Tom Franklin · 274 pages
Rating: (34.5K votes)
“Maybe Larry was wrong about the word friend, maybe he'd been shoved away from everybody for so long all he was was a sponge for the wrongs other people did.”
“Was that what childhood was? Things rushing by out a window, the trees connected by motion, going too fast for him to notice the consequences?”
“The seat belt irked his father more than Uncle Colin's not eating meat, because, though his father never said it, Larry knew he considered seat belts cowardly.”
“Well, sugar," she said, limping off, "don't be too hard on yourself. Now and again it's okay to let yourself off the hook."
But that was the trouble, wasn't it? Letting himself off the hook had been his way of life.”
“...in the woods, if you stopped, if you grew still, you'd hear a whole new set of sounds, wind rasping through silhouetted leaves and the cries and chatter of blue jays and brown thrashers and redbirds and sparrows, the calling of crows and hawks, squirrels barking, frogs burping, the far braying of dogs, armadillos snorkeling through dead leaves...”
“He found the first skipped meals were the hardest, the hunger a hollow ache. The longer he went without eating, though, the second day, the third, the pain would subside from an ache to the memory of an ache and finally to only the memory of a memory. Until you ate you didn't know how hungry you were, how empty you'd become. Wallace's visits had shown him that being lonesome was its own fast, that after going unnourished for so long, even the foulest bite could remind your body how much it needed to eat. That you could be starving and not even know it.”
“At some point, Alice slipped one arm and then the other into the coat's sleeves, she buttoned its buttons, starting at the top. Silas had followed her, still not seeing what an emblem of defeat, shame, loss, hopelessness, the coat was. With such gaps in his understanding, he saw very clearly how the boy he'd been had grown up to be the man he was.”
“He was tired of having only three channels.”
“Soon the Mississippi night hummed by outside his windows, bug, bird, frog, the wind on his face.”
“Their lives had stopped, frozen, as if in a picture, and the days were nothing more than empty squares on a calendar.”
“The land had a way of covering the wrongs of people.”
“never seen real darkness, not in the city, but how, if you stood peeing off the cabin porch on a moonless night, or took a walk through the woods where the treetops stitched out the stars, you could almost forget you were there, you felt invisible. Country dark, his mother called it.”
“The visit hadn't lasted much longer, and Wallace never said what he'd done, but after Larry watched him go, he'd spent the rest of the night on his porch as daylight crept through the trees like am army of crafty boys.”
“Larry felt a strange forgiveness for him because all monsters were misunderstood.”
“they say bad things come in threes, so we got our quota for a while ain’t we.”
“You can bury the past but it always seems to come back, one way or another.”
“Maybe Larry was wrong about the word friend, maybe he'd been shoved away from everybody for so long all he was was a sponge for the wrongs other people did. Maybe, after all this time, he'd started to believe their version of him.”
“Where’s that tree?” Larry said, thinking he might take Cindy. “Is the rope still there?” Glancing at him, his father said, “Naw.” “What happened to it?” “They cut it down. Mill did.” He pushed his plate aside and rose from the table. “Enjoyed it,” he said, got another beer from the refrigerator, and went into the den.”
“smell of natural gas, piped from the big metal tank in the backyard, filled once a month by a truck.”
“It was country dark, as Alice Jones had called these nights, the absence of any light but what you brought to the table. He sped up, his eyes focused on what was before him, and drove toward home.”
“Sound more mean than crazy,” he said. “I don’t know if I want to go”
“interviewing that people said he could make a stump confess to saying “timber.”
“Bad cotton country meant good moonshining country.”
“... that she might slip off into that space where she stared, go for good to whatever she kept watching.”
“Forget the girl who had everything. She died when her father did."
"Nothing is where you start. Own nothing. Know nothing."
"But why would I want to do that?"
His smile made her smile in return.
"Because then you can do anything.”
“Have you ever noticed that when people use the expression 'I have to say', what follows usually needn't be said?”
“I never say the things I really want to. If I did, I'd have no friends.”
“If you're asking all this because of Wendell, forget it. Wendell has a few marbles missing when it comes to women." I like that expression very much, even though I disagree. If anything, Wendell has more marbles than he needs when it comes to women.”
“Los mortales se olvidan de advertir que el tiempo pasa.”
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