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Richard Yates Quotes (20 Quotes)


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  • Intelligent, thinking people could take things like this in their stride, just as they took the larger absurdities of deadly dull jobs in the city and deadly dull homes in the suburbs. Economic circumstances might force you to live in this environment, but the important thing was to keep from being contaminated. The important thing, always, was to remember who you were.
    (Richard Yates, "Revolutionary Road")

  • No one forgets the truth; they just get better at lying.
    (Richard Yates, "Revolutionary Road")

  • Our ability to measure and apportion time affords an almost endless source of comfort.
    (Richard Yates, "Revolutionary Road")

  • People did change, and a change could be a bloom as well as a withering...
    (Richard Yates, "Revolutionary Road")

  • She cried because she'd had such high, high hopes about the Wheelers tonight and now she was terribly, terribly, terribly disappointed. She cried because she was fifty six years old and her feet were ugly and swollen and horrible; she cried because none of the girls had liked her at school and none of the boys had liked her later; she cried because Howard Givings was the only man who'd ever asked her to marry him, and because she'd done it, and because her only child was insane.
    (Richard Yates, "Revolutionary Road")


  • She just happened to feel like it. Wasn't that after all, the only reason there was? Had she ever had a less selfish, more complicated reason for doing anything in her life?
    (Richard Yates, "Revolutionary Road")

  • A man could rant and smash and grapple with the State Police, and still the sprinklers whirled at dusk on every lawn and the television droned in every living room.
    (Richard Yates, "Revolutionary Road")

  • The place had filled him with a sense of wisdom hovering just out of reach, of unspeakable grace prepared and waiting just around the corner, but he'd walked himself weak down its endless blue streets and all the people who knew how to live had kept their tantalizing secret to themselves.
    (Richard Yates, "Revolutionary Road")

  • And they fell asleep like children.
    (Richard Yates, "Revolutionary Road")

  • The Revolutionary Hill Estates had not been designed to accommodate a tragedy. Even at night, as if on purpose, the development held no looming shadows and no gaunt silhouettes. It was invincibly cheerful, a toyland of white and pastel houses whose bright, uncurtained windows winked blandly through a dappling of green and yellow leaves … A man running down these streets in desperate grief was indecently out of place.
    (Richard Yates, "Revolutionary Road")

  • Are artists and writers the only people entitled to lives of their own?
    (Richard Yates, "Revolutionary Road")

  • They could lie drowsing now under the sound of kindly voices in the living room, a sound whose intricately rhythmic rise and fall would slowly turn into the shape of their dreams. And if they came awake later to turn over and reach with their toes for new cool places in the sheets, they knew the sound would still be there-one voice very deep and the other soft and pretty, talking and talking, as substantial and soothing as a blue range of mountains seen from far away.
    (Richard Yates, "Revolutionary Road")

  • Being alone has nothing to do with how many people are around.
    (Richard Yates, "Revolutionary Road")

  • You're painfully alive in a drugged and dying culture.
    (Richard Yates, "Revolutionary Road")

  • Hard work, is the best medicine yet devised for all the ills of man- and of woman.
    (Richard Yates, "Revolutionary Road")


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