She had an inside and an outside now and suddenly she knew how not to mix them.
Ah done lived Grandma's way, now Ah means tuh live mine.
The spirit of the marriage left the bedroom and took to living in the parlor.
Janie saw her life like a great tree in leaf with the things suffered, things enjoyed, things done and undone. Dawn and doom was in the branches
She had waited all her life for something, and it had killed her when it found her.
All gods who receive homage are cruel. All gods dispense suffering without reason. Otherwise they would not be worshipped. Through indiscriminate suffering men know fear and fear is the most divine emotion. It is the stones for altars and the beginning of wisdom. Half gods are worshipped in wine and flowers. Real gods require blood.
There is a basin in the mind where words float around on thought and thought on sound and sight. Then there is a depth of thought untouched by words, and deeper still a gulf of formless feelings untouched by thought.
Long before the year was up, Janie noticed that her husband had stopped talkin to he rin rhymes.
She tore off the kerchief from her head and let down her plentiful hair. The weight, the length, the glory was all there. She took careful stock of herself, then combed her hair and tied it back up again.
And I can't die easy thinking maybe the menfolks white or black is making a spit cup out of you. Have some sympathy for me. Put me down easy, Janie, I'm a cracked plate.
There was already something dead about him. He didn't rear back in his knees any longer. He squatted over his ankles when he walked. That stillness at the back of his neck. His prosperous-looking belly…sagged like a load suspended from his loins.
Maybe if she had known some other way to try, she might have made his face different. But what the other way could be, she had no idea.
She was stretched on her back beneath the pear tree soaking in the alto chant of the visiting bees, the gold of the sun and the panting breath of the breeze when the inaudible voice of it all came to her. She saw a dust-bearing bee sink into the sanctum of a bloom; the thousand sister-calyxes arch to meet the love embrace and the ecstatic shiver of the tree from root to tiniest branch creaming in every blossom and frothing with delight.
For the first time she could see a man's head naked of its skull. Saw the cunning thoughts race in and out through the caves and promontories of his mind long before they darted through the tunnel of his mouth.
They bowed down to him rather, because he was all of these things, and then again he was all of these things because the town bowed down.
Nanny's words made Janie's kiss across the gatepost seem like a manure pile after a rain
She's got those big black eyes with plenty shiny white in them that makes them shine like brand new money and she knows what God gave women eyelashes for, too. Her hair is not what you might call straight. It's negro hair, but it's got a kind of white flavor. Like the piece of string out of a ham. It's not ham at all, but it's been around ham and got the flavor.
From barren brown stems to glistening leaf-buds; from the leaf-buds to snowy virginity of bloom…It was like a flute song forgotten in another existence and remembered again. What? How? Why? This singing she heard that had nothing to do with her ears. The rose of the world was breathing out smell. It followed her through all her waking moments and caressed her in her sleep.
They plan and they fix and they do, and then some kitchen-dwelling fiend slips a scorchy, soggy, tasteless mess into their pots and pans…So when the bread didn't rise, and the fish wasn't quite done at the bone, and the rice was scorched, he slapped Janie until she had a ringing sound in her ears and told her about her brains before he stalked on back to the store.
No hour is ever eternity, but it has its right to weep.
So Janie waited a bloom time, and a green time and an orange time.
Well, she thought, that big old dawg with the hatred in his eyes had killed her after all.
Of course he wasn't dead. He could never be dead until she herself had finished feeling and thinking. The kiss of his memory made pictures of love and light against the wall. Here was peace. She pulled in her horizon like a great fish-net. Pulled it from around the waist of the world and draped it over her shoulder. So much of life in its meshes! She called in her soul to come and see.
So she sat on the porch and watched the moon rise. Soon its amber fluid was drenching the earth, and quenching the thirst of the day.
He was the average mortal. It troubled him to get used to the world one way and then suddenly have it turn different.
When God had made The Man, he made him out of stuff that sung all the time and glittered all over. Some angels got jealous and chopped him into millions of pieces, but still he glittered and hummed. So they beat him down to nothing but sparks but each little spark had a shine and a song. So they covered each one over with mud. And the lonesomeness in the sparks make them hunt for one another.
Oh to be a pear tree - any tree in bloom! With kissing bees singing of the beginning of the world!
Somebody got to think for women and chillun and cows. I god, they sho don't think none theirselves… When Ah see one thing Ah understands ten. You see ten things and don't understand one.
Her old thoughts were going to come in handy now, but new words would have to be made and said to fit them.
More Zora Neale Hurston Quotations (Based on Topics)
Love - World - People - God - Mind - Thought & Thinking - Nature - Life - Time - Man - Anger - Sleep - Eternity - Hair - Singing - Fear - Place - Death & Dying - Woman - View All Zora Neale Hurston Quotations
More Zora Neale Hurston Quotations (By Book Titles)
- Their Eyes Were Watching God
William Shakespeare - Philippe Quinault - Lady Gregory - John Fletcher - Jean Racine - Henry Taylor - Hannah Cowley - George S. Kaufman - George Colman - Alexandre Dumas