Coping the quote
12+ quotes from This Boy's Life by Tobias Wolff

Quotes from This Boy's Life

Tobias Wolff ·  304 pages

Rating: (22.2K votes)


“Fearlessness in those without power is maddening to those who have it.”
― Tobias Wolff, quote from This Boy's Life


“When we are green, still half-created, we believe that our dreams are rights, that the world is disposed to act in our best interests, and that falling and dying are for quitters. We live on the innocent and monstrous assurance that we alone, of all the people ever born, have a special arrangement whereby we will be allowed to stay green forever”
― Tobias Wolff, quote from This Boy's Life


“Knowing that everything comes to an end is a gift of experience, a consolation gift for knowing that we ourselves are coming to an end. Before we get it we live in a continuous present, and imagine the future as more of that present. Happiness is endless happiness, innocent of its own sure passing. Pain is endless pain.”
― Tobias Wolff, quote from This Boy's Life


“I was giving up--being realistic, as people liked to say, meaning the same thing. Being realistic made me feel bitter.”
― Tobias Wolff, quote from This Boy's Life


“Why were Jack and his brother digging post holes? A fence there would run parallel to the one that already enclosed the farmyard. The Welches had no animals to keep in or out - a fence there could serve no purpose. Their work was pointless. Years later, while I was waiting for a boat to take me across the river, I watched two Vietnamese women methodically hitting a discarded truck tire with sticks. They did it for a good long while, and were still doing it when I crossed the river. They were part of the dream from which I recognized the Welches, my defeat-dream, my damnation-dream, with its solemn choreography of earnest useless acts.”
― Tobias Wolff, quote from This Boy's Life


“And in my heart I despised the life I led in Seattle. I was sick of it and had no idea how to change it. I thought that in Chinook, away from Taylor and Silver, away from Marian, away from people who had already made up their minds about me, I could be different. I could introduce myself as a scholar-athlete, a boy of dignity and consequence, and without any reason to doubt me people would believe I was that boy, and thus allow me to be that boy. I recognized no obstacle to miraculous change but the incredulity of others. This was an idea that died hard, if it ever really died at all.”
― Tobias Wolff, quote from This Boy's Life


“Happiness is endless hapiness, innocent of its own sure passing. Pain is endless pain.”
― Tobias Wolff, quote from This Boy's Life


“I've allowed some of these points to stand, because this is a book of memory, and memory has its own story to tell. But I have done my best to make it tell a truthful story.”
― Tobias Wolff, quote from This Boy's Life


“I recognized no obstacle to miraculous change but the incredulity of others. This was an idea that died hard, if it ever really died at all.”
― Tobias Wolff, quote from This Boy's Life


“It was like fishing a swamp, where you feel the tug of something that at first seems promising and then resistant and finally hopeless as you realize that you've snagged the bottom, that you have the whole planet on the other end of your line.”
― Tobias Wolff, quote from This Boy's Life


“Want! You must want something. What do you want?”
― Tobias Wolff, quote from This Boy's Life


“And I learned that it's a bad idea to curse if you're in trouble, but a good idea to sing, if you can.”
― Tobias Wolff, quote from This Boy's Life


About the author

Tobias Wolff
Born place: in Birmingham, Alabama, The United States
Born date June 19, 1945
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