Canadian Literature Quotes

Quotes tagged as "canadian-literature" (showing 1-16 of 16)
Cherie Dimaline
“She hated him, this man, and these men: the ones who picked her up without expression and used her without emotion. The ones who picked her up with no more regard than they had for picking lint off the collars of their well-pressed suits. She preferred the sweaty nervousness of young virgins or the eager speediness of excited old vets with their knobby fingers and waxy breath to these cold, hard men. These were the ones who called her squaw. Who called her half-breed, the ones who would just as soon slap her than bother to put on the condom she always handed them. She often wondered why they didn’t just keep the $80 it cost to be with her and drive their comfortable, bucket-seated SUVs home to the suburbs. They could kiss their wives hello and then slip into very hot showers to jerk off for free. Their peckish wives could spend the money they saved spending an afternoon getting the silk wraps and pedicures that would goad them into putting out anyways. To these men she had no name and no face. She was a hole. Consequently, she held no regard for these bastards. She gave them the calculated respect accorded to dangerous dogs.”
Cherie Dimaline, Red Rooms

George Elliott Clarke
“In school, I hated poetry - those skinny,
Malnourished poems that professors love;
The bad grammar and dirty words that catch
In the mouth like fishhooks, tear holes in speech.
Pablo, your words are rain I run through,
Grass I sleep in.”
George Elliott Clarke, Whylah Falls

Northrop Frye
“The traveler from Europe edges into it like a tiny Jonah entering an inconceivably large whale, slipping past the straits of Belle Isle into the Gulf of St. Lawrence, where five Canadian provinces surround him, for the most part invisible. Then he goes up the St. Lawrence and the inhabited country comes into view, mainly a French-speaking country with its own cultural traditions. To enter the United States is a matter of crossing an ocean; to enter Canada is a matter of being silently swallowed by an alien continent.”
Northrop Frye, The Bush Garden

George Elliott Clarke
“The moon twangs its silver strings;
The river swoons into town;
The wind beds down in the pines,
Covers itself with stars.”
George Elliott Clarke, Whylah Falls

George Elliott Clarke
“A rural Venus, Selah rises from the
gold foliage of the Sixhiboux River, sweeps
petals of water from her skin. At once,
clouds begin to sob for such beauty.
Clothing drops like leaves.

"No one makes poetry,my Mme.
Butterfly, my Carmen, in Whylah,”
I whisper. She smiles: “We’ll shape it with
our souls.”

Desire illuminates the dark manuscript
of our skin with beetles and butterflies.
After the lightning and rain has ceased,
after the lightning and rain of lovemaking
has ceased, Selah will dive again into the
sunflower-open river.”
George Elliott Clarke, Whylah Falls

Mordecai Richler
“The truth is Canada is a cloud-cuckoo-land, an insufferably rich country governed by idiots, its self-made problems offering comic relief to the ills of the real world out there, where famine and racial strife and vandals in office are the unhappy rule.”
Mordecai Richler, Barney's Version

Ethel Wilson
“What a land. What power these rivers were already yielding, far beyond her sight. Even a map of this country--lines arranged in an arbitrary way on a long rectangular piece of paper-- stirs the imagination beyond imagination, she thought, looking at the map, as other lines differently arranged in relation to each other have not the power to stir. Each name on the map says "We reached this point, by broken trail and mountains and water; and when we reached it, thus and thus we named it.”
Ethel Wilson

J.C. Villamere
“We build this country ourselves every day and we have to be, in the most positive sense, totally unreal.”
J.C. Villamere, Is Canada Even Real?: How a Nation Built on Hobos, Beavers, Weirdos, and Hip Hop Convinced the World to Beliebe

Steve Vernon
“My first jailbreak began when a coarse-toothed mechanic’s file crashed through the window of the Deeper Harbour Police
Station at two in the morning. The file bounced three or four times before clattering to a halt among a scatter of shattered glass. The file spun a little and came to rest, like a compass needle pointing somewhere far off the edge of the map. Looking back from right here and right now I believe I would like to start this story right then—three days after I had just turned fourteen—spending my birthday in jail. - SINKING DEEPER”
Steve Vernon

Miriam Toews
“Stuff was happening. Even in Half-a-Life. Little things, but it all added up to something big. To our lives. It was happening all along. These were our lives. This was it. My mom was hanging onto the lives, the recorded lives, of these women. We might escape, but what if we didn't? What if we lived in Half-a-Life all our lives, poor, lonely, proud, happy? If we did, we did. These were our lives. If we couldn't escape them, we'd have to live them.”
Miriam Toews, Summer of My Amazing Luck

J.M. Lavallee
“You know, Dorothy, you can’t let people bring you down so easily or you’ll have your nose in the dirt for the rest of your life. From what I make of it, for every person with a good thought, there are about fifty who’d try to spoil it. We have to guard our good ideas, our happy thoughts, and fight for them. Because if we let those others snuff them out, well, we didn’t after all deserve them.”
J.M. Lavallee, The Wishing Stone and Other Myths Learned on Gull Cliff Island

Lynn Coady
“She comes to naught, my dear one, she comes to naught, all that there business. What the hell, maybe twice in your life you have yourself a whore of a good time, and then you spend every night of the rest of your life trying to get that good time back. But she comes to naught.”
Lynn Coady, Strange Heaven

Tamara Faith Berger
“But maybe when you never say a thing, your thoughts spread like mould.”
Tamara Faith Berger, Little Cat

Spencer Gordon
“All the things she couldn’t say, the things no one wanted to hear.”
Spencer Gordon, Cosmo

Helen Humphreys
“I don't think any more that my life is about what has happened to me. It's about what I choose to believe. It's not what I can see, but what I think is out there.

And in the end, this end, here is what I believe.
The heart is a wild and fugitive creature.
The heart is a dog who comes home.”
Helen Humphreys, Wild Dogs

“If I had had a daughter, I always knew what I would tell her. First of all, I would try to counter all outdated stereotypical claptrap that girls are commonly told about their sex--that women are valued far more for their sexual characteristics than their character and brains--and encourage her to be a truly independent person. Only knowing who she is herself will she be able to find find her own life's work and make good decisions in choosing a partner and having children.”
Doris Anderson, Rebel Daughter : An Autobiography

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