“We can only know what we can truly imagine. Finally what we see comes from ourselves.”
“The anger of the weak never goes away, Professor, it just gets a little moldy. It molds like a beautiful blue cheese in the dark, growing stronger, and more interesting. The poor and the weak die with all their anger intact and probably those angers go on growing in the dark of the grave like the hair and the nails.”
“Never in your life have you been helpless—under somebody’s heel. You never lived where your enemies held power over you, power to run your life or wipe it out. You can’t understand. That’s how come you stand there feeding me empty slogans!” Luciente bowed her head. “You crit me justly, Connie. Forgive me. I’ll try to see your situation more clearly and make less loud noises in your ears.”
“Hate them more than you hate yourself, and you’ll stay free!”
“Suddenly she thought that these men believed feeling itself a disease, something to be cut out like a rotten appendix. Cold, calculating, ambitious, believing themselves rational and superior, they chased the crouching female animal through the brain with a scalpel. From an early age she had been told that what she felt was unreal and didn’t matter. Now they were about to place in her something that would rule her feelings like a thermostat”
“I want to do something very important. Like fly into the past and make it come out right.”
“But I think we often settle for sex when we want love. And we often want love when we need something else, like a good job or a chance to go back to school.”
“She felt pride and shame wash through her. Mala, the woman who acted. To thrust herself forward into the world.”
“Whoever owned this place, these cities, whoever owned those glittering glassy office buildings in midtown filled with the purr of money turning over, those refineries over the river in Jersey with their flames licking the air, they gave nothing back. They took and took and left their garbage choking the air, the river, the sea itself. Choking her. A life of garbage. Human garbage. She had had too little of what her body needed and too little of what her soul could imagine. She had been able to do little in the years of her life, and that little had been ill paid or punished. The rest was garbage.”
“practice makes perfect and although God did create Adam he was more accomplished when the time came for him to create Eve.”
“A man can only do a given thing so many times with freshness and spirit--then, no matter what it is, it becomes like an office task. I enjoy cards and whoring, but even cards and whoring can grow boresome. You tup your wife a thousand times and that becomes an office task, too.”
“This is Kurt Vonnegut in the effing state-of-the-art lethal injection facility in Huntsville, effing, Texas signing off.”
“I was not offended, my love. An insult is like a drink; it affects one only if accepted. And pride is too heavy baggage for my journey...”
“When she returned to her cabin, Dr.Gabriel was already there examining Sterling's back. Sterling lay on his stomach, on her bunk, his eyes closed. She wondered if he was sleeping. She doubted it. He was probably unconscious. Or perhaps he'd closed his eyes in order to hide what he was feeling.”
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