“I'm like you,' he said. 'I remember everything.'
I stopped for a second. If you remember everything, I wanted to say, and if you are really like me, then before you leave tomorrow, or when you’re just ready to shut the door of the taxi and have already said goodbye to everyone else and there’s not a thing left to say in this life, then, just this once, turn to me, even in jest, or as an afterthought, which would have meant everything to me when we were together, and, as you did back then, look me in the face, hold my gaze, and call me by your name”
“We rip out so much of ourselves to be cured of things faster than we should that we go bankrupt by the age of thirty and have less to offer each time we start with someone new. But to feel nothing so as not to feel anything - what a waste!”
“We had the stars, you and I. And this is given once only.”
“He came. He left. Nothing else had changed. I had not changed. The world hadn't changed. Yet nothing would be the same. All that remains is dreammaking and strange remembrance.”
“People who read are hiders. They hide who they are. People who hide don’t always like who they are.”
“And on that evening when we grow older still we'll speak about these two young men as though they were two strangers we met on the train and whom we admire and want to help along. And we'll want to call it envy, because to call it regret would break our hearts.”
“If I could have him like this in my dreams every night of my life, I'd stake my entire life on dreams and be done with the rest.”
“Is it better to speak or die?”
“Look,' he interrupted. 'You had a beautiful friendship. Maybe more than a friendship. And I envy you. In my place, most parents would hope the whole thing goes away, or pray that their sons land on their feet soon enough. But I am not such a parent. In your place, if there is pain, nurse it, and if there is a flame, don't snuff it out, don't be brutal with it. Withdrawal can be a terrible thing when it keeps us awake at night, and watching others forget us sooner than we'd want to be forgotten is no better. We rip out so much of ourselves to be cured of things faster than we should that we go bankrupt by the age of thirty and have less to offer each time we start with someone new. But to feel nothing so as not to feel anything—what a waste!”
“Most of us can't help but live as though we've got two lives to live, one is the mockup, the other the finished version, and then there are all those versions in between. But there's only one, and before you know it, your heart is worn out, and, as for your body, there comes a point when no one looks at it, much less wants to come near it. Right now there's sorrow. I don't envy the pain. But I envy you the pain. (p. 225)”
“Did I want him to act? Or would I prefer a lifetime of longing provided we both kept this little Ping-Pong game going: not knowing, not-not-knowing, not-not-not-knowing? Just be quiet, say nothing, and if you can't say "yes," don't say "no," say "later." Is this why people say "maybe" when they mean "yes," but hope you'll think it's "no" when all they really mean is, Please, just ask me once more, and once more after that?”
“We are not written for one instrument alone; I am not, neither are you.”
“I suddenly realized that we were on borrowed time, that time is always borrowed, and that the lending agency exacts its premium precisely when we are least prepared to pay and need to borrow more...”
“Call me by your name and I'll call you by mine.”
“Maybe it was the alcohol, maybe it was the truth, maybe I didn't want things to turn abstract, but I felt I should say it, because this was the moment to say it, because it suddenly dawned on me that this was why I had come, to tell him 'You are the only person I'd like to say goodbye to when I die, because only then will this thing I call my life make any sense. And if I should hear that you died, my life as I know it, the me who is speaking with you now, will cease to exist.”
“Everyone goes through a period of Traviamento - when we take, say, a different turn in life, the other via. Dante himself did. Some recover, some pretend to recover, some never come back, some chicken out before even starting, and some, for fear of taking any turns, find themselves leading the wrong life all life long.”
“Twenty years was yesterday, and yesterday was just earlier this morning, and morning seemed light-years away.”
“Every time I go back to Rome, I go back to that one spot. It is still alive for me, still resounds with something totally present, as though a heart stolen from a tale by Poe still throbbed under the ancient slate pavement to remind me that, here, I had finally encountered the life that was right for me but had failed to have.”
“Time makes us sentimental. Perhaps, in the end, it is because of time that we suffer.”
“You'll kill me if you stop.”
“I'm not wise at all. I told you, I know nothing. I know books, and I know how to string words together--it doesn't mean I know how to speak about the tings that matter most to me."
"But you're doing it now--in a way."
"Yes, in a way--that's how I always say things: in a way.”
“I may have come close, but I never had what you had. Something always held me back or stood in the way. How you live your life is your business. But remember, our hearts and our bodies are given to us only once. Most of us can't help but live as though we've got two lives to live, one is the mockup, the other the finished version, and then there are all those versions in between. But there's only one, and before you know it, your heart is worn out, and, as for your body, there comes a point when no one looks at it, much less wants to come near it. Right now there's sorrow. I don't envy the pain. But I envy you the pain.”
“Over the years I'd lodged him in the permanent past, my pluperfect lover, put him on ice, stuffed him with memories and mothballs like a hunted ornament confabulating with the ghost of all my evenings. I'd dust him off from time to time and then put him back on the mantelpiece. He no longer belonged to earth or to life. All I was likely to discover at this point wasn't just how distant were the paths we'd taken, it was the measure of loss that was going to strike me--a loss I didn't mind thinking about in abstract terms but which would hurt when stared at in the face, the way nostalgia hurts long after we've stopped thinking of things we lost and may never have cared for.”
“They are embossed on every song that was a hit that summer, in every novel I read during and after his stay, on anything from the smell of rosemary on hot days to the frantic rattle of the cicadas in the afternoon—smells and sounds I’d grown up with and known every year of my life until then but that had suddenly turned on me and acquired an inflection forever colored by the events of that summer.”
“Later that evening in my diary, I wrote: I was exagerrating when I said I thought you hated the piece. What I meant to say was: I thought you hated me. I was hoping you’d persuade me of the opposite—and you did, for a while. Why won’t I believe it tomorrow morning?”
“Whoever said the soul and the body met in the pineal gland was a fool. It's the asshole, stupid.”
“What I wanted to preserve was the turbulent gasp in his voice which lingered with me for days afterward and told me that, if I could have him like this in my dreams every night of my life, I'd stake my entire life on dreams and be done with the rest. (p. 109)”
“At one hundred, surely you learn to overcome loss and grief—or do they hound you till the bitter end?”
“I wanted him dead too, so that if I couldn't stop thinking about him and worrying about when would be the next time I'd see him, at least his death would put an end to it. I wanted to kill him myself, even, so as to let him know how much his mere existence had come to bother me, how unbearable his ease with everything and everyone, taking all things in stride, his tireless I'm-okay-with-this-and-that, his springing across the gate to the beach when everyone else opened the latch first, to say nothing of his bathings suits, his spot in paradise, his cheeky Later!, his lip-smacking love for apricot juice. If I didn't kill him, then I'd cripple him for life, so that he'd be with us in a wheelchair and never go back to the States. If he were in a wheelchair, I would always know where he was, and he'd be easy to find. I would feel superior to him and become his master, now that he was crippled.
Then it hit me that I could have killed myself instead, or hurt myself badly enough and let him know why I'd done it. If I hurt my face, I'd want him to look at me and wonder why, why might anyone do this to himself, until, years and years later--yes, Later!--he'd finally piece the puzzle together and beat his head against the wall.”
“What is life without this? which was why, in the end, it was I, and not her, who blurted out, not once, but many, many times, You'll kill me if you stop, you'll kill me if you stop, because it was also my way of bringing full circle the dream and the fantasy, me and him, the longed-for words from mouth to mouth, which was when I must have begun using obscenities that he repeated after me, softly at first, till he said, "Call me by your name and I'll call you by my name," which I'd never done in my life before and which, as soon as I said my own name as though it were his, took me to a realm I never shared with anyone in my life before, or since.”
“Rolling across the floor, she reached Vigor. The monsignor crouched near the top of the firepit tunnel. She handed him her gun. “Down,” she ordered. “Shoot anybody that comes into view.” “What about you?” “No, don’t shoot me.” “I mean where are you going?”
“He has hazel eyes " Nachari remarked in astonishment.
He looked over at Jocelyn with approval.
"Yeah well " Marquis grumbled "we can toughen him up make up for that one little...feminine mishap."
Nachari feigned insult. "My eyes are green as well Marquis."
Marquis shrugged. "Yeah...and you became a wizard.”
“The gold and scarlet leaves that littered the countryside in great drifts whispered and chuckled among themselves, or took experimental runs from place to place, rolling like coloured hoops among the trees. It was as if they were practising something, preparing for something, and they would discuss it excitedly in rustly voices as they crowded round the tree trunks.”
“I’d chosen the regret I could live with best, that’s all. I’d chosen the life I belonged to.”
“I lay in bed and thought about how easy it was to hurt a person. It didn't have to be physical. All you had to do was take a good hard kick at something they cared about.”
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