She did not have time to wonder about his being late. He died bent over the sidewalk sign that stood out in front of the hardware store… He had not even had time to get into the store…
I can’t play bridge. I don’t play tennis. All those things that people learn, and I admire, there hasn’t seemed time for. But what there is time for is looking out the window.
Few people, very few, have a treasure, and if you do you must hang on to it. You must not let yourself be waylaid and have it taken from you.
To be a femme fatale you don’t have to be slinky and sensuous and disastrously beautiful, you just have to have the will to disturb.
Why is there always this twitchiness, when you introduce a man to a woman friend, about whether the man will be bored or put off?
I was happy in the library. Walls of printed pages, evidence of so many created worlds–this was a comfort to me.
It had a sort of a head on it, like a mushroom, and its color was reddish purple. It looked blunt and stupid, compared, say, to fingers and toes with their intelligent expressiveness, or even to an elbow or a knee.
You would think as you get older your mind would fill up with what they call the spiritual side of things, but mine just seems to get more and more practical, trying to get something settled.
It was comparable to getting sick from bad ventilation
We say of some things that they can’t be forgiven, or that we will never forgive ourselves. But we do–we do it all the time.
Sometimes I get the start of a story from a memory, an anecdote, but that gets lost and is usually unrecognizable in the final s
Moments of kindness and reconciliation are worth having, even if the parting has to come sooner or later.
This is the way you look at the poorest details of the world resurfaced, after you’ve been driving for a long time — you feel their singleness and precise location and the forlorn coincidence of you being there to see them.
And whatever troubled him and showed in his face might have been the same old trouble – the problem of occupying space in the world and having a name people could call you by, being somebody they thought they could know.
For what was living with a man if it wasn’t living inside his insanity?
Anecdotes don’t make good stories. Dig down so far that what finally comes out is not even what you thought it was about.
I felt in him what women feel in men, something so tender, swollen, tyrannical, absurd; I would never take the consequences of interfering with it.
Every year, when you’re a child, you become a different person.
She smiled at me with such merriment of recognition, and such a yearning to be recognised in return, that you would think this was a moment granted to her when she was let out of the shadows for one day in a thousand.
Aunt Elspeth and Auntie Grace stood in their doorway, ceremoniously, to watch me go, and I felt as if I were a ship with their hope on it, dropping down over the horizon.
If you live long enough as a parent nowadays, you discover that you have made mistakes you didn’t bother to know about along with the ones you do know about all too well. You are somewhat humbled at heart, sometimes disgusted with yourself.
You cannot let your parents anywhere near your real humiliations.
Now I no longer believe that people’s secrets are defined and communicable, or their feelings full-blown and easy to recognize.
Now that I think of it, she looked splendid. I wish I had met her somewhere else. I wish I had appreciated her as she deserved. I wish that everything had gone differently.
This was the great difference between disappointing him and disappointing somebody like my mother, or even my aunts. Masculine self-centeredness made him restful to be with.
He was evidently the sort of person who posed questions that were traps for you to fall into.
Moments of kindness and reconciliation are worth having even if the parting has to come sooner or later.
Time is something that interests me a whole lot – past and present, and how the past appears as people change.