Andre Dubus Quotes (displaying: 1 - 15 of 15 quotes)
Wanting to know absolutely what a story is about, and to be able to say it in a few sentences, is dangerous: it can lead us to wanting to possess a story as we possess a cup... A story can always break into pieces while it sits inside a book on a shelf; and, decades after we have read it even twenty times, it can open us up, by cut or caress, to a new truth.
The office was large, with many women and men at desks, and she learned their names, and presented to them an amiability she assumed upon entering the building. Often she felt that her smiles, and her feigned interest in people's anecdotes about commuting and complaints about colds, were an implicit and draining part of her job. A decade later she would know that spending time with people and being unable either to speak from her heart or to listen with it was an imperceptible bleeding of her spirit.
There were three of these women, separated by short intervals of pain, remorse, and despair. When he and the last one had their final quarrel - she threw the breadboard - he was nearly fifty-five, and he gave up on love, save the memory of it. Always his aim had been marriage. He had never entered what he considered to be an affair, something whose end was an understood condition of its beginning. But he had loved and wanted for the rest of his life women who took him in their arms, and even their hearts, but did not plan to keep him. He had known that about them, they had told him no lies about what they wanted, and he had persisted, keeping his faith: if he could not change their hearts, then love itself would.
When Jennifer was here in the summer, they were at the house most days. I would say generally that as they got older they became quieter, and though I enjoyed both, I sometimes missed the giggles and shouts. The quiet voices, just low enough for me not to hear from wherever I was, rising and failing in proportion to my distance from them, frightened me. Not that I believed they were planning or recounting anything really wicked, but there was a female seriousness about them, and it was secretive, and of course I thought: love, sex. But it was more than that: it was womanhood they were entering, the deep forest of it, and no matter how many women and men too are saying these days that there is little difference between us, the truth is that men find their way into that forest only on clearly marked trails, while women move about in it like birds. So hearing Jennifer and her friends talking so quietly, yet intensely, I wanted very much to have a wife.