michael Cunningham, The Hours

"Look at me or leave me. But don't stay and look at anything else."
-Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close, Jonathan Safran Foer

You can't enter the struggle if you don't accept the pain.
-The Hidden, Kathryn Mackel

"I want in fact more of you. You are dazzling ... you are beautiful; you are more than tactful, you are tenderly, magically tactile. But you are not kind. There it is. You are not kind."
-Henry James to Morton Fullerton

"The reason death sticks so closely to life isn't biological necessity---it's envy. Life is so beautiful that death has fallen in love with it, a jealous, possessive love that grabs at what it can. But life leaps over oblivion lightly, losing only a thing or two of no importance, and gloom is but the passing shadow of a cloud."
-Life of Pi, Yann Martel

An hour or two went by. It must have been a good conversation, because the next thing he knew Alma had told him to close his eyes. Then she kissed him. Her kiss was a question he wanted to spend his whole life answering.
-The History of Love, Nicole Krauss

It’s like walking past a mirror you’ve walked past every day of your life, and suddenly it shows you something else, something troubling and strange.
-Never Let Me Go by Kazuo Ishiguro

"That's life for you," said McDunn. "Someone always waiting for someone who never comes home. Always someone loving some thing more than that thing loves them. And after a while you want to destroy whatever that thing is, so it can't hurt you no more."
-"The Foghorn" by Ray Bradbury

We’re shooting the scene where I swallow your heart and you make me spit it up again. I swallow your heart and it crawls right out of my mouth.
-"Dirty Valentine" by Richard Siken

“If chained is where you have been, your arms will always bear the marks of the shackles. What you have to lose is your own story, your own slant. You’ll look at the scars on your arms and see mere ugliness or you’ll take great care to look away from them and see nothing. Either way, you have no words for the story of where you came from…we are our injuries as much as we are our successes.”
-The Poisonwood Bible, Barbara Kingsolver

"We can only speak of the things we carried with us, and the things we took away."
-The Poisonwood Bible, Barbara Kingsolver

" It is true I do not speak as well as I can think. But that is true of most people, as nearly as I can tell."
-The Poisonwood Bible, Barbara Kingsolver

" …it’s frightening when things you love appear suddenly changed from what you have always known."
-The Poisonwood Bible, Barbara Kingsolver

I have suffered often, I have been sometimes mistaken, but I have loved.
It is I who have lived, not some factitious being created by false pride.
-George Sand in a letter to Musset

All human love is a dramatic enactment of the wild, reckless, unquenchable, undrainable love that powers the universe. If death is everywhere and inescapable, then so is love, if we but knew it. We can begin to know it through each other. The tamer my love, the farther away it is from love. In fierceness, in heat, in longing, in risk, I find something of love’s nature. In my desire for you, I burn at the right temperature to walk through love’s fire.
So when you ask me why I cannot love you more calmly, I answer that to love you calmly is not to love you at all.
-"The Powerbook" by Jeanette Winterson

For each of us, I think, one person exists for whom we would change our whole world, though we never believe this until we discover ourselves ready to make that previously unthinkable change. Someone for whom we would leave everything we own, for whom we would travel to foreign lands and suffer foreign ways and foreign climes willingly, because when we discover that one someone, our home is no longer a thing with walls of stone and windows of glass. That one person becomes our home, and where he goes, there too is everything we value.
-Holly Lisle, 'Talyn'

"Certainly my inner world will never be a peaceful place of bloom; it will have some peace, and occasional riots of bloom, but always a little fight going on too. There is no way I can be peacefully happy in this society and in this skin. I am committed to Uneasy Street."
-Alice Sheldon by James Tiptree

"She knew that this dark, messy, inexplicably beautiful entanglement was a choice. It was not fated, and she could leave anytime she liked. If she were to stay, she would have to do so knowing that a life with him was but one option of out of a million.
"But then, life is a constant withering of possibilities. Some are stolen with the lives of people you love. Other are let go, with regret and reluctance and deep, deep sorrow. But there is compensation for lives unlived in the intoxicating joy of knowing that the life you have - right here, right now - is the one you have chosen. There is power in that, and hope."
-Taming the Beast, Emily Maguire

"What should I do about the wild and the tame? The wild heart that wants to be free, and the tame heart that wants to come home. I want to be held. I don't want you to come too close. I want you to scoop me up and bring me home at night. I don't want to tell you where I am. I want to keep a place among the rocks where no one can find me. I want to be with you."
-Winterson, Lighthousekeeping

"Beauty is terror. Whatever we call beautiful, we quiver before it. And what could be more terrifying and beautiful, to souls like the Greeks or our own, than to lose control completely? To throw off the chains of being for an instant, to shatter the accident of our mortal selves? Euripides speaks of the Maenads: head thrown back, throat to the stars, 'more like deer than human being.' To be absolutely free! One is quite capable, of course, of working out these destructive passions in more vulgar and less efficient ways. But how glorious to release them in a single burst! To sing, to scream, to dance barefoot in the woods in the dead of night, with no more awareness of mortality than an animal! These are powerful mysteries. The bellowing of bulls. Springs of honey bubbling from the ground. If we are strong enough in our souls we can rip away the veil and look that naked, terrible beauty right in the face; let God consume us, devour us, unstring our bones. Then spit us out reborn."
-The Secret History, by Donna Tartt

"If you truly want to know a person, you need to look beyond the public face, the jobs on the resume, the books on the shelves, the family pictures on the desk. You may learn more from what's hidden in a drawer. There is always more to us than what we will admit."
Reefer Madness by Eric Schlosser

'Shall I turn on the light?' she asked.
'No,' he said. 'I'll try to remember something.' He began to say aloud the only poem he knew by heart. As he spoke the words out into the semi-darkness they sounded extremely beautiful, he thought, because they could not see each other, perhaps.
-Virginia Woolf, The Years

"It is a world of impulse. It is a world of sincerity. It is a world in which every word spoken speaks just to that moment, every glance given has only one meaning, each kiss is a kiss of immediacy."
-Einstein's Dreams

Brave love, dream
not of staunching such strict flame, but come,
lean to my wound; burn on, burn on.
-Firesong; Sylvia Plath

“First came the sound of wind, a rushing we decided later must have been caused by her wedding dress filling with air. This was brief. A human body falls fast. The main thing was just that: the fact of a person taking on completely physical properties, falling at the speed of a rock. It didn’t matter whether her brain continued to flash on the way down, or if she regretted what she’d done, or if she had time to focus on the fence spikes shooting toward her. Her mind no longer existed in any way that mattered.”
-Jeffrey Eugenides, The Virgin Suicides
"She was young enough and inexperienced enough to make many demands upon life--that it should be romantic, that it should, in the issues that it presented, be honest and open and clear, that it should allow her to settle her own place in it without any hurt to anyone else, that it should, in fact, arrange any number of compromises to suit herself and that it should nevertheless be so honest that it would admit of no compromises at all.
She approached life with all the reckless boldness of one who has never come into direct contact with it."
-from The Duchess of Wrexe by Hugh Walpole

No, we never sicken with love twice. Cupid spends no second arrow on the same heart. Love's handmaids are our life-long friends. Respect, and affection, our doors may always be left open for, but their great celestial master, in his royal progress, pays but one visit and departs. We like, we cherish, we are very, very fond of--but we never love again. A man's heart is a firework that once in its time flashes heavenward. Meteor-like, it blazes for a moment and lights with its glory the whole world beneath. Then the night of our sordid commonplace life closes in around it, and the burned-out case, falling back to earth, lies useless and uncared for, slowly smoldering into ashes. Once, breaking loose from our prison bonds, we dare, as mighty old Prometheus dared, to scale the Olympian mount and snatch
from Phoebus' chariot the fire of the gods. Happy those who, hastening down again ere it dies out, can kindle their earthly altars at its flame. Love is too pure a light to burn long among the noisome gases that we breathe, but before it is choked out we may use it as a torch to ignite the cozy fire of affection.
-Idle Thoughts of an Idle Fellow, Jerome K. Jerome

On certain evenings I was mad enough almost to believe in my soul, I felt it so near to escaping from my body.
-Andre Gide, Les Nourritures Terrestres

The idea hovered and shimmered delicately, like a soap bubble, and she dared not even look at it directly in case it burst. But she was familiar with the way of ideas, and she let it shimmer, looking away, thinking about something else.
-The Golden Compass, by Philip Pullman

"Opportunities may come along for you to convert something, something that exists into something that didn't yet, that might be the beginning of it. sometimes you just want to do things your way, want to see for yourself what lies behind the misty curtain."
-Chronicles: Vol. One by Bob Dylan

Our desires cut across one another, and in this confused existence it is rare for happiness to coincide with the desire that clamoured for it.
-Marcel Proust, "Within a Budding Grove"

"People like it when you tell them things, in suitable portions, in a modest, intimate tone, and they they think they know you, but they do not, they know about you, for what they are let in on are facts, not feelings, not what your opinion is about anything at all, not how what has happened to you and how all the decisions you have made have turned you into who you are. What they do is they fill in with their own feelings and opinions and assumptions, and they compose a new life which has precious little to do with yours, and that lets you off the hook. No-one can touch you unless you yourself want them to. You only have to be polite and smile and keep paranoid thoughts at bay, because they will talk about you no matter how much you squirm it is inevitable, and you would do the same thing yourself."
-Out Stealing Horses, by Per Petterson

"If you can look across the distance without wanting to close it up, if you can own your longing in the same way that you own the beauty of that blue that can never be possessed? For something of this longing will, like the blue of distance, only be relocated, not assuaged, by acquisition and arrival, just as the mountains cease to be blue when you arrive among them and the blue instead tints the next beyond. Somewhere in this is the mystery of why tragedies are more beautiful than comedies and why we take a huge pleasure in the sadness of certain songs and stories. Something is always far away."
-Rebecca Solnit, A Field Guide to Getting Lost

I want to mirror your image to its fullest perfection,
never be blind or too old
to uphold your weighty wavering reflection.
I want to unfold.
-Rainer Maria Rilke, I Am Much Too Alone in This World, Yet Not Alone

Your absence has gone through me
Like thread through a needle.
Everything I do is stitched with its color.
-Separation by W.S. Merwin

"I have a tendency to care too much about everything. But I claimed not to care because I had to say something and it was the first thing that came to mind. If I had taken the time to dig deeper, I would've started to cry. And I don't have time to cry. I don't have time to be sad."

She had just realized there were two things that prevent us from achieving our dreams: believing them to be impossible or seeing those dreams made possible by some sudden turn of the wheel of fortune, when you least expected it. For at that moment, all our fears suddenly surface: the fear of setting off along a road heading who knows where, fear of a life full of new challenges, the fear of losing forever everything that is familiar.
People want to change everything and, at the same time, want it all to remain the same.
-The Devil and Miss Prym, Paulo Coelho

"I know that the real things in life, things I remember, the things I turn over in my hands, are not houses, bank accounts, prizes or promotions. What I remember is love - all love - love of this dirt road, this sunrise, a day by the river, the stranger I met in a cafe. Myself, even, which is the hardest thing to love, because love and selfishness are not the same thing. It is easy to be selfish. It is hard to love who I am. No wonder I am surprised if you do."
-Lighthousekeeping, Jeanette Winterson

"'When I was younger, I suffered so much disappointment over your parents' refusal that I thought my heart would burst. But the more I thought of you and wept over you, the deeper and clearer my love became. Suffering has revealed to me the depths of my own heart. What is ordinary love compared to that? It ebbs and flows and is easily swayed. But my love for you has become so deep and strong it will never wane. There are few certainties in this world, but love is one of them.'"
-The Blood of Flowers by Anita Amirrezvani

When you can't bear something but it goes on anyway, the person who survives isn't you anymore; you've changed and become someone else, a new person, the one who did bear it after all.
-Soon I will be Invincible by Austin Grossman

In any case, that's me in the dark. I have designs on you, I'm plotting my sinister crime, my hands are reaching for your neck or perhaps, by mistake, your thigh. You can hear my footsteps approaching, I wear boots and carry a knife, or maybe it's a pearl-handled revolver, in any case I wear boots with very soft soles, you can see the cinematic glow of my cigarette, waxing and waning in the fog of the room, the street, the room, even though I don't smoke. Just remember this, when the scream at last has ended and you've turned on the lights: by the rules of the game, I must always lie.
Now: do you believe me?
-"Murder in the Dark", from Good Bones & Simple Murders by Margaret Atwood

To love autumn as it wants to be loved, to meet it with equal intensity, would kill you. It would break you like a derailed trolley car. An explosion and gold dust falling into your wounds, a warm rain becoming specific. I watched her gold fingers skim my belly. She would lick each stitch and count them with her tongue. She would trace gutters in my legs with her mouth. Maybe I moaned.
~Kate Braverman, The Incantation of Fida K

I want to unfold.
I don't want to stay folded anywhere
Because where I am folded,
There, I am a lie.
-Rainer Maria Rilke

"What stillness in this pre-dawn hour. The air is cold. In all our life of preparation we are unprepared for this new hour filled with emptiness. How thick the darkness behind which hides the animal cry. I know what is there, hidden from my stare. Grief's weeping. Deeper emptiness."
-Joy Kogawa, Obasan

"But in her web she still delights
To weave the mirror's magic sights,
For often through the silent nights
A funeral, with plumes and lights
And music, went to Camelot;
Or when the Moon was overhead,
Came two young lovers lately wed.
"I am half sick of shadows," said
The Lady of Shalott."
-Tennyson's "The Lady of Shalott"

"I was wildly alive and nearly dead at the very same time." - "Assuming The Position"
-Rick Whitaker

Last night I wept. I wept because the process by which I have become woman was painful. I wept because I was no longer a child with achild's blind faith. I wept because my eyes were opened to reality--toHenry's selfishness, June's love of power, my insatiable creativity which must concern itself with others and cannot be sufficient to itself. I wept because I could not believe anymore and I love to believe. I can still love passionately without believing. That means I love humanly. I wept because from now on I will weep less. I wept because I have lost my pain and I am not yet accustomed to its absence.
-Anais Nin

The boundaries of this world are forever shifting- from day to night, joy to sorrow, love to hate and from life itself to death; and who can say at what moment we may suddenly cross over the border, from one state of existence to another, like heat applied to some flammable substance?
I have been given my own ever-changing margins, across which I move, continually and hungrily, like a migrating animal. Now civilized, now untamed; now responsive to decency and human concern, now viciously attuned to the darkest of desires.
-Michael Cox, “The Meaning of Night”

“It made me feel very young to have the dark come after dusk and then remain.”
A Farewell to Arms by Ernest Hemingway

But I have decided not to grow up tame like the others who lay their necks on the threshold waiting for the ball and chain.
-The House on Mango Street, Sandra Cisneros

Be careful of words,
even the miraculous ones.
For the miraculous ones we do our best,
sometimes they swarm like insects
and leave not a sting but a kiss.
They can be good as fingers.
They can be trusty as the rock
you stick your bottom on.
But they can be both daisies and bruises.
Yet I am in love with words.
They are doves falling out of the ceiling.
They are six holy oranges sitting in my lap.
They are the trees, the legs of summer,
and the sun, its passionate face.
Yet often they fail me.
I have so much I want to say,
so many stories, images, proverbs, etc.
But the words aren't good enough,
the wrong ones kiss me.
Sometimes I fly like an eagle
but with the wings of a wren.
But I try to take care
and be gentle to them.
Words and eggs must be handled with care.
Once broken they are impossible
things to repair.
-Words by Anne Sexton

"The wild dogs roam the summer fields just outside of town. Their eyes flash, bright stars in the woods at night and they weave like fire through the dry grass towards the edge of the city, looking for something to kill and eat.
Love is like those wild dogs. If it hunts you down, it will not let you go. And what you can never know from the beginning is how hard or how long you'll love something; how even when it has gone the love you felt will still chase you down, loping like dark flame through your blood."
-Helen Humphreys, Wild Dogs

And we stood like that. The joining of hands is highly underrated in the acts of intimacy. You kiss acquaintances or colleagues, casually to say hello or goodbye. You might even kiss a close friend chastely on the lips. You might quickly hug anyone you know. You might even meet someone at a party, take him home and sleep with him, never to see him or hear from him again. But to join hands and stand holding each other that way, with the electricity of possibilities flowing between you? The tenderness of it, the promise of it, is only something you share with a few people in your life.
-Beautiful Lies by Lisa Unger

"Since my earliest childhood a barb of sorrow has lodged in my heart. As long as it stays I am ironic — if it is pulled out I shall die."
-Søren Kierkegaard

That's the way it is. If you believe in something your very belief renders you unqualified to do it. Your earnestness will come across. Your passion will show. Your enthusiasm will make everyone nervous. And your naivety will irritate. Which means that you will become suspect. Which means you will be prone to disillusionment. Which means that you will not be able to sustain your belief in the face of all the piranha fish which nibble away at your idea and your faith, 'till only the skeleton of your dream is left. Which means that you have to become a fanatic, a fool, a joke, an embarrassment. The world - which is to say the powers that be - would listen to your ardent ideas with a stiff smile on its face, then put up impossible obstacles, watch you finally give up your cherished idea, having mangled it beyond recognition, and after you slope away in profound discouragement it will take up your idea, dust it down, give it a new spin, and hand it over to someone who doesn't believe in it at all.
-In Arcadia by Ben Okri

He was playing a character I had invented, which is somewhat telling. In desperate love, it's always like this, isn't it? In desperate love, we always invent the characters of our own partners, demanding that they be what we need of them, and then feeling devastated when they refuse to perform the role we created in the first place.
-Eat, Pray, Love by Elizabeth Gilbert

"Be not the slave of your own past. Plunge into the sublime seas, dive deep and swim far, so you shall come back with self-respect, with new power, with an advanced experience that shall explain and overlook the old."
-Ralph Waldo Emerson

"You are not superior just because you see the world in an odious light."
-Vicomte De Chateaubriand

"That long-drawn, wavering howl has, for all its fearful resonance, some inherent sadness in it, as if the beasts would love to be less beastly if only they knew how and never cease to mourn their own condition. There is a vast melancholy in the canticles of the wolves, melancholy infinite as the forest, endless as these long nights of winter, ad yet that ghastly sadness, that mourning for their own, irremediable appetites, can never move the heart, for not one phrase in it hints at the possibility of redemption; grace could not come to the wolf from its own despair, only through some external mediator, so that sometimes, the beast will look as if he half welcomes the knife that dispatches him."
-from "The Company of Wolves" part of the collection The Bloody Chamber
by Angela Carter

Sometimes you hung up the phone and felt the bruising of your heart. It hurt now and it would hurt more later. The conversation was too unsatisfying to continue and yet you couldn't stand for it to end.
-Forever In Blue, Ann Brashares

Despite your best efforts, people will get hurt when it's time for them to be hurt.
-Norwegian Wood, Haruki Murakami

"I'm an outlaw, not a hero. I never intended to rescue you. We're our own dragon as well as our own heroes, and we have to rescue ourselves from ourselves. "
-Still Life with Woodpecker by Tom Robbins

"If a violin string can ache, then I was that string."
-Lolita, Vladimir Nabokov

"Life might play tricks, but it demanded that you endured them; that was a basic duty you faced every morning when you awoke. If your dreams turned to dross, if your family banished you, if you lost the person you loved, and all hope of finding your heart's true resting place... you went on.
But God, it hurt."
-"Homeland", John Jakes

When you are lonely, writing can help keep you company. It is also a form of self-compensation, a way of making up for things -- as opposed to making things up -- that did not quite happen.
-Geoff Dyer, Yoga for People Who Can't Be Bothered to Do It

The eye is always caught by light, but shadows have more to say.
-Mirror, Mirror by Gregory Maguire

"For what is it to die, but to stand naked in the wind and to melt into the sun?
And what is to cease breathing, but to free the breath from its restless tides, that it may rise and expand and seek God unencumbered?
Only when you drink from the river of silence shall you indeed sing.
And when the earth shall claim your limbs, then shall you truly dance."
-Kahlil Gibran, The Prophet

"When you're young, you think it's going to be solved by love. But it never is. Being close - as close as you can get - to another person only makes clear the impassable distance between you."
Love, Max would say, his gnarled toes breaking the surface, love is the goal of the species. Not shtuping. Shtuping you can do anytime. It's love that's not so easy to find, lowering the left foot as the right floated up in a regiment of European bathhouse caslisthenics.
He put the paperweight down and looked at Ray. "I don't know. If being in love only made people more lonely, why would everyone want it so much?"
"Because of the illusion. You fall in love, it's intoxicating, and for a little while you feel like you've actually become one with the other person. Merged souls, and so on. You think you'll never be lonely again. Only it doesn't last and soon you realize you can only get so close, and you end up brutally disappointed, more alone than ever, because the illusion - the hope you'd held on to all those years - has been shattered."
"But see, the incredible thing about people is that we forget," Ray continued. "Time passes and somehow the hope creeps back and sooner or later someone else comes along and we think this is the one. And the whole thing starts all over again. We go through our lives like that, and either we just accept the lesser relationship - it may not be total understanding, but it's pretty good - or we keep trying for that perfect union, trying and failing, leaving behind us a trail of broken hearts, our own included. In the end, we die as alone as we were born, having struggled to understand others, to make ourselves understood, but having failed in what we once imagined was possible."
"People really want that, what did you say, merging souls? Total union?"
"Yes. Or at least they think they do. Mostly what they want, I think, is to feel known."
-Man Walks into a Room by Nicole Krauss

Love opened a mortal wound.
In agony, I worked the blade
to make it deeper. Please,
I begged, let death come quick.
Wild, distracted, sick,
I counted, counted
all the ways love hurt me.
One life, I thought—a thousand deaths.
Blow after blow, my heart
couldn't survive this beating.
Then—how can I explain it?—
I came to my senses. I said,
Why do I suffer? What lover
ever had so much pleasure
—Sor Juana Inés de la Cruz

"...Sometimes the unrequited must demand reparations, that love can be a mean and spiteful process, that sometimes one loses patience with love. So, when the nerves and guts have seemingly been packed away, sewn in and cleaned up so as not to make all the innocent bystanders uncomfortable, the carrier of this love becomes heavy with a toxic lump that grows, slowly and steadily, into a fierce ball of scarred tissue.
Located two ribs below the heart, it is called hate."
-Ibi Kaslik, Skinny

"I Wanna Hear a Poem" by Steve Colman
I wanna hear a poem
where ideas
kiss similes so deeply
metaphors get jealous,
where the subject matters
so much
that adjectives start holding
pro-noun rallies at city hall.

"If you don't go after what you want, you'll never have it. If you don't ask, the answer is always no. If you don't step forward, you're always in the same place." - Nora Roberts

"And when we kiss, this city, this almost city recedes in flame and the sun's ghost becomes our breath. I have waited so long and wanted it so bad and I'll die remembering the taste.... We are all hands and lips and when finally it ends I want to fall to my knees in the water and beg and scream, not for another kiss but for life to always be like this, bursting open, feeling every second with an atom-smashing heart."
-"Grab On to Me Tightly as if I Knew the Way" by Bryan Charles

"None of us really changes over time; we only become more fully what we are." -Lestat
-The Queen of the Damned by Anne Rice

And then the day came,
when the risk
to remain tight
in a bud
was more painful
than the risk
it took
to Blossom
-Risk, Anaïs Nin

"Her beauty, Mallinson, like all other beauty in the world, lies at the mercy of those who do not know how to value it."
- James Hilton, Lost Horizon

“The answer is never the answer. What's really interesting is the mystery. If you seek the mystery instead of the answer, you'll always be seeking. I've never seen anybody really find the answer -- they think they have, so they stop thinking. But the job is to seek mystery, evoke mystery, plant a garden in which strange plants grow and mysteries bloom. The need for mystery is greater than the need for an answer.”
-Ken Kesey

There it is; the light across the water. Your story. Mine. His. It has to be seen to be believed. And it has to be heard. In the endless babble of narrative, in spite of the daily noise, the story waits to be heard.
-Jeanette Winterson, Lighthousekeeping

Some people say that the best stories have no words. They weren't brought up to Lighthousekeeping. It is true that words drop away, and that the important things are often left unsaid. The important things are learned in faces, in gestures, not in our locked tongues. The true things are too big or too small, or in any case is always the wrong size to fit in the template called language.
-Jeanette Winterson, Lighthousekeeping

'Self-hatred is the only hatred in the world. It merely finds convenient decoys.'
-Psychopath, Keith Ablow

"...we all have ideas of how we'd like to be, but must finally see we're not as brave as we had hoped."
-Andrew Sean Greer - How It Was for Me

"Real love always has something hidden -- some loss or boredom or tiny hate that we would never tell a soul. Those among you who have been rejected or ignored, you'll know what I mean. Because when she comes to you at last, though joy may burst in wet seeds inside you, still there's a bitterness that it took so long. Why did she wait? You can never quite forgive. And when she is in your arms at last, when she is murmuring your name, kissing your neck with a passion you once thought impossible, you don't feel just one thing. There is relief, of course, relief that all you imagined has come true, but there is also triumph. You have won her heart -- and not from any rivals. You have won it from her."
- Andrew Sean Greer - The Confessions of Max Tivoli

'“If you want a red rose,” said the Tree, “you must build it out of music by moonlight, and stain it with your own heart’s-blood. You must sing to me with your breast against a thorn. All night long you must sing to me, and the thorn must pierce your heart, and your life-blood must flow into my veins, and become mine.”'
-Oscar Wilde's The Nightingale and the Rose

"Even when I'm dead, I'll swim through the Earth,
like a mermaid of the soil, just to be next to your bones."
— Jeffrey McDaniel

"Your numbness," my mother cries softly, "is something perhaps you cannot help. It is what the world has done to you. But your coldness. That is what you do to the world."
-Lorrie Moore, Self-Help

"We are all aware that the woman whose face we have before our eyes more constantly than light itself, since even with our eyes shut we never cease for an instant to adore her beautiful eyes, her beautiful nose, to accept opportunities of seeing them again - that this woman who to us is unique might well have been another if we had been in a different town from one in which we met her, if we had explored other quarters of the town, if we had frequented a diferent salon. Unique, we suppose? She is legion. And yet, she is compact and indestructible in our loving eyes, irreplaceable for a long time to come by any other. The truth is that this woman has only raised to life by a sort of magic countless elements of tenderness existing in us already in a fragmentary state, which she has assmebled, joined together, effacing every gap between them, and it is we ourselves who by gigving her her features have supplied all the solid matterof the beloved object. Whence it arises that even if we are only one among a thousand to her and perhaps the last of them all, to us she is the only one, the one towards who our whole life gravitates."
-The Fugitive, Marcel Proust

No, it was not her lot to take life lightly. The more sensitive a person turns out to be, the harder it is for him to establish a close relationship, even with a person much like himself; it takes scores, even hundreds of similarities and coincidental circumstances. Each additional coincidence brings them only a fraction closer, but one element of discord can pull them apart at once. Such disagreements always come to the fore very quickly and sharply. There was no one of whom she could ask: What am I do? How can I live?
-The Cancer Ward, Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn

Everyone has the obligation to ponder well his own specific traits of character. He must also regulate them adequately and not wonder whether someone else's traits might suit him better. The more definitely his own a man's character is, the better it fits him.

"For ever and ever, we say, when we are young, or in our prayers. Twice, we say it, Old One, do we not? For ever and ever... so that a thing may be for ever, a life or a love or a quest, and yet begin again, and be for ever just as before. And any ending that may seem to come is not truly an ending, but an illusion. For Time does not die, Time has neither beginning nor end, and so nothing can end or die that has once had a place in Time."
-Silver on the Tree, Susan Cooper

"To crave and to have are as like as a thing and its shadow. For when does a berry break upon the tongue as sweetly as when one longs to taste it, and when is the taste refracted into so many hues and savors of ripeness and earth, and when do our sense know any thing so utterly as when we lack it? And here again is a foreshadowing--the world will be made whole. For to wish for a hand on one's hair is all but to feel it. So whatever we may lose, very craving gives it back to us again. Though we dream and hardly know it, longing, like an angel, fosters us, smooths our hair, and brings us wild strawberries."
-Housekeeping, Marilynne Robinson

What I am trying to say is that we are not exceptional in our beginnings, we are only exceptional in our stubbornnness, in this thrust towards growth which is almost a natural state. There are obstacles, but our intelligence and our awareness enable us to recognize and confront them. We know them. All of us have at some time or another become aware of them: the religious beliefs, the family beliefs, the oppression by the family, the very dogmatic form we have given to marriage. I believe in marriage but not the dogma that we've made out of it, the rigid dogma. You see we make everything rigid and it's all out of fear; we make these rigidities, and then we can't live in them and we suffocate in them. We make different patterns of lives and to get security we give up our freedom.
-From "A Woman Speaks" by Anaïs Nin

Because writers remember everything, Paul. Especially the hurts. Strip a writer to the buff, point to the scars, and he'll tell you the story of each small one. From the big ones, you get novels, not amnesia. A little talent is a nice thing to have if you want to be a writer, but the only real requirement is that ability to remember the story of every scar.
-From Misery by Stephen King

"The most important things are the hardest things to say. They are the things words diminish- words shrink things that seemed limitless inside your head to no more than living size when they're brought out... And you may make revelations that cost you dearly only to have people look at you in a funny way, not understanding what you're said at all, or why it was so important you almost cried while you were saying it. That's the worst- the secret stays locked within not for want of a teller but for want of an understanding ear."
-Stephen King

'The thing about believing is that it's dangerous. The world can turn upside down in an instant, and just when you think you're on top of everything, you're under it. Believing in something, someone, is hard. Sometimes when you let yourself fall too far, suddenly it's gone.'
-Dream Factory, Brad Barkley and Heather Hepler

I too want to be important. By being different. And these girls are all the same.
-Sylvia Plath's Journals

I love you because you are me...my writing, my desire to be many lives. I will be a little god in my small way. At home on my desk is the best story I've ever written. How can I tell Bob that my happiness streams from having wrenched a piece out of my life, a piece of hurt and beauty, and transformed it to typewritten words on paper? How can he know I am justifying my life, my keen emotion, my feeling, by turning it into print?
-Sylvia Plath's Journals

The rose shadows said that they loved the sun, but that they also loved the dark, where their roots grew through the lightless mystery of the earth. The roses said: You do not have to choose.
-Sunshine , by Robin McKinley

You can love someone so much, he thought. But you can never love people as much as you can miss them.
-An Abundance of Katherines by John Green

"Then I wanted to go into that water. I wanted it so badly that my mouth stung like salt and my skin tingled and I stood up and ran down to the shore. I wanted to go into the waves and find the things the boy saw. I knew that it was better than I was, than what my life was. It was something deep and far and soothing and dark and bright. It was without pain. It was like falling into the surging liquid herd of waves and becoming nothing and everything at once.."
-Francesca Lia Block, Echo

"Loneliness does not come from having no people about one, but from being unable to communicate the things that seem important to oneself, or from holding certain views which others find inadmissible."
Carl Gustav Jung

The cure for loneliness, I have come to understand, is not more socializing. It's achieving and maintaining close friendships. The trust that characterizes that kind of friendship allows one to be vulnerable, to discuss problems that resist a solution, for example, without having to risk being judged or dismissed.
-Barry Lopez, "Cold Scapes"

Crossing the street, I was hit head-on by a brutal loneliness. I felt dark and hollow. Abandoned, unnoticed, forgotten, I stood on the sidewalk, a nothing, a gatherer of dust. People hurried past me. And everyone who walked by was happier than I. I felt the old envy. I would have given anything to be one of them.
-Nicole Krauss

"It's just ... I don't always say what I feel."
"Why not?"
"Because the truth sometimes hurts," I said.
"Yeah," he said. "So do lies, though."
-Just Listen, Sarah Dessen

"You're pretty tough."
"No, I'm not."
"Yes, you are. You're tough."
"No, I'm not. I'm weak. And that's why I pretend to be tough. If I let myself be weak, inside myself, there'd be nothing left of me after a while. I think people shouldn't be too easy on themselves. I need to be tough on myself because I'm weak, that's all."
-Kamikaze Girls by Novala Takemoto

How can I keep my soul in me, so that
it doesn't touch your soul?
-rainer maria rilke

"The bad thing about falling to pieces is that it hurts. The good thing about it is that once you're lying there in shards you've got nothing left to protect, and so have no reason not to be honest."
-David James Duncan, River Teeth

"I wander from one room to another, downstairs and up again, feeling like a songbird whose wings have been clipped and who is hurling himself in utter darkness against the bars of his cage. "Go outside, laugh, and take a breath of fresh air," a voice cries within me, but I don't even feel a response any more, I go and lie on the divan and sleep, to make the time pass more quickly, and the stillness and the terrible fear, because there is no way of killing them."
-"The Diary Of A Young Girl" Anne Frank

“I understood wanting to forget. Things that made you remember
cut like pieces of glass. A song, a memory, a blade of grass, a white
dress, a dream, all of it as painful as the deepest wound.”
-Green Angel by Alice Hoffman

Let me tell you this: if you meet a loner, no matter what they tell you, it's not because they enjoy solitude. It's because they have tried to blend into the world before, and people continue to disappoint them.
-My Sisters Keeper by Jodi Picoult

I can pinpoint it to that exact time when my heart hardened into an impenetrable block of ice, impervious to anything but the most superficial scratch, leaving me able to shed an occasional tear at the melodrama of others' lives, but otherwise permanently embedded in emotional permafrost. My heart had been hermetically sealed against deeper cuts.
-Brilliant by Marne Davis Kellogg

Was I loving him? Oh god, I hope not. I wanted to love someone better than I was, not someone worse. I needed someone to lift me up, raise my sights, make me a better person, not appeal to my baser and more nefarious instincts.
-Brilliant by Marne Davis Kellogg

"We are always more afraid than we wish to be, but we can always be braver than we expect."
-Lord of Chaos, Robert Jordan

It's a wonder I haven't abandoned all my ideals, they seem so absurd and impractical. Yet I cling to them because I still believe, in spite of everything, that people are truly good at heart.
-Diary of Anne Frank

"One gets so used to one's own horrors, one forgets how they must seem to other people"
Diane Setterfield ~ The Thirteenth Tale

Make me into something I'm not
I don't want to be this person anymore
I can't keep up with all the lies ..my secrets are all i have left
i'd give anything to change who i am. to make myself into the person i want to be
..the person i need to be. i can't take all this regret, it's eating me up inside
if only you knew i'd give anything; absolutely anything
to be that person for you.

It never failed to amaze her, the sudden sharpness of that pain as it stabbed through the cotton batting of time. A part of her wished fervently it would dull, and another part of her hoped that it never would. The endless cycle of guilt: the need to escape it and the equally desperate need to cling to it.
-Ashes to Ashes, Tami Hoag

And when I was young I didn't understand, but now, I know, how absence can be present, like a damaged nerve, like a dark bird.
-Audrey Niffenegger, The Time Traveler's Wife

"No one had told her this would happen, that her girlishness would give way to the solid force of wifehood, motherhood. The choices available were all imperfect. If you chose to be with someone, you often wanted to be alone. If you chose to be alone, you often felt the unbearable need for another body - not necessarily for sex, but just to rub your foot, to sit across the table, to drop his things around the room in a way that was maddening but still served as a reminder that he was there."
-THE POSITION, Meg Wolitzer

"Restless. As if you haven't really met yourself yet. As if you'd passed yourself once in the fog, and your heart leapt- 'Ah! There I am! I've been missing that piece!' But it happens too fast, and then that part of you disappears into the fog again. And you spend the rest of your days looking for it."
-The Sweet Far Thing by Libba Bray

Because I had and have and shall always have only one beau, only one beast, only one sorrow, only one joy.
-Vladimir Nabokov

"If you saw her in these moments, you might think she was collecting her thoughts in order to go forward. But I see it another way: Her mind is being overwhelmed by two processes that must simultaneously proceed at full steam. One is to deal with and live in the present world. The other is to re-experience and mourn something that happened long ago. It is as though her lightness pulls her toward heaven, but the extra gravity around her keeps her earthbound."
-The Pleasure Of My Company By Steve Martin

So I must live unloved merely because I love too much.
-"On the Preparation and Employment of Love Philtres" in The Second Thoughts of an Idle Fellow (sequel to The Idle Thoughts of an Idle Fellow) by Jerome K. Jerome

Tonight I can write the saddest lines
To think that I do not have her.
To feel that I have lost her
To hear the immense night, still more immense without her
And the verse falls to the soul, like dew to the pasture.
What does it matter if my love could not keep her.
The night is shattered and she is not with me.
This is all.
In the distance, my soul is not satisfied that it has lost her
My sight searches for her as though to go to her.
My heart looks for her and she is not with me
The same night, whitening the same trees.
We of that time are no longer the same.
-Tonight I Can Write the Saddest Lines, Pablo Neruda

'I put my hands over her ears and tip her head back, and kiss her, and try to put my heart into hers, for safekeeping, in case I lose it again.'
-Audrey Niffenegger, 'The Time Traveler's Wife'

"People who have only good experiences aren't very interesting. They may be content, and happy after a fashion, but they aren't very deep. It may seem a misfortune now, and it makes things difficult, but well--it's easy to feel all the happy, simple stuff. Not that happiness is necessarily simple. But I don't think you're going to have a life like that, and I think you'll be the better for it. The difficult thing is to not be overwhelmed by the bad patches. You must not let them defeat you. You must see them as a gift--a cruel gift, but a gift nonetheless."
-Someday This Pain Will Be Useful to You by Peter Cameron

"I can listen no longer in silence. I must speak to you by such means as are within my reach. You pierce my soul. I am half agony, half hope. Tell me not that I am too late, that such precious feelings are gone for ever. I offer myself to you again with a heart even more your own, than when you broke it eight years and a half ago. Dare not say that a man forgets sooner than a woman, that his love has an earlier death. I have loved none but you. Unjust I may have been, weak and resentful I have been, but never inconstant."
--Jane Austen, Persuasion

"Love is where you find it. I think it is foolish to go looking for it, and I think it can often be poisonous.
I wish that people who are conventionally supposed to love each other would say to each other, when they fight, "Please - a little less love, and a little more common decency."
- Prologue to Slapstick by Kurt Vonnegut

"He did that a lot lately, giving non sequiturs in lieu of answers. Was he falling out of love? Or had he never been in love? Lately, what she felt when she was around him were twinges, pangs, aches, cracks, rips, and sudden hollows. His every response, or lack of one, hurt her."

I live my life in growing orbits
which move out over the things of the world.
Perhaps I can never achieve the last
but that will be my attempt.
I am circling around God, around the ancient tower,
and I have been circling for a thousand years,
and still I don’t know if I am a falcon, or a storm
or a great song.
-Ranier Maria Rilke

At the heart of all beauty lies something inhuman, and these hills, the softness of the sky, the outline of these trees at this very minute lose the illusory meaning with which we had clothed them, henceforth more remote than a lost paradise. The primitive hostility of the world rises up to face us across millennia.
For a second we cease to understand it because for centuries we have understood in it solely the images and designs that we had attributed to it beforehand, because henceforth we lack the power to make use of that artifice. The world evades us because it becomes itself again. That stage scenery masked by habit becomes again what it is.
-Albert Camus The Myth of Sisyphus

Memories are killing. So you must not think of certain things, or those that are dear to you, or rather you must think of them, for if you don’t there is the danger of finding them, in your mind, little by little. That is to say, you must think of them for a while, a good while, every day several times a day, until they sink for ever in the mud. That’s an order.
-Samuel Beckett, The Expelled

But one kiss levitates above all the others. The
intersection of function and desire. The I do kiss.
The I'll love you through a brick wall kiss.
Even when I'm dead, I'll swim through the Earth,
like a mermaid of the soil, just to be next to your bones.
-The Archipelago Of Kisses, Jeffrey McDaniel

"Whether or not you find your own way, you're bound to find some way. If you happen to find my way, please return it, as it was lost years ago."
-The Whether Man, in Norton Juster's The Phantom Tollbooth

Indeed, they did love her. Perhaps we all give the best of our hearts uncritically- to those who hardly think about us in return.
-The Once and Future King, T.H. White

I want to
let her know
that all the nights
beside her
even the useless
were things
ever splendid
-from confession by Bukowski

"For one thing, it made me appear mysterious, standing aloof in a bay window, smoking a cigarette with an air of quiet wisdom while all around me the party screamed and giggled. Some quite pleasant people, Harrison Mack among them, reasoned that I must have answers that they lacked, and sought me out; women thought me charmingly shy, and sometimes stopped at nothing to "penetrate the disdainful shell of my fear," as one of their number put it. Often as not, it was they who got penetrated."
-The Floating Opera, by John Barth

I`ll always have to wonder whether I`m truly wanted or whether I`ve just been settled for.
- A Great And Terrible Beauty

Mornings I still
reach for you before
opening my eyes.
This weight on the other side of the bed
is only books, not you. What
I said I loved more than you.
Thought these mornings
I wish books loved back.
"Bay Poem from Berkely", from Loose Women by Sandra Cisneros

Emotionally, I was withdrawn from the objective world; my desires floated loosely within the walls of my consciousness, contained and controlled.
-Black Boy by Richard Wright

I did not act in this fashion deliberately; I did not prefer this kind of relationship with people. I wanted a life in which there was a constant oneness of feeling with others, in which the basic emotions of life were shared, in which common memory formed a common past, in which collective hope reflected a national future. But I knew that no such thing was possible in my environment. The only ways in which I felt that my feelings could go outward without fear of rude rebuff or searing reprisal was in writing or reading, and to me they were ways of living.
-Black Boy by Richard Wright

It's hard to be the one who stays.
Each moment that I wait feels like a year, an eternity. Each moment is as slow and transparent as glass. Through each moment I can see infinite moments lined up, waiting. Why has he gone where I cannot follow?
-Audrey Niffenegger, The Time Traveler's Wife

I have heard the mermaids singing, each to each.
I do not think that they will sing to me.
I have seen them riding seaward on the waves
Combing the white hair of the waves blown back
When the wind blows the water white and black.
We have lingered in the chambers of the sea
By sea-girls wreathed with seaweed red and brown
Till human voices wake us, and we drown.
-The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock by T.S. Eliot

‘One day, tens of millions of years from now, someone will find me rusted into the mud of a world they have never seen, and when they crumble me between their fingers, it will be you they find.’
-The Stone Gods by Jeanette Winterson

"Those who cannot feel the littleness of great things in themselves are apt to overlook the greatness of little things in others."
-The Book of Tea,Kakuzo Okakura

"She says nothing at all, but simply stares upward into the dark sky and watches, with sad eyes, the slow dance of infinite stars."
-Stardust by Neil Gaiman

Sometimes, kids want you to hurt the way they hurt.
-For One More Day, Mitch Albom

"Do you know, I had a dream an hour ago. I lay down for a catnap and in this dream you and I, Montag, got into a furious debate on books. You towered with rage, yelled quotes at me. I calmly parried every thrust. Power, I said. And you, quoting Dr. Johnson, said 'Knowledge is more than equivalent to force!" and I said, "Well, Dr. Johnson also said, dear boy, that "He is no qise man that will quit a certainty for an uncertainty."' Stick with the firemen, Montag. All else is dreary chaos.
"Don't listen," whispered Faber. "He's trying to confuse. He's slippery. Watch out!"
Beatty chuckled. "And you said quoting, "Truth will come to light, murder will not be hid long!" And I cried in good humor, 'Oh God, he speaks only of his horse!' And 'The Devil can cite scripture for his purpose.' And you yelled, 'This age thinks better of a gilded fool than of a threadbare saint in wisdom's school!' and I whispered gently 'The dignity of truth is lost with much protesting.' And you screamed, 'Carcasses bleed at the sight of the murderer!' And I said, patting your hand 'What, do I give you trench mouth?' And you shrieked, 'Knowledge is power!' and 'A dwarf on a giant's shoulders sees the farthest of the two!' and I summed my side up with rare serenity in, 'The folly of mistaking a metaphor for a proof, a torrent of verbiage for a spring of capital truths, and oneself as an oracle, is inborn in us, Mr. Valery once said."
~Ray Bradbury,Farenheit 451

The thing about a story is that you dream it as you tell it, hoping that others might then dream along with you, and in this way memory and imagination and language combine to make spirits in the head. There is the illusion of aliveness.
-Tim O'Brien, The Things They Carried

It’s a hard thing to explain to somebody who hasn’t felt it, but the presence of death and danger has a way of bringing you fully awake. It makes things vivid. When you’re afraid, really afraid, you see things you never saw before, you pay attention to the world. You make close friends. You become part of a tribe and you share the same blood- you give it together, you take it together.
-Tim O'Brien, The Things They Carried

"Sometimes you cannot believe what you see, you have to believe what you feel. And if you are ever going to have other people trust you, you must feel that you can trust them, too- even when you're in the dark. Even when you're falling."
-tuesday's with Morrie, Mitch Albom

I crave your mouth, your voice, your hair,
Silent and starving, I prowl through the streets
Bread does not nourish me, dawn disrupts me, all day
I hunt for the liquid measure of your steps.
-Pablo Neruda

I wish a wild sea-fellow would come down the glittering shingle,
A soulless neckar, with winking seas in his eyes
And falling waves in his arms, and the lost soul's kiss
On his lips: I long to be soulless, I tingle
To touch the sea in the last surprise
Of fiery coldness, to be gone in a lost soul's bliss.
-"Tarantella" by D.H. Lawrence

Have you ever been in love? Horrible, isn't it? It makes you so vulnerable. It opens your chest and it opens your heart and it means someone can get inside you and mess you up. You build up all these defenses. You build up this whole armor, for years, so nothing can hurt you, then one stupid person, no different from any other stupid person, wanders into your stupid life. You give them a piece of you. They don't ask for it. They do something dumb one day like kiss you, or smile at you, and then your life isn't your own anymore. Love takes hostages. It gets inside you. It eats you out and leaves you crying in the darkness, so a simple phrase like 'Maybe we should just be friends' or 'How very perceptive' turns into a glass splinter working its way into your heart. It hurts. Not just in the imagination. Not just in the mind. It's a soul-hurt, a body-hurt, a real gets-inside-you-and-rips-you-apart pain. Nothing should be able to do that. Especially not love. I hate love.
-In Love, Neil Gaiman

A real human is somebody who feels and who expresses his or her feelings. This may sound easy. It isn't.
A lot of people think or believe or know what they feel---but that's thinking or believing or knowing: not feeling. And being real is feeling---not just knowing or believing or thinking.
Almost anybody can learn to think or believe or know, but it's very difficult to learn to feel. Why? Because whenever you think or you believe or you know, you're a lot of other people: but the moment you feel, you're nobody - but - yourself.
To be nobody - but -yourself-- in a world which is doing its best, night and day, to make you everybody else--means to fight the hardest battle which any human being can fight; and never stop fighting.
As for communicating nobody-but-yourself to others, that means working just a little harder than anybody who isn't real can possibly imagine. Why?
Because nothing is quite as easy as just being just like somebody else. We all of us do exactly this nearly all of the time--and whenever we do it, we are not real.
If, at the end of your first ten or fifteen years of fighting and working and feeling, you find you've loved just once with a nobody-but-yourself heart, you''ll be very lucky indeed.
And so my advice to all young people who wish to become real is: do something easy, like dreaming of freedom--unless you're ready to commit yourself to feel and work and fight till you die.
-A poet's advice by ee cummings

"i mean that to be in a relationship with God is to be loved purely and furiously. And a person who thinks himself unlovable cannot be in a relationship with God because he can't accept who God is, a Being that is love. We learn that we are lovable or unlovable from other people," Paul says. "That is why God tells us so many times to love each other"
-blue like jazz by donald miller

I need not hate any man; he cannot hurt me. I need not flatter any man; he has nothing to give me.
-Virginia Woolf, "A Room of One's Own"

What was it about this unlovable century that convinced us we were, despite everything, eminently lovable as a people, as a species? What made us think that anyone who fails to love us is damaged, lacking, malfunctioning in some way? And particularly if they replace us with a god, or a weeping madonna, or the face of Christ in a ciabatta roll - then we call them crazy. Deluded. Regressive. We are so convinced of the goodness of ourselves, and the goodness of our love, we cannot bear to believe that there might be something more worthy of love than us, more worthy of worship. Greeting cards routinely tell us everybody deserves love. No. Everybody deserves clean water. Not everybody deserves love all the time.
-White Teeth, Zadie Smith

"I don't need the sleep as much as I need the escape. At this point in my life, nothingness is a lot better than somethingness."
-Go Ask Alice by anonymous

"She didn't know if she was running away from something or running to something, but she admitted that deep in her heart, she wanted to go home."
-Go Ask Alice by anonymous

I've often lost myself in order to find the burn that keeps everything awake.
-Blind Panaroma of New York, Federico Garcia Lorca

"What he would say he cannot say to this woman whose openness is like a wound, whose youth is not mortal yet. He cannot alter what he loves most in her, her lack of compromise, where the romance of the poems she loves still sits with ease in the real world"
-The English Patient by Michael Ondaatje

"This was the time in her life that she fell upon books as the only door out of her cell. They became half her world."
-The English Patient by Michael Ondaatje

"Moments before sleep are when she feels most alive, leaping across fragments of the day, bringing each moment into the bed with her like a child with schoolbooks and pencils"
-The English Patient by Michael Ondaatje

I was freed forever of the desire to possess another person or the temptation to ever to belong to anyone.
-Eva Luna; Isabel Allende

Now I know the bitter tears,
The dull despair, the frantic rages,
The sleep-destroying hopes and fears
Of fish in bowls and birds in cages.
- “After Two Months in Prison” by Horacio de la Costa, S.J.

“It's the people you are close to, the ones who love you, the ones who have seen your heart, who have touched your soul- to them, it is obvious that something is wrong or missing. Your heart and soul are missing. They feel it. It hurts them. It kills them.”
-Elizabeth Wurtzel

"You know what I think?" she says. "That people's memories are maybe the fuel they burn to stay alive. Whether those memories have any actual importance or not, it doesn't matter as far as the maintenance of life is concerned. They're all just fuel. Advertising fillers in the newspaper, philosophy books, dirty pictures in a magazine, a bundle of ten-thousand-yen bills: when you feed 'em to the fire, they're all just paper. To the fire, they're nothing but scraps of paper. It's the exact same thing. Important memories, not-so-important memories, totally
useless memories: there's no distinction- they're all just fuel.
"You know, I think if I didn't have that fuel, if I didn't have these memory drawers inside me, I would've snapped a long time ago. I would've curled up in a ditch somewhere and died. It's because I can pull out of the drawers when I have to- the important ones and the useless ones- that I can go on living this nightmare of a life."
- After Dark, by Haruki Murakami

The only hope, or else despair
Lies in the choice of pyre or pyre -
To be redeemed from fire by fire.
Who then devised the torment? Love.
Love is the unfamiliar Name
Behind the hands that wove
The intolerable shirt of flame
Which human power cannot remove.
We only live, only suspire
Consumed by either fire or fire.
-(T.S. Eliot, Four Quartets)

I'm actually not absolutely certain that my story is life-changing or earth-shattering, but I know that the words are collecting at the tips of my fingers and that if I don't shake them out over the keyboard they could go backwards and form word clots around my heart. Word clots are worse than blood clots -- because blood clots more or less kill you as soon as they reach a vital area in your body, but word clots just stay, occasionally giving you heartburn with all the things you could have said but didn't.
- "You are here" by Meenakshi Reddy Madhavan

When it comes to dealing with emotions, there are no tired and true answers. One is not responsible for one's emotions. They are intangibles, without substance.
-Sea Gypsy, Fern Michaels
Current Mood: tiredtired
Bloody Demise of a Fallen Dream
19 November 2006 @ 04:46 pm
To write a poem is not painful, and yet after hours are spent on it, polishing and retouching, there is a certain touch of despair mingled with our other feelings that indicates the lack of perfect, undoubted satisfaction, a certain self-reproach because the lines do not carry the entire beauty of the sentiment.
-The Early Diary of Anaïs Nin, Volume Two, Anaïs Nin

I would like to watch you sleeping,
which may not happen.
I would like to watch you,
sleeping. I would like to sleep
with you, to enter
your sleep as its smooth dark wave
slides over my head
and walk with you through that lucent
wavering forest of bluegreen leaves
with its watery sun & three moons
towards the cave where you must descend,
towards your worst fear
I would like to give you the silver
branch, the small white flower, the one
word that will protect you
from the grief at the center
of your dream, from the grief
at the center. I would like to follow
you up the long stairway
again & become
the boat that would row you back
carefully, a flame
in two cupped hands
to where your body lies
beside me, and you enter
it as easily as breathing in
I would like to be the air
that inhabits you for a moment
only. I would like to be that unnoticed
and that necessary.
-Margaret Atwood

I have remembered beauty in the night,
Against black silences I waked to see
A shower of sunlight over Italy
And green Ravello dreaming on her height;
I have remembered music in the dark,
The clean swift brightness of a fugue of Bach's,
And running water singing on the rocks
When once in English woods I heard a lark.
But all remembered beauty is no more
Than a vague prelude to the thought of you --
You are the rarest soul I ever knew,
Lover of beauty, knightliest and best;
My thoughts seek you as waves that seek the shore,
And when I think of you, I am at rest.
-Love Songs, Sara Teasdale

"One man scorned and covered with scars still strove with his last ounce of courage to reach the unreachable stars; and the world was better for this."
-Cervantes, Don Quixote

"She had an animal sense that vulnerability is dangerous."
-"Suicide Blonde" Darcey Steinke.

"After so many broken hearts, the really bloody kind - I've decided it's better to rely on memories. I sift mine, refine them, till they are like jewels in a black velvet bag."
-"Suicide Blonde" Darcey Steinke

"The things that link us deepest, we can't feel. Except if they're taken from us."
-Foxfire, Joyce Carol Oates

"You mustn't be afraid of the dark," he said, gently grasping my arm and making me shudder. "Night is purer than day; it is better for thinking and loving and dreaming. At night everything is more intense, more true. The echo of words that have been spoken during the day takes on a whole new and deeper meaning. The tragedy of man is that he doesn't know how to distinguish between day and night. He says things at night that should only be said by day."
-Weisel, Dawn

"It does no hit you until later. The fact that you were essentially dead does not register until you begin to come alive. Frostbite does not hurt until it starts to thaw. First it is numb. Then a shock of pain rips through the body. And then, every winter after, it aches.
And every season since is winter, and I do still ache."
-Marya Hornbacher "Wasted"

Words are soldiers filing into
the narrow places of our daily distress,
fighting for us so fiercely
that when one falls another is ready
to stand and be recognized.
-John Fuller, Words

"Something about seeing something so beautiful in the middle of so much pain, made me realize that I can still breathe and if i can breathe than I can hope and if I can hope than maybe I can learn to live in a world where I don't belong." ~From 'Perfect World' by Brian James

Say there's a mirror you have trusted to give you a solid unblemished surface reflecting the world then suddenly it breaks and shatters revealing a thousand new surfaces, miniature angels of seeing that must have been there all along hidden in the mirror's bland face but you hadn't known. Who is, who was. Whoever's reading this, if anyone is reading it: does it matter that our old selves are lost to us as surely as the past is lost, or is it enough to know yes we lived then, and we're living now, and the connection must be there?
-Foxfire: Confessions of a Girl Gang, Joyce Carol Oates

"Sometimes we love with nothing more than hope. Sometimes we cry with everything except tears. In the end that's all there is: love and its duty, sorrow and its truth. In the end that's all we have - to hold on tight until the dawn."
-Shantaram by Gregory David Roberts

"I feel you there, in every pore. Your silence clamors in my ears. You can nail up your mouth, cut your tongue out -- but you can't prevent your being there. Can you stop your thoughts? I hear them ticking away like a clock, tick-tock, tick-tock, and I'm certain you hear mine."
-No Exit, Jean Paul Sartre

"When I chose the hardest path, I made my choice deliberately. A man is what he wills himself to be."
-No Exit, Jean Paul Sartre

I was running again along the path, next to the alder bushes. I felt that I had bathed in another's grief, that I was radiant with his tears. The feeling was a happy one, which I have since experienced only rarely: at the sight of a bowed tree, a pierced glove, a horse's eye. It was happy because it had a harmonious flow. It was happy as any movement or radiance is happy. I had once been splintered into a million beings and objects. Today I am one; tomorrow I shall splinter again. And thus everything in the world decants and modulates. That day I was on the crest of a wave. I knew that all my surroundings were notes of one and the same harmony, knew -- secretly -- the source and the inevitable resolution of the sounds assembled for an instant, and the new chord that would be engendered by each of the dispersing notes. My soul's musical ear knew and comprehended everything.
- from "Sounds," by Vladimir Nabokov

I wake to sleep, and take my waking slow.
I feel my fate in what I cannot fear.
I learn by going where I have to go.
We think by feeling. What is there to know?
I hear my being dance from ear to ear.
I wake to sleep, and take my waking slow.
Of those so close beside me, which are you?
God bless the Ground! I shall walk softly there,
And learn by going where I have to go.
Light takes the Tree; but who can tell us how?
The lowly worm climbs up a winding stair;
I wake to sleep, and take my waking slow.
Great Nature has another thing to do
To you and me, so take the lively air,
And, lovely, learn by going where to go.
This shaking keeps me steady. I should know.
What falls away is always. And is near.
I wake to sleep, and take my waking slow.
I learn by going where I have to go.
-"The Waking", Theodore Roethke

"The thing that irks me most is this shattered prison, after all. I'm tired, tired of being enclosed here. I'm wearying to escape into that glorious world, and to be always there: not seeing it dimly through tears, and yearning for it through the walls of an aching heart, but really with it, and in it."
-Emily Bronte, Wuthering Heights

He closed the door and, walking swiftly to the bed, knelt beside it and covered his face with his hands. His hands were cold and damp and his limbs ached with chill. Bodily unrest and chill and weariness beset him, routing his thoughts. Why was he kneeling there like a child saying his evening prayers? To be alone with his soul, to examine his conscience, to meet his sins face to face, to recall their times and manners and circumstances, to weep over them. He could not weep. He could not summon them to his memory. He felt only an ache of soul and body, his whole being, memory, will, understanding, flesh, benumbed and weary.
-James Joyce: A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man

"Lovers find their way by such insights and confidences: they're the stars we use to navigate the oceans of desire. And the brightest of those stars are the heartbreaks and sorrows. The most precious gift you can bring to your lover is your suffering. So I took each sadness she confessed to me and pinned it to the sky."
-Shantaram by Gregory David Roberts

They will feel less alone because of you, they will feel understood, unburdened by you, awakened by you, freed of guilt and shame and sorrow. But to share with them you must wear shoes you must go out you must not hide you must dance and it will be harder you must face jealousy and sometimes rage and desire and love which can hurt most of all because of what can then be taken away. So make that astral dress to fit your own body this time.
-Francesca Lia Block

"A man can go from being a lover to being a stranger in three moves flat but a woman under the guise of friendship will engage in acts of duplicity, which come to light very much later. There are different species of self-justification."
- Anita Brookner

“I am an excitable person who only understands life lyrically, musically, in whom feelings are much stronger than reason. I am so thirsty for the marvelous that only the marvelous has power over me. Anything I can not transform into something marvelous, I let go. Reality doesn't impress me. I only believe in intoxication, in ecstasy, and when ordinary life shackles me, I escape, one way or another. No more walls.”
-Anais Nin

'Remember that I think of, admire and honour only you, and if when I were dead my spirit could hover around you, I would no longer wish to live.'
-"Lucrezia Borgia" by Maria Bellonci

So, now I shall talk every night. To myself. To the moon. I shall walk, as I did tonight, jealous of my loneliness, in the blue-silver of the cold moon, shining brilliantly on the drifts of fresh-fallen snow, with the myriad sparkles. I talk to myself and look at the dark trees, blessedly neutral. So much easier than facing people, than having to look happy, invulnerable, clever. With masks down, I walk, talking to the moon, to the neutral impersonal force that does not hear, but merely accepting my being. And does not smite me down.
-Sylvia Plath, in "Cambridge Notes," 1956 from Johnny Panic and the Bible of Dream

"Depression is the flaw in love. To be creatures who love, we must be creatures who can despair at what we lose, and depression is the mechanism of that despair."
-Andrew Solomon, The Noonday Demon: An Atlas of Depression

"If I lose the light of the sun, I will write by candlelight, moonlight, no light. If I lose paper and ink, I will write in blood on forgotten walls. I will write always.I will capture nights all over the world and bring them to you.....
Night is the harvester of memories. Night is the gatherer of thoughts that hide in sunlight. Night brings out the inhabitants from the deep cracks that shun the idiotic noise of the masses. Night empowers and makes one bold. True love and the telling of secrets only happens at night. Sunlight is a passionless interrogator. Candlelight brings out the beauty of the human form."
-Henry Rollins, Black Coffee Blues

I love you without knowing how, or when, or from where. I love you straightforwardly without complexities or pride. I love you because I know no other way then this. So close that your hand, on my chest, is my hand. So close, that when you close your eyes, I fall asleep.
-Pablo Neruda

It was a game, fitting bone on bone. I thought difference was rated to be the largest part of sexual attraction but there are so many things about us that are the same.
Bone of my bone. Flesh of my flesh. To remember you it's my own body I touch. Thus she was, here and here. The physical memory blunders through the doors the mind has tried to seal. A skeleton key to bluebeard's chamber. The bloody key that unlocks pain. Wisdom says forget, the body howls. The bolts of your collar bone undo me. Thus she was, here and here.
-Jeanette Winterson "Written on the Body"

She was sorry to have hurt her, but she wanted them all to leave her alone, let her keep it together. Kindness was the last thing she needed. She had to stay in the icy place, the numb place, and their warmth threatened to melt her just when she needed the cold.
-Paint It Black by Janet Fitch

"Madness is the inability to communicate your ideas. It's as if you were in a foreign country, able to see and understand everything around you, but incapable of explaining what you need or of being helped because you don't understand the language they speak there."
"We've all felt that."
"And all of us, one way or another, are mad."
-Veronika Decides to Die,Paulo Coelho

Whoever wants to live and enjoy his life today must not be like you and me. Whoever wants music instead of noise, joy instead of pleasure, soul instead of gold, creative work instead of business, passion instead of foolery, finds no home in this trivial world of ours.
-Hermann Hesse, "Steppenwolf"

And here I am poised above with my arms spread flying.
And there are halos of light spinning out of us.
And yes this is me becoming wholly human and my own self.
-Francesca Lia Block, Echo

The mirror cannot lie, and yet it does, it does! It cannot reflect the flame-like destinies trapped inside the frustrated soul.
-Michel Faber, "The Crimson Petal and the White"

"Before you...my life was like a moonless night. Very dark, but there were stars -- points of light and reason.
...And then you shot across my sky like a meteor. Suddenly everything was on fire; there was brilliancy, there was beauty. When you were gone, when the meteor had fallen over the horizon, everything went black. Nothing had changed, but my eyes were blinded by the light. I couldn't see the stars anymore. And there was no more reason for anything."
- Stephanie Meyer, "New Moon"

"I have been resting, just staring down at the castle. I wish I could find words - serious, beautiful words - to describe it in the afternoon sunlight; the more I strive for them, the more they utterly eldue me. How can one capture the pool of light in the courtyard, the golden windows, the strange long-ago look, the look that one sees in old paintings? I can only think of "the light of other days," and I didn't make that up..."
-Dodie Smith, I Capture the Castle

She could see it all so clearly, so commandingly, when she looked: it was when she took her brush in hand that the whole thing changed. It was in that moment's flight between the picture and her canvas that the demons set on her who often brought her to the verge of tears and made this passage from conception to work as dreadful as any down a dark passage for a child.
-Virginia Woolf, "To the Lighthouse"

With her mind she had always siezed the fact that there is no reason, order, justice: but suffering, death, the poor. There was no treachery too base for the world to commit; she knew that. No happiness lasted; she knew that.
-Virginia Woolf, "To the Lighthouse"

"Everything happens for a reason. Nothing happens by chance or by means of good or bad luck. Illness, injury, love, lost moments of true greatness, and sheer stupidity all occur to test the limits of your soul. Without these small tests, if they be events, illnesses, or relationships, life would be like a smoothly paved, straight, flat road to nowhere."
-Rainer Maria Rilke

Do not assume that she who seeks to comfort you now, lives untroubled among the simple and quiet words that sometimes do you good. Her life may also have much sadness and difficulty, that remains far beyond yours. Were it otherwise, she would never have been able to find these words.
-Rainer Maria Rilke

All emotions are pure which gather you and lift you up; that emotion is impure which seizes only one side of your being and so distorts you.
-Rainer Maria Rilke

All the soarings of my mind begin in my blood.
-Rainer Maria Rilke

Believe that with your feelings and your work you are taking part in the greatest; the more strongly you cultivate this belief, the more will reality and the world go forth from it.
-Rainer Maria Rilke

Everything is blooming most recklessly; if it were voices instead of colors, there would be an unbelievable shrieking into the heart of the night.
-Rainer Maria Rilke

For one human being to love another; that is perhaps the most difficult of all our tasks, the ultimate, the last test and proof, the work for which all other work is but preparation.
-Rainer Maria Rilke

He reproduced himself with so much humble objectivity, with the unquestioning, matter of fact interest of a dog who sees himself in a mirror and thinks: there's another dog.
-Rainer Maria Rilke

I have never been aware before how many faces there are. There are quantities of human beings, but there are many more faces, for each person has several.
-Rainer Maria Rilke

If your daily life seems poor, do not blame it; blame yourself that you are not poet enough to call forth its riches; for the Creator, there is no poverty.
-Rainer Maria Rilke

Once the realization is accepted that even between the closest human beings infinite distances continue, a wonderful living side by side can grow, if they succeed in loving the distance between them which makes it possible for each to see the other whole against the sky.
-Rainer Maria Rilke

Perhaps everything terrible is in its deepest being something helpless that wants help from us.
-Rainer Maria Rilke

Surely all art is the result of one's having been in danger, of having gone through an experience all the way to the end, where no one can go any further.
-Rainer Maria Rilke

This is the miracle that happens every time to those who really love: the more they give, the more they possess.
-Rainer Maria Rilke

Who has not sat before his own heart's curtain? It lifts: and the scenery is falling apart.
-Rainer Maria Rilke

A person isn't who they are during the last conversation you had with them - they're who they've been throughout your whole relationship.
-Rainer Maria Rilke

Have patience with everything that remains unsolved in your heart. Try to love the questions themselves, like locked rooms and like books written in a foreign language. Do not now look for the answers. They cannot now be given to you because you could not live them. It is a question of experiencing everything. At present you need to live the question. Perhaps you will gradually, without even noticing it, find yourself experiencing the answer, some distant day.
-Rainer Maria Rilke

I hold this to be the highest task for a bond between two people: that each protects the solitude of the other.
-Rainer Maria Rilke

At the bottom no one in life can help anyone else in life; this one experiences over and over in every conflict and every perplexity: that one is alone. That isn't as bad as it may first appear; and again it is the best thing in life that each should have everything in himself; his fate, his future, his whole expanse and world.
-Rainer Maria Rilke

I want to be with those who know secret things or else alone.
-Rainer Maria Rilke

I feel it now...there's a power in me to grasp and give shape to my world. I know that nothing has ever been real without my beholding it.
-Rainer Maria Rilke

Destiny itself is like a wonderful wide tapestry in which every thread is guided by an unspeakably tender hand, placed beside another thread and held and carried by a hundred others.
-Rainer Maria Rilke

When I saw others straining toward God, I did not understand it, for though I may have had him less than they did, there was no one blocking the way between him and me, and I could reach his heart easily. It is up to him, after all, to have us, our part consists of almost solely in letting him grasp us.
-Rainer Maria Rilke

Pointed criticism, if accurate, often gives the artist an
inner sense of relief. The criticism that damages is that
which disparages, dismisses, ridicules, or condemns.
-William Ernest Henley

To avoid criticism do nothing, say nothing, be nothing.
-Elbert Hubbard

Let criticism motivate you.
-Jan Ruhe

Do what you feel in your heart to be right, for you'll be criticized anyway.
-Eleanor Roosevelt

It is not the critic who counts, not the man who points out
how the strong man stumbled, or where the doer of deeds
could have done better. The credit belongs to the man who is
actually in the arena; whose face is marred by the dust and
sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs and comes
short again and again...who knows the great enthusiasms, the
great devotions and spends himself in a worthy course;
who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement,
and who, at worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly;
so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls
who know neither victory nor defeat.
-Theodore Roosevelt

The way we respond to criticism pretty much depends on the
way we respond to praise. If praise humbles us, then criticism
will build us up. But if praise inflates us,
then criticism will crush us; and both responses lead to our defeat.
-Warren W. Wiersbe

Flatter me, and I may not believe you. Criticize me,
and I may not like you. Ignore me, and I may not forgive you.
Encourage me, and I will not forget you.
-William Arthur Ward

"These memories of happiness are fleeting things, reflections in a stream, glimpsed all broken for a second and then swept away in a current of grief that is our life now. I can't say that I ever feel what it felt like then, when I was happy. But sometimes something will touch the place where that feeling was, a touch as slight and swift as the brush of a moth's wing in the dark."
-"Year Of Wonders" Geraldine Brooks

The humiliation I go through
when I think of my past
can only be described as grace.
We are created by being destroyed.
-Franz Wright, from “Letter, January 1998″

If you don't know what you want to do with your life, you can't get hooked up with someone else who doesn't know either. Both halves of a couple need to be strong and look out for each other's best interests. If they don't, then you'll live life like a chicken with its head cut off, bouncing around, getting nowhere, 'til you fall down from exhaustion, ready to die.
-Nancy Moser "Second Time Around"

"A stone has been cast into the reliable immutable pond of the past, and as the ripples subside everything appears different.
The reflections are quite other; everything has swung and shattered, it is all beyond recovery."
-The Photograph by Penelope Lively

Empathy will work better. Sympathy is the capacity to be affected by someone else’s pain. Empathy requires that you go close to experiencing the pain yourself. It requires that you project yourself into the situation and then introspect on how you feel…
-Elliot Perlman, Seven Types of Ambiguity

She...would dance herself off her feet and laugh and joke...while at night she would cry and pray and find no peace of mind and frequently spend her time till morning wandering about her room sorrowfully wringing her hands or sitting, all pale and cold... Day would dawn and she would...go out and laugh and chatter.
-Ivan Turgenev "Fathers and Sons"

They were standing in front of the shelves of books. “Take any of them you want,” Pohlmann said. “Sometimes they help you through an evening.”
Graeber shook his head. “They don’t help me. But there’s one thing I’d like to know: how does all this fit together—these books, these poems, these philosophies—with the inhumanity of the S.A., the concentration camps and the liquidation of innocent people?”
“They don’t fit together. They simply exist at the same time. If the men who wrote these books were alive most of them would be sitting in a concentration camp too.”
Pohlmann looked at Graeber. “You intend to get married?”
The old man pulled a volume from a shelf. “I can’t give you anything else. Take this. It’s nothing to read; it’s pictures, just pictures. There have been times when I was not able to read and spent whole evenings just looking at pictures. Pictures and poems—they always helped as long as I had oil for the lamp. Later, in the dark, of course there was only prayer left.”
“Yes,” Graeber said without conviction.
“I’ve thought a great deal about you. And I’ve thought about what you said to me recently. There’s no answer.” Pohlmann hesitate and then said softly: “Only one. You must believe. What else remains?”
“Believe in what?”
“In God. And in what’s good in men.”
“Haven’t you ever doubted that?” Graeber asked.
“Of course,” the old man replied. “Often. How else could I believe?”
-A Time to Love and a Time to Die by Erich Maria Remarque

"In everybody's life there's a point of no return. And in a very few cases, a point where you can't go forward anymore. And when we reach that point, all we can do is quietly accept the fact. That's how we survive."
-Haruki Murakami, Kafka on the Shore

Our legs refuse to move, our hands tremble, our bodies are a thin skin stretched painfully over repressed madness, over an almost irresistible, bursting roar.
-"All Quiet on the Western Front" by Erich Maria Remarque

"Do you see him? Do you see the story? Do you see anything? It seems I am trying to tell you a dream - making a vain attempt, because no relation of a dream can convey the dream-sensation, that commingling of absurdity, surprise, and bewilderment in a tremor of struggling revolt, that notion of being captured by the incredible which is the very essence of dreams...no, it is impossible; it is impossible to convey the life-sensation of any given epoch of one's existence - that which makes its truth, its meaning - its subtle and penetrating essence. It is impossible. We live, as we dream - alone..."
-"Heart of Darkness" Joseph Conrad

A poet is a painter in his way; he draws to the life, but in another kind; we draw the nobler part, the soul and mind; the pictures of the pen shall out-last those of the pencil, and even worlds themselves.
-Aphra Behn, "Ooronoko"

"I like flaws and feel more comfortable around people who have them. I myself am made entirely of flaws, stitched together with good intentions."
-Augusten Burroughs, "Beating Raoul" from Magical Thinking

...the only people for me are the mad ones, the ones who are mad to live, mad to talk, mad to be saved, desirous of everything at the same time, the ones who never yawn or say a commonplace thing, but burn, burn, burn like fabulous yellow roman candles exploding like spiders across the stars and in the middle you see the blue centerlight pop and everybody goes "Awww!"
-Jack Kerouac, On the Road

"Love has got complicated, tied up with promises, bruised with plans, dogged with an ending that nobody wants -- when all love is, is what it always is -- that you look at me and want me and I don't turn away. If I want to say no, I will, but for the right reasons. If I want to say yes, I will, but for the right reasons. Leave the consequences. Leave the finale. Leave the grand statements. This simplicity of feeling should not be taxed."
"Powerbook", Jeanette Winterson

"All the witnesses have told the truth. But not the whole truth. I am merely filling in the omissions. They spoke of a threat and of hatred. They were right. The Stoddard Temple is a threat to many things. If it were allowed to exist, nobody would dare to look at himself in the mirror. And that is a cruel thing to do to men. Ask anything of men. Ask them to achieve wealth, fame, love, brutality, murder, self-sacrifice. But don't ask them to achieve self-respect. They will hate your soul. Well, they know best. They must have their reasons. They won't say, of course, that they hate you. They will say that you hate them. It's near enough, I suppose. They know the emotions involved. Such are men as they are. So what is the use to being a martyr to the impossible? What is the use of a building for a world that does not exist?"
-Ayn Rand, The Fountainhead

"I've discovered the true secret of happiness, Daddy, and that is to live in the now. Not to be for ever regretting the past, or anticipating the future; but to get the most that you can out of this very instant. It's like farming. You can have extensive farming and intensive farming; well, I am going to have intensive living after this. I'm going to enjoy every second, and I'm going to KNOW I'm enjoying it while I'm enjoying it. Most people don't live; they just race. They are trying to reach some goal far away on the horizon, and in the heat of the going they get so breathless and panting that they lose all sight of the beautiful, tranquil country they are passing through; and then the first thing they know, they are old and worn out, and it doesn't make any difference whether they've reached the goal or not."
-Jean Webster, Daddy-Long-Legs

I tell her I want to die first. I've gotten so used to her that I would feel miserably incomplete. We are two views of the same person. I would spend the rest of my life turning to speak to her. No one there, a hole in space and time. She claims my death would leave a bigger hole in her life than her death would leave in mine. This is the level of our discourse. The relative size of holes, abysses and gaps. We have serious arguments on this level. She says if her death is capable of leaving a large hole in my life, my death would leave an abyss in hers, a great yawning gulf. I counter with a profound depth or void. And so it goes into the night. These arguments never seem foolish at the time. Such is the dignifying power of our subject.
-Don DeLillo, White Noise

"I scream at the top of my lungs for the longest time. And I know I should stop, but I can't. It just keeps coming out. But I don't cry. I won't let myself cry."
-"Faking 19" Alyson Noel

I am alone. Alone here and alone in the world. Alone in my heart and alone in my mind. Alone everywhere, all the time, for as long as I can remember. Alone with my Family, alone with my friends, alone in a Room full of People. Alone when I wake, alone through each awful day, alone when I finally meet the blackness. I am alone in my horror. Alone in my horror.
I don't want to be alone. I have never wanted to be alone. I fucking hate it. I hate that I have no one to talk to, I hate it that I have no one to call, I hate that I have no one to hold my hand, hug me, tell me everything is going to be all right. I hate that I have no one to share my hopes and my dreams with, I hate that I no longer have any hopes or dreams, I hate that I have no one to tell me to hold on, that I can find them again. I hate that when I scream, and I scream bloody murder, that I am screaming into emptiness. I hate that there is no one to hear my scream and that there is no one to help me learn how to stop screaming. I hate that what I have turned to in my loneliness lives in a pipe or a bottle. I hate that what I have turned to in my loneliness is killing me, has already killed me, or will kill me soon. I hate that I will die alone. I will die alone in my horror.
More than anything, all I have ever wanted is to be close to someone.
-"A Million Little Pieces," by James Frey

I had a thought for no one's but your ears:
That you were beautiful, and that I strove
To love you in the old high way of love;
That it had all seemed happy, and yet we'd grown
As weary-hearted as that hollow moon.
-William Butler Yeats, "Adam's Curse"

All my life, I thought of love as some kind of voluntary enslavement. Well, that's a lie: freedom only exists when love is present. The person who gives him or herself wholly, the person who feels freest, is the person who loves most wholeheartedly.
-Eleven Minutes by Paulo Coelho

Therefore I suppose that everything I see is false. I believe that none of what my deceitful memory represents ever existed. I have no senses whatever. Body, shape, extension, movements, and place are all chimeras. What then will be true? Perhaps just the single fact that nothing is certain.
-Rene Descartes, Meditations on First Philosophy

"There are two kinds of love...in the safe kind, you look for someone who's exactly like you. It's what most folks settle for. But then there's the other kind of love. Everyone's born with a ragged edge, and some folks crave the piece that's a perfect fit. You'll search for it forever, if you have to. And if you're lucky enough to find it, it looks so right, you start to tear at your own seams, thinking, maybe, I could look just as perfect. But then, of course, when you try to get close to their other half, you don't fit anymore. That kind of love...you come out of it a different person than when you started."
-Vanishing Acts, Jodi Picoult

"What if it turns out that a life isn't defined by who you belong to or where you came from, by what you wished for or whom you've lost, but instead by the moments you spend getting back from each of these places to the next?"
-Vanishing Acts, Jodi Picoult

"If I had a camera," I said, "I’d take a picture of you every day. That way I’d remember how you looked every single day of your life."
"I look the same."
"No, you don’t. You’re changing all the time. Every day a tiny bit. If I could, I’d keep a record of it all."
"If you’re so smart, how did I change today?"
"You got a fraction of a millimeter taller, for one thing. Your hair grew a fraction of a millimeter longer.You got a little happier and also a little sadder."
"How do you know?"
"Think about it. Have you ever been happier than right now?"
"I guess not."
"And have you ever been sadder than right now?"
"It isn’t like that for everyone. Some people just get happier and happier. And some people, like Beyla Asch, get sadder and sadder."
"What about you? Are you the happiest and saddest right now that you’ve ever been?"
"Of course I am."
"Because nothing makes me happier and nothing makes me sadder than you."
-The History of Love, Nicole Krauss

"Alone? Angel, take it from me, you are alone. Most people are alone. To not be alone somebody has to connect with you and you have to connect with them. I mean really connect. I mean that somebody has to make the emotional and intellectual effort to come with you as you ride the relentless waves of fear and hope, of pain and pleasure, of doubt and certainty, that inhabit the sea of human experience.
And you have to return the compliment. You have to project yourself into someone else's pain and, by absorbing, lessen it. Listen to me, Angel. I was determined to not go out entirely alone. There is nothing I can do to make someone ride those waves with me. I know that. But projecting myself into someone else's pain, that's up to me. Thats why I took him. That's why I took Sam. I could feel his impending pain and it was that pain that I tried to preempt by what I did. You don't understand, do you? Nobody has ever ridden those waves with you. And you have never made time in your busy schedule of lying on your back, eating and sleeping, watching television, to work at feeling someone else's pain. Angel, you're right. You are alone."
-Seven Types of Ambiguity, Elliot Perlman

Millions and millions of years would still not give me half enough time to describe that tiny instant of all eternity when you put your arms around me and I put my arms around you.
-Jacques Prévert

"On the inside I am Bad Kate, daughter of no one. She's such a bitch, thinks she's all that, prays with her eyes open, lets her boyfriend put his hands all over her. Miss Perfect, Miss Suck-up. Disrespectful, disagreeable. Still waters run deep and dirty. She's going to lose it, just you watch, I've seen her type before."
- "Catalyst" Laurie Halse Anderson

She became a ship passing in the night — an emblem of the loneliness of human life, an occasion for queer confidences and sudden appeals for sympathy.
-Virginia Woolf "The Voyage Out"

To feel anything strongly was to create an abyss between oneself and others who feel strongly perhaps but differently.
-Virginia Woolf "The Voyage Out"

"It was my first inkling that he was a writer. And while I like writers - because if you ask a writer anything, you usually get an answer - still it belittled him in my eyes. Writers aren't people exactly. Or, if they're any good, they're a whole lot of people trying so hard to be one person. It's like actors, who try so pathetically not to look in mirrors. Who lean backward trying - only to see their faces in the reflecting chandeliers."
-F. Scott Fitzgerald, The Last Tycoon

Your questioning eyes are sad. They seek to know my meaning as
the moon would fathom the sea.
I have bared my life before your eyes from end to end, with
nothing hidden or held back. That is why you know me not.
If it were only a gem I could break it into a hundred pieces and
string them into a chain to put on your neck.
If it were only a flower, round and small and sweet, I could
pluck it from its stem to set it in your hair.
But it is a heart, my beloved. Where are its shores and its
-Rabindranath Tagor, The Gardener

I like to see people reunited, maybe that's a silly thing, but what can I say, I like to see people run to each other, I like the kissing and the crying, I like the impatience, the stories that the mouth can't tell fast enough, the ears that aren't big enough, the eyes that can't take in all of the change, I like the hugging, the bringing together, the end of missing someone...
-Jonathan Safran Foer, "Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close"

"I know why we try to keep the dead alive; we try to keep them alive in order to keep them with us.
I also know that if we are to live ourselves there comes a point at which we must relinquish the dead, let them go, keep them dead.
Let them become the photograph on the table.
Knowing this does not make it any easier to let go."
-"The Year of Magical Thinking" by Joan Didion

“Time. You haven’t any time. Well, you won’t ever have any time, because there isn’t any such thing, and you’ll spend your whole life looking for some of it so you can put it aside to do the things you want to do. There isn’t any time, there’s just you. It’d be good if you could learn that young. It took me my whole life to learn, but I know it now.”
-I See By My Outfit by Peter S. Beagle

"...she saw people for what they truly were. And they hated her for it. Hated her."
-"The Last Song of Dusk" Siddharth Dhanvant Shanghvi

"...the only purpose of innocence is that it had to be lost, and the most defining characteristic of love was that it must be longed for."
-"The Last Song of Dusk" Siddharth Dhanvant Shanghvi

All my life I’ve been harassed by questions: Why is something this way and not another? How do you account for that? This rage to understand, to fill in the blanks, only makes life more banal. If we could only find the courage to leave our destiny to chance, to accept the fundamental mystery of our lives, then we might be closer to the sort of happiness that comes with innocence.
-"My Last Sigh" by Luis Buñuel

"The walk I now remembered. It seemed to me that I had tasted heaven then. If only such a moment could return! But what I never realized was that it had returned--that the remembering of that walk was itself a new experience of just the same kind. True, it was desire, not possession. But then what I had felt on the walk had also been desire, and only possession in so far as that kind of desire is itself desirable, is the fullest possession we can know on earth; or rather, because the very nature of Joy makes nonsense of our common distinction between having and wantting. There, to have is to want and to want is to have. Thus, the very moment when I longed to be so stabbed again, was itself again such a stabbing. "
-C.S. Lewis, "Surprised By Joy"

"...I shambled after as usual as I've been doing all my life after people that interest me, because the only people that interest me are the mad ones, the ones who are mad to live, mad to talk, desirous of everything at the same time, the ones that never yearn or say the commonplace thing... but burn, burn, burn like roman candles across the night."
-Jack Kerouac

"As I trace the route to his apartment, the twists and turns, and pass once more the old tree opposite his house, I am struck by a sudden thought: memories have ways of becoming independent of the reality they evoke. They can soften us against those we were deeply hurt by or they can make us resent those we once accepted and loved unconditionally."
-"Reading Lolita in Tehran" Azar Nafisi

"She was beautiful, her beauty fell and terrible to look upon. Her face was cold as the vast, frozen wastelands to the south, where a man perishes in an instant, his breath turning to ice in his lungs. Her eyes were the flames of a funeral pyre. Her nails were talons, her hair long and ragged hair of the corpse. Her armor was black fire. At her side, she wore a sword perpetually stained with blood, a sword used to sever the souls from their bodies"

"Well, your opinion is as good as hers, I think," said Elphaba. "That's the power of real art, I think. Not to chide but to provoke challenge. Otherwise why bother?"
-Gregory Maguire, "Wicked"

You don't know what worry is. I don't know what it is. I don't know whether I am worrying or not. Whether I can or not. I don't know where I can cry or not. I don't know whether I have tried to or not. I feel like a wet seed wild in the hot blind earth.
-As I Lay Dying by William Faulkner

Once, when I was seven or eight, my mother said to me, as we sat on the last seat but one on the bus to the clinic, or the shoe shop, that while it was true that books could change with the years just as much as people could, the difference was that whereas people would always drop you when they could no longer get any advantage or pleasure or interest or at least a good feeling from you, a book would never abandon you. Naturally you sometimes dropped them, maybe for several years, or even forever. But they, even if you betrayed them, would never turn their backs on you: they would go on waiting for you silently and humbly on their shelf. They would wait for ten years. They wouldn't complain. One night, when you suddenly needed a book, even at three in the morning, even if it was a book you had abandoned and erased from your heart for years and years, it would never disappoint you, it would come down from its shelf and keep you company in your moment of need. It would not try to get its own back or make excuses or ask itself if it was worth its while or if you deserved it or if you still suited each other, it would come at once as soon as you asked. A book would never let you down.
-A Tale of Love and Darkness,Amos Oz

I'm not explaining this right. What happened was this. There were these beautiful feelings and loose little pleasures inside me. And this woman was something like an assembly line for my soul. I run these little pieces of myself through her and I come out complete. Now do you follow me?
-Carson McCullers, A Tree A Rock A Cloud from Ballad of the Sad Café

Never say I love you if it isn't really there. Never talk about feelings if you really don't care. Never hold my hand if you're going to break my heart. Never say you're gonna if you don't plan to start. Never look into my eyes if all you're gonna do is lie. Never say hello if you really mean goodbye. If you really mean forever then please really try. Never say forever because forever makes me cry.

"The best love is the kind that awakens the soul and makes us reach for more, that plants a fire in our hearts and brings peace to our minds. And that's what you've given me. That's what I'd hoped to give you forever."
-The Notebook

"I am no one special, just a common man with common thoughts. I've led a common life. There are no monuments dedicated to me, and my name will soon be forgotten. But in one respect, I've succeeded as gloriously as anyone who ever lived. I've loved another with all my heart and soul, and for me, that has always been enough."
-The Notebook

God doesn't give you the people you want. Instead he gives you the people you need: to teach you, to hurt you, to love you and to mold you into exactly the person you were meant to be.

If you have made mistakes, even serious mistakes, you may have a fresh start any moment you choose, for this thing we call "failure" is not the falling down, but the staying down.
-Mary Pickford

"People disappear when they die. Their voice, their laughter, the warmth of their breath. Their flesh. Eventually their bones. All living memory of them ceases. This is both dreadful and natural. Yet for some there is an exception to annilhilation. For in the books they write, they continue to exist. We can rediscover them. Their humor, their tone of voice, their moods. Through the written word they can anger you or make you happy. They can comfort you. They can perplex you. They can alter you. All this, even though they are dead. Like flies in amber, like corpses frozen in ice, that which according to the laws of nature should pass away is, by the miracle of ink on paper, preserved. It is a kind of magic."
-The Thirteenth Tale, by Diane Setterfield

“In the name of the best within you, do not sacrifice this world to those who are its worst. In the name of the values that keep you alive, do not let your vision of man be distorted by the ugly, the cowardly, the mindless in those who have never achieved his title. Do not lose your knowledge that man's proper estate is an upright posture, an intransigent mind and a step that travels unlimited roads. Do not let your fire go out, spark by irreplaceable spark, in the hopeless swamps of the approximate, the not-quite, the not-yet, the not-at-all. Do not let the hero in your soul perish, in lonely frustration for the life you deserved, but have never been able to reach. Check your road and the nature of your battle. The world you desired can be won, it exists, it is real, it is possible, it's yours.”
-Ayn Rand

“I've come to believe that all my past failure and frustration were actually laying the foundation for the understandings that have created the new level of living I now enjoy.”
-Anthony Robbins

“You've done it before and you can do it now. See the positive possibilities. Redirect the substantial energy of your frustration and turn it into positive, effective, unstoppable determination.”
-Ralph Marston

Frustration is commonly the difference between what you would like to be and what you are willing to sacrifice to become what you would like to be.

"I must admire your skill. You are so gracefully insane."
-Anne Sexton

"It's funny whom we end up choosing to love and who ends up choosing to love us. It's rarely the people we think it should be."
-Robin Jones Gunn, Gardenias for Breakfast

How much of love is a choice? How much of it is a mutual commitment? It was one thing for me to feel sorry for myself because I didn't feel sufficiently loved while growing up, but how many people had slipped through my life unpursued? Unloved?
-Robin Jones Gunn, Gardenias for Breakfast

"I cannot tell if this is a breakthrough
or a breakdown.
I'm too close to tell."
-"I Don't Want To Be Crazy" Samantha Schutz

"If there is no love in the world, we will make a new world, and we will give it heavy walls, and we will furnish it with soft red interiors, from the inside out, and give it a knocker that resonates like a diamond falling to a jeweler's felt so that we should never hear it. Love me, because love doesn't exist, and I have tried everything that does."
-Everything Is Illuminated by Jonathan Safran Foer

"D'you know what happens when you hurt people?" Ammu said. "When you hurt people, they begin to love you less. That's what careless words do. They make people love you a little less."
-The God of Small Things by Arundhati Roy

"The only way to find true happiness is to risk being completely cut open."
-Chuck Palahniuk

I wish I could remember. I wish memory were a more steady, more physical artifact. It's just a breeze, or a scent barely detected and fading.
-The Solace of Leaving Early, Haven Kimmel

"We have the idea that our hearts, once broken, scar over with an indestructable tissue that prevents their ever breaking again in quite the same place."
-The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier and Clay, Michael Chabon

If our friendship depends on things like space and time, then when we finally overcome space and time, we've destroyed our own brotherhood! But overcome space, and all we have left is Here. Overcome time, and all we have left is Now. And in the middle of Here and Now, don't you think that we might see each other once or twice?
-Jonathan Livingston Seagull by Richard Bach

"I fear the line between myself and madness is as fine these days as a cobweb, and I have seen what it means when a soul crosses over into that dim and wretched place."
-Year of Wonders, Geraldine Brooks

"For there is nothing heavier than compassion. Not even one's own pain weighs so heavy as the pain one feels with someone, for someone, a pain intensified by the imagination and prolonged by a hundred echos."
-The Unbearable Lightness of Being, Milan Kundera

"...Vertigo is something other than the fear of falling. It is the voice of emptiness below us which tempts and lures us, it is the desire to fall, against which, terrified, we defend ourselves."
-The Unbearable Lightness of Being, Milan Kundera

She felt so old, so worn out, so far away from the best moments of her life that she even yearned for those that she remembered as the worst, and only then did she discover how much she mised the whiff of oregano on the porch and the smell of the roses at dusk. Her heart of compressed ash, which had resisted the most telling blows of daily reality without strain, fell apart with the first waves of nostalgia. The need to feel sad was becoming a vice as the years eroded her. She became human in her solitude.
-One Hundred Years of Solitude by Garcia Marquez

The house is full of bad dreams. They lurk in the curtians like ugly smells, they infest the carpets like the dust mites that may kill babies in their cots. Shake the curtians, beat the carpets: the dreams are tenacious, they cannot be dislodged. They hatch, they multiply.
-'The Worry Box' Marion Halligan

I can be by myself because I'm never lonely, I'm simply alone, living in my heavily populated solitude, a harum-scarum of infinity and eternity, and Infinity and Eternity seem to take a liking to the likes of me.
-Bohumil Hrabal: Too Loud A Solitude

"Don't stop to think, don't interrupt the scream, exhale, release life's rapture. Everything is blooming. Everything is flying. Everything is screaming, choking on its screams. Laughter. Running. Let-down hair. That is all there is to life."
-Gods, Vladimir Nabokov

"She was cynical, sometimes, yes. She could be curt when she grew impatient with people, which was often. But she was romantic, always."
-The Dog Walker by Leslie Schnur

I don’t know, perhaps it’s a dream, all a dream, that would surprise me, I’ll wake, in the silence, and never sleep again, it will be I, or dream, dream again, dream of a silence, a dream silence, full of murmurs, I don’t know, that’s all words, never wake, all words, there’s nothing else, you must go on, that’s all I know, they’re going to stop, I know that well, I can feel it, they’re going to abandon me, it will be the silence, for a moment, a good few moments, or it will be mine, the lasting one, that didn’t last, that still lasts, it will be I, you must go on, I can’t go on, you must go on, I’ll go on, you must say words, as long as there are any, until they find me, until they say me, strange pain, strange sin, you must go on, perhaps it’s done already, perhaps they have said me already, perhaps they have carried me to the threshold of my story, before the door that opens on my story, that would surprise me, if it opens, it will be I, it will be the silence, where I am, I don’t know, I’ll never know, in the silence you don’t know, you must go on, I can’t go on, I’ll go on.
-Samuel Beckett,The Unnamable

I would meet you now
and I would wish this scar
to have been given with
all the love
that never occurred between us.
-Michael Ondaatje's The Time Around Scars

Could fulfillment ever be felt as deeply as loss? Romantically she decided that love must surely reside in the gap between desire and fulfillment, in the lack, not the contentment. Love was the ache, the anticipation, the retreat, everything around it but the emotion itself.
-The Inheritance of Loss, Kiran Desai

"We ended up putting our conscience in the colour of blood and in the salt of tears, and, as if that was not enough, we made our eyes into a kind of mirror turned inwards, with the result that they often show without reserve what we are verbally trying to deny."
-Blindness by Jose Saramago

`Oh -- one would feel things instead of merely looking at them. I should feel the air move against me, and feel the things I touched, instead of having only to look at them. I'm sure life is all wrong because it has become much too visual -- we can neither hear nor feel nor understand, we can only see. I'm sure that is entirely wrong.'
-Women In Love, Lawrence

I think we ought to only read the kind of books that wound and stab us. If the book we are reading doesn't wake us up with a blow on the head, what are we reading it for? . . . We need books that affect us like a disaster, that grieve us deeply, like the death of someone we loved more than ourselves, like being banished into the forest far from everyone, like a suicide. A book must be the axe for the frozen sea inside us.
"Letters to Friends, Family, and Editors" Kafka

"Sometimes I would get up at night to look at the sea. If the night was dark, the thundering of the surf would comfort me; it was the best company I ever had, then and always."
-Before Night Falls by Reinaldo Arenas

"Do you know -- I hardly remembered you?"
"Hardly remembered me?"
"I mean: how shall I explain? I -- it's always so. Each time you happen to me all over again."
-The Age of Innocence, by Edith Wharton

Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn't do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover.
-Mark Twain

It is only by putting it into words that I make it whole; this wholeness means that it has lost its power to hurt me; it gives me, perhaps because by doing so I take away the pain, a great delight to put the severed parts together.
-A Sketch of the Past, Virginia Woolf

Love partakes of the soul itself. It is of the same nature. Like the soul, it is a divine spark; it is incorruptible, indivisible, imperishable. It is a point of fire within us, which is immortal and infinite, which nothing can limit and nothing can extinguish. We feel it burning even in the marrow of our bones, and we see it radiate even to the depths of the sky.
-Les Misérables, Victor Hugo

"I'm sorry to say this but those who are most worthy of love are never made happy by it. Do you still think men love the way we do? No... men enjoy the happiness they feel. We can only enjoy the happiness we give. They are not capable of devoting themselves exclusively to one person. So to hope to be made happy by love is a certain cause of grief."
-Les Liasons Dangereuses, by Pierre Choderlos de Laclos

"Well I had no choice, did I? I'm a woman. Women are obliged to be far more skillful than men. You can ruin our reputation and our life with a few well-chosen words. So of course I had to invent not only myself but ways of escape no one has every thought of before. And I've succeeded because I've always known I was born to dominate your sex and avenge my own."
-Les Liasons Dangereuses, by Pierre Choderlos de Laclos

"When one woman strikes at the heart of another she seldom misses, and the wound is invariably fatal."
-Les Liasons Dangereuses, by Pierre Choderlos de Laclos

You don't survive in me
because of memories;
nor are you mine because
of a lovely longing's strength.
What does make you present
is the ardent detour
that a slow tenderness
traces in my blood.
I do not need
to see you appear;
being born sufficed for me
to lose you a little less.
-Interior Portrait by Rainer Maria Rilke

Look how the same possibilities
unfold in their opposite demeanors,
as though one saw different ages
passing through two identical rooms.
Each thinks that she props up the other,
while resting wearily on her support;
and they can't make use of one another,
for they cause blood to rest on blood,
when as in the former times they softly touch
and try, along the tree-lined walks,
to feel themselves conducted and to lead;
ah, the ways they go are not the same.
-The Sisters by Rainer Maria Rilke

How can I keep my soul in me, so that
it doesn't touch your soul? How can I raise
it high enough, past you, to other things?
I would like to shelter it, among remote
lost objects, in some dark and silent place
that doesn't resonate when your depths resound.
Yet everything that touches us, me and you,
takes us together like a violin's bow,
which draws one voice out of two seperate strings.
Upon what instrument are we two spanned?
And what musician holds us in his hand?
Oh sweetest song.
-Love Song by Rainer Maria Rilke

Take me by the hand;
it's so easy for you, Angel,
for you are the road
even while being immobile.
You see, I'm scared no one
here will look for me again;
I couldn't make use of
whatever was given,
so they abandoned me.
At first the solitude
charmed me like a prelude,
but so much music wounded me.
-Music by Rainer Maria Rilke

She sat just like the others at the table.
But on second glance, she seemed to hold her cup
a little differently as she picked it up.
She smiled once. It was almost painful.

And when they finished and it was time to stand
and slowly, as chance selected them, they left
and moved through many rooms (they talked and laughed),
I saw her. She was moving far behind
the others, absorbed, like someone who will soon
have to sing before a large assembly;
upon her eyes, which were radiant with joy,
light played as on the surface of a pool.
She followed slowly, taking a long time,
as though there were some obstacle in the way;
and yet: as though, once it was overcome,
she would be beyond all walking, and would fly.
-Going Blind by Rainer Maria Rilke

The beauty of the world which is so soon to perish, has two edges, one of laughter, one of anguish, cutting the heart asunder.
-A Room Of One's Own, Virginia Woolf

"I cannot exist, cannot live without you; I shall die if you set me at liberty. Let me remain your slave; kill me, but do not drive me away."
-Venus in Furs, Leopold von Sacher-Masoch

Madness is only an amplification of what you already are.
-Margaret Atwood, Surfacing

Amnesia, that's one techinque: if it hurts invent a different pain.
-Margaret Atwood, Surfacing

"Somewhere someone is thinking of you. Someone is calling you an angel. This person is using celestial colors to paint your image. Someone is making you into a vision so beautiful that it can only live in the mind. Someone is thinking of the way your breath escapes your lips when you are touched. How your eyes close and your jaw tightens with concentration as you give pleasure a home. These thoughts are saving a life somewhere right now. In some airless apartment on a dark, urine stained, whore lined street, someone is calling out to you silently and you are answering without even being there. So crystalline. So pure. Such life saving power when you smile. You will never know how you have cauterized my wounds. So sad that we will never touch. How it hurts me to know that I will never be able to give you everything I have."
-Solipsist by Henry Rollins

Life is a tragedy, one way or another. What is certain is that you die.
-The Vampire Armand by Anne Rice

"There was something about him I'd never seen before, only felt, a goodness behind all the sadness in his eyes, maybe an acceptance for all we could never quite be, him included."
-House of Sand and Fog, Andre Dubus III

"To be young is to be filled with mercy and patience, having lost nothing yet nor knowing even of the bereavement there can be without death coming, now knowing that to be young is to see mercifully. Or in the morning it is to hold the hand up to the light and see the endowed blood running in it, and to be ready: I am ready to take each act of my life as a stone in my hands, never to be denied, and my words will be like stones to myself, as hard and irrevocable. Now I have ten francs a day in my pocket and people to go back to at night I can look at the days ahead or behind me and think of what they will make in the end."
-My Next Bride, Kay Boyle

"As I grow older, much older, I will experience many things, and I will hit rock bottom again and again. Again and again I will suffer; again and again I will get back on my feet. I will not be defeated. I won't let my spirit be destroyed."
-Kitchen by Banana Yoshimoto

Te amo como se aman ciertas cosa oscuras,
secretamente, entre la sombra y el alma.
(I love you as certain darks things are to be loved,
in secret, between the shadow and the soul.)
-Neruda, "Sonnet XVII"

"It isn't possible to love and to part. You will wish that it was. You can transmute love, ignore it, muddle it, but you can never pull it out of you. I know by experience that the poets are right: love is eternal."
- A Room with a View by E.M. Forster

I opened myself to you only to be skinned alive. The more vulnerable I became, the faster and more deft your knife. Knowing what was happening, still I stayed and let you carve more. That's how much I loved you. That's how much.
-Rabih Alameddine: I, the Divine

We are not necessarily doubting that God will do the best for us; we are wondering how painful the best will turn out to be.
-C.S Lewis

It's dangerous to see too much in anyone. And worse to think you have to match it.
-Secrets, Kristen Heitzmann

Sometimes when I saw him at a distance - fists in pockets, whistling, bobbing along with his springy old walk - I would have a strong pang of affection mixed with regret. I forgave him, a hundred times over, and never on the basis of anything more than this: a look, a gesture, a certain tilt of his head.
-Donna Tartt, The Secret History

"Love is the ultimate outlaw. It just won't adhere to any rules. The most any of us can do is to sign on as its accomplice. Instead of vowing to honor and obey, maybe we should swear to aid and abet. That would mean that security is out of the question. The words 'make' and 'stay' become inappropriate. My love for you has no strings attached. I love you for free."
-Tom Robbins, Still Life with Woodpecker

"Her feelings were her own, and could not be altered from the outside. It would not have occured to her that an action which becomes ineffectual thereby becomes meaningless...if you loved someone, you loved him and when you had nothing else to give, you still gave him love."
-Love George Orwell, 1984

"You can't change anything from outside it. Standing apart, looking down, taking in the overview, you see the pattern. What's wrong, what's missing. You want to fix it. But you can't patch it. You have to be in it, weaving it. You have to be part of the weaving."
-Four Ways to Forgiveness by Ursula K. LeGuin

I know this will sound glib,
but don't pretend you aren't feeling what you feel.
That's how things slide into hell.
Feelings are facts.
-The Sparrow, by Mary Doria Russell

This is love, isn't it? When you notice someone's absence and hate that absence more than anything? More, even, than you love his presence?
-Jonathan Safran Foer, Everything Is Illuminated

"Just one thing," she says, raising her head and looking me straight in the eye. "I want you to remember me. If you remember me, then I don't care if everyone else forgets."
-Kafka on the Shore, Haruki Murakami
Bloody Demise of a Fallen Dream
27 September 2006 @ 09:47 pm
"You don't love a woman because she is beautiful, but she is beautiful because you love her."

"If you love somebody, let them go. If they return, they were always yours. If they don't, they never were."

"Love takes off masks that we fear we cannot live without and know we cannot live within."
-James Baldwin

"Absence is to love what wind is to fire; it extinguishes the small, it enkindles the great."
-Comte DeBussy-Rabutin

"Immature love says: 'I love you because I need you.' Mature love says 'I need you because I love you.'"
-Erich Fromm

"For it was not into my ear you whispered, but into my heart. It was not my lips you kissed, but my soul."
-Judy Garland

"We are told never to cross a bridge until we come to it, but this world is owned by men who have 'crossed bridges' in their imagination far ahead of the crowd."

Don't bother just to be better than your contemporaries or predecessors.
Try to be better than yourself.
-William Faulkner

"You can't build a reputation on what you're going to do."
-Henry Ford

"To accomplish great things, we must not only act, but also dream; not only plan, but also believe."
-Anatole France

"Advance, and never halt, for advancing is perfection. Advance and do not fear the thorns in the path, for they draw only corrupt blood."
-Kahlil Gibran, "The Visit of Wisdom"

"Hold fast to dreams, for if dreams die, life is a broken winged bird that cannot fly."
-Langston Hughes

"The roots of true achievement lie in the will to become the best that you can become."
-Harold Taylor

If you have built castles in the air, your work need not be lost; that is where they should be. Now put the foundations under them.
-Henry David Thoreau, Walden

We must learn to reawaken and keep ourselves awake . . . by an infinite expectation of the dawn, which does not forsake us in our soundest sleep. I know of no more encouraging fact than the unquestionable ability of man to elevate his life by a conscious endeavor.
-Henry David Thoreau

"Keep away from people who try to belittle your ambitions. Small people always do that, but the really great make you feel that you, too, can become great."
-Mark Twain

"If you can imagine it,
You can achieve it.
If you can dream it,
You can become it."
-William Arthur Ward

"If you are patient in one moment of anger, you will escape a hundred days of sorrow."
-Chinese Proverb

"Anger is not only inevitable, but it is necessary. For in it's place is indifference, the worst of all human qualities."

Anyone can become angry - that is easy. But to be angry with the right person, to the right degree, at the right time, for the right purpose, and in the right way; this is not easy.

"The world needs anger. The world often continues to allow evil because it isn't angry enough."
-Bede Jarrett, The House of Gold

"He who angers you conquers you."
-Elizabeth Kenny

Anger is a tool for change when it challenges us to become more of an expert on the self and less of an expert on others. . . .If, however, we do not use our anger to define ourselves clearly in every important relationship we are in--and manage our feelings as they arise--no one else will assume this responsibility for us.
-Lerner, The Dance of Anger

Mourn not the dead that in the cool earth lie, but rather mourn the apathetic throng, the coward and the meek who see the world's great anguish and its wrong, and dare not speak.
-Ralph Chaplin

The world is a dangerous place to live; not because of the people who are evil, but because of the people who don't do anything about it.
-Albert Einstein

The tragedy of modern man is not that he knows less and less about the meaning of his own life but that it bothers him less and less.
-Vaclav Havel

"He that always gives way to others will end in having no principles of his own."

"I argue very well. Ask any of my remaining friends. I can win an argument on any topic, against any opponent. People know this, and steer clear of me at parties. Often, as a sign of their great respect, they don't even invite me."
-Dave Barry

Why prove to a man he is wrong? Is that going to make him like you? Why not let him save face? He didn't ask for your opinion. He didn't want it. Why argue with him? You can't win an argument, because if you lose, you lose it; and if you win it, you lose it. Why? You will feel fine. But what about him? You have made him feel inferior, you hurt his pride, insult his intelligence, his judgment, and his self-respect, and he'll resent your triumph. That will make him strike back, but it will never make him want to change his mind. "A man convinced against his will is of the same opinion still."
-Dale Carnegie

People generally quarrel because they cannot argue.
-G. K. Chesterton

"It is better to debate a question without settling it than to settle a question without debating it."
-Jeseph Joubert

"He who establishes his argument by noise and command shows that his reason is weak."
-Michel de Montaigne

"There is no conversation more boring than the one where everybody agrees."
-Michel de Montaigne

"You have not converted a man because you have silenced him."
-John Morley

"A man never tells you anything until you contradict him."
-George Bernard Shaw

At times to be silent is to lie. You will win because you have enough brute force. But you will not convince. For to convince you need to persuade. And in order to persuade you would need what you lack: Reason and Right.
-Miguel de Unamuno

The best artist has that thought alone
Which is contained within the marble shell;
The sculptor's hand can only break the spell
To free the figures slumbering in the stone
-Michelangelo Buonarroti

It is sometimes said that the tragedy of an artist's life is that he cannot realise his ideal. But the true tragedy that dogs the steps of most artists is that they realise their ideal too absolutely. For, when the ideal is realised, it is robbed of its wonder and its mystery, and becomes simply a new starting-point for an ideal that is other than itself.
-Oscar Wilde, from "Intentions"

While we are focusing on fear, worry, or hate, it is not possible for us to be experiencing happiness, enthusiasm or love.
-Bo Bennett

Ability is what you're capable of doing. Motivation determines what you do. Attitude determines how well you do it.
-Lou Holtz

"No pessimist ever discovered the secret of the stars, or sailed to an uncharted land, or opened a new doorway for the human spirit."
-Helen Keller

The longer I live, the more I realize the impact of attitude on life.
Attitude, to me is more important than facts. It is more important than the past, than education, than money, than circumstances, than failures, than successes, than what other people think or say or do. It is more important than appearance, giftedness or skill. It will make or break a company ...a church ...a home. The remarkable thing is we have a choice everyday regarding the attitude we will embrace for that day. We cannot change our past ...we cannot change the fact that people will act in a certain way.
We cannot change the inevitable. The only thing we can do is play on the one string we have, and that is our attitude ...I am convinced that life is 10% what happens to me and 90% how I react to it. And so it is with you ...we are in charge of our attitudes.
-Charles Swindoll

Our judgments judge us; and nothing reveals us [or] exposes our weaknesses more ingeniously than the attitude of pronouncing upon our fellows.
-Paul Valery

"Books are the legacies that a great genius leaves to mankind, which are delivered down from generation to generation as presents to the posterity of those who are yet unborn."
-Joseph Addison

"The writer must be universal in sympathy and an outcast by nature; only then can he see clearly."
-Julian Barnes

When I am dead, I hope it is said,
'His sins were scarlet, but his books were read'.
-Hilaire Belloc

A writer needs loneliness, and he gets his share of it. He needs love, and he gets shared and also unshared love. He needs friendship. In fact, he needs the universe. To be a writer is, in a sense, to be a day-dreamer - to be living a kind of double life.
-Jorge Luis Borges

"Every human being has hundreds of separate people living under his skin. The talent of a writer is his ability to give them their separate names, identities, personalities and have them relate to other characters living with him."
-Mel Brooks

Writing a book is an adventure. To begin with, it is a toy and an amusement. Then it becomes a mistress, then it becomes a master, then it becomes a tyrant. The last phase is that just as you are about to be reconciled to your servitude, you kill the monster, and fling him to the public.
-Sir Winston Churchill

The trouble with writing a book about yourself is that you can't fool around. If you write about someone else, you can stretch the truth from here to Finland. If you write about yourself the slightest deviation makes you realize instantly that there may be honor among thieves, but you are just a dirty liar.
-Groucho Marx

There is a sort of man who pays no attention to his good actions, but is tormented by his bad ones. This is the type that most often writes about himself.
-W. Somerset Maugham

I did try very hard to tell the whole truth without violating my literary instincts. One can write nothing readable unless one constantly struggles to efface one's own personality. Good prose is like a window pane.
-George Orwell

To finish is a sadness to a writer - a little death. He puts the last word down and it is done. But it isn't really done. The story goes on and leaves the writer behind, for no story is ever done.
-John Steinbeck

"The reading of a poem should be an experience. Its writing must be all the more so."
-Wallace Stevens

"There are a thousand thoughts lying within a man that he does not know till he takes up a pen to write."
-William Makepeace Thackeray

One can write out of love or hate. Hate tells one a great deal about a person. Love makes one become the person. Love, contrary to legend, is not half as blind, at least for writing purposes, as hate. Love can see the evil and not cease to be love. Hate cannot see the good and remain hate. The writer, writing out of hatred, will, thus, paint a far more partial picture than if he had written out of love.
-Jessamyn West

I believe in the sun even if it isn't shining. I believe in love even when I am alone. I believe in God even when He is silent.

Believe it can be done. When you believe something can be done, really believe, your mind will find the ways to do it. Believing a solution paves the way to solution.
-Dr. David Schwartz

"Any change, even a change for the better, is always accompanied by drawbacks and discomforts."
-Arnold Bennett

"You must be the change you wish to see in the world."
-Mahatma Gandhi

"I cannot say whether things will get better if we change; what I can say is they must change if they are to get better."
-G. C. Lichtenberg

'Your cold blood cannot be worked into a fever--your veins are full of ice-water--but mine are boiling, and the sight of such chillness makes them dance.'
-Emily Brontë, Wuthering Heights

The white light streams down to be broken up by those human prisms into all the colors of the rainbow. Take your own color in the pattern and be just that.
-Charles R. Brown

"Our character is what we do when we think no one is looking."
-H. Jackson Brown, Jr.

"The true test of character is not how much we know how to do, but how we behave when we don't know what to do."
-John Holt

"Be more concerned with your character than your reputation, because your character is what you really are, while your reputation is merely what others think you are."
-John Wooden

Coffee makes us severe, and grave, and philosophical.
-Jonathan Swift

I never doubted my ability, but when you hear all your life you're inferior, it makes you wonder if the other guys have something you've never seen before. If they do, I'm still looking for it.
-Hank Aaron

If you think about disaster, you will get it. Brood about death and you hasten your demise. Think positively and masterfully, with confidence and faith, and life becomes more secure, more fraught with action, richer in achievement and experience.
-Edward Rickenbacker

"The fastest way to succeed is to look as if you're playing by somebody else's rules, while quietly playing by your own."
-Michael Konda

"The time to stop talking is when the other person nods his head affirmatively but says nothing."

To run away from danger, instead of facing it, is to deny one's faith in man and God, even one's own self. It were better for one to drown oneself than live to declare such bankruptcy of faith.
-Mahatma Gandhi

"Creativity comes from trust. Trust your instincts. And never hope more than you work."
-Rita Mae Brown

"There are two sorts of curiosity -- the momentary and the permanent. The momentary is concerned with the odd appearance on the surface of things. The permanent is attracted by the amazing and consecutive life that flows on beneath the surface of things."
-Robert Lynd

The important thing is not to stop questioning. Curiosity has its own reason for existing. One cannot help but be in awe when he contemplates the mysteries of eternity, of life, of the marvellous structure of reality.
-Albert Einstein

Those who restrain their desires, do so because theirs is weak enough to be restrained.
-William Blake

I wept in my dreams.
I dreamed you lay in the grave;
I awoke, and the tears
still poured down my cheeks.
I wept in my dreams,
I dreamed you had left me;
I awoke and I went on weeping
long and bitterly.
I wept in my dreams,
I dreamed you were still kind to me;
I awoke, and still
the flow of my tears streams on.
-Heinrich Heine

All men dream, but not equally. Those who dream by night in the dusty recesses of their minds, wake in the day to find that it was vanity: but the dreamers of the day are dangerous men, for they may act on their dreams with open eyes, to make them possible.
-Thomas Edward Lawrence

Jealousy is inconsolable because it cannot know the beloved's innermost thoughts.
-Mason Cooley

Jealousy, that dragon which slays love under the pretence of keeping it alive.
-Havelock Ellis

Jealousy is indeed a poor medium to secure love, but it is a secure medium to destroy one's self-respect. For jealous people, like dope-fiends, stoop to the lowest level and in the end inspire only disgust and loathing.
-Emma Goldman

"Divine Justice demands that the rights of both sexes should be equally respected since neither is superior to the other in the eyes of Heaven. Dignity before God depends, not on sex, but on purity and luminosity of heart. Human virtues belong equally to all!"

"In the spider-web of facts, many a truth is strangled."
-Paul Eldridge

"Fate is like a small sandstorm that keeps changing directions. You change direction but the sandstorm chases you. You turn again, but the storm adjusts. Over and over you play this out, like some ominous dance with death just before dawn. Why? Because this storm isn't something that blew in from far away, something that has nothing to do with you. This storm is you. Something inside of you. So all you can do is give in to it, step right inside the storm, closing your eyes and plugging up your ears so the sand doesn't get in, and walk through it, step by step."
-Haruki Murakami

"I must not fear. Fear is the mind-killer. Fear is the little-death that brings total obliteration. I will face my fear. I will permit it to pass over me and through me. And when it has gone past I will turn the inner eye to see its path. Where the fear has gone there will be nothing. Only I will remain."
-Frank Herbert

"You can discover what your enemy fears most by observing the means he uses to frighten you."
-Eric Hoffer

"Fear is that little darkroom where negatives are developed."
-Michael Pritchard

Forgiveness is love in its most noble form.

Forgiveness does not change the past, but it does enlarge the future.
-Paul Boese

Of what use is freedom of speech to those who fear to offend?
-Roger Ebert

"Freedom is not worth having if it does not include the freedom to make mistakes."
-Mahatma Gandhi

Freedom is a fragile thing and is never more than one generation away from extinction. It is not ours by inheritance; it must be fought for and defended constantly by each generation, for it comes only once to a people. Those who have known freedom, and then lost it, have never known it again.
-Ronald Reagan

"It is by the goodness of God that we have those three unspeakably precious things: freedom of speech, freedom of conscience, and the prudence never to practice either of them."
-Mark Twain

To be humble to superiors, is duty; to equals, is courtesy; to inferiors, is nobleness; and to all, safety;…
-Thomas Moore

The only reward of virtue is virtue; the only way to have a friend is to be one.
-Ralph Waldo Emerson

'The friends I made have slipped and strayed.
And who's the one that cares
A trifling lot and best forgot -
And that's my tale, and theirs.
Then if my 'friendships break and bend
There's little need to cry
The while I know that every foe
Is faithful till I die.'
-Dorothy Parker

Know that when you seek anything of your own, you will never find God, because you do not seek God purely. You are seeking something along with God, and you are acting just as if you were to make a candle out of God in order to look for something with it. Once one finds the things one is looking for, one throws the candle away. This is what you are doing.
-Meister Eckhart

"We count our miseries carefully, and accept our blessings without much thought."
-Chinese Proverb

"What a crazy world we live in! Trying to treat addiction as a legal problem, and trying to treat criminal misbehaviors using guns as a medical problem! Beam me up, Scotty. Ain't no intelligent life down here."
-Julie Cochrane

"Most people would rather be certain they're miserable, than risk being happy."
-Robert Anthony

When the heart has acquired stillness, it will look upon the heights and depths of knowledge , and the intellect, once quieted, will be given to hear wonderful things from God.
-Hesychios the Martyr

"History never repeats itself ,as most people fear. People usually repeat history."
-Divine Chikobvu

"Each time you are honest and conduct yourself with honesty, a success force will drive you toward greater success. Each time you lie, even with a little white lie, there are strong forces pushing you toward failure."
-Joseph Sugarman

"It is better to deserve honors and not have them than to have them and not deserve them."
-Mark Twain

"It is better to die on your feet than to live on your knees!"
-Emiliano Zapata

False ideals cannot be shattered by criticism. Right ideals must take up the battle against them.
-Franz Werfel

"I am imagination. I can see what the eyes cannot see. I can hear what the ears cannot hear. I can feel what the heart cannot feel."
-Peter Nivio Zarlenga

Not armies, not nations, have advanced the race; but here and there, in the course of ages, an individual has stood up and cast his shadow over the world.
-Edwin Hubbell Chapin

To be nobody but yourself in a world which is doing its best day and night to make you everybody else means to fight the hardest battle which any human being can fight, and never stop fighting.
-E. E. (Edward Estlin) Cummings

"I may not have gone where I intended to go, but I think I have ended up where I intended to be."
-Douglas Adams

"Do not follow where the path may lead. Go instead where there is no path and leave a trail. Only those who will risk going too far can possibly find out how far one can go."
-TS (Thomas Stearns) Eliot

"The hardest thing in life is to know which bridge to cross and which to burn."
-David Russell

I soon realized that poets do not compose their poems with knowledge, but by some inborn talent and by inspiration, like seers and prophets who also say many fine things without understanding of what they say.
-Plato 'Apology'

"Artistic temperament...sometimes seems a battleground, a dark angel of destruction and a bright angel of creativity wrestling."
-Madeleine L'Engle

“You belong in the dark with me, I am the king of night and you are my queen.”
–Vincent, Look for me by Moonlight

"The leader who exercises power with honor will work from the inside out, starting with himself."
-Blaine Lee

"The wicked leader is he who the people despise. The good leader is he who the people revere. The great leader is he who the people say, 'We did it ourselves.'"

"The ultimate leader is one who is willing to develop people to the point that they eventually surpass him or her in knowledge and ability."
-Fred A. Manske, Jr.

"Leaders are the ones who keep faith with the past, keep step with the present and keep the promise to posterity."
-Harold J. Seymore

That's what learning is, after all; not whether we lose the game, but how we lose and how we've changed because of it and what we take away from it that we never had before, to apply to other games. Losing, in a curious way, is winning.
-Richard Bach

"You just stood there screaming
Fearing no one was listening to you
They say the empty can rattles the most
The sound of your own voice must soothe you
Hearing only what you want to hear
And knowing only what you've heard
You, you're smothered in tragedy And you're out to save the world."
-James Hetfield

"Liberty is a harsh mistress. You cannot pick and choose what you like and dislike about her. Liberty will not change her principles for you, no matter how much you claim to love her. She will stand fast in her demands for total acceptance. If you can't receive her, she will recognize you as a false lover and leave you. And when you hear that door slam, it will take every tear in your eye, every ounce of blood in your veins, and all the nerve in your heart to win her back."
-Bill Masters

"Liberty means responsibility. That is why most men dread it."
-George Bernard Shaw

To live with the conscious knowledge of the shadow of uncertainty, with the knowledge that disaster or tragedy could strike at any time; to be afraid and to know and acknowledge your fear, and still to live creatively and with unstinting love: that is to live with grace.
-Peter Henry Abrahams

"Never be bullied into silence. Never allow yourself to be made a victim. Accept no one's definition of your life; define yourself."
-Harvey Fierstein

"Through me you pass into the city of woe:
Through me you pass into eternal pain:
Through me among the people lost for aye.
Justice the founder of my fabric moved:
To rear me was the task of power divine,
Supremest wisdom, and primeval love.
Before me things create were none, save things
Eternal, and eternal I shall endure.
All hope abandon, ye who enter here."
-Dante Alighieri

"Yet each man kills the thing he loves,
By each let this be heard,
Some do it with a bitter look,
Some with a flattering word,
The coward does it with a kiss,
The brave man with a sword!"
-Oscar Wilde

When by the Ruins oft I past
My sorrowing eyes aside did cast
And here and there the places spy
Where oft I sate and long did lie.
Here stood that Trunk, and there that chest,
There lay that store I counted best,
My pleasant things in ashes lie
And them behold no more shall I.
Under the roof no guest shall sit,
Nor at thy Table eat a bit.
No pleasant talk shall 'ere be told
Nor things recounted done of old.
No Candle 'ere shall shine in Thee,
Nor bridegroom's voice ere heard shall bee.
In silence ever shalt thou lie.
-Anne Bradstreet

"You must never feel badly about making mistakes," explained Reason quietly, "as long as you take the trouble to learn from them. For you often learn more by being wrong for the right reasons than you do by being right for the wrong reasons."
-Norton Juster

"Music is the divine way to tell beautiful, poetic things to the heart."
-Pablo Casals

"Music is your own experience, your thoughts, your wisdom. If you don't live it, it won't come out of your horn."
-Charlie Parker

We can rest contentedly in our sins and in our stupidities, and anyone who has watched gluttons shoveling down the most exquisite foods as if they did not know what they were eating will admit that we can ignore even pleasure. But pain insists upon being attended to. God whispers to us in our pleasures, speaks in our consciences, but shouts in our pains. It is his megaphone to rouse a deaf world.
-C.S. Lewis

When the habitually even-tempered suddenly fly into a passion, that explosion is apt to be more impressive than the outburst of the most violent amongst us.
-Margery Allingham

"All commend patience, but none can endure to suffer."
-Thomas Fuller

We don't see things as they are.
We see them as we are.
-Anais Nin

Perception is merely reality filtered through the prism of your soul.
-Christopher A. Ray

The beauty that addresses itself to the eyes is only the spell of the moment; the eye of the body is not always that of the soul.
-George Sand

You choose to go voluntarily into the fire. The blaze might well destroy you. But if you survive, every blow of the hammer will serve to shape your being. Every drop of water wrung from you will temper and strengthen your soul.
-Margaret Weis

All are lunatics, but he who can analyze his delusions, is called a philosopher.
-Ambrose Pierce

Poetry is an echo, asking a shadow to dance.
-Carl Sandburg

"Poetry is an orphan of silence. The words never quite equal the experience behind them."
-Charles Simic

Wisdom comes only when you stop looking for it and start living the life the Creator intended for you.
-American Indian Proverb

A people without faith in themselves cannot survive.
-American Indian Proverb

I hope and hoping feeds my pain
I weep and weeping feeds my failing heart
I laugh but the laughter does not pass within
I burn but the burning makes no mark outside
-Niccolo Machiavelli

"Regret for the things we did can be tempered by time; it is regret for the things we did not do that is inconsolable."
-Sydney J. Harris

"I do not feel obliged to believe that the same God who has endowed us with sense, reason, and intellect has intended us to forgo their use."
-Galileo Galilei

"The most important things are the hardest things to say. They are the things you get ashamed of, because words diminish them - words shrink things that seemed limitless when they were in your head to no more than the living size then they're brought out. But it's more than that, isn't it? The most important things lie too close to wherever your secret heart is buried, like landmarks to a treasure your enemies would love to steal away. And you may make revelations that cost you dearly only to have people look at you in a funny way, not understanding what you've said at all, or why you thought it was so important that you almost cried while you were saying it. That's the worst, I think. When the secret stays locked within not for want of a teller but for want of an understanding ear."
-Different Seasons by Stephen King

At first we raced through space, like shadows and light; her rants, my raves; her dark hair, my blond; black dresses, white. She a purple-black African-violet-dark butterfly and I a white moth. We were two wild ponies, Dawn and Midnight, the wind electrifying our manes and our hooves quaking the city; we were photo negatives of each other, together making the perfect image of a girl.
-Francesca Lia Block

I am only one,
But still I am one.
I cannot do everything,
But still I can do something;
And because I cannot do everything
I will not refuse to do the something that I can do.
-Edward Everett Hale

"To be a revolutionary you have to be a human being. You have to care about people who have no power."
-Jane Fonda

"I shall be as secret as the grave."
-Miguel de Cervantes

"The soul that is within me no man can degrade."
-Frederick Douglass

"You should examine yourself daily. If you find faults, you should correct them. When you find none, you should try even harder."
-Israel Zangwill

"What difference is there between us, save a restless dream that follows my soul but fears to come near you?"
-Kahlil Gibran

"He never is alone that is accompanied with noble thoughts."
-John Fletcher

When your soul quits taking refuge in the pretenses and stops being a fugitive from Spirit, it will catch on fire and serve as a beacon lighting the way to your calling, your destiny, to being completely and entirely you.
-John Renesch

Sometimes what seems like surrender isn't surrender at all. It's about what's going on in our hearts. About seeing clearly the way life is and accepting it and being true to it, whatever the pain, because the pain of not being true to it is far, far greater.
-Nicholas Evans

I have told you that, no matter how many times you have refused to enter the sanctuary, you have only to knock and the door will be opened to you. I have said to you "Ask and it shall be given you," but you refuse to believe in me. You think that someone is counting your sins, your moments of indecision or recalcitrance, but it is not true. You are the only one counting. I say to you brother, "stop counting, stop making excuses, stop pretending that the door is locked. I am here at the threshold. Reach out and take my hand and we will open the door and walk through together." I am the door to love without conditions. When you walk through, you too will be the door.
-Paul Ferinni

If I supply you with a thought, you may remember it and you may not. But if I can make you think a thought for yourself, I have indeed added to your stature.
-Elbert Hubbard

"The mind is not a vessel to be filled but a fire to be kindled."

Geniuses are like thunderstorms. They go against the wind, terrify people, cleanse the air.
-Siren Kierkegaard

It is better to have less thunder in the mouth and more lightning in the hand.
-American Indian Proverb

Time is too slow for those who wait
too swift for those who fear
too long for those who grieve,
too short for those who rejoice,
but for those who love, time is eternity.
Hours fly, flowers die,
new days, new ways pass by,
Love stays.
-Henry Van Dyke

"When I tell the truth, it is not for the sake of convincing those who do not know it, but for the sake of defending those that do."
-William Blake

Men occasionally stumble over the truth, but most of them pick themselves up and hurry off as if nothing ever happened.
-Sir Winston Churchill

"It is hard to believe that a man is telling the truth when you know that you would lie if you were in his place."
-H. L. Mencken

"Who has not hoped
To outrage an enemy's dignity?
Who has not been swept
By the wish to hurt?
And who has not thought that the impersonal world
Deserves no better than to be destroyed
By one fabulous sign of his displeasure?"
-Jacob Bronowski

"You can tell whether a man is clever by his answers. You can tell whether a man is wise by his questions."
-Naguib Mahfouz

"I still have a long way to go, Ben," she said at last. "It still happens to me--the rage. Mostly I'm fine. But something can happen, just any stupid thing, and I'll lose it again. I'm never sure--" She looked quickly at him and smiled. "I'm not so afraid of it as I used to be. I mean, I know I can make choices even when I'm feeling it . . . so it's not like before. But Ben--I need to do this by myself. When I'm with you I feel so--"
"I thought you felt like when you were alone," he said, trying to speak lightly.
"I do," she said. "That's what I mean. It's like we're part of each other. . . . But we're not, Ben."
"But why--"
The sun caught in her dark eyes and he saw himself reflected in their depths. "Oh Ben. I love you so much," she cried. "But I get lost in you--it's like I want to be you! Don't you understand? I can't stand up to that yet. I hardly know how to be me."
-Deborah Savage, Under a Different Sky

"And at the place where time stands still, one sees lovers kissing in the shadows of buildings, in a frozen embrace that will never let go. The loved one will never take his arms from where they are now, will never give back the bracelet of memories, will never journey far from his lover, will never place himself in danger in self-sacrifice, will never fail to show his love, will never become jealous, will never fall in love with someone else, will never lose the passion of this instant in time."
-Alan Lightman "Einstein's Dreams"

You're not telling me anything I don't know already. "Relax your body, and the rest of you will lighten up." What's the point of saying that to me? If I relaxed my body now, I'd fall apart. I've always lived like this, and it's the only way I know how to go on living. If I relaxed for a second, I'd never find my way back. I'd go to pieces, and the pieces would be blown away. Why can't you see that?
-Haruki Murakami "Norwegian Wood"

"Make it personal, tell the truth, and then write 'Burn this' on it."
-Lanford Wilson "Burn This"

"Life will break you. Nobody can protect you from that, and living alone won't either, for solitude will also break you with its yearning. You have to love. You have to feel. It is the reason you are here on earth. You are here to risk your heart. You are here to be swallowed up. And when it happens that you are broken, or betrayed, or left, or hurt, or death brushes near, let yourself sit by an apple tree and listen to the apples falling all around you in heaps, wasting their sweetness. Tell yourself that you tasted as many as you could."
-Louise Erdich "The Painted Drum"

"You know, some things don't matter that much. Like the color of a house. How big is that in the overall scheme of life? But lifting a person's heart--now, that matters. The whole problem with people is--"
"They don't know what matters and what doesn't."
"I was gonna say, The problem is they know what matters, but they don't choose it...The hardest thing on earth is choosing what matters."
-Sue Monk Kidd "The Secret Life of Bees"

"Definitions are limiting. Limitations are deadening. To limit oneself is a kind of suicide. To limit another is a kind of murder."
-Tom Robbins, "Even Cowgirls Get the Blues"

Some say the world will end in fire,
Some say in ice.
From what I've tasted of desire,
I hold with those who favor fire.
But if it had to perish twice,
I think I know enough of hate
To know that for destruction ice
Is also great
And would suffice.
"Fire and Ice," Robert Frost

Hence, viper thoughts, that coil around my mind,
Reality's dark dream!
I turn from you, and listen to the wind,
Which long has raved unnoticed. What a scream
Of agony by torture lengthened out...
-Samuel Taylor Coleridge, "Dejection: An Ode"

'You teach me now how cruel you've been - cruel and false. Why did you despise me? Why did you betray your own heart, Cathy? I have not one word of comfort - you deserve this. You have killed yourself. Yes, you may kiss me, and cry; and wring out my kisses and tears. They'll blight you - they'll damn you. You loved me - then what right had you to leave me? What right - answer me - for the poor fancy you felt for Linton? Because misery, and degradation, and death, and nothing that God or Satan could inflict would have parted us, you, of your own will, did it. I have not broken your heart - you have broken it - and in breaking it, you have broken mine. So much the worse for me, that I am strong. Do I want to live? What kind of living will it be when you - oh, God! Would you like to live with your soul in the grave?'
'Let me alone. Let me alone!,' sobbed Catherine. 'If I've done wrong, I'm dying for it. It is enough! You left me too; but I won't upbraid you! I forgive you. Forgive me!'
'It is hard to forgive, and to look at those eyes, and feel those wasted hands,' he answered, 'Kiss me again; and don't let me see your eyes! I forgive what you have done to me. I love my murdered - but yours! How can I?'
They were silent - their faces hid against each other, and washed by each other's tears.
-Emily Brontë "Wuthering Heights"

"When we made love, I sensed that she wanted to push me to the point of feeling things I had never felt before, to the point where I could no longer stand it. She also gave herself in a way she had never done before. She didn't abandon all reserve, she never did that. But it was as if she wanted us to drown together."
-The Reader by Bernard Schlink

"If equal affection cannot be, let the more loving one be me."

I want you to know
one thing.
You know how this is:
if I look
at the crystal moon, at the red branch
of the slow autumn at my window,
if I touch
near the fire
the impalpable ash
or the wrinkled body of the log,
everything carries me to you,
as if everything that exists,
aromas, light, metals,
were little boats that sail
toward those isles of yours that wait for me.
Well, now,
if little by little you stop loving me
I shall stop loving you little by little.
If suddenly
you forget me
do not look for me,
for I shall already have forgotten you.
If you think it long and mad,
the wind of banners
that passes through life,
and you decide
to leave me at the shore
of the heart where I have roots,
that on that day,
at that hour,
I shall lift my arms
and my roots will set off
to seek another land.
if each day,
each hour,
you feel that you are destined for me
with implacable sweetness,
if each day a flower
climbs up to your lips to seek me,
ah my love, ah my own,
in me all that fire is repeated,
in me nothing is extinguished or forgotten,
my love feeds on your love, beloved,
and as long as you live it will be in your arms
without leaving mine.
-Pablo Neruda, "If You Forget Me"

I can't hold you and I can't leave you,
and sorting the reasons to leave you or hold you,
I find an intangible one to love you,
and many tangible ones to forgo you.
As you won't change, nor let me forgo you,
I shall give my heart a defence against you,
so that half shall always be armed to abhor you,
though the other half be ready to adore you.
Then, if our love, by loving flourish,
let it not in endless feuding perish;
let us speak no more in jealousy and suspicion.
He offers not part, who would all receive--
so know that when it is your intention
mine shall be to make believe.
-Juana Ines De La Cruz, "I Can't Hold You And I Can't Leave You"

The fist clenched round my heart
loosens a little, and I gasp
brightness; but it tightens
again. When have I ever not loved
the pain of love? But this has moved
past love to mania. This has the strong
clench of the madman, this is
gripping the ledge of unreason, before
plunging howling into the abyss.
Hold hard then, heart. This way at least you live.
-Derek Walcott, "The Fist"

I wrung my hands under my dark veil . . .
"Why are you pale; what makes you reckless?"
---Because I have made my loved one drunk
with an astringent sadness.
I'll never forget. He went out, reeling;
his mouth was twisted, desolate . . .
I ran downstairs, not touching the banisters,
and followed him as far as the gate.
And shouted, choking: "I meant it all
in fun. Don't leave me, or I'll die of pain."
He smiled at me --- oh so calmly, terribly ---
and said, "Why don't you get out of the rain?"
-Anna Akhmatova, "I Wrung My Hands Under My Dark Veil"

Above all things, never be afraid. The enemy who forces you to retreat is himself
afraid of you at that very moment. - Andre Maurois

But in the midst of such events, she realized, there could never be any logic to the human violence without the distance of time. For now it would be reported, filed in Geneva, but no one could ever give meaning to it. She used to believe that meaning allowed a person a door to escape grief and fear. But she saw that those who were slammed and stained by violence lost the power of language and logic. It was the way to abandon emotion, a last protection for the self.
-Anil's Ghost, Michael Ondaatje

I repeat slowly, "Life is cruel.... Life is so cruel.... We cry for the ones we lose and continue to live. We eat, sleep, hope, dream, laugh, love, and hate. We do not turn into stone and stop feeling. We suffer from pain and sorrow and go on living. But there must be a limit. How much can we endure and still say, life must go on."
-The Cage, by Ruth Minsky Sender

'I can't help but dream about a kind of criticism that would try not to judge but to bring an oeuvre, a book, a sentence, an idea to life; it would light fires, watch the grass grow, listen to the wind, and catch the sea foam in the breeze and scatter it. It would multiply not judgments but signs of existence; it would summon them, drag them from their sleep. Perhaps it would invent them sometimes--all the better. All the better. Criticism that hands down sentences sends me to sleep; I'd like a criticism of scintillating leaps of the imagination. It would not be sovereign or dressed in red. It would bear the lightning of possible storms.'

'It is understandable that some people should weep over the present void and hanker instead, in the world of ideas, after a little monarchy. But those who, for once in their lives, have found a new tone, a new way of looking, a new way of doing, those people, I believe, will never feel the need to lament that the world is error, that history is filled with people of no consequence, and that it is time for others to keep quiet so that at least the sound of their disapproval may be heard...'
-'The Masked Philosopher'

"Why had no one told me that my body would become a battlefield, a sacrifice, a test? Why did I not know that birth is the pinnacle where women discover the courage to become mothers? But of course, there is no way to tell this or hear it. Until you are the woman on the bricks, you have no idea how death stands in the corner, ready to play his part."
-The Red Tent, Anita Diamant

Love is never any better than the lover. Wicked people love wickedly, violent people love violently, weak people love weakly, stupid people love stupidly, but the love of a free man is never safe. There is no gift for the beloved. The lover alone possesses his gift of love. The loved one is shorn, neutralized, frozen in the glare of the lover's inward eye.
-"The Bluest Eye" Toni Morrison.

If people bring so much courage to this world, the world has to kill them to break them, so of course it kills them. The world breaks every one and afterward many are strong at the broken places. But those that will not break, it kills.
It kills the very good and the very gentle and the very brave impartially. If you are none of these you can be sure it will kill you too but there will be no special hurry.
-A Farewell to Arms, Heminway

"Do not try to satisfy your vanity by teaching a great many things. Awaken people's curiosity. It is enough to open minds; do not overload them. Put there just a spark. If there is some good inflammable stuff, it will catch fire."
-Anatole France

"I hate the uneducated and the ignorant. I hate the pompous and the phoney. I hate the jealous and the resentful. I hate the crabbed and the mean and the petty. I hate all ordinary dull little people who aren't ashamed of being dull and little. I hate what G.P calls the New People, the new-class people with their cars and their money and their tellies and their stupid vulgarities and their stupid crawling imitation of the bourgeoisie.
I love honesty and freedom and giving. I love making, I love doing, I love being to the full, I love everything which is not sitting and watching and copying and dead at heart."
-The Collector, by John Fowles

It's easy to have faith when there's no reason to question it. It's when one has reason to doubt that faith proves its value.
-The Galactic Whirlpool by David Gerrold

"Black is the beauty of the brightest day;
The golden ball of heaven's eternal fire,
That danc'd with glory on the silver waves,
Now wants the fuel that inflam'd his beams,
And all with faintness and for foul disgrace,
He binds his temples with a frowning cloud,
Ready to darken earth with endless night."
-Christopher Marlowe, Tamburlaine, Part Two

"Some ideas are not born of logic and good sense. They are made of clouds and cobwebs. They sprout from nowhere and feed on excitement, sprinkled with adventure-juice and the sweet flavour of the forbidden. The psyche moves from the realms of the ordinary and takes a delicate step towards the territory of the unknown. We know that we shouldn't and that is exactly why we do."
-'Guitar Highway Rose' by Brigid Lowry

"My life has long resembled something that is about to end. It's strange but that's the way it is. Sometimes in these final days, these sombre days, weighed down by a desperately motionless sky, the certainty that the days are approaching when greyness will re-establish it's autumnal empire rises up inside me until it becomes dread. Don't you feel that it is already growing cooler?
Today I feel that I have nothing but my past left to live. And yet I have not surrendered, I still search for the face borrowed from the tender dreams of adolescence, a face to love. And, with my forehead pressed to the window like a watchman on the lookout for despair, I attempt to picture it."
"Are you afraid of death?"
"Yes, obviously."
-Lovers or Something Like it by Florian Zeller

In the case of good books, the point is not how many of them you can get through, but rather how many can get through to you.
-Mortimer J. Adler, philosopher, educator and author

We all carry within us our places of exile, our crimes, and our ravages. But our task is not to unleash them on the world; it is to fight them in ourselves and in others. Rebellion, the secular will not to surrender of which Barrès speaks, is still, today, at the basis of our struggle. Origin of form, source of real life, it keeps us always erect in the savage formless movement of history.
-Albert Camus, The Rebel

"The music she played was the kind that sawed through you, cutting into the secret chambers of your heart and setting the sadness free."
-The Secret Life of Bees, Sue Monk Kidd

"I have noticed that if you look carefully at people's eyes the first five seconds they look at you, the truth of their feelings will shine through for just an instant before it flickers away."
-The Secret Life of Bees, Sue Monk Kidd

"And I can't say it now. I can't say what I want to say. I hold you-- I-- I clutch you, because I love you so desperately, and time is so short, we have such a little time in which to live and be young, even at best, and I put my arms around you and hold you because I want to love you while I can and I want to know I'm loving you, only it doesn't mean anything because you aren't afraid. You aren't frightened so that you want to clutch it all while you can."
-Madeleine l'Engle, Camilla.

You don't live all your minutes at once Angel reminded herself silently. You just live the one you're in. You can make it through one minute.
You don't have to be strong for that. Just one minute. One minute at a time.
-"A Woman Without Lies" Elizabeth Lowell

"I will love you not just for your wit and talent and beauty, but simply because you are you, with no strings attached. I love you for who you are deep in your soul, not for the color of your eyes or the length of your legs or the size of your checkbook. The longing is that the lover admire us stripped of our external assets, appreciating the essence of our being without accomplishments, ready to repeat the unconditional love said by some to exist between parent and child. The real self is what one can freely choose to be, and if a birthmark arises on our forehead or age withers us or recession bankrupts us, then we must be excused for accidents that have damaged what is only our surface. And even if we are beautiful and rich, then we do not wish to be loved on account of these things, for they may fail us, and with them, love. I would prefer you to compliment me on my brain than on my face, but if you must, then I would rather you comment on my smile [motor and muscle-controlled] then on my nose [static and tissue-based]. The desire is that I be loved even if I lost everything, leaving nothing but "me," this mysterious "me" taken to be the self at its weakest, most vulnerable point. Do you love me enough that I may be weak with you? Everyone loves strength, but do you love me for my weakness? That is the real test. Do you love me stripped of everything that might be lost, for only the things I will have forever?"
-Alain de Botton, On Love: A Novel

Break a vase, and the love that reassembles the fragments is stronger than that love which took its symmetry for granted when it was whole.
-Derek Walcott, Nobel Lecture

If I read a book and it makes my whole body so cold no fire can ever warm me, I know that is poetry. If I feel physically as if the top of my head were taken off, I know that is poetry. These are the only ways I know it.
-Life and Letters of Emily Dickinson

"I was a little girl who grew up too fast for her own good. But the suffering has made me the person I am today. I value life and people. I am more sensitive to the needs of others, and I think I am more understanding of other people's suffering. My life experiences have proven that through the dark shadows of life we can grow emotionally and learn to love."
-"Peace" Neha Lall

"I want to protect you." "We give each other courage." The mist came into the room. Djuna thought: She's such a hurt woman. She is one who does not know what she suffers from, or why, or how to overcome it. She is all unconscious, motion, music. She is afraid to see, to analyze her nature. She think that nature just is and that nothing can be done about it. She would have never invented ships to conquer the sea, machines to create light where there was darkness. She would never have harnessed water power, electric power. She is like the primitive. She thinks it is all beyond her power. She accepts chaos. She suffers mutely..
-Anaïs Nin, Ladders to Fire

Everyone thinks writers must know more about the inside of the human head, but that is wrong. They know less, that's why they write. Trying to find out what everyone else takes for granted.
-Margaret Atwood

It's not love we don't wish
to fall into, but that fear.
This word is not enough but it will
have to do. It's a single
vowel in this metallic
silence, a mouth that says
O again and again in wonder
and pain, a breath, a finger
grip on a cliffside. You can
hold on or let go.
-Margaret Atwood, "Variations On The Word Love"

I strangle my words as easily as I do my tears
I stifle my screams as frequently as I flash my smile
it means nothing
I am cotton candy on a rainy day
the unrealized dream of an idea unborn
I share with the painters the desire
To put a three-dimensional picture
On a one-dimensional surface
-Nikki Giovanni

They simply never understand,
do they,
that sometimes solitude is
one of the most beautiful things
on earth?
-'What Bothers Them Most' by Charles Bukowski

How many loved your moments of glad grace,
And loved your beauty with love false or true,
But one man loved the pilgrim soul in you,
And loved the sorrows of your changing face.
-"When You Are Old" William Butler Yeats

Passion will not be commanded. It is no genie to grant us three wishes when we let it loose. It commands us and very rarely in the way we would choose.
I was angry. Whoever it is you fall in love with for the first time, not just love but be in love with, is the one who will always make you angry, the one you can't be logical about. It may be that you are settled in another place, it may be that you are happy, but the one who took your heart wields final power.
-Jeanette Winterson, The Passion

"I didn't know what hate felt like, not the hate that comes after love. It's huge and desperate and longs to be proved wrong. And every day it's proved right it grows a little more monstrous. If the love was passion, the hate will be obsession. A need to see the once-loved weak and cowed and beneath pity. Disgust is close and dignity is far away. The hate is not only for the once loved, it's for yourself too; how could you ever have loved this?"
-Jeanette Winterson, The Passion

"For this love you shall be requited a thousand and a thousand times over, no matter what turn your life will take. This love, I am sure of it, will weave itself through the tapestry of your evolving being as one of the most important threads of your experiences, your disappointments, and your joys."
-"Letters To A Young Poet" Rainer Maria Rilke

"You make me sick," she whispered. "People have always told me about this feeling, but I've never had it. It's awful." She spoke with empty eyes, as if it were already two years later.
We'd been going out together for about eighteen months, and I don't know why but she loved the holy hell out of me.
"When you go back to your pea-brained friends and tell them how you've left me and how unstable I am, and they will tell you what psycho bitch I am and all that garbage, just remember that all they are is glad you're back drinking beer with them. They don't know you. They don't give a shit about you. And I do. I love you with my whole soul best, and if somebody else ever loves you as good as me, please remember there's nothing you have to do, just let them." She choked out a short laugh. "You're my greatest disappointment." She didn't kiss me good-bye, she just gave me another empty half-cocked smile, turned, and walked down the hall, her black leather shoes clacking on the shiny hospital floor.
-'Ash Wednesday' by Ethan Hawke

"The best thing for being sad," replied Merlin, beginning to puff and blow, "is to learn something. That's the only thing that never fails. You may grow old and trembling in your anatomies, you may lie awake at night listening to the disorder of your veins, you may miss your only love, you may see the world about you devastated by evil lunatics, or know your honour trampled in the sewers of baser minds. There is only one thing for it then - to learn. Learn why the world wags and what wags it. That is the only thing which the mind can never exhaust, never alienate, never be tortured by, never fear or distrust, and never dream of regretting. Learning is the only thing for you. Look what a lot of things there are to learn." Ropo Oguntimehin Education is a companion which no future can depress, no crime can destroy, no enemy can alienate it and no nepotism can enslave.
-T. H. White "Once and Future King"

"If all the world hated you, and believed you wicked, while your own conscience approved you, and absolved you from guilt, you would not be without friends."
-Charlottle Bronte, Jane Erye

"You don't know how wonderful a feeling it gives you when you know somebody loves you and that's just the way it is. You can be good, you can be a devil, and still that somebody loves you. You can be weak, you can be strong. You can know a heap or nearly nothing. That kind of love, when you think about it, just seems like some kind of puzzle, and you can spend a lifetime trying to figure it out. If you puffed up with vanity, you can't help but think what they love is something you created yourself. Or maybe it's your money or your car. But there's something...it's like how you love a certain place. You just do, that's all. And if you're lucky, while you're on this earth, you get to visit it. And the place knows your love, you feel."
-Alice Walker, The Temple of My Familiar

It used to be that when I laid my head
And body with it down by you in bed
You did not turn from me nor fall to Sleep
But turn to fall between my arms instead
-B Negative, X.J. Kennedy

Later they lay down next to each other in the wide bed. He observed her. She was lying on her back, her head pressed into the pillow, her chin slightly lifted and her eyes fixed on the ceiling. In the characteristic tension of her body (she always reminded him of a taut string, and he had once told her that she had the soul of a violin) he suddenly glimpsed the whole essence of her being. Yes, it happened now and again (these were miraculous moments): a single motion or gesture of hers would suddenly reveal to him the entire history of her body and soul. These were moments of a kind of absolute clairvoyance and absolute pathos. This woman who had sacrificed everything for his sake, read his mind and understood all his thoughts so that he could talk to her about Armstrong or Stravinsky, about trifles and serious problems, she was closer to him than anyone on earth....He imagined this sweet body, this sweet face being no more, and he felt he would not be able to survive her death by a single day. He knew that he was ready to defend her to his last breath, that he was capable of sacrificing his life for her.
But this surge of boundless love was fleeting, for his mind was completely filled with anxiety and fear. He lay next to Kamila. He stroked her face, but he felt hundreds and hundreds of miles away.
-The Farewell Party by Milan Kundera

Thinking can hurt your chances, and I intend to last.
-A Handmaid's Tale, Margaret Atwood

"Never throw love away, never neglect it. Never assume you'll find better love somewhere else. Take it wherever you're lucky enough to find it, and always try to return it in kind."
-Patricia Gaffney, The Saving Graces

"It's not that I literally think I'm a faerie. It's just that I feel so different from most people. And this idea of a race living underground in caverns, spending all their days dancing and playing the fiddle and eating flowers and reciting poetry and sharing their dreams, that to me sounds much more real than the way people live in this world, hating and fighting and wanting and hurting."
-Violet and Claire by Francesca Lia Block

"After a while, you learn the subtle difference between holding a hand and chaining a soul and you learn that love doesn't mean leaning and company doesn't mean security. And you begin to learn that kisses aren't contracts and presents aren't promises. And you begin to accept your defeats with your head up and your eyes open, with the grace of an adult, not the grief of a child. And you learn to build all your roads on today because tomorrow's ground is too uncertain for plans. After a while you learn that even sunshine burns if you get too much. So plan your own garden and decorate your own soul, instead of waiting for someone to bring you flowers. And you learn that you really can endure... That you really are strong. And that you really do have worth."
-Veronica A. Shoffehall

"She was looking into my eyes the way she had of looking that made you wonder whether she really saw out of her own eyes. They would look on and on after everyone else's eyes in the world would have stopped looking. She looked as though there was nothing on earth she would not look at like that, and really she was afraid of so many things."
-The Sun Also Rises, Ernest Hemingway

"You save yourself or you remain unsaved."
-Alice Sebold, Lucky

That must be our cure, to be no more.
Sad cure, for who would lose,
Though full of pain, this intellectual being,
Those thought that wander through eternity,
To perish rather, swallowed up and lost
In the wide womb of uncreated night?
-from Paradise Lost

Family quarrels are bitter things. They don't go according to any rules. They're not like aches or wounds; they're more like splits in the skin that won't heal because there's not enough material.
-Babylon Revisited by F. Scott Fitzgerald

"There is a language older by far and deeper than words. It is the language of bodies, of body on body, wind on snow, rain on trees, wave on stone. It is the language of dream, gesture, symbol, memory. We have forgotten this language. We do not even remember that it exists."
-A Language Older Than Words by Derrick Jensen

One of the reasons why we crave love, and seek it so desperately, is that love is the only cure for loneliness, and shame, and sorrow. But some feelings sink so deep into the heart that only loneliness can help you find them again. Some truths about yourself are so painful that only shame can help you live with them. And some things are just so sad that only your soul can do the crying for you.
-Shantaram, by Gregory David Roberts

And tonight our skins, our bones,
that have survived our fathers,
will meet, delicate in the hold,
fastened together in an intricate
lock. Then one of us will shout,
"My need is more desperate!" and
I will eat you slowly with kisses
even though the killer in you
has gotten out.
-Anne Sexton

It seems only yesterday I used to believe
there was nothing under my skin but light.
If you cut me I could shine.
But now when I fall upon the sidewalks of life,
I skin my knees. I bleed.
-Billy Collins

For everything you have missed, you have gained something else.
-Ralph Waldo Emerson

But the beginning of things, of a world especially, is necessarily vague, tangled, chaotic, and exceedingly disturbing. How few of us ever emerge from such beginning! How many souls perish in its tumult!
The voice of the sea is seductive; never ceasing, whispering, clamoring, murmuring, inviting the soul to wander for a spell in abysses of solitude; to lose itself in mazes of inward contemplation.
The voice of the sea speaks to the soul. The touch of the sea is sensuous, enfolding the body in its soft, close embrace.
-The Awakening, Kate Chopin

"They all count. But there are certain people you love who do something else;
they define how you classify what love is supposed to feel like.
These are the most important people in your life...but there's still one more tier to all this;
there is always that one person you love who becomes that definition.
It usually happens retrospectively, but it always happens eventually.
This is the person who unknowingly sets the template for what you will always love about other people,
even if some of those lovable qualities are self-destructive and unreasonable...
This is because the individual who embodies your personal definition of love does not really exist.
The person is real, and the feelings are real-- but you create the context. And context is everything.
The person who defines your understanding of love is not inherently different than anyone else,
and they're often just the person you happen to meet the first time you really, really want to love someone.
But that person still wins. They win, and you lose.
Because for the rest of your life, they will control how you feel about everyone else."
-Chuck Klosterman, Killing Yourself to Live

"Love makes hunters of us all."
-Wicked by Gregory Maguire

"We don't just get under each other's skin, we absorb people. Everyone we've ever loved remains with us, and we're invisibly changed for having known them. That will make some people feel queasy, I suppose, but it warms me."
-An Alchemy of Mind by Diane Ackerman

"The truly creative mind in any field is no more than this: A human creature born abnormally, inhumanely sensitive. To them a touch is a blow, a sound is a noise, a misfortune is a tragedy, a joy is an ecstacy, a friend is a lover, a lover is a god, and failure is death. Add to this cruelly delicate organism the overpowering necessity to create, create, create--so that without the creating of music or poetry or books or buildings or something of meaning, their very breath is cut off.... They must create, must pour out creation. By some strange, unknown, inward urgency they are not really alive unless they are creating."
-An Alchemy of Mind by Diane Ackerman

"Bless originally meant redden with blood, as in sacrifice. Hence 'God bless you' literally means 'God bathe you in blood'."
-An Alchemy of Mind by Diane Ackerman
Bloody Demise of a Fallen Dream
13 August 2006 @ 09:06 pm
A student asks a teacher, "What is love?" The teacher said, "In order to answer your question, go to the padi field and choose the biggest padi and come back. But the rule is: you can go through them only once and cannot turn back to pick." The student went to the field, went through first row, saw one big padi, but he wonders... maybe there is a bigger one later. Then he saw another bigger one... but maybe there is a even bigger one waiting for him. Later, when he finished more than half of the padi field, he starts to realize that the padi is not as big as the previous one he saw, and he knows he has missed the biggest one, and regrets. So, he ended up going back to the teacher with an empty hand. The teacher told him, "...this is love... you keep looking for a better one, but when it's too late, you realise you have already missed the person...."
"What is marriage then?" the student asked. The teacher said, "in order to answer your question, go to the corn field and choose the biggest corn and come back. But the rule is: you can go through them only once and cannot turn back to pick. "The student went to the corn field, and this time he is careful not to repeat the previous mistake; when he reaches the middle of the field, he picks one medium corn that he feels satisfied with, and goes back to the teacher. The teacher told him, "this time when you were looking for a corn.... you look for one that is just nice, and you have faith and believe this is the best one you get.... and this is marriage."
I think most creative people I have met have a strong sense of inferiority they're battling all the time. It's probably one of the reasons why they went into writing, or painting, or acting to begin with.

"In every life, no matter how full or empty ones purse, there is tragedy. It is the one promise life always fulfills. Thus, happiness is a gift, and the trick is not to expect it, but to delight in it when it comes, and to add to other peoples store of it."

'What is it about men that makes women so lonely?'

"There is a certain part of all of us that lives outside of time. Perhaps we become aware of our age only at exceptional moments and most of the time we are ageless. In any case, the instant she turned, smiled, and waved to the young lifeguard (who couldn't control himself and burst out laughing), she was unaware of her age. The essence of her charm, independent of time, revealed itself for a second in that gesture and dazzled me. I was strangely moved."

"Why is it that we want so badly to memorialize ourselves? Even while we’re still alive. We wish to assert our existence, like dogs peeing on fire hydrants. We put on display our framed photographs, our parchment diplomas, our silver-plated cups; we monogram our linen, we carve our names on trees, we scrawl them on washroom walls. It’s all the same impulse. What do we hope from it? Applause, envy, respect? Or simply attention, of any kind we can get? At the very least, we want a witness. We can’t stand the idea of our own voices falling silent finally, like a radio running down."

"People cry at weddings for the same reason they cry at happy endings: because they so desperately want to believe in something they know is not credible."

"The only way you can write truth is to assume that what you set down will never be read. Not by any other person, and not even by yourself at some later date. Otherwise you begin excusing yourself. You must see the writing as emerging like a long scroll of ink from the index finger of your right hand; you must see your left hand erasing it."

"Whatever became of the moment when one first knew about death? There must have been one, a moment, in childhood, when it first occured to you that you don't go on for ever. It must have been shattering-- stamped into one's memory. And yet, I can't remember it. It never occured to me at all. What does one make of that? We must be born with an intution of mortality. Before we know the words for it, before we know that there are words, out we come, bloodied and squalling with the knowledge that for all the compasses in the world, there's only one direction, and time is its only measure."

"Waiting is painful. Forgetting is painful. But not knowing which to do is the worse kind of suffering.”

They wish to dissuade me
From all that the forces of Love urge me to.
They do not understand it, and I cannot explain it to them.
I must then live out what I am;
What Love counsels my spirit,
In this is my being: for this reason I will do my best.

One who walks in another’s tracks leaves no footprints.

To be great is to be misunderstood.

You spoke about things they couldn’t see
and so they laughed.

Yet to row up the dark river
against the current,
to take the unknown road
blindly, stubbornly,
and to search for words rooted
like the knotted olive tree—
let them laugh.
And to yearn for the other world to inhabit
today’s suffocating loneliness,
this ravaged present—
let them be.
–George Seferis, “Summer Solstice”

With the pride of the artist, you must blow against the walls of every power that exists the small trumpet of your defiance.

Our concern must be to live while we’re alive... to release our inner selves from the spiritual death that comes with living behind a facade designed to conform to external definitions of who and what we are.

Within you there is a stillness and a sanctuary to which you can retreat any time and be yourself.

And that was what now she often felt the need of—to think…to be silent; to be alone. All the being and the doing, expansive, glittering, vocal, evaporated; and one shrunk, with a sense of solemnity, to being oneself, a wedge-shaped core of darkness, something invisible to others. …When life sank down for a moment, the range of experience seemed limitless…The core of darkness could go anywhere, for no one saw it. They could not stop it, she thought, exulting. There was freedom, there was peace, there was, most welcome of all, a summoning together, a resting on a platform of stability.

Isolation and belonging are not absolute, provable states of being. They arise completely out of the nothingness within you; you measure their dimensions against your own firm or shaky sense of who you are.

And if the soul
Is to know itself
It is into a soul
That it must look:
The stranger and the enemy, we’ve seen him in the mirror.
–George Seferis, Part 4, “Argonauts,” from “Mythistorema”

It is as though some old part of yourself wakes up in you, terrified, useless in the life you have, its skills and habits destructive but intact, and what is left of the present you, the person you have become, wilts and shrivels in sadness or despair: the person you have become is only a thin shell over this other, more eclectic and endangered self. The strongest, the least digested parts of your experience can rise up and put you back where you were when they occurred; all the rest of you stands back and weeps.

To rid ourselves of our shadows—who we are—we must step into either total light or total darkness.

"It is difficult for a woman to define her feelings in language which is chiefly made by men to express theirs."

"The best remedy for those who are afraid, lonely or unhappy is to go outside, somewhere where they can be quiet, alone with the heavens, nature... Because only then does one feel that all is as it should be…amidst the simple beauty of nature. As long as this exists, and it certainly always will, I know that then there will always be comfort for every sorrow, whatever the circumstances may be. And I firmly believe that nature brings solace in all troubles."

"Sometimes I get lonesome for a storm. A fullblown storm where everything changes. "

"…the blood-rhythms of wilderness which remain in us (as the old seas and oceans remain in us) are declaring, in response to the increasing instability of the outside forces that are working against us, the need for reconnection to rhythms that are stable and natural. And no matter whether those rhythms are found in a city, or in a garden, or in a relationship, or in the wilderness—it is the need and desire for them that we are recognizing and searching for, and I can feel it, the notion that settling-in and stand-making is the way to achieve or rediscover these rhythms. I can sense a turning-away from the idea, once pulsing in our own blood, that drifting or running is the answer, perhaps because the rhythms we need are becoming so hard to find, out in the fragmented worlds of both nature and man. We can find these rhythms within ourselves."

There is a pleasure in the pathless woods,
There is a rapture on the lonely shore,
There is a society where none intrudes,
By the deep sea, and music in its roar:
I love not man the less, but nature more.
–Lord Byron, “Childe Harold’s Pilgrimage”

You ask me why I dwell in the green mountain;
I smile and make no reply for my heart is free to care.
As the peach blossom flows down the stream and is gone
into the unknown,
I have a world apart that is among no one.
–Li Po, “Question and Answer Among the Mountains”

"Everything in the world has a hidden meaning…
Men, animals, trees, stars, they are all hieroglyphics.
When you see them you do not understand them.
You think they are really men, animals, trees, stars.
It is only years later that you understand."

"To find the universal elements enough; to find the air and the water exhilarating; to be refreshed by a morning walk or an evening saunter...to be thrilled by the stars at night; to be elated over a bird’s nest or a wildflower in spring—these are some of the rewards of the simple life."

"The poetry of the earth is never dead."

What would the world be, once bereft
Of wet and wildness? Let them be left,
O let them be left, wildness and wet,
Long live the weeds and the wildness yet.
–Gerard Manley Hopkins, “Inversnaid”

"What would happen if one woman told the truth about her life? The world would split open."

"Men grow accustomed to and, over time, dependent on girls and women living at half-mast. So when men encounter women such as myself who run full steam ahead, I find they have a panic and bolt response, seeking refuge in the arms of some safe young lass who plays by the rules (accompanying manual included). Everything that makes me unappealing to most men, however, is exactly what makes men totally hot to most women. Women, after all, have been encouraged to crave a developed human being."

"Because I am a woman, I must make unusual efforts to succeed. If I fail, no one will say, “She doesn’t have what it takes.” They will say, “Women don’t have what it takes.”"

"I feel like there’s something innate in women, the ability to be cruel and competitive with each other in this weird, invisible way."

"Some of us are becoming the men we wanted to marry."

10,000,000 witches, foothounds, and wives
tear through me
“This is what he did to me
don’t let this be
fight on, though us your free.”
And Eve,
subjugated sister
stands by my side
slips her soul into mine.
At her voice, bestowed with institutional power,
the others, disgusted, flee.
–Lennie St. Luce, “Separated”

"Dark, dark! The horror of darkness, like a shroud, wraps me and bears me on through mist and cloud."

"I am alone and miserable; man will not associate with me; but one as deformed and horrible as myself would not deny herself to me. My companion must be of the same species and have the same defects. This being you must create."

"I have learned not to think little of any one's belief, no matter how strange it may be. I have tried to keep an open mind, and it is not the ordinary things of life that could close it, but the strange things, the extraordinary things, the things that make one doubt if they be mad or sane."

"There was something awesome in the thought of the solitary mortal standing by the open window and summoning in from the gloom outside the spirits of the nether world."

"It was a very tall man, if, indeed, it might be called a man, for the gaunt bones were protruding through the corroding flesh, and the features were of a leaden hue. A winding-sheet was wrapped round the figure, and formed a hood over the head, from under the shadow of which two fiendish eyes, deep set in their grisly sockets, blazed and sparkled like red-hot coals."

From childhood's hour I have not been
As others were; I have not seen
As others saw; I could not bring
My passions from a common spring.
From the same source I have not taken
My sorrow; I could not awaken
My heart to joy at the same tone;
And all I loved, I loved alone.
Then- in my childhood, in the dawn
Of a most stormy life- was drawn
From every depth of good and ill
The mystery which binds me still:
From the torrent, or the fountain,
From the red cliff of the mountain,
From the sun that round me rolled
In its autumn tint of gold,
From the lightning in the sky
As it passed me flying by,
From the thunder and the storm,
And the cloud that took the form
(When the rest of Heaven was blue)
Of a demon in my view.
-Edgar Allen Poe, Alone

"Tears slid from her dress like rain from glass. The white cloth could not be stained. It turned the blood and broken flesh aside, just as it had the dust. But her hands were different, thought Alice May. Her hands would never be clean."

"We do not require company. The opposite: in varying degrees, it bores us, drains us, makes our eyes glaze over. Overcomes us like a steamroller. Of course, the rest of the world doesn’t understand."

"Darkness and pressure, here where the water is as cold and hard as steel. He is bright himself, so bright that he hurts my eyes and I must lid them and turn away."

"I know, but then I am not alive. Yet not dead. Something in between, hovering in the twilight, betwixt wakefulness and sleep, caught on the boundary, pinned to the board, unable to go back, unable to go forward."

"It was as if, at moments, we were perpetually coming into sight of subjects before which we must stop short, turning suddenly out of alleys that we perceived to be blind, closing with a little bang that made us look at each other--for, like all bangs, it was something louder than we had intended--the doors we had indiscreetly opened."

"There is a chill in the air after dark, and we had all drawn close to the blaze. The night was moonless, but there were some stars, and one could see for a little distance across the plain. Well, suddenly out of the darkness, out of the night, there swooped something with a swish like an aeroplane. The whole group of us were covered for an instant by a canopy of leathery wings, and I had a momentary vision of a long, snake-like neck, a fierce, red, greedy eye, and a great snapping beak, filled, to my amazement, with little, gleaming teeth."

"I don't remember forms or faces now, but I know the girl was beautiful. I know she was; for in the bright moonlight nights, when I start from my sleep, and all is quiet about me, I see, standing still and motionless in one corner of this cell, a slight and wasted figure with long black hair, which streaming down her back, stirs with no earthly wind, and eyes that fix their gaze on me, and never wink or close. . . ."

". . . when the locked door opens, and there comes in a young woman, deadly pale, and with long fair hair, who glides to the fire, and sits down in the chair we have left there, wringing her hands."

"The night was dark, and a cold wind blew, driving the clouds, furiously and fast, before it. There was one black, gloomy mass that seemed to follow him: not hurrying in the wild chase with the others, but lingering sullenly behind, and gliding darkly and stealthily on. He often looked back at this, and, more than once, stopped to let it pass over; but, somehow, when he went forward again, it was still behind him, coming mournfully and slowly up, like a shadowy funeral train."

". . . there was no gleam, no shadow, for the heavens, too, were one still, pale cloud; no sound or motion in anything but the dark river that flowed and moaned like an unresting sorrow."

"They enter, locking themselves in, descend the rugged steps, and are down in the Crypt. The lantern is not wanted, for the moonlight strikes in at the groined windows, bare of glass, the broken frames for which cast patterns on the ground. The heavy pillars which support the roof engender masses of black shade, but between them there are lanes of light."

"It was a very aged, ghostly place; the church had been built many hundreds of years ago, and had once had a convent or monastery attached; for arches in ruins, remains of oriel windows, and fragments of blackened walls, were yet standing-, while other portions of the old building, which had crumbled away and fallen down, were mingled with the churchyard earth and overgrown with grass, as if they too claimed a burying-place and sought to mix their ashes with the dust of men."

"It was a still afternoon--the golden light was lingering languidly among the upper boughs, only glancing down here and there on the purple pathway and its edge of faintly sprinkled moss: an afternoon in which destiny disguises her cold awful face behind a hazy radiant veil, encloses us in warm downy wings, and poisons us with violet-scented breath."

"I saw her, in the fire, but now. I hear her in music, in the wind, in the dead stillness of the night."

"Then must you strive to be worthy of her love. Be brave and pure, fearless to the strong and humble to the weak; and so, whether this love prosper or no, you will have fitted yourself to be honored by a maiden's love, which is, in sooth, the highest guerdon which a true knight can hope for."

"She lifted her face to him, and he bent forward and kissed her on the mouth, gently, with the one kiss that is an eternal pledge. And as he kissed her his heart strained again in his breast. He never intended to love her. But now it was over. He had crossed over the gulf to her, and all that he had left behind had shrivelled and become void."

"Only now it had become indispensable to him to have her face pressed close to him; he could never let her go again. He could never let her head go away from the close clutch of his arm. He wanted to remain like that for ever, with his heart hurting him in a pain that was also life to him."

"My heart was fashioned to be susceptible of love and sympathy, and when wrenched by misery to vice and hatred, it did not endure the violence of the change without torture such as you cannot even imagine."

"With a fierce action of her hand, as if she sprinkled hatred on the ground, and with it devoted those who were standing there to destruction, she looked up once at the black sky, and strode out into the wild night."

"There is no wealth," she went on, turning paler as she watched him, while her eyes grew yet more lustrous in their earnestness, "that could buy these words of me, and the meaning that belongs to them. Once cast away as idle breath, no wealth or power can bring them back. I mean them; I have weighed them; and I will be true to what I undertake."

"How beautiful you are! You are more beautiful in anger than in repose. I don't ask you for your love; give me yourself and your hatred; give me yourself and that pretty rage; give me yourself and that enchanting scorn; it will be enough for me."

"She dotes on poetry, sir. She adores it; I may say that her whole soul and mind are wound up, and entwined with it."

". . . you know nothing about Hope, that immortal, delicious maiden forever courted forever propitious, whom fools have called deceitful, as if it were Hope that carried the cup of disappointment, whereas it is her deadly enemy, Certainty, whom she only escapes by transformation."

"Dreams are the bright creatures of poem and legend, who sport on earth in the night season, and melt away in the first beam of the sun, which lights grim care and stern reality on their daily pilgrimage through the world."

"At a single strain of music, the scent of a flower, or even one glimpse of a path of moonlight lying fair upon a Summer sea, the barriers crumble and fall. Through the long corridors the ghosts of the past walk unforbidden, hindered only by broken promises, dead hopes, and dream-dust."

"She stood framed in the doorway, tall, mystic, silent, with strange, wistful face and deep soul shining in her dark questioning eyes. Nigel kissed the hand that she held out, and all his faith in woman and his reverence came back to him as he looked at her."

" . . . Natural affections and instincts, my dear sir, are the most beautiful of the Almighty's works, but like other beautiful works of His, they must be reared and fostered, or it is as natural that they should be wholly obscured, and that new feelings should usurp their place, as it is that the sweetest productions of the earth, left untended, should be choked with weeds and briers. I wish we could be brought to consider this, and remembering natural obligations a little more at the right time, talk about them a little less at the wrong one."

". . . her heart lived in no cherished secrets of its own, but in feelings which it longed to share with all the world."

"You'll remember someone who broke your heart, and you'll think to yourself, oh, yes, I can remember how that feels. But you can't, you smug old git. Oh, you might remember feeling sort of pleasantly sad. You might remember listening to music and eating chocolates in your room, or walking along the Embankment on your own, wrapped in a winter coat and feeling lonely and brave. But can you remember how with every mouthful of food it felt like you were biting into your own stomach? Can you remember the taste of red wine as it came back up and into the toilet bowl? Can you remember dreaming every night that you were still together, that he was talking to you gently and touching you, so that every morning when you woke up you had to go through it all over again? Can you remember carving his initials in your arm with a kitchen knife? Can you remember standing too close to the edge of an Underground platform? No? Well, fucking shut up, then. Stick your smile up your saggy old arse."

"To be nobody but yourself in a world which is doing its best day and night to make you like everybody else means to fight the hardest battle which any human being can fight and never stop fighting."

For my part, I prefer my heart to be broken.
It is so lovely, dawn-kaleidoscopic within the crack.
–DH Lawrence, “Pomegranate”

"When you give someone your whole heart and he doesn’t want it, you cannot take it back. It’s gone forever."

"You don’t. It doesn’t work. One day, you wake up, and you’ve learned how to store it, and you go to another part of the heart."

"A woman is only destined to have her heart broken if she hands it over to someone too weak, too careless, or too distracted to hang on to it."

"We really hate this fragile stage, when you’re like a broken window that’s been taped back together, poised to crash back to the floor as soon as the wind blows. You convince yourself you’re good as new when in fact you’re still a mass of shards. It’s so horribly pathetic and yet so brave at the same time."

If the moon smiled, she would resemble you.
You leave the same impression
of something beautiful, but annihilating.
Both of you are great light borrowers.
Her O-mouth grieves at the world; yours is unaffected,
And your first gift is making stone out of
I wake to a mausoleum; you are here,
ticking your fingers on the marble table, looking
for cigarettes,
spiteful as a woman, but not so nervous,
and dying to say something unanswerable.
The moon, too, abases her subjects,
but in the daytime she is ridiculous.
Your dissatisfactions, on the other hand,
arrive through the mailslot with loving regularity,
white and blank, expansive as carbon monoxide.
No day is safe from news of you,
walking about in Africa maybe, but thinking of me.
–Sylvia Plath, “The Rival”

"It’s like life’s this slippery slope and we’re never really in control and sometimes it seems like running into a tree is the worst thing that could ever happen, when really it’s what stops us from going over the cliff."

"This life has been a test. If this had been an actual life, you would have received instructions on where to go and what to do."

"When you start putting pen to paper, you see a side of your personal truth that doesn't otherwise reveal itself in conversation or thought."

"And that's the thing about people who mean everything they say. They think everyone else does too."

Evey Hammond: Remember, remember, the Fifth of November,/ The Gunpowder Treason and Plot... / I know of no reason/ Why the Gunpowder Treason should ever be forgot... But what of the man? I know his name was Guy Fawkes and I know, in his 1605, he attempted to blow up the Houses of Parliament. But who was he really? What was he like? We are told to remember the idea, not the man, because a man can fail. He can be caught, he can be killed and forgotten, but 400 years later, an idea can still change the world. I've witnessed first hand the power of ideas, I've seen people kill in the name of them, and die defending them... but you cannot kiss an idea, cannot touch it, or hold it... ideas do not bleed, they do not feel pain, they do not love... And it is not an idea that I miss, it is a man... A man that made me remember the Fifth of November. A man that I will never forget.

V: Good evening, London. Allow me first to apologize for this interruption. I do, like many of you, appreciate the comforts of every day routine- the security, the familiar, the tranquility, repetition. I enjoy them as much as any bloke. But in the spirit of commemoration, thereby those important events of the past usually associated with someone's death or the end of some awful bloody struggle, a celebration of a nice holiday, I thought we could mark this November the 5th, a day that is sadly no longer remembered, by taking some time out of our daily lives to sit down and have a little chat. There are of course those who do not want us to speak. I suspect even now, orders are being shouted into telephones, and men with guns will soon be on their way. Why? Because while the truncheon may be used in lieu of conversation, words will always retain their power. Words offer the means to meaning, and for those who will listen, the annunciation of truth. And the truth is, there is something terribly wrong with this country, isn't there? Cruelty and injustice, intolerance, and depression. And where once you had the freedom to object, think, and speak as you saw fit, you now have censors and systems of surveillence coercing your conformity and soliciting your submission. How did this happen? Who's to blame? Well certainly there are those more responsible than others, and they will be held accountable, but again truth be told, if you're looking for the guilty, you need only look into a mirror. I know why you did it. I know you were afraid. Who wouldn't be? War, terror, disease. There were a myraid of problems which conspired to corrupt your reason and rob you of your common sense. Fear got the best of you, and in your panic you turned to the now high chancellor, Adam Sutler. He promised you order, he promised you peace, and all he demanded in return was your silent, obedient consent. Last night I sought to end that silence. Last night I destroyed the Old Bailey, to remind this country of what it has forgotten. More than four hundred years ago a great citizen wished to embed the fifth of November forever in our memory. His hope was to remind the world that fairness, justice, and freedom are more than words, they are perspectives. So if you've seen nothing, if the crimes of this government remain unknown to you then I would suggest you allow the fifth of November to pass unmarked. But if you see what I see, if you feel as I feel, and if you would seek as I seek, then I ask you to stand beside me one year from tonight, outside the gates of Parliament, and together we shall give them a fifth of November that shall never, ever be forgot.

Evey Hammond: [reads] Vi Veri Veniversum Vivus Vici.
V: [translates] By the power of truth, I, while living, have conquered the universe.
Evey Hammond: Personal motto?
V: From "Faust".
Evey Hammond: That's about cheating the devil, isn't it?
V: It is.

V: ...A building is a symbol, as is the act of destroying it. Symbols are given power by people. A symbol, in and of itself is powerless, but with enough people behind it, blowing up a building can change the world.

V: Voilà! In view, a humble vaudevillian veteran, cast vicariously as both victim and villain by the vicissitudes of Fate. This visage, no mere veneer of vanity, is a vestige of the vox populi, now vacant, vanished. However, this valorous visitation of a by-gone vexation, stands vivified, and has vowed to vanquish these venal and virulent vermin van-guarding vice and vouchsafing the violently vicious and voracious violation of volition.
V: The only verdict is vengeance; a vendetta, held as a votive, not in vain, for the value and veracity of such shall one day vindicate the vigilant and the virtuous.
V: Verily, this vichyssoise of verbiage veers most verbose, so let me simply add that it is my very good honor to meet you and you may call me V.
Evey Hammond: Are you like a crazy person?
V: I'm quite sure they will say so.

"By the river piedra, I sat down and wept. There is a legend that everything that falls into the waters of this river -- leaves, insects, the feathers of birds -- is transformed into the rocks that make the riverbed.
If only I could tear out my heart and hurl it into the current, then my pain and longing would be over, and I could finally forget.
By the river piedra I sat down and wept. The winter air chills the tears on my cheeks, and my tears fall into the cold waters that course past me. Somewhere, this river joins another, then another, until--far from my heart and sight--all of them merge with the sea.
May my tears run just as far, that my love might never know that one day I cried fer him. May my tears run just as far, that I might forget the river piedra, the monastery, the church in the pyreness, the mists, and the paths we walked together.
I shall forget the roads, the mountains, and the fields of my dreams--the dreams that will never come true."

"It is a terrible thing to learn as a child that one is a being separate from all the world, that no one and no thing hurts along with one's burned tongues and skinned knees, that one's aches and pains are all one's own. Even more terrible, as we grow older, to learn that no person, no matter how beloved, can ever truly understand us."

"This has been a recurrent theme in my thinking lately. Loneliness, aloneness, the unreachable, unbreachable I."

"So our job as writers is not to diddle around our whole lives in the dot but to take one big step out of it and sink into the big sky and write from there. Let everything run through us and grab as much as we can of it with a pen and paper. Let yourself live in something that is already rightfully yours - your own wild mind.
I think what good psychotherapy does is help to bring you into wild mind, for you to learn to be comfortable there, rather than constantly grabbing a tidbit from wild mind and shoving it into the conscious mind, thereby trying to get control of it. This is what Zen, too, asks you to do: sit down in the middle of your wild mind. This is all about a loss of control. This is what falling in love is, too: a loss of control.
Can you do this? Lose control and let wild mind take over? It's the best way to write. To live, too."

"He is one of those people
"To whom you must allow moods,--
"When their sun shines, dance,--
"And when their vapors rise,
"Sit in the the shadow."

"I envy the music that lovers hear.
I see them walking hand in hand, standing cloe to each other in a queue at the theater or subway station, heads touching while they sit on a park bench, and I ache to hear the song that plays between them: The stirring chords of romance's first bloom, the stately airs that whisper between a couple long in love. You can see it in the way they look at each other, the shared glances, the touch of a hand on an elbow. You can almost hear it, if you listen close. Almost, but not quite, because the music belongs to them and all you can have of it is a vague echo that rises up from the bittersweet murmur and shuffle of your own memories, ragged shadows stirring restlessly, called to mind by some forgotten incident, remembered only in the late night, the early morning. Of the happiness of others."

"Invention, it must be humbly admitted, does not consist in creating out of void, but out of chaos."

"Your love is different from mine. What I mean is, when you close
your eyes, for that moment, the center of the universe comes to reside
within you. And you become a small figure within that vastness, which
spreads without limit behind you, and continues to expand at
tremendous speed, to engulf all of my past, even before I was born,
and every word I've ever written, and each view I've seen, and all the
constellations, and the darkness of outer space that surrounds the
small blue ball that is earth. Then, when you open your eyes, all that
I anticipate the next time you are troubled and must close your eyes again.
The way we think may be completely different, but you and I are
an ancient, archetypal couple, the original man and woman. We are the
model for Adam and Eve. For all couples in love, there comes a moment
when a man gazes at a woman with the very same kind of realization. It
is an infinite helix, the dance of two souls resonating, like the
twist of DNA, like the vast universe.
Oddly, at that moment, she looked over at me and smiled. As if in
response to what I'd been thinking, she said, "That was beautiful.
I'll never forget it.""

"It was never cold under the hill, and never dark.
But the light was not a light for seeing. It deceived.
He tried to remember the sun,
To remember remembering the moon."

"Had I the heavens' embroidered cloths,
Enwrought with golden and silver light,
The blue and the dim and the dark cloths
Of night and light and the half light,
I would spread the cloths under your feet:
But I, being poor, have only my dreams;
I have spread my dreams under your feet;
Tread softly because you tread on my dreams."

"When you’re unsure of yourself," she said, "when you start pulling back into doubt and small living, she's the one inside saying, 'Get up from there and live like the glorious girl you are.' She’s the power inside you, you understand?"
Her hands stayed where they were but released their pressure. "And whatever it is that keeps widening your heart, that’s Mary, too, not only the power inside you but the love. And when you get down to it, Lily, that’s the only purpose grand enough for a human life. Not just to love—-but to persist in love."

“I am drowning in negativism, self-hate, doubt, madness—and even I am not strong enough to deny the routine, the rote, to simplify. No, I go plodding on, afraid that the blank hell in the back of my eyes will break through, spewing forth like a dark pestilence; afraid that my disease which eats away the pith of my body with merciless impersonality will break forth in obvious sores and warts, screaming ‘Traitor, sinner, imposter.’”

“I am afraid. I am not solid, but hollow. I feel behind my eyes a numb, paralyzed cavern, a pit of hell, a mimicking nothingness. I never thought, I never wrote, I never suffered. I want to kill myself, to escape from responsibility, to crawl back abjectly into the womb. I do not know who I am, where I am going—and I am the one who has to decide the answers to these hideous questions.”

“Reality is what I make it. That is what I have said I believed. Then I look at the hell I am wallowing in, nerves paralyzed, action nullified—fear, envy, hate: all the corrosive emotions of insecurity biting away at my sensitive guts. Time, experience: the colossal wave, sweeping tidal over me, drowning, drowning.”

“I lay and cried, and began to feel again, to admit I was human, vulnerable, sensitive. I began to remember how it had been before; how there was the germ of positive creativeness. Character is fate; and damn, I’d better work on my character. I had been withdrawing into a retreat of numbness: it is so much safer not to feel, not to let the world touch one. But my honest self revolted at this, hated me for doing this. Sick with conflict, destructive negative emotions, frozen into disintegration I was, refusing to articulate, to spew forth these emotions—they festered in me, growing big, distorted, like pus-bloated sores. Small problems, mentions of someone else’s felicity, evidence of someone else’s talents, frightened me, making me react hollowly, fighting jealousy, envy, hate. Feeling myself fall apart, decay, rot, and the laurels wither and fall away, and my past sins and omissions strike me with full punishment and import. All this, all this foul, gangrenous, sludge ate away at my insides. Silent, insidious.”

“I want so obviously, so desperately to be loved, and to be capable of love. I am still so naive; I know pretty much what I like and dislike; but please, don’t ask me who I am. ‘a passionate, fragmentary girl,’ maybe?”

“So, now I shall talk every night. To myself. To the moon… I talk to myself and look at the dark trees, blessedly neutral. So much easier than facing people, than having to look happy, invulnerable, clever. With masks down, I walk, talking to the moon, to the neutral impersonal force that does not hear, but merely accepts my being. And does not smite me down.”

“I suppose I was most appalled that you should bind me to you…and that you could leave me thus cut open, my heart utterly gone, without anesthetic or stitching; my vital blood was spilling on the barren table, and nothing could grow.”

“I have the one person I could ever love in this world. Now I must work ot be a person worthy of that.”

Beauty, you walk on corpses, mocking them;
Horror is charming as your other gems,
And Murder is a trinket dancing there
Lovingly on your naked belly's skin.
You are a candle where the mayfly dies
In flames, blessing this fire's deadly bloom.
The panting lover bending to his love
Looks like a dying man who strokes his tomb.
What difference, then, from heaven or from hell,
O Beauty, monstrous in simplicity?
If eye, smile, step can open me the way
To find unknown, sublime infinity?
Angel or siren, spirit, I don't care,
As long as velvet eyes and perfumed head
And glimmering motions, O my queen, can make
The world less dreadful, and the time less dead.
-- from Baudelaire's "Hymn to Beauty," translated by James McGowan

"We looked as one at others, pained
voyeurs happy in the lives of others, blowing blue
riffs of smoke-talk, small talk, comparing lifelines,
the distances between, improvising around
the eternal melody of loneliness."

Maybe yes, and maybe no,
You may have it as you please,
Since I choose to keep you so,
Suppliant on your curious knees.
-- from "Tease" by D.H. Lawrence

"What I look for is not library walls adorned with ivory and glass, but your mind's abode; for I have installed there not books, but what gives books their value - the doctrine found in my writings of old."

""I'll write this all down for you," I said. "I'll put it in a story."
I don't know if that's what he wanted to ask me, but it's something everybody wants--for someone to see the hurt done to them and set it down like it matters."

I have often asked myself whether, given the choice, I would choose to have manic-depressive illness....Strangely enough I think I would choose to have it. It's complicated. Depression is awful beyond words or sounds or images; I would not go through an extended one again....So why would I want anything to do with this illness? Because I honestly believe that as a result of it I have felt more things, more deeply; had more experiences, more intensely; loved more, and been more loved; laughed more often, for having cried more often; appreciated more the springs, for all the winters; worn death "as close as dungarees," appreciated it -- and life -- more; seen the finest and the most terrible in people, and slowly learned the values of caring, loyalty, and seeing things through. I have seen the breadth and depth and width of my mind and heart and seen how frail they both are, and how ultimately unknowable they both are. Depressed, I have crawled on my hands and knees in order to get across a room and have done it for month after month. But, normal or manic, I have run faster, thought faster, and loved faster than most I know. And I think much of this is related to my illness -- the intensity it gives to things and the perspective it forces on me. I think it has made me test the limits of my mind (which, while wanting, is holding) and the limits of my upbringing, family, education, and friends.
The countless hypomanias, and mania itself, all have brought into my life a different level of sensing and feeling and thinking. Even when I have been most psychotic -- delusional, hallucinating, frenzied -- I have been aware of finding new corners in my mind and heart. Some of those corners were incredible and beautiful and took my breath away and made me feel as though I could die right then and the images would sustain me. Some of them were grotesque and ugly and I never wanted to know they were there or to see them again. But, always, there were those new corners and -- when feeling my normal self, beholden for that self to medicine and love -- I cannot imagine becoming jaded to life, because I know of those limitless corners, with their limitless views."

"But there's not a single person anywhere to whom I can say I am unhappy because they would ask me why and the questions would begin and I would break down. I mustn't break down because I must protect Henry. Oh, to hell with Henry, to hell with Henry. I want somebody who'll accept the truth about me and doesn't need protection. If I'm a bitch and a fake, is there nobody who will love a bitch and a fake?"

"A knight is sworn to valor. His heart knows only virtue. His blade defends the helpless. His might upholds the weak. His word speaks only truth. His wrath undoes the wicked."

"Dreams die hard and you hold them in your hand long after they have turned to dust."

"Seeing and hearing nothing; it is sweet
to keep our thoughts out of the range of hurt."

"Then I will no longer
Find myself in life as in a strange garment
Surprised at the earth
And the love of one woman
And the shamelessness of men"

"When despair for the world grows in me
and I wake in the night at the least sound
in fear of what my life and my childrens life may be
I go and lie down where the wood drake rests
in his beauty on the water,
and the great heron feeds.
I come into the peace of the wild things
who do not tx their lives with
forethought or grief.
I come into the presence of still water.
And I feel above me the day-blind stars
watching with their light.
For a time
I rest, in the grace of the world
and I am free."

"But me, maybe I fit in a place like this. Maybe the cold inside of me will seem less cold this winter. Maybe the tall buildings will make the brick walls I build for myself seem smaller. Maybe the noises in my head will quiet down in the middle of all the other noises. Or maybe the cold and the walls and the noise will get worse."

"Many waters cannot quench love, neither can floods drown it. What then kills love? Only this: Neglect. Not to see you when you stand before me. Not to think of you in the little things. Not to make the road wide for you, the table spread for you. To choose you out of habit not desire, to pass the flower seller without a thought. To leave the dishes unwashed, the bed unmade, to ignore you in the mornings, make use of you at night. To crave another while pecking your cheek. To say your name without hearing it, to assume it is mine to call."

"But to put something in context is a step towards saying in can be understood and that it can be explained. And if it can be explained, it can be explained away."

"Doomed to die he had hidden then, bereft of joys, had laid down his life in his fen-refuge, his heathen soul; there hell took him."

"She could do nothing. Djuna's words illuminated her chaos, but changed nothing. What was it Djuna said: that life tended to crystallize into patterns which became traps and whirls. That people tended to see each other in their first "state" or "form" and to adopt a rhythm in consequence. That they had the greatest difficulty in seeing the transformations of the loved one, in seeing the becoming. If they did finally perceive the new self, they had the greatest difficulty nevertheless in changing the rhythm. The strong one was condemned to perpetual strength, the weak to perpetual weakness. The one who loved you best condemned you to a static role because he had adapted his being to the past self. If you attempted to change, warned Djuna, you would find a subtle, perverse opposition, and perhaps sabotage! Inwardly and outwardly, a pattern was a form which became a prison. And then we had to smash it."

"She walks in beauty like the night
Of cloudless climes and starry skies,
And all that's best of dark and bright
Meet in her aspect and her eyes;
Thus mellowed to the tender light
Which heaven to gaudy day denies.
One ray the more, one shade the less
Had half impaired the nameless grace
Which waves in every raven tress
Or softly lightens o'er her face,
Where thoughts serenely sweet express
How pure, how dear their dwelling place.
And on that cheek and o'er that brow
So soft, so calm yet eloquent,
The smiles that win, the tints that glow
But tell of days in goodness spent
A mind at peace with all below,
A heart whose love is innocent."

"Silence has many advantages. When you do not speak, other people presume you to be deaf or feeble-minded and promptly make a show of their own limitations. Only occasionally do I find I have to break my peace: shout or be lost in the shuffle. But mostly I am lost in the shuffle. I write and draw in my notebook an read anything I please.
It is true I do not speak as well as I can think. But that is true of most people, as nearly as I can tell."

She breathed hot air into the snow to see if she could
reflect some charge somewhere, distribute her passion
into something just to see a sign that her enormous
feelings were not just an illusion, but a truth of sorts.
- Emma Magenta

"Innocence", he said, while his eyes fell away and slowly slid their black irises to study the mist-laden woods around him. "Losing your innocence, is like losing a limb." The smile that appeared on his lips was neither cold nor warm - it was colourless. Flat. "You can still live - you can move around. But you will never dance again, not like you once did. You will never run across a meadow without a shadow drifting over your heart." The eyes returned. Slowly lifting - swaying upwards like birds taking flight. "She crippled me." Quiet, for a moment, and then, "For that, I will cripple -her-." -Linda Bergkvist, Jeirehneen of the Eshreemn

"I only say this because I want you to know what is coming. The attack will combine real regrets from our past-this part will be true. And it will involve fears of our future-this part will also be true. And it will mix these two powerful truths with a believable lie to make the lie seem like the truth. It is a powerful attack, and it can shake you as much as your regrets or fears shake you. If you attempt to think your way out of it, you are lost. The only hope is to ignore it. Completely. You cannot argue with your regrets or fears. They are real enough. And lies built on them will also seem true."

"Here's to the crazy ones. The misfits. The rebels. The trouble makers. The round heads in the square holes. The ones who see things differently. They're not fond of rules. And they have no respect for the status quo. You can quote them. Disagree with them. Glorify or villify them. But the only thing you cant do is ignore them. Because they change things. They push the human race forward. And while some may see them as the crazy ones, we see genius. Because the people who are crazy enough to think they can change the world, are the ones who do."

"It's my goal to confront people with me, with my personality and I do it as radically as possible."
~Alanis Morrisette

"Life is a necklace of fears, your uncried tears on a string."

"Life is a tornado watch...you can hunker down in the basement or climb up on the roof, get rock star hair and scream 'I was waiting for you!'"

"I think I'm carrying a lot of anger and frustration inside of me and I really can't do anything about it. But I think I'm far more mellow now. I'm more balanced, more in tune with myself. I think I'm more capable to deal with my own emotions now. It's also important for myself, that I have myself under control, I think everything else just causes a hell of a lot of..pain, pain and ugliness."
~Alanis Morrisette

"Even with your freedom of speech I still have my freedom to ignore you."
~Nick Davis

"Now is no time to think of what you do not have. Think of what you can do with what there is."
~Santiago, The Old Man and the Sea, Ernest Hemingway

"I think we dream so we dont have to be apart so long. If we're in each others dreams, we can be together all the time."
~Hobbes, Calvin & Hobbes

"Teenhood. It's a torturous time when you learn almost everything you really have to know about survival. The important thing to remember when you are living through it, however, is that you have absolutely no idea quite how smart and strong and beautiful the pain will make you. So go forth and suffer...you'll rule the world."
~Shirley Manson

"And if I asked you about love I'd get a sonnet, but you've never looked at a woman and been truly vulnerable. Known that someone could kill you with a look. That someone could rescue you from grief. That God had put an angel on Earth just for you. And you wouldn't know how it felt to be her angel. To have the love be there for her forever."
~Sean, Good Will Hunting

"...Something kinda sad about the way that things have come to be. Desensitized to everything. What became of subtlety? How can it mean anything to me If I really don't feel anything at all? I'll keep digging till I feel something...."

We are people fulled with beautiful inexpressible thoughts. What I feel for you and what I think about marrying you, I cannot put in terms other than poetry, and poetry comes out of silence."

"I would like to sing someone to sleep,
have someone to sit by and be with.
I would like to cradle you and softly sing,
be your companion while you sleep or wake.
I would like to be the only person
in the house who knew: the night outside was cold.
And would like to listen to you
and outside to the world and to the woods.
The clocks are striking, calling to each other,
and one can see right to the edge of time.
Outside the house a strange man is afoot
and a strange dog barks, wakened from his sleep.
Beyond that there is silence.
My eyes rest upon your face wide-open;
and they hold you gently, letting you go
when something in the dark begins to move."

If you wish to glimpse inside a human soul
and get to know a man, don't bother analyzing
his ways of being silent, of talking, of weeping,
of seeing how much he is moved by noble ideas;
you will get better results if you just watch him laugh.
If he laughs well, he's a good man.
~Fyodor Dostoyevski

"We should be careful to get out of an experience only the wisdom
that is in it - and stop there; lest we be like the cat that sits down on a
hot stove-lid. She will never sit down on a hot stove-lid again---and that is well;
but also she will never sit down on a cold one anymore."
-Mark Twain

"People are like stained-glass windows.
They sparkle when the sun is out,
but when the darkness sets in,
their true beauty is revealed
only if there is a light from within."
-Elisabeth Kubler-Ross

"If we just worry about the big picture, we are powerless.
So my secret is to start right away doing whatever little work
I can do. I try to give joy to one person in the morning, and
remove the suffering of one person in the afternoon. . . .
That is the secret. Start right now."
–Sister Chän Khöng

"Don't try to reason with your heart
or feel with your mind
for just as the heart knows no logic
the mind can't lead you to your soul."

"If a man will begin with certainties,
he shall end with doubts;
but if he will be content to begin with doubts,
he shall end in certainties."
-Sir Francis Bacon, 1561-1626

"The biggest cause of trouble in the world today
is that the stupid people are so sure about things
and the intelligent folks are so full of doubts."
-Bertrand Russell

"Nothing in the world can take the place of persistence.
Talent will not; nothing is more common than unsuccessful men with talent.
Genius will not; unrewarded genius is almost a proverb.
Education will not; the world is full of educated derelicts.
Persistence and determination alone are omnipotent."
-Calvin Coolidge

"Divine souls suffer violent opposition
from mediocre minds."
-Albert Einstein

"Success is not final, failure is not fatal: it is the courage to continue that counts."
-Winston Churchill

"A man can be as great as he wants to be. If you believe in yourself and have the courage, the determination, the dedication, the competitive drive and if you are willing to sacrifice the little things in life and pay the price for the things that are worthwhile, it can be done."
-Vince Lombardi

"Why would you kill the thing you loved?"
The softness of his voice. Even now, under the deodars in the Court of Freedom, her feet in the grass over his silent body, she could hear his voice, clear but soft, you had to stop whatever you were doing, and lean close to hear it. And he had replied so quietly it took a few seconds for it to register. "You kill it before it kills you."
-Paint it Black, Janet Fitch

"The worst thing that being an artist could do to you would be that it would make you slightly unhappy constantly."
-J.D. Salinger, "De Daumier-Smith's Blue Period"

"I have seen the universe yawning
Where the black planets roll without aim -
Where they roll in their horror unheeded,
Without knowledge or luster or name."

"Blood is thicker than water, and much tastier."

"I am the angel of death. The time of purification is at hand."

"The warlike days are over. Blood is too precious a thing in these days of dishonourable peace; and the glories of the great races are as a tale that is told."

"Through the gates that stand between the mortal world and the immortal Realm of Chaos are now closed to me, still I would rather die having glimpsed eternity than never to have stirred the cold furrow of mortal life.I embrace death without regret as I embraced life without fear."

"Do not ask which creature screams in the night,
Do not question who waits for you in the shadow.
It is my cry that wakes you in the night,
And my body that crouches in the shadow.
I am Tzeench and you are the puppet
That dances to my tune."

"And the shadow fell upon the Land, and the World was riven stone from stone. The oceans fled, and the mountains were swallowed up, and the nations were scattered to the eight corners of the world. The moon was as blood, and the sun was as ashes. The seas boiled, and the living envied the dead."

"You can't go around building a better world for people. Only people can build a better world for people. Otherwise it's just a cage."

"I know about people who talk about suffering for the common good. It's never bloody them! When you hear a man shouting "Forward, brave comrades!" you'll see he's the one behind the bloody big rock and the wearing the only really arrow-proof helmet!"

"If you want to know what a man's like, take a good look at how he treats his inferiors, not his equals."

"If of all words of tongue and pen,
The saddest are, "It might have been,"
More sad are these we daily see:
"It is, but hadn't ought to be.""

"We chase misprinted lies
We face the path of time
And yet I fight
And yet I fight
This battle all alone
No one to cry to
No place to call home."

"Don't stand beside my grave and weep,
For I'm not there, I do not sleep,
I am a thousand winds that blow,
I am the diamond's glint on snow,
I am the sunlight on ripened grain,
I am the gentle autumn's rain.
When you awaken in morning's hush,
I am the swift uplifting rush,
of quiet birds in circle flight,
I am soft stars that shine at night,
Don't stand beside my grave and cry,
I am not there. I did not die."

"That is not dead which can eternal lie
But given many strange aeons, even death may die"

"Sword in hand, at the bloody fields of History
We rent our blades through dogma and humility
Carve a future, according to our will
Set worlds ablaze with our seething fire
Let you all acknowledge that we are here
As masters to rule this failing humanity
Our beings forged of rage and defiance
With strength to trample the weak and the foolish
And so we march with burning brands
Temples aflame, on our path to glory..."
Frater Nihil

"Remember, youth, as you pass by,
As you was once, so once was I,
As I am now, you soon will be,
Prepare to die and follow me."

"You have to have a darkness...for the dawn to come."

"How typical of humans... Your eyes are clouded so you cannot see...... Even though the truth is always within you..."
- Vampire Princess Miyu

"No one holds command over me.
No man. No god. No prince.
What is a claim of age for ones who are immortal?
What is a claim of power for ones who defy death?
Call your damnable hunt.
We shall see who I drag screaming to hell with me."
-Gunter Dorn, Das Ungeheuer Darin. Vampire the Masquerade 2nd Edition Book

"I could choose to be purely good, but I will not. I could choose to be purely evil, but I will not. I will be neutral. In that way I am free to be what suits me best, and no man can predict my actions."

"We strive to destroy the evil around us. Yet, we often forget that there is no light without darkness, nor darkness without light. Perhaps a plant it the best analogy. A plant realizes that too little light is deadly, but it also knows that too much light is equally deadly. It is the balance of the two that makes the world."

"Wars take many lives away. Humans never forget the grief, but they also never stop the fighting. Streams of blood and tears are only an ornament for their destructive ritual."
-Duo Maxwell, Gundam Wing

"He who fights with monsters should look to it that he himself does not become a monster...when you gaze too long into the abyss, the abyss also gazes back."
-Friedrich Nietzsche

"And though I am prepared to face my destiny, you will not find me easy prey."

"We wear the mask that grins and lies..it hides our face, and shades our eyes....ah, but let the world dream otherwise, we wear the mask!"

"Tired of these endless games,
Time to end the darkened day
To raise the sword
To kill the light
Because there is no reason left to fight..."
-Night Oasis

"Those who fear the darkness have no idea what the light can do."

"She looked so beautiful in the moonlight, but it wasn't only the way she looked, it was what was inside her, everything from her intelligence and courage to her wit, and the special smile she gave only to him. He would slay a dragon, if there were such a thing, just to see that smile. He knew he would never want anyone else for as long as he lived. He would rather spend the rest of his life alone than with someone else. There could be no one else."
-Richard Cypher, Wizard's First Rule by Terry Goodkind

"We rode on the winds of the rising storm, We ran to the sounds of the thunder. We danced among the lightning bolts, and tore the world asunder."
-Robert Jordan, Crossroads of Twilight

"Whereas the truth is that the fullness of soul can sometimes overflow in utter vapidity of language, for none of us can ever express the exact measure of his needs or his thoughts or his sorrows; and human speech is like a cracked kettle on which we tap crude rhythms for bears to dance to, while we long to make music that will melt the stars."
-Flaubert, Madame Bovary

The complaint was the answer. To have heard myself making it was to be answered. Lightly men talk of saying what they mean. Often when he was teaching me to write in Greek the Fox would say, "Child, to say the very thing you really mean, the whole of it, nothing more or less or other than what you really mean; that's the whole art and joy of words." A glib saying. When the time comes to you at which you will be forced at last to utter the speech which has lain at the center of your soul for years, which you have, all that time, idiot-like, been saying over and over, you'll not talk about joy of words. I saw well why the gods do not speak to us openly, nor let us answer. Till that word can be dug out of us, why should they hear the babble that we think we mean? How can they meet us face to face till we have faces?
--C.S. Lewis, Till We Have Faces

"Once a thing is set to happen, all you can do is hope it won't. Or will - depending. As long as you live, there's always something waiting, and even if it's bad, and you know it's bad, what can you do? You can't stop living."

Everything failed to subdue me. Soon everything seemed dull : another sunrise, the lives of heroes, falling in love, war, the discoveries people made about each other. There wasn't a clear, identifiable emotion within me, except for greed and , possibly, total disgust. I had all the characteristics of a human being ---flesh, blood, skin, hair--- but my depersonalization was so intense, had gone so deep, that the normal ability to feel compassion had been eradicated, the victim of a slow, purposeful erasure. I was simply imitating reality, a rough resemblance of a human being, with only a dim corner of my mind functioning.
-American Psycho, Bret Easton Ellis

There is something about words. In expert hands, manipulated deftly, they take you prisoner. Wind themselves around your limbs like spider silk, and when you are so enthralled you cannot move, they pierce your skin, enter your blood, numb your thoughts. Inside you they work their magic.
~The Thirteenth Tale - Diane Setterfield
Bloody Demise of a Fallen Dream
08 June 2006 @ 12:36 pm
"He is not to them what he is to me," I thought: "he is not of their kind. I believe he is of mine;--I am sure he is--I feel akin to him--I understand the language of his countenance and movements: though rank and wealth sever us widely, I have something in my brain and heart, in my blood and nerves, that assimilates me mentally to him...Every good, true, vigorous feeling I have gathers impulsively round him. I know I must conceal my sentiments: I must smother hope; I must remember that he cannot care much for me. For when I say that I am of his kind, I do not mean that I have his force to influence, and his spell to attract; I mean only that I have certain tastes and feelings in common with him. I must, then, repeat continually that we are for ever sundered:- and yet, while I breathe and think, I must love him."

"It is an illusion that youth is happy, an illusion of those who have lost it; but the young know they are wretched, for they are full of the truthless ideals which have been instilled into them, and each time they come in contact with the real they are bruised and wounded."

'Don't you know that you are my whole life? But I know no peace and cannot give you any. All of myself, my love...yes. I cannot think of you and myself separately. You and I are one for me. And I do not see any possibility of peace ahead either for me or for you. I see the possibility of despair, of unhappiness...or I see the possibility of happiness, such happiness!...Isn't it possible?' he added with his lips only; but she heard him.

'You can be obsessed by remorse all your life, not because you chose the wrong thing--you can always repent, atone: but because you never had the chance to prove to yourself that you would have chosen the right thing.'

"I don't know if you've ever felt like that. That you wanted to sleep for a thousand years. Or just not exist. Or just not be aware that you do exist."

"She sits on land where she has chosen to stay forever lonely for what she left. She's everybody who ever made a difficult choice. She doesn't regret it but she must pay for it. She can never be quite human. When she uses her dearly bought feet every step is on sharp knives."

Maybe you have to know darkness before you can appreciate the light.
-Madeleine L'Engle

True happiness is not attained through self-gratification, but through fidelity to a worthy purpose.
-Helen Keller

There are two ways of spreading lights: to be the candle or the mirror that reflects it.
-Edith Wharton

Everyone thinks of changing the world, but no one thinks of changing himself.
– Leo Tolstoy

"These voices, these quiet words, these footsteps in the trench behind me recall me at a bound from the terrible loneliness and fear of death by which I had been almost destroyed. They are more to me than life, these voices, they are more to me than motherliness and more than fear; they are the strongest, most comforting thing there is anywhere: they are the voices of my comrades. I am no longer a shuddering speck of existence, alone in the darkness; - I belong to them and they to me; we all share the same fear and the same life, we are nearer than lovers, in a simpler, a harder way; I could bury my face in them, in these voices, these words that have saved me and will stand by me."

“You think me unsteady – easily swayed by the whim of the moment – easily tempted – easily put aside…It is not by protestations that I shall endeavor to convince you I am wronged, it is not by telling you that my affections are steady. My conduct shall speak for me – absence, distance, time shall speak for me. – They shall prove, that as far as you can be deserved by any body, I do deserve you.”

"Deep down within her she was waiting for something to happen. Like sailors in distress, she gazed at the solitude of her life with despairing eyes, seeking some white sail in the far-off haze of the horizon. She didn't know what this change would be, what wind would bring it to her, toward what shore it would take her, whether it was a launch or a triple-deck ship, laden with anxiety or filled to the portholes with joy. But each morning when she awoke she hoped for it that day, and she would listen to every noise, leap out of bed, be amazed that it hadn't come; then, at sunset, growing continually sadder, she would look forward to the next day."

"When you awaken your heart, you find, to your surprise, that your heart is empty. You find that you are looking into outer space. What are you, who are you, where is your heart? If you really look, you won't find anything tangible and solid. Of course, you might find something very solid if you have a grudge against someone or you have fallen possessively in love. But that is not awakened heart. If you search for awakened heart, if you put your hand through your rib cage and feel for it, there is nothing there except for tenderness. You feel sore and soft, and if you open your eyes to the rest of the world, you feel tremendous sadness. This kind of sadness doesn't come from being mistreated. You don't feel sad because someone has insulted you or because you feel impoverished. Rather, this experience of sadness is unconditioned. It occurs because your heart is completely exposed. There is no skin or tissue covering it; it is pure raw meat. Even if a tiny mosquito lands on it, you feel so touched. Your experience is raw and tender and personal.
The genuine heart of sadness comes from feeling that your nonexistent heart is full. You would like to spill your heart's blood, give your heart to others. For the warrior, this experience of sad and tender heart is what gives birth to fearlessness. Conventionally, being fearless means that you are not afraid or that if someone hits you, you will hit him back. However, we are not talking about that street-fighter level of fearlessness. Real fearlessness is the product of tenderness. It comes from letting the world tickle your heart, your raw and beautiful heart. You are willing to open up, without resistance or shyness, and face the world. You are willing to share your heart with others."

"A rational person will not expect the world to conform around their ideas. They understand that they must conform to the conventions of the rational world. Therefore, all important breakthroughs are made by irrational people."

"There is no morality in virtual reality."

"Life is a spiral. We often find ourselves in the same circle, but either higher or lower on the helix."

No love, no friendship can cross the path of our destiny without leaving some mark on it forever.

"I don't think he knows how he makes me feel. I wish he could know, without my telling him. They don't like you to tell them they've made you cry. They don't like you to tell them you're unhappy because of them. If you do, they think you're possessive and exacting. And then they hate you. They hate you whenever you say anything you really think. You always have to keep playing little games. Oh, I thought we didn't have to; I thought this was so big I could say whatever I meant. I guess you can't, ever. I guess there isn't anything big enough for that. Oh, if he would just telephone, I wouldn't tell him I had been sad about him. They hate sad people. I would be so sweet and gay, he couldn't help but like me. If he would only telephone."

"It is only with the heart that one can see rightly. What is essential is invisable to the soul." - Antoine de Saint Exupery

"We turn skeletons into goddesses and hope they can teach us how to not-need." - Marya Hornbacher

"Someday you'll find your angel, I'm just a dangerous one." - Francesca Lia Block

The tragedy of this world is that no one is happy, whether stuck in a time of pain or of joy. The tragedy of this world is that everyone is alone. For a life in the past cannot be shared with the present. Each person who gets stuck in time gets stuck alone.

Some say it is best not to go near the center of time. Life is a vessel of sadness, but it is noble to live life. Others disagree. They would rather have an eternity of contentment, even if that eternity were fixed and frozen, like a butterfly mounted in a case.

During the time of her absence, I learned what it was to have faith, to be like one of those people who believes in God. Every night I would go to bed thinking I LOVE THIS WOMAN and every morning I would wake up thinking the same thing; I LOVE THIS WOMAN. To wake every morning and know you will love the same person is an deliberate act of faith. It is an act of will. To wake every morning and believe anything about yourself to be constant is what is meant by faith.
Even if she never returned to me, I knew I would love that woman. It's sad to say, but we really learn how to love during absence.

"Well," said Kite, "you don't disprove someone's pessimism by adding up good and evil on a dessert napkin to see which is the greater total. Hope's a choice, not a sum; you can have as much of it as you damn well feel like having, regardless of actual circumstances. But if you try to explain that straight out to someone when they're in a bad mood, they'll assume you're being patronizing and may even throw something at you. It's better to use a little finesse."

In the antiseptic world we try to purge ourselves of difficult things. Don’t dwell on it, switch off the light and go home. But this is home. I have to be a home to myself. I am the place I come back to and I can’t keep hiding difficult things in trunks. Soon the house will be full of trunks and I perched on top of them with the phone saying, “Yes, I’m fine, of course, I’m fine, everything’s fine.” The trunks shudder.

" . . . I wish you to know that you have been the last dream of my soul. In my degradation I have not been so degraded but that the sight of you with your father, and of this home made such a home by you, has stirred old shadows that I thought had died out of me. Since I knew you, I have been troubled by a remorse that I thought would never reproach me again, and have heard whispers from old voices impelling me upward, that I thought were silent for ever. I have had unformed ideas of striving afresh, beginning anew, shaking off sloth and sensuality, and fighting out the abandoned fight. A dream, all a dream, that ends in nothing, and leaves the sleeper where he lay down, but I wish you to know that you inspired it."

" . . . he's more myself than I am. Whatever our souls are made of, his and mine are the same, and Linton's is as different as a moonbeam from lightning, or frost from fire."

She loved him with too clear a vision to fear his cloudiness.

"If you will take me for your wife, Walter, I will love you dearly. If you will let me go with you, Walter, I will go to the world's end without fear. I can give up nothing for you - I have nothing to resign, and no one to forsake; but all my love and life shall be devoted to you, and with my last breath I will breathe your name to God if I have sense and memory left."

"If I loved you less, I might be able to talk about it more."

"My heart was a habitation large enough for many guests, but lonely and chill, and without a household fire. I longed to kindle one! It seemed not so wild a dream . . . "

But the disparaging of those we love always alienates us from them to some extent. We must not touch our idols; the gilt comes off in our hands.

"A heart well worth winning, and well won. A heart that, once won, goes through fire and water for the winner, and never changes, and is never daunted."

"Her heart--is given him, with all its love and truth. She would joyfully die with him, or, better than that, die for him. She knows he has failings, but she thinks they have grown up through his being like one cast away, for the want of something to trust in, and care for, and think well of. . .

The love that is never to be realized will often remain a man's guiding ideal.

"I hope that real love and truth are stronger in the end than any evil or misfortune in the world."

She was more than human to me. She was a Fairy, a Sylph, I don't know what she was - anything that no one ever saw, and everything that everybody ever wanted. I was swallowed up in an abyss of love in an instant. There was no pausing on the brink; no looking down, or looking back; I was gone, headlong, before I had sense to say a word to her.

"I loved you madly; in the distasteful work of the day, in the wakeful misery of the night, girded by sordid realities, or wandering through Paradises and Hells of visions into which I rushed, carrying your image in my arms, I loved you madly."

. . . she better liked to see him free and happy, even than to have him near her, because she loved him better than herself.

"Men always want to be a woman's first love. That is their clumsy vanity. We women have a more subtle instinct about things. What we like is to be a man's last romance."

Life and death appeared to me ideal bounds, which I should first break through, and pour a torrent of light into our dark world.

"You said I killed you - haunt me, then! The murdered do haunt their murderers, I believe. I know that ghosts have wandered on earth. Be with me always - take any form - drive me mad! only do not leave me in this abyss, where I cannot find you!"

I prefer being wrong in my own way to being right in someone else's.

But when the self speaks to the self, who is speaking? - the entombed soul, the spirit driven in, in, in to the central catacomb; the self that took the veil and left the world - a coward perhaps, yet somehow beautiful, as it flits with its lantern restlessly up and down the dark corridors.

Truly the universe is full of ghosts, not sheeted churchyard spectres, but the inextinguishable and immortal elements of life, which, having once been, can never die, though they blend and change and change again for ever.

Articulacy of the fingers, the language of the deaf and dumb, signing on the body longing. Who taught you to write in blood on my back? Who taught you to use your hands as branding irons? You have scored your name into my shoulders, referenced me with your mark. The pads of your fingers have become printing blocks, you tap a message on to my skin, tap meaning into my body. Your morse code interferes with my heart beat. I had a steady heart before I met you, I relied upon it, it had seen active service and grown strong. Now you alter its pace with your own rhythm, you play upon me, drumming me taut.

"The person you love best, you share the world with. When that person's gone the world remains but it isn't the same thing, it's at a distance.
It isn't the same world, actually. It has so little hold on you, you could just drift away: like to the moon."

"Time is like a river, flowing ever on, leaving us behind on the shore. And when we are gone, all that remains of us are shadows dancing on the wind. Our successes and failures, our victories and defeats, truths and falsehoods, loves and hates--in the end they are all the same."

"I can put needles and knives into myself, but I am horrified by an itch on my foot, or by my period, which brings a terror to my eyes because I never invited it and it's not just in my house, it's in my body. My period never feels like a visitor of nature. It feels like sexual harrassment.
I like cuts - they comfort me - I can't lie. My thoughts are messy, my emotions are messy, my body goes in and out at will. The raised white scars on my arms and legs are the only aspect of my being that come close to minimalism. They come from chaos, but it is hard to carve frustration and unease into the flesh. Only straight lines. Every fear, every night terror, every hour I cried for Liev, every fight with Sebastian is registered as a neat white scar. The tattoos came because, as angry as I was, I was also tired.
Every now and then I'll be so sad and so lazy that I'll pay someone to interpret it all in needle and ink. "Do what you like," I say, because the eventual pattern is irrelevant. I just want to feel the needle and see, next day, next week, forever, the reminder that it really happened, that I really was that sad. Because when I'm on the upswing, manic as anything, I can't imagine that I will ever come down."

"The years that are gone seem like dreams—if one might go on sleeping and dreaming—but to wake up and find—oh! well! perhaps it is better to wake up after all, even to suffer, rather than to remain a dupe to illusions all one's life."

"'I didn't die,' she said. 'I just - went away.'"

"And I tried again and I was almost there, and now I could all but touch it and hold it: yet I was not quite there, I did not touch it or hold it. I still shrank from dying unto death and living unto life."

"In the beginning, there was nothing at all but the moon and the sun. And the moon wanted to come out during the day, but there was something so much brighter that seemed to fill up all those hours. The moon grew hungry, thinner and thinner, until she was just a slice of herself, and her tips were as sharp as a knif. By accident, because that is the way most things happen, she poked a hole in the night and spilled a million stars, like a fountain of tears.
"Horrified, the moon tried to swallow them up. And sometimes this worked, because she got fatter and rounder. But mostly it didn't, because there were just so many. The stars kept coming, until they made the sky so bright that the sun got jealous. He invited the stars to his side of the world, where it was always bright. What he didn't tell them, though, was that in daytime, they'd never be seen. So the stupid ones leaped from the sky to the ground, and they froze under the weight of their own foolishness.
"The moon did her best. She carved each of these blocks of sorrow into a man or a woman. She spent the rest of her time watching out so that her other stars wouldn't fall. She spent the rest of her time holding on to whatever scraps she had left."

(I shut my eyes tightly and wrapped my arms protectively around myself and asked mindlessly: what was the wind? And, just as mindlessly, something answered: the dead screaming.)

Yet, could it be a sin if you did it out of love, if you surrendered to a terrible longing, if, by surrendering, you ended the torture, sweet as it was, that made you run the streets with no destination, that took away your appetite, that kept you tossing in bed, that made you so happy one minute that your body sang like a violin and so miserable the next that you wanted to cry?

"I never thought there would be anything worse than being alone at night. but there is - being alone in the crowd."

Love keeps you smiling when you're alone on the train. Love is when you look into the other person's eyes and the world truly disappears and you don't care if anyone else is looking. Love is when you want to spend every second with him. Love is when you want to be with him, have a home to go back to, and you want to touch him every second of the day.
Love is nothing that others say, love to you may be nothing that I said, but it is so amazing, nothing can describe it. When you feel it, you'll know it, and you'll know why the world talks about it, sing about it, desire for it. It truly completes you.

"How cruel the floating world
Its solaces how few -
And soon my unmourned life
Will vanish with the dew."

It is often the most deserving people who cannot help loving those who destroy them.

"Once, in my father's bookshop, I heard a regular customer say that few things leave a deeper mark on a reader than the first book that finds its way into his heart. Those first images, the echo of words we think we have left behind, accompany us throughout our lives and sculpt a place in our memory to which, sooner or later-- no matter how many books we read, how many worlds we discover, or how much we learn to forget-- we will return. For me those enchanted pages will always be the ones I found among the passageways of the Cemetery of Forgotten Books."

"And no matter how well we think we know people, the fact is we're all strangers in the end"

When you have stepped through the looking glass, you step back at your peril. The mirror may cut you to shreds.

There will come a time, he thought, when I will look back on this night, when I will lie in another bed, when happiness will have come to seem an impossibility, and I will remember this night, I will remember how happy I was, and will remember how, even when I was in the midst of my happiness, I could feel a time when it would be gone. And I will realize that this knowledge was a crucial part of that happiness... The same thought went through many remixes as he lay there, drifting, alert, sort of asleep.

Every time you think of giving up, think of the regrets you'd have doing so.

It's amazing what one person can do. Some people build you up just to bend and break you. Some people bring out parts of you that you had no clue existed. All throughout life we meet people and every single one of them brings something to us, gives us some sort of purpose. We come across people that will hurt us so incredibly much that it seems unbearable to go on with our lives, but the truth is - We can overcome anything we want to if we believe in it enough, if we have faith in ourselves, in who we are. The most important thing in life is to find yourself, know who you are at all times and stand by that for the rest of your life. No one has the right to tell you who you are or try and control your life because it's yours. Your life is meant to be lived by no one else but yourself. We sometimes let people get the best of us, destroy us and change our opinions on what we believe is true. Only you can know what is right for yourself, you have the power, you make the choices and you learn. Each experience we go through in life is a lesson to be learned. We all make mistakes, why is that so hard for some to understand? No one should be judged by the mistakes they have made. It's past news. Everything happens for a reason, and without the hard times, how would we ever realize our truth strength? It's only through a time of suffering when we realize how strong we truly are inside, when we realize how much we can actually put up with and deal with before we eventually break. Life is a roller coaster, a never ending cycle. Every person is unique and beautiful in their own way. Each individual has a beauty that is unexpressed. Beauty is within. You love a person for how they make you feel, for their courage and compassion. I believe we always go back to the people that were there in the beginning. You create so much history with certain people, they become a part of you, they're in your heart. Even though miles may seperate you and maybe you have even grown apart, there are those certain people that will somehow always be in your heart forever.

The night had fallen quickly, the world hurrying to end itself, like I often did, rushing to darkness.

“If ever there is tomorrow when we're not together.. There is something you must always remember. You are braver than you believe, stronger than you seem, and smarter than you think. But the most important thing is, even if we're apart... I'll always be with you.”

Sometimes it's a sad song, but I cannot forget, refuse to regret, the summer I met you and you took my breath away. It made everyday worth all of the pain that I have gone through.

I'm blasting my music so I won't hear my thoughts,
but it's stupid because the lyrics just remind me
of what I'm trying to forget. How did you manage to
get all these people to sing about you?

Why is it that when you miss somebody so much
that your heart is ready to disintegrate,
you always hear the saddest song ever on the radio?

Life is like getting lost.
You know where you want to end up -
you're just not sure how to get there.

Remember I will be there
when your life goes hectic and wrong
I'm always here to help you. I've been here all along.

I know that there are some things you just can't change.
I know that there are some situations where apologies hold no bearings.
I know that hurt feelings build walls.
I know that some people connect once and are bonded for a lifetime.
I know that in a different time and place we were those people.
I know that being "friends again" can be more difficult than not speaking at all.
I know that twists of fate bring people together and sometimes
"everything happens for a reason" breaks them apart.
I know that I'll never forget you, for you will always have a place in my heart.

I trusted you more then anyone before. And you let me down.

If i had nothing, but still had you
i would still have everything i've
ever needed.

I'm afraid of time. I mean, I'm afraid of not having enough time. Not enough time to understand people, how they really are, or to be understood myself. I'm afraid of the quick judgements and mistakes that everybody makes, You can't fix them without time. I'm afraid of seeing snapshots instead of movies.

I spoke to you in cautious tones
You answered me with no pretense
And still I feel I said too much
My silence is my self defense

And every time Ive held a rose
It seems I only felt the thorns
And so it goes, and so it goes
And so will you soon I suppose

No matter how long we don't talk,
no matter how many fights we get in,
no matter how far away we live from each other,
no matter the people we have relationships with in our lives,
I've gotta admit something to you:
I will always love you.
There's always that little part of me that misses you,
and I can't seem to push it away...

Everything you've done in your life, every experience, every thought, every movement, has led you to this, has led you to now. Everything that happens is for a reason. Every success, every defeat, everything. Nothing is an accident.

I remember every song he's ever sang, every band he said he ever liked, every moment we ever had, no matter how small. It's those types of things make me realize that even when he's out of my life, he won't ever be out of my heart.

"And I guess I'm just scared. Scared of everything. But I do that sometimes. I overanalyze alot of things that should simply be left alone and I become terrified of nothing. And I can't help but to be scared of what might happen now. Because now that we're both in this thing together...now that I've got you...I've got something to lose. Cause I've seen relationships fall apart...and I've seen bonds break with the snap of a finger. And I'm terrified of losing this wonderful feeling that I feel whenever I'm around you. I'm not really sure how to explain it, but you take my breath away. You really do. And it's the most amazing thing I've ever known. I know it and I feel it and I feel you, and it's beautiful. And I don't ever want to lose that. I don't ever want to lose you. "

When pursued, one runs away; when pushed away, one pursues- thus is the way of human emotion.

There are no random acts. We are all connected. You can no more separate one life from another than you can separate a breeze from the wind.

Do you realize what you are to me?
What you're always gonna be?
You're the love of my life.
Everyone else will always be second best.
There will never be another you.
Sometimes I wish I had never met you,
because then I could go to sleep not
knowing someone like you was out there.
I never thought I would risk
the chance of getting hurt again
but for some reason, when I`m with you
it all seems worth it.

We don't read and write poetry because it's cute. We read and write poetry because we are members of the human race. And the human race is filled with passion. And medicine, law, business, engineering - these are noble pursuits and necessary to sustain life. But poetry, beauty, romance, love - these are what we stay alive for.

"Love dosent end in hate, it ends in indifference."

A couple of hundred years ago, Benjamin Franklin shared with the world the secret of his success. Never leave that till tomorrow, he said, which you can do today. This is the man who discovered electricity. You think more people would listen to what he had to say. I don't know why we put things off, but if I had to guess, I'd have to say it has a lot to do with fear. Fear of failure, fear of rejection, sometimes the fear is just of making a decision, because what if you're wrong? What if you're making a mistake you can't undo? The early bird catches the worm. A stitch in time saves nine. He who hesitates is lost. We can't pretend we hadn't been told. We've all heard the proverbs, heard the philosophers, heard our grandparents warning us about wasted time, heard the damn poets urging us to seize the day. Still sometimes we have to see for ourselves. We have to make our own mistakes. We have to learn our own lessons. We have to sweep today's possibility under tomorrow's rug until we can't anymore. Until we finally understand for ourselves what Benjamin Franklin really meant. That knowing is better than wondering, that waking is better than sleeping, and even the biggest failure, even the worst, beat the hell out of never trying.

Maybe we like the pain. Maybe we're wired that way. Because without it, I don't know; maybe we just wouldn't feel real. What's that saying? Why do I keep hitting myself with a hammer? Because it feels so good when I stop.

"And it came to me then. That we were wonderful traveling companions but in the end no more than lonely lumps of metal in their own separate orbits. From far off they look like beautiful shooting stars, but in reality they're nothing more than prisons, where each of us is locked up alone, going nowhere. When the orbits of these two satellites of ours happened to cross paths, we could be together. Maybe even open up our hearts to eachother. But that was only for the briefest moment. In the next instant we'd be in absolute solitude. Until we burned up and became nothing."

We hope and wish to find that special person, that one person who completes us... and it hurts so much when they love someone else. When we finally do get the person of our dreams, they leave sooner or later...gone from our life like a feather floating away never to be seen again. We cry endlessly for many nights, remembering their smile, their kind words, their warm embrace. You can't help but feel joy when you think of their sweet kisses or that special feeling you got whenever you saw them. You dream of them and wake up smiling, until you realize it was only a dream and the closest thing you have to that person are the memories and times you shared, that made it all worthwhile. I guess that's why we torture ourselves with love.

The music is my confident.
It gives me a sense of direction.
It makes me not feel as alone as I am.
It makes me realize that there are other broken hearted people out there,
other people trying to succeed and trying to figure out who they are.
But mostly, the empty feeling seems to fill up and I get hope from the music

I wanted it to stop, like you can just pull the plug of a computer out of the wall if it crashes, because I wanted to go to sleep so that I wouldn’t have to think because the only thing I could think was how much it hurt because there was no room for anything else in my head, but I couldn’t go to sleep and I just had to sit there and there was nothing to do except to wait and to hurt.

“I love you without knowing how, or when, or from where. I love you straightforwardly, without complexities or pride; so I love you because I know no other way.”

Righteousness begins when one sees the yoke others bear.

So she had to satisfy herself with the idea of love--loving the loving of things whose existence she didn't care at all about. Love itself became the object of her love. She loved herself in love, she loved loving love, as love loves loving, and was able, in that way, to reconcile herself with a world that fell so short of what she would have hoped for. It was not the world that was the great and saving lie, but her willingness to make it beautiful and fair, to live a once-removed life, in a world once-removed from the one in which everyone else seemed to exist.

...it's wrong what they say about the past, I've learned, about how you can bury it. Because the past claws its way out.

She entered the story knowing she would emerge from it feeling she had been immersed in the lives of others, in plots that stretched back twenty years, her body full of sentences and moments, as if waking from sleep with a heaviness caused by unremembered dreams.

Turn the page
It hurts to look
Smiling faces
My heart aches
I miss them all
Where'd they go?
Lost in the depths of time gone by

and no one knows the thoughts, the dreams
and the ideas she's got and contains inside
she's broken apart and her heart
is still looking for somewhere to feel alright

You know that boy that you can never get out of your head? The one that seems to
relate to everything you do, every song, every word? The one that, at the mere
mention of his name, your entire face lights up? The one that has full capacity to break
your heart...
Yeah, that's you.

i can't get you out of my mind. i keep thinking of how much
i love talking to you, how good you look when you smile,
or how much i love your laugh. i day dream about you off and on,
replaying pieces of our conversations, laughing at funny things
you said or did. i've memorized your face and the way you look at me.
i wonder what will happen next time we are together, and even though
neither one of us know what the future holds, i know one thing's for sure... you're the best thing that has happened to me in a long time.

“You know that apple Adam ate in the Bible?” he asked. “You know what was in that apple? Logic. Logic and intellectual stuff. That was all that was in it. So—this is my point—what you have to do is vomit it up if you want to see things as they really are. I mean if you vomit it up, then you won’t have any more trouble with blocks of wood and stuff. You won’t see everything stopping off all the time. And you’ll know what your arm really is, if you’re interested. Do you know what I mean? Do you follow me?”
“I follow you,” Nicholson said, rather shortly.
“The trouble is,” Teddy said, “most people don’t want to see things the way they are. They don’t even want to stop getting born and dying all the time. They just want new bodies all the time, instead of stopping and staying with God, where it’s really nice.” He reflected. “I never saw such a bunch of apple-eaters,” he said. He shook his head.

"Real isn't how you are made," Said the Skin Horse, "It's a thing that happens to you when a child loves you for a long time, not just to play with but really loves you, then you become real."
"Does it hurt?" Asked the rabbit.
"Sometimes," said the Skin Horse, "when you are real you don't mind being hurt...It doesn't happen all at once...you Become. It takes a long time, thats why it doesn't often happen to people who break easily or have sharp edges...but these things don't matter at all, because once you are real you can't be ugly, except to people who don't understand."

"You had to decide what was estimable and precious in your life and set out to find it. The objects you valued defined you. So did this quest."

"There is no time, Don't tell me so,
I need such endless peace
I've knelt and worshipped at your shrine,
and rest, I feel, is surely mine
What more is there, I truly seek
The calmness of an end
So please don't tell me there is time
Death, greet your weary friend."

'Love those who hate you, but to love those you hate is impossible. Forgive me for having upset you. Everyone has enough grief of his own.'

The Distance is the hardest part of our relationship...
But distance doesn't matter when you love someone as much as I love you..

I have been told, and recently started to believe that love has 3 levels :
The first love level is how you love your family. That's a given. You may not admit to loving them, but it's something that arrives the day you are born. You are bonded by blood, a complex, but simple love.
The second love level is the way you love your friends. How you love your friends is the middle category between family and lovers. Friends can easily move up or down levels to being a lover and/or family(to an extent). From my point of view, being a friend has oh so many advantages, such as the shifting of categories. There are times when you tell your friend(s) you love them; there are times when you really dont need to/have to vocalize that aspect of your relationship because that's how strong a friendship can be. You dont necessarily overflow with love when you are with a friend, its almost like a strong appreciation.
The last, but the strongest love level is, the way you actually love. The way you vent your love to an individual. The way that this love spills out when you are around them; how you just dont want to keep it in. The type of love that makes you want to express anything and everything and never stop. The love that almost makes everything seem perfect. The best love, but also the worst love. The hardest love, the most tragic love, the love that has the unruliest way of breaking your heart. Being in love with a very well known stranger; not someone bonded to you by blood, but someone you consider more than a friend. Someone you feel incredibly passionate about. Definitely the strongest and most perfervid level.

Nunc scio quit sit amor.
Latin- "Now I know what love is."

There's a difference between giving up & letting go -- giving up
is sacrificing what is rightfully yours, letting go is forgetting what was never yours.

The darkness had already fallen above me with an answer to it all. It moved over everything, over good and evil, over impure and pious men just the same. Just the same. There was no difference between a saint and a sinner in the skin, in the flesh. It all came from the sweet blood within. It all came from the tender truth hidden deep insde. The difference between the two was a thin, wavering gentle line. It might change in the heart with each lulling beat. It might change in the soft time it takes to breathe. I had done my best to be a good man. I had done my best to live a decent life, even if I had fallen short some of the time. I had tried to keep my heart pure and return the love I had felt, and it wasn't until then, when I was on that bus alone, that I thought I might be all right. Maybe it's not a thing that's easy to see or feel. Maybe it isn't exactly clear how your heart beats, good or evil, dishonest or sweet until it's your time all alone in the dark, listening to the quiet whisper of your own lonely heart, the empty thump of your own fears shivering like an old kettle drum, bent and rusted and warped all wrong, or the distant murmur of all your hope, the lonely lullaby of a hula girl's song.

"The best moments in reading are when you come across something - a thought, a feeling, a way of looking at things - which you had thought special and particular to you. Now here it is, set down by someone else, a person you have never met, someone even who is long dead. And it is as if a hand has come out and taken yours."

"She loved being a horse perhaps most of all. She ran fast as the wind. A dark star blazed on her forehead. Running in clover, in heaths, o'er hill and vale -- never mind it was suburban New Jersey, never mind. Limitation, like death, an unimaginable thing. Her heart beating wildly as she raced through every time and every terrain, won't die, won't die, her extraordinary, complicated tangle of a mane, the nostrils flaring, the mouth and the eyes -- devouring, the pounding of hoofs, universe, imagination on fire -- the child. Utterly dizzied by the contours of the world -- and the word. It's rhythms -- it's heat and light. Of everything there is to say and everything there is to do and be."

Sometimes the appropriate response to reality is to go insane.

Once upon a time there was a boy who lived in a house across the field from a girl who no longer exists. They made up a thousand games. She was Queen and he was King. In the autumn light, her hair shone like a crown. They collected the world in small handfuls. When the sky grew dark they parted with leaves in their hair.

Once upon a time there was a boy who loved a girl, and her laughter was a question he wanted to spend his whole life answering. When they were ten he asked her to marry him. When they were eleven he kissed her for the first time. When they were thirteen they got into a fight and for three weeks they didn't talk. When they were fifteen she showed him the scar on her left breast. Their love was a secret they told no one. He promised her he would never love another girl as long as he lived. What if I die? she asked. Even then, he said. For her sixteenth birthday he gave her an English dictionary and together they learned the words. What's this? he'd ask, tracing his index finger around her ankle, and she look it up. And this? he'd ask, kissing her elbow. Elbow! What kind of word is that? and then he'd lick it, making her giggle. What about this? he asked, touching the soft skin behind her ear. I don't know, she said, turning off the flashlight and rolling over, with a sigh, onto her back. When they were seventeen they made love for the first time, on a bed of straw in a shed.
Later -- when things happened that they could never have imagined -- she wrote him a letter that said: When will you learn that there isn't a word for everything?

"Then must you strive to be worthy of her love. Be brave and pure, fearless to the strong and humble to the weak; and so, whether this love prosper or no, you will have fitted yourself to be honored by a maiden's love, which is, in sooth, the highest guerdon which a true knight can hope for."

"No, you are not worthy of the love which I have devoted to you. I knew all along that the prize I had set my life on was not worth the winning; that I was a fool, with fond fancies, too, bartering away my all of truth and ardour against your little feeble remnant of love. I will bargain no more: I withdraw."

"Accounts are not quite settled between us," said she, with a passion that equaled my own. "I can love, and I can hate. You had your choice. You chose to spurn the first; now you must test the other."

"Well," said she, after a pause, "if you despise my love, I must see what can be done with fear. You smile, but the day will come when you will come screaming to me for pardon."

"You don't want to love--your eternal and abnormal craving is to be loved. You aren't positive, you're negative. You absorb, absorb, as if you must fill yourself up with love, because you've got a shortage somewhere."

'Tis strange what a man may do, and a woman yet think him an angel.

"When ladies as young, and good, and beautiful as you are," replied the girl steadily, "give away your hearts, love will carry you all lengths--even such as you, who have home, friends, other admirers, everything, to fill them. When such as I, who have no certain roof but the coffin lid, and no friend in sickness or death but the hospital nurse, set our rotten hearts on any man, and let him fill the place that has been a blank through all our wretched lives, who can hope to cure us?"

. . . what loneliness is more lonely than distrust?

Look round and round upon this bare bleak plain, and see even here, upon a winter's day, how beautiful the shadows are! Alas! it is the nature of their kind to be so. The loveliest things in life, Tom, are but shadows; and they come and go, and change and fade away, as rapidly as these!

Whats a soul mate? well, it's like a best friend but more, its the one person in the world who knows you better than anyone else. Its someone who makes you a better person, but actually they don't make you a better person, you do that yourself, because they inspire you. A soul mate is someone you carry with you forever. It's the one person who knew you and accepted you and believed in you before anyone else did, or when no one else would. And no matter what happens, you'll always love them. Nothing can ever change that.

Real love is feeling like being a part of that person's
life almost isn't enough. It's more like a feeling that
you would live in the same skin with them if you could
and share every thought, heart beat, and emotion as one

Te amo con todo mi corazón
-i love u with all my heart-

If I could have just one wish,
I would wish to wake up everyday
to the sound of your breath on my neck,
the warmth of your lips on my cheek,
the touch of your fingers on my skin,
and the feel of your heart beating with mine...
Knowing that I could never find that feeling
with anyone other than you.

It is human nature to take the most magical of worlds for granted, turning each one into a blank canvas upon which to paint the lives of those who would live there. Only an outsider can see a world's wonders for what they truly are.

People who've a real live love do not have time for love poems. They do not! They make love on a continual basis and the book lies closed beneith the bed, lies in wait for the sad times when love is not there. What wife would rather have a book in her arms at night then her man? It is his eyes I crave, not little black scratches on dry paper.

He was always seeking for a meaning in life, and here it seemed to him that a meaning was offered; but it was obscure and vague. He was profoundly troubled. He saw what looked like the truth as by flashes of lightning on a dark, stormy night you might see on a mountain range. He seemed to see that a man need not leave his life to chance, but that his will was powerful; he seemed to see that self-control might be as passionate and active as the surrender to passion; he seemed to see that the inward life might be as manifold, as varied, as rich with experience, as the life of one who conquered realms and explored unknown lands.

There was a watery green light. There was the ordinary business of living and dying, but the trees had no words in their language for that. It wasn't something a tree would understand. She would have herself put under a tree, so that its roots could wrap themselves around her, enter her body. She wouldn't disappear. She would go up into the branches.

"Death must be so beautiful. To lie in the soft brown earth, with the grasses waving above one's head, and listen to silence. To have no yesterday, and no to-morrow. To forget time, to forgive life, to be at peace."

"I've pitied you most when I've seen the uncertainty in your heart that you think you conceal. I pity you because I see all the wonderful gifts that you have, and at the same time I see your own struggle to understand who you really are and what you really wanr. I remember thinking just before you looked at me that if things had been different, I would have loved to bring light to some of those dark places."

There has fallen a splendid tear
From the passion-flower at the gate.
She is coming, my dove, my dear;
She is coming, my life, my fate;
The red rose cries, "She is near, she is near";
And the white rose weeps, "She is late";
The larkspur listens, "I hear, I hear";
And the lily whispers, "I wait."

"Treasure left me. 'I'm so sorry,' she said. 'I understand how awful you must feel.'
Choking, I told her she couldn't even begin to understand. She insisted that she could.'You know you'll never find anyone as pretty as me,' she explained, 'or as nice, and your every moment will be clouded by nagging recollections of times we spent together; times when you wrongly believed we had some kind of future. Believe me, I understand,' she said, gently. 'A part of you has died, the part capable of loving and trusting, and you know you'll never get it back. Stuff like that.'"

Don't make me happy. Please, don't fill me up and let me think that something good can come from any of this. Look at my bruises. Look at this graze. Do you see the graze inside me? Do you see it growing before your eyes, eroding me? I don't want to hope for anything anymore.

Closing Sohrab's door, I wondered if that was how forgiveness budded, not with the fanfare of epiphany, but with pain gathering its things, packing up, and slipping away unannounced in the middle of the night.

So that's how we live our lives. No matter how deep and fatal the loss, no matter how important the thing that's stolen from us - that's snatched right out of our hands - even if are left completely changed people with only the outer layer of skin from before, we continue to play out our lives this wat, in silence. We draw ever nearer to our allotted span of time, bidding it farewell as it trails off behind. Repeating, often adroitly, the endless deeds of the everyday. Leaving behind a feeling of immeasurable emptiness.

"I really wanted to see you," I said.
"And I really wanted to see you, too," she said.
"When I couldn't see you any more, I realised that it was as clear as if the planets all of a sudden lined up in a row for me. I really need you. You're a part of me I'm a part of you. You know somewhere - I think I cut something's throat. Sharpening my knife, my heart a stone. Symbolically, like making a gate in China. Do you understand what I'm saying?"
"I think so."
"Then come and get me."

They are without respect for all things living, including themselves.

"Think how you love me," she whispered. "I don't ask you to love me always like this, but I ask you to remember. Somewhere inside me there'll always be the person I am to-night."

A voice said, Look me in the stars and tell me truly, men of earth,
If all the soul-and-body scars were not too much to pay for birth.

"Sometimes we expect more from others,
Because we'd be willing to do more for them."

"In all the languages of the world, there is the same proverb: "What the eyes don't see, the heart doesn't grieve over." Well, I say that there isn't an ounce of truth in it. The further off they are, the closer to the heart are all those feelings that we try to repress and forget. If we're in exile, we want to store away every tiny memory of our roots. If we're far from the person we love, everyone we pass in the streets reminds us of them.

In the chilly hours and minutes
Of uncertainty
I wanna be
In the warmhold of your Loving mind.
To feel you all around me
And to take your hand
Along the sand,
Ah, but I may as well try and catch the wind.
When sundown pales the sky
I wanna hide a while
Behind your smile,
And everywhere I'd look, your eyes I'd find.
For me to love you now
Would be the sweetest thing,
'T would make me sing,
Ah, but I may as well try and catch the wind.
When rain has hung the leaves with tears
I want you near
To kill my fears,
To help me to leave all my blues behind.
For standing in your heart
Is where I wanna be
And I long to be,
Ah, but I may as well try and catch the wind.

"Perhaps we don't fully recover from our first loves. Perhaps, in the extravagance of youth, we give away our devotions easily and all but arbitrarily, in the mistaken assumption that we'll always have more to give."

The secert to happiness and well-being is no mystery. All it takes is the ability to do the following:
Admit errors
Avoid mistakes
Listen to advice
Keep your temper
Shouder the blame
Make the best of things
Maintain high standards
Think first and act accordingly
Put the needs of others before your own

Our birth is but a sleep and a forgetting:
The Soul that rises with us, our life's Star,
Hath had elsewhere its setting,
And cometh from afar:
Not in entire forgetfulness,
And not in utter nakedness,
But trailing clouds of glory do we come
From God, who is our home

"There," she said to him, and he looked, and the light poured through the window, brighter and brighter, and his eyes saw it, and hers, and she was aware of bliss, a word she didn't like, but the only one. There was her body, quiet, used, resting; there was her mind, free, clear, shining; there was the boy and his eyes, seeing what? And ecstasy. Things would hurt when this light dimmed. The boy would change. But now in the sun she recognized him, and recognized that she did not know, and had never seen him, and loved him, in the bright new air with a simplicity she had never expected to know. "You," she said to him, skin for the first time on skin in the outside air, which was warm and shining, "you."

your voice was the soundtrack of my
summer, do you know you're unlike
any other? your eyes are the brightest
of all the colors. i don't ever want
to love another.

He was beginning to feel a comfortable place inside himself, close to his own beating heart, near his own warm belly; he crawled inside and watched the storm swirling on the outside and he was safe there; the winds of rage could not touch him.

A little boy asked his mother, "Why are you crying?" "Because I'm a woman," she told him. "I don't understand," he said. His Mom just hugged him and said, "And you never will."
Later the little boy asked his father, "Why does mother seem to cry for no reason?" "All women cry for no reason," was all his dad could say.
The little boy grew up and became a man, still wondering why women cry. Finally he put in a call to God. When God got on the phone, he asked, "God, why do women cry so easily?"
God said: "When I made the woman she had to be special. I made her shoulders strong enough to carry the weight of the world, yet gentle enough to give comfort. I gave her an inner strength to endure childbirth and the rejection that many times comes from her children. I gave her a hardness that allows her to keep going when everyone else gives up, and take care of her family through sickness and fatigue without complaining. I gave her the sensitivity to love her children under any and all circumstances, even when her child has hurt her very badly. I gave her strength to carry her husband through his faults and fashioned her from his rib to protect his heart. I gave her wisdom to know that a good husband never hurts his wife, but sometimes tests her strengths and her resolve to stand beside him unfalteringly. And finally, I gave her a tear to shed. This is hers exclusively to use whenever it is needed."
"You see my son," said God, "the beauty of a woman is not in the clothes she wears, the figure that she carries, or the way she combs her hair. The beauty of a woman must be seen in her eyes, because that is the doorway to her heart - the place where love resides."

I turn away and I walk to the shower and I step into the shower and I am pummeled by the heat. It burns me and it turns my skin red and it hurts but I won't step away from it. I deserve this hurt for not being brave enough to look at myself. I deserve this hurt and I will stand and I will take it because I am not brave enough to look into my own eyes.

"I don't want to live. I want to love first, and live incidentally."

Every man carries two bags about with him, one in front and one behind, and both are packed full of faults. The bag in front contains his neighbors' faults, the one behind his own. Hence it is that men do not see their own faults, but never fail to see those of others.

'I stood still, vision blurring, and in that moment, I heard my heart break. It was a small, clean sound, like the snapping of a flower's stem...'

"Any woman can weep without tears," she answered over her shoulder, "and most can heal with their hands. It depends on the wound. She is a woman, and that's riddle enough."

This life is like a slow but gentle torture and for me the most terrible aspect of my imprisonement is the loneliness. For the first time ever I feel truly lonely: I'm without the comfort afforded by others, my loved ones, my friends. It's not a question of solitude: one can bear solitude, but no one likes to feel lonely.

"You feel like faded graffiti on a building they bout to tear down - something a man worked hard on to try to make the world a more beautiful place, and nobody appreciated it. Or cracked glass in the street that used to be something pretty, but the cars keep driving over it like it never really mattered or was never anything whole and real."

"She holds the empty glass high over her head, then throws it at the blue icy street as hard as she can, listening to the satisfying crash and watching the shards skid across the ice and snow and scatter, sparkling, dangerous."

The more things change, the more they stay the same. I'm not sure who the first person was who said that. Probably Shakespeare. Or maybe Sting. But at the moment, it's the sentence that best explains my tragic flaw: my inability to change. I don't think I'm alone in this. The more I get to know other people, the more I realize it's kind of everyone's flaw. Staying exactly the same as long as possible, standing perfectly still. It feels better somehow. And if you are suffering, at least the pain is familiar. Because if you took the leap of faith, went outside the box, did something unexpected. Who knows what other pain might be waiting out there. Chances are it could be even worse. So you maintain the status quo. Choose the road already traveled and it doesn't seem that bad. Not as far as flaws go. You're not killing anyone. Except maybe yourself a little. When we finally do change, I don't think it happens like an earthquake or an explosion, where all of a sudden we're like this different person. I think it's smaller than that. The kind of thing most people wouldn't even notice unless they looked at us really, really close. Which, thank God, they never do. But you notice it. Inside you that change feels like a world of difference. And you hope this is it. This is the person you get to be forever. that you'll never have to change again.

I don't want to lose you. I can't imagine ever feeling this strongly about anything or anybody ever again. This was unexpected, my soul's connection to you. You stole my loneliness. No one knows that I was wishing for you, a thief, to enter my house of autonomy, that I had locked my doors but my Windows were open, hoping, but not believing, you would enter.

how far do you take a thing like this? i think you take it all the way to heart. we give what we can -- that's as far as the heart can go.

As always with me, happiness comes with a tinge of something like grief. The present always reminds me of the past. Nostalgia is such a strange emotion, deepening pleasure by reminding me of something no longer present. Waves of the past roll and break powerfully over the sights and sounds of tonight.

"She only looked away for a moment, and the mask slipped, and you fell. All your tomorrows start here."

She began to speak less, silent now by the fire at night, no longer telling the children stories or singing or laughing. She felt she was shrinking, that if she kept quiet she might become less visible, and be able to escape the suspicion entrapping her, the nameless threat hanging in the air.

"Heaven knows we need never be ashamed of our tears, for they are rain upon the blinding dust of earth, overlaying our hard hearts."

…we all want to leave our signature. Our lasting effect. Your life after death. We all want to explain ourselves. Nobody wants to be forgotten.

My peace depends upon hers:
what pleases her gives me life,
that which pains her gives me death.
If she sighs, I will sigh as well,
her anger and her sorrows are mine
and I have no joy unless she shares it.
Bloody Demise of a Fallen Dream
29 May 2006 @ 05:24 pm
"There is just something magical about words effecting your very soul...mingling with your hurts and dreams, like blood, but it makes a beautiful painting that cannot be explained...only felt with your heart." -Me

" I have nothing to say, but I want to say it all the same."

"God is not afraid of your questions. He wants you to test Him...so He may prove Himself faithful. The person who fears to doubt, in that fear doubts God."

"God is merciful, but sometimes He must wound us in order to heal us."

"Sometimes God speaks to us face-to-face, and sometimes He speaks in the shadows. But He always speaks...when we are ready to listen."

"It is a fact that the human heart differs from all other species. While its function to the body is that of all animals, its participation with the human soul is both rhapsodic and fatal."

"To rise to higher joy is to risk a deeper sorrow.Do I dare reach for the sun?"

"What I know is little to what I hope to know. What I feel is already too much."

"Of all life's betrayers, the heart is the worst. It flutters with joyful anticipation, leading down paths better untrod. Now that I know my heart, I must never follow it again."

"If the eye is the window to the soul, and from the abundance of the heart the mouth speaks, why can't we all be blind and dumb?"

"Is it possible to live someone else's life? If so, I have left mine and entered the mind and body of a stranger....whom I don't much like and trust not at all."

"To think is pain; to remember, torment; but to consider the future-more than I can bear."

"A single moment of joy can slake the throat of a dying spirit. An act of kindness, no matter how small, becomes a mercy drop from heaven."

"Is a violent deed more heinous than a violent thought? The thought and deed spring from the same spirit."

"What is fear but an irrational longing to retain what I do not want?"

"I am no longer what I might have been, nor can I ever be. Yet this body is stubborn in resolve. It will not cease."

"Death is a wily opponent, sneaking up on the unwary, yet eluding the deserving."

"What is a lie but a shade of the truth?"

"To find beauty is to know mercy."

"Sometimes need wears a face, and once recognized, it cannot be ignored."

"I think God allows hardship so that in alleviating it, we might understand His mercy."

"What hateful seed germinates in the heart of men to find release through their tongues and fill the air with venom?"

"I look on her whom life has bruised in heart and mind and soul. Though other hands have broken her, now mine must make her whole."

"Take heed before you give your heart, for given once, 'tis ere more lost. And though it beats within your breast, each steadfast beat now bears a cost."

"What stench is in a tainted soul that righteous men recoil, some fetid, darksome malady which make their blood to boil. Why not instead a cleansing balm to wash away the stain, and let men see as God has seen the weariness and pain."

"Of all iniquities and sins, judgement I despise. Enthroned, the self on dais raised, looks down with jaundiced eyes."

"Hatred: Forged in the heart, like poisoned air it seeps, from lips and eyes finding escape. And I? I am the smith who hammers it into the hearts of those I would esteem, those I wish esteemed me."

"Oh sweet and painful love, thou needle in my heart; should I draw you forth and let the bleeding start?"

"What hold the flesh upon the soul that yearns for purity, while mind and body clash and strive for human surety. Ah, my spirit, be assured, your wait is nigh to done; for soon I deem all earthly joy for me there will be none."

"No horror terrifies the soul, like rendering the flesh unwhole; poor feeble spirit tethered by a mangled man too dense to die."

"Forgiven, forgotten, the sins once held tight. Surrender may render one stripped of one's right. But the chalice of malice one drinks quid pro quo, is purged of its scourge when we mercy may show."

"Tears of silence cried deep inside, searching in wonder for something once believe to be there, the soul attempts to recover,
feeling eternally lost."

"It is no sin to attempt and fail. The only sin is not to make the attempt."

"We all live under the same sky but we dont have the same horizon."

"There's one thing worse than being alone:wishing you were."

"Our language has wisely sensed the two sides of being alone. It has created the world "loneliness" to express the pain of being alone. And it has created the word "solitude" to express the glory of being alone."

"The man who goes alone can start today; but he who travels with another must wait until the other is ready."

"Our credulity is greatest concerning the thing we know least about. And since we know least about ourselves, we are ready to believe all that is said about us. Hence the mysterious power of both flattery and calumny."

"Maybe taking ourselves for somebody else means that we cannot bear to see ourselves as we are."

"Our opinion of people depends less upon what we see in them than upon what they make us see in ourselves."

"One can only face in others what one can face in oneself."

"Be yourself. No one can ever tell you you're doing it wrong."

"We judge ourselves by what we feel capable of doing, while others judge us by what we have already done."

"Words are mere bubbles of water, but deeds are drops of gold."

"Watch your thoughts, they become words. Watch your words, they become actions. Watch your actions, they become habits. Watch your habits, they become character. Watch your character, it becomes your destiny."

"Absence diminished little passions and increases great ones just as the wind blows out a candle and fans a fire."

"For a man to achieve all that is demanded of him he must regard himself as greater than he is."

"Three great essentials to achieve anything worthwhile are, first, hard work; second, stick-to-itiveness; third, common sense."

"It is by acts and not by ideas that people live."

"It is a golden rule not to judge men by their opinions but rather by what their opinions make of them."

"Most people are other people. Their thoughts are someone else's opinions, their lives a mimicry, their passions a quotation."

"How many pessimists end up by desiring the things they fear, in order to prove that they are right?"

"Death most resembles a prophet who is without honor in his own land or a poet who is a stranger among his people."

"For what is it to die, but to stand in the sun and melt into the wind?"

"A man who won't die for something is not fit to live."

"What we have done for ourselves alone dies with us; what we have done for others and the world remains and is immortal."

"While I thought that I was learning how to live, I have been learning how to die."

"Wishful thinking leads to painful letdowns."

"To grieve deeply is to love deeply. The more you love, the more you'll grieve."

"Do you want me to tell you something really subversive? Love is everything it's cracked up to be. That's why people are so cynical about it. It really is worth fighting for, being brave for, risking everything for. And the trouble is, if you don't risk anything, you risk even more."

"The love you can't have lasts the longest, feels the strongest and hurts the most."

"The way to love anything is to realize that it might be lost."

"Love is giving someone the ability to destroy you, but trusting them not to."

"With understanding we come to know what laughing lips will never show how pain and torturing distress can masquerade as happiness."

"Drink and dance and laugh and lie, Love the reeling midnight through, For tomorrow we shall die! (But, alas, we never do.)"

"The friend who can be silent with us in a moment of despair or confusion, who can stay with us in an hour of grief and bereavement, who can tolerate not knowing... not healing, not curing... that is a friend who cares."

"Human beings, all over the earth, have this curious idea that they ought to behave in a certain way, and can't really get rid of it."

"Never be bullied into silence. Never allow yourself to be made a victim. Accept no one's definition of your life; define yourself."

"But loss is a precious stone to me, a nectar Distilled in time, preaching the truth of winter To the fallen heart that does not cease to fall."

"He who has felt the deepest grief is best able to experience supreme happiness."

"You think that the despair will stop you cold, but it doesn’t: it wraps itself up in a dark corner somewhere inside and forces the rest of your system to function, to take care of practical matters, which may not be important but which keep you going, which guarantee that you are still, somehow, alive."

"It does a person no good to be incredibly bright if at the same time she is also incredibly miserable or has such emotional impairment that she functions destructively."

"The difference between truth and fiction: fiction has to make sense."

“You use a glass mirror to see your face; you use works of art to see your soul.”

“I know that you believe you understand what you think I said, but I'm not sure you realize that what you heard is not what I meant.”

"The need to write comes from the need to make sense of one's life and discover one's usefulness."

"Her smile was undercut by a look of permanent sadness that she seemed to be trying to hide, as if she were struggling to protect you from it."

"It hurts to find out that what you wanted doesn't match what you dreamed it would be."

"When we judge or criticize another person, it says nothing about that person; it merely says something about our own need to be critical."

"I have no right, by anything I do or say, to demean a human being in his own eyes. What matters is not what I think of him; it is what he thinks of himself. To undermine a man's self-respect is a sin."

"Criticism is an indirect form of self-boasting"

"Men judge generally more by the eye than by the hand, for everyone can see and few can feel. Every one sees what you appear to be, few really know what you are."

"There would be no passion in this world if we never had to fight for what we love."

"When you are sorrowful look again in your heart, and you shall see that in truth you are weeping for that which has been your delight."

"It’s strange, the layers of misery that there are. You get used to feeling pretty miserable most of the time—what might be called “low-level misery”—a sort of permanent background of misery, and you learn to cope with it; it almost gets to feel normal. But then something happens, like me trying to draw something, which reminds you of what it was like not to feel miserable, and it hurts so much you almost just can’t bear it."

"If I let go of the feelings which cause me pain, I would have no feelings at all."

"Feminism is the radical notion that women are people."

"I sometimes wonder how all those who do not write, compose, or paint can manage to escape the madness, the melancholia, the panic-fear which is inherent in the human situation."

"We peck at you like vultures To pick you clean of madness With pills and potions And psychoanalytic thought."

"We work in the dark. We do what we can. We give what we have. Our doubt is our passion. Our passion is our task. The rest is the madness of art."

"There is no hate such as that born out of love betrayed—and my brain screamed out for revenge."

"When you are angry or frustrated, what comes out? Whatever it is, it’s a good indication of what you’re made of."

"I just hate all these extroverted, obnoxious, pseudo-bohemian losers."

"…sometimes it’s moments like that, real complicated moments, absorbing moments, that make you realize that even hard times have things in them that make you feel alive."

"We begin to live when we have conceived life as a tragedy."

"The surest sign that intelligent life exists elsewhere in the universe is that it has never tried to contact us."

"Perhaps we are looking at this from a wrong perspective, this search for the truth, the meaning of life, the reason of God. We all have this mindset that the answers are so complex and so vast that it is almost impossible to comprehend. I think, on the contrary, that the answers are so simple; so simple that it is staring us straight in the face, screaming its lungs out, and yet we fail to notice it. We’re looking through a telescope, searching the stars for the answer, when the answer is actually a speck of dirt on the telescope’s lens."

"Live as if you were to die tomorrow. Learn as if you were to live forever."

"Merely to exist is not enough."

"Each word is a small story, a thicket of meaning. ... But words are powerful mental tools. We clarify life’s confusing blur with words. We cage flooding emotions with words. We coax elusive memories with words. We educate with words."

"...words, being human made, can’t begin to capture the experience of being alive or the complex predicaments even simple people get into. Words are small shapes in the chaos of the world. They’re unwieldy, sloppy, even at their most precise. Nothing is simply blue. No one just walks. Words fail us when we need them the most. They fall into the crevasses between feelings."

"…the words that touched and merged with the blood like an embrace…"

"Reading is actually plunging into one’s own identity and, one hopes, emerging stronger than before."

"Some books are to be tasted, others to be swallowed, and some few to be chewed and digested."

"A room without books is like a body without a soul."

"Words, like Nature, half reveal And half conceal the Soul within."

"Words—so innocent and powerless as they are, as standing in a dictionary, how potent for good and evil they become in the hands of one who knows how to combine them."

"Words that do not match deeds are not important."

"A blow with a word strikes deeper than a blow with a sword."

"When will people understand that words can cut as sharply as any blade, and that those cuts leave scars upon our souls."

"A book is the only place in which you can examine a fragile thought without breaking it, or explore an explosive idea without fear it will go off in your face. It is one of the few havens remaining where a man’s mind can get both provocation and privacy."

"The worth of a book is to be measured by what you can carry away from it."

"If there’s a book you really want to read but it hasn’t been written yet, then you must write it."

"Books are the quietest and most constant of friends; they are the most accessible and wisest of counselors, and the most patient of teachers."

"Books let us into their souls and lay open to us the secrets of our own."

"It is what you read when you don’t have to that determines what you will be when you can’t help it."

"Books support us in our solitude and keep us from being a burden to ourselves."

"Fiction reveals truths that reality obscures."

"If you resist reading what you disagree with, how will you ever acquire deeper insights into what you believe? The things most worth reading are precisely those that challenge our convictions."

"To love something you know will die is holy."

"We understand death for the first time when he puts his hand upon one whom we love."

"It is a fearful thing to love what death can touch."

Flame:Satan wouldn't be scary in heels and a skirt.
Me:Well, have you seen heels nowadays? Those are scary.
But a cross-dresser demon is not very scary, no.
I don't think the world would be very frightened of a transvesite demon.

"Individuality realized is the supreme attainment of the human soul, the master-master’s work of art. Individuality is sacred."

"If you’re extraordinary, you don’t have to be ordinary. But it isn’t easy. You have to work, learn, learn some more, and be the best at what you do—whatever it happens to be. And you have to keep that thick skin, because all the people who sold out and played the game are going to resent you for succeeding on your own terms."

"To be original, or different, is felt to be “dangerous.” "

"When you are content to be simply yourself and don’t compare or compete, everybody will respect you."

"Care about people’s approval and you will be their prisoner."

"Do others, I wondered, “see things as I do? I do not think so, for if they did they would not still be alive.” And, life-threatening though my vision seemed, I would not repudiate it: “Sometimes I think I shall die from being different even as I cling to the difference fiercely.” "

"Strongest minds are often those of whom the noisy world hears last."

"If you don’t control your mind, someone else will."

"Individualism is rather like innocence: There must be something unconscious about it."

"With the pride of the artist, you must blow against the walls of every power that exists the small trumpet of your defiance."

"I am not in this world to live up to other people’s expectations, nor do I feel that the world must live up to mine."

"Every individual has a place to fill in the world, and is important, in some respect, whether he chooses to be so or not."

"He felt…a suspicion—no, a conviction—than he had been abandoned, forgotten, and that no one in the whole world cared or would ever care enough about him to really find out what he was like and what his dreams were. He was an outcast, a creature somehow vastly different from all other people, an object of scorn and derision, an outsider, secretly loathed and ridiculed by everyone who met him, even by those few who professed to love him."

"Searching for the self when I was entirely alone was hazardous. What if I found not so much a great emptiness as a space full of unpleasant contents, a compound of long-hidden truths, closeted, buried, forgotten. When I went looking, I was playing a desperate game of hide-and-seek, fearful of what I might find, most afraid that I would find nothing."

"The longest journey is the journey inward."

"Don’t waste your time thinking about who you ought to be; just be content with who you’re becoming."

"It takes courage to grow up and become who you really are."

"If God had wanted me otherwise, He would have created me otherwise."

"Be who you are and say what you feel, because those who mind don’t matter and those who matter don’t mind."

"Be what you are. This is the first step toward becoming better than you are."

"Isolation and belonging are not absolute, provable states of being. They arise completely out of the nothingness within you; you measure their dimensions against your own firm or shaky sense of who you are."

"Go into yourself and see how deep the place is from which your life flows."

"And if the soul Is to know itself It is into a soul That it must look: The stranger and the enemy, we’ve seen him in the mirror."

"The tragedy is that so many people look for self-confidence and self-respect everywhere except within themselves, and so they fail in their search. "

"All changes, even the most longed for, have their melancholy; for what we leave behind us is a part of ourselves; we must die in one life before we can enter into another."

"Character cannot be developed in ease and quiet. Only through experience of trial and suffering can the soul be strengthened, vision cleared, ambition inspired, and success achieved."

"I write only because there is a voice within me that will not be still."

"It would not be inaccurate to say that I write to bring order into chaos, to share with myself a knowledge that is useful even if it hurts and which would make life more bearable, not only for myself but also for others."

"Any writer worth anything has mastered the art…of solitude."

"You can’t be a proper writer without a touch of madness, can you?"

"If we had to say what writing is, we would define it essentially as an act of courage."

"A man’s goal in everything is to be invisible to others (defense), and there are but two means to this end: absolute reserve and total openness. A writer is the latter. We know all and nothing about him. That is why, after his death, we try so intently (with the same uncontrollable greed as in glancing at someone else’s sheet of paper) to establish just who he was—letters, memoirs, medical records—and have no success. This man who lived so openly, so on display, so in the public eye, turns out to have been the most secretive, the most invisible. He has carried his secret to the grave. For this to be true, writers must be geniuses, and hacks crystal-pure and sincere."

"Fill your paper with the breathings of your heart..."

"The role of a writer is not to say what we all can say, but what we are unable to say."

"The act of putting pen to paper encourages pause for thought, this in turn makes us think more deeply about life, which helps us regain our equilibrium."

"It is necessary to write, if the days are not to slip emptily by. How else, indeed, to clap the net over the butterfly of the moment? For the moment passes, it is forgotten; the mood is gone; life itself is gone..."

"Writing let me escape. ... It let me escape the insistent tug of my family, and its ongoing misery. Writing was like slipping into the ocean, a place where I could move easily, where I could be graceful, and playful, and invisible and visible all at once-a byline, not a body. Sitting in front of the computer, with the screen blank and the cursor blinking, was the best escape I knew. And there was plenty to escape from."

"The pages are still blank, but there is a miraculous feeling of the words being there, written in invisible ink and clamoring to become visible."

"You write to communicate to the hearts and minds of others what’s burning inside you. And we edit to let the fire show through the smoke."

"Find out the reason that commands you to write; see whether it has spread its roots into the very depth of your heart; confess to yourself you would have to die if you were forbidden to write."

"I sometimes need to write things which I cannot completely control but which therefore prove that what is in me is stronger than I am."

"You never know what you will learn till you start writing. Then you discover truths you never knew existed."

"To me, the greatest pleasure of writing is not what it’s about, but the inner music that words make."

"Writing is a voice that calls us from dreams, that peeks out of the corner of our eyes when we think no one is looking, the longing that breaks our hearts even when we think we should be happiest, and to which we cannot give a name. "

"Poetry is just the evidence of life. If your life is burning well, poetry is just the ash. "

"Poetry does not necessarily have to be beautiful to stick in the depths of our memory."

"The courage of the poet is to keep ajar the door that leads into madness."

"Poetry is not penned to the page waiting for us to admire; it is only a lonely thought, caught by tears on fire."

"Life is an illusion only a poet can shatter it poets are the creators of silence, holders of faith and dreamers of reality."

"A man can be himself alone so long as he is alone;…if he does not love solitude, he will not love freedom; for it is only when he is alone that he is really free."

"To have passed through life and never experienced solitude is to never have known oneself. To have never known oneself is to have never known anyone."

"People who take the time to be alone usually have depth, originality, and quiet reserve."

"Solitude gives birth to the original in us, to beauty unfamiliar and perilous—to poetry."

"We are the puzzle pieces who seldom fit with other puzzle pieces. We inhabit singledom as our natural resting state…Secretly, we are romantics, romantics of the highest order. We want a miracle. Out of millions we have to find the one who will understand.
For the quirky alone, there is no patience for dating just for the sake of not being alone. On a fine but by no means transcendent date we dream of going home to watch television. We would prefer to be alone with our own thoughts than with a less than perfect fit. We are almost constitutionally incapable of casual relationships."

"I am not a joiner. Somewhere I once said that people join clubs now for the very reason they once carried them, a need for security. Maybe I’m alone more often than I should be, because I try to find security within myself."

"We need quiet time to examine our lives openly and honestly...spending quiet time alone gives your mind an opportunity to renew itself and create order."

"The things one experiences alone with oneself are very much stronger and purer. "

"Solitude is the great teacher, and to learn its lessons you must pay attention to it."

"Not everyone knows how to be alone with others, how to share solitude. We have to help each other to understand how to be in our solitude, so that we can relate to each other without grabbing on to each other. We can be interdependent but not dependent. Loneliness is rejected despondency. Solitude is shared interdependency."

"Some of the most wonderful people are the ones who don’t fit into boxes."

"For many years, I shut down that place inside myself that needed to rage, cry, ask questions, and basically just express herself."

"For thousands of years women were not the creative forces, not the Da Vincis, not the Mozarts, just the muses. You really didn’t get a lot of lightning rods that were the women. You don’t hear about the great sonatas written by the great female composers. And of course, they were out there somewhere, but there wasn’t a place for acknowledgment. Now the dam is broken. It was pent up for so long and now there’s a deluge. Suddenly women are the creative forces that we wanted to be for thousands of years."

"A really important thing I always want to say to young people is that there’s a huge value in—I don’t want to call it failure—but in things not working out well. How’s that? It makes you...recognize yourself and recognize your weaknesses..."

"...I’ve always been reticent about the concept of “Happily Ever After.” The garden will have weeds and pests that may damage crops; it may even have pestilence to contend with once in a while. But with the right combination of elements, including bees and butterflies, the garden will pollinate and become a garden—not an emotional wasteland but a place of sensuality and balance. So it may need a good beekeeper; all complex gardens do."

" I see the dream and I see the nightmare, and I believe you can’t have the dream without the nightmare."

"The sense of loss is such a tricky one, because we always feel like our worth is tied up into stuff that we have, not that our worth can grow with things we are willing to lose."

"I found a way to dance with sorrow."

"Give the kids tools, so they can go build their own houses; not the blueprint of what the houses should be."

"People are afraid of what they might find if they try to analyze themselves too much, but you have to crawl into the wound to discover what your fears are. Once the bleeding starts, the cleansing can begin."

"People play games when they’ve got you under the microscope and when they don’t understand something I say or an experience I talk about. They jump on it and try and make it look silly or insane."

"I always had high expectations of the “sisterhood,” but women can betray each other horrifically. And that’s worse than a man betraying you. Because women touch places that men cannot find."

"It’s very much about thinking you were loved for who you were, and realizing you weren’t, and realizing maybe you don’t love yourself... You can only be you. A lot of times that’s not enough for some people."

"I don’t hate men. I give equal time in my hate. It’s acts of people that I hate. Whether they be men or women, it’s their behavior that I hate."

"I think I’m a magnet for people who want to be alone with themselves."

"I always believe you have to go to the venom for the antidote."

"The thing most feared in secret always happens."

"You gain strength, courage, and confidence by every experience in which you really stop to look fear in the face. You are able to say to yourself, “I lived through this horror. I can take the next thing that comes along.” You must do the thing you think you cannot do."

"Live bravely in the hurt of light."

"To fear is one thing. To let fear grab you by the tail and swing you around is another."

"Courage is resistance to fear, mastery of fear—not absence of fear."

"There is only one thing that remains to us, that cannot be taken away: to act with courage and dignity and to stick to the ideals that have given meaning to life."

"Without courage, you cannot practice any other virtue. You have to have courage—courage of different kinds: first, intellectual courage, to sort out different values and make up your mind about which is the one which is right for you to follow. You have to have moral courage to stick up to that—no matter what comes in your way, no matter what the obstacle and the opposition is. Opposition comes not only from your enemies but sometimes from your friends, and the latter is much more difficult to face. You have to have physical courage, because very often going along the path of your choice is full of physical hardships."

"Courage doesn’t always roar. Sometimes courage is the quiet voice at the end of the day saying, “I will try again tomorrow.” "

"It takes more courage to suffer than it does to die."

"Anything I’ve ever done that ultimately was worthwhile initially scared me to death."

"I feel that the period will sooner or later arrive when I must abandon life and reason together, in some struggle with the grim phantasm, FEAR."

"The time has come to close your eyes even how vast is the pain for the only fear that confronts you shall always be your own rain."

"Do not fear your enemies. The worse they can do is kill you. Do not fear friends. At worst, they may betray you. Fear those who do not care; they neither kill nor betray, but betrayal and murder exist because of their silent consent."

"You have enemies? Good. That means you’ve stood up for something, sometime in your life."

"The time when you need to do something is when no one else is willing to do it, when people are saying it can’t be done."

"That was the way. When the opportunity was at your hand, you did not dare to seize it. When the opportunity was lost, it became precious."

"It is not impossibilities which fill us with the deepest despair, but possibilities which we have failed to realize."

"The reasonable man adapts himself to the world; the unreasonable one persists in trying to adapt the world to himself. Therefore all progress depends on the unreasonable man."

"I always thought that if I were popular, I must be doing something wrong."

"Fame is a vapor; popularity an accident; the only earthly certainty is oblivion."

"He who does not understand your silence will probably not understand your words."

"Thanks to language, we have a verbal memory that allows us to learn and remember without physically experiencing something. Pure magic."

"Language is the blood of the soul into which thoughts run and out of which they grow."

"Learn to get in touch with the silence within yourself and know that everything in this life has a purpose. There are no mistakes, no coincidences. All events are blessings given to us to learn from."

"Silence—the most perfect expression of scorn."

"I personally think we developed language because of our deep need to complain."

"In her starry shade of dim and solitary loveliness, I learn the language of another world."

"…she’d never known silence could be so cruel a weapon, never known she could inflict such pain just by sitting still and silent. She liked the feeling."

"Loneliness is the clearest of crystal insight into your own soul; it’s the fear of one’s own self that haunts the lonely."

"He felt something else, too, something dark and devastating. Something far more disturbing than anger, far more debilitating than fear, something uglier, like a terrible loneliness, but much worse than loneliness."

"What if this were Hell, this absence of sleep, this poet’s desert, this pain of living, this dying of not dying, this anguish of shadows, this passion over death and light."

"Bottom line is, even if you see them coming, you’re not ready for the big moments. No one asks for their life to change, not really. But it does. So, what are we, helpless? Puppets? Nah. The big moments are gonna come, you can’t help that. It’s what you do afterwards that counts. That’s when you find out who you are."

"In the moment of shock there is little pain; pain began about three a.m. when I began to plan the life I had still somehow to live and to remember memories in order somehow to eliminate them. Happy memories are the worst, and I tried to remember the unhappy."

"…we need hope as surely as we need food and water, love, and friendship. The trick, however, is to remember that hope is a perilous thing, that it’s not a steel and concrete bridge across the void between this moment and a brighter future. Hope is no stronger than tremulous beads of dew strung on a filament of spider web, and it alone can’t long support the terrible weight of an anguished mind and a tortured heart."

"Hope deceives more than cunning can."

"Defiance is beautiful. The defiance of power, especially great or overwhelming power, exalts and glorifies the rebel."

"As our eyes grow accustomed to sight they armor themselves against wonder."

"We invite you on a journey through the inner world of the visionary; those who find themselves compelled to reveal the hidden, the secret, the soul. We cannot explain the alchemy of creation; beauty remains a mystery, even to its maker. It is this mystery that beckons us."

"The most beautiful thing we can experience is the mysterious. It is the source of all true art and sciences. He to whom this emotion is a stranger, who no longer pauses to wonder and stand in rapt awe, is as good as dead."

"…I have the mysterious feeling of seeing for the first time something I have always known."

"The dream that haunts you, the blue-black clouds, the huge, faceless thing that chases you down alleys to a cliff and no way out but leaping…feel yourself on the other side of the clouds, in rose-gold light, feel yourself turn and face the faceless thing and watch it change, feel yourself step off the cliff…"

"We all wear masks, and the time comes when we cannot remove them without removing some of our own skin."

"I’m living but I’m feeling numb. Can see it in my stare. I wear a mask so falsely numb and I don’t know who I am."

"We are what we pretend to be, so we must be careful about what we pretend to be."

"It is the mark of an educated mind to be able to entertain a thought without accepting it."

"Youth, even in its sorrows, has a brilliance of its own."

"All his life he had managed in such ways to disconnect himself from things which he couldn’t escape and which threatened to define him in a way in which he didn’t want to be defined, and go on untouched, untouched by things that should have touched him, hurt him, burned him…And he had said to himself in anguish: “I have to learn to feel.” "

"I had been withdrawing into a retreat of numbness: it is so much safer not to feel, not to let the world touch one. But my honest self revolted at this, hated me for doing this."

"The darkness rolled up again, the darkness that is primeval but not eternal, and yields to its own painful dawn."

"This darkness. What is it but a theatre in which we work our magic; where we can express our desires and our fears, our dreams and our pain. In this dimly lit place, we seek the visions that both inspire and horrify us."

"Her long, pale face…seemed almost drugged, as if a strange mass of thoughts coiled in the darkness within her, and she was never allowed to escape."

"Today I have much to do: I must kill off memory; My soul must turn to stone, and I must learn to live anew."

"I sit beside my lonely fire and pray for wisdom yet: for calmness to remember or courage to forget."

"Quiet people are often found to have profound insights. The shallow water in a brook or river runs fast: the deep water seems calmer."

"I have seen the truth and it makes no sense."

"Sometimes, the truth is harder than the pain inside."

"The world breaks everyone, and afterward many are strong at the broken places."

"An idea that is not dangerous is unworthy of being called an idea at all."

" People think you’re dangerous when you’re chaotic. I feel dangerous now that I’m focused."

"We do not receive wisdom, we must discover it for ourselves, after a journey through the wilderness which no one else can make for us, which no one can spare us, for our wisdom is the point of view from which we come at last to regard the world."

"No one knows what is in the secret heart of another."

"We eat and drink flesh the color of garnets, rubies, wounds. It is bitter just under the skin."

"The one thing you dreaded: letting yourself fall, taking the step into uncertainty, the little step beyond all the securities that existed. And whoever had once surrendered himself, one single time, whoever had entrusted himself to fate was liberated."

"Advice is what we ask for when we already know the answer but wish we didn’t."

"Information is not knowledge, knowledge is not wisdom, wisdom is not truth, truth is not beauty, beauty is not love."

"It’s not that I have nothing to give, but rather that no one wants what I have."

"I cannot retrieve my inner child, for it is dead and buried in my backyard."

"I have a very firm grasp on reality! I can reach out and strangle it anytime!"

"Reality is for people who lack imagination."

"I have lived through yesterday's tomorrows, and don't wish to see anymore of tomorrow's yesterdays."

"She was a kind of guitar to learn forgiveness on, its harmonies and, yes, even its bungled chords."

"Anyone whose goal is 'something higher' must expect some vertigo. What is vertigo? Fear of falling? Then why do we feel it even when the observation tower comes equipped with a sturdy handrail? No, vertigo is something other than the fear of falling. It is the voice of emptiness below us which tempts and lures us, it is the desire to fall, against which, terrified, we defend ourselves."

The thing about longing is this: it is easy to feel equal to longing. It is rare to feel equal to having.

When a writer writes, it's as if she holds the sides of her chest apart, exposes her beating heart. And even though everything wants to heal, to close over and protect the heart, the writer must keep it bare, exposed. And in doing this, all of life is kept back, all the petty demads of the day-to-day. The heart is a river. The act of writing is the moving water that holds the banks apart, keeps the muscle of words flexing so that the reader can be carried along by this movement. To be given space and the chance to leave one's earthly world. Is there any greater freedom than this?

Raley lies on top of me. His body is heavy and insistent. He kisses me and I feel as if I have never breathed before now. That all this time I was only dying. I wrap my arms around him, feel his ribs under his shirt, pull it up and run my hands over his skin, soft as petals. Don't go, I think, as I slide my fingers over each blunt thorn in his spine. Don't go. The moon moves out from behind a cloud and turns his blond hair white in the milky dark, in the thin milky dark. And then the wind stirs and I can smell the roses. I swear it is that, it is the scent of the night roses that makes me say what I feel but never mean to utter. It is the scent of roses, and I swear this has happened before. The roses have made this happen before. They are burning above me. Raley is burning above me. "I love you," I say.

The feeling of him gone from my body is the loneliest I have ever been. And there will never be anything to relieve it. For one moment I was no longer empty. for one moment I was alive. Until I made the mistake of calling it love.

What is longing if not the ghost of memory?

The Vicomte de Valmont wrote to Marquise de Merteuil, on August 9th and stated:

“Didn’t you know that it’s not until after its delights that Love can stop being blind?”

Three days later, she wrote him back and stated:

“Like medicine, love is nothing but the art of giving Nature a helping hand?”

“The temple of love belongs to the one who performs the sacrifices!”

'There must be another life, she thought, sinking back into her chair, exasperated. Not in dreams; but here and now, in this room, with living people...This is too short, too broken. We know nothing, even about ourselves. We're only just beginning, she thought, to understand, here and there.'

There are no harmless, compassionate ways to remake oneself. We murder who we are so we can rebirth ourselves in the images of dreams.

"I didn't know what hate felt like, not the hate that comes after love. It's huge and desperate and it longs to be proved wrong. And every day it's proved right it grows a little more monstrous. If the love was passion, the hate will be obsession. A need to see the once-loved weak and cowed beneath pity. Disgust is close and dignity is far away. The hate is not only for the once loved, it's for yourself too; how could you ever have loved this?"

"And so, from the first, we separated our pleasure. She lay on the rug and I lay at right angles to her so that only our lips might meet. Kissing in this way is the strangest of distractions. The greedy body that clamours for satisfaction is forced to content iteself with a single sensation and, just as the blind hear more acutely and the deaf can feel the grass grow, so the mouth becomes the focus of love and all things pass through it and are re-defined. It is a sweet and precise torture."

"Is this the explanation then when we meet someone we do not know and feel straight away that we have always known them? That their habits will not be a surprise. Perhaps our lives spread around us like a fan and we can only know one life, but by mistake sense others."

"You will fall in love. And suffer."

Perhaps for that very reason, I adored her all the more, because of the eternal human stupidity of pursuing those who hurt us the most.

"Where you used to be, there is a hole in the world, which I find myself constantly walking around in the daytime, and falling in at night. I miss you like hell. "

In the moonless gloom of midnight I
asked her, "Maiden, what is your quest
holding the lamp near your heart? My
house is all dark and lonesome,--lend
me your light." She stopped for a
minute and thought and gazed at my
face in the dark. "I have brought my
light," she said, "to join the carnival of
lamps." I stood and watched her little
lamp uselessly lost among lights.

"To-day we would pass through the scenes of our youth like travellers. We are burnt up by hard facts; like tradesmen we understand distinctions, and like butchers, necessities. We are no longer untroubled - we are indifferent. We might exist there; but should we really live there?
We are forlorn like children, and experienced like old men, we are crude and sorrowful and superficial - I believe we are lost."

All parents damage their children. It cannot be helped. Youth, like pristine glass, absorbs the prints of its handlers. Some parents smudge, others crack, a few shatter childhoods completely into jagged little pieces, beyond repair.

"She's a woman, you're a dude. You're not supposed to understand her. That's not what she's after...She doesn't want you to understand her. She knows that's impossible. She just wants you to understand yourself. Everything else is negotiable."

Out of the blue, beyond any cause you can trace, you'll suddenly realize things are not how you perceived them to be at all. For some reason, you will no longer be the person you believed you once were. You'll detect slow and subtle shifts going on all around you, more importantly shifts in you.

Who has never killed an hour? Not casually or without thought, but carefully: a premeditated murder of minutes. The violence comes from a combination of giving up, not caring, and a resignation that getting past it is all you can hope to accomplish. So you kill the hour. You do not work, you do not read, you do not daydream. If you sleep it is not because you need to sleep. And when at last it is over, there is no evidence: no weapon, no blood, and no body. The only clue might be the shadows beneath your eyes or a terribly thin line near the corner of your mouth indicating something has been suffered, that in the privacy of your life you have lost something and the loss is too empty to share.

There comes a point where you just love someone. Not because they're good, or bad, or anything really. You just love them. It doesn't mean you'll be together forever. It doesn't mean you won't hurt each other. It just means you love them. Sometimes in spite of who they are, and sometimes because of who they are. And you know that they love you, sometimes because of who you are, and sometimes in spite of it.

When love beckons to you, follow him,
Though his ways are hard and steep.
And when his wings enfold you yield to him,
Though the sword hidden among his pinions may wound you.
And when he speaks to you believe in him,
Though his voice may shatter your dreams as the north wind lays waste the garden. For even as love crowns you so shall he crucify you.
Bloody Demise of a Fallen Dream
15 May 2006 @ 05:19 pm
"Better," I could not help saying, "to have left her a natural heart, even to be bruised or broken."

"And the moment you care that much, a man has you. He owns a little piece of your soul, and he can beat you to death with it. Don't believe me? Then you've never been in love and had it go to hell. Lucky you."

"Why not? Mark these words: never be sure of the woman you love, for there are more snares in her nature than you can ever imagine. Women are neither as good as their admirers maintain nor as bad as their detractors would have them be; their character is merely lack of character. The best of women can momentarily flounder in the mud, just as the worst can unexpectedly rise to great heights of generosity, to the confusion of those who vilify her. Every woman, good or bad, is capable at any moment of the most diabolical thoughts, actions or emotions, as well as the most divine; the purest as well as the most sordid. In spite of all the advances of civilization, woman has remained as she was the day Nature's hand shaped her. She is like a wild animal, faithful or faithless, kindly or cruel, depending on the impulse that rules her. A profound and serious culture is needed to produce moral character. Man, even when he is selfish or wicked, lives by principles; woman only obeys her feelings. Never forget this, and never be sure of the woman you love."

"All books are valuable. Some are dangerous."
"Books of spells, you mean?"
Seregil grinned. "Those, too, but I was thinking more of ideas. Those can be far more dangerous than any magic."

I am the germ of a new insanity, a freak dressed in intelligent language, a sob that is buried like a splinter in the quick of the soul. I am dancing the very sane and lovely dance of the angelic gorilla. These are my brothers and sisters who are insane and unangelic. We are dancing in the hollow of the cup of nothingness. We are of one flesh, but we are separated like stars.

"One had no right to play with other people's lives. One should not interfere with their emotions. A word, a look, a smaile, a frown, did something to another human being, waking response or aversion, and a web was woven which had no beginning and no end, spreading outward and inward too, merging, entangling, so that the struggle of one depended on the stuggling of the other."

I beg you...to have patience with everything unresolved in your heart and to try to love the questions themselves as if they were locked rooms or books written in a very foreign language. Don't search for the answers, which could not be given to you now, because you would not be able to live with them. And the point is, to live everything. Live the questions now. Perhaps then, someday far in the future, you will gradually, without even noticing it, live your way into the answer...

She was sad with an obscure sadness of which she had not the secret herself. There was in her whole person the stupor of a life ended but never commenced.

"Your heart is a great river after a long spell of rain, spilling over its banks. All signposts that once stood on the ground are gone, inundated and carried away by that rush of water. And still the rain beats down on the surface of the river. Every time you see a flood like that on the news you tell yourself: That's it. That's my heart."

"You have a very peculiar expression on your face," he commented drowsily.

"I was just thinking."

"About what?"

"About how we know what's real. How we wake out of a timeless place and recognize time. How you know me here, now, even when nothing or anyone else in this place is familiar. I might have been wandering through your dream, but you knew immediately which of me will bring you paper."

He was silent for so long, still clasping her wrist, that she thought he must have fallen asleep without knowing it. He said finally, "Say that again."

"I can't," she answered helplessly. "It was just a thought. I gave it to you."

"There are as many worlds as there are possibilities. I toss a coin. It comes down heads. But in another world, it comes down tails. Every time that a choice is made, or a chance is missed, or a fork in a road is taken... a world is born for each of the other things that might have happened. And there, they do."

Had I known that the heart
breaks slowly, dismantling itself
into unrecognizable plots of

Had I known the heart would leak,
slobbering its sap, with a vulgar
visibility, into the dressed-up
dining rooms of strangers,

Had I known that solitude could
stifle the breath, loosen the joint,
and force the tongue against the

Had I known that loneliness could
keloid, winding itself around the
body in an ominous and beautiful

Had I known, yet I would have loved
you, your brash and insolent beauty,
your heavy comedic face
and knowledge of sweet

But from a distance.
I would have left you whole and wholly
for the delectation of those who
wanted more and cared less.
–Maya Angelo, “Prescience”

They amputated
your thighs from my hips.
As far as I’m concerned, they’re always
doctors. All of them.
They dismantled us
from each other. As far as I’m concerned,
they’re engineers.
A pity. We were such a good and loving
invention: an airplane made of a man and a woman,
wings and all:
we even got off
the ground a little.
We even flew.
–Yehuda Amichai, “A Pity. We Were Such a Good Invention”

Since you walked out on me
I’m getting lovelier by the hour.
I glow like a corpse in the dark.
No one sees how round and sharp
my eyes have grown
how my carcass looks like a glass urn,
how I hold up things in the rags of my hands,
the way I can stand through crippled by lust.
No, there’s just your cruelty circling
my head like a bright rotting halo.
–Nina Cassian, “Lady of Miracles”

I’m leaving.
You didn’t make me suffer
so you needn’t expect
my hatred.
That would be too splendid
and important a gift.
You’re not worth anything
as precious
as a shred of living flesh.
I’ve killed
your presence within me,
I’m cleansed.
I’m dancing a festive dance of murder.
–Anna Swir, “Dance of Murder”

The end was quick and bitter.
Slow and sweet was the time between us,
slow and sweet were the nights
when my hands did not touch one another
in despair
but with the love of your body
which came between them.
And when I entered into you
it seemed then that great happiness
could be measured with the precision
of sharp pain. Quick and bitter.
Slow and sweet were the nights.
Now is as bitter and grinding as sand—
“Let’s be sensible” and similar curses.
And as we stray further from love
we multiply the words,
words and sentences long and orderly.
Had we remained together
we could have become a silence.
–Yehuda Amichai, “Quick and Bitter”

What is the difference between love and obsession? Didn’t both make you stay up all night, wandering the streets, a victim of your own imagination, your own heartbeat? Didn’t you fall into both, headfirst into quicksand? Wasn’t every man in love a fool and every woman a slave?
Love was like rain: it turned into ice, or it disappeared. Now you saw it, now you couldn’t find it no matter how hard you might search. Love evaporated; obsession was realer; it hurt, like a pin in your bottom, a stone in your shoe. It didn’t go away in the blink of an eye. A morning phone call filled with regret. A letter that said, Dear you, good-bye from me. Obsession tasted like something familiar. Something you’d known your whole life. It settled and lurked; it stayed with you. –Alice Hoffman, The Ice Queen

Relationships are like glass. Sometimes it’s better to leave them broken than try to hurt yourself putting it back together.

Letting go, it’s so hard
The way it’s hurting now
To get this love untied
So tough to stay with this thing
’cos if I follow through
I face what I denied
I’ll get those hooks out of me
And I’ll take out the hooks that I sunk deep in your side
Kill that fear of emptiness, that loneliness I hide.

Nothing hurts worse than when the one you love doesn’t choose you.

I am tired, Beloved,
of chafing my heart against
the want of you...

Love hurts when you break up with someone. It hurts even more when someone breaks up with you but it hurts the most when the person you love has no idea about how you feel.

Ask me why I keep on loving you when it’s clear that you don’t feel the same way for me... the problem is that as much as I can’t force you to love me, I can’t force myself to stop loving you.

Anxiety is love’s greatest killer. It makes one feel as you might when a drowning person holds on to you. You want to save him, but you know he will strangle you in his panic.

I’m not sure
why we cannot shake
the old loves
from our minds.
It must be that
we build on memory
and make them more
than what they were.
And is the manufacture
just a safe device
for closing up the wall?

You’re going to leave me, aren’t you? …you’ve had enough of me, haven’t you? You’re probably so tired of all this crying and all these moods, and I’ve got to tell you, so am I. So am I. Sometimes it seems like my mind has a mind of its own, like I just get hysterical, like it’s something I can’t control at all. And I don’t know what to do, and I feel so sorry for you because you don’t know what to do either. And I’m sure you’re going to leave me now.

…and now my heart melts like wax
embraced by flame.
Oh, I know, I know. She is dark.
And so’s the coal before the spark
that makes it burn like roses.

Turn your wounds into wisdom.

To lie with you under a ceiling bright with shifting water shadows—that’s good. To drowse in flower-scented darkness—that’s good. But best of all is rain—drumming, roaring, gushing from the guttering—and we two warm and dry and safe together, in each other’s arms.

Nothing is more practical than…falling in love in an quite absolute, final way. What you are in love with, what seizes your imagination, will affect everything. It will decide what you will do with your evenings, how you spend your weekends, what you read, who you know, what breaks your heart, and what amazes you with joy and gratitude. Fall in love, stay in love, and it will decide everything.

And if I can’t speak about my love—
if I don’t talk about your hair, your lips, your eyes,
still your face that I keep within my heart,
the sound of your voice that I keep within my mind,
the days of September rising in my dreams,
give shape and colour to my words, my sentences,
whatever theme I touch, whatever thought I utter.

I do believe that fate can put people together who are meant to be together. I do think there’s destiny in your life.

A meeting between two people who complete each other, who are made for each other, borders already, in my opinion, on a miracle.

I let you sleep because I love to watch you
all disheveled and unwound
dressed up in your undress like a careless animal
your hair uncovered
unmanned by no one but me.
Forgive me if I love you while you sleep.
I forgive you for not knowing.

Sensual pleasure passes and vanishes in the twinkling of an eye, but the friendship between us, the mutual confidence, the delights of the heart, the enchantment of the soul, these things do not perish and can never be destroyed. I shall love you until I die.

Our love is like the misty rain that falls softly, but floods the river.

Your love is comfort in sadness, quietness in tumult, rest in weariness, hope in despair.

And this eternal longing
can turn a heart to dust.

I think love is like a prayer…something you do even though you don’t have proof it will work.

There is no disguise which can hide love for long where it exists, or simulate it where it does not.

I love you not only for what you are, but for what I am when I am with you. I love you not only for what you have made of yourself, but for you are making of me. I love you for the part of me that you bring out.

Well, what is a relationship? It’s about two people having tremendous weaknesses and vulnerabilities, like we all do, and one person being able to strengthen the other in their areas of vulnerability. And vice versa. You need each other. You bolster each other.

"But love is much like a dam: if you allow a tiny crack to form through which only a trickle of water can pass, that trickle will quickly bring down the whole structure, and soon no one will be able to control the force of the current. For when these walls come down, then love takes over, and it no longer matters what is possible or impossible; it doesn't even matter whether we can keep the loved one at our side. To love is to lose control."

I have noticed that if you look carefully at people's eyes the first five seconds they look at you, the truth of their feelings will shine through for just an instant before it flickers away.

People, in general, would rather die than forgive. It's that hard. If God said in plain language, 'I'm giving you a choice, forgive or die,' a lot of people would go ahead and order their coffin.

Love is a temporary madness. It erupts like an earthquake and then subsides. And when it subsides you have to make a decision. You have to work out whether your roots have become so entwined together that it is inconceivable that you should ever part. Because that is what love is.

Love is not breathless; it is not excitement; it is not the promulgation of promises of eternal passion. That is just being ‘in love ‘which any of us can convince ourselves we are.

Love itself is what is left over when being in love has burned away, and this is both an art and a fortunate accident. Your mother and I had it, we had roots that grew towards each other underground, and when all the pretty blossoms had fallen from our branches were found that we were one tree and not two.

When the heart speaks, the mind finds it indecent to object.

Do you wrestle with dreams?
Do you contend with shadows?
Do you move in a kind of sleep?
Time has slipped away.
Your life is stolen.
You tarried with trifles.
Victim of your folly.

"She felt very young; at the same time unspeakably aged. She sliced like a knife through everything; at the same time was outside, looking on... far out to sea and alone; she always had the feeling that it was very, very dangerous to live even one day."

There were days when she was very happy without knowing why. She was happy to be alive and breathing, when her whole being seemed to be one with the sunlight, the color, the odors, the luxuriant warmth of some perfect Southern day. She liked then to wander alone into strange and unfamiliar places. She discovered many a sunny, sleepy corner, fashioned to dream in. And she found it good to dream and be alone and unmolested.
There were days when she was unhappy, she did not know why- when it did not seem worthwhile to be glad or sorry, to be alive or dead, when life appeared to her like a grotesque pandemonium and humanity like worms struggling blindly toward inevitable annihilation. She could not work on such a day, nor weave fancies to stir her pulses and warm her blood.

'How could you believe me - when I can't believe myself? I've become such a liar. I never lied about anything once upon a time. Now I have to lie, especially to myself. But how can you understand, when I don't myself. I've never understood anything about it, except that one day long ago I found I could no longer call my soul my own.'

Pain has an element of blank;
It cannot recollect
When it began, or if there were
A day when it was not.
It has no future but itself,
Its infinite realms contain
Its past, enlightened to perceive
New periods of pain.

I am no doubt not the only one who writes in order to have no face.

It is your turn now,
you waited, you were patient.
The time has come,
for us to polish you.
We will transform your inner pearl
into a house of fire.
You're a gold mine.
Did you know that,
hidden in the dirt of the earth?
It is your turn now,
to be placed in fire.
Let us cremate your impurities.

"All I wanted was for you to be yourself. And I wondered if it was too late, if seven years in New York had been just enough for you to lose that, like you were trying to lose your southern accent. It aumused me the way your tongue and lips were determined to clip along and then your accent would find you in the spaces between two words -- "talking about", "graduating at". In spite of yourself, the music would squeeze through at the ending of those verbs to tilt the following vowels up just a hald a key. Thats why I wanted you to call me George. There isnt a southerner alive who could bring that name in under two syllables. And for those brief seconds it allowed me to imagine you as you must have been: softer, slower-- open. It conjured up images of jasmine scented nights, warm biscuits and honey being brought to me on flowered china plates as you sat at my feet and rubbed your cheek against my knee. Go ahead and laugh, you have a perfect right. . . But it was a fact that when you said my name, you became yourself."

The greatest lie ever told about love is that it sets you free.

"They leave things behind sometimes, the guests. A bottle of scent. A crumpled handkerchief. A pearl button that fell off a dress and rolled under a bed. And sometimes they leave other sorts of things. Things you can't see. A sigh trapped in a corner. Memories tangled in the curtains. A sob fluttering against the windowpane like a bird that flew in and can't get back out. I can feel these things. They dart and crouch and whisper."

Listen, are we helpless? Are we doomed to do it again and again and again? Have we no choice but to play the Phoenix in an unending sequence of rise and fall? Assyria, Babylon, Egypt, Greece, Carthage, Rome, the Empires of Charlemagne and the Turk: Ground to dust and plowed with salt. Spain, France, Britain, America-burned into the oblivion of the centuries. And again and again and again.
Are we doomed to it, Lord, chained to the pendulum of our own mad clockwork, helpless to halt its swing?

The pale figures pulsed faintly; she could imagine that they were nothing more than afterimages, like the glow left by a bright light in your eyes, after the lights go out.
"It doth not hurt," whispered one faint voice.
"She will take your life and all you are and all you care'st for, and she will leave you with nothing but mist and fog. She'll take your joy. And one day you'll awake and your heart and soul will have gone. A husk you'll be, a wisp you'll be, and a thing no more than a dream on waking or a memory of something forgotten."
"Hollow," whispered the third voice. "Hollow, hollow, hollow, hollow, hollow."

People talk about nightfall, or night falling, or dusk falling, and it's never seemed right to me. Perhaps they once meant befalling. As in night befalls. As in night happens. Perhaps they, whoever they were, thought of a falling sun. That might be it, except that that ought to give us dayfall. Day fell on Rupert the Bear. And we know, if we've ever read a book, that day doesn't fall or rise. It breaks. In books, day breaks, and night falls.
In life, night rises from the ground. The day hangs on for as long as it can, bright and eager, absolutely and positively the last guest to leave the party, while the ground darkens, oozing night around your ankles, swallowing for ever that dropped contact lens, making you miss that low catch in the play on the last ball of the last over.

He remembered that she was pretty, and, more, that she had a special grace in the intimacy of life. She had the secret of individuality which excites - and escapes.

"I want--I want somehow to get away with you into a world where words like that--categories like that-- won't exist. Where we shall be simply two human beings who love each other, who are the whole of life to each other; and nothing else on earth will matter."