"I stopped for a second. If you remember everything, I wanted to say, and if you are really like me, then before you leave tomorrow, or when you’re just ready to shut the door of the taxi and have already said goodbye to everyone else and there’s not a thing left to say in this life, then, just this once, turn to me, even in jest, or as an afterthought, which would have meant everything to me when we were together, and, as you did back then, look me in the face, hold my gaze, and call me by your name…"
#call me by your name
André Aciman, Call Me By Your Name
"Life is composed of certain basic elements,” he says.
“Of course, there are a lot of impurities, that’s what’s misleading.”
“What I’m saying may sound mystical, but in everybody, in all of us, there’s the desire to find those elements somehow, to discover them, you know? Sometimes I think they’re the same for all of us, but maybe they’re not. I mean we look at the Greeks and say, ah, they built this civilization, this whole brilliant world, out of certain simple things. Why can’t we? And if not a civilization, why can’t each of us, properly directed, build a life, I mean a happy life? Believe me, the elements exist. When you enter certain rooms, when you look at certain faces, suddenly you realize you’re in the presence of them. Do you know what I mean?”
“Of course I do,” she says. “If you could achieve that, you’d have everything.”
“And without it you have…” he shrugs, “a life.”
“Just like everybody’s,” he says.
“I don’t want that.”
“Neither do I."
James Salter, A Sport and a Pastime
#a sport and a pastime
"Stories were different, though. They came alive in the telling. Without a human voice to read them aloud, or a pair of wide eyes following them by torchlight beneath a blanket, they had no real existence in this world. They were like seeds in the beak of a bird, waiting to fall to Earth, or notes of a song, laid out on a sheet, yearning for an instrument to bring them into being. They lay dormant, hoping for a chance to emerge. Once someone started to read them, they could begin to change. They could take root in the imagination and transform the reader. Stories wanted to be read, David’s mother would whisper. They needed it. It was the reason they forced themselves from their world into ours. They wanted us to give them life."
#The Book of Lost Things
"Suddenly, all at once, she knows, knows that he doesn’t understand her, that he never will, that he lacks the power to understand such perverseness. And that he can never move fast enough to catch her."