Words, Words, Words

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Words, Words, Words

Postby oldtrailmix » Sat Jun 21, 2014 10:20 pm

Image

Poetry, novel excerpts, song lyrics, quotes, stuff which you wrote or that someone else did - if it's a clump of words that makes you feel something, share it in this thread. Feel free to include images or music that you feel connects with the words somehow.

---

I'm still jamming on Fitzgerald:

Yet high over the city our line of yellow windows must have contributed their share of human secrecy to the casual watcher in the darkening streets, and I was him too, looking up and wondering. I was within and without, simultaneously enchanted and repelled by the inexhaustible variety of life.

Image

Trainspotting:

The truth is that I'm a bad person. But, that's gonna change - I'm going to change. This is the last of that sort of thing. Now I'm cleaning up and I'm moving on, going straight and choosing life. I'm looking forward to it already. I'm gonna be just like you. The job, the family, the fucking big television. The washing machine, the car, the compact disc and electric tin opener, good health, low cholesterol, dental insurance, mortgage, starter home, leisure wear, luggage, three piece suite, DIY, game shows, junk food, children, walks in the park, nine to five, good at golf, washing the car, choice of sweaters, family Christmas, indexed pension, tax exemption, clearing gutters, getting by, looking ahead, the day you die.

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Re: Words, Words, Words

Postby rjbman » Sat Jun 21, 2014 10:44 pm

To say good-bye is to deny separation; it is to say Today we play at going our own ways, but we'll see each other tomorrow. Men invented farewells because they somehow knew themselves to be immortal, even while seeing themselves as contingent and ephemeral.


"Delia Elena San Marco", Jorge Luis Borges.

Spoiler:
I could post for days out of the Borges collection I have, that was one I read recently. This is the first book that genuinely makes me want to start highlighting stuff.
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Re: Words, Words, Words

Postby stappard_ » Sun Jun 22, 2014 8:47 am

Rings of Saturn, W.G. Sebald

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I watched the shadow of our plane hastening below us across hedges and fences, rows of poplars and canals … Nowhere, however, was a single human being to be seen. No matter whether one is flying over Newfoundland or the sea of lights that stretches from Boston to Philadelphia after nightfall, over the Arabian deserts which gleam like mother-of-pearl, over the Ruhr or the city of Frankfurt, it is as though there were no people, only the things they have made and in which they are hiding. One sees the places where they live and the roads that link them, one sees the smoke rising from their houses and factories, one sees the vehicles in which they sit, but one sees not the people themselves. And yet they are present everywhere upon the face of the earth, extending their dominion by the hour, moving around the honeycombs of towering buildings and tied into networks of a complexity that goes far beyond the power of any one individual to imagine, from the thousands of hoists and winches that once worked the South African diamond mines to the floors of today's stock and commodity exchanges, through which the global tides of information flow without cease. If we view ourselves from a great height, it is frightening to realize how little we know about our species, our purpose and our end, I thought, as we crossed the coastline and flew out over the jelly-green sea.
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Re: Words, Words, Words

Postby balloons » Sun Jun 22, 2014 3:33 pm

oh god this is going to be my favorite thread, I can just tell

Your peonies lean their vast heads westward
as if they might topple. Some topple.

- Donald Hall, from Weeds and Peonies

briefly, I considered starting a subversively well-read surfpunk band called Weed and Peonies, but it never panned out beyond a few tentative song drafts.
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Re: Words, Words, Words

Postby JewTurk » Sun Jun 22, 2014 4:54 pm

Infinite Jest was a seriously 10/10 novel.

I find myself quoting it more often than not. Vonnegut too.

This one probably sticks out the most for me in regards to Vonnegut.

"
The First Book

Warning from title page: Don't be a fool! Close this book at once! It is nothing but foma!
[ 118 ]

Verse 1: All of the true things that I am about to tell you are shameless lies. [ 4 ]

Verses 2-4 (?): In the beginning, God created the earth, and he looked upon it in His cosmic loneliness.

And God said, "Let Us make living creatures out of mud, so the mud can see what We have done." And God created every living creature that now moveth, and one was man. Mud as man alone could speak. God leaned close as mud as man sat up, looked around, and spoke. Man blinked. "What is the purpose of all this?" he asked politely.

"Everything must have a purpose?" asked God.

"Certainly," said man.

"Then I leave it to you to think of one for all this," said God.

And He went away. [ 118 ]

Verse 5: Live by the foma that make you brave and kind and healthy and happy.

"

I did a little sketch about this in one of my journals from a year back, the imagery of someone sculpting a man out of mud usually gives high school pseudo-intellectuals a huge boner.

If I had to have a quote tattooed on my body it would definitely be "Live by the foma...".
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Re: Words, Words, Words

Postby balloons » Sat Aug 02, 2014 12:44 am

"It felt strange punching in the code at the gate and seeing how things were different and the same, how the trees had grown while the flowerbeds remained in a state of suspended animation, everything in perpetual bloom and clipped to within a millimeter of perfection. The gardeners saw to that. A whole battalion of them that swarmed over the place twice a week with their blowers and edgers and trimmers, at war with the weeds, the insects, the gophers and ground squirrels, and the very tendency of the display plants to want to grow outside the box."

from TC Boyle's Admiral
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Re: Words, Words, Words

Postby fountainstairs » Sat Aug 02, 2014 3:55 am

a friend said this to me earlier this week:

"she had generic eyes so i see her everywhere"

this really really got to me.
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Re: Words, Words, Words

Postby birdman caw » Sat Aug 02, 2014 2:13 pm

Dickensian Children
Roberto Bolaño

You admire the poet with nerves of steel Right?
Right In the same way you admire
the worker with savage hours and shopkeepers
who fall asleep at dawn counting gold
and 25-year-old girls who fuck all
night and the next day take three or four exams
at the university
It’s tough to understand the above I mean to say
wild animals hanging around the walls of my house
Owls and Dickensian children Lizards and hermaphrodites
painted by Moreau The suns of my two rooms
The buzz of footsteps that can harden at any moment
like a sculpture of dirty plaster The vacant
eyes of the saint riding his horse toward
the Dragon

also Charles Olsen merks

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Re: Words, Words, Words

Postby rublev » Sat Aug 02, 2014 2:55 pm

me to my mum earlier

broken sheeting grazes a glass roof
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Re: Words, Words, Words

Postby chadnik » Sat Aug 02, 2014 3:30 pm

Really like Bolaño. The opening lines of "Prose from Autumn in Girona (Prosa del otoño en Gerona)" (from Tres), translated poorly by me:

A person—I should say a stranger—who caresses you, jokes around with you, is sweet to you and brings you to the edge of a cliff. There, the character cries Oh or becomes pale. As if he were inside a kaleidoscope and seeing the eye looking back at him. Colors arranged in a geometry alien to everything you're prepared to accept as good. This is how autumn begins, between the river Oñar and the hill of Las Pedreras.

The stranger is sprawled out on the bed. Through scenes empty of love (flat bodies, sadomasochistic objects, pills, and the faces of the unemployed) you come to the moment that you declare autumn and you discover the stranger.

In the bedroom, in addition to the reflection that sucks everything into it, you observe stones, yellow slabs of rock, sand, pillows with hairs on them, abandoned pajamas. Then everything disappears.

Original:

Spoiler:
Una persona—debería decir una desconocida—que te acaricia, te hace bromas, es dulce contigo y te lleva hasta la orilla de un precipicio. Allí, el personaje dice ay o empalidece. Como si estuviera dentro de un caleidoscopio y viera el ojo que lo mira. Colores que se ordenan en una geometría ajena a todo lo que tú estás dispuesto a aceptar como bueno. Así empieza el otoño, entre el río Oñar y la colina de las Pedreras.

La desconocida está tirada en la cama. A través de escenas sin amor (cuerpos planos, objetos sadomasoquistas, píldoras y muecas de desempleados) llegas al momento que denominas el otoño y descubres a a la desconocida.

En el cuarto, además del reflejo que lo chupa todo, observas piedras, lajas amarillas, arena, almohadas con pelos, pijamas abandonados. Luego desaparece todo.
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Re: Words, Words, Words

Postby RycePooding » Sat Aug 02, 2014 3:31 pm

This Is Just to Say
William Carlos Williams

I have eaten
the plums
that were in
the icebox

and which
you were probably
saving
for breakfast

Forgive me
they were delicious
so sweet
and so cold
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Re: Words, Words, Words

Postby rublev » Sat Aug 02, 2014 7:40 pm

Image

Paul Celan might be my favourite poet. The above is a piece called Todesfuge (Death Fugue) and is probably his most famous poem. It's also the first i read and the lines 'We shovel a grave in the air' and 'scrape your strings darker you'll rise then as smoke to the sky' have always stayed with me.

He was born in Romania in 1920, and grew up in a Jewish family which resulted in both his parents dying in labour camps (Celan also spent time in a camp). Post WW2 he moved to Bucharest, Vienna, and finally Paris. He never really escaped the mental weight of being Jewish and German, and the events of the Holocaust (which the above poem is about). He committed suicide by throwing himself into the Seine in 1970.

His life was tragic but also incredibly interesting and moving. There's a brilliant biography by John Felstiner that i'd recommend if anyone is interested in reading more about him. It combines both poetry analysis and his story. Really good read.
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Re: Words, Words, Words

Postby Iliam » Sat Aug 02, 2014 10:51 pm

Provide, Provide

The witch that came (the withered hag)
To wash the steps with pail and rag
Was once the beauty Abishag,

The picture pride of Hollywood.
Too many fall from great and good
For you to doubt the likelihood.

Die early and avoid the fate.
Or if predestined to die late,
Make up your mind to die in state.

Make the whole stock exchange your own!
If need be occupy a throne,
Where nobody can call you crone.

Some have relied on what they knew,
Others on being simply true.
What worked for them might work for you.

No memory of having starred
Atones for later disregard
Or keeps the end from being hard.

Better to go down dignified
With boughten friendship at your side
Than none at all. Provide, provide!

-Robert Frost


Fifth and sixth stanzas providing some unbearable accurate life advice
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Re: Words, Words, Words

Postby frogosaurus » Sun Aug 03, 2014 6:36 am

can't get this one out of my head lately

I realized these were all the snapshots which our children would look at someday with wonder, thinking their parents had lived smooth, well-ordered lives and got up in the morning to walk proudly on the sidewalks of life, never dreaming the raggedy madness and riot of our actual lives, our actual night, the hell of it, the senseless emptiness.


-kerouac
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Re: Words, Words, Words

Postby longjumps » Mon Aug 04, 2014 10:27 am

Piano and Scene

A child needs to know the point of the holiday.

His aunt is saying grace over a decaffeinated coffee
and her daughter is reading a Russian novel
whose 45 chapters are set
on 45 consecutive Valentine’s Days.

Grandpa is telling the kids fairy tales
from Pennsylvania’s pretzel-making region

and it’s hard for me to be in the mood
you want me to be in right now,

as I’m suddenly wrapped up in this speculation
on the as yet undiscovered moods of the future,

like nostalgia for a discontinued model of robot
or patriotic feelings for your galaxy

which will probably resemble nosalgia and patriotism
as we now know it, but with added tiers of complexity.

Even if we could manage to travel in time, who’s to say
we could relate with those who receive us?

Perhaps we would not be able to read the expressions
on our own descendants faces for what they mean.

As advanced as we consider ourselves,
we still allow ad copy to pander to us.
The scam exposed, it endures with our permission
as a parallel narrative running beside our lives
where we sit with an unbuttered baked potato
and a warm beer in multiple versions of Akron
leavened with foreclosure, heartburn and rain.

Great-grandfather’s hobbies, whether they be botany or magic,
can barely make sense to a boy named Occupant III.

Their genius was to let us criticize them
until it became boring and obvious to do so.

Meanwhile they were up ahead, busily constructing a world
in which boring and obvious criticism
was about the worst thing you could do,
and when we reached them in the time they were waiting
with their multiple Akrons,
always one link ahead in the chain of consent.

Maybe we need to give up on these simplistic
"us vs. them" oppositions that we shouldn’t believe in,
but in our anger do.

Perhaps we should be concentrating
on what’s going to happen an hour or two from now,

whether the human race will survive into this afternoon,
what kinds of food they will eat at the dinner table

and what tales they’ll tell of this morning.

- David Berman
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Re: Words, Words, Words

Postby Iliam » Sat Aug 09, 2014 7:36 am

In a field

I am the absence

of field.

This is

always the case.

Wherever I am

I am what is missing...


We all have reasons

for moving.

I move

to keep things whole.

- Mark Strand, from the collection Sleeping with One Eye Open
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Re: Words, Words, Words

Postby DeafIdiotGod » Sat Aug 09, 2014 9:29 am

Particularly weird snippets from Jordaan Mason's Divorce Lawyers I Shaved My Head

My mouth is filled with his ovaries
I hold them: here, between my teeth


You look so much better without that shit in your hair
I mean, saddles if you need them, but I could ride you bare


He confessed a gravedigger shared with him his bed
And I pulled the telephones right out of his head
He quit his job, pulled his teeth, and moved down to the harbour
He stole all my money to pay for the lawyers
And now he's a whalekiller in the wasteland for hire
He can only get it up when you set him on fire


You are a girl with a cock
I am a boy who can't talk


And standing near the window
She pulls her pants down a little
And says, 'Do you see where I used to be a boy?'
Do you see where I used to be a boy?
I said 'I've had in my mouth, I swallowed the evidence down'
And the children you wanted around, they've stayed in my stomach to drown
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Re: Words, Words, Words

Postby wiggly--woo » Sat Aug 09, 2014 11:45 am

Opening lines to The Bell Jar by Sylvia Plath:

It was a clear, sultry summer, the summer they electrocuted the Rosenbergs, and I didn't know what I was doing in New York. I'm stupid about executions. The idea of being electrocuted makes me sick, and that's all there was to read about in the papers - goggle-eyed headlines staring up at me on every street corner and at the fusty, peanut-smelling mouth of every subway. It had nothing to do with me, but I couldn't help wondering what it would be like, being burned alive all along your nerves.

I thought it must be the worst thing in the world.
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Re: Words, Words, Words

Postby bels » Sat Aug 09, 2014 6:46 pm

Bright enfolding arch of sky

Where are words to voice my heart?
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Re: Words, Words, Words

Postby WikiZuHeltzer » Sun Aug 10, 2014 5:25 pm

I knew a simple soldier boy
Who grinned at life in empty joy,
Slept soundly through the lonesome dark,
And whistled early with the lark.

In winter trenches, cowed and glum,
With crumps and lice and lack of rum,
He put a bullet through his brain.
No one spoke of him again.

You smug-faced crowds with kindling eye
Who cheer when soldier lads march by,
Sneak home and pray you'll never know
The hell where youth and laughter go.


Suicide in the Trenches, Siegfried Sassoon

-------------

http://www.bbc.co.uk/iplayer/episode/b0 ... w-19081955

Good program for UK c-t'ers (or those who can get into BBC iPlayer) about the evolution of British poetry in the first half of the 20th C.
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Re: Words, Words, Words

Postby klonopin » Mon Aug 11, 2014 2:08 am

I like this thread a lot more than the books one. Quotes feel like a more substantive way to generate discussion, especially when ppl haven't read the book and everyone's picked really good one I have to go pick up some Bolaño poetry ASAP.

This is a great passage from the best book I've read this summer.
Don DeLillo, from Underworld
Spoiler:
Detwiler had been a fringe figure in the sixties, a garbage guerrilla who stole and analyzed the household trash of a number of famous people. He issued mock-comintern manifestos about the contents, with personal asides, and the underground press was quick to print this stuff. His activities had a crisp climax when he was arrested for snatching the garbage of J. Edgar Hoover from the rear of the Director's house in northwest Washington and this what people remembered when i first reheard the name Jesse Detwiler. He'd earned a brief feverish fame in the chronicles of the time, part of the strolling band of tambourine girls and bomb makers, levitators and acid droppers and lost children.
A bird flew across the width of the crater, a finch or wren, moving with the nervous fleetness, the urgency of sundown.
Detwiler said that cities rose on garbage, inch by inch, gaining elevation through the decades as buried debris increased, Garbage always got layered over or pushed to the edges, in a room or in a landscape. But it had its own momentum. It pushed back. It pushed into every space available, dictating construction patterns and altering systems of ritual. And it produced rats and paranoia. People were compelled to develop an organized response. This meant they had to come up with a resourceful means of disposal and build a social structure to carry it out-- workers, manages, haulers, scavengers. Civilization is built, history is driven--
He talked in his talk-show way, focused, practiced, generically intimate. He was a waste hustler, looking for book deals and documentary films, and I don't think he cared whether we were two people listening or half a million.
"See, we have everything backward," he said.
Civilization did not rise and flourish as men hammered out hunting scenes on bronzed gates and whispered philosophy under the stars with garbage as a noisome offshoot, swept away and forgotten. No, garbage rose first, inciting people to build a civilization in response, in self-defense. We had to find ways to discard our waste, to use what we couldn't discard, to reprocess what we couldn't use. Garbage pushed back. It mounted and spread. And it forced us to develop the logic and rigor that would lead to systematic investigations of reality, to science, art music, mathematics.
The sun went down.
"Do you really believe that?" I said.
"Bet your ass I believe it. I teach it at UCLA. I take my students into garbage dumps and make them understand the civilization they live in. Consume or die. That's the mandate of culture. And it all ends up in the dump. We make stupendous amounts of garbage, then we react to it, not only technologically but in our hearts and minds. We let it shape us. We let it control our thinking. Garbage comes first, then we build a system to deal with it."
Part of a poem in a similar vein, more creation/destruction, waste/civilization rambling
another WCW, @RycePooding
from Paterson, Book 3
Spoiler:
Fire burns; that is the first law.
When a wind fans it the flames

are carried abroad. Talk
fans the flames. They have

manoeuvered it so that to write
is a fire and no only of the blood.

The writing is nothing, the being
in a position to write (that's

where they get you) is nine tenths
of the difficulty: seduction

or strong arm stuff. The writing
should be a relief,

...

Papers
(consumed) scattered to the winds. Black.
The ink burned white, metal white. So be it.
Come overall beauty. Come soon. So be it.
A dust between the fingers. So be it.
Come tatterdemalion tuility. Win through.
So be it. So be it.

An iron dog, eyes
aflame in a flame-filled corridor. A drunkenness
of flames. So be it. A bottle, mauled by the flames, belly-bent with laughter:
yellow, green. So be it-- of drunkenness
survived, in guffaws of flame. All fire afire!
So be it. Swallowing the fire. So be
it. Torqued to laughter by the fire,
the very fire. So be it. Chortling at flames
sucked in, a multiformity of laughter, a
flaming gravity surpassing the sobriety of
flames, a chastity of annihilation. Recreant,
calling it good. Calling the fire good.
So be it. The beauty of fire -blasted sand
that was glass, that was a bottle: unbottled.
Unabashed. So be it.

An old bottle, mauled by the fire
gets a new glaze, the glass warped
to a new distinction, reclaiming the
undefined. A hot stone, reached
by the tide, crackled over by fire
lines, the glaze unspoiled .
Annihilation ameliorated: Hottest
lips lifted till no shape but a vast
most of the news flows. Drink
of the news, fluid to the breath.
Shouts its laughter, crying out-- by
an investment of grace in the sand
--or stone: oasis water. The glass
splotched with concentric rainbows
of cold fire that the fire has bequeathed
there as it cools, its flam
defied-- the flame that wrapped the glass
deflowered, reflowered there by
the flame: a second flame, surpassing
heat .

Hell's fire. Fire. Sit your horny ass
down. What's your game? Beat you
at your own game, Fire. Outlast you:
Poet Beats Fire at Its Own Game! The bottle!
the bottle! the bottle! the bottle! I
give you the bottle! What's burning now, Fire?
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Re: Words, Words, Words

Postby absurdmind » Mon Aug 11, 2014 3:17 am

jean-paul sartre's nausea is one of my favourite books of all time and this isnt the first time ive posted a passage, but as i come home less than sober tonight only to realize this summer is drawing close to its end i find this beautiful passage especially relevant again.

Alas! Now I see so clearly what I wanted. Real beginnings are like a fanfare of trumpets, like the first notes of a jazz tune, cutting short tedium, making for continuity: then you say about these evenings within evenings: "I was out for a walk, it was an evening in May." You walk, the moon has just risen, you feel lazy, vacant, a little empty. And then suddenly you think: "Something has happened." No matter what: a slight rustling in the shadow, a thin silhouette crossing the street. But this paltry event is not like the others: suddenly you see that it is the beginning of a great shape whose outlines are lost in mist and you tell yourself, "Something is beginning."

Something is beginning in order to end: adventure does not let itself be drawn out; it only makes sense when dead. I am drawn, irrevocably, towards this death which is perhaps mine as well. Each instant appears only as part of a sequence. I cling to each instant with all my heart: I know that it is unique, irreplaceable—and yet I would not raise a finger to stop it from being annihilated. This last moment I am spending—in Berlin, in London—in the arms of a woman casually met two days ago—moment I love passionately, woman I may adore—all is going to end, I know it. Soon I shall leave for another country. I shall never rediscover either this woman or this night. I grasp at each second, trying to suck it dry: nothing happens which I do not seize, which I do not fix forever in myself, nothing, neither the fugitive tenderness of those lovely eyes, nor the noises of the street, nor the false dawn of early morning: and even so the minute passes and I do not hold it back, I like to see it pass.

All of a sudden something breaks off sharply. The adventure is over, time resumes its daily routine. I turn; behind me, this beautiful melodious form sinks entirely into the past. It grows smaller, contracts as it declines, and now the end makes one with the beginning. Following this gold spot with my eyes I think I would accept—even if I had to risk death, lose a fortune, a friend—to live it all over again, in the same circumstances, from end to end. But an adventure never returns nor is prolonged.
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Re: Words, Words, Words

Postby parastexis » Mon Aug 11, 2014 9:58 am

somewhere i have never travelled,gladly beyond
any experience,your eyes have their silence:
in your most frail gesture are things which enclose me,
or which i cannot touch because they are too near

your slightest look easily will unclose me
though i have closed myself as fingers,
you open always petal by petal myself as Spring opens
(touching skilfully,mysteriously)her first rose

or if your wish be to close me, i and
my life will shut very beautifully ,suddenly,
as when the heart of this flower imagines
the snow carefully everywhere descending;

nothing which we are to perceive in this world equals
the power of your intense fragility:whose texture
compels me with the color of its countries,
rendering death and forever with each breathing

(i do not know what it is about you that closes
and opens;only something in me understands
the voice of your eyes is deeper than all roses)
nobody,not even the rain,has such small hands

e e cummings
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Re: Words, Words, Words

Postby thatbiglake » Wed Aug 13, 2014 8:40 pm

nn
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Re: Words, Words, Words

Postby alby » Sun Aug 17, 2014 1:20 pm

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hope this is an appropriate thread
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Re: Words, Words, Words

Postby chadnik » Wed Aug 20, 2014 11:47 pm

@RycePooding

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Re: Words, Words, Words

Postby oldtrailmix » Thu Aug 21, 2014 12:33 am

Chapter One:

And so with the sunshine and the great bursts of leaves growing on the trees, just as things grow in fast movies, I had that familiar conviction that life was beginning over again with the summer.

Image


Chapter Seven:

"What'll we do with ourselves this afternoon?" cried Daisy, "and the day after that, and the next thirty years?"

"Don't be morbid," Jordan said. "Life starts all over again when it gets crisp in the fall."


God, what a book.
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oldtrailmix
 
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Re: Words, Words, Words

Postby Iliam » Sun Oct 12, 2014 10:00 pm

The Fish

She stands over a fish, thinking about certain irrevocable mistakes she has made today. Now the fish has been cooked, and she is alone with it. The fish is for her--there is no one else in the house. But she has had a troubling day. How can she eat this fish, cooling on a slab of marble? And yet the fish, too, motionless as it is, and dismantled from its bones, and fleeced of its silver skin, has never been so completely alone as it is now: violated in a final manner and regarded with a weary eye by this woman who has made the latest mistake of her day and done this to it.

- Lydia Davis
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Iliam
 
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Re: Words, Words, Words

Postby kyung » Wed Feb 11, 2015 2:55 am

broken english

when my mother struggles to spell a word in english
I want to break the entire language
into little pieces
so the edges of these letters
will stop cutting her
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KIMCHI SLAP

_( :⁍ 」 )_
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Re: Words, Words, Words

Postby wintyd0n0 » Wed Feb 11, 2015 6:21 am

This is quite well known in England and is one of my favourite passages at the moment.

If I should die think only this of me:
That there's some corner of a foreign field
That is forever England.

-Rupert Brooke
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