The adolescents of my generation, greedy for life, forgot in body and soul about their hopes for the future until reality taught them that tomorrow was not what they had dreamed, and they discovered nostalgia.
Gabriel Garcia Márquez, Memories of My Melancholy Whores
Yes, he thought, Between grief and nothing I will take grief.
The Wild Palms by William Faulkner
Her life was a slow realization that the world was not for her and that for whatever reason she would never be happy and honest at the same time. She felt as if she were brimming always producing and hoarding more love inside her. But there was no release. Table ivory elephant charm rainbow onion hairdo violence melodrama honey… None of it moved her. She addressed the world honestly searching for something deserving of the volumes of love she knew she had within her but to each she would have to say, I don’t love you.
Jonathan Safran Foer, Everything Is Illuminated
If it weren’t for her, there would never have been an empty space, or the need to fill it.
Nicole Krauss, The History of Love
But nothing disturbs the feeling of specialness like the presence of other human beings feeling identically special.
Freedom, Jonathan Franzen
What about you? Are you happiest and saddest right now that you’ve ever been?” “Of course I am.” “Why?” “Because nothing makes me happier and nothing makes me sadder than you.
The History of Love, Nicole Krauss
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 exit.
Jonathan Safran Foer, Everything is Illuminated
When you’ve lived as long as I you’ll see that every human being has his shell and that you must take the shell into account. By the shell I mean the whole envelope of circumstances. There’s no such thing as an isolated man or woman; we’re each of us made up of some cluster of appurtenances. What shall we call our ‘self’? Where does it begin? where does it end? It overflows into everything that belongs to us — and then it flows back again. I know a large part of myself is in the clothes I choose to wear. I’ve a great respect for things! One’s self — for other people — is one’s expression of one’s self; and one’s house, one’s furniture, one’s garments, the books one reads, the company one keeps — these things are all expressive.
Portrait of a Lady, Henry James
I cannot dream up anything more extraordinary than reality itself.
Gabriel García Márquez
I find it harder and harder every day to live up to my blue china.