Quotes About Small Towns

Quotes tagged as "small-towns" (showing 1-30 of 36)
G.K. Chesterton
“The man who lives in a small community lives in a much larger world. He knows much more of the fierce variety and uncompromising divergences of men…In a large community, we can choose our companions. In a small community, our companions are chosen for us. Thus in all extensive and highly civilized society groups come into existence founded upon sympathy, and shut out the real world more sharply than the gates of a monastery. There is nothing really narrow about the clan; the thing which is really narrow is the clique.”
G.K. Chesterton, Heretics

W.B. Yeats
“In the great cities we see so little of the world, we drift into our minority. In the little towns and villages there are no minorities; people are not numerous enough. You must see the world there, perforce. Every man is himself a class; every hour carries its new challenge. When you pass the inn at the end of the village you leave your favourite whimsy behind you; for you will meet no one who can share it. We listen to eloquent speaking, read books and write them, settle all the affairs of the universe. The dumb village multitudes pass on unchanging; the feel of the spade in the hand is no different for all our talk: good seasons and bad follow each other as of old. The dumb multitudes are no more concerned with us than is the old horse peering through the rusty gate of the village pound. The ancient map-makers wrote across unexplored regions, 'Here are lions.' Across the villages of fishermen and turners of the earth, so different are these from us, we can write but one line that is certain, 'Here are ghosts.' ("Village Ghosts")”
W.B. Yeats, The Celtic Twilight: Faerie and Folklore

Edward Abbey
“One of the pleasant things about small town life is that everyone, whether rich or poor, liked or disliked, has some kind of a role and place in the community. I never felt that living in a city -- as I once did for a couple of years.”
Edward Abbey, Postcards from Ed: Dispatches and Salvos from an American Iconoclast

Molly Harper
“There was not a lot of room for someone like me, who kept the gossip mill running like a hamster wheel.”
Molly Harper, Driving Mr. Dead

Roxane Gay
“I was too smart and that made people uncomfortable--most folks where we've lived our whole lives don't trust too much intelligence in a woman. There is also the problem of my eyes--they don't hide anything. If I don't care for a person, my eyes make it plain. I don't care for most. Folks are generally comfortable with the small lies they tell each other. They don't know what to do with someone like me, who mostly doesn't bother with small lies.”
Roxane Gay, Difficult Women

M.L. Stedman
“The town draws a veil over certain events. This is a small community where everyone knows that sometimes the contract to forget is as important as any promise to remember. Children can grow up having no knowledge of the indiscretion of their father in his youth or the illegitimate sibling who lives fifty miles away and bears another man’s name. History is that which is agreed upon by mutual consent. That’s how life goes on; protected by the silence that anaesthetises shame.”
M.L. Stedman, The Light Between Oceans

Peter Straub
“It was incomprehensible to Ricky that anyone could find Milburn boring: if you watched it closely for seventy years, you saw the century at work.”
Peter Straub

Beryl Markham
“(This place) presumed to be a town then, but was hardly more than a word under a tin roof.”
Beryl Markham, West with the Night

Shannon Celebi
“It wasn’t as if she’d thought it through or anything, how what a person wanted wasn’t always what they needed, and what a person needed might be the last thing they could ever want.”
Shannon Celebi, Small Town Demons

Phil Volatile
“And somewhere
out there,
in the river of
addicts,
alcoholics,
wife beaters,
doormats,
overeducated legalized thieves,
fascist police,
and bitter rivalries—
someone told me
it’s a good city,
and I don’t know
what’s more frightening”
Phil Volatile, White Wedding Lies, and Discontent: An American Love Story

Agatha Christie
“Nothing, I believe, is so full of life under the microscope as a drop of water from a stagnant pool.”
Agatha Christie, Murder at the Vicarage

Ashly Lorenzana
“In some ways, forcing me to leave was the best thing that could have happened to me. In other ways, it was a disaster. I'm still glad they did it though, because I think I might have just died if I had stayed at the coast. Although I ended up there a couple years later, when my mother relapsed on a whim, I think I needed that two years away from that horrible little coastal town where time is frozen and ideas creep forward too slow to notice any progress.”
Ashly Lorenzana, Speed Needles

Sonya Hartnett
“A small town is nothing but eyes and gaping maw; it pecks at its own like a flock of vicious birds.”
Sonya Hartnett, Surrender

Sonya Hartnett
“A small town has as many eyes as a fly”
Sonya Hartnett, Surrender

R.A. Mathis
“There may be no secrets in small towns, but there are no strangers either.”
R.A. Mathis, Falling Down: Part 1 of the Homeland Series

Beryl Markham
“(This town) doesn't look like anything; it isn't anything. Its five tin-roofed huts cling to the skinny tracks of the Uganda Railway like parasites on a vine.”
Beryl Markham, West with the Night

Alice Clayton
“Over the next few days, every knowing glance and furtive look reminded me how much small towns loved to gossip. My mother delighted me each day by telling me what she’d heard. I’d pushed Leo behind a snap pea display at the farmers’ market and wrestled him to the ground. I’d offered him my bagel repeatedly, refusing to take no for an answer. I’d been seen out behind the market, helping him load up his vegetables and been caught holding his cucumber. That was my favorite.”
Alice Clayton, Nuts

Val McDermid
“Admittedly, they [(places in novels)] didn't all have such ridiculous names as the ones in the Piddle Valley where her father's group of parishes was centered. It would have been hard to make credible a romantic fiction set in Farleigh Piddle, Middle Piddle, Nether Piddle and Piddle Dummer.”
Val McDermid, Northanger Abbey

Dan Simmons
“Crawford reacted in the fashion of small towns immemorial – some tongues wagged constantly, some people could not keep the pity and pleasure at someone else’s misfortune out of their voices and gazes – but mostly the community folded its protective wings around the Weintraub family like an awkward mother bird shielding its young”
Dan Simmons, Hyperion

“Take a detour.
Discover small towns
and friendly faces
that don't grow along the highway.”
Khang Kijarro Nguyen

Helen Grant
“My life might have been so different, had I not been known as the girl whose grandmother exploded. And had I not been born in Bad Munstereifel. If we had lived in the city -- well, I"m not saying the event would have gone unnoticed, but the fuss would probably only have lasted a week before public interest moved elsewhere. Besides, in a city you are anonymous; the chances of being picked out as Kristel Kolvenbach's granddaughter would be virtually zero. But in a small town -- well, small towns everywhere are rife with gossip, but in Germany they raise it to an art form.”
Helen Grant, The Vanishing of Katharina Linden

Christopher Byford
“As usual, small towns like this were full of those who needed entertainment and whilst money was difficult to earn, the philosophy of giving the people what they wanted, which Franco lived by, had paid dividends.”
Christopher Byford, Den of Shadows

Gayle Forman
“The talks were like blood transfusions, moments of realness and hope that were pinpricks of light in the dark fabric of small-town life.”
Gayle Forman, I Was Here

Kathleen Norris
“Change is still resented on the Plains, so much so much so that many small-town people cling to the dangerous notion that while the world outside may change drastically, their town does not...
... when myth dictates that the town has not really changed, ways of adapting to new social and economic conditions are rejected: not vigorously, but with a strangely resolute inertia...
Combatting inertia in a town such as Lemmon can seem like raising the dead. It is painful to watch intelligent business people who are dedicated to the welfare of the town spend most of their energy combatting those more set in their ways. Community spirit can still work wonders here - people raised over $500,000 in the hard times of the late 1980s to keep the Lemmon nursing home open...
By the time a town is 75 or 100 years old, it may be filled with those who have come to idealize their isolation. Often these are people who never left at all, or fled back to the safety of the town after a try at college a few hundred miles from home, or returned after college regarding the values of the broader, more pluralistic world they had encountered as something to protect themselves and their families from...
More than ever, I've come to see conspiracy theories as the refuge of those who have lost their natural curiosity to cope with change.”
Kathleen Norris, Dakota: A Spiritual Geography

Kathleen Norris
“By the time a town is 75 or 100 years old, it may be filled with those who have come to idealize their isolation. Often these are people who never left at all, or fled back to the safety of the town after a try at college a few hundred miles from home, or returned after college regarding the values of the broader, more pluralistic world they had encountered as something to protect themselves and their families from...”
Kathleen Norris, Dakota: A Spiritual Geography

Kathleen Norris
“More than ever, I've come to see conspiracy theories as the refuge of those who have lost their natural curiosity to cope with change.”
Kathleen Norris, Dakota: A Spiritual Geography

“If social cohesion is one of the good things about growing up in a small town, the downside is the unchallengeable power of cliques. That sort of thing is in the nature of the teenage beast, but in bigger towns and cities there are usually so many different social groups within a single school or locality that most kids can find others they feel comfortable with. Not so in a small town. If you don't conform, even at the cost of sacrificing your principles and self-respect, you will be an outcast. And if you have a sensitive nature, it will mark you for life.”
Sela Ward

Robert Jackson Bennett
“Wink? she thinks. Where the fuck is Wink?”
Robert Jackson Bennett, American Elsewhere

Keith Lesmeister
“Alice's mother used to host wild edible classes that would attract a lot of people, but this was a small town and once you teach those interested few everything you know, then there's no one left to teach. It becomes, after a while, a strategy for convincing others that your way of life is important.”
Keith Lesmeister, We Could've Been Happy Here

Jaime Allison Parker
“She wondered how many towns like this existed all over the country?Bucolic scenery on the outside, with its own private soap operas, gossips and hells on the inside. She wondered if the suburbs in huge cities were merely a collection of small towns, piled on top of each other and each place was ultimately the same. The thought struck her as exceedingly depressing. However, her spirits were not in their best shape.”
Jaime Allison Parker

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