Bird's Quotes (displaying: 1 - 30 of 245 quotes )
Whether by chance conjunction or not, the “wind-up bird” was a powerful presence in Cinnamon’s story. The cry of this bird was audible only to certain special people, who were guided by it toward inescapable ruin. The will of human beings meant nothing, then, as the veterinarian always seemed to feel. People were no more than dolls set on tabletops, the springs in their backs wound up tight, dolls set to move in ways they could not choose, moving in directions they could not choose. Nearly all within range of the wind-up bird’s cry were ruined, lost. Most of them died, plunging over the edge of the table.
There is some of the same fitness in a man's building his own house that there is in a bird's building its own nest. Who knows but if men constructed their dwellings with their own hands, and provided food for themselves and families simply and honestly enough, the poetic faculty would be universally developed, as birds universally sing when they are so engaged? But alas! we do like cowbirds and cuckoos, which lay their eggs in nests which other birds have built, and cheer no traveller with their chattering and unmusical notes. Shall we forever resign the pleasure of construction to the carpenter?
The bird looked much smaller dead than alive. Jody felt a little mean pain in his stomach, so he took out his pocketknife and cut off the bird's head. Then he disemboweled it, and took off its wings; and finally he threw all the pieces into the brush. He didn't care about the bird, or its life, but he knew what older people would say if they had seen him kill it; he was ashamed because of their potential opinion.
Dru: "I'll give you a seed if you sing..." Spike: "The bird's dead, Dru. You left it in the cage, and you didn't feed it, and now it's all dead, just like the last one. Dru pouts Oh, I'm sorry, baby. I'm a bad rude man. I just don't like you going out and all. You are weak. Would you like a new bird? One that's not dead?
In exchange for his first taste of powdered milk, Pascal showed me a tree we could climb to find a bird's nest. After we handled and examined the pink-skinned baby birds, he popped one of them into his mouth like a jujube. It seemed to please him a lot. He offered a baby bird to me, pantomiming that I should eat it. I understood perfectly well what he meant, but I refused. He did not seem disappointed to have to eat the whole brood himself.
After this, I couldn't hear their voices any longer; for in my ears I heard a sound like a bird's wings flapping in panic. Perhaps it was my heart, I don't know. But if you've ever seen a bird trapped inside the great hall of a temple, looking for some way out, well, that was how my mind was reacting. It had never occurred to me that my mother wouldn't simply go on being sick. I won't say I'd never wondered what might happen if she should die; I did wonder about it, in the same way I wondered what might happen if our house were swallowed up in an earthquake. There could hardly be life after such an event.
Is there a more pitiable spectacle than that of a wife contending with others for that charm in her husband's sight which no philters and no prayers can renew when once it has fled forever? Women are so unwise. Love is like a bird's song beautiful and eloquent when heard in forest freedom, harsh and worthless in repetition when sung from behind prison bars. You cannot secure love by vigilance, by environment, by captivity. What use is it to keep the person of a man beside you if his soul be truant from you?
In a lifetime of hearing people celebrate weekends, she finally saw what all the fuss was about. By no means did her workload cease on Saturday, but it did shift gears. If her kids wanted to pull everything out of the laundry basket to make a bird's nest and sit in it, fine. Dellarobia could even sit in there with them and incubate, if she so desired. Household chores no longer called her name exclusively. She had an income. She'd never before understood how much her life in this little house had felt to her like confinement in a sinking vehicle after driving off a bridge. ..... To open a hatch and swim away felt miraculous. Working outside the home took her about fifty yards from her kitchen, which was far enough. She couldn't see the dishes in the sink.
Truthfully, other than getting lucky back in Lotus and some street girls in Kentucky, I've had only two regular women. I liked the small breakable thing inside each one. Whatever their personality, smarts, or looks, something soft lay inside each. Like a bird's breastbone, shaped and chosen to wish on. A little V, thinner than bone and lightly hinged, that I could break with a forefinger if I wanted to, but never did. Want to, I mean. Knowing it was there, hidden from me, was enough. It was the third woman who changed eveyrthing. In her company the little wishbone V took up residence in my own chest and made itself at home. It was her forefinger that kept me on edge.
Birds are and always have been reincarnated old men with Tourette's syndrome having somehow managed to dupe the reproductive saga. They fuck each other and tend to their home repairs and children while never missing their true mission. To scream at the top of their lungs in horrified hellish rage every morning at daybreak to warn us all of the truth. They know the truth. Screaming bloody murder all over the world in our ears, but sadly we don't speak bird.
Birds and periodic blood. Old recapitulations. The fox, panting, fire-eyed, gone to earth in my chest. How beautiful we are, he and I, with our auburn pelts, our trails of blood, our miracle escapes, our whiplash panic flogging us on to new miracles! They’ve supplied us with pills for bleeding, pills for panic. Wash them down the sink. This is truth, then: dull needle groping for the spinal fluid, weak acid in the bottom of the cup, foreboding, foreboding. No one tells the truth about truth, that it’s what the fox sees from his scuffled burrow: dull-jawed, onrushing killer, being that inanely single-minded will have our skins at last.
The black bird cocked its head to one side, and then said, in a voice like stones being struck, 'You shadow man.' I'm Shadow,' said Shadow. The bird hopped up onto the fawn's rump, raised its head, ruffled its crown and neck feathers. It was enormous and its eyes were black beads. There was something intimidating about a bird that size, this close. Says he will see you in Kay-ro.' tokked the raven. Shadow wondered which of Odin's ravens this was: Huginn or Munnin, Memory or Thought. Kay-ro?' he asked. In Egypt.' How am I going to go to Egypt?' Follow Mississippi. Go south. Find Jackal.' Look,' said Shadow, 'I don't want to seem like I'm-- Jesus, look...' he paused. Regrouped. He was cold, standing in a wood, talking to a big black bird who was currently brunching on Bambi. 'Okay. What I'm trying to say is I don't want mysteries.' Mysteries,' agreed the bird helpfully. What I want is explanations. Jackal in Kay-ro. This does not help me. It's a line from a bad spy thriller.
About novel Imperfect Birds by Anne Lamott.Q: What does the title "Imperfect Birds" mean?It's a line from a poem by Rumi. The line is "Each must enter the nest made by the other imperfect birds", and it's really about how these kind of scraggly, raggedy nests that are our lives are the sanctuary for other people to step into, and that if you want to see the divine, you really step into the absolute ordinary. When you're at your absolutely most lost and dejected ... where do you go? You go to the nests left by other imperfect birds, you find other people who've gone through it. You find the few people you can talk to about it.from Writer's Digest May/June 2010
Thirty years ago my older brother, who was ten years old at the time, was trying to get a report written on birds that he'd had three months to write, which was due the next day. We were out at our family cabin in Bolinas, and he was at the kitchen table close to tears, surrounded by binder paper and pencils and unopened books about birds, immobilized by the hugeness of the task ahead. Then my father sat down beside him put his arm around my brother's shoulder, and said, "Bird by bird, buddy. Just take it bird by bird.
Can I be honest with you, Mr. Wind-Up Bird? I mean, really, really, really honest? Sometimes I get sooo scared! I’ll wake up in the middle of the night all alone, hundreds of miles away from anybody, and it’s pitch dark, and I have absolutely no idea what’s going to happen to me in the future, and I get so scared I want to scream. Does that happen to you, Mr. Wind-Up Bird? When it happens, I try to remind myself that I am connected to others—other things and other people. I work as hard as I can to list their names in my head. On that list, of course, is you, Mr. Wind-Up Bird. And the alley, and the well, and the persimmon tree, and that kind of thing. And the wigs that I’ve made here with my own hands. And the little bits and pieces I remember about the boy. All these little things (though you’re not just another one of those little things, Mr. Wind-Up Bird, but anyhow…) help me to come back “here” little by little.
Today the tower's flock, the usual birds, flew in a kind of scatter pattern, their paths intricately chaotic, the bunch parting and interweaving like boiling pasta under a pot's lifted lid. It appeared someone had given the birds new instructions, had whispered that there was something to avoid, or someone to fool. I once heard Perkus Tooth say that he'd woken that morning having dreamed an enigmatic sentence: "Paranoia is a flower in the brain." Perkus offered this, then smirked and bugged his eyes--the ordinary eye, and the other. I played at amazement (I was amazed, anyway, at the fact that Perkus dreamed sentences to begin with). Yet I hadn't understood what the words meant to him until now, when I knew for a crucial instant that the birds had been directed to deceive me. That was when I saw the brain's flower. Perkus had, I think, been trying to prepare me for how beautiful it was.
There are people,' he said, 'who give, and there are people who take. There are people who create, people who destroy, and people who don't do anything and drive the other two kinds crazy. It's born in you, whether you give or take, and that's the way you are. Ravens bring things to people. We're like that. It's our nature. We don't like it. We'd much rather be eagles, or swans, or even one of those moronic robins, but we're ravens and there you are. Ravens don't feel right without somebody to bring things to, and when we do find somebody we realize what a silly business it was in the first place." He made a sound between a chuckle and a cough. "Ravens are pretty neurotic birds. We're closer to people than any other bird, and we're bound to them all our lives, but we don't have to like them. You think we brought Elijah food because we liked him? He was an old man with a dirty beard.