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Language in Literature > Amazing Sentences I Just Read II, the Sequel

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message 1: by Ken (new)

Ken | 18313 comments Mod
Old "Amazing Sentences" folder is now archived as it no longer signals new posts.

Begin anew here with the best and the brightest lines you come across while reading!

message 2: by Ruth (new)

Ruth | 15767 comments Mod
: “…winds to shake a dead rabbit's satchel of bones.” (Gary Soto)

message 3: by Joanne (new)

Joanne (bonfiggi) A man with a pierced ear is suitable for marriage. He has suffered pain, and bought jewelry.

I don't know the origin.

message 4: by Ken (new)

Ken | 18313 comments Mod
from "Orange" by Gary Soto, too

A few cars hissing past,
Fog hanging like old
Coats between the trees.
I took my girl’s hand
In mine for two blocks,
Then released it to let
Her unwrap the chocolate.
I peeled my orange
That was so bright against
The gray of December
That, from some distance,
Someone might have thought
I was making a fire in my hands.

message 5: by Ken (new)

Ken | 18313 comments Mod
"I rose and convulsed from the cold and retched from the poison. I looked over at the snow-covered golf course, where kids sledded every winter, and imagined the dead having sledding parties at midnight, on the back slope of the hill, warming their finger bones in blue fires that they kindled in granite urns, laughing when they held their hands inside the flames. I imagined them melting clumps of dirty ice in a tin bucket over the fire and drinking the hot muddy brew and cackling with glee as it ran off the backs of their jawbones and spattered down their ribs. I imagined them using headstones for sleds. The idea made me nauseated and I repented of it. I had the urge to go to Kate's stone and kneel in front of it and say, I'm sorry, over and over again, because no matter how much I knew better, I could not stop myself from stepping over the same dark threshold, night after night, trying to follow her into the country of the dead in order to fetch her back, even though she visited me in dreams and never left my waking thoughts."

-- Paul Harding
Enon by Paul Harding

message 6: by Mariab (last edited Jan 26, 2014 12:48PM) (new)

Mariab | 4 comments "When I turned the corner onto the garden path, she was there, sharp and knife-bright. A blue dress clung to her skin as if damp. Her dark eyes held mine, and her fingers, chill and unearthly pale, reached for me. My feet knocked against each other as she lifted me from the earth.
“I have seen,” she hissed. The sound of waves breaking on stone.
I could not speak. She held me by the throat.
“He is leaving.” Her eyes were black now, dark as sea-wet rocks, and as jagged."

The Song of Achilles, Madeline Miller

message 7: by Ruth (new)

Ruth | 15767 comments Mod

message 8: by Joanne (new)

Joanne (bonfiggi) Ruth wrote: "Nah."
What Ruth said.

message 9: by Raisa (last edited Jan 27, 2014 02:59AM) (new)

Raisa (peruser_01) | 1 comments "When it gets tangled, just tango on!"

message 10: by Ken (new)

Ken | 18313 comments Mod
For sea lovers, from Josep Pla's The Gray Notebook:

We launch Nuestra Senora del Carmen in the afternoon. My brother and I hoist the three-cornered mainsail and, with the help of a light southwesterly, head towards Aiguablava.

We find dolphins beyond the bay of Tamariu, playful, powerful dolphins that surge and leap. The dolphin is a beautiful fish to watch as it swims through water: even more so than tuna. Their strong surges as they speed along arrest the eye. If they cut across whitish, cloudy water and the sun is shining bright, the colloidal veneer covering them adds a glassy sheen and they are like glass fish snaking through the sea in zigzag streaks of lightning; if the water is deep and dark blue, they weave and wend, a vertiginous escape like mysterious, phantom shadows.

On a whim, they decide to race under our boat and almost hit the keel as they rush on with that blind, voracious enthusiasm of theirs. My brother, who wants to see them move even more quickly, bangs the tiller against the boat's side and we watch them dive and disappear vertically into the watery abyss.

-- pp. 168-169

message 11: by Gabi (new)

Gabi Fuller (CountryMouseMe) | 474 comments Beautiful.

message 12: by Ken (new)

Ken | 18313 comments Mod
"It has always been a happy thought to me that the creek runs on all night, new every minute, whether I wish it or know it or care, as a closed book on a shelf continues to whisper to itself its own inexhaustible tale."

-- Annie Dillard
Pilgrim at Tinker Creek

message 13: by Ruth (new)

Ruth | 15767 comments Mod
I loved that book.

message 14: by Ken (new)

Ken | 18313 comments Mod
I like how she shares interesting stuff she's read. Her Pliny anecdote inspired me to write the poem!

message 15: by Boreal Elizabeth (new)

Boreal Elizabeth | 401 comments thanks!

message 16: by [deleted user] (last edited Jan 08, 2016 11:56AM) (new)

"As a boy, I used to marvel that the letters in a closed book did not get scrambled and lost overnight." Jorge Luis Borges, The Aleph

Apparently a popular quote; as quoted in: The Word Exchange, which has this opening sentence: On a very cold and lonely Friday last November, my father disappeared from the Dictionary.

message 17: by Ken (new)

Ken | 18313 comments Mod
I like them both!

message 18: by Dave (new)

Dave Holmes (adh3) "Weary, resigned, occupied for several hours still with its immemorial task, the grey day stitched its shimmering needlework of light and shade, and it saddened me to think that I was to be left alone with a thing that knew me no more than would a seamstress who, installed by the window so as to see better while she finishes her work, pays no attention to the person present with her in the room." Marcel Proust Guermantes Way

message 19: by Ken (new)

Ken | 18313 comments Mod
Never read Proust.

message 20: by Dave (last edited Jan 21, 2016 07:16AM) (new)

Dave Holmes (adh3) Tried to get started several times without success. 2014 was my year of Proust. Proust book has a lot of prejudice and misunderstanding that has to be overcome to read it. This sentence is borrowed from an essay on Proust's sentences. Common on his longer sentences, the core of the sentence is in the middle "...I was to be left alone with a thing that knew me no more..." On each side are two clauses consisting a pair of twin "metaphoric clauses" (1 metaphor & 1 simile) and a pair "relationship clauses" (my terms).

So the sentence structure is ABCAB. The woman described in the simile is a description of a specific Vermeer painting (Vermeer and art play a significant part in the book.

The sentence is about the protagonist standing alone in his room feeling sorry for himself after being stood up on a blind date arranged by a friend who told him the woman in question was a "sure thing".

message 21: by [deleted user] (new)

The friend was a tout?

message 22: by Ken (last edited Jun 05, 2019 03:30PM) (new)

Ken | 18313 comments Mod
I'd like to get back to this. Maybe next book that speaks to me. If it speaks prettily, I'll share.

"You come too." (Robert Frost, "The Pasture")

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