“The English language lacks the words to mourn an absence. For the loss of a parent, grandparent, spouse, child or friend, we have all manner of words and phrases, some helpful some not. Still we are conditioned to say something, even if it is only “I’m sorry for your loss.” But for an absence, for someone who was never there at all, we are wordless to capture that particular emptiness. For those who deeply want children and are denied them, those missing babies hover like silent ephemeral shadows over their lives. Who can describe the feel of a tiny hand that is never held?”
“I turned to books for comfort.
(Former First Lady, Laura Bush)”
“I was born upon the prairie, where the wind blew free, and there was nothing to break the light of the sun. I was born where there were no enclosures, and where everything drew a free breath."
the Great Comanche war chief, Ten Bears”
“Both here and in Russia, he repeatedly chided Putin for cracking down on the press, telling the Russian president that his country had to have a free press, that a free press is essential for a democracy. “You need to have an independent press,” George would tell him. And Putin would invariably reply, “Well, you control your press.” George would shake his head and say, “No, Vladimir, I don’t. I wish sometimes that I could control them, but I can’t. They are free to say whatever they want. In our country, the press is free to write terrible things about me, and I can’t do anything about it.” But Russia is a country without those traditions, and with no memory of them, and many in Russia believed that the U.S. government did control our press. In fact, following a summit meeting, one of the first questions George got from a Russian newsman essentially was, How can you complain to President Putin about the Russian press when you fired Dan Rather?”
“We must choose between a world of fear and a world of progress. We cannot stand by and do nothing while dangers gather.”
“I should go. My date..."
"That wasn't on the agenda for tonight."
He gave me a wicked grin.
“People seem to believe that when you find your soul mate, the one person who completes you, that things will just be lollipops and sunshine. I hate to stomp on your tootsie rolls, but being the right person for your mate does not suddenly turn you into this giving, selfless, loving, gentle, and all that other crap person. You are still the person you were without them; the difference is now when you aren’t any of those good things, you have someone who will love you anyway.”
“Deviants and monsters ran the camps where families were sent up the chimney or turned into bars of soap, but they would have been powerless without the clerks who sat anonymously behind typewriters and gave them bureaucratic legitimacy.”
“So it went. Bob was increasingly cynical, leery, uneasy; Jesse was increasingly cavalier, merry, moody, fey, unpredictable. If his gross anatomy suggested a strong smith in his twenties, his actual physical constitution was that of a man who was incrementally dying. He was sick with rheums and aches and lung congestions, he tilted against chairs and counters and walls, in cold weather he limped with a cane. He coughed incessantly when lying down, his clever mind was often in conflict, insomnia stained his eye sockets like soot, he seemed in a state of mourning. He counteracted the smell of neglected teeth with licorice and candies, he browned his graying hair with dye, he camouflaged his depressions and derangements with masquerades of extreme cordiality, courtesy, and good will toward others.”
“One gives way to the temptation, only to rise from it again, afterwards, with a great eagerness to reestablish one's dignity, as if it were a tombstone to place on the grave of one's shame, and a monument to hide and sign the memory of our weaknesses. Everybody's in the same case. Some folks haven't the courage to say certain things, that's all!
THE STEP-DAUGHTER: All appear to have the courage to do them though.”
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