Siren Quotes (displaying: 1 - 30 of 44 quotes )
Siren Song This is the one song everyone would like to learn: the song that is irresistible: the song that forces men to leap overboard in squadrons even though they see beached skulls the song nobody knows because anyone who had heard it is dead, and the others can’t remember. Shall I tell you the secret and if I do, will you get me out of this bird suit? I don’t enjoy it here squatting on this island looking picturesque and mythical with these two feathery maniacs, I don’t enjoy singing this trio, fatal and valuable. I will tell the secret to you, to you, only to you. Come closer. This song is a cry for help: Help me! Only you, only you can, you are unique at last. Alas it is a boring song but it works every time.
This is nine! Nine! This is nine! Nine! This is ten! Ten! We have killed your friends! Every friend is now dead! This is six! Six!"[...]"Eighteen! This is now eighteen! Take cover when the siren sounds! This is four! Four!"[...]"Five! This is five! Ignore the siren! Even if you leave this room, you can never leave this room! Eight! This is eight!"[...]"Six!' the phone screamed. 'Six, this is six, this is goddam fucking SIX!
I will be the first. As of tonight, I renounce my citizenship in the United Nations, and my allegiance to the Shelter state. From now on I will be a citizen--a citizen of no country but that bounded by the limits of my own mind. I do not know what those limits are, and I may never find out, but I shall devote my life to searching for them, in whatever manner seems good to me, and in no other manner whatsoever. You must do the same. Tear up your registration cards. If you are asked your serial number, tell them you never had one. Never fill in another form. Stay above ground when the siren sounds. Stake out plots; grow crops; abandon the corridors. Do not commit any violence; simply refuse to obey. Nobody has the. right to compel you, as non-citizens. Passivity is the key. Renounce, resist, deny!
First she said we were to keep clear of the Sirens, who sit and sing most beautifully in a field of flowers; but she said I might hear them myself so long as no one else did. Therefore, take me and bind me to the crosspiece half way up the mast; bind me as I stand upright, with a bond so fast that I cannot possibly break away, and lash the rope's ends to the mast itself. If I beg and pray you to set me free, then bind me more tightly still.
It is natural for man to indulge in the illusions of hope and pride. We are apt to shut our eyes against a painful truth, and listen to the song of that siren till she transforms us into beasts. Is this the part of wise men, engaged in a great and arduous struggle for liberty? Are we disposed to be the number of those who, having eyes, see not, and having ears, hear not, the things which so nearly concern their temporal salvation? For my part, whatever anguish of spirit it may cost, I am willing to know the whole truth; to know the worst, and to provide for it.
Even now I'm well aware that if I allowed myself to listen to him I couldn't resist but would have the same experience again. He makes me admit that, in spite of my great defects, I neglect myself and instead get involved in Athenian politics. So I force myself to block my ears and go away, like someone escaping from the Sirens, to prevent myself sitting there beside him till I grow old.
I worry that, especially as the Millennium edges nearer, pseudoscience and superstition will seem year by year more tempting, the siren song of unreason more sonorous and attractive. Where have we heard it before? Whenever our ethnic or national prejudices are aroused, in times of scarcity, during challenges to national self-esteem or nerve, when we agonize about our diminished cosmic place and purpose, or when fanaticism is bubbling up around us - then, habits of thought familiar from ages past reach for the controls. The candle flame gutters. Its little pool of light trembles. Darkness gathers. The demons begin to stir.
Abroad, she discovered that the transformation of music into noise was a planetary process by which mankind was entering the historical phase of total ugliness. The total ugliness to come had made itself felt first as omnipresent acoustical ugliness: cars, motorcycles, electric guitars, drills, loudspeakers, sirens. The omnipresence of visual ugliness would soon follow.
I drank a little California Mountain Red at home and thought--why not--wherever you turn someone is shouting give me liberty of I give you death. Perfectly sensible, thing-owning, Church-fearing neighbours flop their hands over their ears at the sound of a siren to keep fallout from taking hold of their internal organs. You have to be cockeyed to love, and blind in order to look out the window at your own ice-cold street.
But if she'd come then, she would never have properly appreciated it. She'd have seen the happy crowds and the Union Jacks and the bonfires, but she'd have no idea of what it meant to see the lights on after years of navigating in the dark, what it meant to look up at an approaching plane without fear, to hear church bells after years of air-raid sirens. She'd have had no idea of the years of rationing and shabby clothes and fear which lay behind the smiles and the cheering, no idea of what it had cost to bring this day to pass--the lives of all those soldiers and sailors and airmen and civilians.
The Gedalists were nearly run down by a Dodge truck on which two grand pianos had been loaded: two uniformed officers were playing, in unison, with gravity and commitment, the 1812 Overture of Tchaikowsky, while the driver wove among the wagons with brusque swerves, pressing the siren at full volume, heedless of the pedestrians in his way.
In me was shaping a yearning for a kind of consciousness, a mode of being that the way of life about me had said could not be, must not be, and upon which the penalty of death had been placed. Somewhere in the dead of the southern night my life had switched onto the wrong track and without my knowing it, the locomotive of my heart was rushing down a dangerously steep slope, heading for a collision, heedless of the warning red lights that blinked all about me, the sirens and the ells and the screams that filled the air.
...for the first time in my life, a voice went off in my head:'You have no power over what happens in your life. Drugs dictate exactly what you're going to do. You've taken your hands off the steering wheel, and you're going wherever the drug world takes you.'That had never changed. The feeling would well up inside of me, and no matter how much I loved my girl or my band or my friends or my family, when that siren song 'Go get high now' started playing in my head, I was off.
I have graded my separate works from A to D. The grades I hand out to myself do not place me in literary history. I am comparing myself with myself. Thus can I give myself an A-plus for Cat’s Crade, while knowing that there was a writer named William Shakespeare. The report card is chronological, so you can plot my rise and fall on graph paper, if you like: Player Piano B The Sirens of Titan A Mother Night A Cat’s Cradle A-plus God Bless You, Mr. Rosewater A Slaughterhouse-Five A-plus Welcome to the Monkey House B-minus Happy Birthday, Wanda June D Breakfast of Champions C Wampeters, Foma & Grandfalloons C Slapstick D Jailbird A Palm Sunday C
She has the sort of body you go to see in marble. She has golden hair. Quickly, deftly, she reaches with both hands behind her back and unclasps her top. Setting it on her lap, she swivels ninety degrees to face the towboat square. Shoulders back, cheeks high, she holds her pose without retreat. In her ample presentation there is defiance of gravity. There is no angle of repose. She is a siren and these are her songs.
Except for the sound of the rain, on the road, on the roofs, on the umbrella, there was absolute silence: only the dying moan of the sirens continued for a moment or two to vibrate within the ear. It seemed to Scobie later that this was the ultimate border he had reached in happiness: being in darkness, alone, with the rain falling, without love or pity.
Give up on me " he begged her. "I don't like people dropping in to see me without warning, I have forgotten the rules of seven tiles and kabaddi, I can't recite my prayers, I don't know what should happen at a nikah ceremony, and in this city where I grew up I get lost if I'm on my own. This isn't home. It makes me giddy because it feels like home and is not. It makes my heart tremble and my head spin."You're a stupid, " she shouted at him. "A stupid. Change back! Damn fool! Of course you can." She was a vortex, a siren, tempting him back to his old self. But it was a dead self, a shadow, a ghost and he would not become a phantom. There was a return ticket to London in his wallet, and he was going to use it.
And nevertheless I have loved certain of my masters, and those strangely intimate though elusive relations existing between student and teacher, and the Sirens singing somewhere within the cracked voice of him who is first to reveal a new idea. The greatest seducer was not Alcibiades, afterall, it was Socrates.
Reality is the strip malls of Burbank, the smokestacks of Cleveland, a parking garage in Newark. Fantasy is the towers of Minas Tirith, the ancient stones of Gormenghast, the halls of Camelot. Fantasy flies on the wings of Icarus, reality on Southwest Airlines. Why do our dreams become so much smaller when they finally come true? We read fantasy to find the colors again, I think. To taste strong spices and hear the songs the sirens sang. There is something old and true in fantasy that speaks to something deep within us, to the child who dreamt that one day he would hunt the forests of the night, and feast beneath the hollow hills, and find a love to last forever somewhere south of Oz and north of Shangri-La. They can keep their heaven. When I die, I'd sooner go to Middle Earth.