The thing about memories wasn’t that many of them inevitably faded, but that repeated recall of the ones you remembered burnished them into shining, gorgeous lies
It is like reading two books, one with each eye, and understanding them both.
In fact, although I am not aware of it (and I am never aware of it, no matter how many times I have the dream) her suicide is a foregone conclusion. It is this way in dreams: when decisions are being made, they have already been made.
As he drifted off, his father came to visit him, clothed in all his possible shapes.
Be the time he finds his way out of the chamber and the planetarium, he has become me.
I have already lost the knowledge of the word whose sound has the shape of a soul. But perhaps it’s not too late. Come with me. Hurry now. We still have a chance to be young.
And so Rebecca consigned herself to, not ignorance, but a judicious incuriosity: she decided, for the time being, to live with the constant, cryptic reminders that the scope of another person’s soul could never be fully surveyed.
Storytelling–that’s not the future. The future, I’m afraid, is flashes and impulses. It’s mode up of moments and fragments, and stories won’t survive.
Isn’t that the fantasy? If I go back in time, knowing what people back then didn’t know, then I can change history! But history made you what you are. And it’s bigger than any one man.
To agree to a marriage is to consent to a mutual act of transformation, to promise to ensure that the versions of yourselves that you will become will remain in harmony, though you yourselves can never stay the same.
And just as he said of me, the thing that his heart desired was not the thing that he professed to want.
This is the last moment of contentment untainted by sorrow, when the brain hesitates before delivering the message to the heart that it knows it must.
She drank the glass with breakfast and poured herself another. By the time she’d gotten Sean off to school (second grade) the edges had been taken off her thoughts and the world seemed as it should be: not too real, but real enough.
But life isn’t neat the way a story is. And if you try to pretend it is, then you just make yourself unhappy, or screw yourself over.
Think of it. Going to sleep and waking up later in a science fiction future. It’ll be fantastic. The shock and the wonder of it.
In the moment when he died at my hand he had his own heart’s desire—not the actual future, but a hope for the best possible future, one that he could not himself imagine.
As an act of goodwill you must sacrifice all the futures you might have for the one that he designs for you.
The palimpsests of molecules need not be overwritten, for machines make once-ephemeral words persist: they collect in gutters; they pile up and require sweeping; they hang in air like morning fog.
I like Carson. I really like Carson. I can hand an idea to him that’s still a little rough, and he can turn it over and tumble it and hand it back to me shining. And I can do the same for him.
I truly do not know, and that unnameable feeling that comes with not knowing: it must be worse than grief. It must.
The thing about memories wasn’t that many of them inevitably faded, but that repeated recall of the ones you remembered burnished them into shining, gorgeous lies.
Love, no matter how high or low its form, must be requited, or the lover suffers.
That friend of hers has got to go, though. You’re lucky you got stuck with that Dexter guy instead of
Best, perhaps to keep one’s nickels forever in one’s pockets, to savor delicious possibility over mundane experience.
I still have enough faith in language to believe that if I place enough words next to each other on the page, they will start to speak with sounds of their own.
But space shrinks when you get old, and things lose their wonder, and the wisest thing to do then is to try your best to sleep.
He felt that race was not a characteristic that was a part of his identity, but one that was projected upon him by the gaze of others who looked on him; as such it was ephemeral, there and gone as soon as the gaze was broken.
Perhaps my gift to you will be as simple as a single word, whispered into your ear by one of your servants as you lie on your deathbed, a word that solves a final mystery and makes it easy for you to slip quietly into the dark.
I ask you to kill my father for the crime of bringing me into existence.
We want all possible things made actual, the perpetual possibility of perfection, the best of all futures all at once.
I can’t comprehend why any black man with even a lick of sense would have the slightest bit of interest in time travel. Going backward in time? A black man? You have got to be out of your mind.
Later—how much later? Hard to tell. In times of tragedy clocks will trick you—Philip stood in the kitchen doorway.
He falls asleep believing he’s been robbed, not knowing that the summoning of demons is almost always unwitting.
If the worst thing a physicist could say about a statement is that it was “false,” the best thing he could say is that it was “interesting.
He pulled out his wallet and extracted a twenty-dollar bill, fastidiously folding it in half so that the crease cut across the face of Theodore Roosevelt, with its shining spectacles and its Chesire Cat grin.
But the hair on her arms did not stand on end; she did not experience any strange instances of déjà vu; she did not see the ghosts of future selves shimmering before her, shouting stock picks back through time.
If the future changed, and the time traveler we’re talking about was from that future, and was the product of events that created that future, why wouldn’t the time traveler also change when those events changed?
But we think that if a human were to violate conventional causality—”By time traveli