Truth and Beauty Quotes

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Truth and Beauty Truth and Beauty by Ann Patchett
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Truth and Beauty Quotes Showing 1-30 of 35
“Writing is a job, a talent, but it's also the place to go in your head. It is the imaginary friend you drink your tea with in the afternoon.”
Ann Patchett, Truth and Beauty
“I was starting to wonder if I was ready to be a writer, not someone who won prizes, got published and was given the time and space to work, but someone who wrote as a course of life. Maybe writing wouldn't have any rewards. Maybe the salvation I would gain through work would only be emotional and intellectual. Wouldn't that be enough, to be a waitress who found an hour or two hidden in every day to write?”
Ann Patchett, Truth And Beauty
“Whenever I saw her, I felt like I had been living in another country, doing moderately well in another language, and then she showed up speaking English and suddenly I could speak with all the complexity and nuance that I hadn't realized was gone. With Lucy I was a native speaker.”
Ann Patchett, Truth and Beauty
“shame should be reserved for the things we choose to do, not the circumstances that life puts on us”
Ann Patchett, Truth and Beauty
“That is one thing I've learned, that it is possible to really understand things at certain points, and not be able to retain them, to be in utter confusion just a short while later. I used to think that once you really knew a thing, its truth would shine on forever. Now it's pretty obvious to me that more often than not the batteries fade, and sometimes what you knew even goes out with a bang when you try to call on it, just like a lightbulb cracking off when you throw the switch.”
Ann Patchett, Truth and Beauty
“But it never worked that way, and the sex just made her lonelier. I understood that, as it had made me lonelier too. I could never remember being lonely, certainly not in this way, until I had seen the edge of the ways you could be with another person, which brought up all the myriad ways that person could never be there for you.”
Ann Patchett, Truth and Beauty
“Our friendship was like our writing in some ways. It was the only thing that was interesting about our otherwise dull lives. We were better off when we were together. Together we were a small society of ambition and high ideals. We were tender and patient and kind. We were not like the world at all.”
Ann Patchett, Truth and Beauty
“I will write my way into another life.”
Ann Patchett, Truth and Beauty
“To say it was a beautiful day would not begin to explain it. It was that day when the end of summer intersects perfectly with the start of fall .... [p.218 ff.]”
Ann Patchett, Truth and Beauty
“The thing you can count on in life is that Tennessee will always be scorching hot in August.”
Ann Patchett, Truth and Beauty
“Only now, as I'm typing this, have I realized the only thing I wasn't thinking of was how lonely I was. I guess I was my old self for awhile there, my better self. Lately I've been completely obsessed by my loneliness: it colors (note I didn't say colours) everything I see these past few weeks. It's okay to be lonely, I know that, but I don't like the way it's become the thing by which I measure everything else. I can't seem to try to not be lonely: it only seems to happen accidentally”
Ann Patchett, Truth and Beauty
“I do not remember our love unfolding, that we got to know one another and in time became friends. I only remember that she came through the door and it was there, huge and permanent and first.”
Ann Patchett, Truth and Beauty
“The process of putting the thing you value most in the world out for the assessment of strangers is a confidence-shaking business even in the best of times. But in Lucy's circumstances it was sheer heroism, a real sign of her devotion to her art. She was, in a sense, sitting at a craps table with her last stack of chips, trying again and again to hit it big.”
Ann Patchett, Truth and Beauty
“The process of putting the thing you value most in the world out for the assessment of strangers is a confidence-shaking business even in the best of times.”
Ann Patchett, Truth and Beauty
“Writing is a job, a talent, but it's also the place to go in your head. It is the imaginary friend you drink your tea with in the afternoon.”
Ann Patchett, Truth and Beauty
“I wrote the last sentence of The Patron Saint of Liars in early April and stumbled out of my apartment and into the beautiful spring feeling panicked and amazed. There is no single experience in my life as a writer to match that moment, the blue of the sky and the breeze drifting in from the bay. I had done the thing I had always wanted to do: I had written a book, all the way to the end. Even if it proved to be terrible, it was mine.”
Ann Patchett, Truth and Beauty
“But Lucy had been alone too much of her life, and in her loneliness she had constructed a vision of what a perfect relationship would look like. Love, in her imagination, was so dazzling, so tender and unconditional, that anything human seemed impossibly thin by comparison. Lucy's loneliness was breathtaking in its enormity...she was trapped in a room full of mirrors, and every direction she looked in she saw herself, her face, her loneliness. She couldn't see that no one else was perfect either, and that so much of love was the work of it. She had worked on everything else. Love would have to be charmed.”
Ann Patchett, Truth and Beauty
“I was never happier than on the nights we stayed home, lying on the living room rug. We talked about classes and poetry and politics and sex. Neither of us were in love with the Iowa Writers' Workshop, but it didn't really matter because we had no place else to go. What we had was the little home we made together, our life in the ugly green duplex. We lived next door to a single mother named Nancy Tate who was generous in all matters. She would drive us to the grocery store and give us menthol cigarettes and come over late at night after her son was asleep to sit in our kitchen and drink wine and talk about Hegel and Marx. Iowa City in the eighties was never going to be Paris in the twenties, but we gave it our best shot.”
Ann Patchett, Truth and Beauty
“They didn't account for Lucy, only for her face. And maybe they couldn't. She was too huge for casual consideration. But how can you operate on the face without understanding what the face means to the girl? How can the meaning of kissing, swallowing, speaking, be completely ignored in favor of mechanics?”
Ann Patchett, Truth and Beauty
“We shared ideas like sweaters, with easy exchange and lack of ownership.”
Ann Patchett, Truth and Beauty
“IT TAKES A certain amount of effort to be miserable and another kind of effort to be happy, and I was willing to do the work of happiness. I figured even if I couldn’t make Lucy deeply happy, I could very likely make her cheaply and immediately happy. I could provide the kind of happiness that would seem hollow if we had had the money or the time to stay in it too long. It was the same as carrying her. I couldn’t do it forever, but I could do it for a while. I booked Lucy a massage and had her eyelashes dyed. I took her for a pedicure. I bought her the best pâté I could find in Nashville along with Spaghetti-O’s and Hungry Jack biscuits and everything else I knew she liked. We went to a bad movie and then stayed for a second bad movie. I took her shopping and bought her whatever she wanted. And she was happy, and I was happy.”
Ann Patchett, Truth and Beauty
“At the time I thought this was my big chance for love, that I was going something very romantic and important, but looking back on it now, it all seems part of a very simple equation: I left the house where I lived with someone who loved me to go to the house of someone who did not love me at all.”
Ann Patchett, Truth and Beauty
tags: love
“But in that way life works, once I was off the hook it was easy to make the decision to go.”
Ann Patchett, Truth and Beauty
“We both had our first kiss from the same boy in college (a sainted and tender soul who must have made it his business to kiss the girls who would have otherwise graduated unkissed).”
Ann Patchett, Truth and Beauty
“GAWKING IS A LOOK stronger than a stare. The gawk was full of brazen curiosity, pity, and fear, every unattractive human emotion rolled into one unflattering facial expression.”
Ann Patchett, Truth and Beauty
“Does this raise or lower, then, the everyday importance of art? Does something which exists on the edge have no true relevance to the stable center, or does it, by being on the edge, become a part of the edge and thus a part of the boundary, the definition which gives the whole its shape? (excerpted letter from Lucy Grealy)”
Ann Patchett, Truth and Beauty
“The gawk was full of brazen curiousity, pity, and fear, every unattractive human emotion rolled into one unflattering facial expression.”
Ann Patchett, Truth and Beauty
“It's like a big circle. I've gone on a get-a-man crusade, but so far it's been a disaster and I'm feeling as bad about myself as I ever have. I know I'm a great person and all that, a good friend, but I feel like real bottom of the barrel girlfriend material.”
Ann Patchett, Truth and Beauty
“We set off walking backwards, thumbs out, trying to hitchhike to the postoperative breast augmentation appointment, perhaps a first in the state of Iowa.”
Ann Patchett, Truth and Beauty
tags: humor
“Lucy was invisible, exuberant, and utterly birdlike in her wild, darting freedom.”
Ann Patchett, Truth and Beauty

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