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The Paris Review ...
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by Emily Nemens (Goodreads Author)
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Harold Brodkey
“Sometimes I can still sleep it off, my fear. My dreams are gentle now even when they are about being mugged, robbed and knocked down, even when I am pressing my car key into a bit of yielding earth. But often in the afternoons I wake after a nap with an awful sense of its being over and that it never meant much; I never had a life. The valuable sweetness and the hard work are infected by the fact of death: they no longer seem to have been so wonderful, but they are all I had. And then I want to be comforted. I want my old, unthreatening forms of silence, and comedy-and-cowardice. I want breath and stories and the world.”
Harold Brodkey, This Wild Darkness: The Story of My Death
tags: death, life

Elizabeth Bowen
“Looking back at a repetition of empty days, one sees that monuments have sprung up. Habit is not mere subjugation, it is a tender tie: when one remembers habit it seems to have been happiness.”
Elizabeth Bowen, The Death of the Heart

Arthur Schopenhauer
“The conviction that the world, and therefore man too, is something which really ought not to exist is in fact calculated to instil in us indulgence towards one another: for what can be expected of beings placed in such a situation as we are? From this point of view one might indeed consider that the appropriate form of address between man and man ought to be, not monsieur, sir, but fellow sufferer, compagnon de misères. However strange this may sound it corresponds to the nature of the case, makes us see other men in a true light and reminds us of what are the most necessary of all things: tolerance, patience, forbearance and charity, which each of us needs and which each of us therefore owes.”
Arthur Schopenhauer, Studies in Pessimism: The Essays

Flannery O'Connor
“I hope you understand that it is not the tooth of the saber-toothed tiger I want, it is the tiger. I don't care if it's a old toothless tiger or not, just so it's alive. I intend to start a zoo.”
Flannery O'Connor, The Habit of Being: Letters of Flannery O'Connor
tags: humor

James Salter
“Art, in a sense, is life brought to a standstill, rescued from time. The secret of making it is simple: discard everything that is good enough.”
James Salter, Burning the Days: Recollection

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