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“I knew God gave me these dreams. How could I give up on them?”
“The thing about dreams, though, is they usually sound crazy to everyone but you. All it takes is one other person to buy into them to keep you going.”
“War is always far worse on the poor than the rich. Always.”
“I looked up at the giant Jumbotron television screen. There on the screen I saw President Bush, standing, saluting the flag. They then split the image in half. On one side was the president, his hand over his heart. On the other side was me, Lopez Lomong, the lost boy carrying the flag of his new home. I am no longer a lost boy or an orphan. The flag in my hand is my identity; it is who I am now and who I never was before.”
“The thing about dreams, though, is they usually sound crazy to everyone but you.”
“I walked down the track, beaming with pride. God had brought me so far, through war, through eating garbage and running to forget about my empty stomach. No matter what I went through, God was always with me. He had always had this moment planned for me through both the good times and the bad, from the killing fields of Sudan to these Olympic Games and back again.”
“I do not know how we could run so far and so fast and so long. We did not run with our own strength but with strength from God. That is the only explanation. The”
“I learned lots of things those first few weeks. First and foremost, I learned what it meant to be a refugee. From the moment I stepped into Kakuma, I became a boy without a country. A refugee camp is a kind of no-man’s-land. No one lives there by choice. You end up in places like Kakuma when you have no better option. Everyone who lived there just wanted to go home.”
“Watching people run on television was a revelation for me. Never before had I thought of running as a sport. When I ran, I did not think about conditions in the camp or the hunger in my belly. Running was my therapy, my release, my escape from the world around me.”
“There was another casualty of the September 11 attacks that very few people knew about at the time. In the wake of the attacks, the United States halted the program that brought me and many other lost boys to America. Heightened concerns over security left officials wary that terrorists might sneak into the country posing as lost boys.”
“Life is so full of unpredictable beauty and strange surprises. Sometimes that beauty is too much for me to handle. Do you know that feeling? When something is just too beautiful? When someone says something or writes something or plays something that moves you to the point of tears, maybe even changes you.”
“There was something tender and gentle about our love, something a little shy, that was like early spring.”
“The genius of the current caste system, and what most distinguishes it from its predecessors, is that it appears voluntary. People choose to commit crimes, and that's why they are locked up or locked out, we are told. This feature makes the politics of responsibility particularly tempting, as it appears the system can be avoided with good behavior. But herein lies the trap. All people make mistakes. All of us are sinners. All of us are criminals. All of us violate the law at some point in our lives. In fact, if the worst thing you have ever done is speed ten miles over the speed limit on the freeway, you have put yourself and others at more risk of harm than someone smoking marijuana in the privacy of his or her living room. Yet there are people in the United States serving life sentences for first-time drug offenses, something virtually unheard of anywhere else in the world.”
“The gilded chairs covered with their worn tapestry were set about stiffly like too many servants with nothing to do.”
“Emily peered at him and frowned, then began to dance on the grass. “Okay, Daddy,” Emily said. “When you’re ready to dance with me, this is what you do. First, you put your right hand around my waist like this, then hold your other hand out like this. Then we sway back and forth to the music.” Face animated, she gestured gracefully while talking, lost in the moment”
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