"Because, once alone, it is impossible to believe that one could ever have been otherwise. Loneliness is an absolute discovery."
5 months, 1 week ago
"...as pictures pin the maps of our lives, music marks the calendar."
"'It's simple, really. We decide to survive together or mourn seperately,' and this seemed to resemble, as much as anything, the makings of a marriage if not love."
"Did his country lead him to the music or did the music lead him to his country?"
"As the twentieth century was about politics, which is to say survival, the twenty-first century is about God, which is to say oblivion, a subject his country is profoundly unprepared to contemplate."
"The moment of dying is banal unless you've been dying long enough to watch death approach and give it meaning; the moment of loss is banal unless you've been losing long enough to feel what slips away and to calibrate its retreat."
5 months, 2 weeks ago
"This then, I thought, as I looked round about me, is the representation of history. It requires a falsification of perspective. We, the survivors, see everything from above, see everything at once, and still we do not know how it was."
"Memories lie slumbering within us for months and years, quietly proliferating, until they are woken by some trifle and in some strange way blind us to life."
6 months ago
"I don't think writers are sacred, but words are. They deserve respect. If you get the right ones in the right order, you can nudge the world a little or make a poem which children will speak for you when you're dead."
6 months, 2 weeks ago
"Loneliness is the human condition. Cultivate it. The way it tunnels into you allows your soul room to grow. Never expect to outgrow loneliness. Never hope to find people who will understand you, someone to fill that space. An intelligent, sensitive person is the exception, the very great exception. 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."
6 months, 2 weeks ago
"Being happy was a small awareness, the sum of small awarenesses, day by day, minute by minute, and you knew it now, in the hair and skin as much as in the heart."
"'A fact is innocent until someone wants it. Then it becomes intelligence.'"
"War has a conscience or it is ordinary murder."
6 months, 3 weeks ago
"'The pain that can't forget,' he says, 'must find a way to rain forgiveness on the heart until there grows a wisdom and grace as close to God's as we can manage."
"'If it's true that the promise of this country can't be kept until white begs the forgiveness of black, it's as true that the promise can't be kept until the black man decides whether to extend that forgiveness--and slavery's child is under no obligation to do that.'"
"'I don't know how much time I have,' he says, 'to become the person that I hope I am.'"
7 months, 3 weeks ago
"'I never realized how easily people could be trained to accept slavery.'"
8 months ago