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Barbara Kingsolver quotes (showing 31-60 of 993)

“In my own worst seasons I've come back from the colorless world of despair by forcing myself to look hard, for a long time, at a single glorious thing: a flame of red geranium outside my bedroom window. And then another: my daughter in a yellow dress. And another: the perfect outline of a full, dark sphere behind the crescent moon. Until I learned to be in love with my life again. Like a stroke victim retraining new parts of the brain to grasp lost skills, I have taught myself joy, over and over again(15).”
Barbara Kingsolver, High Tide in Tucson
“There were two things about Mama. One is she always expected the best out of me. And the other is that then no matter what I did, whatever I came home with, she acted like it was the moon I had just hung up in the sky and plugged in all the stars. Like I was that good.”
Barbara Kingsolver, The Bean Trees
“If we can't, as artists, improve on real life, we should put down our pencils and go bake bread.”
Barbara Kingsolver
tags: art
“But the last one: the baby who trails her scent like a flag of surrender through your life when there will be no more coming after - oh, that's love by a different name. She is the babe you hold in your arms for an hour after she's gone to sleep. If you put her down in the crib, she might wake up changed and fly away. So instead you rock by the window, drinking the light from her skin, breathing her exhaled dreams. Your heart bays to the double crescent moons of closed lashes on her cheeks. She's the one you can't put down.”
Barbara Kingsolver, The Poisonwood Bible
“A miscarriage is a natural and common event. All told, probably more women have lost a child from this world than haven't. Most don't mention it, and they go on from day to day as if it hadn't happened, so people imagine a woman in this situation never really knew or loved what she had.

But ask her sometime: how old would your child be now? And she'll know.”
Barbara Kingsolver, Animal Dreams
“Sometimes the strength of motherhood is greater than natural laws.”
Barbara Kingsolver, Homeland and Other Stories
“Solitude is a human presumption. Every quiet step is thunder to beetle life underfoot, a tug of impalpable thread on the web pulling mate to mate and predator to prey, a beginning or an end. Every choice is a world made new for the chosen.”
Barbara Kingsolver, Prodigal Summer
“Emelina and I took each other in. All morning I'd felt the strange disjuncture that comes from reconnecting with your past. There's such a gulf between yourself and who you were then, but people speak to that other person and it answers; it's like having a stranger as a house guest in your skin.”
Barbara Kingsolver, Animal Dreams
“It's frightening when things you love appear suddenly changed from what you have always known.”
Barbara Kingsolver, The Poisonwood Bible
“The truth needs so little rehearsal.”
Barbara Kingsolver
“Sugar, it's no parade but you'll get down the street one way or another, so you'd just as well throw your shoulders back and pick up the pace.”
Barbara Kingsolver, The Poisonwood Bible
“But I've swallowed my pride before, that's for sure. I'm practically lined with my mistakes on the inside like a bad-wallpapered bathroom.”
Barbara Kingsolver, The Poisonwood Bible
“Silence has many advantages. When you do not speak, other people presume you to be deaf or feeble-minded and promptly make a show of their own limitations.”
Barbara Kingsolver, The Poisonwood Bible
“I could never work out whether we were to view religion as a life-insurance policy or a life sentence. I can understand a wrathful God who'd just as soon dangle us all from a hook. And I can understand a tender, unprejudiced Jesus. But I could never quite feature the two of them living in the same house. You wind up walking on eggshells, never knowing which... is at home at the moment.”
Barbara Kingsolver, The Poisonwood Bible
“Every betrayal contains a perfect moment, a coin stamped heads or tails with salvation on the other side.”
Barbara Kingsolver, The Poisonwood Bible
“No other continent has endured such an unspeakably bizarre combination of foreign thievery and foreign goodwill.”
Barbara Kingsolver, The Poisonwood Bible
“Your dreams, what you hope for and all that, it's not separate from your life. It grows right up out of it. ”
Barbara Kingsolver, Animal Dreams
“To live is to change, to acquire the words of a story, and that is the only celebration we mortals really know.”
Barbara Kingsolver, The Poisonwood Bible
“Memories do not always soften with time; some grow edges like knives.”
Barbara Kingsolver, The Lacuna
“Every one of us is called upon, perhaps many times, to start a new life. A frightening diagnosis, a marriage, a move, loss of a job...And onward full-tilt we go, pitched and wrecked and absurdly resolute, driven in spite of everything to make good on a new shore. To be hopeful, to embrace one possibility after another--that is surely the basic instinct...Crying out: High tide! Time to move out into the glorious debris. Time to take this life for what it is.”
Barbara Kingsolver, High Tide in Tucson
“How pointless life could be, what a foolish business of inventing things to love, just so you could dread losing them.”
Barbara Kingsolver, Prodigal Summer
“At some point in my life I'd honestly hoped love would rescue me from the cold, drafty castle I lived in. But at another point, much earlier I think, I'd quietly begun to hope for nothing at all in the way of love, so as not to be disappointed. It works. It gets to be a habit.”
Barbara Kingsolver, Animal Dreams
“Humans can be fairly ridiculous animals.”
Barbara Kingsolver, Animal, Vegetable, Miracle: A Year of Food Life
“If you never stepped on anybody's toes, you never been for a walk.”
Barbara Kingsolver, Prodigal Summer
“I lost a child," she said, meeting Lusa's eyes directly. "I thought I wouldn't live through it. But you do. You learn to love the place somebody leaves behind for you.”
Barbara Kingsolver, Prodigal Summer
“A human being can be good or bad or right or wrong, maybe. But how can you say a person is illegal? You just can't. That's all there is to it.”
Barbara Kingsolver, The Bean Trees
“The very least you can do in your life is to figure out what you hope for. And the most you can do is live inside that hope. Not admire it from a distance but live right in it, under its roof. What I want is so simple I almost can’t say it: elementary kindness. Enough to eat, enough to go around. The possibility that kids might one day grow up to be neither the destroyers nor the destroyed. That’s about it. Right now I'm living in that hope, running down its hallway and touching the walls on both sides.”
Barbara Kingsolver, Animal Dreams
tags: hope
“Now I'm starting to think he wasn't supposed to be my whole life, he was just this doorway to me. ”
Barbara Kingsolver, Prodigal Summer
“The death of something living is the price of our own survival, and we pay it again and again. We have no choice. It is the one solemn promise every life on earth is born and bound to keep. ”
Barbara Kingsolver, The Poisonwood Bible
“Thanks for this day, for all birds safe in their nests, for whatever this is, for life.”
Barbara Kingsolver, Prodigal Summer


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