Unwillingly Quotes (displaying: 1 - 16 of 16 quotes )
The incessant anxiety and strain of some is a well-nigh incurable form of disease. We are made to exaggerate the importance of what work we do...How vigilant we are! determined not live by faith if we can avoid it; all the day long on the alert, at night we unwillingly say our prayers and commit ourselves to uncertainties.
Snapping shut his mobile, Dalgliesh reflected that murder, a unique crime for which no reparation is ever possible, imposes it own compulsions as well as it's conventions. He doubted whether Macklefield [the murder victim's Will attorney] would have interrupted his country weekend for a less sensational crime. As a young officer he, too, had been touched, if unwillingly and temporarily, by the power of murder to attract even while it appalled and repelled. He had watched how people involved as innocent bystanders, provided they were unburdened by grief or suspicion, were engrossed by homicide, drawn inexorably to the place where the crime had occurred in fascinated disbelief. The crowd and the media who served them had not yet congregated outside the wrought-iron gates of the Manor. But they would come, and he doubted whether Chandler-Powell's [owner of the Manor where the murder was committed] private security team would be able to do more than inconvenience them.
And he thought about the Devil, in whom he did not believe, and he looked around at the two windows where the fires were gleaming. It seemed to him that out of those crimson eyes the Devil himself was looking at him--that unknown force that had created the mutual relation of the strong and the weak, that coarse blunder which one could never correct. That strong must hinder the weak from living--such was the law of Nature; but only in a newspaper article or in a schoolbook was that intelligible and easily accepted. In the hotchpotch which was everyday life, in the tangle of trivialities out of which human relations were woven, it was no longer a law, but a logical absurdity, when the strong and the weak were both equally victims of their mutual relations, unwillingly submitting to some directing force, unknown, standing outside life, apart from man.
If they were going to be like that, then I just wished they hadn't actually been German. It was too easy. Too obvious. It was like coming across an Irishman who actually was stupid, a mother-in-law who actually was fat, or an American businessman who actually did have a middle initial and smoked a cigar. You feel as if you are unwillingly performing in a music-hall sketch and wishing you could rewrite the script. If Helmut and Kurt had been Brazilian or Chinese or Latvian or anything else at all, they could then have behaved in exactly the same way and it would have been surprising and intriguing and, more to the point from my perspective, much easier to write about. Writers should not be in the business of propping up stereotypes. I wondered what to do about it, decided that they could simply be Latvians if I wanted, and then at last drifted off peacefully to worrying about my boots.
At the same time he could hardly believe what he had been reading. It struck him as verging on madness. This wild confession, this owing to a crime so outlandish, so totally different from the true ones of mating and theft of the negroes, outraged him with its insolence and perversity. In the conflict of these feelings Erasmus was swept by doubt and loneliness. His whole being seemed under threat of dissolution. What became of law, of legitimacy, of established order, if a man could assume such attitudes of private morality, decide for himself where his fault lay? It turned everything upside down. He could think of nothing more damnable. And ye? He remembered suddenly the second, rarer smile his cousin had, the one that came slowly, transforming his face. Briefly, unwillingly, Erasmus glimpsed the possibility of freedom.
And there was no longer a single race who bred blindly and without question. Time and its agonizing nostalgia would touch the heart each season, and be seen in the fall of a leaf, or, most terrible of all, a loved face would grow old. Cronos and the Fates had entered man's thinking, and try to escape as he might, he would endure an interior Ice Age. He would make, and then unmake fables. Then at last, and unwillingly, comprehend an intangible abstraction called space-time, and shiver inwardly at the endless abysses of space as he had once shivered, unclothed and unlighted before the Earthly frost.