Quotes from Tender Morsels

Margo Lanagan ·  436 pages

Rating: (5.2K votes)


“You are pure-hearted, Branza, and lovely, and you have never done a moment's wrong. But you are a living creature, born to make a real life, however it cracks your heart. However sweet that other place was, it was not real. It was an artifact of your mam's imagination; it was a dream of hers and a desire; you could not have stayed there forever and called yourself alive. Now you are in the true world, and a great deal more is required of you. Here you must befriend real wolves, and lure real birds down from the sky. Here you must endure real people around you, and we are not uniformly kind; we are damaged and impulsive, each in our own way. It is harder. It is not safe. But it is what you were born to. (357)”
― Margo Lanagan, quote from Tender Morsels


“There is something about talking in the night, with the shreds of sleep around your ears, with the silences between one remark and another, the town dark and dreaming beyond your own walls. It draws the truth out of you, straight from its little dark pool down there, where usually you guard it so careful, and wave your hands over it and hum and haw to protect people's feelings, to protect your own . . . You can bring out the jaggedest feelings - if you are my wife and know how to state them calm - into the night quiet. They will float there for consideration, harming no one.”
― Margo Lanagan, quote from Tender Morsels


“Now you are in the true world, and a great deal more is required of you. Here you must befriend real wolves, and lure real birds down from the sky. Here you must endure real people around you, and we are not uniformly kind; we are damaged and impulsive, each in our own way. It is harder. It is not safe. But it is what you were born to.”
― Margo Lanagan, quote from Tender Morsels


“She hardly knew what to do, it had been so long since such strong feelings had borne down on her. It was like carrying another creature inside her, and nothing so benign and natural as a baby. Undamped, untamed, the pain and exultation of her attachment to them blew through Liga like a storm-wind carrying sharp leaves and struggling birds. How long she had known her daughters, and how well, and in what extraordinary vividness and detail! How blithely she had done the work of rearing them - it seemed to her now that she had had cause for towering, disabling anxieties about them; that what had seemed little plaints and sorrows in their childhoods were in fact off-drawings from much greater tragedies, from which she had tried to keep them but could not. And the joys she had had of them, too, their embraces and laughter - it was all too intense to be endured, this connection with them, which was a miniature of the connection with the forces that drove planet and season - the relentlessness of them, the randomness, the susceptibility to glory, to accident, to disaster. How soft had been her life in that other place, how safe and mild! And here she was, back where terrors could immobilize her, and wonders too; where life might become gulps of strong ale rather than sips of bloom-tea. She did not know whether she was capable of lifting the cup, let alone drinking the contents.”
― Margo Lanagan, quote from Tender Morsels


“But heart's desires? My dear, I see by your misery - by this very request you are making - that you know more of true men's and women's hearts than once you did, than your mother's world permitted you to see. Such chipped and cracked and outright broken things they are, are they not? They have their illnesses too, and their impulses. And hearts are not always connected well to minds, and even if they are, minds are not always clear and commonsensical. A heart may desire a thing powerfully indeed, but that heart's desire might be what a person least needs, for her health, for her continuing happiness.”
― Margo Lanagan, quote from Tender Morsels



“The earth’s lungs, coated in green ooze and thaw, breathed out blossom-scent and sour rot and fungus-must, wet and warm and aware, where before the air had been cold and blind, remote as the moon.”
― Margo Lanagan, quote from Tender Morsels


“These words came, quite clear, like small, evil people, across the cobbles to Branza’s ankles, where they stood and smirked up at her.”
― Margo Lanagan, quote from Tender Morsels


“How sweet it was to be scolded by such a tiny. ”
― Margo Lanagan, quote from Tender Morsels


“Home is home, no? - whatever layabouts you live with, whatever tempers and timidities. I was glad to glimpse them, and glad to go to my own bed among them, with the right smell and the right hollows holding me . . .”
― Margo Lanagan, quote from Tender Morsels


“I knew that place should be my home, but after my night in Noer's mind it seemed a peculiar pile, its streets a maze, needlessly crowded, where we slender people, so naked of fur we must make extra skins for ourselves, muddled and ambled and skipped in our dance of alliances and enmities, offenses and fancies. We thought too much; we calculated too hard. I would rather have wandered among trees, with their more meaningful conversation. I would rather have been solitary and unharried, never required to speak nor account for myself to do anything else but what come natural.”
― Margo Lanagan, quote from Tender Morsels



“Life is so long, and too hard, and then it ends so cruel and sudden!”
― Margo Lanagan, quote from Tender Morsels


“But Urdda stood firm. 'Where do you come from, sir?'

'I come' - the littlee-man stalked towards her in a way that might have been menacing, had he been full-sized - 'from Smelly-bumhole Land. You may call me Mister Odiferous. Up through the arse of the world I come here, and when I'm finished I will squeeze myself back out it.”
― Margo Lanagan, quote from Tender Morsels


“You must watch and wait, Branza, to see what powers you have and don't have. It is not like home. We ruled there. Everything fell into place around what we wanted. Here, we are not the only ones wanting, and we must make room for other people's desires.”
― Margo Lanagan, quote from Tender Morsels


“But how could they be tormenters if Branza refused to be tormented by them?”
― Margo Lanagan, quote from Tender Morsels


“With her heels kicking the stone’s side high above the ground, Branza was a girl again, though she was full-grown long ago; though the years had accumulated behind her in their great pointless pile.”
― Margo Lanagan, quote from Tender Morsels



“All the expressions that are possible crossed its face, as if its thoughts were wise and limitless one moment, daft and animal the next. And Liga too was pulled towards awe, that this little girl-thing gave off such an air of being entitled, and then towards pity at its abjectness and its frailty and-how soft it was, the surface of it, and so warm! She could not believe the tiny makings of its mouth, or its perfected eyelashes, its ears like uncrumpling buds, all down and tenderness. She was full of the joy of her father being gone-that she could sit like this all night if she wanted, not bothered or harangued, without a remark from any other person, and watch this creature busy with its morsel of life, its scrap of sleep, its breaths light as moth-wings lifting its narrow red chest.”
― Margo Lanagan, quote from Tender Morsels


“You may never be entirely happy; few people are. You may never achieve your heart's desire in this world, for people seldom do. Sit by enough deathbeds, Branza, and you will hear your fill of stories of missed chances, and wrong turnings, and spurned opportunities for love. It is required of you only to be here, not to be happy.”
― Margo Lanagan, quote from Tender Morsels


“She had a different kind of boldness, a strength that did not defy that of men so much as ignore it, or take its place without question beside it - Urdda wanted some of that boldness.”
― Margo Lanagan, quote from Tender Morsels


“Always your mind goes to the worst, Mam, and the worst very seldom happens.”
― Margo Lanagan, quote from Tender Morsels


“I may not be happy," she said, "but I will be.”
― Margo Lanagan, quote from Tender Morsels



“How could a person be clumsy, just standing? And yet she felt she was, as clumsy as one of those blocks of boxwood being seasoned there, unshaped, indelicate.”
― Margo Lanagan, quote from Tender Morsels


“It is only, she thought, that I thought you brought my bear, and life lit up for a moment. And now it is returned to its usual dimness, which truly I had thought was bright enough for me.”
― Margo Lanagan, quote from Tender Morsels


“Nothing in my tale seemed to surprised the woman. The cat, on the other hand, seemed not to find a word of it credible.”
― Margo Lanagan, quote from Tender Morsels


“And here she was, back where terrors could immobilize her, and wonders too, where life might become gulps of strong ale rather than sips of bloom-tea. She did not know whether she was capable of lifting the cup, let alone drinking the contents.”
― Margo Lanagan, quote from Tender Morsels


“Here, we are not the only ones wanting, and we must make room for other people's desires.”
― Margo Lanagan, quote from Tender Morsels



“The scents of these three, for instance, were so distinct, though they were clearly a family: the dark girl more savory and the golden-haired one more honeylike and they woman sweetest of all- I could not place what flower it was she recalled to me, or what sweetmeat.”
― Margo Lanagan, quote from Tender Morsels


About the author

Margo Lanagan
Born place: in Waratah, Newcastle, New South Wales, Australia
See more on GoodReads

Popular quotes

“You’re a prickly, stubborn, spirited woman.”
“Don’t forget crude, rude, and vulgar.”
“Only when it suits you. You’re sly when occasion calls for it, direct to the point of forgetting tact even exists, sarcastic, fierce, I did mention stubborn, didn’t I?”
“Yes,” she said dryly.
“You’re also smart, kind, gentle, beautiful, and always cling to your personal integrity, even when it’s in your best interests to abandon it.” A little warm feeling spread through her chest, and even her natural suspicion that he was lying couldn’t quite extinguish it. Where was he going with this? “You’re also quite funny,” he said.
“Oh, I amuse you?” He gave her one of his devastating, slightly wicked smiles.
“You have no idea.” Arrogant ass.
“And all of that means what?”
“Just that I mean to have you.” She frowned at him. “I mean to have you, Rose, you and all of your thorns. I’m a disagreeable and stubborn bastard, but I’m not a fool. You didn’t really expect me to pass you up, did you?”
― Ilona Andrews, quote from On the Edge


“Fate has a way of getting what she wants, no matter how we try to avoid it.”
― Kresley Cole, quote from Pleasure of a Dark Prince


“Two great appetites of the soul - the urge to independence and self-determination and the urge to self-transcendence - were fused with, and interpreted in the light of, a third - the urge to worship”
― Aldous Huxley, quote from The Doors of Perception & Heaven and Hell


“Wealth aggregates and becomes political power. Simple as that. ‘Corporation’ is just the most recent name for it.”
― Daniel Suarez, quote from Freedom™


“They were best friends and partners who'd finally gotten over all the bullshit and had come to terms with the mutual attraction, deciding that fucking was better than always being so tense about it. That was the end of the story.”
― Ais, quote from Evenfall


Interesting books

Restoration
(2.2K)
Restoration
by Randi Cooley Wilson
Getting the Girl
(5.2K)
Getting the Girl
by Markus Zusak
Who Owns the Future?
(2.6K)
Who Owns the Future?
by Jaron Lanier
From the Wreckage
(2.4K)
From the Wreckage
by Michele G. Miller
Irish trilogy collection
(4.9K)
Irish trilogy collec...
by Nora Roberts
After the Prophet: The Epic Story of the Shia-Sunni Split
(5K)
After the Prophet: T...
by Lesley Hazleton

About BookQuoters

BookQuoters is a community of passionate readers who enjoy sharing the most meaningful, memorable and interesting quotes from great books. As the world communicates more and more via texts, memes and sound bytes, short but profound quotes from books have become more relevant and important. For some of us a quote becomes a mantra, a goal or a philosophy by which we live. For all of us, quotes are a great way to remember a book and to carry with us the author’s best ideas.

We thoughtfully gather quotes from our favorite books, both classic and current, and choose the ones that are most thought-provoking. Each quote represents a book that is interesting, well written and has potential to enhance the reader’s life. We also accept submissions from our visitors and will select the quotes we feel are most appealing to the BookQuoters community.

Founded in 2023, BookQuoters has quickly become a large and vibrant community of people who share an affinity for books. Books are seen by some as a throwback to a previous world; conversely, gleaning the main ideas of a book via a quote or a quick summary is typical of the Information Age but is a habit disdained by some diehard readers. We feel that we have the best of both worlds at BookQuoters; we read books cover-to-cover but offer you some of the highlights. We hope you’ll join us.