Repeating Quotes (displaying: 1 - 30 of 111 quotes )
And now the old story has begun to write itself over there," said Carl softly. "Isn’t it queer: there are only two or three human stories, and they go on repeating themselves as fiercely as if they had never happened before; like the larks in this country, that have been singing the same five notes for thousands of years.
Somewhere along the line Coltrane's soprano sax runs out of steam. Now it's McCoy Tyner's piano solo I hear, the left hand carving out a repetitious rhythm and the right layering on thick, forbidding chords. Like some mythic scene, the music portrays somebody's - a nameless, faceless somebody's - dim past, all the details laid out as clearly as entrails being dragged out of the darkness. Or at least that's how it sounds to me. The patient, repeating music ever so slowly breaks apart the real, rearranging the pieces. It has a hypnotic, menacing smell, just like the forest.
I used to listen to the monks repeating the Lord's Prayer; I wondered how they could continue to pray without misgiving to their heavenly father to give them their daily bread. Do children beseech their earthly father to give them sustenance? They expect him to do it, they neither feel gratitude to him for doing so nor need to, and we have only blame for a man who brings children into the world that he can't or won't provide for. It seemed to me that if an omnipotent creator was not prepared to provide for his creatures with the necessities, material and spiritual, of existence he'd have done better not to create them.
She survived it. She was able to survive it, because she did not believe in suffering. She faced with astonished indignation the ugly fact of feeling pain, and refused to let it matter. Suffering was a senseless accident, it was not part of life as she saw it. She would not allow pain to become important. She had no name for the kind of resistance she offered, for the emotion from which the resistance came; but the words that stood as its equivalent in her mind were: It does not count - it is not to be taken seriously. She knew these were the words, even in the moments when there was nothing left within her but screaming and she wished she could lose the faculty of consciousness so that it would not tell her that what could not be true was true. Not to be taken seriously - an immovable certainty within her kept repeating - pain and ugliness are never to be taken seriously.
Our hero's unreasoning rage was fed by a not unreasonable jealousy. It was clear to him that Zuleika had forgotten his existence. To-day, as soon as he had killed her love, she had shown him how much less to her was his love than the crowd's. And now again it was only the crowd she cared for. He followed with his eyes her long slender figure as she threaded her way in and out of the crowd, sinuously, confidingly, producing a penny from one lad's elbow, a threepenny-bit from between another's neck and collar, half a crown from another's hair, and always repeating in that flute-like voice of hers: "Well, this is rather queer!
If you should rise from Nowhere up to Somewhere, From being No one up to being Someone, Be sure to keep repeating to yourself You owe it to an arbitrary god Whose mercy to you rather than to others Won’t bear to critical examination. Stay unassuming. If for lack of license To wear the uniform of who you are, You should be tempted to make up for it In a subordinationg look or toe, Beware of coming too much to the surface And using for apparel hat was meant To be the curtain of the inmost soul.
I suspect gentlemen, that you're regarding me with pity; you keep repeating to me that an enlightened and cultured man -- such as, in short, as the man of the future will be -- cannot knowingly desire anything unprofitable for himself -- that that's mathematics. I agree totally that it really is mathematics. But I repeat to you for the hundredth time: there is only one case, only one, when a man can intentionally and consciously desire for himself even what is harmful and stupid, even what is extremely stupid: namely, in order to have the right to desire for himself even what is extremely stupid and not be constrained by the obligation to desire for himself only what is intelligent.
I think I should learn to get along better with people," he explained to Miss Benson one day, when she came upon him in the corridor of the literature building and asked what he was doing wearing a fraternity pledge pin (wearing it on the chest of the new V-neck pullover in which his mother said he looked so collegiate). Miss Benson's response to his proposed scheme for self-improvement was at once so profound and so simply put that Zuckerman went around for days repeating the simple interrogative sentence to himself; like Of Times and the River, it verified something he had known in his bones all along, but in which he could not placed his faith until it had been articulated by someone of indisputable moral prestige and purity : "Why," Caroline Benson asked the seventeen-year-old boy, "should you want to learn a thing like that?
Her pleasure in the walk must arise from the exercise and the day, from the view of the last smiles of the year upon the tawny leaves and withered hedges, and from repeating to herself some few of the thousand poetical descriptions extant of autumn--that season of peculiar and inexhaustible influence on the mind of taste and tenderness--that season which has drawn from every poet worthy of being read some attempt at description, or some lines of feeling.
For with my intuition I knew that this man was repeating a pattern over and over again: courting a woman with his intelligence and sympathy, claiming her emotionally; then, when she began to claim in return, running away. And the better a woman was, the sooner he would begin to run. I knew this with my intuition, and yet I sat there in my dark room, looking at the hazed wet brilliance of the purple London night sky, longing with my whole being.
All stories are about wolves. All worth repeating, that is. Anything else is sentimental drivel. All of them? Sure, he says. Think about it. There's escaping from the wolves, fighting the wolves, capturing the wolves, taming the wolves. Being thrown to the wolves, or throwing others to the wolves so the wolves will eat them instead of you. Running with the wolf pack. Turning into a wolf. Best of all, turning into the head wolf. No other decent stories exist.
Then he explains Chinese food in Manhattan to me: 'See the way it works is, there's one central location out on Long Island where all this stuff is made. Then it's piped into the city through a series of underground pipes that run parallel to the train and subway tracks. The restaurants then just pull a lever. One lever for General Tso's chicken, another for beef with broccoli sauce. It's like beer; it's on tap.' It's amazing how convincing he is when he says this. There's no pause in his description, nowhere for him to stop and think, to make this up as he goes along. It's as though he's simply repeating something he read in the Times yesterday. This makes me love him more than I did just five minutes ago.
Whatever inspiration is, it's born from a continuous "I don't know."...That is why I value that little phrase "I don't know" so highly. It's small, but it flies on mighty wings. It expands our lives to include spaces within us as well as the outer expanses in which our tiny Earth hangs suspended...Poets, if they're genuine, must always keep repeating "I don't know.
It spread out its wings, fitted them carefully into place again, ducked its head for a moment, as though making a sort of obeisance to the sun, and then began to pour forth a torrent of a song. In the afternoon hush the volume of sound was startling. Winston and Julia clung together, fascinated. The music went on and on, minute after minute, with astonishing variations, never once repeating itself, almost as though the bird were deliberately showing off its virtuosity ... For whom, for what, was that bird singing? No mate, no rival was watching it. What made it sit at the edge of the lonely wood and pour its music into nothingness?