I wonder if ever again Americans can have that experience of returning to a home place so intimately known, profoundly felt, deeply loved, and absolutely submitted to? It is not quite true that you can't go home again. I have done it, coming back here. But it gets less likely. We have had too many divorces, we have consumed too much transportation, we have lived too shallowly in too many places.
He thought that it was loneliness which he was trying to escape and not himself. But the street ran on: catlike, one place was the same as another to him. But in none of them could he be quiet. But the street ran on in its moods and phases, always empty: he might have seen himself as in numberless avatars, in silence, doomed with motion, driven by the courage of flagged and spurred despair; by the despair of courage whose opportunities had to be flagged and spurred.
Vanity Fair is a very vain, wicked, foolish place, full of all sorts of humbugs and falsenesses and pretensions.
Janie looked down on him and felt a self-crushing love. So her soul crawled out from its hiding place.
Poor slob without a name. It's a little inconvenient, his not having a name. But I haven't the right to give him one: he'll have to wait until he belongs to somebody. We just sort of took up by the river one day, we don't belong to each other: he's an independent, and so am I. I don't want to own anything until I know I've found the place where me and things belong together.
But if there is no cosmic Plan? What a mockery, to live in exile when no one sent you there. Exile from a place, moreover, that does not exist.
Now they came back to him, on this night he was seventeen years old. All the years and places of his brief broken life came within mind's reach and made a whole again. He knew once more, at last, after this long, bitter, waisted time, who he was and where he was. But where he must go in the years to come, that he could not see; and he feared to see it.
There was something lacking - in him, he thought, not in the place. He was not up to it. He was not strong enough to take what was so generously offered. He felt himself dry and arid, like a desert plant, in this beautiful oasis. Life on Anarres had sealed him, closed off his soul; the waters of life welled all around him, and yet he could not drink.
For a few minutes we kiss, deep in the chasm, with the roar of water all around us. And we rise, hand in hand, I realize that if we had both chosen differently, we might have ended up doing the same thing, in a safer place, in gray clothes instead of black ones.
Valuing knowledge above all else results in a lust for power, and that leads men into dark and empty places.
Am I not as much a doctor as they? I too have my patients; in the first place, theirs, whom they call sick; and then my own, whom I call unfortunate.
You were given a sharp, acute, uncomfortable grain..; yet in absence, in the most unlikely places, it would flower out, open, shed its scent, let you touch, taste, look about you, get the whole feel of it and understanding, after years of lying lost.
The brown paper bag is the only thing civilized man has produced that does not seem out of place in nature.
Some things you forget. Other things you never do. But it's not. Places, places are still there. If a house burns down, it's gone, but the place--the picture of it--stays, and not just in my remory, but out there, in the world. What I remember is a picture floating around out there outside my head. I mean, even if I don't think if, even if I die, the picture of what I did, or knew, or saw is still out there. Right in the place where it happened.
There is a loneliness that can be rocked. Arms crossed, knees drawn up, holding, holding on, this motion, unlike a ship's, smooths and contains the rocker. It's an inside kind--wrapped tight like skin. Then there is the loneliness that roams. No rocking can hold it down. It is alive. On its own. A dry and spreading thing that makes the sound of one's own feet going seem to come from a far-off place.
They hooted and laughed all the way back to the car, teasing Milkman, egging him on to tell more about how scared he was. And he told them. Laughing too, hard, loud, and long. Really laughing, and he found himself exhilarated by simply walking the earth. Walking it like he belonged on it; like his legs were stalks, tree trunks, a part of his body that extended down down down into the rock and soil, and were comfortable there--on the earth and on the place where he walked. And he did not limp.
He saw things in a way that others did not, so that a city I had lived in all my life seemed a different place, so that a woman became beautiful with the light on her face.
Good luck and believe me, dearest Doc - it's better to look at the sky than live there. Such an empty place; so vague. Just a country where the thunder goes and things disappear.
I pull an arrow, whip the notch into place, and am about to let it fly when I'm stopped by the sight of Finnick kissing Peeta. And it's so bizarre, even for Finnick.
The woods always look different at night...as if the daytime trees and flowers and stones had gone to bed and sent slightly more ominous versions of themselves to take their places.
It was like the first time i saw a cadaver. For weeks afterward the cadavers head, or what was left of it - floated up behind my eggs and bacon at breakfast and in the face of Buddy Willard, who was responsible for my seeing it in the first place, and pretty soon I felt as though I were carrying that cadavers head around with me on a string, like some black, noseless balloon stinking of vinegar.
She hardly ever thought of him. He had worn a place for himself in some corner of her heart, as a sea shell, always boring against the rock, might do. The making of the place had been her pain. But now the shell was safely in the rock. It was lodged, and ground no longer.
Well, laddie, if you've let an old buzzard like me hurt you confidence, you couldn't have had much in the first place.
You get attached to places, you know. Like people, I suppose.
Time is the longest distance between two places.
You did what you were told or you didn't get paid, and if things went wrong it wasn't your problem. It was the fault of whatever idiot has accepted this message for sending in the first place. No one cared about you, and everyone at headquarters was an idiot. It wasn't your fault, no one listened to you. Headquarters had even started an Employee of the Month scheme to show how much they cared. That was how much they didn't care.
He'd always known that the world was an interesting place, and his imagination had peopled it with pirates and bandits and spies and astronauts and similar. But he'd also had a nagging suspicion that, when you seriously got right down to it, they were all just things in books and didn't properly exist anymore.
I collect church collapses, recreationally. Did you see the recent one in Sicily? Marvelous! The facade fell on sixty-five grandmothers at a special mass. Was that evil? If so, who did it? If he's up there, he just loves it, Officer Starling. Typhoid and swans - it all comes from the same place.
I mourn my old life here. We barely scraped by, but I knew where I fit in, I knew what my place was in the tightly interwoven fabric that was our life. I wish I could go back to it because, in retrospect, it seems so secure compared to now, when I am so rich and famous and so hated by the authorities in the capitol.
I wonder what it will be like when I leave this place.